Next Monday, my two-hour special with Chris Matthews, “Obama’s America: 2010 and Beyond,” airs on MSNBC because in 2010, not only are we still bogged down with the issue of race; we’re still stuck on color! Turn on the news, and everyone is talking about Sen. Harry Reid’s comments about President Barack Obama, saying the then-presidential candidate was light-skinned with no Negro dialect.
The war, unemployment, the lack of a health care bill and security issues haven’t gone away, but right now, the question is should Sen. Reid have to step down from his majority leader post for his words about the president even though the president himself is ready to move on?
In a meeting of my staff yesterday, they went off-course for a moment and examined when and if they could get past race. It began when one of my producers asked when it would be okay for black people to seriously criticize President Obama. The consensus pretty much was right now in private, but publicly never. Most of the people, mostly black and female, felt very passionate about and protective of the president. Not only would they almost always defend him in public, but they couldn’t even bear to hear him being criticized, especially by white people.
Is this a healthy attitude? Maybe not. Will anyone be able to change their thinking? I doubt it. Should anyone try to change it? Probably not.
The reason racism still is on the forefront is because people pretty much feel the way they do and aren’t that interested in changing. If they were, we would have seen much more movement by now.
On the heels of Sen. Reid’s comments came perhaps the dumbest comment ever. Former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich was quoted in Esquire magazine saying “I’m blacker than Barack Obama. I shined shoes. I grew up in a five-room apartment. My father had a little laundromat in a black community not far from where he lived. I saw it all growing up.”
What do you do with that? Where do you start? It’s wrong on so many levels that just telling him it’s wrong and hearing him apologize is a waste of time.
How far have we come on the issue of race? Pretty far. How much farther do we need to go? Pretty far.
But we keep talking about it – and people want to hear us talk about it. Roland Martin made an excellent point this morning on the show and last night on CNN. He said the only time mainstream media wants to talk to black folks is when there’s an issue involving race. I agree. Those same people are available to talk about health care, unemployment, the war – you name it.
I always say I don’t expect mainstream media to do much more than they have to do when it comes to representing African-Americans. That’s what we’re for. The TJMS, BlackAmericaWeb.com, TV One and other black media outlets are where you can always find black people commenting about important issues that are of interest to all people, whether it’s Black History Month or not.
I would be kidding myself to think MSNBC would have asked me to participate in the town hall meeting if we did not have a black president and there was going to be no discussion of race. But as they say, “It is what it is.” My job is to represent you, and that’s why I’ve asked you to send questions and comments – and you’ve answered the call.
This year, the all-important Census 2010 is an opportunity for everyone
Also On Black America Web:
This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (11/26-12/2)
30 photos Launch gallery
1. Little Legend and Puddy 😍😍😍😍
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2. "You on point Phife?" "all the time,Tip". 💥 #bannedfromnormal
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3. Vegan! The Impossible burger at Crossroads
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4. Lawrence #BeforeandAfterEpisodes 1-4: 184lbs 13% body fatEpisode 8: 196lbs 8% body fat S/O @coachdaveboxing with the works outs and @kildareriordan with the nutrition
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5. Jus haaaanngin out
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6. Meanwhile back at home in Atlanta GA someone mad they not on the 🛳. 😳
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7. No limits... Photo cred: Chris Bridges @ludacris
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8. new new
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9. Apparently my 260lbs is too much for the actual vines in the Hawaiian jungles to hold me without breaking and me falling hundreds of feet. So for safety purposes, I'm forced to swing thru #Jumanjj on wires strong enough to hold 12 adult buffaloes and 1 adult Rock. #OnSet #Jumanji #IronicallyIEatBuffaloDailyForLunch #MoreManThanNatureKnowsWhatToDoWith
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10. hey ma! 🎎#wcw 💙
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11. Surprise visit to our factories!!! #GoodAmerican #USA
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13. Peachy Keen 🔥✨⚡️
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14. If this don't look thankful I don't know what does. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. #UltraBlessed #24kMagic #SweetPotatoFly
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15. Late nights @nbcmarlon with the writers... we in here!!!
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16. There goes my baaaaaaaaabbbbyyyyy #QueenKingMagic!!! We're up to something! Ira BIG!!! Stay out our buisness -
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17. You want to win every game you play but when you come home to these faces... who cares. #ILoveYouGirls best part of my day, everyday!
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18. Steady,steady..... full size jenga.. "I got this one "???? Or do I ?
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19. Cornrows kind of day 😉@dontaysavoy2 you convinced me and I love. ❤️️
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20. #BrotherlyLove #tbt
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22. #basel #TeamLOVE @kingcombs
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23. Just introduced a special screening of @directher 's groundbreaking (must see) documentary @13thfilm with my brother @themichaelealy | @unitedblackout #blackoutblackfriday
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24. Me & Vanessa Williams giving #DuckLips #Pose on the set of #DaytimeDivas @vh1 - Coming Soon to a tv near you. Lol. - My make up done by @makeupsurgeon
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25. This picture just makes me wanna praise the Lord, you hear me!!!!!! Yes Lord brotha #TEDDYCAMPBELL What a #man !!! You are everything right on this picture husband ......... #gorgeous #stylish #classy #strong #masculine #king #sexy #debonair #gentlemenstyle And that #bible in your hand just seals the deal for me (probably cause i know that, that is what helped you become just as amazing as you look😘). While my heart and mind experiences the goodness of God at #church on Sundays, my eyes experiences the goodness of Teddy😍. Amen somebody🙌🏽. "Bless the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name" #myman #myhusband #goodman #blackman #dapperman #godlyman #goodfather #mybestfriend
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26. Yesterday was my mama's 53rd birthday!!!!! Got to celebrate with her all day. If this is what I have to look forward to I can't wait. Looking like a soft bucket a cocoa butter. Yaaaaaaaaaas! 😍😍😍 love you mommy!
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27. "Shout out to @PureAtlanta for getting the family right"....I'm loving this jogger. 😍😍
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28. This pic warms my heart ❤️ #myLogiebeans and aunt aunt umba @itowandabraxton 😘
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29. You will always be my baby😜. #HappyBirthdayReginae #mybaby18
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30. GC "Gods Child" Red on Red SweatSuit available now at www.MonicaApparel.com ... Take Your Crown wherever you go!! I'm pictured in a Medium... Go to the site now for other options ... cc: @trukernell
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