A disturbingly racist portrayal of America's 44th President is a step backwards after he was elected to the joy of many when it was hailed as a step forward in the politics of race.
I really don't understand this. The first time I saw it was appalled. I was appalled because I have a young African American friend who auditioned for this role on SNL. Am I supposed to believe that they couldn't find one African American who was "funny enough" to portray the first African American President of the United States? While the US took a step forward in electing him, Saturday Night Live and NBC have taken a step backwards in having a white man portray the President in Blackface makeup. Sadly when I brought this up to some people I had a lot of them defending the portrayal. One person said "Obama is of mixed race". Well that's fine, so why not get someone of mixed African and Caucasian descent to portray him? The world celebrated the first black president and African Americans across the country did too. So why this resoundingly racist portrayal? Does Fred Armisen think it's funny that a black man is so well educated and such an eloquent speaker because he's black? That's what he mocks. Do I think that this portrayal would bother the President himself? Probably not, let's face it, he's the commander in chief. But it bothers me and it bothers some of my black friends. Yet most of my white friends don't bat and eye and even defend it. It boggles my mind.
Racism occurs in Hollywood when an actor is considered not right for the part because of their ethnicity. Bruce Lee came up with the idea of the TV show "Kung Fu" but it was given to David Carradine because Bruce Lee was too Asian. Can you IMAGINE how much cooler that show would have been if it was Bruce Lee as the hero? We lost out on a whole body of work that the great Bruce Lee could have given us, as you probably know his life was tragically short and the amount of work he produced in that time although truly outstanding (including kicking the living shit out of Chuck Norris) is relatively small compared to say, Steven Seagal who makes a movie every time he makes a turd.
Pictured: "Too Asian"
Pictured: Juuuuuust Right
In the last century it was also common for white actors to portray besides Asians, Native Americans.
Pictured: Not A Native American, A man named "Henry Brandon"
Also coming up is a sure to be crap-fest staring Jake Gylenhall as an honest to goodness Persian Prince! How about that! Why would you hire a real life person of Iranian descent when you have such a powerful box-office draw as another white kid who works out and the little girls like him! His wikipedia page says he's descended from Sweedish royalty so at least they got the royalty part right! And he considers himself "more Jewish than anything else". Yeah!
Pictured: A Sweedish Jewish Iranian Prince.