Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Henry Paulson

I listen to a lot of NRP podcasts. Regularly I hear them speak of Henry Paulson and I am compelled to shout, "His name is Henry Paulson!" "His name is Henry Paulson!" Yes, it's a Fightclub reference, and I know that it's not even the right name.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Tavis Smiley is a Racist

This has been bugging me for a while now so I thought I'd get it off my chest a little. For a while Tavis Smiley had an NPR show. I listened to it fairly regularly but kept finding myself repulsed by Tavis's separatist attitudes about race. He seemed to believe that the colors shouldn't mix, that blacks should only shop in black owned shops, live in black communities, and go to black only schools. I never heard a message of inclusiveness or sharing from him. Not that empowerment and pride are bad by themselves, but when racial purity and segregation are added to the mix, that is bad.

One day there was a piece on his show (by Tony Cox, if I remember correctly) interviewing a black woman who had written about the fact she wouldn't allow her sons to date white women. If she were a white woman using the language she used about blacks the piece never would have aired or she would have at least been challenged about the hatred and racism she espoused. But not on Tavis Smiley's show. No, she was treated like a thoughtful concerned woman trying to keep her boys unstained by those others. To me she sounded just like the worst KKK momma on earth talking about how her son better not be fucking no niggers. Exactly the same level of contempt, bigotry, and prejudice that can only come from a stupid, racist bitch. But you'd think Tony Cox (or whoever interviewed her) was licking her feet in adoration throughout the piece. It was really repulsive, and not a word was said against her. After that show I turned him off and never listened again.

Flash forward a few months to when Tavis either left the show or was fired. He made an appearance on the local show State of Affairs and began going on about how white NPR is and how he had brought about all these racial improvements. I think the man may be a bit full of himself. Anyway, he went on to say that Michele Norris had been hired because of him though, in his own words, she wasn't "the blackest voice." I'm guessing because she can actually speak clearly and doesn't use ridiculous mispronunciations like Tavis (he pronounces all words that in "-ar" as if he were a pirate) then she's "too white" or "not black enough." Can you say, "Racist?"

Tavis has a weekend show on PRI which I make a point of not listening to. I'm pretty sure he also has a regular show on television as well. Why such a bigot and racist is given two hours a week on public radio is beyond me. It would seem if you are going to give a black racist a regular show you should also give a regular show to a white separatist leader or latino gang leaders or maybe the Chinese mafia. Somehow I think the overly P.C. public broadcasting system puts up with Tavis Smiley because they feel he deserves the right to his opinion... and he does. But what he doesn't deserve is the right to espouse racial purity and economic isolationism.