January 11, 2016

Mixed reactions to DiCaprio's speech

Reactions to Leonardo DiCaprio's Golden Globes speech poured in quickly. Some of them were off-the-charts ecstatic:

Leonardo DiCaprio's Golden Globes Acceptance Speech Is One of the Most Important He's Ever Made

Leonardo DiCaprio's Golden Globes Speech Made B.C. 'The Revenant' Actor All 'Choked up'

Others were more nuanced:

Leonardo DiCaprio's shout out to First Nations cause for introspection

Some quick to praise, but others skeptical of The Revenant star's Golden Globe speech

Native American Groups Officially Respond To Leonardo DiCaprio’s Call To Action

Representatives of the groups depicted in The Revenant spoke with BuzzFeed News about the actor’s Golden Globes speech calling on listeners to “protect … indigenous lands.”

By Ariane LangeThis week, Mark N. Fox, chair of the Mandan, Hidatsa, and Arikara Nation, wrote to BuzzFeed News: “Mr. DiCaprio’s words and support for our rights and the rights of all Indigenous nations are amazing and courageous. Like a man with true character, he is willing to challenge American Society where many others of influence fear to tread. His efforts both on and off the screen have brought honor to our Arikara, Hidatsa, and Mandan people. We look forward to allying with him in the struggle to promote truth and protect our rights as sovereign and Indigenous people!”But:Assiniboine activist Lauren Chief Elk-Young Bear tweeted Sunday night, “I think that shoutout was him making Native people his mascot,” noting that he did not thank any groups or individuals specifically and instead relied on vague language that rendered all Native peoples a monolith. In a separate series of tweets the next day, she criticized his wording as part and parcel of “white saviorism.”

“The reason the Leo shout out was so remarkable to folks is that Native peoples are invisible,” Keene tweeted. “It shouldn’t be revolutionary to call upon the peoples whose land you occupy, but it is.”
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Indians at Previous Oscar Ceremonies and All About Sacheen Littlefeather.

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