According to a number of news reports, Sony Pictures Chair Amy Pascal’s job is on the line after a criminal hack and subsequent leaks to the media revealed an exchange of racist emails between herself and mega-producer Scott Rudin.
Her job should be on the line and likely is. If Pascal’s bosses in Tokyo have released a public statement of support, I’m unaware of it. That’s a big tell, as is Pascal’s decision to run to Al Sharpton next week to beg for forgiveness. According to Reuters, Sharpton will decide if she should resign. Allowing Sharpton this opportunity to take over a studio should alone be a firing offense.
Make no mistake, I’m not calling for anyone to be fired. This is just an observation on my part that, due to Pascal’s and Hollywood’s own standards, there really is no other choice but to fire her and exile Rudin.
Pascal was one of the first Hollywood executives to exile Mel Gibson after news of his drunken anti-Semitic rant became public in 2006. The rest of Hollywood soon followed. One of Hollywood’s most bankable stars, who also happened to be an Oscar-winning director, was ruined. And for the last eight years (there was another incident in 2010) Gibson has remained ruined.
Gibson’s rants sickened me. So too do the Pascal/Rudin emails that diminish a black man (forget he’s our President) to the color of his skin and mock him over it. Worse, the exchange reads like two mean girls getting together to feel better about themselves through the petty act of lording their superiority over someone else. In this case, it can be interpreted as racial superiority.
“Should I ask him if he liked DJANGO?” says Pascal, according to the reported e-mails. Rudin writes back: “12 YEARS.” Pascal responds: “Or the butler. Or think like a man?” Rudin: “Ride-along. I bet he likes Kevin Hart.”
In a statement, Pascal said that the emails “are not an accurate reflection of who I am.”
I take her at her word. We all should. No one should be judged or defined by a single lapse of judgment.
Who Amy Pascal is as a person, though, is the not the issue here.
The issue is the message Hollywood sends to black America if racism hurled at a black man is forgiven when racism hurled at Jews is not.
Just days before the Pascal/Rudin emails leaked, Chris Rock wrote a blistering indictment that condemned Hollywood as a “white industry”:
Or how about True Detective? I never heard anyone go, “Is it going to be Amy Adams or Gabrielle Union?” for that show. I didn’t hear one black girl’s name on those lists. Not one. Literally everyone in town was up for that part, unless you were black. And I haven’t read the script, but something tells me if Gabrielle Union were Colin Farrell’s wife, it wouldn’t change a thing.
There are almost no black women in film. You can go to whole movies and not see one black woman. They’ll throw a black guy a bone. OK, here’s a black guy. But is there a single black woman in Interstellar? Or Gone Girl? Birdman? The Purge? Neighbors? I’m not sure there are. I don’t remember them. I go to the movies almost every week, and I can go a month and not see a black woman having an actual speaking part in a movie. That’s the truth.
So what’s Hollywood going to do now — tell the likes of a Chris Rock and all of black Hollywood and black America that racism against Jews is unforgivable but racism against blacks is something we can live with?
That double standard is itself racist.
If you’re looking for a defense of Mel Gibson, you’re not going to find it here. But let’s put our cards on the table: If Amy Pascal or Scott Rudin had directed The Passion of the Christ, they would already be exiled over these emails. Gibson did a terrible thing (twice), but with The Passion, and most especially the game-changing success of The Passion, the provincial, anti-Christian bigots that run much of Hollywood wanted him exiled long before he gave them a reason.
Rudin and Pascal, however, are high-powered, elite leftists in good standing. Both are major Democrat donors (will Hillary accept money from either?) and promoters of left-wing causes through their films. Pascal has received awards for her environmental activism and kudos for calling for self-censorship in order to protect gays from any kind of offense.
Moreover, Rudin is openly gay and Pascal is a woman in this era when leftists and the media are getting Ready for Hillary through the creation of creepy cults of personality around liberal women.
Unfortunately, for Pascal and Rudin, none of that matters.
With the banishment of Mel Gibson, Hollywood set a standard. If that standard is broken for Pascal and Rudin, the message it sends to all of us, but most especially to black America, is unmistakable and inexcusable.
P.S. In a perfect world, the media as a whole would ignore material gained through a criminal hack. Unfortunately, we don’t live in a perfect world. These emails do explain why Hollywood and the mainstream media inaccurately defame America’s Heartland as racist: Projection and guilt. The emails also give us some insight into Obama’s twisted “bitter clinger” worldview. If his “friends” and supporters behave in this way, what’s he to think of his political opponents?
All this effort the media put into framing George Zimmerman and Darren Wilson as racists… If the elite media wanted a race story, all they had to do was email a couple of their cherished Hollywood pals.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC