Update: Racist Hunger Games Fans Are Still Racist

Courtesy Los Angeles Times

By Arturo R. García

As you’ll recall, Nerdgasm Noire’s Roxie Moxie shared this column about the problematic reactions to the casting of Lenny Kravitz and Amandla Stenberg in the film adaptation of The Hunger Games, the opening chapter of which has gone on to post an opening weekend take of more than $155 million at the box office.

Here’s a sample of how some fans took the news that Kravitz would be playing Cinna:

That was five months ago. In the wake of the film’s strong opening, the disappointment–and sometimes outright anger–of more fans has been pushed further into the spotlight.

Not long after the film opened, there were enough of these kinds of reactions floating around online to populate a Tumblr (which should be read with a Trigger Warning for slurs):

After visiting the page, The American Prospect’s Jamelle Bouie told Racialicious Monday he was inspired to seek out more of those kinds of tweets and repost them on his own account:

Via Jamelle Bouie

As Hunger Games Tumblr’s author observed, these types of entitled outlooks didn’t just come out of nowhere:

Here’s what scares me…

All these… people… read the Hunger Games. Clearly, they all fell in love with and cared about Rue. Though what they really fell in love with was an image of Rue that they’d created in their minds. A girl that they knew they could love and adore and mourn at the thought of knowing that she’s been brutally killed.

And then the casting is revealed (or they go see the movie) and they’re shocked to see that Rue is black. Now… this is so much more than, “Oh, she’s bigger than I thought”. The reactions are all based on feelings of disgust.

These people are MAD that the girl that they cried over while reading the book was “some black girl” all along. So now they’re angry. Wasted tears, wasted emotions. It’s sad to think that had they known that she was black all along, there would have been so sorrow or sadness over her death.

There are MAJOR TIE-INS to these reactions and the injustices that we see around the world today. I don’t even need to spell it out because I know that you’re all a smart bunch.

The question now is, how will this “smart bunch” address this issue, if at all?

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  • Rebecca B2010

    idiots. they should know better. and didn’t it say specifically in the book that Rue had dark brown skin. Have a heart people. This kid is just a 13 yr old playing a part in the movie. She must have shed tears over what u said. And some of you call yourself christians. Such mean cruel idiots. And in the hunger games they don’t really consider race to be a huge part of the book. Evverything is ruled by the capitol. RRRight. What if they cast a latino girl, or arabian. They change movies from the books so many times. Why do people care so much this time?

    All I can think right now is : I diots. Idiots, Idiots.

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  • http://twitter.com/Ellington3 Rhonda Yearwood

    On the Blog/website Hello Giggles , they are even addressing this subject issue.
    The author of the article admits that when she read the book(s) she too glossed over that fact that Rue is black but she tries to explain why she did but not really excusing herself for this. 
    I read the article that she wrote.
    What do any of the readers here think of what she( the article’s author) has said?
    Here is the link.

    http://hellogiggles.com/rue-is-black-and-racism-is-still-an-issue

  • http://twitter.com/Ellington3 Rhonda Yearwood

    On the Blog/website Hello Giggles , they are even addressing this subject issue.
    The author of the article admits that when she read the book(s) she too glossed over that fact that Rue is black but she tries to explain why she did but not really excusing herself for this. 
    I read the article that she wrote.
    What do any of the readers here think of what she( the article’s author) has said?
    Here is the link.

    http://hellogiggles.com/rue-is-black-and-racism-is-still-an-issue

  • http://twitter.com/wallfairy Lucy Sammel

    So, I must confess that I haven’t read the books (this is quite unusual for me), but based on what I saw in the movie alone this whole thing seems extremely hypocritical.

    The reason that the hunger games are so easily accepted by the citizens of the disgustingly opulent Capitol  is that they don’t consider the residents of the districts human. The districts are just places to extract their goods from- be it power, food, or entertainment. At least, that’s what I got from just watching the movie.

    So it seems really ironic to me that, in these people who have experienced the same story as I did (this is assuming that the movie was similar to the book, I guess), prejudices such as these could remain. I mean, the horror of it all, which was everywhere in the movie, just comes from that intense classism. I just can’t figure how you can get through something like Hunger Games and not be affected by its horror, and, affected by its horror, how you cannot ponder its roots….

  • http://twitter.com/wallfairy Lucy Sammel

    So, I must confess that I haven’t read the books (this is quite unusual for me), but based on what I saw in the movie alone this whole thing seems extremely hypocritical.

    The reason that the hunger games are so easily accepted by the citizens of the disgustingly opulent Capitol  is that they don’t consider the residents of the districts human. The districts are just places to extract their goods from- be it power, food, or entertainment. At least, that’s what I got from just watching the movie.

    So it seems really ironic to me that, in these people who have experienced the same story as I did (this is assuming that the movie was similar to the book, I guess), prejudices such as these could remain. I mean, the horror of it all, which was everywhere in the movie, just comes from that intense classism. I just can’t figure how you can get through something like Hunger Games and not be affected by its horror, and, affected by its horror, how you cannot ponder its roots….

  • Roundelay78

     Actually, I’ve seen folks of Middle Eastern descent with olive skin, so
    that description could equally apply to Arabs and Arabs-Americans as
    well. I just attended a legal forum at a college in which the main topic
    was racial profiling, particularly in light of the Trayvon Martin
    case.  One of the panalists, an African-American law professor mentioned
    that he actually liked both the

    bchjbooks and the movie (when he asked how many fans of the books were inteh room, a couple of excited hands shot up

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  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_6PBXRDV26MRB4O545HRLYJPKV4 GuruofPhilosophy

     And they wonder why black people complain about racism. This is why people. Even though rue and cinna are played by mixed people…

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_6PBXRDV26MRB4O545HRLYJPKV4 GuruofPhilosophy

     And they wonder why black people complain about racism. This is why people. Even though rue and cinna are played by mixed people…

  • Sophie

    In the books it said she had dark skin. I don’t understand why everyone was so surprised. 

    • Mickey

      They probably thought tan skin. Tan is dark for white people, but very light for POC.

  • Sophie

    In the books it said she had dark skin. I don’t understand why everyone was so surprised. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001891870322 Adeen Danica Mckenzie

    Lol, someone read my mind on this! Amandla Stenberg is a light brown complexion and when Ithink of dark brown skin, I think of Michelle Obama. Malia Obama is actually a medium brown skin complexion. Sasha does have dark brown skin, you are right on that one though. But Amandla Stenberg is a cute little thing and it was so sad reading the comments about her casting of Rue. When will people ever learn to not judge others by the color of their skin?

    • http://twitter.com/Ellington3 Rhonda Yearwood

      I had to explain to a white person that black people come in many shades. It seems it is something that she could not seem to wrap her head around.
      In my own family if I went by her “idea” that black people are only a certain shade, she would neever believe that my parents are my parents and that my brothers are my brothers.
      I have to say this though, I am getting tired of trying to explain things.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001891870322 Adeen Danica Mckenzie

    I am not a fan of the Hunger Games series but is so sad that they would tweet such racial crap like that. I am a Black teenager who feels strongly about racism and racist people in all races in general. And to see these people, young people like me, write such racist thing deeply upset me. They are probably my age and in their twenties. Reading their tweets, I thought I was reading opinions of people from the 1950s and 1960s. Not now. I thought my generation was more tolerant but I guess I am wrong. My generation is just as racist as the past generations because people from the past generations teach them and feed them racial crap about POC like me and other races teach their children crap about other races as well. This has to stop. I partially blame the media for this because they bring out subtle racial messages. And education etc. As well as the parents. This situation is upsetting!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001891870322 Adeen Danica Mckenzie

    I am not a fan of the Hunger Games series but is so sad that they would tweet such racial crap like that. I am a Black teenager who feels strongly about racism and racist people in all races in general. And to see these people, young people like me, write such racist thing deeply upset me. They are probably my age and in their twenties. Reading their tweets, I thought I was reading opinions of people from the 1950s and 1960s. Not now. I thought my generation was more tolerant but I guess I am wrong. My generation is just as racist as the past generations because people from the past generations teach them and feed them racial crap about POC like me and other races teach their children crap about other races as well. This has to stop. I partially blame the media for this because they bring out subtle racial messages. And education etc. As well as the parents. This situation is upsetting!

  • limelivi

    Even in the book, Katniss described Rue’s skin as being of a “milk chocolate” color. She was black the whole time!!!

  • OliveGinger

    I am  aghast and disgusted at the ignorance and outright racism of THG fans for protesting Rue and Cinna’s casting.  Very distressing. As a WOC, I have been struggling with the portrayal of Katniss as a white girl for a while now and am very happy I came across this discussion.  I initially read Katniss as mixed race.  Its a future society – it only makes sense that blended race is the norm. Also, its so rare that a heroine in a science fiction book is descrobed as anything close to being of color that I embraced Katniss completely.

    I was extremely upset months ago when casting calls were exclusively for white actresses.  While I can understand that it may turn out that a white actress may best exemplify a character (which is ok with me), its incredibly unfair to the story, to Katniss fans, and to the average consumer of media, to not even give actresses of color a chance.

    I read THG with great identification to the lead character and feel like I was betrayed by the film producers and even the writer for defending the choise to purposefully select a white actress to play Katniss. Not because I’m racist.  Or because I am rigid in my thinking.  Its because there are 100′s of books and movies with white protagonists that I love… but being able to see myself in a minority character that is the heroine of a story is incredibly rare.

    Lastly, even if Katniss was not described as olive-toned and a highly probable POC (yes, olive is not exclusively the domain of color but the vast majority of olive-toned individuals are in fact  minorities), why not conisider some non-traditional casting? Why not let the heroine of a story set centuries in the future be of color?  Or other alternative choices such as why not let Peeta be of Asian descent?  Based on the social media reaction to Rue being African-American (when she was blatantly written as dark skinned), I can’t help but wonder is it because middle America is not so amenable to paying $10 to see a person of color in such a leading role? 

    • Anonymous

      I’m not sure that Katniss is a “highly probable POC.”  Possible, sure, but with a blonde mother and blonde sister, white does seem more likely.  If Katniss were really significantly darker than Prim, then I think there would be a lot more “You’re sisters?  Really?” than there actually is in the book.  (I say this as a dark-haired, dark-eyed, olive-skinned white person with a blondish-haired, green-eyed, pale-skinned sister — we get asked that a LOT.)

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  • kim

    I haven’t read or seen this movie but OMG this is just depressing. What is wrong with these kids and the people that raised them? And it just encourages more of Hollywhite’s BS about how (white) moviegoers won’t support a movie not starring whites.

  • Anonymous

    Really?  I thought that pretty much everyone in the arena was a sympathetic character, except for maybe some of the Careers.

    How does Rue saving Katniss’s life increase the odds of Rue’s death?  The odds of living are, at best, 1 in 24.  Katniss and Rue help each other several times, and thus together increase both their odds of living.

    What magical connection to nature does Rue have?  She knows about the leaves that heal the tracker jacker stings, but that’s presented as a survival thing — everyone in her district knows about the leaves because there are tracker jackers all over the place there.  Most of the other districts only have a few, so the other kids never needed to know a remedy before.  And Katniss’s mother and sister both know about herbal remedies, too.

  • Cgretton

    she is indeed alive and well and an active blogger — check out her latest entry on the “death” of books – 
    http://www.ursulakleguin.com/Blog2012.html#46DeathoftheBook Great stuff!

  • Cgretton

    she is indeed alive and well and an active blogger — check out her latest entry on the “death” of books – 
    http://www.ursulakleguin.com/Blog2012.html#46DeathoftheBook Great stuff!

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  • Anonymous

    There’s a good article on Hyphen about that:

    http://www.hyphenmagazine.com/blog/archive/2012/03/why-hunger-gamess-snub-battle-royale-matters

    However, I am inclined to believe Collins when she said she had no concept of BR – Western media always devalues what comes from other parts of the world, and it wasn’t easy to find for a good while.

  • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

    Everyone knows where Katniss’ father is and what he looked like. They are full sisters.

  • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

    Everyone knows where Katniss’ father is and what he looked like. They are full sisters.

  • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

    Everyone knows where Katniss’ father is and what he looked like. They are full sisters.

  • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

    Everyone knows where Katniss’ father is and what he looked like. They are full sisters.

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  • Medusa

     “There’s a chance that having a black lead woman might mean less people felt a connection in the way they currently do…”

    What people? Oh, you mean white people? Oh that’s right, of course, because the rest of us aren’t people, therefore it doesn’t matter whether or not  there are non-white characters for us to relate to!

    • Tomás Garnett

      I second what Medusa is saying…
      Plus Jodie spelt my name wrong (argh!)

  • Anonymous

    That’s not what the above commenter is referring to. LeGuin was very vocal on racebending and whitewashing, particularly in reference to the adaptation of her own series:

    http://www.slate.com/articles/arts/culturebox/2004/12/a_whitewashed_earthsea.html

  • Violetta

    It may be disappointing, but not surprising. 
    As someone who has regularly encountered teens and “tweens” in online gaming and forums, bigotry seems to be a fashion accessory these days.  I’m not saying that all teens are like this -absolutely not – but online it seems that how tough, popular and cool you are is  measured by how racist, misogynistic and generally unpleasant you can be. Perhaps it’s the result of a generation raised on TMZ, reality TV, Xbox live, 4chan, American Dad, Jersey Shore and youtube bullies, because it seems that nastiness is embraced and compassion is a sign of weakness. 
    However, we must remember that there are also wonderfully creative, passionate and responsible young people such as those I teach in my dance classes. Sometimes it’s too easy to let your views of a generation be shaped by the worst people within it. 

  • Chris

    If everyone that read the book actually paid attention, you can plainly see that Rue is described to have dark skin(page 126 of the book). As far as Cinna, the only description of him is having metallic gold eyeliner and being clean-cut. 

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t know about the Hunger Games until the posts on here and on Racebending about the white-washing of the main character. That completely turned me off from seeing this movie and as I don’t read young adult fiction, I highly doubt I will read the books as well. I often hear people say race does not matter for young people but obviously that is not true. POC are okay only if we stay in our place and play tertiary roles and step in line with what the dominant white culture views as appropriate. Otherwise, we are not valued.

  • http://www.facebook.com/galiotica Nejasna ちゃん

    A woman of colour? They won’t even admit dark whites exist (god forbid Katniss  looked like *gasp! an immigrant or had an “unpronounceable” non-English name!) let alone accept an actress of different race. No matter how close to stereotype white she looked. 

    You know what would happen – the bashing Amandla gets would come nowhere near when compared to it.
    If you are familiar with the Merlin series, Queen Guinevere is played by a black actress, the fandom is like a war zone for years now. 

    • brandi

      Yep and have you seen the fandom hate for Martha Jones as well? Its ridiculous.

    • http://twitter.com/Ellington3 Rhonda Yearwood

      I am sick of that twisted attitude about Queen Guinevere and Martha Jones. I love Arthur and Gwen and Martha was for me the best assistant to the Doctor and the only reason I finally started watching Dr. Who regularly, after Christopher Eccleston and then when finally Freema Agyeman left I stopped watching because I was never big into the Doctor.
      I was also sick about the twisted crap that was spouted about Lt. Uhura and Com. Spock being in love in the latest film!
      I even read some insane comments saying that she forced herself on him and that Zachary Quinto is gay and would never want a woman let a lone a black woman.
      Quinto maybe gay but he is an actor and is playing a  Vulcan character who is in love with a black Earth woman. The hate written about Uhura and Spock made my stomach turn and Star Trek is “suppose” to be about and enlightened future, that pathetic irony of it all is almost laughable. 

  • http://twitter.com/Ellington3 Rhonda Yearwood

    I think they think that they read the book but the obviously did not “read” or comprehend the book.

  • http://twitter.com/Ellington3 Rhonda Yearwood

    I posted a link to the Nerdgasam article on my facebook page. I said that  was sick and tired of this crap happening all the time. 
    For voicing my anger and disgust with this situation I called a racist by a white woman on facebook who has since defriended me. 
    Sometimes I just cannot believe that amount of incredibly ignorant there is out there.

    • Violetta

      Ignorance is the best friend of the privileged person. I think it must take a lot of self-delusion, because they always seem to think they are the most oppressed group in society – whether it’s white privilege, male privilege, etc. 

      • http://twitter.com/wallfairy Lucy Sammel

        Or, to keep it in the Hunger Games, the Capitol privilege.

      • http://twitter.com/wallfairy Lucy Sammel

        Or, to keep it in the Hunger Games, the Capitol privilege.

  • Anonymous

    I’m guessing that, given what was said in the books about the water rising and the coasts moving in, we can assume that most islands are mostly underwater.

  • Anonymous

    Honestly, she WAS described as black but some readers just totally overlooked that. Her region is basically a plantation with kids and adults picking fruit and whatever. Some readers seem to have gotten confused by Katniss saying Rue reminded her of her little blue-eyed, blonde-haired sister, Prim. I read someone else say they thought she was a red-haired freckled little girl! I just have to say what were you reading?  I don’t know how anyone could look at 
    Amandla Stenberg’s angelic face and call her these nasty racist names.

  • Anonymous

    Honestly, she WAS described as black but some readers just totally overlooked that. Her region is basically a plantation with kids and adults picking fruit and whatever. Some readers seem to have gotten confused by Katniss saying Rue reminded her of her little blue-eyed, blonde-haired sister, Prim. I read someone else say they thought she was a red-haired freckled little girl! I just have to say what were you reading?  I don’t know how anyone could look at 
    Amandla Stenberg’s angelic face and call her these nasty racist names.

  • http://twitter.com/RafaelSolece Rafael Solece

    Racism is a lot like Cancer, you can cut it out, but some still lengers in the body. Its funny how in our minds we assume that Race is now an issue and that the younger generation especially are above such hatred, when the truth is hatred is still an underling factor across the world and within our country.

  • Anonymous

    How many of those tweets were made by “tweens”? If most of the tweets were made by kids then there is a big problem with their reading comprehension as well as relegating the black/ brown characters to the book,  yet not the film. 

  • http://vita-ganieda.livejournal.com/ Ganieda

    Breaking news: Racist tweens take to Twitter, expose lack of reading comprehension, souls. 

    • ch555x

       co-signed!

    • ch555x

       co-signed!

  • April Yee

    This is extremely unnerving to me given the fact that in the book Rue is explicitly described as having OLIVE SKIN. In fact, the protagonist Katniss is, from the very beginning, also described as having OLIVE SKIN. Obviously these “disappointed” people are not only ignorant and obnoxious; they cannot read either!

    • Anonymous

      Katniss is described as having olive skin, but Rue isn’t — her skin is described as brown.

  • Anonymous

    I find the racist reaction ironic for two reasons. First, as others have noted, Katniss in the book is described as “olive skinned” and there are indications that she may be biracial. What if the filmmakers had opened the casting call to POC and cast a non-white actress as Katniss?

    Also, the character of Rue (and to a lesser extent Thresh and Cinna) struck me as stereotypical “Magical Negroes.” These three characters literally give their lives to save the white protagonist. In the case of Rue, the stereotype is particularly apt, as she’s close to nature and her death is given an otherworldly, almost beatific dimension. 

  • Lyonside

    Don’t give up on them. I work in an alternative-ed school in the burbs of Philadelphia (the not-so-pretty burbs, mind you), and the school is mixed (about 30-40% minority). Not only have a lot of the students (middle and high school age) read The Hunger Games, but they have no problem with the casting, but today the 8th grade had a period-long discussion about the Trayvon Martin murder, and the white students were just as upset as the black and brown students, and voiced a lot of the same issues. When guided in the right way, many of them GET IT, in a fundamental way that I pray does not get beaten out of them in a pitch to fit in with the mainstream. Maybe because so many of these kids do not HAVE as much privilege (socioeconomic, lack of internet access, very turbulent home lives, lack of parental support, etc.), they’re not as blinded by it.

    • Bluemorpho

      I never fail to be inspired by high school students’ willingness to move past a blind spot of unexamined privilege or a difficult and demanding concept related to justice.  Kids know and care about “fair.”  But if the adults in their lives lack the language, frameworks, and willingness to guide those conversations, then it’s no surprise our children imitate what they absorb in the world around them: the lives of people of color are less valuable than white lives, white is normative and “human”, all characters in fictional media are white unless expressly described otherwise, and that diverse representations of people of color–especially as heroes and victors–is a frightening encroachment on white privilege.

      It’s our job to Talk About Race.  Our children mirror the attitudes inherent in our silence.

    • Bluemorpho

      I never fail to be inspired by high school students’ willingness to move past a blind spot of unexamined privilege or a difficult and demanding concept related to justice.  Kids know and care about “fair.”  But if the adults in their lives lack the language, frameworks, and willingness to guide those conversations, then it’s no surprise our children imitate what they absorb in the world around them: the lives of people of color are less valuable than white lives, white is normative and “human”, all characters in fictional media are white unless expressly described otherwise, and that diverse representations of people of color–especially as heroes and victors–is a frightening encroachment on white privilege.

      It’s our job to Talk About Race.  Our children mirror the attitudes inherent in our silence.

  • Tomás Garnett

    Ursula K. LeGuin needs to put Suzanne Collins in her place. Suzanne could have done something amazing for mix-race/actors of color. Instead she chose to pander to the Whitewashing of Hollywood and APPROVED of the casting for characters such as Katniss, Gale and other Seam residents who were explicitly NOT blonde and pale. Why did she make an exception for the casting of Rue and Thresh? That’s what I want to know. Because…apparently we can’t have brown heros, but we can have brown expendable characters. 

    • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

      Rue and Thresh are not an “exception”. They’re described as being black in the books. 
      It could be argued that Cinna is an exception as he isn’t given much description at all.

    • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

      Rue and Thresh are not an “exception”. They’re described as being black in the books. 
      It could be argued that Cinna is an exception as he isn’t given much description at all.

    • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

      Rue and Thresh are not an “exception”. They’re described as being black in the books. 
      It could be argued that Cinna is an exception as he isn’t given much description at all.

    • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

      Rue and Thresh are not an “exception”. They’re described as being black in the books. 
      It could be argued that Cinna is an exception as he isn’t given much description at all.

    • ChristyA

      To be fair, though, while Ursula LeGuin did have a fantasy series with a person of colour as a protagonist, she took so long to describe Ged in the books that some people missed it entirely , some people (including myself, if I’m honest) didn’t miss it when it came, but had already formed an image of Ged.  When the godawful miniseries came out, quite a lot of people who had read the books were saying ‘What? Why are you complaining?  He was white, wasn’t he?’, without any malice intended in it.  Suzanne Collins described both Rue and Thresh in their first appearances – no time to form another image, nothing like that.  

    • ChristyA

      To be fair, though, while Ursula LeGuin did have a fantasy series with a person of colour as a protagonist, she took so long to describe Ged in the books that some people missed it entirely , some people (including myself, if I’m honest) didn’t miss it when it came, but had already formed an image of Ged.  When the godawful miniseries came out, quite a lot of people who had read the books were saying ‘What? Why are you complaining?  He was white, wasn’t he?’, without any malice intended in it.  Suzanne Collins described both Rue and Thresh in their first appearances – no time to form another image, nothing like that.  

  • Mar

    Seems people confuse “time” (passing) with “progress”.  Laws have changed. Enforcement of laws has improved. Public behaviour has changed. What goes on behind closed doors still seeps out. “Generations” sounds impressive but in reality it is the grandparents and parents of these people commenting on this movie who have bathed their children in these racist ideas that THEIR parents and the times they lived in reinforced.
    They don’t want their children to think clearly on the matter of race because they will lose their sense of entitlement and the goods and services and ease they steal from “others” as a matter of course. They are also fearful they will get what they know they deserve, all the while ignoring the fact that people aren’t interested in revenge, but fairness. Yet, the longer they use their influence to try to degrade the worth of “others” the more twisted and paranoid and sick and less-than-human they become…

  • Clevkenneth5

    Not surprising to me.the fact that Lenny Kravitz is bi-racial is also irrelevant to racists.He has brown skin  and is therefore less than.This type of thinking has real life consequences beyonfd the movies.

  • Ada

    Assholes. Some people don’t deserve cinema. Kravitz is a fantastic choice. 
    I concur with what others have said, dread to think what their reaction would’ve been if Katniss had been cast as a woman of colour (which she was in the book). 

  • Jasel

    Unfortunately those seems to be the type of bigoted mentalities Hollywood caters to more often than not.

  • Eva

    Sadly, this does not surprise me.  These are the kinds of people who think black people and POC in general are not human beings.  But who can really blame them?  When a white woman goes missing it’s BIG NATIONAL NEWS, but when a person of color goes missing, it’s a blurb in the local news, hardly the lead story on the Today show like Nataliee Holloway was for years. 

  • The Buzz
  • Sara

     Evidently these “fans” completely blocked out Katniss’ description of Rue as the 12-year old who looks about 10 with “bright, dark eyes and satiny brown skin”.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=2257840 Christian J

    Number one aren’t olives either black or green? I have yet to see  a person with green skin. So rue should be black, native, latina or someone with dark the same goes for Katniss should could have easily been a latina actresss or mixed or whatever and it is possible to have a sibling with different features, especially in a post apocalyptic America where lot’s of racial mixing has probabbly occured.

    • Anonymous

       Well, according to my hair stylist, one can have “green,” “yellow” and “pink” skin tones. She described my skin tones as “green” and “yellow”, and people would look at me as white.

    • http://www.facebook.com/galiotica Nejasna ちゃん

      Olives come in green, greyish, yellowish, purple, bluish, black and dark brown. 

      Katniss couldn’t have been a non-Caucasian because her sister is 100% Aryan looking. Mixed children can pass as “ethnic white” at best, not like Prim. 

      On the other hand they could have simply made them half sisters/ problem solved.  It would fit in the story too. 

      • Egg

        “her sister is 100% Aryan looking. Mixed children can pass as ‘ethnic white’ at best”

        “100% Aryan looking. Mixed children can pass as ‘ethnic white’ at best”

        “Mixed children can pass as ‘ethnic white’ at best”

        …my god, you’re really hitting it out of the ballpark today, aren’t you?

      • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

        This is simply false.

      • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

        This is simply false.

      • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

        This is simply false.

      • http://twitter.com/_Roxie_ MCJ

        This is simply false.

    • Roundelay78

       What I meant to finish saying about what the professor said about the Hunger Games (there’s this newfangled “Reaction” box thing in my way while typing that wouldn’t let me finish my reply) was that they were his kids’ favorite books, and that he was depressed when he saw the reaction to the casting of these 2 particular characters, whom, he said WERE mentioned in the book as being black to begin with,but seeing the reactions to the racism cheered him up. I’ m not a fan or either the book or the movie, and the hype

  • Anonymous

    I’m not a part of the Hunger Games fandom…haven’t read the books.  I was willing to get lured in by the hype to at least see the movie.  All of this “fan” backlash is not only disgusting, but disheartening.  I thought this post on the Hunger Games Tweets tumblr was fitting:

    “fedinger asked: (cont)
    Also, I think the fact that most of the people tweeting about the race
    of Rue and Thresh are teens says a lot about our public education system
    that is, at least in many areas, unwilling to talk about race. Kids
    need to be taught to close read details and not view white as the
    default, but that is clearly, tragically, not being modeled for them….”

    (http://hungergamestweets.tumblr.com/post/19611945471/cont-also-i-think-the-fact-that-most-of-the-people)
    The fact that so many of these young people are comfortable with this kind of racism is very telling.  Often society, the MSM, etc. likes to throw around the idea that race doesn’t matter to young people or that they’re more accepting of diversity, blah blah blah, but here is an example of where this clearly isn’t  the case.  Many young people may be “accepting” of diversity in a de-facto sense, but really don’t have to tools to deal with the more subtle systemic messages about race that are still being thrown at them. 

  • Crimson

    A bunch of idiots. And to think, this our future. We’re all fucking doomed for sure now.

    • Brandon

      Go ahead and think that.

      In the meantime, I’ll be busy with my anti-bias work I do with kids.  We can bemoan the future or we can work with our youth to change it.

      And let’s not generalize about youth.  I hate what I see in response to The Hunger Games, but I know of plenty of kids who were pissed off by the whitewashing of The Last Airbender.

      • http://www.facebook.com/galiotica Nejasna ちゃん

        That’s different, Airbender fans are mostly also anime/manga fans. And otaku are obsessed with accuracy. They will crucify you if you are a random person on the street that mispronounced a random Japanese word. Let alone take something theirs and mess it up completely.  

        • Egg

           …………………………

          No.

          Dude.

          No.

          Not that equating “anime/manga fan” with “otaku” earned you any credibility points in the first place, but thanxxalot 4 erasing ENTIRE SEGMENTS OF AAPI/A FANS WHO… um… perhaps enjoyed having a bit of representation on, um, US television.

          Way to go.

        • http://twitter.com/HowlingBusou Howling

          Anime fans, and otaku, are just as susceptible to racism as any other fandom.

          The Racebending movement wasn’t a bunch of accuracy-wanting nerds, it was people sick of seeing blatant racism in their entertainment. Accuracy was just one of many tools to be used as an argument in defense of not whitewashing.

        • http://twitter.com/HowlingBusou Howling

          Anime fans, and otaku, are just as susceptible to racism as any other fandom.

          The Racebending movement wasn’t a bunch of accuracy-wanting nerds, it was people sick of seeing blatant racism in their entertainment. Accuracy was just one of many tools to be used as an argument in defense of not whitewashing.

        • http://twitter.com/HowlingBusou Howling

          Anime fans, and otaku, are just as susceptible to racism as any other fandom.

          The Racebending movement wasn’t a bunch of accuracy-wanting nerds, it was people sick of seeing blatant racism in their entertainment. Accuracy was just one of many tools to be used as an argument in defense of not whitewashing.

    • http://twitter.com/Ellington3 Rhonda Yearwood

      The end of the world that the Mayan calendar is predicting this year is not sounding so bad if these kids are our future.

  • Mickey

    Apparently, a black life is not valued in fiction or in real life. These so-called people disgust the fuck out of me.

  • Mickey

    Apparently, a black life is not valued in fiction or in real life. These so-called people disgust the fuck out of me.

  • http://www.blasianbytch.com BlasianBytch

    I wonder what the author of the book’s reaction to all this is. She’s said in interviews that Rue was most certainly Black. 

  • http://www.blasianbytch.com BlasianBytch

    I wonder what the author of the book’s reaction to all this is. She’s said in interviews that Rue was most certainly Black. 

    • http://craftedlife.wordpress.com/ Jen

      I was thinking the same thing — it’d nice for her to take really public stand.    The cast, too, for that matter. 

      • http://twitter.com/HowlingBusou Howling

        Pretty much everyone involved from her to the cast are doing their level best to dodge the issue of racism in relation to the series. Hell there was an article where it was essentially decided that the issue surrounding the casting of Katniss was over the actress’ hair colour.

      • http://twitter.com/HowlingBusou Howling

        Pretty much everyone involved from her to the cast are doing their level best to dodge the issue of racism in relation to the series. Hell there was an article where it was essentially decided that the issue surrounding the casting of Katniss was over the actress’ hair colour.

  • http://www.examiner.com/family-in-new-york/rahela-choudhury RCHOUDH

    If these people are acting all peeved off about the POC casting of supporting characters, I can’t imagine what their reaction would have been like if Katniss was also cast with a POC actress (which she very well could have, considering her physical description can be found within many racial/ethnic groups). 

  • http://www.examiner.com/family-in-new-york/rahela-choudhury RCHOUDH

    If these people are acting all peeved off about the POC casting of supporting characters, I can’t imagine what their reaction would have been like if Katniss was also cast with a POC actress (which she very well could have, considering her physical description can be found within many racial/ethnic groups). 

    • brandi

      I can imagine (thinking back to the discussions after it was revealed that Jennifer Lawrence was cast.) Oh boy.