The 2009 movie "The Blind Side" became famous for depicting a supposedly warm-hearted white family in Tennessee that adopted a Black teenager and loved him as their own son, before he went on to become an NFL football champion. It earned upwards of $300 million, multiple awards, and critical acclaim for supposedly being so 'inspirational', 'touching', and 'sweet'.
Unsurprisingly, this "gracious white savior" narrative is turning out to be completely false. In actuality
, Michael Oher - the Black athlete depicted in the film - is alleging that this family lied to him, exploited him, and tricked him into signing Conservatorship paperwork that gave them rights over his finances and business deals. Sign the petition to demand the Tennessee legal system end this racist conservatorship, and make the manipulative Tuohys family pay Oher back the money they owe him!
For approximately nine years, Oher believed the Tuohys family when they said they'd adopted him and made him a legal part of their family. Instead, his lawyer recently uncovered documents that seem to show this actually never occurred.
Instead, documents suggest the family manipulated Oher when he was only 18 years old into signing away his future financial and business rights
by making them his conservators -- falsely telling him it was "essentially the same" as becoming his legal parents.
When "The Blind Side" film came out, it earned the Tuohys $900,000 outright (divided four-ways among the two parents and their two biological children), as well as 2.5% of the film's "defined net proceeds." They ultimately earned upwards of 1 million dollars from the film.
Meanwhile, they set Oher up with a family friend to supposedly act as his agent and lawyer -- and he ended up earning nothing.
Conservatorships are a deeply controversial practice that allows one adult's rights to be stripped away and placed entirely in the hands of another person - usually with no way out to reverse the process.Theoretically, conservatorships are only supposed to be undertaken as a last resort in order to safeguard someone who is severely incapacitated.
These scary legal black holes were originally designed for people who were in the final stages of life and death.
As a result, the law never intended for people to be able to fight their way out.
Today, however, many profit- and control-hungry people have managed to coerce otherwise independent, autonomous individuals into conservatorships for the purpose of money. Guardians often have very little incentive to let their "wards" get away -- because they profit immensely off of controlling these individuals' finances and lives.
The story about what the Tuohys did to Michael Oher is quite simple. A white family in the South specifically targeted and used a Black teenager - now a man - to make millions of dollars off of exploiting his story, his life, and his narrative, while locking him out from receiving significant profits.
As Oher's new lawyer has explained: "Mike didn't grow up with a stable family life. When the Tuohy family told Mike they loved him and wanted to adopt him, it filled a void that had been with him his entire life. Discovering that he wasn't actually adopted devastated Mike and wounded him deeply."The legal system in Tennessee must not allow the Tuohy family's racist scam to continue. It must side with Oher and his legal team by ending his conservatorship now and ordering the family to pay him what they owe!