"America ain't shit,
Cause the white man's got a god complex"
This line of graffiti, inspired by the title of a spoken word piece by The Last Poets, is scrawled on a wall in a poor, majority-black neighborhood of Washington, D.C. in Hal Ashby's Being There. It is very briefly visible, and it's unclear if it was found or created for production, but it is the most succinct line in the film that essentially functions as its thesis statement.
This is the story of the American white man failing upwards, assisted by a system that cannot help being enamored of him. In other words, a kind of modern-day take on The Emperor's New Clothes. That Forrest Gump—a toothless, cloying imitation…