Damonsplaining is an old-ish story.But the thing that irritated me is this story is that it got reduced down in the mainstream news to "interrupting a black woman to explain diversity to her" when that was beside the point.
Damon was explaining to Effie Brown why diversity was not currently present or even very necessary via the use of the often-thrown, ultimate white race card called "Meritocracy."
BACKGROUND FIRST: Matt Damon said, "...when you’re talking about diversity, you do it in the casting of the film, not the casting of the show.” [Effie] Brown cocked her head to the side, clearly (and rightfully) offended, saying, “whew, wow, ok,” as she waited for Damon to complete his thought.
Damon went on to further chide her, saying, “do you want the best director?” ....Damon indicated that while he appreciated her “flagging diversity,” ultimately he felt that decision should be based “entirely on merit, leaving all other factors out of it.”
Yeah, I haven't heard it.
Yeah, maybe I'll listen to it when Damon's hiring and firing on "Project Green Light"for HBO has people behind the camera and in front of the camera looking like these United States.
I find it hard to imagine that there are too many black people who haven't had this conversation with a white person, especially if many of us should have had the audacity to suggest that a space is too white, then follow up by asking,
"Why aren't there any people of color" doing X "in here?"
In case you've never put yourself in the situation of asking where the black and brown folk are, let me inform you that Matt Damon's answer is what you'll get from white folk word-for-word. And if you take a time machine back to any decade of your choosing beyond slavery, and ask where the black and brown achievers are in any given situation, this same damonsplaining of the happenstance of white superiority via merit is what you'll get.
"The myth of meritocracy is one of the foundational and erroneous ideals of white supremacy.
Whether we are speaking about increasing racial access to education or jobs, the term merit is thrown around as though it exists in opposition to diversity. This happens when employers claim that they would like to hire a person of color for a position, but that they simply cannot find any qualified people of color for the position....
But meritocracy is a myth. The United States was not built on a system of meritocracy. It was built on a system of denied access. Let us not forget that a whole race of people was legal barred from learning to read in this country until 1865. Now we are dismantling public education through..."