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Kerry Washington talks diversity in Hollywood, "We're still centering whiteness"

ABC/ Heidi Gutman

When it comes to diversity in Hollywood, Kerry Washington says there is still work that needs to be done and she opened up about it on Tuesday’s episode of the Hollywood, The Sequel podcast.

“When we say that we’re committed to diversity — it’s diverse from what? We’re still centering whiteness as the most important thing and inviting diversity around that or when we talk about inclusivity, there’s still an in and an out,” the Little Fires Everywhere star explained. “We’re still centering certain kinds of people and maybe in tiny fractions allowing other people to the table.”

“There’s just so much of it that needs to reexamined,” she said adding that she hopes “a lot of good” comes out of that reexamination and “that we can see each other, and have courage to make room for each other.”

Washington also shared her optimistic hopes for what progress in realm of diversity would look like in the future. 

“I think what people are realizing is that it’s not enough to just not be racist — that because our institution were built in the fabric of racism, because our country was born with Black Americans being designated a fraction of a human being — it’s not enough to just not be racist, we have to be actively anti-racist and for that desire to come from a deep understanding that we all deserve full rights of humanity,” the 42-year-old actress said.

Yes, all lives matter, but accepting to be in an anti-racist society, we affirm that Black lives matter. I think people are finally understand that and our institutions need to understand that — not just interpersonal relationships,” she continued. “It’s important we’re having these conversations at our dinner tables, in our class rooms and in our highest systems of government.”

By Danielle Long
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