Breaking Down Armie Hammer’s White Privilege…

Okay, so normally I try not to get political on the blog, therefore, a lot of my dribble treads lightly. I refuse to speak on behalf of Branded’s higher-ups, but it’s my opinion that sites like this exist as a source of relief from the politically divisive landscape of contemporary “journalism.” That said, we NEED to talk about this dude Armie Hammer right now…

For those unfamiliar, Armie Hammer is an American actor most known for his voice acting role from Cars 3 (Pixar’s crowning cinematic achievement), as well as The Social Network, which is a 2010 movie that follows the life and times of Rus Yusopov as he became the co-founder of Vine—the since deceased short-form video hosting service.

More importantly though, Hammer is a straight White male, and recently, he sat down with the British online newspaper, The Independent, to discuss his wretched condition. The piece is an absolute MUST READ and, throughout the interview, Hammer manages to cultivate opinions that range from brilliant to ambiguous to downright brilliant, forcing me to evaluate in a more intricate fashion.

Below I will list a number of Hammer quotes and break them down for easier consumption…

“How do straight white men,” he begins, “react to other straight white men who are no longer acting how they believe straight white men should act?”

Out of the gate, the first problematic thing I noticed is that Hammer is actively acknowledging his ethnicity, which is downright deplorable to those of us who don’t acknowledge color. Simply put, I self identify as someone who doesn’t self identify as someone who sees, nor assumes, color. In my opinion, until Hammer can endorse the discoloration/translucence of our society, he should just shut up and check his privilege at whatever that hinged barrier at the entrance of the room self identifies as.

“If you see a straight white man not acting like that, not assuming his privilege, in a way, it’s very threatening to your straight white maleness… But at the end of the day, what is straight white maleness if not threatening to everyone else who is not a straight white man? If you stop assuming your privilege, the only people you harm are the people who are actively taking advantage of it.”

For those who are confused by this contention, you’re not alone. The world is chock full of bigoted pieces of shit so just consider yourself part of the overwhelming majority. When it comes down to it, all Armie is saying here is that assuming your White privilege is wrong; however, not assuming it is only harmful to those who are assuming it, which I think is good, but I’m not entirely sure. Translation: fuck you…

“Yeah, I mean there’s things all the time that I catch myself doing. Case in point, sitting here with my feet on the table,” he says, suddenly offended by himself. “I mean like, I’m just being comfortable and relaxed, but like … There are things all the time that I catch myself doing and I think, ‘Wait a second, is this white privilege? Yeah, I think it is. Look at what I’m doing. Yeesh’.” His size 15 feet stay on the table.

“Yeesh” is right. And although Armie’s woke-ometer is on high alert, there’s no excuse for his actions. As a sexually ambiguous, nonbinary discolored entity, I would love to kick my feet up on a table every once in awhile, but therein lies the problem: We can ignore it all we want but there are swaths of this population who meander through life without the privilege of legs, feet, or even access to tables. Not to mention, Armie self identifies his feet as “size 15,” and you know what they say about that—the bigger the size of the foot, the more entitled that individual is to the amount of leather they need in order to fulfill their footwear necessities.

“That being said,” he adds, “the conversation is different now. People are asking, should straight actors take LGBTQA roles? I don’t know. I’m certainly not the authority on that. But we are a much more sensitive and evolved world now than … I mean look, people used to don black face in movies and that was acceptable, and now we say, ‘no, you can’t f**king do that’. And I think that’s right, I completely agree with that, but I don’t know. I guess the answer is – I don’t know.” he concludes, looking a little dismayed.

I don’t know either, dude. There’s a significant part of me that thinks donning black face is wrong, but as Armie says, “I’m not the authority on that.”

“It’s like Schrodinger’s white privilege,” says Elizabeth Chambers’s husband, removing his feet from the table. “Just identifying it makes it something.” 

First off, I want to commend Armie for finally taking his bigoted feet off the God damn table; however, the article mentions he followed that up by placing his feet on the floor, which comes off to me as equally bigoted. I mean, by putting his feet on the floor, Armie is essentially assuming he has the privilege to do so, which is harmful to those who don’t assume their privilege to do so—the same people that that are harmful to those who do assume they have the privilege to do so.

Secondly, and more importantly, Armie indicates that identifying White privilege makes it something, which is interesting because that’s literally the foundation of the entire interview.

So to recap: Armie believes that identifying White privilege makes it something, which propels the concept into existence. By propelling the concept into existence, he is essentially assuming his privilege to do so, which is harmful to those who do not have that privilege, but also harmful to those who do have that privilege and don’t actively assume it because they allow others who do have that privilege to assume it to do so, thereby identifying it as something, thereby assuming that privilege.

I hope you guys learned something today…

– Joey Boats (@joey_boats)

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