Lindsay of Arabia, the long awaited sequel to Lawrence of Arabia, is set to be released later this year.The sequel picks up in the year 2017, where the perpetually troubled and out of work Lindsay Lohan stars as a globetrotting actress who claims to sorta kind of be converting to Islam. A subplot is also the troubling “double checking” she experienced at security while donning a head scarf at an airport.
Ok, the movie isn’t happening, but the story is true.
Various articles titled, “Lindsay Lohan Claim She Was Racially Profiled,” or some version of that made the news today. I took a moment to actually watch a clip of her interview on Good Morning Britain and I did not hear her say the words “racially profiled.” She speaks of being “double checked.”
Groan. Really Lindsay. My disdain for this story cannot be expressed sufficiently in words. There is a level of absurdity to the entire thing. I need a meme of my face in its current contorted state. Envision a face. Now think of the smell of rotten eggs. That’s my face at the moment.
I am not sure what she’s trying to accomplish here. Are we making a statement? Are we just discussing her experience? Is she just gabbing with no intent at all?
The cynical part of me thinks it’s convenient that in this current climate she is now wearing head scarfs and maybe converting to Islam (but won’t say). Definitely a great way to create publicity. Maybe I just want a better ambassador for this story – someone with a less questionable history. For example, I loved that Caitlyn Jenner was open about her struggle and journey as a transgender woman. However, I hated that the messenger for such an important matter was a member of the Kardashian-Jenner fame-obsessed clan.
Racial profiling is a serious issue. It’s a timely subject to discuss. Does this topic really need to be brought to us via Lindsay Lohan? Are we unable to empathize with an actual Muslim woman telling this tale? How about an actress – any actress – of color? Can the media find no one else to bring attention to this?
Now don’t get me wrong, I loved Freaky Friday and Mean Girls as much as the next person. I loved Parent Trap even more as a kid. I am not trying to hate on Lindsay. But in these politically charged and racially sensitive times, I am not sure I want this lesson to coming from Lindsay.
When Ms. Streep dressed down Trump last month, without mentioning him by name, I cheered her on. In my opinion, her message was clear, succinct, and no disrespect to Ms. Lohan was delivered by a generally respected actress. She also knew what she was trying to say. Frankly, I don’t know what Lindsay is trying to say.
In the span of six minutes, she talks about the incident at the airport while wearing a head scarf and being “double checked” and how it made her think.Ok, what do you think about racial profiling Lindsay? Then she continues on about her dabbling in Islam. Piers Morgan presses her about converting to Islam, which doesn’t seem like an odd question based on the flow of the interview. She dances around that. And lastly when asked about Mr. Trump, she declares that she does not like Mr. Trump’s policies but he is President, people are dramatic, and Trump shouldn’t be kicked while he is down
That last position alone is why I can’t be bothered with this. Yes, Trump is President but many Muslim-Americans don’t have the benefit in this country of shrugging and going, well he is the President so you know all will be ok and don’t kick him while he’s down.
It must be nice to have the privilege to dabble in a misunderstood and ostracized religion without any negative consequences associated with being perceived as a true member of that religion. As she notes, when she was “double checked” and people realized she was Lindsay Lohan, they apologized and left her alone. I am not even certain this is a case of racial profiling. Maybe the apology came from the realization that a celebrity was forced to endure some inconvenience – nothing more. Her celebrity status is a form of privilege as well.
I admit that I am probably being a little hard on Ms. Lohan. Maybe her thoughts on the subject aren’t fully formed yet. If so, I wish she would have stuck to discussing movies or now being mature at 30.
Going back to an earlier point I made, let me be clear in what I am trying to say. Muslim-Americans are people who practice Islam are looked at suspiciously. We have a President enacting policies seemingly targeting them with a broad brush. People of color, in general, have and continue to be being racially profiled in this country. I don’t need Lindsay Lohan to be the face of the story. Let’s not trivialize something as important as this.
You can watch the clip below: