To some people, Hollywood may be a “different world” — nudge, nudge — than it was when Sinbad’s 1987 TV show about a group of students trying to make it at a historically Black college hit the air. But the actor-comedian, who played Coach Walter Oakes on the sitcom, has publicly taken issue with Fred Armisen dressing up as Barack Obama on Saturday Night Live recently and also feels that the controversey surrounding Obama’s pastor has raised some important issues as well.
“If you have not lived as a minority you don’t have to pay attention to a lot of things in America. And then when it’s brought up…they get mad, they don’t want you to bring it up, they get angry,” Sinbad told EW.com. “I mean sometimes, even as minorities, you don’t want to say it. But you know what, you gotta say it, you can’t let it go and people get all bent out of shape. That’s why I’m glad the whole thing came up with Barack; I’m glad everything came up the pastor. Everybody’s freaked out like… this man was anti-American. How can he be anti-American? He’s a marine. He’s saying what he felt about America at a given time.”
As for the blackface SNL skit, Sinbad sees the whole thing pretty simply. “It’s just Hollywood,” he said. “Hollywood could care less. Hollywood is about bank, it’s not about finding a black entertainer. As long as it’s bringing money to the box office. It’s cut and dry. It is what it is.”