The pitfalls just keep coming. The very same day I posted the results of my antisocial experiment (Dare To Disconnect), I learn that Star Wars actress Kelly Marie Tran had finally reached the limits of harassment and removed herself from social media. I was deeply saddened by this news, but not surprised. My own disconnection, stemming from personal distraction, was a choice made in an effort to self-reflect and to ponder my own insecurities. It was a short-term mission to determine the impact on my quality of life. I concluded the 3-day trial with a better understanding of myself and felt cautiously optimistic about my ability to stay connected, then I read about Ms. Tran.
— Star Wars Facts (@SWTweets) June 5, 2018
After enduring several months of crude racial and performance comments regarding her portrayal of Rose Tico in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, Kellie Marie Tran deleted all her posts from Instagram @kellymarietran and left only a black and white profile picture with a bio that reads “Afraid, but doing it anyway.” It seems that being the first lead female of color in the legendary Star Wars Universe has only brought out the worst in some narrow-minded individuals. It is a shame that Ms. Tran cannot celebrate her role in helping to bring forth diversity, something she clearly holds close to heart as indicated in a recent interview.
“…bringing diversity to the Star Wars world has been both an honor and a responsibility. I feel so overwhelmed. A lot of ‘Star Wars’ fans who are specifically Asian never had a character they could dress up like, or they would and people would always call them ‘Asian Rey’ or ‘Asian fill-in-the-blank.’ I get very emotional when I see people who are able to identify with this character. That means a lot to me and I don’t think it will ever get old.” Source: Variety
Star Wars fans have certainly proven themselves to be a passionate group of people, many of whom I admire and call my friends. Sadly though there are attention seeking bullies, in every fandom, with a need for negativity and a desire to hurt. My hope is that Kelly finds the inner strength to come back and share her life with the fans that admire her.