How can we determine if something is racist?
One easy way to answer this question is by using Netflix’s title release for their new upcoming series, “Dear White People.” If you were to change the name to Dear Black People, Dear Hispanics or Dear Asians, would you get the feeling that the title is racist? Most people would. These alternative titles would also cause more visceral outrage from the public then Netflix is experiencing from their current title. This public discontent has caused calls for a boycott and membership cancellation.
On February 8th, Netflix released the controversial teaser trailer for their new series and it has already racked up over 3.5 million views. The public response has been poor, to say the least. On Youtube, the trailer has received almost ten times more dislikes than likes. The story would likely be different if the trailer had appeared to be showing an attempt to mend race relations. Unfortunately, this is not the case.
The teaser depicts the show taking place on a University campus, with a radio host speaking about what is an okay Halloween costume that will not offend anyone. The trailer provided some insight as to what the show appears to be about, telling white people to continue to watch their microaggressions. This media and entertainment obsession with political correctness has made race relations worse, not better.
Some of the responses from those who are angry about the title and trailer is excessive. Reports of people criticizing the trailer because it is calling for “white genocide” is overblown. The trailer does not in any way call for white genocide. However, it does look to continue dividing people.
If the goal of the show was to better race relations it appears to be doing nothing of the sort. The public outrage provides that fact. This show instead appears to be a marketing ploy If they truly thought this show title would help mend and better race relations it only shows pure ignorance on their part.
The show releases on April 28th.