300 Was Not Racist! Zack Synder has nothing to apologize for! sign now

This petition is to protect one of America's essential rights: freedom of speech. There is a petition, and there is a possibility of other petitions I am not aware of, stating that Zack Synder, film director, Warner Brothers Pictures, a film company, and anyone affiliated with the movie 300 must make a public apology for being, and I quote from the petition "irresponsible, unethical and unscientific" in the making of the movie 300. 300 is based on the five-part graphic novel by Frank Miller, colored by Lynn Varley, relating the Battle of Thermopylae.


Historically, the battle, taking place in 480 BC in the mountain pass of Thermopylae in central Greece, was a fight to halt the advance of the then gigantic Persian Empire into Greece. It was fought by 300 Spartans and about 7000 other free Greeks, including Thebans, Thespians, and Helots, commanded by King Leonidas. The Persians, whose numbers ranged from 60,000-300,000 (the exact number varies on the sources; all that is constant is that is was far more vast than the puny 7,300 Greeks and contained all 10,000 of the Persian fighting elite, also known as the Immortals) were commanded by the king of the empire, King Xerxes. The Greeks valiantly fought off wave after wave of Persian assualt, but were defeated when a traitor, Ephialtes, led the Persian army around to the rear of the Greek lines via a secret mountain path. Leonidas dismissed all but 2,000 of his troops. Among these were his trusted 300 Spartans. Leonidas and his troops were defeated in one of his history's most famous last stands.


Now, people have a problem of the movie's representation of this battle for one main reason: it is racist against Persians. The argument is that Synder delibratley decided to be racist and create a false image of Persian culture that was savage, barbaric, and sexually flamboyant. Some of this is mildly true, admittedly, but the exaggerations were used only to emphasize that the Persians were the bad guys of the film. Also, the argument states that this degradation of Persians is also coupled with an extreme exaggeration of Spartan valor and masculinity. Now, I don't know any Spartans, but do know their history: brutal, born to kill, rigorously trained from boyhood to be, to quote the movie "the finest fighters the world has ever known". From these proven historical facts, it is safe to assume they lived by a strict code of honor and were very strong, able-bodied men. Whether the movie exaggerates this or not, the simple fact remains that while making art, it is the artists call to portray people as he or she sees fit. A movie cannot does not have to be 100\% historically accurate.


In conclusion, the issue remains as this: it might have been historically accurate or not. Leave that for historians. Was it racist? Absolutley not. It clearly defined good and bad guys. If someone saw the movie and had no idea which side to root for, most of the scenes, lines, and themes would have lost their meaning and value. Movies are entertainment. This movie was entertaining. If you don't like the themes, don't see it. But above all, the First Amendment protects all forms of free speech, so if Zack Synder wanted to make the Persians three-heading centaurs with laser rifles that spoke Japanese, the Constitution said he could. That's the beauty of art that should never, ever, be lost. Zack, don't apologize. You don't have to.





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Harriett DickersonBy:
Technology and the InternetIn:
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Petitioners Against the Motion Picture 300

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