A reflection of the Academy Awards stance on race and a hope that it changes soon.
by Kwesi Cush
The Academy Awards, more commonly known as the Oscars, claim to always mirror society. As the melting pot center of the world, America reins true. But as recent events have shown, some flavors are not accounted for in Hollywood.
In years past, the Oscars were blemished by the lack of ethnic representation in any of the major categories (with the exception of Alejandro G. Iñárritu, the Academy Award-winning director of The Revenant, who is of Mexican descent). Upset by the lack of recognition, many took to social media with their reactions and complaints. This prompted the creation of the #Oscarssowhite which called for an immediate need for equal representation with characters in movies and the people that are a part of the movie-making industry.
Calls to boycott the Oscars came from different actors and actresses within racially marginalized groups arose as a result of last years show. Some of the people apart of the boycott include Jada Pinkett-Smith, Will Smith, Spike Lee, and Snoop Dogg.
This year the Academy chose Chris Rock to host the show. As a black man, we can expect him to comment, joke, and raise awareness on the issue while hosting the controversial show. Rock is no stranger to making controversial statements or jokes as many have seen in his comedy skits.
“Notice that there is more pressure on black people to stop talking about race than it is for racists to stop being racist,” says Rock. “The system doesn’t want racism to end. It just wants you to stop talking about it.”
The 88th Academy Awards come on today at 8:30 pm ET on ABC. Let’s hope actual change has been made and they aren’t sticking to their old ways. It should be a good show.