When good Liberals go bad PT 2: The Onion’s tweet backfires

Posted on February 26, 2013

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Well, at some point I’m gonna need a binder full of so-called  “liberals” effin’ up.

 

For those who don’t know, this young lady was an Academy Award nominee for Best Actress. Her name is Quvenzhané Wallis:

 

Quvenzhané Wallis, my hero

Quvenzhané Wallis, my hero

 

 

The screen grab below has to do with Quvenzhané, and its from the website Jezebel.com

 

 

Actual comments

Actual comments

 

 

 

Now, if that wasn’t bad enough, someone also watching and tweeting for The Onion decided this would be a cool thing to say:

 

 

The tweet that The Onion will always regret

The tweet that The Onion will always regret

 

 

 

Please pay attention to the number of “Favorites” on the tweet. There’s no telling what the final count was before the tweet was deleted more than an hour later, and that was only because the internet was in an uproar over this most inappropriate statement.

 

I think at a time like this, it’s important to take a look at the definition of the the word “Cunt”

 

Merridian Dictionary definition of the word "cunt"

Merridian Dictionary definition of the word “cunt”

 

 

How in the world could someone think saying this was “satire” or “cutting edge” or basically something to tweet about and also click as a “favorite”?

Note the first part of the tweet. And understand, this could have originated with a single individual, whether male or female, or a group think. But to somehow think that “everyone else seems afraid to say it” is bullshit.

Someone at The Onion was chomping at the bit to say it, and he or she or they did. Only, I wonder how eager or “brave” they’d be if their little sister or young female cousin got labeled with an offensive, sexual, downright filthy slang word for a part for the female anatomy that America usually arrests mofo’s for checking out on on the internet (child porn, because let’s face it, Wallis is a child).

And yeah, I know The Onion issued an apology a day later. That seems to be the go-to move these days. But what exactly is the moral of this story, when it shouldn’t have happened in the first place? Sure, the Onion now claims it will put in a number of safeguards so that this doesn’t happen again.

Somehow I don’t have the utmost confidence in them, but the truth is, I didn’t bother with the site and I don’t follow them on twitter. So I’ll have to think up something else to make my anger known at this. I believe there’s a petition, and while I don’t want to see anyone fired, I think a personal apology from the individual or individuals who originated the offending tweet would be in order.

 

But first, if the person who dreamed this stunt up didn’t care for the way Wallis was behaving, okay. . . but I have to ask, THEN WHY COME AT HER LIKE THAT?

 

Which is what a number of bloggers on the internet are asking, like writer nkjeminsin:

 

“And what terrible things did Ms. Wallis do to invite this kind of vitriol?  Oh, just stuff like this:

Just be herself:  talented, happy, pretty, and proud of her achievement.  She didn’t misbehave, she didn’t snark at anyone the way winner Jennifer Lawrence did (and Lawrence was awesome for doing so, but it’s interesting how white girls can get away with being confident more easily than black girls. Isn’t it?).  Ms. Wallis committed the crime of being confident while black and female.  Hey, it happens to all of us, often starting around puberty; I guess Hollywood just decided to start the shaming and systematic tearing-down early.”

Link: http://nkjemisin.com/2013/02/fantasy-fans-wheres-your-outrage/

 

 

And writer/blogger Ann Somerville:

“Children are powerless. They are frequently abused, murdered, raped, exploited, harmed, and treated as possessions. Even Miss Wallis, proud possessor of an Oscar nomination, could theoretically go home and be beaten by her parents with relative impunity. As a black child, she is many more times at risk of abuse and violent death, not to mention the debilitating racism, than white children who are also far from safe in too many homes.

Making a sexualised joke about her is not funny. Calling her a cunt is not funny. The Onion deleted the tweet and have apologised, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t ask why they ever thought it was okay to make that joke in the first place.

And it doesn’t mean I won’t roll my eyes about the white adult guys who decide all for themselves, that outrage over the tenor of the Oscars (which I didn’t watch) or the Onion’s tweet (which I did see in real time) is ‘ridiculous’. The outrage isn’t about whether Miss Wallis or her family read the tweet. It’s about the mentality that makes a black little girl apparently safe fodder for a repulsive comment. It’s about why someone at the Onion didn’t stop and go, ‘wait, she’s a little girl‘. It’s about the fact that the Oscars ceremony was full of off-colour jokes at women’s expense, and not even the pre-pubescent state of one target could save her from that kind of ‘humour’.”

Link: http://logophilos.net/blog/index.php/2013/02/i-was-just-joking/

 

 

Spot. On.

 

 

This post is from Ann Somerville’s blog, and I hope she doesn’t mind me taking a huge chunk of what she’s written, but it’s effin’ brilliant and there’s no way I could have said it better. The same can be said for Jemisin’s opinion on this . . . I can only add, there’s a bunch of people acting as if they have no idea what the issue is. Some are even saying that The Onion apologized, so no harm, no foul.

I even read one comment on another site where someone tried to claim that Wallis must have done something to deserve it.

But see, there’s something about all this that makes me think of all the excuses used when a woman or girl is attacked and sexually assaulted. And what’s sad, is that if children aren’t off limits from this type of “satire” then just what are standards for?

We’ve got brave men and women, of different races, ethnicities and sexual orientations still fighting in Afghanistan. One of the reasons given for the US still being there, is to help “liberate” the women who are oppressed from the terrorists using the Quran to hold them down. That’s all well and good, but if in our homeland, in order to be edgy, jokes at the expense of sexualizing not just a nine year old girl, but at the expense of the female anatomy (I’m talking about Seth MacFarlane at the Oscars) is what’s passing as “entertainment”  then Houston, we’ve got a problem.

 

What someone at the Onion tweeted wasn’t satire. And it certainly wasn’t funny.

 

Like the Lisa Lampanelli tweet controversy, this whole situation is just sad . . .

 

 

Dear Readers,

On behalf of The Onion, I offer my personal apology to Quvenzhané Wallis and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for the tweet that was circulated last night during the Oscars. It was crude and offensive—not to mention inconsistent with The Onion’s commitment to parody and satire, however biting.

No person should be subjected to such a senseless, humorless comment masquerading as satire.

The tweet was taken down within an hour of publication. We have instituted new and tighter Twitter procedures to ensure that this kind of mistake does not occur again.

In addition, we are taking immediate steps to discipline those individuals responsible.

Miss Wallis, you are young and talented and deserve better. All of us at The Onion are deeply sorry.

Sincerely,

Steve Hannah CEO The Onion

Link: http://www.theonion.com/articles/the-onion-apologizes,31434/

 

 

 

UPDATE ***** UPDATE**** UPDATE****

Ay, Mr Hannah, you know where you can start? Get some DIVERSITY in your company. And I’m not talking about a TOKEN who’ll just nod and go along because he or she is scared they’ll lose their job. On second thought, forget it. Because to hire someone of color now that the website is taking heat would just be TOO LITTLE AND TOO DAMN LATE:

 

Harry Smith is with the Onion Editorial crew as they discuss content prior to the Oscar Broadcast. This was either already shown or will be shown on Rock Center.

Harry Smith is with The Onion Editorial crew as they discuss content prior to the Oscar Broadcast. This was shown on Rock Center March 1, 2013

 

 

I want to make it clear that I’m NOT SAYING these individuals are the ones who thought up the offensive tweet, and that’s why I’ve concealed their faces. I doubt if we’ll ever know who the culprit was, or if there was more than one person involved. But on first glance, I couldn’t help but wonder where the diversity is in this “liberal” organization? EPIC FAIL Onion. I spotted two women and the rest are men, who appear to be of the same racial group. Are y’all kidding me?

Quvenzhane Wallis Quvenzhané Wallis Quvenzhane Wallis Quvenzhané Wallis Quvenzhane Wallis Quvenzhané Wallis Quvenzhane Wallis . . .

That’s her name. Now, take a look at what one Hollywood director gave as a reason for not voting for the young starlet:

“I also don’t vote for anyone whose name I can’t pronounce. Quvez—? Quzen—? Quyzenay? Her parents really put her in a hole by giving her that name — Alphabet Wallis. The truth is, it’s a very sweet but immature performance from a 9-year-old. I’ve directed children. They probably did a thousand takes and put the best ones together.”

Link:
http://blogs.indiewire.com/shadowandact/anonymous-academy-awards-voter-gives-ridiculous-reason-for-not-voting-for-quvenzhane-wallis

 

 

 

A bit later on in this director’s “revelations” it becomes clearer that the lights are on, but apparently nobody’s home:

Beasts of the Southern Wild is a movie that I just didn’t understand” – quote from the same unidentified director.

Link of the original interview posted on The Hollywood Reporter:

Link: http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/race/oscar-voters-brutally-honest-ballot-422546

 

 

 

Thankfully, Ang Lee still won a best director Oscar this year for Life of Pi. Guess the other voters didn’t exhibit the same type of bogus intolerance this guy did. It’s rumored (but not confirmed that the director may have one of those pesky truly “American” names like Biff (I’m not printing the name, but you get the point). In other words, one man’s (or woman’s) name may be standard for some, but for others, it still sounds WTF?

Until the director is identified we’ll never know who it is. But the interview answers make this guy sound pretty full of himself.

 

I say THANK GOD for the Denzel’s, Ang’s, Javier’s, Joaquin’s, Quvenzhane’s, and others, because Hollywood is in dire need of more diversity, even if some of the big shots don’t realize the world isn’t made up of just the US.

Oh, and Miss Quvenzhané Wallis has reportedly secured the lead in Overbrook Entertainment’s (Will and Jada Smith’s production company) film of Annie. Yes, that “Annie” the one that was on Broadway and made into a feature film some years ago.  :)

 

 

QUVENZHANÉ WALLIS TO PLAY ANNIE FOR OVERBROOK ENTERTAINMENT, MARCY MEDIA AND SONY PICTURES ENTERTAINMENT

CULVER CITY, Calif., February 24, 2013 – Overbrook Entertainment, Marcy Media, director Will Gluck and Sony Pictures Entertainment have cast Academy Award® nominee Quvenzhané Wallis, the star of Beasts of the Southern Wild, in the title role of Annie, it was announced today by Doug Belgrad, president of Columbia Pictures, and Hannah Minghella, president of Production for the studio.

Commenting on the announcement, Minghella said, “With the recent Academy Award® nomination and critical acclaim, Quvenzhané Wallis is a true star and we believe her portrayal as Annie will make her a true worldwide star.  She is an extraordinary young talent with an amazing range, not only as an actress but as a singer and dancer, and we can’t wait for audiences to further discover her.”

Annie will be released during the winter holiday season in 2014. The film is being directed by Gluck and produced by James Lassiter, Jada Pinkett Smith, and Will Smith through Overbrook Entertainment, and by Shawn “JAY Z” Carter, Jay Brown, and Tyran “Ty Ty” Smith through Marcy Media.  Gluck is currently revising the film’s screenplay, which was written by Emma Thompson and rewritten by Aline Brosh McKenna based on the musical stage play “Annie,” book by Thomas Meehan, music by Charles Strouse, lyrics by Martin Charnin, and on “Little Orphan Annie,” © and ® Tribune Media Services, Inc. The film is being overseen at the studio by Andrea Giannetti and Devon Franklin.

 

Link: http://www.sonypictures.com/corp/press_releases/2013/02_13/022413_wallis.html

 

 

 

To be continued . . .

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