Why is Michael B. Jordan apologizing to black women?
So an interview was done on Michael B. Jordan by GQ magazine. Boy didn’t his comments rub some black women the wrong way.
First let’s begin with the drama over him allegedly dating Kendall Jenner… The comments below chocked up some women:
"It’s the world we live in. They see white and black. I don’t. Kendall’s a friend of mine, you know. People’s perspective on that is what it is. I don’t f**king know. I don’t live my life to make other people happy. It’s so weird, though, right? A lot of black fans were feeling like, ‘Oh, my God, he should have been with a black woman’ and that whole thing. I get it, but on the other hand it’s, like, relax. You know—it’s 2015. It’s okay! People can like one another, not necessarily from the same history or culture or whatever the f**k it is. It’s just the new world, you know what I mean?"
Yes. It is the new world. Ok. Why people were chocking over this is quite a misery to me. I’d be rich if I got a penny for the phrase “Its 2015” in relation to some backlash over some black celebrity dating outside their race. And what’s even worse, is how shallow we are to the extent of letting mere unconfirmed allegations make some people act the way they do on social media – not that its ok to react negatively over confirmed rumors about some celeb dating interracially. So there goes my penny.. . “ITS 2015 for F**ks sake!!!”
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And then there was his response about him taking on white men's roles in some of his films:
"I want to be part of that movement that blurs the line between white and black. I told my team after I finished Chronicle that I only want to go out for roles that were written for white characters. Me playing the role will make it what it is."
And on top of all that, the major backlash was over a recent Snapchat he posted where he said he believes #AllLivesMatter.
Dude has decided to challenge himself by taking on roles meant for whites because he feels he can deliver just as much. Dude has decided “not to see color”. Taking that literally, like it means he has chosen to neglect the black women who have always supported his career, isn’t really bright. Why the media firestorm when we all know exactly what he meant: People are people. Color shouldn’t drive out choices when it comes to those we relate to. At the same time, if the opportunity to shine presents itself, I think one should be free to go for it... Black roles, White roles, Asian roles...
Just the other day, the black community - black women especially, celebrated their first Emmy's top acting award - Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series won by Viola Davis. And what did she talk about? The lack of opportunities for the black folks.
Jordan here has opportunity. When he takes it, we fault him? I think this kind of mentality is regressive to say the least.
Well, below is the letter Jordan sent to Essence.com apologizing to people whose toes he was accused of stepping on. Some thought he wasn’t sincere. I am thinking: Why was he apologizing again? Who is with me?
"I have been a professional actor for most of my life, but being regarded as a leading man is new to me and has taken some getting used to. Recently I had the opportunity to be featured on the cover of one of my favorite magazines. In the interview, several points that I shared were communicated in ways that do not reflect my true feelings and opinions. In addition, there were reports written about me elsewhere that simply aren't true. I’d like to set the record straight.
First and foremost, I believe that Black Lives Matter - unequivocally and without exception. I have never said, written, snapchatted, tweeted, Instagrammed or implied anything to the contrary. Any report that states otherwise is a complete fabrication. I portrayed Oscar Grant in my first leading role in a feature film, Fruitvale Station. I am a founding member of the Blackout for Human Rights Network. I gave a speech just a few months ago on the importance of the Black Lives Matter Movement at the BET Awards. It is frustrating to see a false claim stirred up on social media which has caused my supporters to question where I stand on this crucial issue. But I am confident that my history and continued engagement with my community will speak louder than unfounded rumors.
Secondly, it is challenging to have a nuanced conversation about race and Hollywood period. This sensitive subject becomes even more complicated when you’re dealing with soundbites and articles. A simple idea or opinion can be abbreviated and distorted as it is communicated to readers out of context. Allow me to be clear about my ideas on roles traditionally reserved for White actors. My goal is for my choices and opportunities, as well as those of my fellow actors and actresses of color, to be predicated on our talent, ability and passion and not on false notions of what color an artist must be to play certain roles. I've had the honor to portray Black characters written and directed by Black filmmakers—a privilege that too few actors of color enjoy because of the challenges of Black artistry and access behind the camera. But in addition to those wonderful roles, I also want to have the option to play all kinds of parts with no door closed to actors and actresses like myself.
Lastly, my fans who are women mean the world to me. This is especially true of Black women, who as a group have supported my work long before the industry knew my name. I deeply regret and am ashamed that I said anything to disappoint or disparage them. I apologize with my whole heart for referring to women in the way that I did. The word 'female' used in the manner that I did is dismissive and strips women of their humanity. It is a slang term that guys sometimes use to sound slick and cool coming up. But words have power and I realize now more than ever that this careless language is dehumanizing, inappropriate, and immature. I'm a better man than that. This reference to women will not come out of my mouth publicly or in private again.
In all, although some of what I said was taken out of context, I take full responsibility for the interview and I apologize for the hurt and confusion it has caused. This has been an important lesson for me. I humbly ask my fans to grow with me, as I learn more about myself and this industry.
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