Around January of this year, I started to realize that the movement was in trouble.
Will and Jada Pinkett Smith, who are collectively worth around $200mil, threw the biggest temper tantrum in history by sitting out the Academy Awards because Will was not nominated for Concussion. It even inspired the hashtag #oscarssowhite. While I too was surprised at the snub since Hollywood is made up of Concussion’s key demographic, people who act and sound like they just had a concussion, I was increasingly disturbed by the language the Smiths were using.
“This is so deeply NOT about me,” Will Smith lied, “This is about the children who are going to sit down and watch this show and they’re not going to see themselves represented.”
Not only is this so insulting to poor and minority children who a. Probably don’t watch the Academy Awards and b. Aren’t stupid enough to think that a couple rich folks getting gold is representative of them, but never does he mention real issues with minorities getting in the door in Hollywood. Like, unpaid internships for example.
While the mega-rich hem and haw about an award that will add 15% to their net worth, unpaid internships, which are often full time, and 6 months to a year long, ensure that those coming up in the ranks remain white and rich. And then who do white and rich people cast? White and rich people. And then who do white and rich people vote for? You get it.
The media rarely if ever points this out because they function the same way. Vox recently opened up a full time job in NYC for a ‘race and identities writer.’ This writer will work full time, 50 hours a week, writing about race while living in midtown NYC.
And it pays $30,000 a year.
No exaggeration. Vox raised $300mil, and they want to pay a presumably PoC writer $30k a year.
Now, I’m friends with many journalists, and they’d say that they wished they got 30k when they first started out. But you know who else knows this? Vox. And trust me, while Vox wants a R&I writer, they definitely don’t want someone who isn’t somewhat independently wealthy because of their parents or their spouse. It’s almost as if they don’t want … a certain … class?
But thankfully Will Smith said he would be contributing money to the problem. He and his wife now have a program to educate other actors and directors in Hollywood about diversity.
How much for 500 copies of Crash?
You might ask why is Will and Jada fighting “racism” a problem. Well, you see, the problem is that they become the most vocal leaders of the left. And politicians, who think they’re cool, want people to associate these celebrities with liberal causes. But it backfires. Instead of thinking liberal causes are “cool,” which sure, a few vocal and influential liberal publications will claim, they start thinking leftist causes are just for the mega-rich.
Consider this John Leguizamo lie in the NY Times:
A well-intentioned producer once said to me, “John, you’re so talented, but too bad you’re Latin — otherwise you’d be so much further along.”
You see this a lot - the anonymous racist and sexist producer. 99% of Hollywood has run into him and yet he’s still chugging along. But imagine somebody being so stupid as to say that John Leguizamo, a character actor who gets a ton of roles mostly because he is Latino, would be “further along” if he were ‘not latin.’ You mean like Fernando Lamas, Anthony Quinn, Raul Julia, and Desi Arnaz? If John weren’t Latin, what would he be? Ryan Gosling? What’s the endgame here?
All this is to say we need to cut out the rich, “what about me?” liberals. If you’re rich, you have something nobody else can buy: freedom. So if you willfully participate in Hollywood’s disgusting racism and sexism after making 500, 100, or 25 million dollars, then guess what? You are not a hero! You are what is called “an accomplice.” Don’t insult people’s intelligence by looking up racism stats on Wikipedia and saying, “oh yeah, I get that too.”
People enjoy watching celebrities on TV, but they’re smart enough to know that no celebrity is going to help them get healthcare, a living wage, or a college education. Hillary Clinton played a 2-on-2 basketball game with Lebron James against Beyonce and her husband, and she still got crushed in Ohio.
When everyday people face racism and sexism, when a young black man’s job application is denied because of his name or a woman is sexually harassed at work, they are fighting FOR THEIR LIVES. You can’t associate people fighting for their livelihood with people fighting for their lives. They’re two completely different things. Until mega-rich celebrities, and I’m not even talking about the 9th lead on Chicago Fire here, make their entire platform about how sexism and racism can make you poor and how they don’t want anybody else to go through to make $25k what they had to go through to become millionaires, then people will just ignore them and ignore the politician high-fiving him at a rally.
Hollywood leans left, it’s everywhere, and because of how hard they’ve co-opted the movement from the people it actually matters to, nobody gives a fuck.