Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Robert Pattinson and "Negroes": what's he got against blacks like me?

Video update:

Getting away from Negros? 
Here we go again. Just two weeks after popular, 3-million-Twitter-user followed John Mayer has a great 16-year old scotch called Lagavulin neat (that's without ice) and gets off an N-word blast and explains how he's not attracted to black women, we have Twilight star Robert Pattinson doing an interview in Details and over more than one beer and opening his mouth to reveal his own prejudice against blacks like this blogger.

Moreover, he's enabled by the author of the interview.

In the March issue of Details Magazine, he has several beers with the interviewer, a woman named Jenny Lumet. At first, they start with coffee. But then they have a succession of beers. Ms. Lumet's so interested in the beer aspect of her meetups she divides her talks into beers: "Beer 1," etc.

At Beer No. 3 Pattinson and Lumet have this exchange:

Jenny Lumet: Rob, did you know that every time you say actor or acting you lower your voice to a whisper?
Robert Pattinson: He's genuinely startled. "I do?"
Jenny Lumet:Yes, so quietly it's like you're saying Negro.
Robert Pattinson: He laughs, lightens up. "What if we were 'acting' like 'Negroes'? Then we'd be fucked—we couldn't hear anything. . . ."

What the does it mean: "What if we were 'acting' like 'Negroes'? Then we'd be fucked—we couldn't hear anything. . . ." The comment leaves more to question. When Robert Pattinson says "what if we were acting like Negroes" what's he talking about? Ms. Lumet also apparently has her own issues with blacks like me, because she started him on this racist path.

Does Robert Pattinson have any black friends? What do they think about this? And if Robert Pattinson doesn't have black, er, Negro friends, perhaps that's the problem. It certainly seems to be the problem for Jenny Lumet.

To be racist is to put someone else down because of the color of their skin. That's what both Jenny Lumet and Robert Pattinson did. What's Robert Pattinson got against blacks like me? Does that mean he'd snub me for an interview? And why would Details hire a person like Jenny Lumet who's obviously got some of her own issues with blacks like me?

And what's this sudden small rash of racist comments by young white male pop culture stars all about anyway? You may say it's just two guys, but it's two guy too many. John Mayer and Robert Pattinson both have some issues with, er, Negroes, they need to work out and in such a way that both can have scotch or beer and not run off at the mouth.

What's happening - John Mayer and Robert Pattinson's racist blasts and Vanity Fair's "all white" Hollywood actress cover - is disturbing. Someone please remind these icons that racism is a horrible mental illness; help for them is needed.

Meanwhile, Details should not fire Jenny Lumet; just make her inteview blacks like me about this issue. That will be enough.


  1. If you're going to post, leave your name. Read the rules.

  2. I read the article and I do not think it was racist, but you know something I knew a person of color was going to jump on this and call it that. You are so wrong. You are the racist person!

    My Name

  3. I think Mr. Pattinson was alluding to the fact that if he whispers when saying "acting" as if he were saying an offensive word like "negro" (as suggested by Ms. Lumet) then if he were to try "acting" like a "negro" then he'd be nearly inaudible. While his statement hardly makes sense, you may concur print media is horrible at conveying nuance and often comments are taken completely out of context. What Mr. Pattinson said was not nearly in as poor taste as John Mayer's reprehensible statements in Playboy, just easily misconstrued.

  4. Anonymous12:29 PM

    Ms. Lumet is half African American herself. She is the one that brought the offending name up and Rob answered.

    Get that stick out sweetie, noone was being racist here...

  5. Here's the link to Jenny Lumet's mother's career where she served in National Scholarship Service and Fund for Negro Students as a student counselor between the years 1961-62. I wonder if she realized she was being racist by simply being black.

    You need to do your research before calling people racist.

    It's easy to taint people. Shame on you!

  6. OfficiallyLynne1:04 PM

    I totally agree with the two last comments and I'm a black Australia. Robert does not really consider himself an "actor", because he "fell into acting", so he says the word in a way that people won't think is big-headed. A lot of people use the word "black" or " negro" in the same way because they are unsure what is the correct term and they don't want to offend anyone. Add that to what "Wolfhowl" said above (Robert is renowned for this), than you can see that this has been taken completely out of context. Same as the "vagina allergy" business. Did nobody get that - vagina - allergy - swelling
    . For Gods people sake think about it.


  7. Our reply to your post which we doubt you'll approve as a comment because you'll find it racist or threatening or something:

  8. Holly LeCraw1:58 PM

    Hello. Hello? Do you do any research before accusing people of hatefulness like racism? Jenny Lumet is African-American. Her mother is African-American. Her grandmother was Lena Horne and certainly knew all about racism in Hollywood.

    What Mr. Pattinson did was some not-very-adept wordplay. Read the article. Lumet's point was that Pattinson is self-conscious about talking about himself as an actor. He says the word "acting" like it's something to be ashamed of, and Lumet links this to the way people now say the (formerly correct) word "Negro." Then he puts them together in a sentence.

    It is too bad you found this offensive. But read the article again. And yes, this is worlds, universes, away from Mayer's sleazebag comments.

  9. Before you post this type of hate...you should do more research.
    Rob did not bring up the word, Jenny L did, and she happens to be bi-racial.
    The statement was not meant to be racist, but people like you are trying to turn it into a racist commnet.
    You should be ashamed....

  10. Lou Lawson2:17 PM

    Wow. I think it's you who has the issue. Maybe you should at least do some research first. Then you would know Jenny Lumet is herself of African American decent, being her grandmother is Lena Horne.

    By blowing comments like this out of proportion, you just fan the flame of hatred. Is that your intent?

  11. Janice2:18 PM

    You might want to check your facts before you post inflamatory nonsense Mr. Abraham. For example you might want to take note that the interviewer, Jenny Lumet, is black "like you" as is her mother, Gail Lumet Buckley, and her grandmother, Lena Horne.

  12. Hi. Me again sir. I just posted on your other column about Robert Pattinson regarding his Details interview.

    About this 'negro' remark. Mr. Pattinson did not bring this up. Miss Lumet did. A biracial woman by the way. Her mother worked for some Scholarship for Negroes Fund back in the 60's and her grandmother is Leana Horne. Robert Pattinson is not a racist or a homosexual. Got no problem if he were gay (he can laugh that off), but to accuse him of racism and besmirch his good name when you have clearly missed the intent of his remarks, well sir...YOU OWN HIM AN APOLOGY! Are you a big enough person to admit your error and give him one?

    Perhaps you should have contacted Ms. Lumet and gotten her take on all of this, before you posted your 'knee jerk' reaction on the internet and in essence sending misinformation around the world. Words are powerful sir. Be careful what you say. Thank you.

    My name is Bobbie Brant

    (I forgot to include my name in my previous post where I was explaining the joke Mr. Pattinson was referring to about the 'allergic to vagina' comment)

  13. Rachel3:36 PM

    I think Roberts comments were not meant to in anyway be racist or insensitive to anyone, just the usual case of print media not working to convey the spoken word..........however John Mayer deserves any backlash he gets.

  14. rpattzgirl - You should read the blog post; it's evident you did not. I did point at Jenny. Moreover, you should ask the question WHY even use the term Negro, or talk about blacks? It's really disturbing that you drink Robert's Kool Aide to the point that you defend everything he says or does, even that which is obviously racist.

  15. I did read the post, but you are still alluding to the fact that Rob is a racist...Point in fact "what does Robert have against blacks like me".

    The comment was not made by a racist. Rob is not a racist, but you obviously want to take the words and twist them around to make a point..and that point is to fuel the fire and create hate and ignorance.

  16. He made the statement. He should not have done so. He was wrong. .

  17. So because he made a statement, in response to a statement made by Jenny L, he hates blacks?

    I don't see how you're connecting the dots on this one.

    You are going to believe what you're going to believe, and I will do the same...

    He's a lovely young man, with no hate in his blood or in his soul...to bad you can not say the same.

  18. Janice7:18 PM

    I find it curious that Mr. Abraham only responds to the comments made by one person who identifies themselves as a fan of Robert Pattinson rather than addressing the multiple comments from many of us with regard to his irresponsiblilty in posting such an inflamatory blog with no real foundation or research.

    Shame on you Mr. Abraham. You would seem to be the real racist here trying to incite others.

  19. alexi8:32 PM

    Mr. Abraham, on your question whether Mr. Pattinson has any black friends, the answer is YES. He has a childhood friend named Marquita Oliver (http://www.spunk-ransom.com/2009/02/08/rob-spotted-in-london-saturday-night/) whom he grew up with in London together with other childhood friends. However, unlike you, they are not conscious of the color of their skin. I think, however, that they should start being conscious of racists like you.

  20. The example above is meaningless. "Not paying attention to skin color" is a claim that's a joke. If Pattinson didn't pay attention to skin color why would he say "Negroes"? Wild.

  21. Anonymous8:50 PM

    My Brother,
    I'm sorry, but you're off on this one. I read the article and while I initially raised an eyebrow at the exchange in question, I re-read and realized the context. It was a simple play on words. It would have been one thing if Mr. Pattinson had initiated the use of the word; that *might* have been a peek into his mindset. But the interviewer -- a person of color herself as it's been pointed out numerous times now (and yes I realize that doesn't automatically exempt one from ignorance about racial matters) -- introduced the term specifically to make a point. It's an outdated term, (which was the *POINT*; alluding to those who would use such a "socially sensitive" word in a whisper), as if to suggest Mr. Pattinson was using the word "actor" in the same way; AS IF IT IS A SOCIALLY UNACCEPTABLE WORD, ONLY TO BE WHISPERED. His response played on that theme. "If we were *acting* (1st "bad" word) like *Negroes* (2nd "bad" word), we'd be *screwed* because you couldn't hear us (given all the words we'd be whispering)." NOT, if we were behaving like "those people", etc., or in any other kind of usage where I would have issued a resounding, "WTF?"

    Please, there is so much racism in the world readily available to acknowledge and shed light on, that there is no need to create an incident where none really existed. Rethink this my brother. Respectfully, a proud black woman who would have dropped one Robert Pattinson from her appreciation in a millisecond without looking back, had he actually done what you've suggested he did.

  22. I agree to disagree. I find his and Jenny's desire to even think in that way really disturbing.

    I've seen nothing here to convince me otherwise. I find the willingness of fans to invent reasons for Rob to be really terrible. The man was wrong; Jenny was wrong. I don't think even bring up folks like me was necessary and my fear is that some younger blacks seem to rubber stamp the second-class citizen role.

  23. Anonymous9:30 PM

    Fair enough, we can disagree (and at 42 years of age, it's been a while since I could be accused of youthful rubber-stamping, so that suggestion is wasted on me ;-). But consider this; if there was any wrong here, it was Ms. Lumet's in offering up the word and clearing the way for it in the first place. If you and I are in a conversation, and I used some offensive term about women, "bitch" for example, as if to suggest to you, "I'm giving this word the greenlight for this conversation," and you repeat it, while one could argue you should have the wherewithal to say woah, I'm not going there, don't I as the woman have the responsibility to let you know what's off limits? I would never offer up the "N" word in a discussion with a white acquaintance -- I doubt you would either -- and I certainly would hold myself responsible if they repeated it, following my lead. She essentially requested he follow her lead, and his being less than savvy enough to avoid it, nonetheless does not reveal him as any sort of racist or invite the kind of accusations you directed toward him. Whether you'd prefer the word had never been used or not, to suggest Pattinson "has something against blacks like me", is entirely a stretch, if not outright weak in reasoning. I think you can do better than that. We old folk sometimes need to be contrite and acknowledge when we may have erred. It happens.

  24. alexi9:30 PM

    Also, Mr. Abraham, I searched your blog whether you wrote anything as strongly-worded about John Meyer's interview in Playboy as you did with Mr. Pattinson and was shocked to find out that your reaction to Meyer was generally lukewarm, detached, and not even close to how you're reacting to Pattinson's Details interview. You did however mention Meyer in this article to equate his interview with Mr. Pattinson's, which makes me wonder whether this article is just to help Mr. Meyer get back into the mainstream as Meyer is clearly a showbiz pariah right now. I think by equating Meyer to Pattinson who was not at all racist in his Details interview, you're hoping to confuse the public, thus enabling Meyer to materialise the "hood pass" he was talking about in his interview with Playboy. Meyer boasted of friends in the black community whom he clearly does not respect but did not mind using to further his musical career. C'mon Mr. Abraham, tell us how you really think and feel about Meyer when he trivialized the plight of black people by saying that it's equal to his own, together with his blatant disrespect of black women and women in general.

  25. I disagree here regarding John Mayer and what I wrote. I used more text on that issue. Regardless of what comment is written, my explanation stands.

  26. Shonie5:19 PM

    im so over those comments about Nigga this Negro that its annoying. its been around for hundreds of years what makes you think its going anywhere? it should, its unfortunate that its not. im black and as much we say those white people or them white girls so it goes both ways its not being immune to this its just as i said goes both ways if its not one race its the other. racism is not acceptable i read the interview i didnt get what he was saying but i dont think he really knew what he was talking about either but i know he wasnt trying to be racist. in his defense the reporter shouldnt of used the word and opened that door for something that this should happen. yeah he should watch what he says anyway but she opened that door and i dont think he was coming from anywhere malicious. the interviewer is black and if she thought he was out of line im sure she would of corrected him, she would have been offended because she what of felt that shes not paid to be insulted if that was the case. i think some people of color are so ready to just jump on anything that has some one who is not of the same race has said about them and call it racism.

    - Shonie