Monday, November 22, 2010
When it comes to Oprah there has not been as popular, wealthy, and almost cult like followed host who as almost become colorless in American History. You can for a second forget that she is a black woman unless you count that time she tried to get into Hermes bag store in France in 2005 and was denied. And on top of it she did not even bring it up on her show after reports say that they mistaken her as some North African shoplifter. The reason she did bring it up is a long and sorted conversation of brand and touchy racial issues which still permeate the culture.
The most interesting thing is that almost every time someone talks about her they bring up her story, which was very hard and abusive, as a part of her appeal and her success. Her story makes her relatable and her giveaways and brand of living your best life has made her like a religious leader of some sort of cult. Oprah’s power is seen in her impact across any business or industry by mere mention. Her king-making ability of then Senator Barack Obama may have aided in him taking the presidency. As a black man, I respect her as a brilliant businesswomen and arguable the most successful black women in the history of America. Furthermore, as a revolutionary I believe she could do a lot more for the black community in the same way as Obama. Like Obama she inspires young black men and women to be like them. Moreover, because of their power they should do more to tackle the problems of the African American community.
In the Black community there are systemic problems like 18% unemployment, 50% black males in some part of the prison system, 80% in prison and the gaps in education and income. She could also do more with her money and influence to handle at least one of these issues. Instead of opening a school in South Africa she could deal with the horrible schools in Chicago. Oprah and Barack are both from that area however, the schools have high levels of violence and 50% of those children are not graduating. Racism is alive and well when the most powerful Man in the world is black and most powerful woman in show business is also black and neither of them are helping in any significant way to tackle these tuff issues. I have seen myself on Oprah since the day that I became a filmmaker. However, I’m not going to praise her for giveaways and the furthering of her brand. When she gives away half of her wealth to eradicate some major problem, then I will stand up and recognize. If you want to be honest, Oprah is a little out of touch because to her any one can get what ever they want by just working hard. Everyone knows that this is just not true, and if you believe that then you are probably one of those fools who was reading and following the “Secret”. You are probably still waiting for your luxury car that you wrote on the vision board. Oprah would have not gotten where she is with out Roger Ebert putting her in touch with the person who offered her the syndication deal. Beyonce said, “Success is when preparation meets opportunity.” She didn’t say if you write it down and think positive you will get what ever you want. She leaves out her struggle to get where she is and only highlights the plight of her youth because it's more relatable. BE REAL. She has people like JIM JONES. I’m not drinking the Kool-aid. Oprah needs to do more! Until that day, I will admire her and despise her at the same time because being black should never be an incidental thing. It’s a reality.
Posted by Lawrencebcp at 9:05 AM