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The Race Card

The Race Card

Academy Awards show producer Gil Cates has said that he chose Chris Rock as host in the hopes of luring younger males to turn on ABC this Sunday night. Given all the pre-show chatter over whether Rock will somehow lose control on live TV, Cates just may get his wish as viewers tune in to see a potential train wreck.

In a commentary about the strangely simmering controversy over comedian Chris Rock hosting the Oscars this year, David Poland stops short of playing the race card in explaining the undercurrent of ‘concern’ that continues in run-up to the Academy Awards ceremony. But he should play it already, because its being played by the media.

[Photo by Bob D’Amico/ABC

In a post Super Bowl ’04 era, fueled by conservative websites like The Drudge Report, fears of a black entertainer losing control on live, national television are being whipped up. “I’ve been on TV and not cursed before, I’ve been on TV and been funny not cursing,” Rock countered in a conversation with Ed Bradley on “60 Minutes” on Sunday. He was forced to further address the matter on the Tonight Show last night.

In a year when black stories (“Hotel Rwanda,” “Ray”) and black actors (Jamie Foxx, Don Cheadle, Sophie Okonedo, Morgan Freeman) are nominated for top Oscars, why is the media pushing stereotypes.

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