by Carmen Van Kerckhove
By now I’m sure you’ve heard about the controversy surrounding the actor Isaiah Washington, who plays Dr. Preston Burke on the hit show Grey’s Anatomy. If you’re not familiar with the story, you can read a pretty detailed account of the events so far in this New York Times story.
So what do you think? Should Washington be fired for his homophobic slur? If Washington wasn’t black, would ABC have moved more quickly? If the situation had involved a white actor calling his castmate the n-word, would things be any different? I don’t mean to play oppression olympics here, of course, I just think there are some very interesting race implications in this story worth exploring.
I also can’t believe that Washington had the balls to tell an outright lie in front of all his coworkers and the international press corps. People who are so comfortable lying, even when they know that everyone knows they’re lying, have always amazed me. I used to work for a woman like that, and she’d always put me in these incredibly awkward positions where I had to choose between revealing her lie or having everyone think that I wasn’t doing my job.