So not even Science Fiction and Speculative fiction can escape the stigma of racism.
So Disney decided to drop the official trailer for the new Star Wars movie during Monday Night Football, assuring that everyone will be glued to the TV watching the game for when the trailer drops. Now that the dust has settled, it has come to light that there are accusations of White genocide going around the interwebs because two P.O.C. (one Black and one Latin) and a woman are figured prominently among all the promo material. Here is what I mean when I say prominently: When the first trailer appeared for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, many people were upset that the first face we see is that of actor John Boyega dressed as a Stormtrooper. The next person we see is Daisy Ridley on a speeder bike. The third person we see is Oscar Isaac, piloting an X-Wing fighter. In the 1:30 teaser trailer, not one White person was given face time.
The mere sight of Boyega in a Stormtrooper outfit gave rise to #BlackStormtrooper. I looked it up and the comments surrounding this hashtag were not nice at all…the fact that people are offended at someone of color becoming a Stormtrooper is ludicrous. Then the poster showed up…
Boyega’s character is holding a lightsaber! Blasphemy! How dare a P.O.C. Hold a lightsaber! Oh wait! Samuel Jackson held one for three of the six movies…now the ones behind the stormtooper tag have created the #BoycottStarWarsVII because as I found out, Han and Leia are not figured prominently on the poster and Luke is not shown at all.
Being a fan of Science Fiction and Speculative Fiction, this is the only poster that I have seen for a major movie that have a woman and a P.O.C. as the main protagonists. I am tickled pink at that prospect!
Now back to the term “White Genocide”…I would this that fans of Science Fiction would embrace diversity as you deal with alien races and faster than light travel, but I guess not…the Ebony article suggested I google diversity in science fiction. I did and was shocked at the amount of hate that White America has for P.O.C and women in science fiction. The fact that people cannot grasp that a lot of the science fiction and speculative fiction that is read was produced by P.O.C. Names like the late Octavia E. Butler, Samuel R. Delaney, Tananarive Due, George Schuyler, Nalo Hopkinson, N.K. Jemisin, Nnedi Okorafor, and Steven Barnes just to name a few. This genre is well suited to P.O.C. as we have been creating alternate worlds and realities since our ancestor’s very first beginnings. So as Shawn Taylor said in his article on Ebony…“So if these folks want to interpret a film that reflects the racial reality of the world as some kind of genocidal plot to eradicate the White race, Tripping, they are. Meds, and hugs, they need.”