Out bisexual actress Amber Heard is under fire for a racist tweet regarding an ICE checkpoint near her house in Hollywood. Around midnight on Tuesday, the Magic Mike XXL actress tweeted, “Just heard there’s an ICE checkpoint in [H]ollywood, a few blocks from where I live. Everyone better give their housekeepers, nannies and landscapers a ride home tonight.” Yikes.
The backlash was almost immediate, leading Heard to delete the incendiary tweet and write something less, well, outright racist. She wrote, “Checkpoints on your home streets…. Is this the ‘great’ America we’re aiming for? Raids, fences and police-state like checkpoints don’t feel like the ‘land of the free’ our immigrant ancestors built.”
Checkpoints on your home streets…. Is this the “great” America we’re aiming for? Raids, fences and police-state like checkpoints don’t feel like the ‘land of the free’ our immigrant ancestors built.
— Amber Heard (@realamberheard) July 3, 2018
Although her original tweet was inarguably brimming with harmful racial stereotypes, I think she meant well, in a skewed white-lady-using-her-privilege-to-protect-POC kind of way. The 32-year old actress is an outspoken activist — last week, along with a group of other celebrities, Heard traveled to the border to protest outside the Tornillo detention center in Texas. So while her heart might have been in the right place in asking white people to use their privilege for good, it’s important that people called her out on using offensive language to do so.
And call her out they did—one user replied to the actress’s original tweet, writing, “I can see where you were going but somewhere along the way you took a wrong turn. Delete this sis.”
Tuesday morning, Heard addressed the Twitter mishap again, writing, “With this human rights crisis being so politicized, it is hard to make a simple statement w/out it being used to distract from the real issues. It’s hard for everyone to not be negatively affected by this subject n some way.”
It’s important that privileged women like Amber Heard continue using their platform to speak out on important issues—but let’s cut the White Lady Nonsense and start listening to POC more.
Image via Getty