djknom (djknom) wrote in racebending,

I've been a supporter of this cause since the beginning and joined the Facebook Racebending group very early on (think back to when we had no idea how Noah Ringer looked like, when Jesse McCartney was still cast as Zuko, and before we even thought of the term "racebending").  I decided to share a recent thread I posted on the group's discussion board.
Lately, I've been really disillusioned. It seems that for every supporter we have for this cause, there are ten who are adamant in believing that this isn't a problem at all. It's hard not to read all those pro-casting comments. I've read everything from the usual "Aang looks white to me," to "Katara acts like a regular American teenager!", to other pretty outrageous statements like, "I'm Norwegian and when I watched the show I saw the Water Tribe as Norwegian!  THERE CAN'T BE A WORLD WITHOUT WHITE PEOPLE!!  Dao Le thinks they're Asian because HE'S ASIAN.  WE ALL SEE OURSELVES IN THE SHOW!!"  (Dao Le is the animatic editor for the show who does not support the casting.)  I wish people would wake up and realize how ignorant they are and that they're defending racism.

As mentioned in another thread, this needs to stop being a (largely) fan movement. There are some supporters that were never fans of the show, but I feel that we don't have enough of them.

This has probably been mentioned before, but I seriously think we should all band together and try to contact Oprah. She covers a lot of gender, race, class, etc. issues that go largely unnoticed by her general audience until she brings it up. That's when people start caring. This is the Oprah Effect.

I've been working on an e-mail and a letter, but I want to fit so many things in that it's getting a little lengthy. I'm trying to tie this controversy together with other examples of yellowface in the past and present, cultural appropriation, tokenism, etc. but I'm afraid it might be a little too much information in one letter. Have any suggestions? I just want this problem to appear like the dire one it is because not enough people see anything wrong with the practice of yellowface.

She probably gets thousands of letters a month, but I still think it's worth a shot. I recall watching one of her shows in which she invited one of her viewers to be featured because she got hundreds of letters about that woman (I don't remember what that woman did, but that isn't the point). There's strength in numbers and I think we should all try to contact her.

Honestly, we need someone that's well known in the entertainment industry if we want people to start taking us seriously.

To write her a letter:

Harpo Productions
P. O. Box 909715
Chicago, IL 60607


Oprah Winfrey Show
Harpo Studios
1058 W. Washington St.
Chicago, IL 60607

To e-mail Oprah:

To e-mail the producers of the Oprah Winfrey Show:
Tags: contacts
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