During the most recent episode of her family’s hit internet series ‘Red Table Talk,’ Willow Smith questioned if the prevelance put on cancel culture in current society is neccesary, asking if it truly helps grow society as a whole or only hinders it.
The 19-year-old musician and actress made her comments regarding the highly controversial topic on the special Juneteenth episode of the show, sitting down with her mother Jada Pinkett Smith, grandmother Adrienne Banfield Norris, as well as civil rights activists Tamika D. Mallory and Dr. Angela Davis to discuss the often-touchy subject in detail.
During the episode, Pinkett Smith said that they should pivot the conversation to the topic of so many significant figures in popular culture being “cancelled” because of their past mistakes.
“That is so prevalent right now,” her daughter responded candidly to the prompted topic. “I’m seeing people shaming others, like saying really terrible things, shaming people for what they’re choosing to say or shaming people for not really saying anything at all,” she continued to mention of the toxicity cancel culture propagates.
“But I feel like if we really want change, shaming doesn’t lead to learning,” she added to her argument, maintaining that completely “canceling” a person for their mistakes does not allow the individual to learn to do better, simply punishes and relegates them to that one mistake forever.
“Cancel culture is a little dangerous. It definitely is because none of us are perfect,” the younger Smith continued to say, defending the notion that people can change and better themselves after their wrongdoings.
Mallory, who is notable for her social justice work, responded to Smith’s comment by agreeing that individuals should be given the opportunity to change, but adding that it can only come about if it is of genuine intent and not because of the internet bullying them to do so, “It is a space that is a little difficult to maneuver because you do have to leave people room to make mistakes, to grow and to learn, but they have to show that they’re willing.”
Pinkett Smith originally teased the loaded Juneteenth ‘Red Table Talk’ episode on Instagram, where she mourned the loss of Rayshard Brooks, who was killed by Atlanta police after receiving a call regarding a man sleeping in a car in a Wendy’s parking lot.
“This morning, another black man is dead at the hands of the police. Rayshard Brooks. This week on the ‘Red Table,’ we’ll be filming an episode with Tamika D. Mallory and Dr. Angela Davis around the issue of racism in black America and the state of emergency that black people are in in this nation. I would like to include you in the conversation,” she said to viewers.