Letter to the editor

To the editor:

I do not wish in anyway to take anything form the talented and hardworking individuals that were featured in the Women in Showbiz special (Daily Variety, Nov. 16) However, I feel that there was something lacking from the list. Diversity.

I don’t want to make this a PC/non-PC issue. I just think that in this day and age people of color would have advanced a little bit further than this. And what does it say to the young women of color? “Sorry, no room for you at he top.”

I honestly don’t think that Variety was intentionally being exclusionary. Sad to say, I think it’s just another case of systematic discrimination. But seriously, didn’t anyone there take a look at the issue and say, “Hey, does anybody else think that these women all look the same?”

Maybe people feel that we’ve reached a point in our societal development where color or national origin does not matter – that we look past the face and focus on the accomplishments and potential. But again, what does that say? Does it say that people of color have not accomplished anything? Is it purely statistical? That is to say of the hundreds of professional women only 5.2% are of color? That’s sad if true.

Of the 38 women highlighted in the special section, only one is Asian American. There are no noticeable women of Hispanic descent. There are neither African – American nor Native- Americans represented. There was one individual that may be of Middle Eastern descent. So let’s say two total. Two out of 38 is pretty sad.

Minority groups shouldn’t be relegated to special “Diversity” issue but should take their rightful place along side their colleagues. And if there aren’t any women of color out there in high power positions … well then… what does that say about our industry?

The world is changing and the entertainment industry has always lead the way in social change and reflecting that social change. Daily Variety, as a leading voice of this industry, should be more aware of the commentary it makes. The commentary in this case was insulting and sad at best.

James E. Herr

Los Angeles

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