Crash and Privilege, Power, and Difference

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Matthew Miller
Paper #1: Privilege, Power, and Difference* and *Crash
The Movie Crashis set in Los Angeles and begins when several people are involved in a multi-car accident. From there the movie skips to the day before where we see the lives of several of the characters who were involved in the crash and the racial problems they encounter that day. The moviebegins by showing an Islamic man and his daughter going into a gun shop to by a gun. When the Islamic man speaks in a different language to his daughter the store clerk says to him “Hey Osama, plan your Jihad on your own time.” An argument ensues and the daughter ends up staying in the store and buying the gun, and instead of bullets she accidentally buys blanks asammo, however the clerk does not tell her this. The movie then skips to a couple of young black men who are complaining about the service they received at a restaurant. One of them says it is because of the stereotype that blacks don’t tip very well, and thensays that he didn’t tip anything because of the poor service. As the two black men are walking down the street they come across a white politician and his wife. When the politician’s wife sees the black men coming towards them she gets closer to her husband. One of the black men noticesthis and points it out. Shortly after they pass each other the young black men steal the white couples’ car at gunpoint. The politician’s wife is really upset about being carjacked and has all of the locks in their house changed. When the locksmith comes and she sees that he is Hispanic she takes her anger out on him. The movie then shows a white LAPD officer who is trying to get medical help for his ailing father. The officeris having problems with a black clerk who won’t give the officers father permission to see another doctor. The white officer takes his frustration out on a black couple during a traffic stop and ends up sexually assaulting the woman. Next the Persian from the beginning of the movie calls the Hispanic locksmith to have him fix the lock at the shop that he owns. The Hispanic locksmith tells the Persian that he changed the lock but it wouldn’t do any good because he needs to replace the door. The Persian gets mad and tells the locksmith to fix the door and the locksmith said that he doesn’t do that, he just fixes locks. The Persian shopkeeper gets really mad about this. Shortly after this,the Persian man’s shop is robbed, and because he didn’t replace the door insurance will not cover the damage. The Persian man is extremely upset about this and blames it on the Mexican Locksmith. The white police officer has another run in with the HMO clerk. The white police officer basically tells the clerk that she only got that job because of affirmative action and that she probably beat out eightmore qualified white men for the job. He also tells her that despite the fact that his father’s janitorial service employed only black men he was forced out of business by affirmative action laws. The movie then goes to the crash where the black lady that was assaulted earlier in the movieis trapped in her car and surrounded by gasoline. It is only a matter of time before the car will explode and the first officer on the scene is the white officer who assaulted her earlier. The black lady initially tells him to go away, but he is very nice to her and ensures her that he is only trying to save her. He pulls her out of the car just before the car explodes. The movie then shows the Hispanic locksmith getting home from work, where he is then approached by the angry Persian shopkeeper, who blames him for his store being robbed and pulls a gun on him. The Hispanic locksmith’s daughter sees the gun pulled on her dad and runs in front of him just before the Persian man pulls the trigger. The shot is fired and everyone thinks the young girl has been shot, but since the Persian man’s daughter accidentally bought blanks in the beginning of themovie the young girl is fine....
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