Larry Wilmore's Examination of Black Protests Is Worth Watching

January 23rd 2015

Ashley Nicole Black

The Nightly Show with Larry Wilmore is hilarious. In the first episode, they open by reporting that Al Sharpton has called an emergency meeting to discuss protesting the Academy Awards for the lack of nominations for people of color (there were also very few nods for women). Larry Wilmore calls Al Sharpton the "Black Batman," because he's always showing up to be the hero black people deserve, but don't need... hmmm, maybe he's just the one they don't particularly want? Sharpton's response to the whitest Oscars ever (well, the 1950s were probably worse, right?), leads Wilmore to ask the question,  "Are we protesting too much?"
In his hilarious monologue, he lists some of the many protests that are going on around the country. Watch it here:

All of these protests are real! Including the "Black Brunch" one. It sounds like a punch line, but its a real protest. And its pretty awesome.

Wilmore wonders whether protests are as effective today; when the requests being made aren't for traditional rights, like voting or integration, but for less tangible ideas like the ability to walk on the street safely. Some of the protests he mentions (like the one by Harry Potter fans) have been more successful than others. For people interested in strategies for improving civil rights through protest, there is something valuable to learn from studying contemporary protests and their effectiveness. 
Here are some links to articles where you can read up on all of the protests Wilmore mentions in this monologue: