So you’ve got a movie coming out. Time to pick out an outfit for the premiere, get a pedicure, and ruffle the feathers of a marginalized community. Now, I hear you, “but I AM part of a marginalized community”. Well boo fucking hoo, it doesn’t matter! Now go get yourself dragged up and down Twitter! Gina Rodriguez is the latest celebrity to find herself on the back foot after being accused of having a history of espousing anti-black sentiment. And when she finally took steps to address the backlash head-on, many people felt she gave a masterclass on Performative Tears For The Stage And Screen.
Much like Kevin Hart and Taraji P. Henson before her, both of whom had movies about to come out right before they stepped in the shit, Gina’s been promoting Miss Bala (a starring vehicle whose cast and crew is made up of 95% Latinas and Latinos). People have been keeping an eye on her since her first foray into Twitter activism, which didn’t go over so well. Back in 2017, she tweeted about the lack of Latino actors in the Marvel franchise and was accused of Afro-Latino erasure.
Marvel announces Black Panther.
Gina Rodriguez: pic.twitter.com/76pmKaSS9o
— J. Holiday’s Gucci Jacket (@eleven8) January 23, 2019
I guess people thought her friend should have known that Tessa Thompson, Rosario Dawson, and Zoe Saldana, all members of the Latina community, each had prominent roles in various Marvel projects. Probably an innocent oversight on Gina’s part, but people started paying attention and handed her one demerit.
Later, when she was in a press junket with her Smallfoot co-star Yara Shahidi and the interviewer said, looking Yara directly in the eye, “you are just goals for so many young black women” (I think he’s in love), Gina practically elbowed Yara out of the way before she could answer and corrected him saying, “so many WOMEN”. Maybe she thought he was addressing both of them. And maybe he should have. But it’s pretty clear he was not. Gina’s reaction was noted and added to her permanent record. That’s 2 demerits for those keeping track.
The exchange starts at 2:00. Gina’s face when Yara is answering is uncomfortable and makes me feel like I have to pee.
Then there was that Porter round table discussion where Ellen Pompeo went off and Julia Roberts’ Niece tried to disappear. When the subject of pay disparity came up, Gina was quick to come in hot with some statistics and said that Latinas get paid the least. According to Gina, it goes whites, blacks, Asians, Latinas. Which, according to The Root, may be true in the real world but is not the case in Hollywood, which was the context in which they were speaking. As everybody knows, in Hollywood it goes whites, dark whites, Sofia Vergara, Italian-Americans, blacks, and Asians (citation needed). The interview earned Gina yet another demerit and detention for a week.
That brings us to the waterworks. Gina appeared on Sirius XM’s Sway’s Universe, and for the first time, addressed how she’s been accused of being anti-black. Here’s why you don’t wait until you’re about to be suspended before asking your teachers if there is any extra credit. You can watch the entire interview here).
Here's Gina Rodriguez crying because she's been rightfully called anti-black pic.twitter.com/6YcX4AO7jT
— fiona apple bottom jeans (@danielleisback_) January 23, 2019
Hand-wringing aside, it was perhaps not wise for her to bring her “dark-skinned” daddy into it.
In case y’all were curious, this is what Gina Rodriguez’s dad looks like… pic.twitter.com/eOvpw1ScxJ
— gιggℓєѕ♌️♌️♌️ (@ms20smthn) January 23, 2019
In honor of Gina Rodriguez's dad let's start a thread of dark skin kings. I'll start pic.twitter.com/lCA3iHVgdx
— You shoulda just sat there and ate your arroz (@afromisandry) January 23, 2019
Damn, Gina! What did you do? You’re a whole ass meme now. Please report to the publicist’s office immediately!