Its Martin Luther King Day so everyone is talking about black stuff. Some people are people are attempting to be politically correct so they are addressing everyone by addressing “people of color”. But Im not doing that. Im going to talk about black people. If black people can rise above oppression it will be much easier for others.
Jada Pinkett Smith and Spike Lee are calling for us to boycott the Oscars. Im surprised by both of them because they both profit from the institution they are attempting to vilify. Spike Lee just received an honorary Oscar and happily received it. It seems to me he would have taken a bigger stance by rejecting it due to the Academy’s lack of respect to black entertainers. Yet, he took it and went home. Now he wants to boycott the show.
Jada, while she doesn’t seem to be benefiting the same way Spike Lee has from the institution still benefits. She is definitely apart of the Hollywood elite, not the Black Hollywood elite…the Hollywood elite. I don’t know too much, but I did notice that Overbrook Entertainment is 90% productions that Will Smith stars in. So its safe to say Jada Pinkett represents Hollywood. The Hollywood that is hard if almost impossible to reach if you’re not related to someone or super lucky. That hollywood that gets to screen films for the president and can look at their names on the floor of Hollywood Blvd. The Hollywood that everyone wants to be apart of, at least the part that I want to be in as an actor/producer.
Its hard to love or hate the message because as a black woman I want to achieve everything she’s achieved and a part of me feel like we should all be pushing for her. She’s managed
to create wealth for herself and her family and isolate herself from racism and systematic injustices. As a people we are proud of the Smiths and what they’ve accomplished for themselves. Will Smith recently said in his world racism is rare. Which has proved my point that they have been able to successfully isolate their-selves from racism because In my world racism is very prevalent.
I probably won’t watch the Oscars. Not because I want to boycott it, but Im a cord cutter and I watch my tv online. But I am disappointed. Spike and Jada have so much power and they’re using to boycott a show that doesn’t care if we watch it to not? Really? What about supporting award shows that do praise our entertainers such as The NAACP Image Awards, The BET Awards, The Soul Train Awards, The Vh1 Hip-Hop Honors, The Source Awards and plenty others. Why don’t they try to uplift the award shows that actually recognize the talents of black people? Instead of pleading to the grandsons and daughters of the people who enslaved our ancestors to give us an award.
The Academy won’t recognize black people or other people of color next year, in 5 years or even in 10 years. We have to remember who founded the Academy. When a black person wins an Oscar is usually not a character we can be proud of i.e. Precious, Training Day, so do we even want this award?