Christian Bale shares why white men should step aside in favor of diverse voices.

Christian Bale — aka Batman and one of America's most notable "psychos" — just said what we're all thinking when it comes to white men of privilege.

While doing press for his latest movie, "Hostiles," Bale and the film's costars dropped into the AOL series "Build" for an in-depth interview.

During the 30-minute conversation, the topic turned to the political state of the U.S. Bale doesn't see our divisiveness rooted in "red state/blue state" conflicts, but rather our lack of diverse voices, specifically in leadership.


“Our culture will be so much richer the day that we stop saying, ‘Hey, it’s all white dudes who are running things,’” Bale said.

"Whether that be Hollywood, whether that be Washington, you know. We’re going to get, in Hollywood, so much better films and so much more interesting stories being told and America will become the America that the rest of the world sees it as, that makes it unique."

Bale's belief that America can and will be better is rooted in love for his adopted country. The Englishman described the United States as "beautiful" and "brilliant."

"It's the reason I moved here. It's the reason my kids have American accents," he said. "It's a country of inclusion, of invitation."

Or at least, it can be.

(Fast forward to 19:20 for Bale's take.)

Why is Bale spot-on? Privileged white dudes stole this country from Native Americans and built it on the backs of black and brown labor, while setting themselves and their descendants up to benefit.

White dudes gave us the Three-Fifths Compromise, the Trail of Tears, the Great Depression, internment camps, the War on Drugs, the NRA, "Dilbert" and Uber.

Sure, they gave us some good things too (looking in your direction, "Home Alone"). But after more than 241 years of running the country and almost every industry in it, perhaps it's best to let women and people of color take the reins for a while.

President Donald Trump shakes hands with Paul Ryan (R-WI) while Vice President Pence stands between them awkwardly. Photo by Bill Clark-Pool/Getty Images.

And while Christian Bale may seem like a surprising man to applaud, given previous allegations of misconduct, in this case and at this moment in time, he's right.

I'm not proposing anyone build a statue in his honor — or even forgive his past behavior.

But more white men of privilege should speak out with the conviction and honesty he did and work to make this country a better place for everyone, especially people too often left out out of the conversation. (Looking at you, Matt Damon.)

Photo by WOCinTech Chat/Flickr.

What we need more is new ideas and fresh voices.

More women. More people of color. More LGBTQ people. More people with disabilities. More people living below the poverty line. More immigrants. More of everyone who makes this country so unique and beautiful.

And please — at least for a while — fewer white men making decisions for the rest of us.

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Shanda Lynn Poitra was born and raised on the Turtle Mountain Reservation in Belcourt, North Dakota. She lived there until she was 24 years old when she left for college at the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks.

"Unfortunately," she says, "I took my bad relationship with me. At the time, I didn't realize it was so bad, much less, abusive. Seeing and hearing about abusive relationships while growing up gave me the mentality that it was just a normal way of life."

Those college years away from home were difficult for a lot of reasons. She had three small children — two in diapers, one in elementary school — as well as a full-time University class schedule and a part-time job as a housekeeper.

"I wore many masks back then and clothing that would cover the bruises," she remembers. "Despite the darkness that I was living in, I was a great student; I knew that no matter what, I HAD to succeed. I knew there was more to my future than what I was living, so I kept working hard."

While searching for an elective class during this time, she came across a one-credit, 20-hour IMPACT self-defense class that could be done over a weekend. That single credit changed her life forever. It helped give her the confidence to leave her abusive relationship and inspired her to bring IMPACT classes to other Native women in her community.

I walked into class on a Friday thinking that I would simply learn how to handle a person trying to rob me, and I walked out on a Sunday evening with a voice so powerful that I could handle the most passive attacks to my being, along with physical attacks."

It didn't take long for her to notice the difference the class was making in her life.

"I was setting boundaries and people were either respecting them or not, but I was able to acknowledge who was worth keeping in my life and who wasn't," she says.

Following the class, she also joined a roller derby league where she met many other powerful women who inspired her — and during that summer, she found the courage to leave her abuser.

"As afraid as I was, I finally had the courage to report the abuse to legal authorities, and I had the support of friends and family who provided comfort for my children and I during this time," she says.

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One little girl took pictures of her school lunches. The Internet responded — and so did the school.

If you listened to traditional news media (and sometimes social media), you'd begin to think the Internet and technology are bad for kids. Or kids are bad for technology. Here's a fascinating alternative idea.

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Norton

This article originally appeared on 03.31.15

Kids can innovate, create, and imagine in ways that are fresh and inspiring — when we "allow" them to do so, anyway. Despite the tendency for parents to freak out because their kids are spending more and more time with technology in schools, and the tendency for schools themselves to set extremely restrictive limits on the usage of such technology, there's a solid argument for letting them be free to imagine and then make it happen.

It's not a stretch to say the kids in this video are on the cutting edge. Some of the results he talks about in the video at the bottom are quite impressive.

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