“I’m here at the Academy Awards, otherwise known as the White People’s Choice Awards,” Rock began with. “You realize if they nominated hosts, I wouldn’t even get this job. So y’all would be watching Neil Patrick Harrisright now.”
Rock then discussed African Americans boycotting the Oscars due to the lack of Black nominees, stating, “I thought about quitting. I thought about it real hard. But, I realized, they’re gonna have the Oscars anyway. They’re not gonna cancel the Oscars because I quit.”
“Now the thing is, Why are we protesting?” Rock continued. “The big question: Why this Oscars? Why this Oscars, you know? It’s the 88th Academy Awards. It’s the 88th Academy Awards, which means this whole no black nominees thing has happened at least 71 other times. O.K.?”
Rock then specifically called out Jada Pinkett Smith and others for protesting the show, saying, “But what happened this year? What happened? People went mad. Spike got mad, — got mad, and Jada went mad, and Will went mad. Everybody went mad, you know?”
“Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna’s panties,” Rock quipped. “I wasn’t invited.”
Rock did turn the speech a bit more serious, though, saying, “It’s not fair that Will was this good and didn’t get nominated…if you want black nominees every year, you need to just have black categories. That’s what you need. You need to have black categories.”
Rock continued to address the political issue in the room, saying, “The real question everybody wants to know, everybody wants to know in the world is: Is Hollywood racist? Is Hollywood racist?”
He then answered the question he posed, saying, “You’re damn right Hollywood is racist. But it ain’t that racist that you’ve grown accustomed to.”
With the political nature of Rock’s speech, it will definitely be interesting to see the direction the Oscars go in moving forward. Will they listen to how people are feeling and make the nominations more diverse? Or, will things continue the way they’ve always been?
Sound off in the comments below with your thoughts.
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