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Caleb McLaughlin, AKA Lucas Sinclair on Stranger Things, recently opened up about dealing with racism he’s faced since the show's debut.
The 20-year-old actor gained recognition for playing the role of Lucas since season one.At this year’s The Heroes Comic-Con Belgium, McLaughlin went into detail about the racism he faced from some Stranger Things fans and how it affected him when he was younger.
“My very first Comic-Con, some people didn’t stand in my line because I was Black. Some people told me, ‘Oh I didn’t want to be in your line because you were mean to Eleven [Millie Bobby Brown].” - McLaughlin told the crowd in Belgium
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Sadly, this is nothing new. In fact, just a few weeks ago singer/actress, Halle Bailey, faced backlash from some who said her depiction of Ariel in next year’s Little Mermaid film, doesn’t resemble the original protagonist who is - 100% - a mythical creature.
Let’s not overlook the racism thrown toward actors of color in shows like HBO’s House of Dragons, or Amazon’s Rings of Power. Earlier this year, “Star Wars” released a statement after Moses Ingram acknowledged on social media that fans flooded her DMs calling her the N-word and a “diversity hire.”
"They are happy with a dragon flying. They’re happy with white hair and violet-colored eyes, but a rich Black guy? That’s beyond the pale." - Steve Toussaint of ‘House of the Dragon’ commenting on his casting.
In a world where representation matters more than ever, it saddens me to see such bright, talented actors, accosted for the color of their skin.
But there’s still hope, especially when actors like McLaughlin decide to open up, speak their truth, and use their platforms to bring light to relevant issues so many of us face in our day-to-day lives.