Issa Rae is a bad bitch. Before you start, no, I don't feel bad saying that, because she sees "bitch" as a term of endearment, herself. But, I digress. Issa is one of the most prominent women of color in the entertainment space right now after wrapping up a successful season 2 of her hit HBO dramedy Insecure. The show is not only a fan favorite, but a legitimate catalyst for important conversations about self care, depression, safe sex, self-worth, and countless other topics. It's also just fun as hell.
Issa isn't afraid to address issues of white privilege on the show, as evidenced by storylines like Molly finding out she's being paid significantly less than her white male colleague. And Issa is definitely not afraid to voice her strong support for the black community IRL, as evidenced by the above answer to Variety on the Emmys red carpet last month.
So, it comes as no surprise that Issa is determined to continue provoking thoughtful conversations about the side effects of white privilege, and how it affects communities of color. In a recent, brief conversation with The Cut, Issa broke it all the way down:
They don’t get that we’re not all starting from the same starting point. Straight, cis, white men don’t have the same obstacles—there’s not much in their path. That’s not to say they don’t have any of their own problems, but the playing field is not level by any means. It’s easy for people to dismiss your history, dismiss where you came from. Just because we graduated from the same college doesn’t mean we have the same opportunities. There’s bias, even in the hiring process, and that’s something not enough people are aware of. It feels like a vicious Catch-22 when there aren’t diverse people behind the scenes.
That [lack of diversity] alters the company or organization perspective, which means they’re not going to have people who look like the people they are trying to recruit. Even when we do these diversity events, I find that we tend to include other diverse people who also know the struggle and who are already familiar with the burdens, where the audience should be mostly white men and women. People aren’t aware, and they choose not to be. For so many people, unfortunately, the issues with people of color don’t affect them, so why would they burden themselves with caring?