Issa Rae's response to the Oscar nominations lack of diversity says it all

There were a couple of history making moments in this year's Oscar nominations. For the first time ever, a streaming service had more nominations than a traditional studio. Boon Jong-Ho's Parasite made history as the first-ever best picture nomination for a Korean film. But when it comes to nominating female directors and people of color, it's business as usual.

Issa Rae said what a lot of us are feeling when she announced the nominees alongside John Cho. After reading the all-male nominees for best picture, Rae deadpanned, "Congratulations to those men." Bong Joon-Ho was the only director of color nominated.


It's surprising that women were shut out of the Best Director category, considering we've the highest number of female directors in over a decade. A study by the USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative found that, 10.6% of the top movies were directed by women in 2019.

There were so many women who were discussed as possible contenders for the Oscar. Greta Gerwig (Little Women), Lulu Wang (The Farewell), Marielle Heller (A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood), Lorene Scafaria (Hustlers), Kasi Lemmons (Harriet), Alma Har'el (Honey Boy), Jennifer Lee (Frozen II), Melina Matsoukas (Queen & Slim), and Olivia Wilde (Booksmart) are just some of the women who could have been nominated for the award. But at the end of the day, the nominations contained a lot of familiar (and male) names.

Some people think that female directors didn't get a fair shot. "It's a completely unconscious bias. I don't think it's anything like a malicious rejection," Amy Pascal, who produced Little Women, told Vanity Fair. "I don't think that [men] came to the screenings in droves, let me put it that way," Pascal said. "And I'm not sure when they got their [screener] DVDs that they watched them."

The Oscars have a pretty bad track record when it comes to female directors. In the 92-year history of the Academy Awards, only five women have been nominated for Best Director. Kathryn Bigelow made history in 2009 when she became the only woman to win an Oscar for directing The Hurt Locker.

The lack of inclusion in this year's Oscars was highlighted in the acting nominees, making it another year of #Oscarssowhite. Cynthia Erivo was the only person of color nominated for an acting award for her portrayal of Harriet Tubman in Harriet.

And it's not because there wasn't anyone else worthy of being nominated. Jennifer Lopez had Oscar-buzz around her for her role in Hustlers. Lupita Nyong'o for her role in Us and Eddie Murphy for his portrayal of Rudy Ray Moore in My Name is Dolemite were other possible Oscar contenders. But they didn't even nominate Awkwafina, who won a Golden Globe for her performance in The Farewell.

People on Twitter weren't happy about the nominations (and the snubs).










It would be one thing if the Academy had no other options besides Martin Scorsese and Quinten Tarantino, but that's not the case. We don't live in a world where only one voice gets to speak. We're hearing many stories from many different voices. It's time award shows enter the 21st century and give other voices a shot.

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After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

"I was entered into a lottery and I just said to myself, 'Okay, this is going to work out,'" Jackson said. "The next thing I knew, I had won the lottery — in more ways than one."

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Photo: Canva

We're nearly a year into the pandemic, and what a year it has been. We've gone through the struggles of shutdowns, the trauma of mass death, the seemingly fleeting "We're all in this together" phase, the mind-boggling denial and deluge of misinformation, the constantly frustrating uncertainty, and the ongoing question of when we're going to get to resume some sense of normalcy.

It's been a lot. It's been emotionally and mentally exhausting. And at this point, many of us have hit a wall of pandemic fatigue that's hard to describe. We're just done with all of it, but we know we still have to keep going.

Poet Donna Ashworth has put this "done" feeling into words that are resonating with so many of us. While it seems like we should want to talk to people we love more than ever right now, we've sort of lost the will to socialize pandemically. We're tired of Zoom calls. Getting together masked and socially distanced is doable—we've been doing it—but it sucks. In the wintry north (and recently south) the weather is too crappy to get together outside. So many of us have just gone quiet.

If that sounds like you, you're not alone. As Ashworth wrote:

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Courtesy of Creative Commons
True

After years of service as a military nurse in the naval Marine Corps, Los Angeles, California-resident Rhonda Jackson became one of the 37,000 retired veterans in the U.S. who are currently experiencing homelessness — roughly eight percent of the entire homeless population.

"I was living in a one-bedroom apartment with no heat for two years," Jackson said. "The Department of Veterans Affairs was doing everything they could to help but I was not in a good situation."

One day in 2019, Jackson felt a sudden sense of hope for a better living arrangement when she caught wind of the ongoing construction of Veteran's Village in Carson, California — a 51-unit affordable housing development with one, two and three-bedroom apartments and supportive services to residents through a partnership with U.S.VETS.

Her feelings of hope quickly blossomed into a vision for her future when she learned that Veteran's Village was taking applications for residents to move in later that year after construction was complete.

"I was entered into a lottery and I just said to myself, 'Okay, this is going to work out,'" Jackson said. "The next thing I knew, I had won the lottery — in more ways than one."

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I saw this poster today and I was going to just let it go, but then I kept feeling tugged to say something.

Melanie Cholish/Facebook

While this poster is great to bring attention to the issue of child trafficking, it is a "shocking" picture of a young girl tied up. It has that dark gritty feeling. I picture her in a basement tied to a dripping pipe.

While that sounds awful, it's important to know that trafficking children in the US is not all of that. I can't say it never is—I don't know. What I do know is most young trafficked children aren't sitting in a basement tied up. They have families, and someone—usually in their family—is trafficking them.

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via Walt Disney Television / Flickr and jilhervas / Flickr

There comes a moment in everyone's social media life when they get stressed because they've been followed by an authority figure. When your boss, mother, or priest starts following you, social media immediately becomes a lot less fun.

When that happens, it's time to stop posting photos of yourself partying it up with an adult beverage. You gotta hold back on some of your saltier takes, and you have to start minding your language. Also, you have to be very careful about the posts you're tagged in.

Model, TV personality, and author Chrissy Teigen has been suffering through a mega-dose of this form of social media stress since January 20 when President Joe Biden followed her on Twitter. His follow came after Teigen made the request.

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