On the most recent episode of the “Red Table Talk,” Jada Pinkett Smith discusses race relationship between women and how it has affected her personally. She recalled one unpleasant encounter with police officers when she was a teenager.
Jada Pinkett Smith’s Facebook Watch show is known for tackling serious issues in conversations with her mother, Adrienne Banfield, her daughter Willow Smith, and other guests. The topics have gone from sexuality, gender, and drug use, to her marriage with Will Smith and her years-long feud with Gabrielle Union.
But in the last episode of the series, Pinkett Smith put the issue of racism, specifically the racial divide between women of color and white women, on the table.
“I have a lot of pain and hurt attached to some of the experience that I have had,” she started, recalling a particular experience from her youth that left a scar in her life.
It was during the Virginia Beach Riots back in 1989, when police and college students that were celebrating the annual Greekfest clashed on the streets.
Jada recalled that she was there alone, and found herself in the middle of the chaos trying to go back to her hotel when she faced the police. She said:
“I will never forget, there were these two white officers. I was like, ‘I’m just trying to get down the street, so I can get to my hotel,’ and they said, ‘You better get your [N-word] [expletive] ass off this street right now.’”
However, she pointed out that “that’s specifically the white men experience versus what I’ve had specifically in regards to race with white females,” since the topic of discussion was focused on the race experience between women.
Adrienne Banfield then interjected, stating that she doesn’t separate male from female when it comes to racism, she feels the same rejection and anger towards everyone.
The 65-year-old opened about her own hurtful experiences with racism, recalling that as a teenager, she wasn’t allowed to get in stores and try hats, get into the bowling alley or sit at the counter to have some ice cream. “It still bites,” she stated.
“I can remember working in white corporate America, and I was talking about remembering we couldn’t go to Tiffany’s and try on clothes,” she said. “One of my bosses said to me, ‘Yeah, now you can go and try them on and steal them.'”
Banfield admitted she has a lot of work to do when it comes to changing the perception she has of white women in general.
“I feel we as women should know better, I really do,” Pinkett Smith chimed in. And continued:
“Because we're women, because of the struggles we have had as women. There should be a natural understanding and familiarity of our struggle. And then to be part of creating more of a struggle for other women to me is criminal.”
The “Red Table Talk” premiered last February, and the audience received it so well that the second season started last month with a bang, as the first episode featured Will Smith.
The family talked about their marriage and slammed down rumors about being swingers, Scientologists and more.