This article explores the political and social impact of crime TV shows, and dives into the data in our latest report Normalizing Injustice. Rashad is quoted: “Only someone who doesn’t have to suffer the consequences of a criminal justice system would say that these shows are apolitical.” Indeed, fictional misrepresentations of the criminal justice system on TV may be thwarting much-needed reforms in the real world.
In the Media
In his column, Rashad talks about Normalizing Injustice and how law ‘n order TV shows overrepresent wrongful actions by cops of color while all but erasing the very real hurts our police and prison system inflict on Black women. “The crime genre glorifies, justifies and normalizes the systematic violence… making heroes out of police and prosecutors who engage in abuse, particularly against people of color.”
New COC research reveals that TV shows about law enforcement are really good propaganda for police officers. They frequently create fictions that justify cops inflicting violence or doing an end run around people’s legal rights. When Black people are featured on these shows, they’re almost always portrayed as the perpetrators of crimes, and rarely as victims.
This article talks about our latest report Normalizing Injustice and how depictions of crime and justice on ever-popular shows like Law & Order and Brooklyn Nine-Nine may be setting America backwards. It’s not surprising that ff the 26 programs surveyed in our report, 20 had no Black writers, or only one.
This article talks about what our first-of-its-kind report on crime TV reveals: the majority of series portray police and investigators committing illegal, unjust, and immoral actions in a way that normalized them – making bad actors seem good, and wrongful actions seem right.
Netflix, NBC, ABC Lead in Depictions of Wrongful Actions by People of Color in Crime Dramas, Study Finds
Our new report found that Netflix, NBC and ABC were the top offenders in the 2017-18 TV season when it came to over- and mis-representing “wrongful actions” committed by people of color working in the justice system. These shows give a skewed picture of the very real harms our system inflicts on Black people. Of course, 81% of showrunners on these shows are white men, 78% of the writers are white, and only 9% are Black.
Rashad’s video op-ed for NOW THIS on growing Black representation — in front and behind the camera in Hollywood — and why Ava DuVernay’s A Wrinkle In Time is such a leap forward for children of color. video here.
This Q&A published in the Huffington Post discusses how Rashad Robinson and Color Of Change have built a winning advocacy strategy, harnessing the power and potential of the Internet, to move Black people — and all people in this country — forward. Full Q&A is below. We Built This by Taryn Finley, Huffington Post, 2/1/2019. […]
Published in Nonprofit Quarterly By RASHAD ROBINSON | January 30, 2019 This article is part of NPQ’s cluster about the power of narrative in social change work. (Other articles in this series can be found at the end.) This particular article was originally published by the Haas Institute for a Fair and Inclusive Society at UC Berkeley, on April 18, […]
Rashad speaks at the North Star Fund Awards about how to capitalize on this moment of political agitation following the election. He underscores the necessity of supporting Black-led interventions to accelerate social change and letting Black people truly take the lead in strategy and power in the movement for racial justice. Full video here.
Rashad passionately asks, “Are We Going to Get This Right?” as he speaks about building a real resistance in response to the 2016 elections. He talks about mistaking presence for power, the danger he saw in Trump’s racist attacks on President Obama, and how to build a true movement for change. Full speech here.
Rashad Robinson speaks on how our media presents a distorted view of crime, grossly out of sync with the actual stats, that makes people think Black people are to be feared. Presented by Media Matters and Color Of Change in March 2015. Full video here.