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Episode 274 — Free Speech Infringement


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#1 July Diaz

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 03:41 AM

Grantland Pop Culture editor Emily Yoshida joins Andrew Ti all this week to answer some racism questions. Today they discuss New York City Police commissioner Raymond Kelly getting booed off stage at Brown University. Be sure to call us at (323) 389-RACE to ask if anything is racist.

#2 Shariq Torres

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 06:12 AM

Law and Order:SVU is why I stopped watching all of the Law and Order series. Out of all of the L&O incarnations, this is the one I find most odious and full of racist bullshit. I can even remember the ep that made me lose it: Mischa Barton plays a prostitute that witnesses a murder. To find her, Stabler and Benson talk to a black child prostitute, comment on how bad it is that she is a kid and is selling herself. Then after she gives them the information they need to find Barton, they leave the child prostitute to her life. It is never called back. Not even as a throwaway line, like "hey, is that child prostitute doing well in the foster family we put her in?". Absolutely nothing. So, that's a racist thing to do plot-wise ("Hey Larry, let's make the prostitute a black kid!") and casting-wise("Well, we have a part for a prostitute. Should it go to a full grown woman or a black kid? Well, it wouldn't be as believable if it wasn't a black kid, so let's go with the black kid.").

And people who pull that "free speech" argument out of their ass, don't want free speech. They want to be the only voice in the room. If you object to what they are saying, you're "infringing on their free speech" or "not being tolerant of their beliefs" (which 100% of the time are racist as shit and based on denying other folks' humanity). So, not only do they want to be the only voice in the room, they also want you to agree 100% with whatever they said.

Now, they on the other hand, can disagree all they want with whatever they want. It's free speech, after all.

#3 Michael Wo

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 08:30 AM

SVU's probably had so many child prostitutes over the course of 6,000 episodes that eventually every race would be represented.

#4 Michael Wo

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 08:49 AM

Also, has Andrew Ti been listening to a lot of You Made It Weird? He talks about everyone wanting to be Don Draper and then relates that to the "lizard brain."

#5 Shariq Torres

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 08:58 AM

View PostMichael Wo, on 11 November 2013 - 08:49 AM, said:

Also, has Andrew Ti been listening to a lot of You Made It Weird? He talks about everyone wanting to be Don Draper and then relates that to the "lizard brain."


Yeah, and how many of those child prostitutes are throwaway characters that just move the plot along? Usually, if there is a child prostitute the story is about them and getting them out of the situation. Well, if they are white. If they are black, it's a pat on the back and "thanks for telling us where the main character is. Now you go back to a life of hardship and degradation. We have to save Mischa Barton."

#6 Michael Wo

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 09:31 AM

View PostShariq Torres, on 11 November 2013 - 08:58 AM, said:


Yeah, and how many of those child prostitutes are throwaway characters that just move the plot along? Usually, if there is a child prostitute the story is about them and getting them out of the situation. Well, if they are white. If they are black, it's a pat on the back and "thanks for telling us where the main character is. Now you go back to a life of hardship and degradation. We have to save Mischa Barton."


I don't doubt it. I have so little stomach for TV shows about sex crimes and kidnapping and how slowly they pan over a women's bloody nude body that I probably didn't even notice the racial aspects.

To the point about Brooklyn Nine-Nine making the cops look like a fun bunch, I'd only argue that any comedy set in a "serious" workplace will generally have to sidestep those issues if they want to simply be a comedy.

#7 Shariq Torres

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 10:28 AM

View PostMichael Wo, on 11 November 2013 - 09:31 AM, said:


I don't doubt it. I have so little stomach for TV shows about sex crimes and kidnapping and how slowly they pan over a women's bloody nude body that I probably didn't even notice the racial aspects.

To the point about Brooklyn Nine-Nine making the cops look like a fun bunch, I'd only argue that any comedy set in a "serious" workplace will generally have to sidestep those issues if they want to simply be a comedy.


Man, SVU doesn't know if this stuff is supposed to be ugly and gruesome or sexy. The tone shifts wildly depending on the story. And there was one ep where Benson is tied and gonna be orally raped and they cut back between the dude mimicking that he is unzipping his pants to Benson breathing real hard and her mouth open wide. I don't know what they were looking to do there, but even in my original viewing I had one eyebrow cocked, like "huh?"

#8 Michael Wo

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 12:33 PM

Yep. And if you've ever tried to watch "Criminal Minds," it's basically a video handbook for how to kidnap and torture women. I worry about the sort of person who watches it.

#9 Shariq Torres

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Posted 11 November 2013 - 01:31 PM

View PostMichael Wo, on 11 November 2013 - 12:33 PM, said:

Yep. And if you've ever tried to watch "Criminal Minds," it's basically a video handbook for how to kidnap and torture women. I worry about the sort of person who watches it.


The casting of that show makes me laugh so hard. Greg from Dhrama and Greg is on there and he's all super serious all the time, which cracks me up because he was on one of the silliest TV shows of all time. The rest of the team are supermodels, except for the really tall gangly guy (he's been in something else, but I can't name it) and the heavy-set woman who's their version of NCIS's Abby.

Plus, it is so damned serious that it's not fun to watch. Like at all. I tried a couple of times and just turned off the TV. There's no reason to sit through 30 minutes of heavy, serious shit when I could easily not do that.

#10 Kevin Irmiter

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Posted 12 November 2013 - 12:49 PM

This topic is making me so glad I stopped watching these crime dramas over a decade ago.

#11 dlo burns

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 05:01 PM

View PostShariq Torres, on 11 November 2013 - 01:31 PM, said:


The casting of that show makes me laugh so hard. Greg from Dhrama and Greg is on there and he's all super serious all the time, which cracks me up because he was on one of the silliest TV shows of all time. The rest of the team are supermodels, except for the really tall gangly guy (he's been in something else, but I can't name it) and the heavy-set woman who's their version of NCIS's Abby.


Yeah, Gubler. He has a Joni Mitchell giant-mouth so he smiles (never on show of course) and it just looks insane, like it goes on for miles and he has more teeth than the Osmond Family.

Also someone from that show left because he thought the scripts were getting too depraved.

And of course my parents love it.