The Woman's Facebook Post Just Inspired Samuel L. Jackson to 'Take a Seat'

March 10th 2017

Kyle Fitzpatrick

Typically if you disagree with something a celebrity says, your comment will never be seen by them.

But that’s not what happened to Gloria Tafa, who wrote a Facebook post offering criticism of a comment made by actor Samuel L. Jackson during a recent radio interview.

Tafa’s post is in response to Jackson’s taking issue with directors casting British black actors in roles that he believes should go to African Americans. The specific movies and roles in question were "Get Out" and "Selma" starring British actors Daniel Kaluuya and David Oyelowo, respectively.

“I know the young brother who's in the movie, and he's British,” Jackson told New York radio station HOT 97. “So, there are a lot of black British actors that work in this country. All the time. I tend to wonder what would that movie have been with an American brother who really understands that in a way.”

Tafa, who is a filmmaker according to Mashable, felt that Jackson’s comments focused on a micro problem that simply isn’t worth debating given the larger, systemic problems at hand. Telling the actor to "take a seat," she explained: “Being bitter and attacking Black British actors who get cast as African-Americans in Hollywood or the Film Industry isn't the way to go. Concentrate on the 'system' if you will.”

The critique highlights the difficulties of persons of color all over the world.

While Jackson's comments seemed to suggest that black men in Britain had it easy compared to their American counterparts, while arguing that the country's had interracial dating for a hundred years. "Some things are universal, but some things ain't," Jackson said.

But Jackson may be overlooking the fact that black men in Britain aren't immune from racial discrimination. Black persons in England and Wales are more likely to face police brutality via being stopped and searched, tasered, arrested, and sent to prison than those who are white. An analysis by The Independent found that targeting is a big part of this problem.

Following last Summer’s Brexit vote, racially motivated hate crimes and attacks rose sharply. The same thing happened in America following the presidential election.

The country is trying to rectify representation and diversity issues. Elected officials in the country are becoming more diverse despite institutions like the police force being "shockingly" non-diverse.

Despite the countries being very different, it’s quite clear that the struggle for black persons in American and England is very, very real. Tafa’s critique highlights this, bringing it to a celebrity like Samuel L. Jackson’s attention in the hopes that he would change his tune.

And it worked; In response to Tafa’s request, Jackson wrote that he is "taking a seat," remarking that her point of view was well said.