In an interview with Fox and Friends, Trump said that although the all-white acting nominee pool for this year's Academy Awards is "a tough situation," it's not dissimilar from the all-black nominee lists at the BET Awards.
"The whites don't get any nominations," he said, referring to Fox contributor Stacey Dash's previous comments about the BET Awards. "I've never even thought of it from that standpoint."
The BET Awards, launched in 2001, honor the best in culture from the previous year, focusing on works and performances from black creators. This fits, of course, because BET stands for Black Entertainment Television. The Academy Awards air on ABC, which does not stand for White Entertainment Television.
Notably, the BET Awards have indeed nominated white performers before, despite that not being the stated mission of the show. Eminem was nominated as recently as 2012 as part of the hip-hop duo Bad Meets Evil. The rapper has also performed at the awards ceremony.
Trump continued by saying that there have been previous years when black performers were nominated for Oscars. "I've watched over the years where African-Americans have in fact received Academy Awards and have in fact been represented," he said. "This doesn't happen to be one of those years."
Multiple performers of color were eligible for Oscar nominations this year, many in movies that were acknowledged in other categories. Academy president Cheryl Boone Isaacs herself called for a reevaluation of Oscar voting membership for future years Monday evening. Through those potential changes, perhaps the Academy can make sure "those years" Trump talks about aren't the exception, but the rule.
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