Penn announced the Best Picture award at Sunday night's ceremony, and just before he announced that Mexican-born director Alejandro González Iñárritu was going to win film of the year for Birdman, he made an insensitive comment.
"Who gave this son of a bitch his green card?" Penn said.
And although Penn and Iñárritu are good friends, with Penn even starring in the director's film 21 Grams, Twitter has been whipped into a frenzy by this comment. Many people have been calling Penn "racist" and "tacky" and there have even been some who have brought up the accusations that he is a woman-beater — Penn was reportedly very violent toward his ex-wife Madonna, and in one incident, he allegedly hit her across the head with a baseball bat.
I am more than a green card and pieces of papers--we all are. Talent is borderless, dreams are limitless. Live. @DefineAmerican— Jose Antonio Vargas (@joseiswriting) February 23, 2015
And great job Sean Penn. Ruining a fantastic moment with a green card "joke." #Tacky— Mario Lopez (@MarioLopezExtra) February 23, 2015
Reminder: Sean Penn beats women. #Oscars2015— KB (@KaraRBrown) February 23, 2015
Guys, Sean Penn is racist. Also, he beats women. Lest we forget. #Oscars2015— Elaisha Stokes (@ElaishaStokes) February 23, 2015
crazy that sean penn, the man who beat his wife with a bat in 1987, also tells racist jokes— Dan Glaser (@youranalogbuddy) February 23, 2015
Ah yes, Sean Penn, are we still pretending he's not a domestic abuser slash irrelevant male?— Yung Lean In (@amy_wood) February 23, 2015
However, there are some people who think that the Gangster Squad actor's terrible joke was just that: a joke, albeit a bad one.
There are many reasons to dislike Sean Penn but I'm having trouble getting worked up about that bad joke.— kept_simple (@kept_simple) February 23, 2015
I’ve written recommendation letters for green cards, and don’t find that Sean Penn joke offensive at all.— daveweigel (@daveweigel) February 23, 2015
Getting mad at Sean Penn for a joke is lazy, self aggrandizing, feel good slacktivism. Stuff like this makes libs look petty.— SecularTalk™ (@KyleKulinski) February 23, 2015
So, what does Iñárritu think of Penn's remarks? According to The Guardian, Iñárritu revealed his thoughts on the joke while backstage, saying, "I found it hilarious."
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