Jada Pinkett Smith is tackling her own "preconceived prejudices" in a powerful new Red Table Talk episode

By Alexia Fernández
May 26, 2020 05:59 PM
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Jada Pinkett Smith is confronting an issue that has deeply divided African American culture.

In a PEOPLE exclusive look at this week's Red Table Talk, Pinkett Smith, her daughter Willow, and her mother Adrienne Banfield Norris sit down to discuss colorism within the black community.

"It’s discrimination or prejudice based on skin tone, from members of the same race," Pinkett Smith explained. "It began during slavery. Owners often raped their slaves who gave birth to light-skinned children."

Those children who had lighter-skinned tones "were given preferential treatment," the actress said. "Lighter meant better, smarter and more beautiful."

"This hateful bias seeped into black culture and continues to divide us," she added.

Also joining the Facebook Watch show this week is Pinkett Smith's best friend, Mia, and her daughter Madison, whom Pinkett Smith considers her "niece."

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Jada Pinkett Smith

"We confront our own preconceived prejudices right here at the table," Pinkett Smith said.

In a segment in which Mia attempts to explain how colorism can come through in recent times, she told Banfield Norris, "They’re going to put you in a light-skinned, fair category."

Shocked, the grandmother asked her, "You consider me fair?" to which Mia replied, "Yes."

The family has previously touched on issues involving race and discrimination, with Pinkett Smith admitting in a November 2018 episode that she had her own "biases" when it came to white women.

"I have to admit I’m guilty to that to a certain degree because I do have my own biases, specifically to blonde women," she said at the time.

"Blonde hair on white women just triggers me," the Girls Trip star said while snapping her fingers. "I’ve had to catch myself."

Her mother asked her, "Do you have a specific incident with someone who had blonde hair?"

"Absolutely. All throughout my childhood. I do remember experiencing being teased by white women in regards to my hair, how I looked, feeling belittled," Pinkett Smith said.

Red Table Talk airs Wednesdays on Facebook Watch at 9 a.m. PT / 12 p.m. ET.