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Racism and racial representation on soaps


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37 minutes ago, Darn said:

She says for people  (the black audience, which CBS was surprised to learn counted for a considerable portion of Y&R's viewership) to stop watching because advertising dollars matter more than a handful of actors speaking out.

 

Exactly.  Nothing talks louder to these suits than money.  Nothing.

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25 minutes ago, Fevuh said:

I just don't agree with VR's take on her Y&R obsession and I don't even know why she would want to go back.  She's worked since.  Other actors haven't said anything.  She should be imploring them to say how bad their work situation is.  

 

If you just said this, you would have been better off. I don't understand why VR would want to return to Y&R if she was so mistreated. I wonder why other actors have not also spoken out. I believe VR should try and get others to speak out as well. She's also worked since leaving Y&R so I'm not sure why she asks to be brought back.

 

I don't want to make it seem like you can't have an opinion on the VR situation, because you definitely can and you are entitled to it. But as a white male (as you claimed), saying that you don't understand why VR is the only one complaining and that she must be a troublemaker because she's the only AA saying anything is problematic. Do you think that maybe other AA actors that have faced injustices on Y&R or other shows don't speak up because there isn't much room for AA on TV as it is and speaking up may cost them their career. Sure it's easy to say Shemar has been quiet but he's been working in pretty high profile jobs and being the outspoken AA might not get you the job. 

19 minutes ago, Khan said:

 

This one's for you, and for the others in the back:  WHITE PRIVILEGE HAS ABSOLUTELY NOTHING AT ALL TO DO WITH FINANCIAL STATUS.  You could live on the streets of NYC in a cardboard box, with an old pickle jar for a toilet, and you're still gonna be treated differently (and better) than a Black man living under the exact same conditions.  White privilege and economic inequality only intersect when White America tells us that the reason why we aren't as wealthy as our Caucasian counterparts is because we aren't working hard enough; when, in fact, it's because your skin color has allowed you distinct advantages in the business world that ours never do.

 

And for God's sake, PLEASE spare us ALL any further talk of how being harassed by law enforcement on account of your Black bf helps you understand our situation better.  If anything, your ex should be the one sharing these experiences of how systemic racism has affected his life, not you.

 

I don't care how many times you've seen one of us harassed and/or threatened by cops for no reason.  I don't care how many (Black) men you've dated, or how many Black families you lived next to while growing up.  You could be Navin P. Johnson, for all I care, but unless you were born and have lived your entire life AS a Black man, you have No. Idea.

This. This is what I was trying to explain to @Fevuh

Edited by GLATWT88
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15 minutes ago, GLATWT88 said:

 

This is a clear example of white privilege. The fact that it bothers you that a black woman continues to talk about the injustices and poor treatment on a TV show because of the color of her skin. White people don't have to worry about finding representation on mainstream media, because they are well represented. They have plenty of space where they can find roles, where casting directors look like them, where execs look like them, etc. You have the privilege of being bothered by someone else's injustice instead of being directly impacted by it. 

 

Also, white privilege doesn't mean you didn't have a hard life or you didn't struggle. You can have white privilege and be poor, homeless, faced discrimination based on your sexual orientation, etc. There is a huge misunderstanding of the term. White privilege means that you didn't have to struggle or endure injustices because of the color of your skin. You yourself sad the cop only pulled you over because of your AA boyfriend, so you agree that race plays a significant role on the perceptions individuals have of certain people. America was a country founded on slavery and those roots of oppression have a hold on our country for its entire history and until there is healing, awareness and understanding things will change very slowly. Slavery and segregation didn't cease to exist in this country and then suddenly we didn't have a race problem. Forms of violence against AA people have been committed in more subtle ways or not so subtle such as disproportionate police brutality cases. 

 

Thank you for the energy you put in this post because I'm too tired to explain these things to some folks.  It's actually exhausting some times.

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37 minutes ago, Forever8 said:

I see the Racism and Racial Representation page has a new meaning. 

 

It always does whenever VR's name enters the conversation.  She's polarizing, to put it VERY mildly. 

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18 minutes ago, GLATWT88 said:

This is a clear example of white privilege. The fact that it bothers you that a black woman continues to talk about the injustices and poor treatment on a TV show because of the color of her skin. White people don't have to worry about finding representation on mainstream media, because they are well represented. They have plenty of space where they can find roles, where casting directors look like them, where execs look like them, etc. You have the privilege of being bothered by someone else's injustice instead of being directly impacted by it. 

 

Slavery and segregation didn't cease to exist in this country and then suddenly we didn't have a race problem. Forms of violence against AA people have been committed in more subtle ways or not so subtle such as disproportionate police brutality cases. 

 

YES.  PREACH.

 

17 minutes ago, ReddFoxx said:

First off not everyone handles things the same. Some black actors and actresses will just refrain from saying anything because they want to work.

 

Or, they decide to play the game, so to speak, until they are in a position where they can tell the (white) producers and network/studio execs to shove it.  

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It's not that VR's battles have gotten old: it's that she pioneered the battles many people are fighting today. 

 

I have to say, I really admire the woman. When she first called the show out, I believed her but not completely. I vividly remember her addressing the importance of having AA hairdressers who knew how to style a certain type of hair. That struck me, she definitely had a point.

 

At the same time, I also thought that involving an actor in the writing process could create a conflict of interest. I also remember very well PB's interview where he said "she doesn't play with a full deck of cards". I remember it because it was the very first time I heard the expression, I thought it sounded funny. I did think she must have been as eccentric as Drucilla and I tossed aside most of her complaints. 

 

Well, growing up I realized over time she was completely right. 100%. Hell, let this woman even write the character if she wishes. I felt awful for not realizing sooner and I promised myself I would never toss aside anyone's complaints, especially coming from a minority.

 

I think it makes total sense that VR is calling out the show all the time and still she's campaigning to be brought back. I don't see the contradiction, at all. Drucilla is sorely needed. It's appalling what happened to her, to MM, Tyler, Leslie. It's not a coincidence. I'm really hoping VR and other black artists can ride the momentum.

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2 hours ago, Fevuh said:

And this is why white people are not speaking out.  If we speak out, we don't have the right because we're not black.  

There wasn’t a sign at one of those protests you were at explaining this?

 

White privilege doesn’t mean your life hasn’t been hard- it means your life isn’t hard because of being white.

 

I am also gay.  We are a marginalized group.  However, there is no comparison to the experiences of POC.  And we have members of our own community that are facing the normal homophobia and transphobia while also fighting against racism.  And white gays have systemically ignored or brushed aside our own people that need our support.

 

I watched several interviews with Ellen Holly this week.  My perspective has changed on her.  I always believed her, but she seemed to be unhealthy about her past.  Now I think- How would I feel if I had been treated unfairly at so many times during formative years in my life and career?  It would be hard to not be broken or angry, or both.

 

 

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I haven't always thought everything Holly said was fair. But that doesn't really matter in the scheme here because on one level or another, literal or figurative, it's all true, most of it absolutely factually so. You don't have to watch her or read her book for longer than two minutes. It's what she lived and she'd been suffering with it for decades. We didn't have as clear a light shone on it in years past but we do now. Just because we as a removed audience can now see her onscreen wedding with Arthur Burghardt as described shot for shot in her book years ago, or hear corroboration of many of Vicky Rowell or Kristoff St. John's experiences at CBS from other performers of color, doesn't mean they haven't had to live with those wounds for decades before we could know it for ourselves.

 

On a side note: I am still deep in the Loving Murders of 1995, which I hadn't seen since childhood, and it's still unbelievable that a frontburner black canvas of six people is more active, vibrant and central than any show's black cast twenty five years later.

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At the risk of sounding sanctimonious, I had little problem believing both Ellen Holly and Victoria Rowell's accounts when I first read/heard them.  Perhaps it was my own personal experience as a black woman, experiencing micro-aggressions before an official definition even came into being.  Experiencing condescension masquerading as complements. Being denied opportunities then finding out months, sometimes years later that my white male colleagues asked for the same thing and were granted their requests with no discernible reason why. 

 

My only issue with VR was that, I knew that the more she talked, the more alienation she would experience. Peter Bergman's insinuation about her mental stability, being just one example. I'd witnessed some women and black women, in particularly, being labeled either crazy or hysterical, if they were insistent in their outspokenness. It made me uncomfortable to watch this unfold because I recognized her talent and realized the penalty that she'd likely pay would blowback on her career prospects.  I'm so glad she didn't care what I or anyone else thought and kept speaking out. She has come out on the other end looking a lot better than many of her colleagues who criticized her.

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51 minutes ago, Vee said:

 

 

On a side note: I am still deep in the Loving Murders of 1995, which I hadn't seen since childhood, and it's still unbelievable that a frontburner black canvas of six people is more active, vibrant and central than any show's black cast twenty five years later.

On a half hour show no less!

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1 minute ago, titan1978 said:

On a half hour show no less!

 

I swear I was about to post the SAME THING!

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26 minutes ago, DramatistDreamer said:

At the risk of sounding sanctimonious, I had little problem believing both Ellen Holly and Victoria Rowell's accounts when I first read/heard them.  Perhaps it was my own personal experience as a black woman, experiencing micro-aggressions before an official definition even came into being.  Experiencing condescension masquerading as complements. Being denied opportunities then finding out months, sometimes years later that my white male colleagues asked for the same thing and were granted their requests with no discernible reason why. 

 

My only issue with VR was that, I knew that the more she talked, the more alienation she would experience. Peter Bergman's insinuation about her mental stability, being just one example. I'd witnessed some women and black women, in particularly, being labeled either crazy or hysterical, if they were insistent in their outspokenness. It made me uncomfortable to watch this unfold because I recognized her talent and realized the penalty that she'd likely pay would blowback on her career prospects.  I'm so glad she didn't care what I or anyone else thought and kept speaking out. She has come out on the other end looking a lot better than many of her colleagues who criticized her.

I've said this before, I wish there was a like function because there's not much I can add but I agree with your post. I also feel VR has received so much backlash (more so) for speaking out because she is a woman and then the idea that she's just bitter because she keeps fighting the issue. 

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11 minutes ago, Darn said:

 

I swear I was about to post the SAME THING!

When was the last time any of these shows had that many black characters that were actually important to the entire fabric of the show?  Generations?

 

In so many ways, the period of time with the Loving Murders (leading into The City), is some of the most modern storytelling I have seen on any of these soaps.  It’s feels more like the primetime element the networks, especially ABC are always chasing, and they already had it!

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Peter Bergman is a mediocre actor who has been treated as if he is a powerhouse, so he is privilege personified. Besides he can't call anyone crazy considering that fight he had with Eric Braeden. That's unstable.

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