Kerry Washington Gets Real About Mike Brown

by Maitri Suhas

Even though Kerry Washington didn't win the Emmy on Monday night for Best Lead Actress in a Drama, she still made history for best dress slit. No one can pull off that shade of tangerine like Kerry, seriously. But in a more somber moment during her red carpet interview, Washington talked about her mixed feelings about the awards show. On the pre-show red carpet, the interviewer asked: "There's a potential for you to make history as the first African American to win in [the Best Actress] category; have you wrapped your head around that, or do you think about it at all?"

Instead of discussing her own role in making history to potentially be the first black female winner of the award, or the fact that she's the first black woman to be nominated in the category in almost 20 years, Washington instead brought up the tragic news of the day: the Michael Brown shooting. She replied: "I don't think about it that much. You know, this has been a really complicated day for me. I started the day watching the funeral services for Michael Brown, so its a lot to wrap your head around being an African American in this country right now."

Jason Merritt/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Even though her response was short and candid, it just further proves how aware, graceful and poised Washington is. She was one of the first celebrities to react to the news on her Twitter to the loathsome act of violence against the teenager in Ferguson, and at the Emmys, showed that even though there is a celebratory television awards show going on, there's still an outside world. She removed herself from the insular glamour of the red carpet, which was jarring but necessary.

Even though she's one of the biggest names in television at the moment, and a stunning beacon of fashion and poise, she reminded everyone that she is still part of a struggle of racial tension in this country. So even though she didn't win an Emmy (hopefully that will change next year), she gets my award for being the realest on the red carpet and remembering that after the theater lights go down and the after-party Instagrams have all been posted, there's a real world out there to battle.