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To casual listeners, Anybody Wanna Buy a Heart? may sound like a total detour for K. Michelle. Such a verdict means one of two things: You haven’t been listening to K. Michelle very long, or if you have, you haven’t been paying close enough attention. As lovingly brash and vulgar as K. Michelle is, she’s always offered hints that she can be subtle. There are differences in terms of sound and tone, but ultimately, this is K. Michelle giving her softer side equal time.

The album does begin with some familiar terrain: K. Michelle singing about people being upset with her for saying the things they’re only thinking, and fuck them for that because only God can judge her.

Even if the subject matter seems standard (defiantly defensive), the theatrics of “Judge Me” make it the perfect opener. Its follow-up and the album’s first single, “Love ’Em All” remains equally the best introduction to the K. Michelle of 2014. Is a misandrist response to Chris Brown’s misogynistic “Loyal” sort of tit-for-tat? Maybe, though for years now R&B men have demeaned women in a genre traditionally about lifting them up in love. Who can blame K. Michelle for yelling a fuck you right back?

There is also noticeable bite in “Cry” as K. Michelle sings, “Feels so damn good to be cold, and I don’t even care if you know,” but it’s very much a country music-esque kiss-off. The other country-inspired standout, “God I Get It,” sounds like something the Country Music Awards would adore. Then again, Lionel Richie had a commercially successful country album and well…never mind.

When it comes to other new terrain for the Memphis native, one of my favorites is “Something About the Night.” Whereas many of her contemporaries are now chasing the goodness that is 1990sR&B, K. Michelle ventures back to some of the funk-lite fun of even earlier decades. K. Michelle said Anita Baker raved about when the legendary vocalist visited her during the recording of this album. I wonder if “Something About the Night” was the song she gushed about most. In my mind, Anita poured herself a glass of K.’s preferred brand of brown liquor and told her, “Gon’ and scat at this part, baby.”

Or maybe Anita’s favorite is the AWBAH’s second single, “Maybe Should I Call.” K. Michelle confirmed that the song, and the album at large, is about her past relationship with Idris Elba, but such a tidbit is trivial. What matters is that it is one of the strongest R&B singles released this year. Equally breathtaking is the J.U.S.T.I.C.E. League-produced “Miss You, Goodbye,” a song that showcases how much more fluid a vocalist K. Michelle is.

Read the rest at Complex.

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For those wondering why the second half of the Love & Hip Hop Hollywood reunion was dumped on Tuesday night as opposed to being stretched out for multiple weeks per the franchise’s usual, the answer is now clear: there wasn’t a whole lot to see.

So much happened during the season’s 12 episodes, but for one reason or another, the cast doesn’t have a whole lot to say about it. Yes, Omarion and Apryl had some contention in their relationship due to his mother’s antics, but that’s done now and they seem to have reached an accord to let that beef die. Frankly, it’s a testament to the maturity of Omarion. He’s the only known person to enter this franchise and come out completely clean. Then again, if he can survive Chris Stokes, what’s a Negro telenovela to him?

Like Omarion, Soulja Boy and Nia have had one hell of a rollercoaster with their relationship, which includes him finding out via social media—where the man truly lives—that Nia’s dad, Teddy Riley, isn’t her biological father, but like Omarion and co., none of them went into any real detail. They’re “good” now according to Nia, or, at the very least, were good the day of the taping. Soulja Boy isn’t as mature as Omarion, but he’s not completely lost the way Ray J and Yung Berg are.

Without those two offering much, much of what we were left with in the conclusion of this show’s first season were the same loud people arguing over the exact same things the day before. Well, Yung Berg did add a few new accusations. Like, him accusing Teairra Mari of giving him head in a back alley. That little fairytale was delivered via Princess, who I wish remained mute because she was never a big deal on this show and it should’ve stayed that way on its reunion specials.

Honestly, I don’t believe Teairra Mari would ever give Berg that much satisfaction. He’s an awful little Leprechaun who needs to go seek therapy to rid himself of whatever root issue has caused him to behave like such a fucking human being. This accusation did once again make Hazel E cry over Yung Berg. I really don’t know what to say about this woman other than lift her up in prayer, y’all. She’s so far gone over someone she admittedly feels is a self-involved, small dick-having sum’bitch. If you already believe this to be true, why offer anymore tears?

Better yet, why be so quick to believe a man you’ve also long felt to be a liar?

Berg has since been fired from the show for allegedly attacking his girlfriend, Masika, but I will note that Teairra Mari could probably take out the entire security team VH1 hired, so you best watch your tiny self, Berg. Detroit people don’t take kind to being tried. That said, “My head is good, baby!” was a wonderful declaration. Incorporate that into a future song, Teairra. Also: Get the fuck off this show.

We did get a little bit of Fizz and his baby mama, Moniece, along with Fizz’s now ex-girlfriend, Amanda. Moniece seems so many steps away from sanity, but dear God, is she ever hilarious. Long live Moniece for declaring: “I’m beautiful. I’m gorgeous. I’m funny as shit.”

Now, let’s get to this show’s biggest tragedies.

Again, Ray J is a terrible person. Terrible people are so often consumed with “loyalty” and the notion of people never bringing any “negativity” to them. This is awful person speak for, “I want people around me who won’t hold me accountable for my actions.”

Princess is the perfect match for him in this respect because she’s literally just here for the status and credit card statements she doesn’t have to pay. At one point, during an argument, with his former assistant, Morgan, Ray J instructs Princess to knock Morgan out. What does Princess do? Gets up and swings on Morgan.

Your name is Princess, but you’re acting like someone’s attack dog. In front of a studio audience for a program recorded on national television.

Read the rest at Complex.

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The shade was thick from the very beginning of the Love & Hip Hop Hollywood reunion as host and LHH executive producer Mona Scott-Young noted that nearly everyone on the cast exchanged bodily fluids. No one is surprised by this, but damn, how incestuous. Shout out to gonorrhea.

That revelation brought on the first question—aimed squarely at Hazel E—and subsequently Yung Berg throwing the first dagger. As soon as Hazel mentioned “girl code,” Berg immediately pounced on her by reminding her that once upon a time, she slept with Ray J. Hazel didn’t deny it, explaining that happened back when she was in college and Teairra Mari knew about it. So, that’s not a violation of girl code really, Berg, but it is further confirmation that you’re an asshole who takes too much joy in humiliating women—especially women named Hazel E.

After that exchange came the segment about Ray J and Teairra’s relationship where Ray J admitted that Teairra was not in fact “delusional” about their “off and on relationship” of eight years. For a few minutes there, Ray J sounded as if he had matured from the juvenile antics he displayed throughout this show’s inaugural season. Hardy har.

Once Ray J’s girlfriend, Princess, hit the stage, it was pretty clear that Ray is very much the villain he portrayed for months on TV. Princess hit the stage and turned immediately to Morgan to say, “What’s up? Fake ass ho.” Your name may be Princess, beloved, but you are not the Puerto Rican Princess, Joseline Hernandez, baby. We don’t need you recycling her genius.

Minutes later Princess and Teairra had a war of words that included Princess claiming Teairra Mari choked on Yung Berg’s dick in a back alley. Why do people on this show upset Teairra Mari knowing those hands were made for cracking skulls and defying the hands of security teams? Princess, you can’t even take on a pool, so you definitely don’t want it with Detroit’s angriest. 

During the exchange, Mona tells Teairra, “So now you’re going to have to be babysat by security because I can’t trust you to not get up?” Has she watched the show she produces? You know what? Never mind. 

Point is, Princess used to date Floyd Mayweather, now she dates Ray J, and despite him tossing her into the pool—which everyone strangely laughed at last night, FYI—she says she’s committed to him no matter what he does. Even Mona looked at Princess like, “Say, word?” Some call it love. I say it’s American Express, PIN numbers, rent paid, all of the Instagram dresses and the designer bags they thotly pair them with.

The next moment of truth was for Hazel E and her debasing herself for Yung Berg all season long. Although the segment was more about Hazel E and Berg, Masika involved herself more than anyone else. LHHH is full of so many characters that are absolutely worthy of hatred. Like, more than any other reality show I can think of, which says so much.

Berg tops the list more than anyone, but Masika is a close second.

At one point, Hazel told Berg, “You’re the one who told me that Masika was an escort.” 

Listen, I can’t stand Masika, and to be quite honest, if you told me Masika let President Obama and Young Thug run a train on her at the same damn time, I’d be inclined to believe you. Masika gives “Karrine Steffans, but with much lower credits.” She, too, revels a bit too much in another woman’s humiliation. No wonder she and Berg remain a couple (however, I need her to go watch Eve’s “Love Is Blind” video pronto).

For some reason, though, that club promoter Sincere was on stage. He insulted Hazel, too, quipping he didn’t understand why Berg ever bothered with Hazel with so many other, “young, beautiful women around.” This man said this as he dressed like some old black pimp from 1973 en route to prom. I’m pretty sure he was the oldest man on stage to boot.

Eventually, Berg and Hazel had their own back-and-forth. Berg said he inserted himself in every hole she had. In response, Hazel said his dick was small enough to fit in her nostrils. Mona rightly then inserted herself, wondering if Berg’s dick was so tiny and unsatisfying, why did you make such a big deal about it all season long? 

Read the rest at Complex.

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Charles Barkley is about as qualified to speak on race as LeBron James is to be Sophia Vergara’sstunt double; as ready as singer K. Michelle is to be U.S. ambassador to Kazakhstan; as Ben Carson is ready to be president. Unfortunately, none of that matters to U.S. media. All that matters is Charles Barkley is 1) famous, and 2), a Black man willing to articulate the sentiment of your average white male conservative who may or may not sound more like a typical white supremacist. So when asked to opine on the latest musings of the former NBA player turned sports analyst and race scholar, I instantly had a greater appreciation for day drinkers.

In response to a radio interview in which he claimed that those who torched buildings in anger in Ferguson are “scumbags,” Sir Charles did yet another interview with CNN’s Brooke Baldwin. There, Barkley argued yet another falsehood: That white cops are not out to shoot Black people because of racism.

First, Barkley explained, “We never discuss race in this country until something bad happens.” He is a Black man and son of the south. When has their ever been a time when America was not bad in terms of its treatment of Black people?

In any event, Barkley added, “Everybody wants to protect their own tribe, whether they are right or wrong.” I imagine this is the part where I’m supposed to feel sad and cue “Why Can’t We Be Friends?” in my head. Pass.

Then Barkley proceeds to prove he is Bill Cosby’s understudy by condemning his own people for the amusement of others:

“We as Black people, we have a lot of crooks. We can’t just wait until something like (the Brown shooting) happens. We have to look at ourselves in the mirror. There is a reason that they racially profile us in the way they do. Sometimes it is wrong, and sometimes it is right.”

Well, there are crooks in every community, only some are prosecuted at higher rates than others. See: white collar criminals, those who brought this country to its knees on Wall Street, and any other crook you can think of that’s white.

Also, there is a reason why Black people are racially profiled: It’s called racism. It’s never right and it’s usually misguided.

If one is serious about solving crime – particularly in poorer communities – treating people as subhuman is not the solution; rather, it is another symptom of what seems to be an incurable disease in America.

Investing in communities is the answer. Having police who actually care about the communities they are policing is another. What Charles Barkley is saying is a bunch of nonsense that only makes sense to him and others who are out of touch –antiquated view-holding somebodies who ought to be quiet and let more informed people speak instead.

Read the rest at NewsOne.

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We have reached the end of the inaugural season of Love & Hip Hop Hollywood and all I have are questions. Maybe they’ll be settled at the reunion, but since I’m not hosting, I doubt it. So I’ll just use this space here. Please tweet the cast this link, y’all, ‘cause I have to know some things.

My first question is for Masika: Why are you such a mean-ass bitch?

If you feel that question is gendered replace “bitch” with “asshole.” Regardless, you are fucking evil, Masika, and I really want to know why. My follow up question is, “Do I need to call Iyanla to fix you?” Or better yet, Snoop Dogg, since he’s become the Dr. Phil of this franchise.

Seeing as how Hazel E is psychotic over Yung Berg, Masika didn’t have to rub it in her face that she’s screwing Hazel’s imaginary boyfriend. Masika takes pleasure in other women’s humiliation. If Disney ever produces an animated movie calledThe Thots of Terror, I recommend Masika play the evil empress of Thotville.

Moving on to other terrible people, my next question is for Nia: What is wrong with you?

After Nia and her daughter were involved in a car accident, Soulja Boy rushed to be by her side. It takes a near-death experience for Soulja Boy to show he cares. Apparently, Nia having a miscarriage with the child they conceived wasn’t enough. At one point, Nia says, in the confessional, “That’s the man I love and I MIGHT spend the rest of my life with.”

Woman, get a grip.

When a man blocks you on Instagram after you have a miscarriage, no matter what he does after that, you’ve got to run away from him as opposed to what you did: get his name tattooed on your neck.

In Fizz’s case, he has no choice but to deal with Moniece because he made a baby with her. The two met at the beach to talk. Moniece described the scene as “romantic.” She would, as she is pinning for Fizz to take her crazy ass back. Yo, if Moniece ever turned out to be a serial killer, I would not be surprised. Wait, let me shut up before she makes me target practice.

In any event, Fizz calmly expressed his concerns to Moniece and stressed the need for them to co-parent in peace. Fizz realizes that he’s stuck with this woman for at least another decade so he may as well suck it up and try to get along with her. Doing so will help stop her from spreading alleged lies about him “in the blogs,” and you know, probably stabbing him in his sleep while wearing a wedding gown.

Now, I do have a question for Fizz: Why are you still rapping?

I mean, the verse I heard in the studio wasn’t bad, but I’m surprised he hasn’t tried acting. No, those B2K movies don’t count. I mean, he should go be the blue collar, light skinned savior in a Tyler Perry movie.

Read the rest at Complex.

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As well intentioned as he may be and as inspiring a figure as many rightfully find him, Pharrell is not equipped to share any meaningful thoughts on racial politics. His latest offense comes from his interview with EBONY magazine. Though the interview took place before Darren Wilson was given in a free pass to shoot an unarmed Black man, Pharrell played into the very sort of stereotypes and irrelevant arguments that others have used to excuse Michael Brown’s execution.

Speaking on the convenience store surveillance video allegedly showing Brown shoplifting cigars –Pharrell said, “It looked very bullyish; that in itself I had a problem with. Not with the kid, but with whatever happened in his life for him to arrive at a place where that behavior is OK. Why aren’t we talking about that?”

I know that these days Pharrell fancies himself as some sort of hip-hop Yoda, but need I remind you, sir, that you are the same person behind songs like Noreaga’s “Superthug.” You lent your production talents to the walking Crip billboard — Snoop Dogg, the ex-drug dealer (who won’t stop rhyming about it) Jay Z, and the repeat offender and real-life G.I. Joe character T.I., as well as many other rappers who have helped shape the very culture you’ve profited from but are now condemning.

Pharrell did go on to add that he believes that Darren Wilson still deserved punishment given he used “excessive force on a human being who was merely a child.” However, Pharrell continues to blame the victim when he further argues: “The boy was walking in the middle of the street when the police supposedly told him to ‘get the f–k on the sidewalk.’ If you don’t listen to that, after just having pushed a storeowner, you’re asking for trouble. But you’re not asking to be killed. Some of these youth feel hunted and preyed upon, and that’s why that officer needs to be punished.”

How about an officer of the law shouldn’t be telling citizens to “get the fuck on the sidewalk?” The harsh reality is that even if Michael Brown was walking on the sidewalk, he still might’ve fallen victim to Darren Wilson or come other officer like him, given law enforcement’s collective fear and profiling of Black men?

Trayvon Martin was minding his damn business when fake cop, but clearly into the ways of the po-lice George Zimmerman virtually stalked him upon sight? When white people feel like a Black man or Black woman does not belong where they are, this is what happens. So as much as Michael Brown’s manners might matter to Pharrell, to answer the question “Why aren’t we talking about that?” it’s because it truly doesn’t matter much on why he loss his life.

Read the rest at theGrio.

 

 

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Now that he’s gotten away with fatally shooting the unarmed Black teenager Michael Brown, Darren Wilson has started to step out in order to tell “his side of the story.” Similarly, other public figures are doing their part to ultimately assist Wilson in the shared goal of humanizing him. It’s an exercise in futility.

In a single interview Darren Wilson appears no less the monster many of us have pegged him to be, based on his actions and the ridiculous testimony he gave the grand jury in defense of it. If anything, we’re only more angered by the defiance he continued to display in his interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos.

Wilson disparages the area where he shot Michael Brown and let his dead body rot in the streets for several hours for residents to see yet assures Stephanopoulous that there is no racial bias, arguing “Ferguson loves Ferguson.” There is no remorse for what he did as he explains that when it comes to the federal investigation into his actions, “I stand by what I did. I stand by my training, and just have to wait and see what they determine.”

Darren Wilson’s lawyers also make clear that he will not apologize to Michael Brown’s family. One member of his four-person legal team, James Towey, argued to The Washington Post, “Even if he gave the most heartfelt apology, they’d still not like it.” Maybe not, but an attempt to make an act of contrition is a testament to one’s character.

The entire scope of the article is to make us feel bad for Darren Wilson’s life following him ending the life of Michael Brown. He can no longer be a cop. He has become “the poster child for bad race relations.” He lives in hiding.

Boo hoo, blah, blah, I don’t give a damn.

At least he’s alive. He’s married, he’s got a baby on the way, and he’s secured both a nice retirement package and in excess of a million dollars from donations. People have rewarded him for taking the life of an unarmed Black teenager.

And thanks to one biased special prosecutor and his team of police-loving, equally morally bankrupt flunkies, Darren Wilson won’t even be charged for his crimes in the state of Missouri.

Forgive me if it’s hard to feel sorry for him.

Read more at NewsOne.

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It was a bit difficult to focus on last night’s episode of Love & Hip Hop Hollywoodgiven the show aired only an hour before many of us would find ourselves distraught and angered after a smug, condescending prosecutor informed us that Darren Wilson would not be indicted for taking the life of the unarmed Michael Brown. If nothing else, though, the show was a distraction, and after watching it again this morning to really take it in, I’m ready to unleash.

I don’t know who is responsible for the sad state of affairs that is Soulja Boy’s emotional health, but hopefully he learns to communicate his feelings beyond blocking your boo thang on social media. Nia, perhaps in vain, tried to explain to Soulja Boy once more why she felt abandoned by him. After attempting to rationalize his distance by noting he had to keep his fans in mind—ergo, why he paid her no mind despite suffering a miscarriage—Nia refuted that nonsense with, “I lost a baby. Tou should’ve been there for me.”

Soulja Boy goes on to say, “We both took a loss,” but he is emotionally challenged; a child who honestly doesn’t seem to be in the position to be anyone’s father right now.

Nia, when your man effectively says “You had a miscarriage with my child and I was so sad about it, I blocked you on Instagram,” it’s time to toss that heart in a UHaul, and drive away—probably to old Mary J. Blige or new K. Michelle.

One person who doesn’t have any problem expressing her feelings is Hazel E, only her feelings are still seasoned with too much stupid and silly. I was with her when she reached out to Teairra Mari to try and mend the rift in their friendship. She verbalized ultimately what was her biggest problem with Teairra: Even if she didn’t agree with her choice to bend over to Berg and debase herself for a munchkin that didn’t deserve it, she wanted Teairra to just be a friend. I get that, but Hazel needs to grasp that you cannot police your friends’ feelings and real friends tell you what it is no matter how hard it might be for you to hear it. But hell, she tried.

Unfortunately, Hazel proceeded to then try the shit out of it when she asked Teairra to not work with Yung Berg in order to move forward in healing their relationship. Teairra Mari gave her that “Bitch, are you stupid?” face only to articulate that sentiment in softer terms—letting her know that no real friend would dare make such a request. She’s right.

Teairra Mari now has the same manager as Fizz, y’all. She no longer has a record deal. Despite Yung Berg not being even a decimeter of a decent man, the guy has produced a few hits and has a sound that works for her; why would anyone knowing the state of her career ask her to do something that would only further damage it. Teairra is too talented and too smart to entertain the request of the delusional.

Oh well, Hazel. I’ll lift your name in prayer to Self-Esteem Jesus. I’ll be asking Jesus to stop you from rapping, simping, and rapping about simping.

As for what else Teairra Mari and Fizz have in common, we can now add Nikki to the list. This show is full of forced relationships, so one shouldn’t be surprised that they keep that pattern going. Teairra fixed up Fizz with Nikki only I don’t see that going anywhere besides a used condom and an Uber ride home.

For starters, they both talk way too much about their exes. Who tells a person they just met why everything went wrong with the last person? These trainwrecks on VH1.

Listen here, y’all: If someone is talking to you about their ex on the first date, mentally check out. Save yourself.

Meanwhile, Fizz continues to have to engage in a back and forth with his caricature of a baby mama, Moniece. Moniece allegedly “went to the blogs” and accused Fizz of beating her and not being the best daddy. Moniece is out of her rabbit ass mind, though, so I get why Fizz would immediately want to check her on camera and fact check her bullshit in the confessional.

Read the rest at Complex.

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For a few weeks now, I and presumably other writers like me, have been asked to brace ourselves for this moment and to have our thoughts ready. These thoughts were mostly centered on this question: “If they decide not to indict Darren Wilson, what do you think should come next?” My answer remains the same: I don’t know.

What I do know is that Michael Brown’s killer shot him while he was unarmed and though the narratives of how that conclusion came to be have varied, the reality remains that if you are young and you are Black, you are 21 times more likely than whites to be shot dead by police. After that, your reputation may have to die, too, to uphold your killer’s name.

With this jury decision comes yet another reminder of how little many care about Black life. I’m not sure what’s next and none of us are being given enough time to consider our options. It’s already happening again.

On Saturday evening, 12-year-old Tamir Rice was shot and killed by a Cleveland police officer outside of a city recreation center. The officers who answered the police call about a “male threatening people with a gun” – a first-year rookie and a 10-year department veteran – “have been placed on administrative leave pending the results of the department’s investigation.” Rice was carrying a BB Gun and I have no faith in the department’s investigation.

Not even little Black kids are safe from a police officer’s biases and bullets.

And when Black people are rightfully angry about it and peacefully take to the streets, somehow the victims get categorized as the agitators. Missouri Governor Jay Nixon set an unnecessary tone when he issued a state of emergency and activated the National Guard before the grand jury’s announcement. Earlier today, Nixon held a press conference where they effectively pleaded for the protection of property to people disheartened and rightfully angry with the police for stealing lives.

Over the weekend, President Obama did not help matters as he told ABC News that no protestor should use their right to express their views “as an excuse for violence.”

The police are the ones committing acts of violence and it is law enforcement agitating otherwise peaceful protests.

Worse is when Obama refuted Congressman John Lewis’ (D-GA) assessment that Ferguson is a “turning point” for the modern Civil Rights movement, comparing it to the march on Selma.

Mr. President, you don’t get to tell someone who was at Selma, or what is or is not like Selma. Moreover, to dismiss the role systematic segregation and discrimination plays in today’s culture of police brutality is to be willfully obtuse. Just look at Darren Wilson, a former member of a police force that was disbanded due to racial tensions, and a soon-to-be-retired member of another police force that has its ownreported issues with “officers’ training and racial sensitivity.”

America is not Disneyland; don’t bother trying to convince any of us otherwise.

As if this reality were not harsh enough, the manner in which the announcement that Darren Wilson would not be indicted made it all the more infuriating. While delivering his remarks, St. Louis County prosecutor Bob McCullouch ever so condescendingly faulted the media and social media for…daring to care about Black life or not allowing them to quietly sweep Michael Brown’s life under the rug? At one point, McCullouch declared, “The real villain is the 24-hour news cycle.”

The villain is the person who killed an unarmed Black man. Don’t moralize the media and the folks on social media who got them to give a damn. Bob McCullouch’s speech was basically pouring salt on the wound and spitting in our faces.
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My initial reaction to TV Land’s decision to cut The Cosby Show from its lineup was mostly tied to the notion that Bill Cosby is not being afforded the same luxury as his white counterparts like Woody Allen and Roman Polanski, who continue to see their films aired and celebrated even when we’re given detailed reminders of their sexual allegations. However, when it comes to Bill Cosby, it’s a bit more complicated than my knee-jerk reaction to the cable network’s decision suggests.

If you go on social media, you will see tweets like, “Remember..at one time Bill Cosby was about to buy the NBC network..a Black man with any kind of real POWER is not cool in America!!!!” Likewise, “They can’t never let a Black man be successful & respected by all at the same time….don’t try & dirty Bill Cosby’s name bruh.”

Then there outlets posing leading questions such as “We see Bill Cosby, a Black man, being accused by multiple white women of rape. Is he automatically guilty because of the racial layer?” Even some misguided white people have entered the fray, arguing that Cosby is being mistreated while white women like Lena Dunham are being let off the hook.

Some refuse to believe the ever-increasing number of women who have accused Bill Cosby of raping them due to the idea that this is nothing more than a concerted effort to bring an iconic Black man down. An iconic Black man who presented an image of a Black family that means so much to so many – exactly why the Black-focused networks like the BET-owned Centric and Magic Johnson-founded Aspirehave decided to keep airing episodes of The Cosby Show.

No one can deny the reality that Black people – even famous, wealthy ones – are often treated more harshly than white people. Nonetheless, these Bill Cosby apologists conveniently leave out the part that Bill Cosby has long been accused of raping women over the years and he’s only now really facing public backlash for it. So if this was truly about the media “just trying to assassinate another Black man character” as some have suggested, why did it take so long?

What’s happening to Bill Cosby now is not an affront on the Black man. This is a testament to how one powerful man can no longer flex his muscle to shut people up in an age where new media and social media drive the conversation in ways a 77-year-old celebrity is not used to. Sure, TV Land’s decision is harsh, but it will likely be reversed the same way networks have returned to airing episodes of 7thHeaven despite its show’s patriarch, played by actor Stephen Collins, confessing to child molestation.

This isn’t about racism so much as it is a lingering lassiez faire attitude many have about sexual assault. There is not enough sympathy in the world for victims of rape and there’s even less when the accused rapist is an entertainer. People will put their entertainment value ahead of a person’s humanity. It is why Woody Allen, Roman Polanski, and yes, Bill Cosby, have managed to amass fortunes for their art with only small blemishes to their legacies.

It is why R. Kelly continues to have a career despite the charges leveled against him. This is a man who has been accused of raping children for several years and has responded by being just as sexually explicit in his creative works than ever before. If we go by the logic that Bill Cosby’s current media narrative can be attributed to racial politics, than why is R. Kelly still relevant? As much as many of us love 12 Play, his contributions to culture are far less important that Bill Cosby and he doesn’t possess a fraction of the prestige Cosby has.

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