As Black History Month comes and goes, television shows that foster black pride also come and go. I understand that many black men attached their self worth and their manhood to the character Bill Cosby made famous. In retrospect, I do not believe we need to look at television to give us our self worth.
The White House group's agenda was deep--with racial concerns about criminal justice, agriculture, education, health care and economic development when African American leaders met with President Barack Obama last week.
Students (young and older) respond to instruction in the way that is expected of them. If taught as if they are slow, students will conform to that perception. Imagine what would happen if we treated all students, from the earliest years through their post-secondary studies, as if there were geniuses inside, simply waiting for recognition.
The ugly truth is white on white crime does exist. It is a growing pandemic in the white community, and if we don't call attention to this problem soon, there will be no more white people left to run the world.
Fitz is an extremely aggressive individual, and I often get scared watching his interactions with both Mellie and Olivia, but somehow the show still paints him as the victim, the "good guy," and I really don't think it is okay.
Fifty years after the bloody Selma march shocked Johnson and the nation into taking fast track action to right a glaring historic wrong, namely the denial of the right to vote to millions in America, that right is still under intense assault. This is why we still need a Selma today.
Few leaders were more important to and decisive in mobilizing public opinion in support of the march than leaders from the American Jewish community. Ironically, it was this historic coalition that came to mind when I listened to and read the 24/7 media commentary around Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's recent speech to Congress.
The president doesn't "love" America? Would that it were true. Would that the president felt a responsibility to the global future and, at the same time, could summon our real past, grieve for its victims and vow with every fiber of his being to atone for our history of slavery and conquest: the "white terrorism" of manifest destiny. Would that the president didn't "love" our myths.
The people and police officers of Ferguson can ill afford to allow the difficult but necessary reform process that's now underway to be subsumed by petty politics. To plunge headlong into a dialogue defined by the same narrow, reductive, zero-sum talking points that frame so much of our national debate would be an inexcusable mistake.
More often than I would like, I have used this space to decry our shortcomings because we retain and still use capital punishment. This past Sunday, however, marked the 10th anniversary of a high point in our shared history.
Black inequality--inaugurated under slavery and maintained by protean forms of white supremacy--has been central to American society, through to the present day. But where does AIDS fit into this story?
In this documentary, Owino and Washington had 14 people brave enough to sit in the room with each other and talk candidly about their cultural and internal racial differences. "That is a great start... but we need more," Owino admits.
We cannot stay complacent or silent in the face of restrictive voting laws. The best way for us to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of Selma is to recreate the energy that forced Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act in the first place.
During the time she co-developed the idea, Graves was the chief creative director at the now defunct agency Vigilante. In her role she wanted to spotlight the achievements of young men of color--something she felt was not prevalent in the mainstream.
Over the course of the weekend, Steve Harvey's name became a trending topic after a series of YouTube videos surfaced of his ex-wife, Mary Shackelford Harvey, making shocking claims against the King of Comedy.
In the viral videos, Harvey's former spouse alleges that her ex-husband was a serial cheater and left her with nothing, including custody of their 15-year-old son Wynton following their 2005 divorce.
"He turned my son against me, had me evicted from our house," she said. "I woke up and everything was gone."
So what's all the talk about six years later?
According to People, Shackleford says Harvey is currently suing her in Texas, which is why she is now speaking up. "In Steve's opinion, I was responsible when Oprah [Winfrey] did not give him a TV show," she shared. "I'm being sued for that. That is why I'm saying what I have to say."
Harvey's lawyer, Bobbie Edmonds, released a statement in response, saying they were "appalled and aware of the videos and other fabricated documents."
According to Edmonds, the videos "contained false, misleading, derogatory, disparaging, malicious, explicit and slanderous information," which led them to be "saddened" that Mary "has resorted to such devious and selfish behavior, with a reckless disregard for their minor son, her adult son and Mr. Harvey's other children."
He asserted that there are "court orders and permanent injunctions which prohibit either party from discussing and releasing information [about the marriage and divorce] on the Internet and to the media."
"We are taking the necessary legal steps to rectify this matter to the full extent of the law," he assured, "and we will be seeking contempt and sanctions against her for such reprehensible and callous disregard for the court orders.
"Mr. Harvey cannot personally respond to these assertions, documents and videos due to the existing court gag orders," the attorney concluded.
But the burgeoning media darling took to the radio airwaves this morning (Jan. 24) during a segment on his nationally syndicated radio program, 'The Steve Harvey Show,' to clear up any misconceptions. The show shared the taping exclusively with BlackVoices.com:
"I know the truth," declared Harvey to his listening audience. "But the matter is, the part that's hurtful in this is my wife and children had to be drugged [sic] into this. If you're going to be vindictive go ahead and aim it at me, but my son is coming in the room crying. And that's also her son. So why would you do this?
"And I don't even understand the purpose of it," he continued. "I mean, I got you mad 12 years ago, that's what we're doing now? And here's the thing that my father always taught me. He said, 'Son there's three sides to every story. It's their side, it's your side, and it's the truth.' And the truth 'gon come out. Because see, once you go public then you allow people to start asking some other types of questions.
"So, I'm just more concerned about my son, who I happen to have total custody of, rights to all education and everything. He's with us on the ship today. And he doesn't deserve to have to answer questions like this from his friends. And it's just being inconsiderate of your own child.
"A lot of it is lies, but ... a lot of celebrities get dogged out and pitched about and then there's no repercussions behind the person who's doing the pitching," Harvey lamented on the airwaves.
"Here's my job as a father to my son, I have taught him to be respectful of his mother and women overall. That's what I've taught him. What he can't do is see me going out making particular accusations and rants. It is still his mother and I'm his father," he continued. "And it's my job to raise him the right way. If I have custody of the child, which you have to wonder how that happened, then my job is to teach him by example. And he's crying through this whole thing because his friends called and his sister found it on the Internet at the same time. And it's just horrible. But it is what it is, I'm good. I appreciate all the support ... the people that's going to hate you they're just looking for something to hate you for anyway. You could do me all you want, I don't care what you say about me. But my wife and kids are off limits, I tell people all the time."
The multimedia personality went on to express his thoughts on his ex-wife's motives for bringing the accusations to light. "I mean it's simple, she's just keeping a promise that they made. 'I'm going to divorce you and I'm going to ruin you,'" he stated, referring to what some spurned spouses say during a divorce. "That's the promise that was made. ... But, Wynton's with us and he's doing well. If you want to pray for us then pray for Wynton. But things will be dealt with in the proper fashion this time. This time it'll get dealt with in the proper fashion."
Famous, Black & Funny
Being funny comes as a natural gift for man – but only the really talented (and really daring) ones have answered the call to make the masses laugh with their comedy. The wild and crazy Tracy Morgan, the much heralded Whoopi Goldberg, the brassy Mo'Nique and the late, great Richard Pryor are just a few of the black, famous and funny people who made us laugh over the last 50 years. There are many more. And they all have stories behind the funny. Check out who they are and what they've done.
Famous, Black & Funny Martin Lawrence Started Out: Making an appearance on the national talent show 'Star Search,' which ultimately led to a gig on 'What's Happening Now!' Big Break: Hosting the groundbreaking comedy series 'Def Comedy Jam.' Hometown: Landover, Md. Also Was Seen: In the films 'Do the Right Thing,' 'House Party,' 'Boomerang,' 'Bad Boys,' 'Thin Line Between Love & Hate' and 'Big Momma's House.' In addition, he starred and executive-produced his own Fox sitcom 'Martin' for five seasons. Factoid: In 1989, Lawrence was engaged to 'Saved by the Bell' actress Lark Voorhies.
Famous, Black & Funny Steve Harvey Started Out: Began doing stand-up in the mid-1980s and was a finalist in the second annual Johnnie Walker National Comedy Search in 1989. Big Break: Hosting the nationally syndicated TV series 'Showtime at the Apollo.' Hometown: Welch, W. Va. Also Was Seen: On the series 'Me and the Boys' and his eponymous sitcom. Also appeared in the movies 'Love Don't Cost A Thing,' 'The Original Kings of Comedy' and 'The Fighting Temptations.' Factoid: Born in 1957, Harvey (real name: Broderick Steven Harvey) made his literary debut with the New York Times best-selling relationship/advice book 'Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man,' in 2009.
Famous, Black & Funny Wanda Sykes Started Out: Began her stand-up career at a Coors Light Super Talent Showcase in Washington, D.C. Big Break: Played multiple roles on Chris Rock's Emmy Award-winning HBO show. Hometown: Portsmouth, Va. Also Was Seen: In the movies 'Monster-in-Law' and 'Pooty Tang' and on the TV shows 'Wanda At Large,' 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' and 'The New Adventures of Old Christine.' Factoid: During a Las Vegas gay rights rally in November 2008, Sykes proclaimed she was "proud to be gay."
Famous, Black & Funny Jamie Foxx Started Out: Acting on a dare (from a girlfriend) and competing in an open-mic contest at a comedy club in 1989. Big Break: Playing the comely date-challenged Wanda on 'In Living Color' Hometown: Linden, Texas Also Was Seen: In the films 'Booty Call,' 'The Players Club,' 'Any Given Sunday,' 'Miami Vice,' 'Ali' and 'Ray,' for which he won an Academy Award for best actor in 2005. Also fronted his eponymous sitcom. Factoid: As of 2009, Foxx (real name: Eric Marlon Bishop) has released three music albums: 1994's 'Peep This,' 2005's 'Unpredictable' and 2008's 'Intuition.'
Famous, Black & Funny Tracy Morgan Started Out: Appearing on the sitcom 'Martin,' where he played 'Hustle Man.' Big Break: Morgan's claim to fame came in 1996 when he began appearing on 'Saturday Night Live.' Hometown: New York City Also Was Seen: In 'A Thin Line Between Love and Hate,' 'Martin,' 'Half Baked,' 'How High,' 'Head of State,' 'The Tracey Morgan Show,' 'Little Man,' 'First Sunday' and '30 Rock.' Factoid: Andrew Dice Clay inspired Morgan to pursue comedy.
Famous, Black & Funny Chris Rock Started Out: Doing stand-up comedy in 1985 in New York City's Catch a Rising Star Comedy Club. Big Break: Was a cast member of the popular sketch comedy series 'Saturday Night Live.' Hometown: New York City Also Was Seen: In the movie 'New Jack City,' where he played a crackhead informant. Factoid: Born in 1965, Rock won a Grammy for best spoken comedy album in 1999 for the project 'Bigger & Blacker.'
Famous, Black & Funny Mo'Nique Started Out: Appearing at the downtown Baltimore Comedy Factory Outlet. Big Break: Starred on the hit UPN sitcom 'The Parkers.' Hometown: Baltimore Also Was Seen: In 'Three Can Play That Game,' 'Hair Show' and 'Shadowboxer.' Factoid: Born in 1967, Mo'Nique (real name: Monique Imes) is the author of 'Skinny Women are Evil: Notes of a Big Girl in a Small-Minded World' and the cookbook 'Skinny Cooks Can't Be Trusted.'
Famous, Black & Funny Eddie Griffith Started Out: Griffith began his acting career the 1991 action-thriller 'The Last Boy Scout.' Big Break: In 1996, Griffith showcased his talent on a national scale when he landed the role of Eddie on the TV series 'Malcolm & Eddie.' Hometown: Kansas City, Mo. Also Was Seen: In 'Foolish,' 'Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo' and 'Undercover Brother.' Factoid: Suffered a heart attack in 1996 while taping an episode of 'Malcolm & Eddie' following a scene in which he did the salsa dance.
Famous, Black & Funny Bill Cosby Started Out: While in his early twenties, Cosby appeared on various well-known variety programs including 'The Ed Sullivan Show.' Big Break: In 1965, he appeared as Alexander Scott in the Emmy Award-winning flick 'I Spy.' Hometown: Philadelphia Also Was Seen: In 'Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids,' 'Uptown Saturday Night,' 'Let's Do it Again,' 'Ghost Dad,' 'The Meteor Man' and the groundbreaking NBC sitcom 'The Cosby Show.' Factoid: Beginning in 1965, Cosby scored the Grammy Award for best comedy album six years in a row.
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