In late January, Netflix released an original movie called “You People,” which stars Jonah Hill and Lauren London, who play Ezra and Amira, people from two very different backgrounds who eventually fall in love and are on the road to marriage. Upon traveling on that road, the couple hits a bump, and that bump takes the form of their parents. Like them, their parents are very different. Ezra’s mother is a white woman, who is Jewish (played by Julia Louis-Dreyfus), and Amira’s father is a black man very in touch with his African roots (played by Eddie Murphy).
The movie showcases the various differences between the parents and how that affects the couple’s relationship. This is not a movie review, and I will leave any and all reviewing up to our A&E section. With it being Valentine’s Day and love being in the air, I more so want to have a discussion on what happens when “You People” plays out in real life, and how dating someone who is like you may or may not be beneficial.
When watching “You People,” I could not help but get to thinking that culture clashing is a real issue. Whether that be in friendships or relationships, sometimes we may never understand one another, which is what we are seeing being played out in this rom-com. But what happens when you do not get one another, but you love this person?
I cannot help but think of my former employers, who were also an interracial couple. One a white person and the other a black person from Africa. Not only did they differ in race, they differed in culture and in the general sense of how things work where they are both from. Despite all of that, you can’t help but notice how their love radiated, and though they were different, they were similar in wanting to love each other as best as they could.
The world is a large place, and as the saying goes “there are plenty of fish in the sea.” The fish will indeed be different, but what can you do to acknowledge that difference? I think a key takeaway from this film is acknowledging the differences and the struggles one another has to go through, but it is also coming together and checking your biases and privilege in order to be open with one another.
As for culture clashes, instead of throwing ourselves into the ring of Oppression Olympics, why not create an understanding?
The world is a cruel and tough place, and it is shown in both history and the present. The last thing we need to have a debate about is which was worse: slavery or the holocaust. Instead, we should be acknowledging two entirely different groups of people going through an event so traumatic it left scars for many generations and how we can heal those scars and create a better world.
It is Valentine’s Day and love — not hate — is in the air, so go love each other.
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