Movies impact the human thought processes. The American media continued to portray human beings of color as non-American and inferior physically and intellectually even after the abolition of slavery. One of the most significant film production companies is Walt Disney which has existed since the post-colonial era. The organization began after the abolition of slavery. However, the production house nonetheless produced movies that reinforced racial stereotypes and promoted racial discrimination. The media could have acted in another way to avert the racial bias that was eminent during the period. In current years, racism has continued to be problematic, and the media has had a hand to play in the promotion of racial disunity.
Studies show that after gazing a film, the audience tends to adopt the beliefs and ideals orchestrated by the movie. Movies like Dumbo and The Jungle book are examples of films produced by Walt Disney that instigate racial bias (Badger, 2016). Over the years, the company has become one of the most iconic despite the fact that its rise can be attributed to the success of some of the most racist films ever made in history. During the television era, discrimination became prevalent because of the effect of the media to sway people’s thinking. The media did not rectify their mistake and instead continued to portray stereotypes instead of positive attributes of different races. They continued to deny African Americans and other minority groups important roles and instead referred white actors.
If the media had been more racially sensitive from the beginning America would not be struggling with racial disunity in the present day. Nonetheless, the American film industry continues to be laced with racial bias. It is necessary to conduct a complete overhaul of the practices in the industry. Meritocracy would be the best solution to solve the racial problems in the film industry. In such a scenario, actors are given roles based on their merit and race, gender, sexuality and social class have no part to play in the choice of a character (Baker pg.20-21). Movies such as Ip man (2008), Kung Pow: Enter the Fist (2002) and In time (2011) are some of the movies that display meritocracy. Ip man presents meritocracy in the act of the Japanese government showing off its martial arts. The Japanese government is believed to be superior more than any other person or organization and is seen boasting of its strength in fighting. Kung Pow: Enter the Fist is also similar to Ip man whereby a group of fighters fought in ruling the kingdom. They succeed and are seen possessing powerful martial arts than any other person. Lastly, In time movie displays meritocracy where antagonists were well known in winning gambling. They seemed superior more than the lower civilians.
Meritocracy is where an individual can be successful through persistence, hardworking and selection of good decisions. Black positioned comedies displays meritocracy such as in The Jeffersons (1975- 1985). In this movie, a character named George is hardworking in a dry cleaning business. He is determined that the dry cleaner business will make him fruitful one day. Finally, through his determination and hard work, George is successful and allocates his family to the better part of town. Meritocracy is also seen in the teachers of white savior school films such as Freedom writers where they encourage their students to work hard to be successful in their lives (Baker pg.20-21).
I believe that meritocracy would be the best solution to solve racial problems in the film Industry. For example in the movie, Fresh Prince of Bel Air (1990-1996) shows an American- African teenager boy named Wil. The teenager boy seemed to get trouble in the streets of Philadelphia where he was staying with his single mother. Wil decided to allocate to his wealthier relatives to get away from the stress caused in the streets. Uncle Phil and Aunt Vivian absorbed Phil, and he was taught right behaviors and values to sustain him in the Los Angeles neighborhood (Baker pg.20-21). These attributes were to prepare him a path to success. Regardless of Wil’s race and that of his relatives in Los Angeles, they are believed to be successful in an area where the Whites dominate. I believe when the media advocates for meritocracy in films, issues of racism would lower.
Both blacks and whites film directors should appear on the USPS stamp to disregard racialism. I believe when the two communities are represented on the postage stamp, there will be a decline in condemnation of race. This would promote nationalism, bringing all communities together thus promoting a good relationship between the two communities. There will be a lot of achievement when the two communities are seen on the United States postage stamp. This would eliminate racialism in movies (“Tibaldo: Let’s Collect Postcards Of Our National Heroes”).
In summary, racialism in films has caused negativity between the blacks and the whites. This is because many people are influenced by the scenes they view in movies. Movie companies such as Walt Disney are best known for producing racist movies. They should, therefore, practice releasing films which do not feature race moments. In doing so, both black and white communities will develop a positive way of living with each other.
Badger, William. ““Yeah, but look how far we’ve come”: Disney and the Depiction of Blackness in The Princess and the Frog.” (2016).
Baker, Sherry. “What We Glean from the Silver Screen: Inaccurate Messages About Educational Leaders as Perpetuated by School Movies.” BU Journal of Graduate Studies in Education (2016):16.
“Tibaldo: Let’s Collect Postcards Of Our National Heroes.” SunStar. N.p., 2017. Web. 13 Nov. 2017.