This is another case of when white folks need to be mind their privileged business. Actresses and heavy hitters in Tinsletown are calling for a boycott of Georgia after Stacey Abrams lost the governor race to openly racist Brian Kemp. So, Georgia has to endure Kemp's Jim Crow tacitic as governor and now white Hollywood wants to take away a huge part of the Peach State's economy that has grown because of Black creatives.
As Remy Ma once said, "Are you dumb?"
In case you missed it, in Abrams' Friday speech, which was not a concession but an acknowledgment of Kemp's vile corruption, she beautifully said, “I acknowledge that former Secretary of State Brian Kemp will be certified as the victor in the 2018 gubernatorial election, but to watch an elected official who claims to represent the people in this state baldly pin his hopes for election on suppression of the people’s democratic right to vote has been truly appalling.”
Voter suppression won in Georgia and now people are looking for a solution. Bizarrely, actresses like Alyssa Milano and Hollywood power players like Frank Rich are calling for the entertainment industry to boycott Georgia, which would only adversely affect the very people Abrams was trying to help.
Before Kemp won via voter suppression, Frank Rich wrote on Twitter the night of the election, "If Kemp wins in Georgia, Hollywood should put its money where its mouth is and pull all production out of the state."
After Abrams acknowledged Kemp's win on Friday, Milano wrote on Twitter, "There are over 20 productions shooting in Georgia. Is the entertainment industry willing to support the economy of a totally corrupt state that suppresses democracy; where the winner isn’t the best choice for the people but the best schemer or crook?"
Milano and Rich had several people who agreed with them. See below:
While boycotts can be effective, the boycott from the likes of Milano and Rich is an example of so-called “well intentioned” white people making bold statements from a position of privilege without thinking about who it might affect.
In addition, Georgia is not just a second home to Hollywood, it's a main hub for Black Hollywood and has been for over 10 years. In 2008, the state began the Entertainment Industry Investment Act, which gave qualified productions a 20 percent tax break. This was the beginning of many Black entertanment companies booming in Georgia.
In 2011, Warrington Hudlin, who is the president of the Black Filmmaker Foundation, told The New York Times, "Atlanta is really becoming the black Hollywood,' Mr. Hudlin said. Because many black filmmakers are working on tighter budgets than white filmmakers, they need to save money and Georgia helps them do that, he said."
Georgia Governor Nathan Deal wrote on Twitter back in August, "As the No. 1 state for film production, Georgia was home to a record 455 film and television productions in FY 18 that generated a total economic impact of $9.5 billion. I’m proud to see the film industry continue to thrive in our communities."
While there is no way to know how much of the 9.5 billion come from Black dollars, it is arguably more than one would think from reality shows to the only Black-owned studio, Tyler Perry Studios, which is where portions of Black Panther was filmed.
Milano, Rich and others, boycotting Georgia is not the solution and even Stacey Abrams agrees. See the reaction below from Abrams and others.
Frank Rich, Alyssa Milano and the rest of white Hollywood, stay in your privileged lane. Boycotting Georgia is not effective, especially when there will be little to no affect on your lives.
Photo by Jessica McGowan/Getty Images Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images