Racism in the Media: Update

Open Letters

In an interesting twist of events, a recent article has clarified some big misconceptions about the GAP Kids ad that was deemed racist by many in the Twittersphere. I wrote an article about it here and am happy, or sad (depending) to see that as I suspected, more information is really what people should be looking for … before leveling huge charges and accusations of racism.

Turns out that the two girls ‘oppressing’ each other are SISTERS. One black, one white. This reflects my initial discomfort with the way adult internet users were labeling this young woman as a victim without knowing her story or hearing from her.

The article clarifying this mysterious ‘new’ detail can be found here.

As I said previously, I think we need to step back and look at the bigger issue:

Intention versus perception. Perception is subjective.

We bring ourselves to the conversation and our own experience can add new dimensions to  the dialogue. That is not to say that we should ever overlook racism, or any ism. But that facts should factor into our reactions. There is a fine line between willingly choosing to ‘hear or see no evil’ and plugging our ears, covering our eyes and claiming to see, hear and feel it – despite our better judgement, upon a proper weighing of  the facts. Let’s not plug our ears and pretend we are having a productive conversation.

 

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