I know it’s been a while, Ars Marginal. But Neo and Triple J and Javan have been holding it down quite nicely while I’ve been away.
Now that I’m back, I want to open up a few cans of worms by getting us to dig deeper into something I’ve been noticing about Regina Mills (aka the Evil Queen), my
future wife favorite character on ABC’s Once Upon A Time. I’ve been asking this on Facebook, Tumblr, and LiveJournal, so it’s time to bring this discussion to Ars Marginal too. It’s been fucking with me for a while, and it’s time to get it out in the open.
You wanna know what’s been gnawing at me, dear reader? It’s something I’m seeing quite a bit when people talk about race and diversity and my show. What happens is that somebody will always bring up the lack of racial diversity on the show by saying that there are no main characters of color. Or, if they acknowledge that Lana Parrilla is Latina, they still say Regina is White because there’s no evidence that she’s Latina and/or a woman of color. Even other people of color do this!
But anybody who’s heard me gush about Lana Parrilla (aka the most beautifullest, wonderfullest, amazingest person ever aka My Other Boo) knows that she’s a proud Latina*. Look at dis gawjus BAMF!
She ain’t Cameron Diaz or Christina Aguilera, OK?
(*Yeah, yeah, I know her mom’s Sicilian and all, so she’s technically biracial. But she’s biracial in the same way Barack Obama is. In other words, if she ever got caught with a bag of weed at the airport, they will not say, “Half Sicilian actress Lana Parrilla was arrested for possession of marijuana.” They’ll say, “Latina actress Lana Parrilla was arrested for possession of marijuana.”)
Now, I can get into all the reasons why saying one (Lana Parrilla doesn’t count as a person of color) or the other (even if she is a POC, her character is still White) is fucked up, but I ain’t doing that right now. What I wanna know is: what the hell is going on when we say shit like this? What kind of fucked up mindjob got done on us that we can look at a woman of color, know she’s a woman of color, but still say, “This character is White”?
What the hell is going on with that shit? What does it say about us and our world when we do that? How can we change shit up to stop erasing POCs even when we’re looking straight at POCs?
I wanna hear from y’all.