Actress Zoe Saldana has been inserting the proverbial foot in her mouth in recent weeks. The “Colombiana” starlet has been media blitzing for the upcoming “Star Trek Into Darkness” film and leaving a trail of disrespect in her wake. A fellow Clutch editor, Yesha Callahan, thinks Saldana needs a dictionary and a clue. I concur and also think she needs to enroll in an Introduction to Critical Race Theory course ASAP.
During an interview with BET, Saldana candidly discussed how she views race, alleging “there’s no such as people of color.”
When asked how she racially-identifies, Saldana responded:
I find it uncomfortable to have to speak about my identity all of the time, when in reality it’s not something that drives me or wakes me up out of bed everyday. I didn’t grow up in a household where I was categorized by my mother. I was just Zoe and I could have and be anything that I ever wanted to do…and every human being is the same as you. So to all of a sudden leave your household and have people always ask you, “What are you, what are you” is the most uncomfortable question and it’s literally the most repetitive question. I can’t wait to be in a world where people are sized by their soul and how much they can contribute as individuals and not what they look like.
She wasn’t done retorting.
I literally run away from people that use words like ethnic. It’s preposterous! To me there is no such thing as people of color cause in reality people aren’t white. Paper is white. People are pink, it’s a bit ridiculous when I have to explain to a human being, that is an adult like I am, that looks intelligent but for some reason I have to question his intelligence and explain to him as if he was a two year old, my composition in order for him to say, “Oh I guess I can chill with you, I can work with you.” I will not underestimate a human being and I will not allow another human being to underestimate me. I feel like as a race, that’s a minute problem against the problems we face just as women versus men, in a world that’s more geared and designed to cater towards the male species.
That is a situation that, I spend time thinking about, and working towards ending that, I guess we could talk about that.
Saldana’s decision to accept the role of Nina Simone as a labor of “love” makes her view of race and racism all the more puzzling. It appears as if donning Blackface and depicting Simone has done little to connect the actress with the crooner’s spirit. You can’t portray Nina Simone without realizing how intricately race was intertwined with her life and career.
In fact, communities of color must contend with race and racism daily, from the school-to-prison pipeline to the slow siphoning of resources from our schools. But I guess for women like Saldana, we’re post-racial, Simone’s legacy be-damned.
Maybe the ultimate fixer, Olivia Pope Kerry Washington, can hip her fellow thespian to the truth about post-racial fantasies.