'The Neighborhood:' Racial Profiling 'Still an Everyday Thing' for Blacks

On Monday night, Cedric the Entertainer and Max Greenfield's new racial comedy The Neighborhood on CBS aired its 5th episode. In this installment, the Johnsons went over to the Butlers' for a game night which soon turned into a political platform for social justice warriors.

During one of the games where each person has to answer the question "What's something bad you've done, but never told anyone about?" Gemma Johnson (Beth Behrs) admits to shoplifting when she was in junior high. To the Butlers' surprise, she wasn’t chased out of the store by the police. Of course, according to them, that’s only because she is white and doesn't get racially profiled while shopping.

 

 

Gemma: I'm the shoplifter.
Calvin: Oh, damn. I should've knew it. Malcolm was too obvious, man.
Tina: Damn, Gemma, you're a thief? I can see that.
Dave: You never told me you shoplifted.
Gemma: It was a long time ago.
Dave: Is it weird that I'm turned on by that?
Gemma: I was in junior high.
Dave: Then the answer is yes.
Marty: Wait. So, what'd you steal?
Gemma: A Star Trek backpack.
Dave: Oh, damn it. It's sexy again.
Marty: Wait. You stole a Star Trek backpack? Gemma, live long and plunder.
Gemma: Actually, I was aiming for the Spice Girls, but I panicked. I wanted Sporty, but instead I grabbed Spock.
Hmm. And then what?
Gemma: I ran out.
Tina: Damn! My girl Gemma outrunning the po po.
Gemma: No, no, no. No one chased me.
Butlers: What? What? What?

Gemma: Yeah, I was so on edge, I binged, like, four Cinnabons just to calm down.
Tina: Ooh. Girl, if you was black, you'd still be sitting in jail with type 2 diabetes.
Gemma: Wait. You think I got away with it because I'm white?
Butlers: Yes, definitely. Yeah. Of course.
Calvin: Shoot, I was in the store the other day. Security followed me so long, I thought I did steal something.
Dave: That still happens?
Marty: Are you kidding? I have more followers in a department store than I do on Twitter.
Calvin: Yeah, it's profiling, man. It's still an everyday thing for us.

Despite the Butlers' insistence, Gemma refused to believe she was a part of said “white privilege”--- that is until a later incident when she and Tina Butler (Tichina Arnold) try to return the backpack to set a good example for Gemma’s son. When the clerk won't allow them to return the backpack because it is not the same store Gemma stole it from 20 years ago, Tina tries to step in and resolve things.

 

 

Tina: Okay, let me, uh, handle this. Hi, Meadow. All my friend here needs to do is return that bag, so what is the best way to resolve this situation?
Meadow: I'm sorry. I can't resolve anything for you.
Tina: Well, I hear you say that, but I don't feel like you really tried. (Chuckles)
Meadow: Whoa, there's no need to be aggressive.
Tina: I'm not being aggressive.
Meadow: I don't appreciate your tone.
Tina: My tone? Th-th-there's nothing wrong with my tone. I was just trying to help my friend.
Meadow: Security? I've got a situation with a very angry woman and her blonde friend from the '90s.
Gemma: Oh, my God, she just called you angry. Tina, I don't know if you realize this, but you are being profiled.
Tina: Oh, my God, Gemma. I think you might be right.
Gemma: Well, I am not just gonna stand here and watch you be disrespected.
Meadow: See, now you're upsetting my customer.
Gemma: Oh, you want upsetting? I will show you upsetting.
Tina: Okay. All right, let's go, Angela Davis. You're gonna get me arrested.
Gemma:You may not realize it, but you should be ashamed of yourself. Y-you need to get woke! She's black, and I'm proud!

 

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