Re: Why I Wrote A Mad Men Episode With Negroes, by Erika Alexander
There really is no reason why they couldn't do a story about Don (the secretary) if they wanted to. It doesn't require the series to present SDPC any more tolerantly than it does, but this occurs to me as one particularly obvious point of entry that Mad Men could have an episode that brought in more black characters - Don's home life, her relationships, friends, family, etc.
First: It's Dawn, not Don.
But, beyond that, can't we give Matt Weiner the benefit of the doubt in assuming that this was a deliberate choice with no malicious intent? The series begins in March of 1960, it's more 50's than 60's. By season 6 we're into 1968, SCDP has a woman partner, no one bats an eye at a woman on Don's creative team, Roger has married -and divorced- a Jewish woman, and Don has an African American secretary. These are great changes, and remarkable when one goes back to watch the early episodes, but they wouldn't have been nearly so significant if Matt Weiner had chosen to portray the office as more diverse from the start.
Travel's fatal to prejudice, bigotry, narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things can't be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's life.