links for 2011-05-01

  • "His work as a regional booster behind the scenes and in front of the camera has garnered him many accolades, including a Spirit of Detroit award at his 40th birthday bash in January. So recognition from the local branch of the NAACP should come as no surprise — except that Kid Rock, a longtime aficionado of Southern rock, also is known for using the Confederate flag in his on-stage act."
  • "All the racial mixing isn’t idealized, and isn’t untouched by the reality of race in America today. Brian’s ability to move from one side of the law to the other seems as much the result of white privilege as it does bad screenwriting. And it’s useful to remember that most of the nonwhite characters aren’t upstanding businessmen or girls-next-door—they’re robbers and car thieves. But the weird excitement of these movies, if you take them together, is how they distort reality to create the illusion of revolution. The movies give us felons who seem, even unwittingly, like they’re fighting for something—say, for the normalization of racial integration at the movies. Some of us grimaced when John Singleton, the director of 'Boyz n the Hood,' signed on to direct the first sequel. It seemed desperate. He should be out doing something important, we thought—but, as it turns out, that’s exactly what he was doing."