In 2015 the US Census Bureau estimated that there are 46,282,080 African Americans living in the United States.
Quite interestingly, as proponents of racial diversity within entertainment celebrate the arrivals of a new batch of “melanated” Hollywood stars, some industry insiders have made an interesting observation.
Most of them are British.
This week, after Samuel L. Jackson took to Hot 97 to reveal why he believes movie studios are overlooking African-American actors to hire Black British actors when casting, the debate surrounding why this may be continues to heat up online.
Daniel Kaluuya, the star of the hit movie ‘Get Out‘ had this to say about it in response to Jackson’s remarks:
Unfortunately, despite receiving praise for his response, there are some who feel it did little to explain how the legacy and trauma hinders actors of colour seeking work in an industry stained with tales of racism.
All blacks may go through the same discrimination, but discrimination on the basis of race in itself is not racism in its entirety. It is one aspect. It is a side effect. The fact of the matter is that all black people do not have have the same experience. A black person from the U.K. with parents, grand parents, or great grandparents that immigrated from Africa, knowing the exact country from which they are from, cannot identify with the African American experience. Period. It is not the same. Like he said, you can empathize. You can try to put yourself in our shoes. But that’s where your understanding ends. You don’t have the historical baggage in a comparable degree and you don’t have an erased ethnic identity. I’m not going to go into detail because it’ll take too long but while black people in the Caribbean and South America have more similar experiences, though we share differences as well, such as black people being a minority in the US and the Catholic Church’s jurisdiction rather than the crown. Who colonized the country also altered the way the people in that specific country experienced their oppression. Whether it was Spanish. Portuguese. French. Dutch. British. The African-American experience is different from the African-Latino experince is different from the African experience is different from the Daniel Kaluuya experience.