Oh man, am I going to hate admitting this, but February 22, 2015 was the first time I have actually sat down and watched The Oscar’s all the way through. I have seen bits and pieces but never the entire show. The reason I watched the show was to see who the Best Actor/Actress of the Year was, Director of the Year and Picture of the Year. My interest this year was fueled by the media’s reaction to “American Sniper” being nominated for six awards. The act of being nominated alone started a flood of positive and negatives reaction from all sides of the political entertainment system. My expectation of “American Sniper” receiving any major awards wasn’t disappointed. The only award the movie won was Achievement in Sound Editing.
The movie “American Sniper” has accomplished records set by only a hand full of movies. It has toped 300 Million Dollars in box office sales, started conversation about PTSD, raised awareness of what our soldiers endure and brought a level of patriotism toward our military and America. While this next tidbit of info might not be something that makes the producers and director happy this movie in just 4 weeks has set a record number of illegal downloads with 1,389,819, Gone Girl had 1,252,074, Grand Budapest Hotel has 636,292 and Selma had 144,075.
There were a few highlights during the Oscar’s and the most enjoyed by me was Lady Gaga singing her rendition of Julie Andrews “Sound of Music.” Wow, I always knew she could sing but I had no idea of the range she was capable of carrying. Her dress and appearance and performance were really at a level no others reached during this year’s show. And yes, there were several low moments with the most noticed being John Legend and Common receiving their award for Best Original Song “Glory.” Common first spoke giving thanks to God (the only recipient to acknowledge God during the night) then a few political statements and then John Legend spoke first giving usual thanks then saying; “Selma’ is now because the struggle for justice is right now, We know that the Voting Rights Act that they fought for 50 years ago is being compromised right now in this country today. We know that right now, the struggle for freedom and justice is real. We live in the most incarcerated country in the world. There are more black men under correctional control today then were under slavery in 1850. We are with you, we see you, we love you and march on,” Why can’t the winners of the awards just receive them give their thanks to the movie goers, cast, crew, directors, producers etc. and walk off. When did the Oscars become a political platform to force a captive audience to listen to their selected topic of the year?
The one question I would have liked to ask John Legend would have been how many blacks in America in 1850 were held in slavery and what is the number of blacks in America now. The total American population in 1850 was 23,191,876 I am not able to identify where blacks were counted or even recognized. Given that America only consisted of 30 states and the rest-untamed western states I can’t imagine the black population percentage would have been very large. The 2010 Census record shows America’s total population at 308,775,538. They break it down to 266,724,795 white or 86.4% and 42,020,743 or 13.6% black. By shear number increases it isn’t hard to establish that more of any population would be incarcerated today than in any years in the 1800’s.
Now lets revisit the little speech John Legend gave. It wasn’t original and it wasn’t his. On 10/12/2011 Michelle Alexander wrote an article for the Huffington Post titled “More Black Men Are In Prison Today Than Were Enslaved in 1850.” If a conservative gave that speech he would be charged with plagiarism.
What did all of this prove? America’s entertainment business has a political dominance that we can’t over look. There was a Facebook post today concerning the NBC network for their lack of respect for the Pledge of Allegiance. This is with all major networks. My response to this post was; I agree. There are lots of problems with our big three television networks. The bigger problem is there aren’t enough people willing to shut them off, cable companies know when a network is being watched, or are not willing to write/email the advertisers to let them know of their disapproval of the show/network they are advertising on. Until that happens reposting a post does nothing more than reposting but if it makes you feel good then go ahead. Why don’t we instead try emailing the networks and advertisers and tell them. Just a thought.
America is in trouble on many levels, most of the problems can be handled if we as individuals took the responsibility to stand up and say something. The opposing side doesn’t seem to have a problem in doing that and they are gaining ground and followers daily. In the end we will only have ourselves to blame. Don’t dare look at anyone else to blame until you have had a come to Jesus meeting with the person in the mirror.
For Liberty and Freedom.