But what does "lack of diversity" actually mean anyway? I've already poked holes in this silly phrase by highlighting how absolutely any characteristic could be pointed out as an element of diversity. No children won last night, so will there be an outcry of lack of diversity from youths? No little people, nor any extremely tall people, won last night, yet I didn't hear about boycotts from height-diverse actors. No amputees were honored, so are the Oscars "ableist"? If we are going to spend so much time categorizing people by their physical attributes, see how far down the rabbit hole this could go? What is strange to see, however, is last night's very diverse winners not getting credit for their, well, diversity.
Think about it:
Not including the foreign language film category, if my counting is correct, nine English, seven Australian, two Mexican, two Chilean, an Italian, a South African, a Pakistani, a Swedish, and an Irish filmmaker were all honored last night. That doesn't even count the many other nationalities of nominees who didn't win. We also had an openly gay winner, singer Sam Smith, and that doesn't include others who may be gay but aren't public about it. We also had, in the 20 categories which were gender-neutral, eight categories in which women either won outright or shared Oscars with male colleagues. Not bad, I say.
But in the minds of Chris Rock and others upset about the ceremony, "diversity" only means skin color, and for some reason, black skin color. Why not the other skin colors that were on that stage, Chris? Don't they count? Does there skin not "matter" enough? Someone needs to check his diversity privilege.
The point is this: when we reduce each other to the most superficial quality we each possess--our outer appearance--we ignore the countless other interesting things about each of us. And when we look at creative geniuses like Emmanuel Lubeski and Alejandro Inarritu, who happen to be Latino and have combined to take home an astounding five consecutive awards for their groundbreaking work in their respective categories, and not consider them as an acknowledgement of diversity, that is a slap in their face and a slap in the face of all fans of film. Let us celebrate amazing talent. Keeping track of color quotas is the epitome of boring and the antithesis of art. Diversity is out there if only you are willing to look at the people and their work, not just their skin tone.
I'm glad to have a variety of people recognized for their production, and I think last night proved to be a success for the film industry.
I am still mad about one thing, though. Still no lefties in the main categories. Sigh...Keep fighting the good fight, fellow southpaws. And thank goodness this silly awards season is finally over.