From: Bruce Ford, Shoreline, WA
What I find most intriguing about not only your column, but the upset of "Crash" over "Brokeback Mountain," is the irony of the win, as you claim, based upon "Crash"'s message. Despite how liberal and open-minded many people are, or think they are, they can still behave awfully in certain situations. Why are you not able to concede that some of those voting for "Crash" were in actuality voting against "Brokeback Mountain"? That is what "Crash"'s itself would say, wouldn't it?
Certainly "Crash" was not the worst film of the year. It was however, far from the best to a majority of people outside of the L.A.-centric Academy. You certainly can concede that most of the world, including directors, writers, producers and critics chose "Brokeback Mountain" as the best film of the year, and likely not for its' subject matter. Although the film has weaknesses (as every film does), it is still not only a milestone, but a timeless subject that everyone can gleam something from, if they are willing to look beyond its' two main characters homosexuality. Not very often (before the Oscars) was "Crash" cited as the film of the year.
Although members of the academy do not screen all the nominations, ethically they should. Otherwise they are uninformed. Unlike a political vote, which is a choice, here, artists are entrusted to weigh art against art. Apparently many members of the Academy chose to not be impartial. Maybe you are right and this happens every year, however, it is very likely that it happened more with "Brokeback Mountain," as Tony Curtis' comments [about not wanting to see "Brokeback"] exemplify....
As the tagline of the movie Crash explains, "You think you know who you are. You have no idea." Why can't you and other supporters of Crash be open minded as much about sexuality as you are about race to concede that some of Crash's supporters have no idea, or choose to not consider who they really are? As another reviewer said, maybe by losing, "Brokeback Mountain" is really winning.
Far off into the future, folks may remember the message of an footnote movie from 2005 called "Crash" while watching an amazing, eternal film about the human condition, coincidentally personified through its two gay main characters.