When I felt that I was not getting the same opportunities that white males when far less experience got in the same TV workplace, when I wanted to know why my pay was way below theirs...I was told to keep quiet for fear of losing the job I had.
Agents turned me down for representation even when I was on national TV. Why? Because black talent was not seen as marketable or in high demand.
Enough of that crap. People of color are marketable. We are watchable. We can play characters, have on-camera jobs that respectfully reflect our community, our skills, and the world we know.
"Me Too," "Times Up" and the Frances McDormand Oscar night announcement about "inclusion riders" uncorked a big bottle of strong conversation that needed to be poured out.
You've got to hear the Rita Moreno interview segment. At the top of the NPR page, look for *programs & podcasts*. Click onto that, scroll down to WEEKEND EDITION SUNDAY. Click onto WEEKEND EDITION SUNDAY and look for "Rita Moreno To "My Gente': Be Proud Of Who You Are, And Don't Give Up". Go here to get started: NPR.org.
Ms. Moreno said that she was positive she'd get a few good script offers after she won the Oscar. I was positive I'd get an entertainment talk show host offer after my VH1 years. I never did. I got offered auditions to play characters such as half of the thug duo in WEEKEND AT BERNIE'S 2. Two black thugs in New York City performing voodoo on a corpse in a ratty Times Square movie theater men's room with a boombox and a bucket of fried chicken. That was the audition scene. That scene is in the 1993 movie. I kid you not. I'll post some of my VH1 work... but, more importantly, go listen to Rita Moreno. She rocks and she's still relevant. Also, she is comedy gold on the bright, Latino-flavored reboot of Norman Lear's ONE DAY AT A TIME sitcom.