Rio Hondo College Newspaper

El Paisano

Oscars An All White Party?

Rafael+Alvarado
Rafael Alvarado

Rafael Alvarado

Aaron Martinez

Aaron Martinez

Rafael Alvarado

Rafael Alvarado, Staff Writer

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As a Mexican-American I already see the lack of people of color being represented in media everywhere I go. I want the lack of representation in media to change and I became very upset when the Oscar nominees were announced.

I should not have been so offended or stunned after all white males dominate the filmmaking industry leaving people of color to be unrecognized.

A simple google search for a list of black academy award winners can reveal a lot about the academy’s preferences based on the majority of previous nominations and winners being white. Not to mention members of the academy are primarily old white male voters.

That does not necessarily implicate the academy is “discriminatory” but biased. During the eighty-eight years of the Academy Awards, fourteen men and women of color have been awarded Oscars. In the categories of Best Actor/Actress in a leading role, and Best Actor/Actress in a supporting role.

Blacks have not won an Oscar under the category of Best Director, but three people of color have been nominated. I see the Academy’s exclusion as a huge problem because there’s currently been a trend of Hollywood using diverse people that are disabled or ethnic, as propaganda to attract consumers to their product.

However, with the big budget, films inclusion of “diverse” people is hardly seen. Everyone desires to be acknowledged for their hard work and the Oscars for minorities is a physical acknowledgement of their hard work.

Watching these stereotypes play out disgusts me and makes the film or show less enjoyable to watch, especially, when whites get the praise for what minorities can do equivalently or even better than whites.”

The lack of roles with significant, charm, emotion, and character are not considered for minorities. The roles offered to minorities are insignificant because minority actors are given these roles without a choice.

Minorities are type casted into a stereotype that is unbreakable because minorities are seen as “unfit” for other roles. For instance, when a minority is watching television or a film they are met with terrorists, cholos, drug dealers, murderers, martial arts, janitor, or an “angry black person” etc. stereotype.

Many minorities feel limited to what they can be. The classical stereotype representation is the only one minorities have in mainstream media and the stereotype representation raises the question of why be represented at all.

Watching these stereotypes play out disgusts me and makes the film or show less enjoyable to watch, especially, when whites get the praise for what minorities can do equivalently or even better than whites.

Whites dominate the filmmaking industry leaving people of color to be unrecognized of their potential award winning performances. Google provides information that supports my statements about minorities not being considered in the Oscars for their roles. Revealing a lot about the white academy’s preferences based on the majority of previous nominations.

Hollywood needs more writers that can express the art of the modern world. There is little to no representation for people of color on screen. If minorities have come along way as a country to abolish segregation or any “racial” conflict why doesn’t it feel that way about the academy?

It does not feel that way because minorities are still fighting a battle of representation and equality. Minorities will continue to fight exclusion until change is explicitly demonstrated because until then minorities will continue to be considered the lesser people.

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Oscars An All White Party?