‘Little House on the Prairie’: How Todd Bridges Felt About White Privilege Scene Resurfacing

There are some series that stands the test of time, Little House on the Prairie is one of them. The show ran for nine seasons on NBC and was the last of its kind from that time period. In addition to the family element, the show was a teachable moment in many episodes, one of which starred Todd Bridges, where his character gives a lesson on white privilege. The clip resurfaced at a crucial time in America last year, and Bridges says it was right on time. 

Little House on the Prairie episode photo; Todd Bridges guest starred on the show where he gave a lesson on white privilege
LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE | NBCU Photo Bank

Todd Bridges’ character gets real about white privilege on ‘Little House on the Prairie’ 

Bridges played the role of Solomon in an episode titled The Wisdom of Solomon. In a clip that surfaced amid the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with the racial unrest as a result of the Black Lives Matter Movement, the clip of Solomon getting real about what it means to be Black in America found its way on social media again and had users buzzing.

Source: YouTube

In the first half of the clip, Miss Beadle (Charlotte Stewart) asks the class to write an essay about the things they do not like the most. Solomon says he dislikes “being a ni—r” the most. He later explains himself to Charles Ingalls (Michael Landon) and notes that if he were white, his father would still be alive. But he shut the whole conversation down with the following exchange:

“Tell me somethin’, sir—would you like to live to be 100?” Solomon asks. Charles responds: “I’m sure I would. It’s not very likely… I guess all of us would like to live to a ripe old age.” Solomon then asks: “Would you rather be black and live to be 100 or white and live to be 50?” Charles leaves the room as a result. 

The actor responds to the resurfaced viral clip

In a recent interview with Shadow and Act to promote his appearance on Celebrity Beef, Bridges notes that he was shocked by the resurfaced clip, but also found it to be timely. Still, he says he hopes it remains a centralized conversation.

Source: YouTube

“I think that a lot of people don’t realize it at all. They don’t get how we have to see life in America. It’s different for us. It just is,” he said. “And if you got to conform to understand it and move forward, are you going to be stuck by it and paralyzed by it? I think that seeing just educated people on the fact that that’s real, I think that’s what it really did it. And I can’t believe on a show like that in the seventies, they actually brought that up. It was pretty amazing for them to bring that up.”

How he feels about a reboot of another classic show he starred in

While the clip put Bridges back in the spotlight, he’ll always be revered for his role on Diff’rent Strokes. The show aired for 8 seasons over the 1970s and 1980s. A reboot was in the works, but Bridges says things halted.

“We were supposed to reboot Diff’rent Strokes, but I don’t know what happened,” he explained. “So right now, it’s in a hole, but hopefully, it’ll come out of it soon. I had a pretty good idea of the way I wanted to reboot it too, which was really great. But we’ll see what happens. We’ll see where it goes forward from there.”

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