As you already know, Will Smith slapped Oscars presenter and comedian Chris Rock Sunday night at the Academy Awards after Rock made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair loss. Rock refused to file assault charges, and Smith went on to give a tearful acceptance speech for the Best Actor Oscar. Now, on Monday, we’re watching the woke media picking sides in the fight: Was Smith out of line to resort to actual violence? Or was Rock out of line with his joke? Here’s the Los Angeles Times’ take:

“But his instinct to protect his Black wife….” We didn’t know that hair jokes were such a problem in the black community, but Forbes is asking the tough questions: Why are jokes always at the expense of black women?

Janice Gassam Asare, who helps create strategies for more diversity, equity, and inclusion, writes:

When reflecting on the incident between Smith and Rock, some on social media have used words like “extreme,” “excessive” and “violent” to describe Smith’s reaction. Some may say it was “just a joke” but why are jokes always at the expense of Black women? America’s favorite public sport is berating Black women; it has become social currency. There is a long history of Black women and femmes being dishonored, disrespected, denigrated, and degraded, especially within Hollywood. Misogynoir and the media go hand in hand.

One of the most blatant and obvious displays of this was what the world witnessed during the Supreme Court confirmation hearings of Ketanji Brown Jackson. Despite the fact that Brown Jackson is highly accomplished and credentialed (more so than her counterparts) critics have questioned her capabilities. Several U.S. presidents have gone to Ivy League institutions through nepotism and have earned mediocre grades yet they have not experienced the same levels of scrutiny as Brown Jackson and others like her and it’s very obvious as to why that is.

What “jokes” were made about Ketanji Brown Jackson, except her joke of a sentence on child porn charges?

It looks like they have.

Ricky Gervais got around that problem by making jokes about everyone, and it was great.

What an absolutely idiotic take. Let’s hear more:

Many of us are socialized to believe that there is no time and place for Black anger or emotion, especially not in front of non-Black people. By saying that Will Smith shouldn’t have reacted that way because of how he will be perceived by the largely white audience is the white gaze personified. We must understand that respectability will not and has not saved Black people. This article is not an interrogation of violence, when, where, or if it is appropriate to use, or the like. This article is more so an invitation to consider why Black women always have to be the butt of every joke.

Every joke. OK.


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