Viola Davis just got away with a good old fashioned bitchslap. Upon collecting her entirely deserved, well-warranted teal colored miniature naked mime trophy at the SAG Awards for ‘outstanding performance by a female actor in a drama series,’ Davis set the press straight on the race debate encircling The Oscars right now.
“We have become a society of trending topics. Diversity is not a trending topic. It’s just not.” said Davis. “I’ve always considered myself an actor since I got my equity card in 1988. I’ve never put any limitations on myself. I felt like I could play Chekhov, any character in Chekhov and Shakespeare in Arthur Miller, in August Wilson. I see myself as an actor. No matter what is going on in the business, I will find a way to practice my art, and all of the actors of color who I know don’t place any limitations on themselves either. So regardless of what is going on with the Academy, regardless of what is going on in Hollywood, they will find a way to be excellent. We always have and we always will.”
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Woah dude, can we get a round of slow claps for the composed, steely, and articulate Viola Davis or what? Damn. She notes that the race issue is bigger than a trending topic; and let me be the first to say that as a self-proclaimed viral news writer I’ve on occasion played a selfish hand in the ongoing perpetuation of meaningful topics, debates, arguments for the sake of clicks, views, and you sharing my words with a friend. Davis is managing to instill a meaning into the madness. She’s encouraging everyone–the writers, the fans, The Oscar panel–to take a minute, and potentially reassess the status quo, and how we got to where we are right now with this boiling controversy.