Mindy Kaling‘s impressive, hater-baiting success as the first Indian American person to write and star in her own network sitcom is a step forward for a variety of reasons. It broadens the female beauty ideal represented on television, it shows an Indian character in a non-stereotypical way, and, maybe most importantly, it’s helping to bring about a world in which Indian people no longer have to pretend to like all prominent Indian people just because they’re Indian.
This last one is important, comedian Hari Kondabolu explains, because when he was growing up, the only person on TV who looked like him was The Simpsons‘ Apu, a Hank Azaria-voiced character who sounded like “a white guy doing an impression of a white guy making fun of my father.” (I love The Simpsons, but this is kind of true.)
Other people he no longer has to pretend to like include Bobby Jindal (the Republican governor of Louisiana),
Dinesh D’Souza (the guy behind that insane full-length political attack ad 2016: Obama’s America), and the actors who agreed to be in that super-racist Metro PCS commercial.
Thanks to people like Mindy Kaling, he is now free to talk shit on all of those assholes. Progress!