What's up everyone. We are doing a contest with T.I. and we are giving away $1200 a day for the next 10 days. Just wanted to give you all a heads up.
https://www.allhiphop.com/ti

Court Bauer, Former WWE Writer, on Racism, Sexism, and Homophobia in the writer's room

herbalism101herbalism101 Members Posts: 1,286 ✭✭✭✭✭
Former WWE writer Court Bauer sat down with the Kings of Sport Podcast to discuss an array of wrestling-related topics. The enlightening conversation quickly zeroed in on the xenophobic and myopic culture of WWE creative—the make-or-break division that churns out endless ideas for content featured on WWE television and pay-per-view.

Most informed fans don't have to be a fly on the wall in a writer's meeting to become suspicious of prejudice behavior in WWE. Watching Ron "R-Truth" Killings' entrance will take care of that.

What was equally disheartening was the structure of WWE's homogeneous hierarchy. The promotion seemed equipped to appropriately book the All-American types while freezing out all other types of Americans.

Bauer expressed concerns with the predominately white, predominately male makeup of WWE's writing staff.

Aside from racism, the element of sexism presided. According to Bauer, WWE Vice President Stephanie McMahon has pushed for more female employees like Jen Bloodsworth who, according to Bauer, "really rose up the ranks and impressed a lot of people" before pursuing a career in improv and comedy.

But the lack of diversity in one of WWE's most pivotal departments has had its share of adverse effects both in and out of the ring. Bauer only scratched the surface when telling a story of a writer referring to a match between two African-Americans as a gimmick vs. gimmick.

It actually gets much worse.

"I've heard Vice Presidents use the N word," Bauer said. "I heard Vince say 'I'd consider fairly racist stuff targeting certain Latin performers in the company' in meetings. There was, at one point, one African-American on the writing team. He lasted three-to-four months."

"It is definitely a problem in that company when you have someone like me or a 55-year-old dude from Alabama booking minorities because—I've talked about this a lot with (former WCW and TNA wrestler) Konnan—because, like, we can't give you a perspective of what a Hispanic hero could and should be and what's relatable in their community and what's relatable in their culture. We can only see from the outside and kinda project what that is."


Top Agent/Producer Michael Hayes was once suspended for using a racial slur against Mark Henry. According to former WWE writer Court Bauer, he was back in the catbird seat within a year. (Photo Courtesy of WWE Video)

An outsider's interpretation on the motivations of an individual does help the creative aspect. However, it also makes it difficult to capture the element of reality necessary to piece a coherent story together.

It doesn't help that minority wrestlers seem to be on thinner ice internally. Bauer spoke of one of the many double standards in WWE.

"I've talked to a lot of wrestlers out in WWE—a lot of African Americans—and the interesting thing [is] the double standard in terms of looking the other way," he said. "Whether it's saying something backstage or the amount of warnings you get, it is not balanced compared to what a lot of the white guys get."

[African-American's] are held to a different set of standards I believe. Just put it this way, Mark Henry was called the N word to his face by a vice president. And that guy, within a year, had the same job, had, if not, a higher pay scale and had the same amount of power. In a publicly traded company. People say 'it's the good 'ole boy mentality' but I've been in wrestling a long time and I never saw racism until I got to WWE. Not anywhere."

The glass ceiling for most minorities in WWE is so prevalent it's almost non-metaphorical.

Shelton Benjamin was drafted to Raw in the 2004 WWE draft. The draft was a shrewd method to manufacture cannibalistic competition between Raw and SmackDown. It was the only solution to the adverse effects of being a unipolar wrestling power.
«1

Comments

  • CopperCopper The WickMembers Posts: 49,531 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Good 🤬 ...and like the article said its common knowledge to even the black casual fan
  • Mr.LVMr.LV Members Posts: 14,089 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Nothing surprises me kofi Kingston is the recent best example in WWE of clearly being held back.
  • Chi-Town BullyChi-Town Bully Members Posts: 29,218 ✭✭✭✭✭
    This problem will never change. African Americans aren't in the demographic that they're trying to please. They had numerous great white hopes since i been alive like Hogan, Hart, Michaels and Cena. They have had Hispanic hero's who was on top of the company like Eddie Guerrero and when he passed it was Rey Mysterio and now it's Alberto Del Rio. African Americans will never be made the top guy, even the women of color do nothing but shuck and jive on television now
  • Trollio Trollio Trollololololololololol Members Posts: 25,817 ✭✭✭✭✭
    scust at wwe
    i will no longer as a black man pay for any of their products
  • 5th Letter5th Letter Black Identified Extremist Members, Moderators, Writer Posts: 37,068 Regulator
    I bet if MVP was white he'd been a multiple world champion by now.
  • CopperCopper The WickMembers Posts: 49,531 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I dont wanna hear 🤬 bout a demographic....if its in the best interest of the storyline it should be done. Entertainment should be the first priority....Simmons and booker was champ in wcw and the world didn't come to an end...the wwe is just a good ole boy company...🤬 a demographic... why u think heels become championships? BC it furthers the storyline....and wrestling is shown globally and watched by all races GTFOH with that
  • stonefacestoneface Members Posts: 2,491 ✭✭✭✭
    Broddie wrote: »
    The Booker T/HHH feud is possibly the most offensive thing I've ever seen in pro wrestling since I started watching in 1987.

    What happened with this feud? Why was it offensive? I, myself, stopped watching like in late 2000 and just recently started again earlier this year so I missed that whole 🤬 . What went down?

  • BroddieBroddie just me and my bitch NYCMembers Posts: 11,750 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2013
    stoneface wrote: »
    Broddie wrote: »
    The Booker T/HHH feud is possibly the most offensive thing I've ever seen in pro wrestling since I started watching in 1987.

    What happened with this feud? Why was it offensive? I, myself, stopped watching like in late 2000 and just recently started again earlier this year so I missed that whole 🤬 . What went down?


    When WWF bought WCW a lot of the bigger stars from that company like Sting, DDP, Goldberg and the NWO stayed at home and got paid for it thanks to clauses in their AOL/Time Warner contracts. The biggest & most notable homegrown star they had from the company to show on WWF TV at the time was Booker T. He got a push and put in a program for the WHC (aka the WCW big gold belt Booker held before the buyout) against HHH with the blowoff match being on the grandest stage in the game, Wrestlemania. Keep in mind that HHH was the only active wrestler to be a member of the booking committee since his buddy Shawn Michaels as of 1997.

    All the promos and segments that were booked to fuel the feud had heavily racist overtones and were cringeworthy to sit through at times because of it such as

    and more infamously



    ^ which I can't find the regular promo version of anymore without the user commentary texts.

    This video package from WM 19 covers most of the material




    Booker T had tremendous momentum going into the match. HHH had heeled it up so badly during the build up that everybody was waiting for him to do the job by the end to the babyface (Booker) as is normal procedure with any main even feud. Instead Booker got screwed by HHH and his pal Shawn Michaels backstage and booked to lose and look like a damn fool throughout the match thus derailing all his momentum in one fell swoop.

    The message being 🤬 industry tropes (the heel loses to the face who overcame the odds after a really heated build up) a black man is in no way worthy of going over the white guy 🤬 the boss' daughter even if it's the logical storytelling resolution because they could never be equals. Understandably this disgusted many people as it buried Booker when he should've gone over and made it seem like all the blatant racism used towards him in the build up is perfectly fine by having the guy who dished it out carry on as a champion in the company while Booker goes back to the drawing board. What made it worse was that it didn't stop there.

    In 2003 the NWO finally showed up. At some point Hall and Hogan left leaving Nash the other founding member and one of HHH's best friends to form a new version of the NWO with Big Show (The Giant) who was once a member in WCW. This new version also eventually featured X Pac and Shawn Michaels HHH's other best friends as well. They decided to add Booker to this program. After that it consisted of HHH's friends doing everything to make Booker seem like a token 🤬 they didn't even want in their presence and humiliating him and further burying him and derailing any momentum he had coming to WWE with such classic moments as



    and



    It took Booker T years to recover from that though he did recover and eventually was further compensated for the embarresment with an HOF induction. Similar to what Vince did to compensate one of the most over guys and biggest draws in the territory days in his time (Koko B Ware) who became nothing but a jobbing shucking and jiving 🤬 when Vince brought him over to the WWF because it was the way Vince felt he should be booked.
  • Trollio Trollio Trollololololololololol Members Posts: 25,817 ✭✭✭✭✭
    cant wait for vince to die
  • BroddieBroddie just me and my bitch NYCMembers Posts: 11,750 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2013
    Dub_Deux wrote: »
    cant wait for vince to die

    Damn lol.

    But unless Shane comes back which he won't things won't end up changing anyway. Paul Levesque and Vince McMahon share a lot of the same sensibilities. It's why he was put on the booking committee when he wasn't even in the upper mid card back in 1997. Vince listens to what Paul has to say a lot. Which makes it pretty fitting that Paul ended up becoming his son in law in the end.

    HHH truly knew how to "play the game" IMO he became the best industry politician ever when he learned it from HBK. Even better than Hogan. For the simple fact that he was not anywhere near HBK's level in terms of popularity till he booked himself that way despite really only being known as Shawn's bag boy & a jobber to the stars before DX.
  • stonefacestoneface Members Posts: 2,491 ✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2013
    @Broddie

    Good lookin out on the response. SMH @ all that 🤬 , especially the bathroom one and the confrontation clip with the "nappy hair" comment.
  • Recaptimus_Prime360Recaptimus_Prime360 Earned my Masters and Ph.d in Phat Booty-ology Members Posts: 64,802 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yeah I kinda been known the racism with black wrestlers. MVP, Mark, Kofi were the 3 I remember who had big pushes, and thought they were gonna elevate their career. Kofi's moment was Madison Square Garden against Orton, when he did his signature leg drop off that rail. Thought for sure he was gonna take off after that. Smh.

    I wanna know Booker's take on all of this.
  • Already Home_17Already Home_17 Members Posts: 14,572 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Broddie wrote: »
    Sorry in advance for the long post. But chances are if your read the opening post you could read efficiently enough to take a glance at my two cents on this topic here.

    I'm shocked at all the people that are surprised by any of this. I've known this 🤬 for damn near 2 decades now and it's a key reason why I never attended a WWF event or given them any type of money since I was in high school in the late 90's. Hell I stopped watching their shows altogether for damn near 10 years in late '02 because The Booker T/HHH feud is possibly the most offensive thing I've ever seen in pro wrestling since I started watching in 1987.

    Which says something cause I grew up in an era where Tito Santana went from being a prominent midcarder to becoming "The Matador" jobber to the stars despite not being Spanish but Mexican American. I also saw a lot of blatant racism during the odd times I would watch early WCW and I saw it many times in WWF in the late 80's and early 90's as well.

    Then during the rare times I would tune in to RAW or Smackdown after 2002 especially Smackdown thanks to that genius Michael 🤬 Hayes who was the head of creative there I'd see 🤬 like Kung Funaki (a Japanese guy doing kung fu? smh) and Kerwin White. Though to their credit that latter gimmick was funny because it had real life accuracy unfortunately thanks to so many people being quick to sell out their integrity and culture for a dollar & white acceptance. At least they were sorta in touch with that one for a change.

    As a black hispanic I've found their depictions of hispanics despicably offensive over the years and these guys actually got to hold the title. Don't get me started on the way they do other minorities. Which is funny considering the huge African American and Hispanic fanbase they've had over the decades. I'm talking about since Pedro Morales and Junkyard Dog here.

    Yet so many of them are oblivious to the off screen agendas of WWE creative and will defend the McMahons like they were blood relatives like a bunch of 🤬 like Vince wouldn't be uncomfortable in their presence in real life. I credit Vince where he needs to be credited myself (GOAT promoter hands down) but when he does something foul I have no problem ever calling it out.

    Eddie was the only minority outside of The Rock that I found remotely decent with the treatment he was given and even he was a walking stereotype half the time & got the 🤬 end of the stick by always being denied his requests for time off. So he always ended up being in tremendous pain and never getting time off to heal. While people like Undertaker and HBK got to choose their own schedules.

    Eddie was the champ who gave up the title because the amount of work and appearances he had to do as a champ was overbearing on his frail body. He was the guy who would lay on his back in the training room the entire show until he had to go out and put on a show and like a pro you would never even notice the pain he was in at all. Then afterwards he'd go back limping all the way from the gorilla position to the locker room. That abuse helped lead to his death but to his credit white guys like Benoit and Angle (which is why he left) got the same treatment.

    In any case I'm so used to the blatant prejudices from WWE creative making it's way on to the product I've almost become desensitized to it. Nothing from this company shocks me anymore. When I was looking through clips of this past Monday's Raw and saw Vince nonchalantly ask Heyman "or do I need to repeat it in yiddish?" despite his jewish background NEVER EVER being a prominent part of his character at all I just knew some things will never change.

    Even if some people picked up on the blatant anti semitism of it all. Meaning that Heyman's character is a seedy, manipulative lying cheat which are also stereotypes usually attributed to Jews by anti semites. Yet to my recollection he's never even used Yiddish terms on WWE TV in the past and Vince still decides to blatantly refer to his judaism as a low blow despite it never being a defining trait of his character at all. I'm sure most fans didn't care. It happens when you watch this regularly. Even you become desensitized to blatant bullying from the company that keeps begging us all to B A Star.

    Then there was another little nugget of awesomeness when JBL said "I need to know where I could buy me one of those" in reference to Ricardo Rodriguez. It's been real during the company's entire history not just during the 80's were such ignorance still made sense since it reflected on the majority think thank of 80's white America. Hell the only progressive thinker in the entire McMahon clan (Shane) left the company in disgust partly because of this.

    I'm glad Bauer brought up that point about this being the only current wrestling organization that is this insensitive to society's progressive issues. The "good ol boy mentality is a staple of wrestling" excuse may have been valid when the Crockett's and the territories were still around alongside WWE. Due to the social mentality of the 60's through early 90's.

    Once a jewish guy from NY decided to takeover a little company called ECW in the mid 90's and said company had a lot of minority performers in prominent positions on the roster and creative team the industry progressed to a point that most promotions got off that. I've never heard even a quarter of the complaints lobbied at WWE from minorities (from 🤬 to jews to asians & females & blacks and hispanics) who worked for them and left in disgust being thrown in the direction of ROH or TNA.

    We've come too long a way as a society to allow 🤬 like this to be so openly practiced even in a carny run industry like pro wrestling. WWE is still a publicly traded fortune 500 company and should carry itself as such. I'm not an idiot prejudice and racism is clearly alive and well and will never die but at least most companies realize that they don't have the power to be practicing it so blatanly anymore. Minorities are becoming the majority in the country.

    Their roles in these companies & society in general are growing and the companies recognize it well everybody except WWE who's product no longer really reflects the trends of society at all and in turn seems really outdated because of it. Before anybody brings up the fact that one of the WWE executives is a minority (a woman) I will say that if it wasn't for nepotism she wouldn't even be there and even with that she still gets no real respect and a lot of her ideas get shut down just because they come from a female.

    get this dude a job at a bleacher report
    you broke that 🤬 down thoroughly
  • Already Home_17Already Home_17 Members Posts: 14,572 ✭✭✭✭✭
    darkone360 wrote: »
    Yeah I kinda been known the racism with black wrestlers. MVP, Mark, Kofi were the 3 I remember who had big pushes, and thought they were gonna elevate their career. Kofi's moment was Madison Square Garden against Orton, when he did his signature leg drop off that rail. Thought for sure he was gonna take off after that. Smh.

    I wanna know Booker's take on all of this.



    dude had one of the most famous arenas in the world chanting his name
  • Trollio Trollio Trollololololololololol Members Posts: 25,817 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Scust at edge injuring kofi before the chamber match n winnin the title when he already lost his. Chance

    Cracka ass cracka
  • jonojono Right fist = power, left fist = unity Members Posts: 30,280 ✭✭✭✭✭
    I wonder if anyone remembers why book left in 2006. I think something racist was said then too. He left after being forced to job to H again at Summerslam 2006.


    WWE's stereotyping goes waaaay back. That's been documented already here. 🤬 disgusting to be honest.

    Ohh it's ironic that Bauer mentioned the lack of minorities on the writing staff. Elijah Burke complained about the same thing Bauer was talking about, old white guys can't write story lines or dialog for black wrestlers. That's why most of them don't even talk. Smh
  • BroddieBroddie just me and my bitch NYCMembers Posts: 11,750 ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited June 2013
    jono wrote: »
    I wonder if anyone remembers why book left in 2006. I think something racist was said then too. He left after being forced to job to H again at Summerslam 2006.


    WWE's stereotyping goes waaaay back. That's been documented already here. 🤬 disgusting to be honest.

    Ohh it's ironic that Bauer mentioned the lack of minorities on the writing staff. Elijah Burke complained about the same thing Bauer was talking about, old white guys can't write story lines or dialog for black wrestlers. That's why most of them don't even talk. Smh

    Yeah that actually makes sense. Then when they hire a minority writer it's always a window of a few weeks given to them before they're unemployed again.

    It's funny too cause Big E and Titus have proven to be good talkers in the past yet that rarely gets displayed because they get no creative freedom with promos. I mean if you're not going to hire minority writers at least give the minority talent freedom on the mic to express themselves how a black, asian, hispanic etc. would really express themselves.

    Same thing with foreigners like Barrett and Antonio Cesaro who was a dynamo in the indy scene as Claudio Castagnoli because he had so much creative freedom over his character. It's what they used to do with all wrestlers in the past and why Iron Shiek, Bad News Brown, Junkyard Dog and The Rock caught on because of authentic mic presences despite working with out of touch and "all american" white bookers.

    I've been watching regularly again for almost a year now (since Brock came back). Since that time I admit to not giving not even one flying 🤬 about Kofi Kingston. But can you blame me? I know him as a smiling and shucking jobber who does nothing to separate himself from the pack at all and seems complacent with his spot on the roster.

    The Kofi Kingston I know is the guy who spends more time playing video games than working on his mic skills or perfecting and switching up his in ring craft. So to me at first he seemed like some really bland 🤬 who had no drive to do anything but be complacent with shucking and jiving for a check. He is such an obnoxious non entity that no 🤬 were ever given when he was on TV and I would just go ahead and change the channel.

    After realizing that he has no choice but to work with what he's given since WWE today is 100% writer driven in terms of what wrestlers say and do and how 🤬 everything he is given is I no longer blame him. I'd just play games and collect my check too knowing that all the effort I put to make myself better as a pro wrestler won't be acknowledged by creative and used in the product anyway.

    His presence is so generic they didn't even ever bother to correct the fact that he's billed from Ghana West Africa yet reps Jamaican culture in terms of style, wardrobe colors and his theme song being sang by a guy with a fake Jamaican accent. Despite them even addressing it themselves (HHH asking "Aren't you supposed to be Jamaican?" when he spoke with an American accent one time).

    Who knows what his real potential could be if he wasn't given such a vanilla gimmick that has nowhere to go but down. I've said it before and I'll say it again due to how he is being used dude is the 21st century Koko B. Ware. "Midcard for Life" should be his new slogan..
  • jonojono Right fist = power, left fist = unity Members Posts: 30,280 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Kofi is cool with me, its pretty obvious he's chillin at this point.

    I. Just thought of some more of the overt racism in wwe. Does anyone remember Shelton's fat mama or the performance from WM where Broadus Clay's mama was fat with a huge ass?

    Do they really think that 🤬 is funny? They think all black women look like that?

    Detestable.
  • Recaptimus_Prime360Recaptimus_Prime360 Earned my Masters and Ph.d in Phat Booty-ology Members Posts: 64,802 ✭✭✭✭✭
    jono wrote: »
    Kofi is cool with me, its pretty obvious he's chillin at this point.

    I. Just thought of some more of the overt racism in wwe. Does anyone remember Shelton's fat mama or the performance from WM where Broadus Clay's mama was fat with a huge ass?

    Do they really think that 🤬 is funny? They think all black women look like that?

    Detestable.



    That was pretty much the last straw with me.
  • YamoleySenseiYamoleySensei Members Posts: 8,509 ✭✭✭✭✭
    jono wrote: »
    Kofi is cool with me, its pretty obvious he's chillin at this point.

    I. Just thought of some more of the overt racism in wwe. Does anyone remember Shelton's fat mama or the performance from WM where Broadus Clay's mama was fat with a huge ass?

    Do they really think that 🤬 is funny? They think all black women look like that?

    Detestable.
    Not even a mama, more like a mammy....
    older-mammy.jpg
    02.jpg
  • DupacDupac Retired PurgatoryMembers, Writer Posts: 68,365 ✭✭✭✭✭
    yo when cm punk pointed that 🤬 out....i just knew they were gonna cut his mic
Sign In or Register to comment.