Fargo actor and stand-up comedian Chris Rock recently did a lengthy interview where he talked from everything about his role in Fargo to Donald Trump and racism.
Speaking with The New York Times, Rock was asked if he believes that racism has improved at all in America. He responded, “It’s real. It’s not going away. I said this before, but Obama becoming the president, it’s progress for white people. It’s not progress for Black people.”
He then went on to use Jackie Robinson as an example, ” It’s the Jackie Robinson thing. It’s written like he broke a barrier, as if there weren’t Black people that could play before him. And that’s how white people have learned about racism. They think, when these people work hard enough, they’ll be like Jackie.”
Rock then stated, “And the real narrative should be that these people, the Black people, are being abused by a group of people that are mentally handicapped. And we’re trying to get them past their mental handicaps to see that all people are equal.”
He continued, “Humanity isn’t progress — it’s only progress for the person that’s taking your humanity. If a woman’s in an abusive relationship and her husband stops beating her, you wouldn’t say she’s made progress, right? But that’s what we do with Black people.”
“We’re constantly told that we’re making progress. The relationship we’re in — the arranged marriage that we’re in — it’s that we’re getting beat less,” he concluded.
Rock also didn’t shy away from political talk. When asked what he and fellow comedian Dave Chapelle talked about at one of his live shows in July, Rock detailed they discussed President Trump, impeachment, and the Democrats’ handling of the coronavirus pandemic.
He stated, “I talked about our political whatever. America. Part of the reason we’re in the predicament we’re in is, the president’s a landlord. No one has less compassion for humans than a landlord. [Laughs.] And we’re shocked he’s not engaged.”
He would then compare the current state of America to the film The Last Emperor. He stated, “Did you ever see that movie “The Last Emperor,” where like a 5-year-old is the emperor of China? There’s a kid and he’s the king. So I’m like, it’s all the Democrats’ fault. Because you knew that the emperor was 5 years old. And when the emperor’s 5 years old, they only lead in theory.”
Rock continued, ” There’s usually an adult who’s like, “OK, this is what we’re really going to do.” And it was totally up to Pelosi and the Democrats. Their thing was, “We’re going to get him impeached,” which was never going to happen. You let the pandemic come in. Yes, we can blame Trump, but he’s really the 5-year-old.”
He then stated, “Put it this way: Republicans tell outright lies. Democrats leave out key pieces of the truth that would lead to a more nuanced argument. In a sense, it’s all fake news.”
Rock would then discuss that the current protests and rioting are “the second great civil rights movement.”
He explained, “Put it this way: This is the second great civil rights movement. And Dr. King and those guys were amazing. But they knew nothing about money. They didn’t ask for anything.”
Rock continued, “At the end of the day, the things we got — it was just, hey, can you guys be humane? All we got was, like, humanity. If they had it to do all over again, in hindsight, there would be some attention paid to the financial disparity of all the years of — let’s not even count slavery, let’s just count Jim Crow.”
“You’re talking about a system that really didn’t end until about 1973. And I’m born in ’65 in South Carolina. I’m probably in a segregated wing of a hospital — there’s no way in the world I was next to a white baby. Even if the hospital wasn’t segregated, I was in a whole other room and that room didn’t have the good milk and the good sheets,” Rock added.
He concluded saying, “My parents couldn’t own property in certain neighborhoods when I was born. There was an economic disparity there, and that was not addressed in the original civil rights movement. It was a huge oversight. So there’s no money and there’s no land. If you don’t have either one of those, you don’t really have much.”
Rock would also be asked about whether or not he wanted to participate in the recent protests. He answered, “Me and my kids, we looked from afar. But we’re in the middle of a pandemic, man, and I know people who have absolutely passed from it. I’m like, dude, this Covid thing is real.”
Chris Rock will appear in the new season of FX’s Fargo that debuts on September 27, 2020. He will also play Detective Zeke Banks in the upcoming film Spiral. He will also appear in an adaptation of Roald Dahl’s Witches.
What do you make of Rock’s statements?