You give the world the internet, they give you trolls. An online petition has been circulating urging ABC to fire Jesse Williams from Grey’s Anatomy for his “racist” speech at the BET Awards, which touched on everything from police brutality to cultural appropriation. “ABC needs to understand that they will lose ratings if they don’t stand up for their viewers,” the petition reads. “ABC had no problem doing it in other instances, so there should be no difference here.” So far, the petition has amassed over 5,000 signatures, and of course, there’s a counter-petition urging Shonda Rhimes to “stand for Jesse” with almost 20,000 supporters. But guess what: It doesn’t matter! Unlike Brexit, this isn’t a popular referendum on the state of Jackson Avery. Television is not a democracy, and Grey’s Anatomy showrunner and empress of Thursday nights Shonda Rhimes isn’t about to let a petition dictate her creative decisions.
And just so we’re clear, she loved his speech: