San Diegans push for diversity at Academy Awards - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

San Diegans push for diversity at Academy Awards

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - A group of protesters from San Diego are taking part in the protest at the Oscars Sunday evening.

"When they present the award tonight, they ought to present them as they are. As the white Oscars," said Al Sharpton.

Al Sharpton has called for a push for diversity within the Academy Awards.

RELATED: As protests swirl, Oscars have feel of high-stakes showdown

"The Oscars would have meant everyone would have participated and everyone would have fairly participated in the awards,” said Sharpton.

In San Diego, Sharpton met with dozens of supporters to kick off the San Diego chapter of his National Action Network.

"It's wicked to look at movies and exclude them from the Academy Awards,” said Sharpton.

Continuing the push for a more inclusive Academy, San Diegans took to the streets and boarded a bus to Hollywood to join Sharpton in a boycott of this year’s Oscar's.

"I'm seeing more people get involved and that's what makes this time different than all the other times. More people are getting involved all over the country. Actors and actresses are getting involved," said Rev. Shane Harries, President of National Action Network. "I think people are now starting to see that we have to do something about this. Not just protest the Oscar's but strategize with actors and actresses who have impact in Hollywood."

Suzy Gilleon heard Sharpton speak Saturday night and felt she and her son Evan should get involved to spread the word about broadening the Academy Award nominees to people of all races.

"I'm not sure whether the Black community has been deliberately ignored in the last two years, but I know that they haven't been in the front place for the Oscar's and haven't been nominated. I'd like to know why," said Gilleon.

Gilleon says this will be her first protest.

"It’s grass roots. It's one small step and baby steps all the way there," said Gilleon.

Protests like the one taking place in Hollywood are also happening across the country in cities like Detroit, Atlanta, New York and Cleveland outside ABC stations.

"Hopefully next year we can have Oscars. Not the white Oscars," said Sharpton.

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