Bethany. 25. Bi. Married. Alaska resident. Likes: Dinosaurs. language(s). linguistics. history. maps. space. science. lgbt folk. science fiction. fantasy. books. movies. literature. and Dinosaurs. Dislikes: mean people. head colds. ignorance.
October 5, 2013 marks a new adventure in life and a new anniversary to celebrate! Special thanks to Reverend Connie for officiating and to our dear friend, Kelly for acting as the photographer/witness. Also special thanks to Geri Cole for making possible this wonderful life I share with Jasika, and shout out to my sister, Emily, for riding rickety bikes with me one night in Brooklyn to find this woman- I found her!
OK, I LOVE Jasika Nicole. I think she’s a great actor and she’s beautiful and she seems very smart and nice, etc. But I think it’s starting to become a liiiiitle annoying that she seems to make everything about race. Which alot of Americans tend to do, tbh. The country is very segrigated, which is a big part of the problem., I think. Sometimes people having a hard time pronouning names doesn’t have anything to do with if the perspn with the hard pronouning names is black. It’s to do with the simple fact that the name is hard to pronounce. Why make every case about that about race?? I’m sorry she’s had bad experiences with white people being stupid enough to not being able to pronounce JASIKA, but come on, not every white person who have trouble saying it has trouble saying it because they’re white.
I’m not black, I am white, so maybe I don’t have any say on the subject, IDK.
Yes, it is a race thing. True, white people can have names that are difficult to pronounce as well. I don’t think I’ve ever had my surname pronounced correctly the first time someone’s said it… but I correct them, and then they say it correctly from then on (for the most part, the world is full of willfully ignorant assholes). That’s not what she’s talking about. She’s talking about how dehumanizing it is for POC, with names like hers, when white people don’t feel they deserve the basic level of respect that you give someone who is more than a passing stranger in your life, which is learning how to pronounce their name correctly. It’s not so much as not being able to pronounce a name as it is not even wanting to learn how to do it, and those are two very different things.
She was asked specifically because of Quvenzhané Wallis and the awful way the press have been treating her and her name the last few days. Yes, her name can be difficult to pronounce just by looking at it, but so is Saoirse Ronan and I bet the press didn’t ask her if they could “just call her Annie instead.” Especially because Quvenzhané has adorably told everyone how to pronounce her name in a video, long before the Oscars happened, and yet people still refuse to even try! They’ll learn how to say difficult Polish surnames, but they won’t learn how to say the name of a 9 year old black girl, they won’t learn how to say Jasika, and that is racism.
I think this is why the Astro Phenomenon is actually a really good way to address the issue here, because it’s not only about mispronouncing names (Astrid isn’t difficult to pronounce), it’s about not respecting someone enough to learn how to say their name correctly after FIVE YEARS. And yes, as she said, they probably would have used the same joke even if Astrid had been a white woman, but because she wasn’t, it became a commentary on a pretty important racial issue.
We are so lucky to have her here and to have her be so willing to talk about some of the things she’s had to deal with as a QWOC in the US entertainment industry. Lots of people wouldn’t be willing to talk so openly in such a public forum. She’s going out on a limb for us and giving us a lot of her precious free time and telling us about some very personal things she’s had to face, the least we can do is take the time to really listen to what she’s saying and try to better understand where she’s coming from.
Because pictures of Jasika Nicole make my friend happy! :)