Looks like the last comment sums it up pretty well. Funny that even though respected research firms have released stats just this week on viewers turning away given a number of factors, the networks persist in the same approach. While some in the comment-sphere are clearly tired of hearing about race, others are equally tired of being the invisible man (and/or woman). A change is surely coming, and when the music stops, the traditional outlets will be so shocked. So now you are starting to see outlets like us. And what's part our new tagline: "When CNN just isn't enough." Enjoy!
What do you get when you cross two cable news networks with predominately Caucasian anchors?: CNN and MSNBC, according to some sources. The two networks have recently come under fire after a re-shuffle in programming has resulted in a lineup of white males. CNN's core African-American anchor, Soledad O'Brien, will be leaving her post as anchor of one of network's most highly rated morning shows in the spring. Over at MSNBC, though both legendary civil rights leader Rev. Al Sharpton and resident political genius Melissa Harris-Perry both host their own shows, neither were ever offered a primetime spot. Instead, on both stations, one Caucasian man is constantly replaced with another. In 2013 and an increasingly diverse America, some media outlets are asking why aren't there more faces of color on our screens discussing current events and politics? Is it intentional or just an oversight? Check the sound off below...
Overwhelming a "nay" on this one. Clearly Jada's world is different from most, but she can't be that out of touch with the public to realize that most Black women do not think that they are represented fairly and consistently enough in the U.S. to give up what few urban media cover outlets there are - at least that is what the comment-sphere is showing. Or is it more about provocation, in general? This whole incident shows that almost anything race-related will get traction and attention. These spurts of conversation give quick, albeit shallow, avenues for conversations that would not otherwise be had. The interesting thing here is that the comment-arena gets more to the root of the issue (citing economic disparity, etc) moreso than Pinkett herself, and therein lies the real heart of the matter. Until people begin to actually admit that there are invisible barriers/inequalities, address why they persist and how it affects people economically (and, therefore, quality of life), we'll have a discussion about race that goes around and around in a circle. We have to say, though, a very hot media move on her part today - and she didn't even need the media to do it. Her social media page was enough. SmartPower in action? Now, that's a definite yay!
Mrs. Will Smith is the latest celebrity to speak out on the color divide and race matters in Hollywood. The five foot firecracker has issued a call to action for all major African-American magazines and publications to open their covers to Caucasian women, in the same form that predominately Caucasian publications have been opening their covers to women of all ethnicities so that race barriers are less prevalent. Pinkett-Smith took to her Facebook page in order to pose the thought-provoking idea to the public; she even provided examples using a mock cover of Cosmopolitan with America's sweetheart Queen Latifah on the cover, and a mock cover of Essence with academy-award winner Charlize Theron on the cover. This call to action comes on the heels of the unexpected firing of Essence's editor-in-cheif, Constance C. R. White, over conflicting ideas with Essence's board of directors about the editorial direction of the publication. Seems like Mrs. Pinkett-Smith has quite a lot to say! What say you?
...a question Jada should pose to white magazines...Apart from Michelle Obama being on Vogue's cover, I can't remember that last time I saw a woman who looks like me...on the cover of an American fashion magazine...you want us to share our covers with white women despite us not having that many covers to share...can't be serious.
No, Jada. No more dilution of the cause for nothing in return...already lent Martin, Medgar, and Emmit's legacy to gay marriage...and after all that all we have to show for it is the highest unemployment in America...Things are going backwards for blacks in America...Less black women on Essence just means less Black women shining on magazine covers.
...I doubt many White actresses would want to appear on the cover of a Black woman's magazine for fear of the PR nightmare...not to mention wondering what her presence on the cover would mean. Nice try Jada, but bad idea...
Funny. Don't they always say that charity begins at home? Nice that Dunham is involved in this situation (whether it was a ploy by some or not) but given that her show is consistently under fire for not portraying the true diversity that is New York City, her attempt leaves her open for critique. At any rate, the comments show that we in America are dying for true discussions about race relations, changing perceptions about race, imbalance and more; yet there is nothing consistent and holistic. It's catch as catch can as we move deeper into the SmartPower era where new values are unfolding. Given that Millennials are the most diverse demo our country has ever seen, we'd say: watch for some very interesting new platforms to be created so that this generation doesn't have to go through the same as its elders when it comes to the area of race!
Star and creator of HBO's hit series Girls, Lena Dunham has petitioned the students at her alma mater to keep the peace. Oberlin College has recently come under fire for what some are calling racist actions by a few individuals. Anti-semetic and anti-black sentiments have been strewn across walls on campus, and some students claim to have seen someone dressed in Ku Klux Klan robe on Monday night. Oberlin College was one of the first campuses in the United States to integrate, so news of such intolerance comes a disheartening not only to students but to alumni. Classes have been cancelled until further notice. Fans think what?
As a father of an Oberlin student...Do I get the cost of a day's tuition knocked off my bill?... who could argue against a community coming together and talking about race relations? Even if the events that sparked this were "fake," the end result is a positive.
Stereotypes, technology, marriage - these themes are recurrent when it comes to comments about this topic. This is about not only re-evaluating a value system but also how that is intertwined with an out-dated race theory in the U.S. as well. What might be the most interesting about this is how each commenter thinks his/her little microcosm is indicative of the entire macrocosm. They know it all, without any statistics and facts. This is part of the issue when dealing with the race-income issue. Woe is us, if we don't find more efficient ways of communicating about these issues!
A new report has the media buzzing. The income of African-American families has increased somewhat overtime, but white families continue to earn significantly more. This is the conclusion of a study by the Institute on Assets and Social Policy at Brandeis University. The reports say that the gap between white and African-American family wealth increased from $85,070 in 1984 to $236,500 in 2009.The study also found that homeownership is the biggest difference in racial wealth inequality because white families are more likely to have help from relatives increasing their home equity. Income is second. Has this hit the radar of the general public, and if so, what is sentiment?
Could differences in family structure contribute to this gap? Married couples tend to do better financially than singles. ... Fewer blacks marry compared to whites, and more babies are born out of wedlock among blacks than whites. ...
... The property value in my neighborhood has declined ever since more blacks and minorities started moving in. ... They don't like doing yardwork, and won't even hire the Mexicans to do it for them. ... They move in, let the house and yard get run down ... And the reason Blacks have a problem getting raises or promotions is because most of them don't deserve it. All the ones I have ever worked with, spend more time trying to figure out how to get out of doing their job ... Then if they get fired over it, it's always because they were black. ...
...The real problem is technology. We have a society in which there is a highly paid class of heavily qualified people and those at the bottom who can't earn a living wage by doing menial jobs like they could before. The solution is Basic Income ...
One for the race theory revision books, for sure. As we examine our current period's issues with diversity, quotas and more, perhaps we are using fictional worlds to analyze and question in a way that makes it more palatable. For sure, race is a truly sensitive topic in this country, and the comments, particularly the last one, demonstrate this. While many fans welcome the introduction of a new character, claiming that the show has become too predictable, others see it as a tedious result of social pressures/norms. We do not often like talking about race precisely because we have little or no practice at true conversations about it. Feelings are often times overly-heightened or suggested to be completely squashed. Let's see if "Downton Abbey" can potentially be an avenue to intelligent discussion. But here's something we'd love to know now: who will be cast as this hot singer dude? Hmmmm.....
It may be 2013, but adding diversity to television programming seems to still, sadly, make for media news. Case in point? The hit series on PBS, "Downton Abbey" has just announced it will add a Black character to next season's storyline. The character is said to be a singer and will possess a certain "X" factor. Let's see what viewers think of the new news!
Why does diversity = "getting a black man"? To quote many an after-school special, there are other races....Not that I'm against the idea per se but this decision seems more reactionary than thought out.
Temple University sociologis Howard Winant has said that we need a new race theory. Films and the digital public sphere around them create talking points that could, perhaps, be leading us this way. People have very different perspectives regarding words, images and how these sentiments and expression effect current day society. (and, btw, Tarantino loves this word no matter whether it's slavery days or not - see the filmography). Look for more confrontation in 2012 on how we view race and the race dynamic in this country - not purely as a result of film but also actual real-life events. In the meantime, pass the popcorn?
UPDATE 1/3/13: The new Quentin Tarantino film, Django Unchained, is receiving much criticism for using the "n-word". The movie takes place during slavery making the n-word common for this time periods, but critics think Tarantino is pushing the limit by using the derogatory word over 110 times. Django producer Reggie Hudlin asks his audience to move past this word and to focus on "bigger themes in the movie". But is the comment arena up for this dictate? UPDATE: "Hollywood Reporter" quotes the film studio as saying that the film is playing well to all races across the board, moving from 42% of an African-American audience Xmas day to now a mix of all races. There you have it!
... if the movie was about an exslave, wouldn't that have been a common term for that time period? I personally hate the use of the word by any one but you can't walk down the street or ride the train or whatever without hearing it a million times so why blast the movie?
More fuel for the fire of race in politics. Interesting though how some think that political "experts" are actually more well-versed than creatives when it comes to speaking about their opinions. We don't know what Spike reads, who he speaks to and what research he does. Apparently for those who comment that the voice should not be heard are not quite aware that we are living in the new leaderful era - whether you agree with dude or not. What makes an expert or not, truly? Especially when it comes to voicing opinion about race (which we'll see more and more of in the coming months). In the meantime, what's up with the next flick, Spike?
Filmmaker Spike Lee said President Barack Obama faces “nasty” and “very close” re-election campaign and does not think Obama will win. Lee says he “will be dead before it happens." Lee’s comments sparked a race-in-politics debate again with some people calling Lee a racist and others saying they don’t care about what he says at all.
This coming from an untalented, moronic racist. … Spike, you little common variety gutter worm. Nobody cares what you have to say. Go back under your rock. … He's deeply racist and has no concept of what a President should be. The REASON Obama is failing is because of people like Lee who have opined that criticizing a mixed race President is akin to racism. … Hypocritical moronic douche.
Many Black people voted for Obama because he is half black. Some white and Hispanic people did as well. A person's color is no reason to vote for him. … Spike Lee’s support is a very bad thing for the Obama campaign. … It always amazes me that there are people that think public figures--sports, acting, whatever--are "experts" in the field of politics. …
Oh Lord, another Hollyweird liberal political expert. … I think he's correct about the Nasty re-election part. … Spike, stick to making movies because when it comes to making statements otherwise, you were the original Kanye West.
The incident that continues to bring conversation of race to the forefront takes another turn and continues to demonstrate the current divide that exists in the U.S. Interesting to note is general sentiment in the comment-sphere depending on if one is looking at a ethnic-focused site versus mainstream demonstrating that there a feeling of inequality regarding the situation continues to persist across the former. A huge trending topic on Twitter when the news broke, the Zimmerman situation just may end up becoming quite symbolic in a larger context. Watch.
Neighborhood watch leader George Zimmerman left the Seminole County Jail in Florida a day after a judge granted a $1 million bail bond with strict conditions. This is the second time Zimmerman has been released from prison. The last time was in April. He awaits his second-degree murder trial for fatally shooting Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder and claims the shooting was self-defense under the state's "stand your ground" law. Zimmerman is required to stay in Seminole County. Lots of comment activity on this one!
They need to get that trial going and get it over with. … All Zimmerman did was take out a future Criminal. What’s the big deal? … How many times does this murderer get out? Only in this country could (someone) murder a young black lad and walk out of jail. … Our legal system is all about the money. … There is nothing in this country that money can't fix. …
I'm perplexed at the viciousness that is meeting Zimmerman when the only thing he UNAMBIGUOUSLY DID WRONG was determine someone was "suspicious" because they looked a certain way. Yes, I don't like that at all. … Assuming he wins in court, am I alone in thinking that Zimmerman gets rich on a book deal, donations, and other publicity events? This story is a tale of two martyrs in a binary political world. … Since when does someone get a million dollar bail for a second degree murder charge in what is probably an act of self-defense?
We see here that race continue to play a big part in politics. While, apparently, several caucuses walked out; the black caucus is most frequently mentioned in the comment-sphere (due in part to Holder's race as well?) This spotlight is telling. As people test more boundaries in this new age, watch for more "unprecedented" scenes to take place. But hey, wonder where people go after they "walk out"? What's protocol? Hmmmm......
Members of the Congressional Black, Hispanic, Asian Pacific American and Progressive Caucuses, as well as other members, walked off of the floor at the House of Representatives as members voted 255-67 to hold Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress. This move is said to have been unprecedented. The reason for this action is Holder's refusal to meet Republican demands to hand over documents that could explain what happened during the “Fast and Furious” operation, which resulted in hundreds of guns smuggled in Mexico. Next is a separate vote on civil contempt to allow the House to go to court in an effort to force Holder to turn over the documents. But what do people think when Congressional Caucus and race collide?
f you lie to Congress NO matter what the color of your skin;NO man is above the law. … Here we go, pulling the race card. It’s normal for the Obama supporters. Pull that race card. The truth hurts that Holder is a black crooked racists. … Racism is still alive even in Congress. If you disagree with Blacks on any issue you are considered as racist, so sad. They have to learn more what MLK said.
Any of them, Republican or Democrat, who still believes in Democracy and Freedom needs to walk out. Refuse to participate in the charade. This is about patriotism. Those who would do this are patriots. … They're playing right into the Republicans' hands. Republicans will bill a black caucus walk out as "playing the race card" once again and Democrats will probably wind up doing what they always do -- concede to the Republicans and end up condemning their own members for walking out instead of condemning the Republicans for blatant politicization of this issue to take the focus off the real issues in an election year...
I wonder how the families of the hundreds murdered by this deliberate plot to gin up gun violence feel about the walkout. … The black caucus walking out is so mature and professional? …? Everyone of these members of Congress should be impeached. A sorrier bunch of Congress I have never seen. … If only they would walk out and stay out. … Is Michelle proud of her country now?
As the summer heats up so, too, do the conversations regarding race, seemingly. No matter that Scott is known for "statement" making clothing and accessories, America is quite sensitive to all matters regarding race. What will be interesting to watch is whether or not Adidas does more to "apologize." In the meantime, it will have to think of another way to compete with Kanye's help over at Nike, huh?
Adidas had planned to launch what it thought was a popular new sneaker via the creative direction of outlandish fashion designer Jeremy Scott. The sneakers' ankle shackles were supposed to be 'edgy,' but to many people, they implied slavery, instead. Adidas seemed to have read the mountain of criticism against its new sneaker and decided to backtrack. Adidas issued a statement: "We apologize if people are offended by the design." Criticism was not totally unanimous. The photo received over 38,000 likes on Facebook. And that's not the only place opinions were voiced.
Good gravy. Welcome to the laws of supply and demand; if you hate them, just don't freakin' buy them... If enough people buy them for them to last, they probably weren't all that offensive to begin with. Tired of the hypersensitive determining what does and does not go on the "open" market and making other people's decisions for them in advance.