zoe-saldana-cover-shoot-03-editedActress Zoe Saldana has been inserting the proverbial foot in her mouth in recent weeks. The “Colombiana” starlet has been media blitzing for the upcoming “Star Trek Into Darkness” film and leaving a trail of disrespect in her wake. A fellow Clutch editor, Yesha Callahan, thinks Saldana needs a dictionary and a clue. I concur and also think she needs to enroll in an Introduction to Critical Race Theory course ASAP.

During an interview with BET, Saldana candidly discussed how she views race, alleging “there’s no such as people of color.”

When asked how she racially-identifies, Saldana responded:

I find it uncomfortable to have to speak about my identity all of the time, when in reality it’s not something that drives me or wakes me up out of bed everyday. I didn’t grow up in a household where I was categorized by my mother. I was just Zoe and I could have and be anything that I ever wanted to do…and every human being is the same as you. So to all of a sudden leave your household and have people always ask you, “What are you, what are you” is the most uncomfortable question and it’s literally the most repetitive question. I can’t wait to be in a world where people are sized by their soul and how much they can contribute as individuals and not what they look like.

She wasn’t done retorting.

I literally run away from people that use words like ethnic. It’s preposterous! To me there is no such thing as people of color cause in reality people aren’t white. Paper is white. People are pink, it’s a bit ridiculous when I have to explain to a human being, that is an adult like I am, that looks intelligent but for some reason I have to question his intelligence and explain to him as if he was a two year old, my composition in order for him to say, “Oh I guess I can chill with you, I can work with you.” I will not underestimate a human being and I will not allow another human being to underestimate me. I feel like as a race, that’s a minute problem against the problems we face just as women versus men, in a world that’s more geared and designed to cater towards the male species.

That is a situation that, I spend time thinking about, and working towards ending that, I guess we could talk about that.

Saldana’s decision to accept the role of Nina Simone as a labor of “love” makes her view of race and racism all the more puzzling. It appears as if donning Blackface and depicting Simone has done little to connect the actress with the crooner’s spirit. You can’t portray Nina Simone without realizing how intricately race was intertwined with her life and career.

In fact, communities of color must contend with race and racism daily, from the school-to-prison pipeline to the slow siphoning of resources from our schools. But I guess for women like Saldana, we’re post-racial, Simone’s legacy be-damned.

Maybe the ultimate fixer, Olivia Pope Kerry Washington, can hip her fellow thespian to the truth about post-racial fantasies.


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  • Adrian Marshall

    It’s funny how this “ethnic-free” actress who doesn’t believe in the ter people o f color because “white people are pink” seems to differentiate on color enough to only date the Pink Man. It’s also further curious that in the pink man produced movies they choose to have her don blue or green skin playing alien characters. What is perhaps the most ironic thing here is that she would not be playing Nina Simone or O’Hura in Star Trek or even her characters in “Drumline” or “Guess Who” if not for her (non-existent) color. All of her recent characters with the exception of “Colombiana” have been specifically black characters. She’s not winning parts to play characters that are written in a way as to be any race. When she does get those parts, as stated above, her color is altered digitally as a truly raceless ALIEN!

  • monmony

    misleading title. She didn’t say that people of color don’t exist and I feel it’s those who don’t get what she’s saying that should get ‘a dictionary and a clue’. Reading the whole quote to put it in context might help too.
    What the heck is wrong with this quote here?

    ‘I can’t wait to be in a world where people are sized by their soul and how much they can contribute as individuals and not what they look like’

    are you ok?

    It’s obvious that she’s criticizing non poc for singling out poc making them all feel like they have to explain what they are all the time. You can’t tell me she doesn’t get questions that no one would make to white actresses.
    I see nothing wrong about her assertion that, basically, it’s wrong to always imply with the poc distinction (I think she means when it is used by non poc people) that white people are the norm and default humans while colored people need their own definition as humans and thus she, as a black girl, must explain her race and ethnicity to interviewers all the time.

    She has never denied being black nor that hollywood is racist and she’s obviously comfortable talking about her heritage so it’s obvious to who her comment is directed to.

    • Anna

      “To me there is no such thing as people of color cause in reality people aren’t white. ”
      Love her, hate her, that is literally what she said. “there is no such thing as people of colour” and then carried on explaining how paper is white and white ppl are “pink” or w/e.

  • Fiona

    This is what a Modern day
    Judas looks like Family! Daughters of SAMA’EL, may our ancestors deal with your kind one by one. Wazungu will use her, and then her children, she just think it won’t happen to her! Zoe, I’ll be praying for you. ….NOT!

  • GeekMommaRants

    The American definition for Zoe would be black or African American, but outside the US Zoe would be colored or half-caste as the South Africans would say. Many would also consider Zoe to be of Arab lineage. I think it’s really difficult to be interracial as most people categorize folks by their physical appearance and nothing else. This is an issue for the biracial and multiracial peoples the world over.

    • yeah yeah

      Arab lineage? LOL!

    • GeekMommaRants

      I said Zoe COULD BE an Arab from Sudan or Somalia. This is wrong?

    • MB

      She’s not African American. African American is a specific ethnic group.

      She’s Afro Latina.

  • Roland94

    She’s living that Color-Blind/Individualism lifestyle, she’ll eventually get her wake up call, but then again ive read an article where she talks about being referred to as “mixed” but corrects them by saying “im a black woman”.
    So in a way I think this woman is confused, she reminds me of Halle Berry, both have a strange complex on race, covering their eyes and ears to the aspects it plays in our careers.
    Kerry washington’s quotes were perfect for a response, just perfect.