'BLACKkKLANSMAN,' the KKK, and white supremacy during Black History Month
Black History Month in the United States is not simply a month-long exposition of historical tales highlighting the contributions and achievements of African Americans. In many ways our lives as black Americans have been shaped by striving against those who want us to remain forever subordinate—or even dead. However, this February 2019 has seemed more like “White Supremacy Month” instead of a celebration of blackness.
Spike Lee’s film BlacKkKlansman has is up for six Academy Awards at tonight’s ceremony. The categories are Best Achievement in Music Written for Motion Pictures; Best Motion Picture of the Year; Best Adapted Screenplay; Best Achievement in Directing; Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role; and Best Achievement in Film Editing.
The New York Times’ film critic and reviewer A.O. Scott closed his critique of the film with this pungent remark: “Maybe not everyone who is white is a racist, but racism is what makes us white. Don’t sleep on this movie.” F film critic Manohla Dargis points out that the film is “very much about the American present — a direct, furious protest against the Trump era.”
Meanwhile, in the real world, our headlines have been filled with controversy over yearbook photos featuring blackface or Klan costumes, and pro-KKK editorials.