MORGAN FREEMAN SAYS BLACK HISTORY MONTH
IS "RIDICULOUS" BECAUSE IT SEPARATES BLACK HISTORY
FROM AMERICAN HISTORY -- "60 MINUTES" SUNDAY
Television often celebrates black history month with his films, but Morgan Freeman thinks the whole idea of a month for black history is "ridiculous." The African American actor tells Mike Wallace he is against a special month because it separates black history from American history and is part of a labeling process that abets racism. 60 MINUTES profiles the Oscar winner on Sunday Dec. 18 (7:00-8:00 PM, ET/PT) on the CBS Television Network.
"You're going to relegate my history to a month,?" Freeman asks Wallace in their discussion of black history month. After noting there is no "white history month," he says, "I don't want a black history month. Black history is American history."
The notion of a special month for black history may be hurting rather than helping efforts for racial equality, believes Freeman. When Wallace wonders that without black history month, racism may be harder to stop and asks, "How are we going to get rid of racism?" Freeman retorts, "Stop talking about it!"
Freeman believes the labels "black" and "white" are an obstacle to beating racism. "I am going to stop calling you a white man and I'm going to ask you to stop calling me a black man," he says. "I know you as Mike Wallace. You know me as Morgan Freeman. You wouldn't say, 'Well, I know this white guy named Mike Wallace.' You know what I'm saying?" Freeman asks Wallace.
Freeman, who won his first Oscar for the supporting role he played in "Million Dollar Baby" last year, also discusses his acting career and his several Academy Award nominations, his love of sailing, and his more recent hobby, piloting a plane.