Blackwashing, I’ve talked about it extensively in that past, shared with you all how much I absolutely hate it, and why I wholeheartedly believe it will have a horrible ramification for Black people’s image and legacy! Yet, as the days go on, it seems that the majority of Black people are in support for it rather than against it and that is very concerning!
Legacy; something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor or from the past! Sure, that word has many meanings depending on how you’d like to interpret it but this one here is the one version I feel most people can agree with. Let me ask you something. Look at the picture below, and ask yourself this (regardless of race), “Is this what I want my future predecessor to take from me?” What is actually the end goal here? What do we take from this method of inclusion? We’ve even begun to Blackwash historical figures, I mean where do we draw the line? Do they not have historical figures of their own? Worthy of having their stories told? What kind of a message are we sending here?
Look, I know their end goal is to just pretend that by Blackwashing characters long enough, those who’ll come after us long into the future won’t even realize that they were once white characters, heck it happened to me! Characters that I thought were original and unique turned out to be Blackwashed versions of White characters. Once I learned that truth, I couldn’t see the characters as the original anymore. He/she felt like a fraud, an alternate version of the original character!n It made me become more aware of the deceit. When I tried to point this out, I was called all sorts of names, hurtful ones. I didn’t get it, and it angered me even more!
It goes beyond being accurate to the source material, it felt like they’re being hypocrites to the very method they once scorned and condemned. I mean, just try and whitewash a Black character in a fanart and see the hell you’ll unleash. There’s a psychological effect at play here. There’s also integrity and pride at stake. Black people who want to be respected by everyone, are doing things that will ultimately be used to make fun of them.
Have you ever wondered why Black people are more active and adamant to see characters Blackwashed, instead of being more vocal to support new stories that involve new characters? How vocal they are to be included in fiction that honestly never planned on having a Black character in it? How they celebrate a Blackwashed character in a way to gloat and mock others? Heck, even fanart has this trend where they do it to be “seen”. Yet, they never felt like by advocating for original characters, that they’d be seen. I’ve noticed it and it’s quite unhealthy in my own opinion.
And to add fuel to the fire, when said Blackwashed character has actually been accepted by the majority gets criticized as many other fictional characters has before, they turn incredibly defensive and assume the criticism stems from their race. I mean look no further than Amber from Invincible! I actually don’t even believe Black people are ready to be seen if this is how they react!
I’ve heard every argument for Blackwashing, and not a single one has made any logical sense to me. Every argument, all of them, revolve around an emotional plea, devoid of all reasons! It’s very clear that Blackwashing in Hollywood is a ploy to pander to an emotionally unstable community while waving the “virtue savior” flag! A ploy to strengthen their hold and cement this idea that everything on “that side” is what you want to be.
There’s no sense of respect behind it all! And it needs to stop, yet the people it will affect the most are unwilling to hear it. I fear that if this goes on for much longer, the damage will be too great! I want diversity just like everyone else, and I’m working on that too, but I can already see how just the mere presence of a Black character in any fiction has become even more political than it was before. It has become a statement rather than a pure-hearted action and it sickens me.