Movie industry stars like Jada Pinkett Smith and Spike Lee are openly boycotting the Oscars this year for being much too whitewashed.
And let's be perfectly honest. Idris Elba being overlooked for Beasts of No Nation is just absolutely wrong.
Recently, Jada Pinkett Smith released this video to express her frustration and distaste for the Academy:
Janet Hubert, who played the original Aunt Viv from Will Smith's show The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, gave her two cents as well in the following video released yesterday on YouTube:
The 60-year-old actress started her rant by saying:
"First of all, Miss. Thing does your man not have a mouth of his own with which to speak?"
Ouch. But that is just the beginning of her angry tirade directed towards Jada Pinkett Smith. Let me tell you: she doesn't hold back.
"The second thing, girlfriend, there's a lot of s--- going on in the world that you all don't seem to recognize. People are dying. Our boys are being shot left and right. People are starving. People are trying to pay bills. And you're talking about some motherf---ing actors and Oscars. It just ain't that deep."
"And here's the other thing, for you to ask other actors, and other black actresses and actors, too, to jeopardize their career and their standing in a town that you know damn well you don't do that."
"And here's the other thing – they don't care. They don't care! And I find it ironic that somebody who has made their living, and made millions and millions of dollars from the very people you're talking about boycotting just because you didn't get a nomination, just because you didn't win."
Some might think Hubert might be going off due to bitterness of being booted off The Fresh Prince of Bel Air's show back in the day, but I personally think both Pinkett Smith and Hubert have merit to their words.
Yes, black men and women are dying at the hands of racist cops. Yes, many are struggling just to provide food and shelter for their children. And while this is a major issue that needs to be addressed and change instantly, that doesn't mean we can't simultaneously fight for proper representation in the film industry.
I remember loving Princess Jasmine from Aladdin because it was the first time I saw an Arab on the screen. While she may be "just" a cartoon, it was refreshing to see someone I related to and looked like instead of the typical blonde haired, blue-eyed actresses on the screen.
We need children to grow up seeing all kinds of races, sexualities, and ages. TV shows and films are a staple in most people's lives, and we can learn to be more accepting and more understanding of each other when telling everyone's stories... not just white people's.