Monique Angela Hicks, professionally called Mo’Nique, is known for being a famous black female comedian and Oscar-winning actress. She has had her own television show, “The Parkers,” has had her own late night talk show, “The Mo’Nique Show,” and has been doing stand-up comedy since she was a college student. She has had a very strong and well-rounded career as of late. She is also known for being outspoken and blackballed from Hollywood.
Recently, she caught people’s attention when she posted an Instagram video asking people to boycott one of the most powerful streaming movie and TV sites in the world: Netflix. She claims Netflix offered her $500,000 to do a comedy special while the comedian Amy Schumer was offered $11 million and was able to negotiate for $13 million.
I am not surprised. This issue of women of color being paid less has been happening across all platforms. However, I listened to the rest of the video and realized she was not saying that Schumer did not deserve the money, because she does. She was noticing that Schumer was able to get that amount in the first place.
After understanding that, I felt for Mo’Nique. I saw what stance she was trying to make. She wants to expose Netflix for the biases. I admit that boycotting Netflix is not going to work because of how many people use Netflix in their daily lives. Even I use Netflix everyday and will probably continue to use it, but I do think it is important that she is bringing this to light.
She also mentioned that the comedians Dave Chapelle and Chris Rock were both offered over $15 million dollars compared to her and Schumer. Netflix’s explanation for this was their resumes but when you look through Mo’Nique’s resume, she has done the same amount—maybe even more work than those men. It does not add up. Netflix’s choices were the result of gender and color bias. It is not fair, and I do believe Mo’Nique should be offered more money. I think she deserves it.
People may not like her approach to this issue and have ignored it, but I have not. I also do not think people understand how important it is for equality in these situations. These women are the faces of many projects and brands but are not being compensated for it. We did get some memes out of the video, which is fitting for Mo’Nique—who is a comedian herself— but I hope people at least heard her message. I wish people were not selective when hearing the truth because if it was someone that people believed to be popular or less problematic, they would probably stand with them instead of against them. If people put in the work, they know their worth and fight for it.