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Category: Race

Immigration through the Lens of My Heritage

I have yet to come across an American who wants wide open borders. I don’t know of any informed citizen who isn’t worried about immigration policy or who doesn’t understand we’re in crisis mode in this area. This is the common ground. Virtually all of us are aligned on this. But this is not the commonly held belief in our country. The more prevalent thought is that, generally speaking, liberals think we should just let everyone in without process. Time and again, on conservative media and from the mouth of the President at his rallies, we hear that the...

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Unpacking the Notion of Racism by Association

Have you ever been in a group of people who, when you leave the room, shortly thereafter bring down the volume on their conversation? That happened to me recently. I could still hear them through the closed door. No, they weren’t talking about me. They were taking advantage of my absence to talk freely about something involving race. No ‘N’ word. Nothing vile. More like casual commentary on how overblown racism is. I confess my eyes filled up. I felt my difference in that moment. I didn’t fully understand why I should be proud instead of hurt until I...

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An Actor, an NFL Player and September Dreams

I was going to write this two days ago, but I was too busy devoting time to one of my “money” jobs. As the house manager for an acting and dance studio in Manhattan, I’m in the process of booking people for fall and winter classes, workshops, performances, and shoots. Happily deluged, one might say, since getting back from vacation. But here’s the real point: Yes, I work “money” jobs. You know, the kind that people were shaming former Cosby Show actor Geoffrey Owens for when he was “outed” recently at a local Trader Joe’s. Funny thing is, last...

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Bee and Barr: Parsing What Offends

It seems while I was off-grid attending to a personal family matter yesterday, all Full Frontal hell broke loose. In the spirit of full disclosure, I was sitting in Samantha Bee’s audience less than a month ago reveling in the vulgarity of it all. I enjoyed comedian Allana Harkin’s sometimes salty warmup. Then, when the show began, Bee’s delivery of jokes was sharp and stinging, just the way I’d loved from back in her days on The Daily Show. That’s fact No. 1. Now here’s fact No. 2 – as comfortable as I am with the word “fuck,” I...

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Roseanne and the ‘Nuance’ of the Trump Supporter

These days, I am so sick of Donald Trump that I have long stopped watching shows I’ve always found relaxing such as The Daily Show and most other comedy-based late-night programs. It’s worth mentioning they are hosted by people I admire and their world views align pretty closely with mine. Most nights I’d rather see Rachel and Ross argue over whether they were on a break for the 85th time than hear Trump’s name coming out of my TV yet again, even in tightly written lines delivered by masters of comedic timing. So the idea of watching a reboot of Roseanne Barr’s show held zero appeal for me. I never watched it the first time around and I certainly wasn’t up for her droning on about how gosh-darn-fantastic the President is under the guise of fiction. I did, however, understand the appeal to Trump’s base given the dearth of conservative comedy out there (Dennis Miller and ???). But ABC’s cancellation of the second season of Roseanne today has stopped me in my tracks for a specific reason – its attempt to show the nuance of the Trump supporter has backfired. It has, in fact, reinforced what many citizens have been saying all along. The cancellation came on the heels of the non-fictional version of Roseanne writing this Tweet about former White House aide Valerie Jarrett: “Muslim brotherhood & planet...

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