Wednesday, April 18, 2012

White privilege: More than an inconvenience

'Girls' Writer Responds to Critique of 'Girls' with Horrible Joke

So just to make this clear for everyone: White woman writes a show about white women and their fascinating lives (I know! It's never been done before!). Said show is criticized for not including more a diverse representation of women. White woman then claims that non-white people who have a problem with white privilege are just whining. Did you get the joke? I sure did. I  just didn't think it was funny.

Why is it that every time white people are called out on their racism they react by accusing non-white people of whining? It's the same thing men do to women when we point out their sexism. According to Arfin, if a person of colour expects to be included as well as fairly and accurately represented in the media, they are asking for too much.

 "Arfin thinks she would never actually interact with a person like Precious." 

And this is the kicker, folks. I doubt Afrin believes black people could ever exist in a world like hers. And she finds it annoying or inconvenient when this is pointed out to her. It's such a shame that she has to be inconvenienced by all that nasty talk of race that gets in the way the real point of her show, which is about white women in NYC to the exclusion of everyone else.

Jenna Wortham had it right in pointing out that this show could be so much more than it is, if only it could get past the problem that has been plaguing shows like it for decades; a complete erasure of persons of colour from mainstream television and media in roles that go beyond stereotypes. It's the same problem that was brought up following the popularity of the film The Help. The roles for black women in media have barely changed in 50 years, yet white writers and producers continue to dig their heads in the sand and trivialize the concerns of the people who dare to question why the cast is all white. Or the refusal to cast non-white people in non-white roles. This sort of silly race stuff is just inconvenient.