A comparison between actor Ben Affleck's apology and the Baltimore unrest might seem trivial to some, but it actually speaks to why we need to embrace our complex pasts. Selectively editing our backgrounds is a symptom of a larger inability of Americans of all races to honestly assess our history.
The revelation of Ben Affleck's request to Harvard Scholar Henry Louis Gates to remove mention of a slave owning relative who lived 150 years ago caused a media brouhaha, but the actor failed to mention another illustrious relative who gave his life to the Abolitionist cause in the Civil War.
I'm sure you want this whole episode behind you. I get that: I'm related to the most successful transatlantic slave-trading dynasty in U.S. history.
The comments beneath Ben Affleck's Facebook "mea culpa" for having his slave-owner ancestor cut from the PBS show Finding Your Roots were pretty typical.
Actor Ben Affleck, recently the subject of the PBS series Searching For Your Roots, a direct copy, by the way of the BBC series Who Do You Think You Are, found out that his ancestors were once slave-holders.
In some cases, when the finished films were released, curiously, a lot of the criticism for those same "miscast" actors was replaced with effusive praise.
By not overdoing a southern accent while also reportedly voluntarily putting on some weight for the role, actor David Oyelowo shines in this film. And he's not the only one. They all shine.
If this does not change, we fear you and your fellow leaders could be sleep-walking the world towards one of the greatest failures of recent history. It's not too late to rise to the occasion.
Does Chris Hemsworth -- tapped as People's 'Sexiest Man Alive' -- stand up to his powerhouse predecessors?
We must distinguish critiquing an ideology from being "racist," and hateful towards a religion. And most importantly, we shouldn't silence a conversation "that never gets started."
So, proudly, claims the official website of the Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia in Washington, D.C. If you were to ask imprisoned liberal Saudi writer Raif Badawi, you may hear otherwise. Or not. He may not be able to tell you what he really thinks.
Since his highly controversial exchange with Ben Affleck and Nicholas Kristof on October 3rd, Bill Maher has insisted that he's simply stating the unpleasant facts about the Muslim world. But there are two particularly noxious myths that need to be debunked.
Maher is right that we should stand up for liberal principles everywhere, but it does no justice to our principles if our arguments are stacked on a foundation of stereotypes.
The day liberals confuse real talk and passionate debate with bigotry is the day Bill O'Reilly and Fox news shape the narrative of our nation.
If the answer to this question is "no," a case can still be made that the cable news network is on track to rival Fox News in promoting the worst Islamophobic stereotypes. The latest controversy involving an interview with Reza Aslan raises serious concerns about CNN's willingness to tap into and reinforce widespread prejudices against Islam in order to generate ratings.
Ben is talking about Muslims who aspire to the same things that all people of genuine good will aspire to, aspirations widely shared by most Americans. Hard work. Raising a family. Giving to charity. Practicing our faith. And the opportunity to do so free of judgment -- certainly free of fear or violence.