Shonda Rhimes Is Done Talking About Diversity; says ‘This Is Not the Jim Crow South’


Shonda Rhimes is done talking about “diversity.”

The showrunner of ABC’s entire Thursday primetime programming block received accolades from the National Association of Broadcasters on Monday, at a luncheon that honored diversity by moving the conversation forward from honoring diversity.

“Everyone makes a big deal about how I broke all these barriers in terms of diversity, so I know that I have to talk about it,” Rhimes said in accepting her induction into the NAB Broadcasting Hall of Fame.

In his introduction of the powerful showrunner, NAB President Gordon Smith didn’t once mention Rhimes’ race or gender as qualifiers for her success, as so many commentators so often do. The discussion didn’t dwell on how many black or gay or young or old characters there are in Shondaland shows, because, as Rhimes pointed out, after more than 450 hours of Shondaland programming, these facts are known.

So Rimes took a few minutes to address – and dismiss – the conversation that has become an increasingly frustrating part of her media presence.

“In Shondaland, our shows look like how the world looks. Everyone can see themselves when they turn on the TV on Thursday nights on ABC,” Rhimes said. “To me that was not some difficult brave special decision I made. It was a human one, because I am a human. It wasn’t something we had to bravely fight for, because ABC is also full of humans.”

“This is not the Jim Crow south,” Rhimes added. “We’re not ignorant, so why wouldn’t we [cast that way]? I still can’t believe I get asked about it all the time, as if being normal, TV looking like the normal world, is an innovation.”

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Source: TheWrap | L.A. Ross

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