Liam Neeson - What was he thinking ?

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Just as per the title really ?
Unless you have been away from mainstream media you will likely have seen his interview
Maybe he was fibbing to get some publicity for his new movie
Maybe he thought it was macho to shout it out and to show he was repenting.
Personally I think he's been a complete knob.
And I think his career is damaged badly
 
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I'm a bit on the fence about this.

The worrying people are the ones that would never admit this. He was very racist 40 years ago. But times were different back then. My nan was racist but we kind of ignores it (she died a long time ago) although she was confused about my Latino boyfriend and kept saying how tanned he looked lol. He's admitting he was totally unacceptable and has changed.

I don't know if he was an idiot to say it or if it's a ploy for his movie. I wouldn't watch it either way as it's the same movie over and over again. But everyone knows he has a movie out this weekend.
 
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I'm also on the fence.
It's made me lose quite a bit of respect for him, but in a weird way it's good (right word?) That he's came out with it and knows how unacceptable it was.
Although, I still don't think he thinks he said anything wrong, the way he's tried to justify it by saying if they were white, Filipino, etc he'd have been the same way...
He might have been.
But he wouldn't feel the need to say "looking for a white bastard to kill".
There's just no need for race to come in to it.
 
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I think its shocking to admit. Fair enough maybe he's not racist now, but to essentially lump all black people in with one another like 'well my friend was raped by a black man so I'm just gonna go out and kill a black man' is insane.

It reminds me of Mark Wahlberg a bit (except he did physically harm people). He was super racist as a teen/young adult and I think assaulted a Vietnamese man. Then a few years ago he tried to have his crimes essentially wiped clean and was called out over it. (I think his plea was rejected anyway) Now he tries to really play up the 'family man' image. Now I'm not saying people don't change, but his apology never came across as genuine, it was more 'well I've forgiven myself' and I don't think he's done anything like donate to a charity that helps minorities.
 
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There is an interview John Barnes did on This Morning, and actually he made some good points about the situation. I have been in two minds about the whole thing. But I am inclined to lean towards saying yes Liam was wrong to seek revenge but contextually he knew the alleged rapist was a black guy which is who he held anger towards. But the revenge made him want to do terrible things and his attitude was wrong. But he knows that, that’s what he is saying and actually we should appreciate, not celebrate, that Liam has seen where he was a bad person and become a better person.

John Barnes explains quite well, I’ll link at the end, and I agree with him broadly speaking - especially the comment he made about Winston Churchill being a white supremacist and the hypocrisy of this whole thing.
 
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I know he wasn't thinking but what even compelled him to even share that story?! It was totally unnecessary. And what he described of wanting to a black person to antagonize him so he can have an excuse to react, in the aftermath of hearing a close friend got raped supposedly by a black person is not the definition of revenge. Also, his line of thinking... My friend got raped, oh how terrible. So what race was this person? :rolleyes:

As long as he is learning from this mistake and isn't going out of his way to prevent POC from getting roles then he's ehh to me. Liam Neeson is in a place of extreme privilege so it's really up to him to do better and to not fall back on excuses. The whole everyone does racial profiling excuse was very weak. What you think and the actions you carry out are two different things. Also, playing the oppression Olympics card with his suffering as an Irish man versus what black people have gone through. It's not really comparable. I'm not dismissing the hardships he's gone through but the history black people have had to endure and still suffer today as a result is truly awful.

In addition, I think with the political climate in the UK and all around the world really (esp. in the States w/ that orange moron), topics of race and racism is very fraught and for a lot of people it can be triggering. At the end of the day, I think Liam shouldn't have said anything and will hopefully find ways to reach out and help his fellow actors who are also of color and continue to evolve in his way of thinking. Truly a verbal diarrhea moment for him.
 
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The fact that he a) felt the need to tell this story at all, and, more importantly b) further felt the need to bring the person’s race into it indicates to me that he still harbors racist feelings and thoughts and he let the façade slip for a minute in some weird ass break with reality when he thought it would be a good idea to say something like that
 
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I’m mixed race and I 100% agree with John Barnes. This is white people being triggered into being horrified (did you see Holly Willoughby’s face ?) and POC being triggered into not contextualising what was actually said.

Where you get an over-compensating reaction and an angry reaction whipped up by selective reporting for headlines, the original message is lost. It was clumsy of Liam neeson but if people are not allowed to talk about their prejudice and how they fixed their prejudice in fear of a backlash we are doing ourselves a massive disservice. It’s like the terms xenophobe and racist and bigot are thrown around so much now they lose all impact* and that hinders social progression.

ETA:
*i love John Barnes example of “racial bias” rather than “racist” because it’s true.

If we want racism to stop we’ve got to allow dialogue to flow.
 
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I’m mixed race and I 100% agree with John Barnes. This is white people being triggered into being horrified (did you see Holly Willoughby’s face ?) and POC being triggered into not contextualising what was actually said.

Where you get an over-compensating reaction and an angry reaction whipped up by selective reporting for headlines, the original message is lost. It was clumsy of Liam neeson but if people are not allowed to talk about their prejudice and how they fixed their prejudice in fear of a backlash we are doing ourselves a massive disservice. It’s like the terms xenophobe and racist and bigot are thrown around so much now they lose all impact* and that hinders social progression.

ETA:
*i love John Barnes example of “racial bias” rather than “racist” because it’s true.

If we want racism to stop we’ve got to allow dialogue to flow.
A discussion on prejudice is always welcome but unless Liam Neeson is taking active steps to better the disadvantages that POC are dealt with, it doesn't really amount to much just for him to say well that wrong of me to think that way. It's great he acknowledged his wrongdoing and it's a start. However, words are just words until something is actually done so that POC aren't viewed as a threat or deemed the 'others'. As an established white actor he has immense privilege so it'll be interesting to see what he does from here on out--if he chooses to do so.

However, was it a necessary story to share? Not really. It only made for a sensationalized headline for the tabloids and created a fervor for the masses. If he had brought up that story and then explained how he has changed his ways since then i.e. advocating for POC actors, working w/ more POC directors, etc, etc, then it might have been a different story.

There were a few things that raised some red flags w/ me like his immediate line of thinking after his friend was raped (focusing on the race of the person moreso than the awfulness that happened to the friend) but I also do take into account his age and the social/political landscape he grew up in which vastly differs from someone of my age. I'm not excusing his behavior but I'm also not surprised that a 60+ y/o white man thought that way, if that makes any sense?
 
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A discussion on prejudice is always welcome but unless Liam Neeson is taking active steps to better the disadvantages that POC are dealt with, it doesn't really amount to much just for him to say well that wrong of me to think that way. It's great he acknowledged his wrongdoing and it's a start. However, words are just words until something is actually done so that POC aren't viewed as a threat or deemed the 'others'. As an established white actor he has immense privilege so it'll be interesting to see what he does from here on out--if he chooses to do so.

However, was it a necessary story to share? Not really. It only made for a sensationalized headline for the tabloids and created a fervor for the masses. If he had brought up that story and then explained how he has changed his ways since then i.e. advocating for POC actors, working w/ more POC directors, etc, etc, then it might have been a different story.

There were a few things that raised some red flags w/ me like his immediate line of thinking after his friend was raped (focusing on the race of the person moreso than the awfulness that happened to the friend) but I also do take into account his age and the social/political landscape he grew up in which vastly differs from someone of my age. I'm not excusing his behavior but I'm also not surprised that a 60+ y/o white man thought that way, if that makes any sense?
Yes, I understand what you’re saying and do agree.

I’m not sure which other posters on here are POC, but personally speaking I would feel patronised if Liam Neeson suddenly started pushing POC actors and others in his industry. He did something gross, he recognised it and he changed. I don’t need some old white guy making a big show that being a different colour is acceptable like it’s some pet project ?

Honestly though who doesn’t categorise people by colour? I call white people white people all the time. And I don’t mind people calling be black as long as it’s descriptive and not in a derogatory way ?
 
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Yes, I understand what you’re saying and do agree.

I’m not sure which other posters on here are POC, but personally speaking I would feel patronised if Liam Neeson suddenly started pushing POC actors and others in his industry. He did something gross, he recognised it and he changed. I don’t need some old white guy making a big show that being a different colour is acceptable like it’s some pet project ?

Honestly though who doesn’t categorise people by colour? I call white people white people all the time. And I don’t mind people calling be black as long as it’s descriptive and not in a derogatory way ?
I'm also a person of color if that gives you some context.

This is my personal opinion but I don't think it's patronizing if white people started promoting works by directors who are not white or helped give a wider platform to up and coming actors who are also POC. If anything it would lessen the stigma that POC considered risky to helm a major studio film or to headline it. It would help normalize and reinforce the idea that POC can be just as successful as their fellow white actors. The film industry is essentially dominated by old white men. It's largely their rules and their viewpoint. I don't think sitting back and waiting for change to happen is the answer either; not when rich old white men still control the narrative and the industry. I'm not saying POC actors or those in the industry need a handout or should be seen as a pet project. But considering the disadvantage where POC actors are still a minority and rarely play lead roles; it would be a step in the right direction to bring some light and help level the playing field.

My point was if Liam Neeson wanted to say he's not a racist and felt the need to share that story, then it would have been better if he had something substantial to follow up with how he has changed or does not subscribe to that line of thinking anymore. Otherwise, it's a story that he took upon himself and felt the need to share when it wasn't even his story to tell in the first place. His friend was raped (not him) but instead he warped it into how he felt about that situation and then making it a racial issue by fixating on the fact the rapist was black. Then making it even worse by following it up with this brief notion of equating all black men as rapists due to the action of that one lone man and wanting to seek revenge. Or if race was a tricky slope for him to navigate then maybe doing something in regards to sexual harassment or women who have endured sexual assault/violence. That's what I meant. That this story he shared had no point unless he had done something to follow up with it. Not that he needed to be a white knight for POC but that he did something instead of just saying how he used to think and then doing nothing that shows he's changed for the better or used his time wisely. He's a wealthy, privileged white man so he can do better and should know better.
 
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I'm also a person of color if that gives you some context.

This is my personal opinion but I don't think it's patronizing if white people started promoting works by directors who are not white or helped give a wider platform to up and coming actors who are also POC. If anything it would lessen the stigma that POC considered risky to helm a major studio film or to headline it. It would help normalize and reinforce the idea that POC can be just as successful as their fellow white actors. The film industry is essentially dominated by old white men. It's largely their rules and their viewpoint. I don't think sitting back and waiting for change to happen is the answer either; not when rich old white men still control the narrative and the industry. I'm not saying POC actors or those in the industry need a handout or should be seen as a pet project. But considering the disadvantage where POC actors are still a minority and rarely play lead roles; it would be a step in the right direction to bring some light and help level the playing field.

My point was if Liam Neeson wanted to say he's not a racist and felt the need to share that story, then it would have been better if he had something substantial to follow up with how he has changed or does not subscribe to that line of thinking anymore. Otherwise, it's a story that he took upon himself and felt the need to share when it wasn't even his story to tell in the first place. His friend was raped (not him) but instead he warped it into how he felt about that situation and then making it a racial issue by fixating on the fact the rapist was black. Then making it even worse by following it up with this brief notion of equating all black men as rapists due to the action of that one lone man and wanting to seek revenge. Or if race was a tricky slope for him to navigate then maybe doing something in regards to sexual harassment or women who have endured sexual assault/violence. That's what I meant. That this story he shared had no point unless he had done something to follow up with it. Not that he needed to be a white knight for POC but that he did something instead of just saying how he used to think and then doing nothing that shows he's changed for the better or used his time wisely. He's a wealthy, privileged white man so he can do better and should know better.
I don’t know if it’s maybe a generational thing - I’m in my 30s and I see so much more positive POC representation now than when I was a kid, especially a kid growing up the only non white in my primary school and one of only a handful on non whites at my secondary school. I kind of understand what he was saying, albeit very clumsy, because I imagine in war torn 70s Ireland the black population would have been very small and the country had a mindset of grouping people by common factors as to whether they were the enemy (or outsider), eg catholic/Protestant/family/race. So when his friend was raped by a black person, it became owned by the black population in Ireland in neeson’s head. I think a social scientist could probably explain it better than I’m doing ? but context of the time and what was going on in the world matters to his story, which is lost and forgotten when telling it today.
 
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I'm also a person of color if that gives you some context.

This is my personal opinion but I don't think it's patronizing if white people started promoting works by directors who are not white or helped give a wider platform to up and coming actors who are also POC. If anything it would lessen the stigma that POC considered risky to helm a major studio film or to headline it. It would help normalize and reinforce the idea that POC can be just as successful as their fellow white actors. The film industry is essentially dominated by old white men. It's largely their rules and their viewpoint. I don't think sitting back and waiting for change to happen is the answer either; not when rich old white men still control the narrative and the industry. I'm not saying POC actors or those in the industry need a handout or should be seen as a pet project. But considering the disadvantage where POC actors are still a minority and rarely play lead roles; it would be a step in the right direction to bring some light and help level the playing field.

My point was if Liam Neeson wanted to say he's not a racist and felt the need to share that story, then it would have been better if he had something substantial to follow up with how he has changed or does not subscribe to that line of thinking anymore. Otherwise, it's a story that he took upon himself and felt the need to share when it wasn't even his story to tell in the first place. His friend was raped (not him) but instead he warped it into how he felt about that situation and then making it a racial issue by fixating on the fact the rapist was black. Then making it even worse by following it up with this brief notion of equating all black men as rapists due to the action of that one lone man and wanting to seek revenge. Or if race was a tricky slope for him to navigate then maybe doing something in regards to sexual harassment or women who have endured sexual assault/violence. That's what I meant. That this story he shared had no point unless he had done something to follow up with it. Not that he needed to be a white knight for POC but that he did something instead of just saying how he used to think and then doing nothing that shows he's changed for the better or used his time wisely. He's a wealthy, privileged white man so he can do better and should know better.
Sorry for double posting but just to come back to an earlier point you made, but I believe the reason you don’t have as much POC representation is as much because of capitalism as racism.

In 2011, 20% of the UK was classed as non-white, in 2001 it was only 13%. In the 1991 census, it was just 6%. Projections for 2021 put the figure at over 30%.

I don’t think it’s any coincidence that as the non white population has grown, so has representation because it’s following the money. In fact, I would be shocked if there wasn’t a mainstream tv programme or ad today that didn’t have POC on it. I think the movie industry is behind, but that will change. Hollywood has had wave after wave of blows and I think people are culturally moving away from blockbusters and A listers and more towards self and indie filmmakers and niche stars. Just my opinion tho.
 
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Anyone hear the story about when Liam was doing a film shoot somewhere and he had to walk out of the sea naked (apparently he is quite well endowed) and as he walked out alot of the film crew stared in disbelief!! Liam looked down and said " Whats the matter? Doesn't yours shrink when its been in cold water "
 
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Did you see that little clip of Andi Peters that was doing the rounds after Liam Neeson said something about going around killing black blokes?



Hilarious.
 
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