Gabrielle Union was recently separated from America’s Got Talent after she complained about racism on set.
Variety claimed that Union was told her hair was “too black” for the show and its viewers. Union also spoke out about the jokes Jay Leno cracked when he was on set. The concerning joke was later removed from the show.
Grey’s Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo spoke up about Union’s departure from the show. She tweeted, “It’s unfortunate that @nbc the same network that protected disgusting men like Matt Lauer and punished women for speaking out or not putting up with it… has not changed their practices or culture. I support @itsgabrielleu commitment to speaking up to injustice. It takes courage.”
She added, “This is a teaching moment.. It’s important..white girls I’m talking to you..whether you truly understand what racial injustice is or not..that you stand with your sisters on the front lines. Don’t cut side deals & don’t not get involved because it isn’t your issue..because it is workplace cultures will continue to be toxic until there is unity and solidarity among all women.”
“If you go for self in these moments you undermine the work we are out here trying to do. Obviously this network feels like they can operate like this and it’s okay,” she added.
Union’s husband Dwayne Wade also spoke up against her firing. He wrote, “…when I got the news that my wife was being fired—my first question was obviously why!? I am still waiting on a good answer to that question. But if anyone knows @itsgabrielleu or have heard of her you know she’s an advocate for our community and culture.”
“As proud as i were of her being selected as a judge on #AGT— I am even more proud of her standing up for what she stands for and that’s US,” he continued.
Union responded to the support she received, writing, “So many tears, so much gratitude,” she wrote on Twitter. “THANK YOU! Just when you feel lost, adrift, alone… you got me up off the ground. Humbled and thankful, forever.”
A spokesperson for the show told E!, “America’s Got Talent has a long history of inclusivity and diversity in both our talent and the acts championed by the show. The judging and host line-up has been regularly refreshed over the years and that is one of the reasons for AGT’s enduring popularity. NBC and the producers take any issues on set seriously.”
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