I watched the Oscars with particular enthusiasm because of the message of diversity. I also enjoy celebrating films as they inspire people with riveting stories while informing people of important issues. However, it was frustrating and infuriating to see that the issue of diversity became a joking manner with Asians, while Hispanics were also overlooked for much of the show.
The Jewish and Asians were the subject of a crude joke about child labor. I have no idea how this routine was approved, but Chris Rock introduced three accountants as children with stereotypical Asian and Jewish names exaggerated in pronunciation. He stated that if anyone was upset with the joke, they could respond using phones made by these children.
Sacha Baron Cohen also joked about Asian stereotypes: “hard-working little yellow people …” followed by the punchline: “You know, the Minions.” Being familiar with his films, I realize this was a failed comedic attempt to raise awareness of stereotypes.
For a night celebrating film-making, these tasteless jokes did nothing for the conversation of promoting diversity through cultural competence. All cultures should be treated with equal respect. Don’t raise awareness on diversity and ridicule other cultures.
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Chih-Chiun Jamie Chang, Fresno