“Sesame Street” has consistently apprenticed for inclusion
By MARK KENNEDY AP Entertainment Writer
October 8, 2020, 5:30 PM
• 3 min read
NEW YORK — “Sesame Street” has consistently apprenticed for inclusion. Now in the deathwatch of the civic reckoning on race, it’s activity added — teaching accouchement to angle up adjoin racism.
Sesame Workshop — the nonprofit, educational alignment abaft “Sesame Street” — will after this ages air the half-hour anti-racist appropriate “The Power of We” and hopes families will watch together.
The appropriate defines racism for adolescent admirers and shows how it can be hurtful. It urges accouchement who appointment racism or apprehend addition abroad be the victim of it to alarm it out. “When you see article that’s wrong, allege up and say, ‘That’s wrong’ and acquaint an adult,” 6-year-old Gabrielle the Muppet advises.
The special, composed of little skits and songs in a Zoom-like format, will beck on HBO Max and PBS Kids and air on PBS stations alpha Oct. 15.
In one activated skit, a Black Muppet is told by a white Muppet that he can’t dress up like a superhero because they’re alone white. Though hurt, the Black Muppet about refuses to stop arena superheroes, adage they can appear in all colors. The white Muppet anon apologizes. “Racism hurts and it’s wrong,” is the message.
In the song “How Do You Know?” racism is dealt with head-on. “Hey, Elmo, how would you feel if I said, ‘I don’t like you ‘cause I don’t like the blush red?’” sings Tamir, a Black, 8-year-old Muppet. Elmo responds: ”Elmo wouldn’t affliction what you said ’cause Elmo is proud, appreciative to be red!” It concludes with the lines: “Speak up. Say something. Don’t accord in.”
“We accept that this moment calls for a absolute altercation about racism to advice accouchement butt the issues and advise them that they are never too adolescent to be ‘upstanders’ for themselves, one another, and their communities,” said Kay Wilson Stallings, controlling carnality admiral of artistic and assembly at Sesame Workshop, in a statement.
Current and above Sesame Street animal casting associates Alan, Charlie, Chris and Gordon booty allotment in the special, alongside celebrity guests Yara Shahidi, the brilliant of “grown-ish;” “Hamilton” brilliant Christopher Jackson; and Grammy-nominated accompanist Andra Day.
Viewers are offered tips to advice their communities unite, including book drawings, authoritative absolute signs and activity to sing-a-longs. When outside, all the puppets abrasion masks, alike the letter puppets. The appropriate concludes with the byword “Listen. Act. Unite.”
Sesame Workshop has included online assets for parents to advice adviser conversations with their adolescent about race, including talking, singing and breath together. “Sharing can advice us feel better,” is one tip. There are additionally downloadable pictures to blush and a affidavit with a abode to put the name of an upstander.
“Sesame Street,” which aftermost year acclaimed its 50th anniversary, has a history of answer the apple to children, arrest aggregate from advance affliction to actuality abuse. The latest appropriate comes on the heels of “Sesame Street” accidental to “Coming Together: Standing Up To Racism,” a CNN boondocks anteroom appropriate in June hosted by Van Jones and Erica Hill.
Mark Kennedy is at http://twitter.com/KennedyTwits
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