Dear Media, Stop Giving The Industry Props Every Time a Black Person is Nominated
#OscarSoWhite really did a number on the awards circuit this year. The uproar over the all-White nominations cast a dark spell (no pun intended) on what was supposed to be Hollywood’s over-accessorized annual fiesta.
#Diversity became the hashtag of 2016.
And the media expectedly overdosed on all the million and one ways in which people of color have been purposely sidelined because of narrow-minded fucks who like it that way.
I even got caught up in the mix tape of all things non-diverse. But, my take on it differed greatly.
I believe that the word “diversity” is a cop out for those in power who recognize the significance in a movement that warrants efficiency and due diligence.
Let’s give people of color the opportunity to shine. Finally.
How generous. Perfect timing! The climate is ripe with acceptance and so it’s only fair that corporations and industries join the fad of the moment.
So nobody’s left behind.
This is the best we can do. After years upon years of adherence to the White Only itinerary with specs of color sprinkled in between.
I mean we lived through stupid shows like Friends — with the all-White cast of characters living in the most diverse city in the world and yet — that reality was hardly reflected and they had a pretty long run.
The point is that social media has done a great job initiating the campaigns that strive to blow the whistle on issues that we’ve been accommodating long before clicks became the source of human contact.
The downside is that all this attention to detail is minimizing instead of maximizing the the issues at hand.
The Emmy nominations were announced and gratifyingly 21 talents of color were included in the highest honor television bestows.
I ordinarily wouldn’t know this — but thanks to the intense scrutiny that was conceived from the gallant need to guard the integrity of diversity — we will never have to wonder how many people of color get recognized for their hard work and perseverance .
This might sound like major progress but it’s actually a major pain in the neck.
No more touting and praising the industry for doing what they are supposed to do. Refrain from trumpeting the live feed of the results that prove that racism is on the way out and equality is securing its place.
Because it’s not.
The youth of today are getting shot to bits because they are too big and too black to not pose a risk.
Black shows like black-ish and Empire are okay but they don’t warrant that level of recognition. They’ve gotten it because of what they stand for — not because of the mind-blowing content or performances.
It is what it is.
Maybe this trend will last beyond our fears and anger. But it won’t overtake the facts of life.
We need to stop detailing how progressive the industry has gotten since they were almost buried under a catastrophic PR dilemma.
No more banners waving the increasing homage to diversify the palettes of the demanding crowd.
It’s simply too late to make amends after what we’ve been through — past and present.
Yes, the direction of things seem to be heading in the right direction. But until — we stop finding the end of the line and inherently acknowledge the gifted for what they bring regardless of hue and culture — this diversity train is headed nowhere.
And honestly — it probably should stay in limbo.
Until further notice.