I read this morning that the reality t.v. show Survivor is going to split up its contestants next season into four tribes according to race; Asian-Americans, African-Americans, Whites, and Hispanics. The concept stopped me in my tracks.
At first, the idea in and of itself--that race was to be delineated--shocked me. But there is nothing wrong with declaring unique ethnicities. It's a wonderful privilege, especially in this country, to be able to celebrate one's unique lineage and heritage. But for some reason, delineation of races struck me as "incorrect" in our current atmosphere of political correctness. In fact, many Caucasians go out of their way NOT to distinguish someone's race for fear of crossing that line into politically incorrectness. I do not have a problem with Survivor bringing attention to someone's particular ethnicity. That's not what bothers me.
What I do have a problem with is the show pitting one race or ethnicity against each other like some high school football game. "We've got spirit, yes we do. We've got spirit, how 'bout you!" I find the show's new concept of teams of race revolutionary in the sense that yes, it's okay to celebrate one's unique ethnicity and it's time we talked out it, but I also find it in bad taste as the show will most likely have contestants and audience members rooting for their own in a contest to see which race will win. Delineation between races should not be a contest. And in a the upcoming season of Survivor, I don't see how there can be any true winners.