Actress Viola Davis has taken to Twitter to respond to the seemingly ignorant and discourteous New York Times article, reviewing ABC’s new drama, How To Get Away With Murder. In the article, writer Alessandra Stanley managed to not only slam the show’s creator, Shonda Rhimes, but also compared Davis to lighter-skinned actresses, like Halle Berry and Kerry Washington.
“The actress doesn’t look at all like the typical star of a network drama,” the article read. “Ignoring the narrow beauty standards some African-American women are held to, Rhimes chose a performer who is older, darker-skinned and less classically beautiful than [Kerry Washington], or for that matter Halle Berry, who played an astronaut on the summer mini-series Extant.”
“You may shoot me with your words, you may cut me with your eyes, you may kill me with your hatefulness,” Davis tweeted, quoting Maya Angelou’s Still I Rise. “But still, like air, I’ll rise!!!”
In the article, Stanley also wrote that “When Shonda Rhimes writes her autobiography, it should be called How to Get Away With Being an Angry Black Woman.” Rhimes responded via Twitter, writing:
“Final thing: (then I am gonna do some yoga): how come I am not “an angry black woman” the many times Meredith (or Addison!) rants?
“Wait. I’m” angry” AND a ROMANCE WRITER?!! I’m going to need to put down the internet and go dance this one out. Because ish is getting real.”
Davis, who has always spoken out about working in Hollywood as a Black actress, explained on Oprah’s Next Chapter in 2013 that “not only in the sheer number of roles that are offered and that are out there, but in the quality of roles …When you only have two or three categories for black actresses, therein lies [the problem] because you want to work. So, it’s a natural instinct if you throw a piece of cheese in a room full or rats that they’re going to claw at each other. It’s natural.”
Exclusive: The Bullet Scars That Will Forever Haunt Sheryl Lee Ralph’s Son, Etienne Maurice
Sheryl Lee Ralph shared a graphic photo on Instagram earlier this week of her son, Etienne Maurice, laying in a hospital bed bandaged up from bullet wounds. The purpose of the image was to be yet another voice calling to end gun violence.
On Wednesday, students across the country walked out of class to protest against gun violence, something that hit home for Ralph four years ago. “This mother wants #gunreform now! #guncontrol now,” she wrote.
It was during a night out in West Philadelphia that Ralph’s then 22-year-old child was robbed at gunpoint and shot three times; twice in the leg and one which grazed his forehead.
So as Ralph joined Wednesday’s national conversation about gun laws, HipHollywood talked exclusively with Etienne who shared exactly what went down the night a gun could have taken his life for good.
“I was shot four years ago, November 9 … I was black out drunk. The next thing I know I remember I woke up in the hospital, doctor said I had two bullet holes in my leg and a grazed bullet hole above my eyebrow.”
Maurice, who was robbed for his iPhone and his wallet, went on to tell us that this is something that he is reminded of constantly. “Having been shot is something that I carry with me every day. I still have numbness at the bottom of my leg from the nerve damage.”
And while he will always remember how he felt knowing his life almost ended, Etienne had a hard time fathoming how his famous mother felt. “We had the conversation about it last week and she said she peed on herself,” he told us.
For Maurice, he’s proud to see young children use their voices to make change. “There’s so many angles where we can talk about gun violence and how it’s effecting different communities,” he said. “Gun reform needs to take place now.”
Since that night, he hasn’t picked up a drink and has been now sober for four years. As for the suspects, a father-son duo, they are behind bars for attempted man slaughter.
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