Hate leads to the Dark Side: racism in a galaxy far, far away?

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I just heard the craziest thing that one might ever hear in connection to the seventh installment of the Star Wars franchise, The Force Awakens. It’s not a spoiler … it’s not a suspected plot twist that would more than likely turn out to be false. Either would be more welcome and understandable than what it actually is.

Some are claiming that the new Star Wars movie is, wait for it …… racist. Give yourself a moment to chuckle, because this couldn’t be further from a joke, no matter how funny it may seem.

The racism in this movie isn’t the typical form of racism that we may all be used to, but a new and completely unjustified form. The claim is that it’s “racist” to white males … go ahead and laugh a bit more, I’ll wait.

The newest trailer was aired just last night during halftime of Monday Night Football, leading a lot of Star Wars fanatics to watch–some, perhaps, for the very first time. I myself watched the trailer repeatedly, the excitement growing with each time I pressed play. I’m not going to lie … it’s definitely on the top five list of moments in my life for this past year.

But it wasn’t long before the trolls were loose on Twitter, spreading hate and conspiracy theories in the most nonsensical way imaginable, with a hashtag. #BoycottStarWarsVII. What’s the reason? Why all the hostility? Well, I’m glad you asked. The complaint is all due to the fact that the hero on display in the newest trailer is not a white man.

Yep.

The supposed protagonist of this new movie is a character called Finn, a former stormtrooper that defects to the “good guys”. Finn is a black character portrayed by 23 year old John Boyega(also black) from Perkham, London, England.

Some think the movie is “anti-white”, even going as far to claim that it promotes “white genocide”, calling director J.J. Abrams a “Jewish activist nut”. I read of one tweet that accused the whole movie of pushing the agenda of “social justice warriors”, evidence of blacks “misappropriating” white culture. But this isn’t the first time a movie has received some heat(however minimal it may actually be) for casting a black actor in a major role, just ask Michael B. Jordan.

you’d think we would see someone point out that the Finn
first stormtrooper
we see sans helmet is black, wouldn’t we?

In a recent article for V Magazine, John Boyega spoke out against the backlash, saying “I’m in the movie, what are you going to do about it? You either enjoy it or you don’t. I’m not saying get used to the future, but what is already happening. People of color and women are increasingly being shown on-screen. For things to be whitewashed just doesn’t make sense.” Well said, John Boyega.

But truthfully, for every negative tweet with that ridiculous hashtag, there are literally hundreds mocking them, proving that racism has no place in the Star Wars mythos. If so, you’d think we would see someone point out that the first stormtrooper we see sans helmet is black, wouldn’t we?

One tweet even read, “If white people aren’t wanted in Star Wars, then our money must not be either”. I’m pretty sure Star Wars fans would appreciate you staying home, then … it won’t hurt the box office at all, though. At the moment, the newest trailer has been  viewed over 18 million times, and ticket pre-sales for opening night caused the crash of major online ticketing sites … and it’s two months away.

Watch the trailer again … you know I will.

 

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