This is late. Noted and realized. But the controversy that surrounded the movie “The Hunger Games”, in 2012, based on the book of the same name by author Suzanne Collins and one of the characters, Rue, points towards something that seems to be a very deep, ingrained psychological thing with American media when it comes to white characters and non-white characters. Rue is described in the book as dark-skinned.
Many fans of the books were upset about this and expressed their anger through Twitter. Here’s some samples.
“And for the record, im still pissed that rue is black. Like you think she might have mentioned that…? Is that just me, or…”
“Some ugly little girl with nappy add hair. Pissed me off. She was supposed to be cute and at least remind her of Prim”-@GagasAlexander
“Why is Rue black? Not gonna lie kinda ruined the movie”-@Maggie_mcd11
Here’s the site that links more these tweets: http://au.complex.com/pop-culture/2012/03/the-25-most-racist-tweets-about-the-hunger-games/8
The hatred and anger here is just astonishing. At the time of the movie, this was a kid. Amandla Stenberg, the actress that played Rue, was only 15. Imagine, all this hatred and anger being directed towards a 15 year old for her skin colour.
These tweets implies that [b]white is normal[/b]. It implies that [b]white is the default and everything else is abnormal.[/b] It also points towards very poor reading comprehension skills and a refusal to accept any other character than white as proven by the person who wrote the first tweet who seemed to have not read the book properly. The author herself has described the character of Rue as “dark-skinned with dark hair…”.
Frankly speaking, this is more than disturbing. This is worrying. Very, very worrying. It demonstrates that some teenagers [b]cannot[/b] empathize with a character if they do not share the same skin colour as them or look exactly like them. It points towards a kind of narcissism and self-absorbed behaviour that people are showing where white characters are given more value than a black character simply because of the virtue of their skin colour. The message that these tweets send is: [b]White is right. White is normal. Anything else is not[/b]But really, the message should be this.
[b]Non-white characters are human too. Non-white is normal too. And non-white are deserving of the same respect and hold equal value that white characters are given[/b].