Anita Baker Speaks Out...

One of the finest vocalists of all time, Anita Baker, is interviewed in the July 2000 issue of Sister-2-Sister magazine in which she speaks out about the media's treatment of Whitney Houston.

Anita Baker ain't laughing at the Whitney Jokes. (This title also appears on the cover of the mag.)

I spoke with Anita Baker around the time that folks seemed to be attacking Whitney Houston left and right about her possible drug use. Anita was very distraught about it. She told me she's upset about people making jokes about Whitney. She explained that "Whitney is our Barbra Streisand and if you don't have anything good to say, Don't help to destroy her" She said, "It takes us three generations to build a WHITNEY HOUSTON - ARETHA FRANKLIN, CISSY HOUSTON,DIONNE WARWICK, on up to our Whitney." Anita went on the say,"The people on the radio don't mean no harm {white Folks} do this to their stars, so we're supposed to do it to ours because that's what they do. But it takes us so much more to come up than it does for them."Anita was reaching out to help sister Whitney.

CLASSIC WHITNEY DISCUSSION
Author Subject
MADMonte64
Global user
(6/3/00 7:59:19 pm)
152.163.206.183
Anita Baker's comments on WH on the Newsfile

Just a quick note of thanks, Manish & Alan M, for providing the featured comments on WH from Anita Baker in Sister-to-Sister. AB is a truly gifted vocalist and a classy woman. I hope that her heartfelt words have found their way back to WH to help buoy her spirits.

The remark about it having taken 3 generations to build *our* (African American/black) WH was very poignant and astute. I know that AB's implicit racial characterization of the media's treatment of WH will likely polarize opinions, but I think that she tread very lightly in deference to the general public. I would in fact argue that the media DO intend (more) harm to non-white stars. Moreover, though I thoroughly understand the context of her comparing WH to Barbra Streisand, I would contend that WH has earned the distinction to be classified as a one-of-a-kind icon: WH is no version of another artist -- she is the one-and-only WH.

WH is fortunate to have a friend in AB.

Health & peace. MAD, as ever, Monte

Blackatlantic
Local user
(6/3/00 10:49:17 pm)
12.75.160.103
Anita Baker's Comments on An American Disgrace

Thanks to Monte for drawing my attention to this news item and to Alan M and Manish for supplying it.

Anita's observations are spot on and inisghtful. But don't be surprised if some critics dismiss her remarks as blind race loyalty--that is, an attempt to police the racial group borders and cover up "the community's" dirty laundry. The subtle message in Baker's comments, however, is that the laundry is actually all ours to share and to air. The fact that it takes "three generations" to produce our "black Barbra Streisand" and a mere six months of media muckraking to savage her is not an African-American humiliation; it's an American disgrace.

Eyelid
Global user
(6/4/00 3:30:57 am)
172.164.76.224
I agree with ANITA BAKER ever soo much

African American (I am one) we are so damn, Whitney is truely the barbra of AAmericans, regardless of what anyone might say, Whitney is THE one, she is an ICON.... And the sad thing is that African Americans are the first to destroy what they have worked so hard to create.

All that bad talk about Whitney came from a lot of black folks, I don't understand Whitney put AAmericans right on the map, when Singers like Madonna were taking over she came into the industry and sang like no other black Lady has sang and the gratitude you get is people bad mouthing her...

I love you Anita Baker thank you for being a true person, you are also an example and an Idol to me and many others

Rodney1
Global user
(6/4/00 11:15:55 am)
63.71.228.4
Thanks For Bringing That Snippet to My Attention

It is obvious that Anita holds Whitney in high esteem and that there is no jealousy there for her, unlike a lot of other female vocalists. And boy did she speak her mind with no hesitation. I could go on about this issue as I have many times before but those few lines were a great read.

Rodney

Nat 
Local user
(6/4/00 1:06:20 pm)
12.78.194.112
Much gratitude Manish. Thank you.
Manish 
Administrator
(6/4/00 3:00:53 pm)
212.211.16.62
Baker, Houston, Racism, Streisand & Ritchie

Anita Baker has to be one of the first prominent voices to stand up and be counted in support of Whitney Houston. There could be many reasons for other's silence, the primary one being that people *just don't know* what the truth is and as a known celebrity, they don't necessarily want to put their heads on the chopping block before they hear from Whitney herself.

From Whitney's perspective ~ not that I know what this perspective is exactly, this is just my opinion ~ she may feel she has answered the critics and the tabloid stories by her outstanding (by ALL accounts) Arista25 performance. Sadly, they only stayed quite for all of a week before launching another wave of attacks. This relentless barrage of insults, jokes, innuendo and lies is perplexing. What exactly does the media hope to achieve by this? It has got to the point where I am told the National Enquirer suggests that Whitney is on deaths door or something. And it goes on.

Anita Baker's comments are well phrased. She addresses the attackers rather than the issues that they are attacking with. An important distinction. Whether or not they will listen to that I am uncertain.

What I find most annoying about this whole situation is that Whitney can only be considered "The Black Barbra Streisand". Perhaps this is a function of coming after Ms Streisand or whether it be because Streisand is the blueprint from which all great singers are supposed to be measured. She's good, but really, someone who's musical output is minimal, stage fright overcomes her and thus limiting her live performances (hasn't she retired from performing altogether now?), and hasn't been relevant to music or to new generations for many years, I would suggest that she is at best the white Aretha Franklin. There is no other Whitney Houston - yellow, brown, white or black.

I have noticed the undertones of racism in the attacks on Whitney. It's actually stressful and boring at the same time. The same level of attacks on Madonna would be cited as "Rock'N'Roll Baby!"!!!! On Whitney, it's as though she is crumbling and on the verge of a major implosion and ultimate breakdown. The two sides just don't make sense.

I really do hope that the likes of Angela Bassett, Stevie Wonder, Tina Turner and Whoopi Goldberg step up and address the importance of how the media - and BLACK media is working against Whitney. They need to be called on it.

Moreso, I would love to see some prominent white artists step forward and acknowledge the different stance the media is taking. Where is Mariah Carey? Diane Warren? David Foster - and that's just a start. This is the kind of thing Madonna thrives on. What does she have to say? Surely the fact that she now lives with someone who has made some strong, sweeping generalizations about black actors in the UK has not blinded her to knowing and understanding what's going on. Madonna has never had any problem talking about major media issues and I would suggest this is one of the highest profile media attacks on a celebrity in some time.

Of course, many of these white Americans won't say anything. That's not their fault. Sometimes you have to live black/minority to feel racism and understand what it does and how it breeds.

I have more to say on this!!

OpenHeart&Mind,

Manish

Gosia
Global user
(6/4/00 3:25:00 pm)
209.90.169.224
Manish, I agree with you!

Although, I am white, I do notice a lot of racism and I see how negative it is. I enjoy a lot of black artist music, but unfortunately, because I live in a white area, no radio station wants to play it until it is in the top 10 on Billboard. Also a lot of students at my school are very rude to me because I am open about the fact that I enjoy songs sung, written and produced by black people. To me it really doesn't matter, what skin colour the artist is, it only matters that I enjoy their music. I really wish society would look beyond colour of skin, age and sex and more into the quality and talents of people.

Quest
Local user
(6/4/00 3:36:35 pm)
152.163.205.12
Damn Manish-Great Post!!!
Rodney1
Global user
(6/4/00 3:45:40 pm)
63.71.228.4
Great Post As Usual, Manish!!

You make some very interesting and true points in your post. Certain comments raise my curiosity though.

Why do you single out specific artists such as "Angela Basset, Stevie Wonder, Tina Turner, and Whoopi Goldberg" as needing to speak out? I can sort of understand why you might mention Tina Turner and Whoopie Goldberg due to several similarities too many to name. And while Angela did speak up briefly on an Entertainment Tonight segment about the Oscars ordeal, not necessarily in disbelief of the rumors but moreso offering encouraging words of support, do you feel there is more she has to say or should say? And Why do you feel Stevie Wonder plays such a significant role in addressing the public. Obviously you know more about this than I do.

Also, what "generalizations about Black actors in the UK" have Guy Ritchie made? Unless you feel this is not the proper forum then I will gladly email you with those questions. I have not heard pf them on this side of the Atlantic and belive me when i say I read quite a bit about the entertainment industry and he is certainly a target of any news story, big or small, over in because of his relationship with Madonna. I'm certainly not questioning his talents and really only heard of him the first time when his movie 'Lock, Stock and 2 Smoking Barrels' was making its way over here to the US. I was going to see it but decided to wait for the cable premiere of video. But ever since he was linked to MAdonna his picture, along with articles, shows up quite a bit in US publications.

Then your inclusion of Mariah Carey in the group of "prominent White artists" sort of baffles me. It's not the "prominent" word that bothers me despite my distaste for her. I'm not being argumentative nor am I upset when I ask these questions but I'm just not sure if I would classify Mariah as a "White artist", despite the fact that she may or may not have tried to hide this beforehand, or at least in her earlier career. I know someone is going to come forward and say that she was always straight forward with her racial background but that really isn't the issue at hand and it's a debate I would rather take on with anyone in person since a lot of typing would be involved and written words are sometimes misconstrued. She straddles the fence so much in all of the intricate details of her, that it's a whole other topic for discussion for another day. But please tell me why you are inclined to group her in that category. Again, this may not be the proper forum to discuss this and I will gladly email you if you wish.

Rodney

jeffrey
Local user
(6/4/00 4:05:51 pm)
170.142.76.39
well stated Manish!

i'm always gratifide by your insight!

Mike From Canada
Global user
(6/4/00 4:05:55 pm)
206.172.142.146
Gosia, where in Toronto are you from...

I can't believe that you can experience such treatment in a country that is so multicultured. What school do you go to? I'd be interested to know, only because I live in Mississauga and I can't say that I've seen what you've experienced. Maybe, I'm not looking hard enough or maybe I'm just naive about the whole thing. Mind you I'm asian, so I really can't say I know what you are going through, nor can I say I know what it feels like to be an African American.

Remain Blessed,
Mike

marc200
Global user
(6/4/00 4:40:50 pm)
209.178.152.56

Re: Anita Baker's comments on WH

I agree with the sentiment behind Anita Baker's comments, but Whitney must accept some responsibility for her current predicament. Whitney knows how to defend herself. She has been very outspoken on the rumors about her sexuality. However, when drug abuse rumors abound, she says nothing. Something is not right.

Whitney herself complained that she has been targeted by the media because she is African-American. It is no secret that the mainstream American media is especially hostile towards blacks, but Whitney didn't just figure this out. I am younger than Whitney and I have been aware of the reality of racism for most of my life. For many of us, throwing up our hands and complaining bitterly may be the only thing we can do. A woman of Whitney's means has many more options, and she could set things right if she wanted. If the rumors are untrue, she can fight them. She is not a hapless victim of racism.

In the OUT interview, Whitney made reference to Lena Horne and Diahann Carroll as having faced a similar kind of racial discrimination in their day. I doubt Whitney could withstand the type of racism that either of those women were made to endure. And while those ladies had all sorts of hell breaking loose in their personal lives, they earned stellar professional reputations for being consistently decorous and always at the top of their game. When Whitney was a little girl watching Diahann or Lena on TV, she could justly be inspired by their talent, poise and personal dignity. She probably never witnessed those ladies on national television bleary-eyed, incoherent or hoarse. These women did not engage in bizarre public behavior that would subject them to ridicule. Instead they worked very hard to ensure that one day there could be a "Whitney Houston". Whitney Houston has far more cultural/historical significance than merely being a "black" Barbra Streisand, but Whitney doesn't seem to understand that.

I can appreciate Anita Baker wanting to protect her, but Whitney could do a lot more to protect herself.

Just an opinion.



Manish 
Administrator
(6/4/00 5:03:23 pm)
212.211.14.104
Chosen Few: Stand Up Against Racism Or Lie Still?

Rodney,

I didn't really single out Angela Bassett, Stevie Wonder, Whoopi Goldberg, Tina Turner for specific reasons consciously but thinking about it, these are people who earn some level of respect from the white mainstream. As well meaning as it is, comments from Queen Latifah, Deborah Cox and Toni Braxton perhaps would not hold as much water. Also, the aforementioned artists do not exist under the shadow of Whitney Houston whereas the latter group do in their own way.

I'm not expecting to see a run of support from anyone really. I'm just saying that they need to acknowledge the bigger picture in the way that Anita Baker has and understand that the implications for black artists - be it actors, actresses or singers, producers, writers or record company bosses - could include a ten year step BACK in time where black art was not valued as an equal. Strides forward have been made, there is not denying it but considering it was only 1992 that people were shocked that Kevin Costner could kiss a black woman in his movie proves how far we have to go.

Guy Ritchie recently said in an interview with the London Evening Standard that he had not met any talented black actors in the UK. He inferred that the UK did not have black acting talent. Simple as that. Of course, that was a bit rich coming from someone who lives with a woman who's acting abilities are not even questioned anymore. Everyone knows Madonna lacks any screen presence. If he was such an objective authority on the subject, perhaps he should have first looked closer to home before knocking black British acting TALENT.

Of course, much of the British media - still in love with Ritchie following his Lock Stock movie decided that this comment was not worthy of further publication and it was swept under the carpet with minimal outrage. I was livid. Even dotmusic, who seem to be very hot on anything Madonna does and have a supposed strong anti-racist policy according to Andy Strickland (editor) failed to make this comment newsworthy.

Mariah Carey, regardless of how she now chooses to acknowledge her heritage is a white artist. She lives white and sings black. She's the stereotype "white bitch" in the black rappers videos which we saw throughout the 80's and 90's. She's mastered the potentially erotic undertones of this kind of behavior in her image and at no time is she ever a black singer. She's always a white singer playing at being black but at no point does she ever want people to actually view her as a black person. That’s fine, it's her artistic choice. It's dishonest but it sells records for her in the US. She has some sway with the media in the US and her voice in condemning this all out assault on Whitney would serve her well as a genuine person as well as convince one or two more people that her "good friends" routine with Whitney was sincere in some way.

Again, I don't expect any one of them to say anything. Whitney's own silence may be making them nervous and I don't think any one of them want to stand up against the crowd of "flesh eating vultures" for fear that they may be next.

OpenHeart&Mind,

Manish.

Franz
Global user
(6/4/00 7:00:10 pm)
209.240.200.171
Re: Chosen Few: Stand Up Against Racism Or Lie Still?

There are so many sides to every story.

First, I think people are scared to say anything positive about Whitney. Because if they say something positive about her, and it turns out she's been on all kinds of drugs, they will look like a fool. It wouldn't even matter if they were talking about that in the first place.


Second, that whole Whitney thing isn't exactly a scandal. It's not something everyone is talking about. Really. In "MY" experience, most people look at her with Bobby Brown and see them as dysfunctional, mostly because of his alleged behavior. But tabloids do have a way of slipping into your subconscious and affecting how you react to someone.


Third, it's the way it seems to work in the entertainment business: DO NOT GET IVOLVED. For example, where were all celebs period when Michael Jackson had his year/s in literal hell? Who spoke up for him? I mean, it says a lot when his sister Janet choses not to acknowledge it, until a few years have passed. Stay far away from negative scandal seems to be the rule. If anyone needed support it was Michael in 1993.


Fourth, too often we ALL thrive off negative, insulting and degrading statements, when it applies to someone we deem as "inferior"... so for some, it's ammunition to show how screwed up Whitney is. You can't always have things both ways. The media is feeding a power trip we enjoy taking at different moments in time.

Lastly, the media does play the race card at times. And it is shrewedly done! This hasn't started with Whitney. It's always been there. And Whitney is in no way getting the most brutal racist undertones. No way. It's the responsiblity of high profile black entertainers to risk looking like "whiners" and discuss these things in high profile venues. Now, how many have done that in the last decade?




Rodney1
Global user
(6/4/00 7:37:54 pm)
63.71.228.4
Thanks For The Explanations

I understand your perspective completely. I'm still not in agreement with the "Mariah Carey....is a white artist" comment. I would go along with "artist who could pass for white" or an "artist raised as white" or an "artist who spent most, if not all, of her time surrrounded by whites" but not simply a "white artist". I loved the comment on how Guy should look "closer to home" comment as far a his mate is concerned. It gave me a chuckle. :-)

Rodney

Rodney1
Global user
(6/4/00 7:41:34 pm)
63.71.228.4
And A Very Fair Opinion. Very Good Points NT
letrice
Local user
(6/4/00 9:22:12 pm)
63.27.50.251
What is sad and scary.......

about the whole Whitney situation is that her negative press is always before a project or a major appearance...always. This assault on successful blacks is widespread and it has always existed. What I find most disturbing is the most powerful group in Black America...(preachers) are sitting back and remaining silent. It is not the entertainers or the politicians who gets the ball rolling it has always been the preachers.

JRKing
Local user
(6/4/00 9:22:22 pm)
216.37.161.52
Guy Ritchie's comments...

Fro mthe London paper:
As Ritchie puts the finishing touches to Snatch, Vaughn is already gearing up for their next project, an English remake/remodel of the Seventies American football prison drama The Mean Machine. The real problem arising from this appears to be casting. Ritchie is keen to the point of obsessiveness to cast actors who look and sound authentic. And he is becoming increasingly frustrated about his failure to find them.

'There are no young black actors around,' he says, somewhat contentiously. 'The ones I've seen all speak
Shakespeare beautifully but that's not the point. Now I see why they had to import Forest Whitaker to play a
British soldier in The Crying Game. His accent was bloody awful.'

Ritchie is also less than impressed by the seemingly endless stream of British gangster movies that have been rolled out since Lock, Stock. Several volleys of candid views later ('Shite!' 'Pants!' 'Haven't Seen It!'), he agrees there is still room for a truly serious British gangster movie. But not yet. 'We'll have to wait until all this other stuff dies down, unfortunately.'

Manish, is this what you were referring to? Unless I'm totally out of it, I don't see what was so horrid about black actors.I took it to mean there are no black actors in the UK that fitthe mold he wants to use in his movies, perhaps. And I'm sure he is aware of Maddy's deficiencies in a good number of her movies- it was kinda tasteless to throw in jabs at her when she was not the focus of your comments. Tsk, tsk.

letrice
Local user
(6/4/00 9:35:27 pm)
63.27.50.251
Re: Thanks For The Explanations

Yeah Rodney that Guy R. statement was funny and Manish nailed that other diva. I think the game is over because r & b has rejected her last single even with the rapper helping.

JRKing
Local user
(6/4/00 9:42:06 pm)
216.37.161.52
Undermining Babs?

Regardless of how relevant Babs is at the current moment in time, she is the female equivalent to the late and great Frank Sinatra as far as entertainers go. Her appeal is evident in her ability to sell albums even without the benefit of a hit single- Higher Ground sold 3 million copies without a hit US single, for example. And who else can command the outreageous prices she can for her concerts- yes the stage freight thing was a bit ridiculous, but that's her problem. And I would hardly call her the white Aretha. People and Funny Girl were released before Aretha had any kind of major impact in the music world. Plus, barabar's talent goes beyond her great voice: actress, director, songwriter, etc. Som the comment about her being the white Aretha was totally inaccurate, IMO.

I think what Anita was possibly referring to when she said Whitney was "our Barbra Streisand" is that Whitney reprsents the utmost class in the black community, and Whitney has enjoyed musical success, as well as some Hollywood success, though certainly not the level of Babs.

And I don't know if I amn in total agreement with the notion that Whitney is getting a bad rap by the media because she's black- don't be so sure that if it was Maddy for which drug rumors were persisting that it would be dismissed as "Rock and Roll baby!" I hardly think that would be the case at all. That was a silly comment- look at the bad press that Robert Downey Jr. and any other of those Hollywood bad boys get because of their lifestyle. I think it's very plausible that because Whitney has not addressed any of the issues that the jokes and bad press have not ceased. In fact, I think that may be a big part of it- if the lady opened her mouth to address some of the rumors or tales being spread, it may be a different story.

Rodney1
Global user
(6/4/00 9:57:13 pm)
63.71.228.4
Yep, You HAve A Point About The Timing

Just when everything had died down, or almost died down, Bobby gets arrested and jailed just days before the release of the WTGH. I could have died. I just couldn't believe it. Although it wasn't Whitney who was arrested, it still reflected on her and would cause one to possibly believe the rumors even more so or sway them if in disbelief before. Although she kept her distance by not appearing in court with him as she has before, I'm not sure that helped much either. Maybe some wonderful appearances in the upcoming videos will do some damage control if at all possible.

Rodney

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/4/00 10:58:11 pm)
152.163.206.188
Uh, JR, in this case, U R hopelessly out of it! :)

GR's snide implication that young black actors are not somehow *authentically black* because they speak articulately is grossly racist. Period.

mg
Local user
(6/4/00 11:14:32 pm)
199.60.226.115
survival.

this is an important thread for this BBS, and I'm pleased that people are discussing these politicized issues (of how race is a major playing card in whitney's relationship to the media, american public, and status within music history.)

i agree with everything manish has written here. thoughtful and valid points, all of them. i hesitated to join the parade, since so many of you have already contributed such pensive and candid ideas, but nonetheless…

aside from AB being entirely correct, this current persecution of WH is, as blackatlantic suggested, an american disgrace. and it is a disgrace in the vein of america's strongest religion: celebrity celebration. when whitney's hawaii adventure story first broke, I referred to this, and I believe that the arc has only continued to bend in the direction of whitney's quasi-religious persecution. as much as we resent and are aware of the racist, ignorant and malicious weapons being hurled at WH, this is a part of the american pattern in the great tradition of celebrity celebration. and I believe that if whitney is able to survive this round of abusive banter, her career will not only be stronger, but her public image will finally rise to the legendary level that so many of us already feel it warrants. i am not suggesting that this current barrage is in any way positive, but in the grand scheme of american, and universal worship, the pheonix rises, the reborn is rewarded, and respect is ultimately reserved for survivors.

and am I the only one who is mildly satisfied that whitney has maintained a dam of silence throughout this tempest? i respect her for waiting, with her own open hear and mind, and giving us her words when we are all through with our daggers. which I do not believe to be any time soon, sadly.

she's gonna be alright. she's gonna be okay.

mg

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/5/00 12:45:45 am)
152.163.197.46
The times, they haven't changed enough...

The lack of generational context in your comparison between WH and her predecessors Lena Horne & Diahann Carroll makes the analogy meretricious. These other women turned the other cheek & put up a brave, dignified front not necessarily by choice but because they were compelled by the racial climate of dejure discrimination and may have been afraid not to conform to expectations of decorum. Make no mistake: there is nothing noble & romantic about suffering helplessly w/o recourse & seething bitterly in quiet desperation. While their endurance surely benefited those who followed, these women were not on a mission to ensure that it would be easier for future generations of aspiring minorities: they were working hard just to SURVIVE, and their survival set an admirable example. If WH transcends the recent negative onslaught, she, too, will be looked upon as a role model.

The notion that WH has many more options than her predecessors and that she could set things right if she took responsibility is naively idealistic and somewhat ignorant of the pervasive corruption of systematic, institutionalized, entrenched sexism & racism -- and, in this instance, corresponding *reverse* classism. In LH's & DC's day, the consequences were clear, and the process was swift: refuse to toe the line and lose your career. Though WH can express her opinion more openly, the risks & repercussions, if not as obvious & immediate, are still insidiously potent.

Improved law has not granted impunity from the effects of prejudice. Though minorities have won many hard-fought freedoms, defacto discrimination has served to minimize, and even eradicate, many of these triumphs. If WH complains about her treatment, as a woman, she is labeled a bitch; as a black woman, she is an uppity nigger; as a wealthy black woman, she is deemed ungrateful for her advantages. The combined impact can be unenviably oppressive.

Unlike in LH's & DC's time, the authorities cannot make WH disappear, but the media can destroy her character, and, by extension, still ruin her career. The difference between then & now seems more one of degrees: is it easier to bear a quick *death* or a slow torture? Why do you think so few minority celebrities are willing to speak out on these issues? Would LH & DC have been equipped to w/stand the stifling scrutiny & relentless attack of the modern media?

WH surely has to assume some accountability to defend herself, but, the power of one notwithstanding, it often takes the collective force of a community united to uphold justice and to induce change. You should be prepared to fight for your individual right, but you should not have to stand alone.

Just another perspective.

Health & peace.

luvlyldy 
Local user
(6/5/00 12:53:08 am)
205.188.197.59

Re: Yep, You HAve A Point About The Timing

Amen Manish!!!

The celebs you pointed out are definitely the "A" list as far as "white" Hollywood is concerned. However, as many of us may know, Whoopi has never bitten her tongue for anything or anyone. After making several grave errors herself (i.e. Ted Danson in blackface) - I'm sure Whoopi could offer salve to Whitney's wounds. After having being somewhat blacklisted herself, it is refreshing to see the support of Anita Baker.

I totally agree with the MC synopsis. Nothing was more obvious than her debut being the "white" answer to Whitney. I personally don't feel that Lena Horne & Dianne Carroll suffered much from their entry into the limelight. These women were accepted due to their skin tones "close to white" which did not do much for women of a darker hue. If you want to talk about paving the path for Whitney and others, let's use Butterfly McQueen and all of those other "mammies" that came before the "light but almost white" colored women such as Dianne Carroll, Lena Horne, Josephine Baker, and Dorothy Dandridge. Like MC, these women "passed" on screen and in their professional lives in order to get ahead. Had their skin tones been the color of Whit's, they'd be singing the same tune as the Angela Bassett's of today.

I totally disagree with the answer lying in prominent African American preachers'/ministers' hands. Like who?
If you can recall, the leader of the SCL was arrested for embezzlement not long ago. I don't think there is much Whitney can do other than ride it out. Protesting too much would only presume her guilty. Not enough protesting she's presumed guilty, as well. So, why not take the middle ground, as she has done? Let the public/critics decide for themselves.

As Whitney has said before, her life is not on record her voice is. So, while she continues to honor us with her golden voice, as always, the critics can just sit with eggs on their faces and live vicariously thru her!!! When a person (i.e. Jay Leno - the jerk of all jerks) has so many shortcomings of their own, it's only natural that they will attack someone else to make themselves feel/look better.

Whew!!! I hope I wasn't too long winded. This is truly a subject I can debate for days.

WH - Often imitated, never duplicated.

Marcus
Local user
(6/5/00 6:25:27 am)
203.101.121.92
Issues

First of all, I see little correlation between Madonna and this particular issue concerning Whitney, so I wonder why you chose to bring her into the discussion, Manish?

The media have always tried to bring Madonna down, but she deals with it. She answers her critics by proving them wrong. Interestingly, she has never been accused of taking drugs etc. The whispers about Whitney's "problems" have become awfully loud recently, haven't they? Why?

Guy Ritchie's comments are open to plenty of interpretations. Perhaps the media didn't pounce on it because it really doesn't say much? Let's analyse his comments:

'There are no young black actors around,' he says, somewhat contentiously.

OK, so this is a generalisation. Obviously there are young black actors around, but he's just not hearing about them. Let's have some names of some young black English actors, please....Manish?

'The ones I've seen all speak Shakespeare beautifully but that's not the point.'

Here he acknowledges that there *are* young black actors around, but they're not working in the genre (or capable of working in the genre) that he wants them to. Given that he works in the genre of gangsta films, someone who's clasically trained and does a great job at Shakespeare isn't going to be terribly useful to him if they can't work in a different genre, are they??!!

'Now I see why they had to import Forest Whitaker to play a British soldier in The Crying Game. His accent was bloody awful.'

So basically what Guy is saying is that the young black actors he's seen aren't capable of playing the "rough" characters. It's his opinion, sure. But do we label the guy who claims that the women he's seen act can't believably portray an aristocrat, misogynist?

As for Mariah Carey, she's not white. If she were, she wouldn't be eligible for the African American Music Awards (I forget their exact name), would she? Note there are no equivalents for the white recording artists, but that's a different issue all together!

When it all boils down, Anita's comments are directed at the black media. If the black media are trying to bring down a black artist, is this an act of racism? If so, then pretty much every artist ever targetted by the media is a victim of racism - yes, Madonna included. What's good enough for the "blacks" is good enough for the "whites".

letrice
Local user
(6/5/00 6:46:44 am)
198.109.44.2
Excellant points luvlady.....but

I still feel the preachers as a body could address and stop this attack on successful blacks. This has been going on far to long not only with Whitney but with other black acts. Yesterday on the news Eninem got caught with a gun and arrested you should have seen how the media gingerly mentioned this. It was reported as trivial.

JRKing
Global user
(6/5/00 7:41:10 am)
24.229.46.120
OK, I can see how one would take that as offensive
Rodney1
Global user
(6/5/00 7:53:52 am)
63.71.228.4
There Is No Such Thing As The African American

Music Awards. Even if you're referring to the Soul Train Awards and its offspring awards, the Lady of Soul Awards, White artists are eligible and have been nominated. They honor R&B music and the last time I checked Whites have not been prohibited from doing R&B music. Jazz artist Dianna Krall (spelling?) has been nominated and won. Other nominees have been Tina Marie and Lisa Standsfield that I can remember off the top of my head. So are the Grammies, the White American Music Awards? Geez!

Rodney

lopez
Administrator
(6/5/00 8:55:44 am)
205.188.192.159
Re: Issues: Bpy do I want to jump in here!!

I'm waiting for you to analyze Rosa Parks being ordered to go to the back of the bus and give up her seat. As someone who has experienced blatant and sutle racism and sexism and triumped, your comments were really, really, really OFFENSIVE!!!!!!!

The comment about the 'African- American Award' is very telling and speaks to something else!

Rodney, thanks for your informed reply. However, I will hold my tongue or rather keyboard.

p.s. To the poster who stated that where were people for Michael Jackson...u have a point but I vividly remember Whitney offering her support. She stated that Michale was in her prayers much as she did for Puffy. I believe that I read this in a magazine- it may have been the TV guide cover around theBG and the Grammy awards era, i'm not sure but I did read it.

Edited by lopez at: 6/5/00 8:55:44 am

letrice
Local user
(6/5/00 8:57:23 am)
198.109.44.2
Glad you jumped in.....

That post speaks volumes. Boy my mind is going this has really hit a nerve.

RM0919
Global user
(6/5/00 9:28:31 am)
199.48.24.1
Thanks Anita for voicing out your support to...
RM0919
Global user
(6/5/00 9:37:15 am)
199.48.24.1
Thanks Anita....

for voicing your support to Whitney. And yes, I hope that a lot more stars do talk and support Whitney. On the other hand, there is one crucial issue that is not resolved yet. Did she or didn't she?

I remember when this whole drug issue exploded, I went to several boards defending Whitney. But then, I realized that it maybe true because we're not hearing anything from Whitney. Why doesn't she deny or accept whatever it is.Why would I continue defending her when she's not defending herself?

If she goes on TV and tell the truth, then we will probably hear other people in the music/movie/TV industry supporting her. But unless they themselves hear the truth, then they wont! To others, supporting Whitney may mean condoning her reported drug use.

Rodney1
Global user
(6/5/00 9:43:45 am)
63.71.228.4
Go Ahead...Tie Those Fingers Down, Girl! LOL

I also was going to mention to that very person that Whitney offered support for Michael. Like you, I'm not sure of my source for this, possibly straight from Whitney herself, but I do remember either reading or hearing that Whitney offered support to Michael, just like Lopez said, when very few others did so. So, the real question is where is Michael's support for Whitney?

Rodney

Quent
Global user
(6/5/00 9:46:29 am)
64.20.28.41
Ummmmmmm.....,

Though I agree with your statement that Whitney Houston is not completely without blame for her current predicament, that is where our agreement ends. What I see in most your post is an often-used lawyer trick i.e. making it seem as though the victim has victimized herself. What were you wearing on the evening in question ma'am? This couldn't be further from the truth. There is no excuse for the vicious, mean-spirited and relentless media attack being visited upon Ms. Houston

You say Whitney Houston is not a hapless victim in her situation, but she is not necessarily bargaining from a position of strength. In my opinion you have exaggerated her ability effectively affect an outcome given her predicament. In the U.S. for the most part the freedom of the press is absolute. In almost every instance where there has been a ruling against a media organization for libelous and/or slanderous speech the case is immediately appealed and overturned. Every time the Enquirer is sued they don't even have to defend themselves because multi-billion dollar media conglomerates such as ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN all break their necks falling over each other to file legal briefs on the behalf of their media brethren. Further these verdicts are overturned without regard to actual injury inflicted by the reporting institution or the truthfulness of the report. To fight the media on a legal battlefield for the most part is really an exercise in futility.

Although Lena Horne and Diahann Carroll may have had reputations for always being on top of their game, the simple fact is no one is always on top of their game. This includes Whitney Houston. However an individual's career cannot and should not be judged on the basis on a few less than stellar performances but on the consistency of their body of work. In that regard Whitney Houston's career is as sterling as anyone's is. You say you doubt that Whitney could withstand the type of racism endured by these women in order to be seen and heard. Well that is something we will never know. However, conversely the question could also be asked how well would Ms. Horne and Ms. Carroll fare under the intensity of the media glare that has been squarely and continually focused on Ms. Houston throughout her entire career? Further I would argue that the racism faced by WH is just as pervasive as that faced by her predecessors the only difference is that it is less overt.

I would also agree that WH is far more significant than just a black Barbara Streisand. IMO- Whitney Houston represents a synthesis of all the hopes, dreams, and aspirations of people such as Lena Horne, Diahann Carroll, Dorothy Dandridge and many less recognizable and nameless black artists before her that were unduly denied and an opportunity to express the their talent on such a grand scale -- and unlike you I do not believe she is oblivious to this. I believe, as a fan that has closely followed her career that strain of this burden has, at times, been visible. Unfairly, this is a burden that has been thrust upon whether or not she decided to take up the mantle. Ultimately though what we as fan need to understand is that WH is her own woman and not beholden to us or our perceptions of what she should and could be, no matter how well-intentioned and noble those views are.

That's my word! Can you dig it?

luvlyldy 
Local user
(6/5/00 10:12:47 am)
205.188.200.52

QUENT, just beautiful!!!!!!!
marc200
Global user
(6/5/00 10:25:34 am)
216.244.19.217

Re: The times, they haven't changed enough...

When Whitney Houston likened herself to Lena Horne and Diahann Carroll, she didn't place her comparison in a "generational context". But for the sake of discussion I will give it a shot -- let's see -- if Lena Horne and Diahann Carroll were caught carrying marijuana back in their day, I believe they would have "disappeared" so fast, and so long ago, that we would not know their names today. That is one difference between their generation and ours. While it is true that Whitney is subject to more intense media scrutiny, it is also true that we are living in an age of greater tolerance and forgiveness of perceived moral turpitude. Whitney can, and already has, done things that would have ended the careers of these ladies.

I think it is an insult to the legacies of Lena Horne, Diahann Carroll, and other black women of their generation, to suggest that their resolve to NOT bring disgrace upon themselves was borne of fear or desperation rather than courage. I am not sure how much you know about the personal or professional history of Lena Horne, but her legend was not founded upon a philosophy of "toeing the line". In the 1950's, Lena was branded a communist sympathizer simply because she was involved in the civil rights movement and lent her support to other progressive social causes. Accordingly, she was ostracized by the entertainment industry at great detriment to her financial prospects and professional advancement. This is hardly the lot of a woman who was merely "turning the other cheek". Whitney is obviously aware of Lena's legacy and is inspired by Lena's strength of character.

Lena and Diahann were definitely not in the business of conforming to any mainstream expectations of who they should be. As you know, the conforming image of a black woman in the age of de jure racial discrimination did not consist of poise, charm or personal dignity. If Lena Horne fit the conforming image of black women of her day, the film studios would not have excised her scenes from films before screening them for Southern audiences. Therefore, it is presumptuous and untenable to state that Lena and Diahann did not consciously order their actions in such a manner to ensure easier passage for future generations. Black americans of their generation were very cognizant of their obligation to ensure that the road would be easier for future generations in every industry, trade and profession. That was the essence of the American civil rights struggle!

Finally, there is nothing na´ve, idealistic or ignorant in stating that Whitney Houston has the ability to set things right. Even within the constraints of what has been termed "the pervasive corruption of systematic, institutionalized, entrenched sexism & racism", Whitney still has a leg up on the vast majority of African-americans. Wealth and celebrity are proven and powerful weapons against racism. The media cannot destroy the character of a woman of Whitney's stature without her complicity. Whitney Houston is a huge celebrity who can commandeer any available media outlet to address the rumors about her -- or she could just clean up her act. She also has a large, fiercely protective fanbase that will support her even under the most incriminating circumstances. If Whitney makes a loud, public pronouncement that she is "not guilty", she will not find herself standing alone. I think the only reason other black celebrities have not rushed to Whitney's defense is because they recognize that she is her own best defender and yet she chooses to remain silent. If she is not fighting for herself, why should we fight for her? Her silence implies guilt, or at the very least, indifference to what is happening to her.

Please be assured that there IS nobility in endeavoring to place oneself beyond reproach. As well, it is incumbent upon anyone who would paint himself, or herself, a victim of racism to first ensure that it is the mere fact of their blackness that invites rumor and criticism.

Thanks for sharing your opinion with me.

Gosia
Global user
(6/5/00 10:28:30 am)
209.90.170.164
Hey Mike!

I live in Ancaster and I go to a Catholic school where there are only about 3 or 4 black students. It is really sad because the rest of the students are white and they mistreat students that are different from them. Anyone that likes music other than teenpoppers or heavy metal is looks upon as different and does not fit into a crowd the same way. I really wish they would mature and treat everyone equally, but unfortunatly, I do not see that happening anytime soon.

lopez
Administrator
(6/5/00 10:41:35 am)
205.188.192.157
Re: WoW ! This thread is fascinating

and I concur with you wholeheartedly.
BTW, to the original poster, Whitney is fully aware of the lineage from Ella Fitzgerald on up. I've heard her talk about it in person. Like other posters have so eloquently stated, there was racism then and racism now. I tend to believe sometimes that today it may be a little worse in some respects because sometimes it is very subtle and not overt and the powers that be go into overtime trying to make people believe sometimes that it is in their heard.

I think because of the proliferation of the internet and the swiftness of how information can be carried all over the world that living today is much harder as a celebrity than say in the 80's or perhaps as hard as in the 60's. The glare is on whitney like a laser beam unlike Lena and Diahann. Although those ladies helped paved the way, let's not be naive like lvlyday suggested. They also got the best of both worlds in that their skin colour gave them advantages that women with darker hued skin couldn't enjoy.

These things can't be isolated and contransted to simply. They are much more complex situations. Let me be clear, i'm in no means lessening the achievements of Lena and Diahann- I greatly admire them but I also know that they had it much easier than other black stars, not through any fault of theirs. Let's be careful with the comparisons.

p.s. I think what some people are missing is that Anita Baker didn't blindly support Whitney or even addressed her 'alledged problems'. She simply showed her humanity and offered support because she realize that Whitney is not just Whitney houston. She is an icon and represents something to minorities that is more than just a name. she is an institution almost and she was just decrying the tearing down of that instituition without regard for what it represents. This is far fetched but are we going to say that we need to tear down the Stautue of Liberty because it was getting old and decrepit without regard to the history!

Leigh W
Global user
(6/5/00 10:46:15 am)
209.153.233.235
Manish, I understand your position...

and I understand your point of view. I agree with you wholeheartedly and I too have a lot more to say but later. My only wish is that Whitney derives as much comfort and strength from Anita's words as I did
Peace!

Leigh W
Global user
(6/5/00 10:55:56 am)
209.153.233.235
Ditto! There's nothing left to say...

I agree with you Lopez in regards to the comparisons to Lena Horne and Diahann Carroll. The lives of Ella, Billie, and Sarah were extremely horrendous. I won't even go there with you Lopez about the skin tones. We both agree on this subject! Anita's words were supportive but I agree that we must keep her comments in perspective. Whitney is an icon and she represents an entire community and her career has been a catalyst for all Black Entertainers after her. You'd bet Anita would come to her defense as should many other Black entertainers. Whitney is the easy target for the media! Once they can see their efforts materialize is the moment they begin their attack on the "little guys". Anita is reiterating the notion that there is a bigger picture here and a bigger agenda at stake. For recognizing and acknowledging that fact alone, I applaud Anita's bravery and courage.

thebigham
Global user
(6/5/00 11:02:03 am)
163.231.237.21
I am losing patience w/ Anita...

...when the hell is she going to have a new album out????

It's been almost 6 years since Rhythm of Love!!!

lopez
Administrator
(6/5/00 11:02:27 am)
Re: Ditto! There's nothing left to say...

Leigh, I think that you've got it. It is a much bigger picture and it isn't so much what Whitney's probles is or isn't. It's the way she is being systematically teared down without regard to her entire contributions. I think BA said it earlier, 6mths of her life is being used to snuff out the remaining 17 or so of her career as a performer.

This may be far off but I think the closer that Whitney gets to the Beatles, Elvis, Barbra etc, there seems to be renewed vigour to 'get her'. Letrice, you are not paranoid! I'm not saying this for saying this sake either. I actually concur with MG a bit that if Whitney survives this media persecution that she will be better for it. I already think that she is an ICON but this will do it. However, as always, I wish her well and continue to pray for her continued health and safety.

Leigh W
Global user
(6/5/00 11:03:13 am)
209.153.233.235
Someone who agrees with me about...

Mariah and other issues she represents. I'm in disbelief at reading your post Manish but you have literally spoken my mind. OF course this is not an attack on Mariah but considering her and Whitney's recent success with the duet, and the endless references to their friendship, you'd think Mariah would have a comment to make. I'm dissapointed with a lot of artists, actors, and the like and their quiteness about the Whitney situation. I have more to say but my mind is about to explode. I will elaborate later!

lopez
Administrator
(6/5/00 11:27:51 am)
205.188.192.157
Re: Here is the Out Interview quote in context!

pg.59.....At the time, the music industry was hellbent on crossing over established black artists and newer, dance-oriented white ones. Michael Jackson broke the unspoken MTV color barrier, and Top 40 stations once indifferent to most black an dance-oriented performers in the wake of disco's eath were now embracing Jackson, Tina Turner, Prince, and Madonna. Davis knew the time was right for a singer with the spunk of a Jackson and the gloss of a Streisand. With video exposure replacing touring experience, HOuston went from background singer to solo superstar within months. She was unprepared for the changes overnight success inflicted on everyday life.

'You never go back home,:" she reflects, her mood turning somber. 'I drove a Mercedes back home to see my mohter when she still lived in East Orange, New Jersey. I parked my car in the driveway an when I came back, mayonnaise and mustard and all kinds of sh*t had been smeared on my car. That's how things had changed. Because I had achieved, some people didn't like it.'

Almost f rom the start, the media treated Houston with suspicion. While Prince pushed outrage, race and otherness, Davis marketed Houston as a squeaky-clean, all-American songbird, adept at both mainstream-targeted dance numbers and Star Search-ready warblers like 'The Greatest Love of All,' After the initial glow of her church background and star pedigree faded, the tabloid media started snooping for dish on the omnipresent-yet-mysterious star. 'Who is this Afro-American kid coming in here and sining pop music like Barbra Streisand?' Houston says, recalling the tabloid attitude toward her. 'We have to inspect this girl, we have to pick her apart.' Barbra had her day, too, you know as an Amnerican Jew. So did Diahann Carroll, Lena Horne. They ahd real tough issues to deal with- g rinnin' on stage with the white people and then coming home and having to d eal with civil rights issues. They picked me apart 'cause I surpassed the so-called rules. I beat the Beatles and the Elvises.''
******************************************************

This is the entire context of What Whitney said about Lena and Diaham in Out Magazine. I don't understand how you can simply say that she compared herself to those ladies and then say or imply that she wasn't worthy to do this. I read this part over and over and I came up with something different. I took away that Whitney was stating that when she started to really achieve and make her mark that she was treated differently by both sides - the majority and the minority. She likened her experience of her personal trials to that of Lena, Diahan AND Barbra Streisand. I think that drew parallels to what they all went through not necessarily the exact situations. I mean really, is one pain more worse than the other's pain? That's ludicrous! Going on to read, it is clear that she is quite aware of their civil right stances. She didn't make less of any of it.

letrice
Local user
(6/5/00 12:50:00 pm)
198.109.44.2
Thanks for the confirmation

Lopez, because for the last 10 years in particular these negative reports only appear right before a project. For along time it was geared at Bobby because he was an easy prey but I saw right through the smoke screen and knew that they were gunning for Whitney. Whitney body of work speaks for itself and that is what the media is trying to destroy. Normally they don't have to go to such extremes because so many successful blacks marry outside of their community and a blacklash occurs from the black community and they are no longer viable as an artist regardless of their contributions the media is well aware of this and so was Clive. This is why early in Whitney's career Clive and her mother told her about committing a career suicide. What is happening to Whitney is very deep its about racism and sexual control.

sabine201231
Global user
(6/5/00 12:56:10 pm)
64.236.189.104
mariah=dishonest ?

I can't feel Manish's statement on Mariah.
Being a white artist/person getting involved in R&B music makes you dishonest !?!?!?! Then I am the most dishonest person on this planet .
My musical upbringing started with people like Anita Baker,Whitney Houston,Aretha Franklin.Since day one I was into Soul,R&B,Gospel,Jazz,later came HipHop,Drums & Bass and House. I bought about 700 cds and 400 vinyl records since the mid 80's. Excuse me but I love R&B music.And I think Mariah Carey might be feeling the same way as me.I don't thinks she's much of a sell-out compared to MC Hammer . And I don't know any other female singer who was crazy enough to include WU-Tang's O.D.B. as guest rapper on a remix ("Fantasy") .











MADMonte64
Global user
(6/5/00 1:26:19 pm)
152.163.206.192
re: R the Grammys the White Am. Music Awards...?

Rodney, your humor is astute. To answer your rhetorical question: in policy, no; in practice, YES! >8[] The mighty whiteness of the so-called major awards shows has made specialized categories & presentations necessary to recognize outstanding achievements by non-white artists traditionally ignored or marginalized by a self-serving mainstream industry hellbent on promoting a one-dimensional perspective.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/5/00 1:29:54 pm)
152.163.206.192
Au contraire, the record is not over yet! :)
MADMonte64
Global user
(6/5/00 1:37:01 pm)
152.163.206.192
Not enuf time(Work!)/Will reply & elaborate later.
Rodney1
Global user
(6/5/00 3:21:22 pm)
63.71.228.4
Here We go With This White Thing. It really

cracks me up how Whites (Caucasions) insist on claiming Mariah as their own, in spite of her efforts, whether before she was famous or afterwards, to be accepted as White and totally forget about her racial heritage. I'm just not sure how you all, as well as Mariah can totally forget her racial background, that her father is Black man, a Black LAtino, or whatever the politically correct term desired (not to offend anyone but I'm not sure what the politically correct term is. I just know the man is Black). Is it because she's so fair skinned with basically straight (curly) hair which allows her this luxury, if one would call it a luxury? Do you consider Halle Berry, Cindy Herron of EnVogue, the Black actress Sally Richardson, Lenny Kravitz, Lisa Bonet, Diana Ross's last four children, Victoria Rowell of 'Diagnosis Murder', etc. all of which are half white and half Black but look mostly Black (African-American) as White as well or are they too dark to be afforded that luxury. I guess you consider jennifer beals of Flashdance' fmae to be white as well since she is also fair with straight hair. This thread is really getting to me. I am almost to the point of telling you how I feel about Ms. Carey (SPECIFICALLY) and not caring whose toes I step on to get my point across. I am a fiar skinned Black man, which is more than likely a result of the Slave master having his way down in the slave quarters many years ago. Although my father has always claimed Cherokee Indian ancestry, I have no proof, but does that allow me the luxury to refer to myself as White? I don't think so. So why do you consider MAriah Carey White? Please make me understand.

Rodney

Author Subject
jona23
Global user
(6/5/00 3:37:46 pm)
62.7.112.247
i agree with mark 200

Although i do agree thats whitney is worth alot more than a barbara striesand comparison.......you have to all agree that whitney lost alot of her class and grace many years ago ...........i do believe it was around the time she married bobby brown...........in her early career you never used to see whitney in compromising positions with the media.........she always held herself with the highest of grace and profesionalism...always.....but something happened in her life that changed that...........perhaps she was always like that and her earlier career was an act.................but come on...........that must mean she has sold herself out in her earlier career.......i know for a fact that her arrogance has got the better of her.........shes only human like the rest of us......and should show some respect to the poeple who have supported her for years............we all know shes a drug addict..............for 5 years according to the book "good girl bad girl" and if you listen to her voice now thats when the decline in her voice began.................and come on poeple like anita baker are going to stick up for her cos she is a good friend...........but whitney wont comment about it because everything in the media is very true and its about time you all faced it and stopped kissing her arse and grow up.

Tyron00
Global user
(6/5/00 3:41:26 pm)
63.144.144.98
Lopez you continue to impress me.....(NT)
Tyron00
Global user
(6/5/00 4:03:05 pm)
63.144.144.98
Jona what planet do you live on?

I would agree that Whitney needs to speak up for herself. Even though I didnt buy last week National Equier(sp)I did manage to read it while I was in the grocery story and the story seem false but there could be some truths behind it because they are mentioning people names and not just unnamed souces as their proof. So if the story is really false it is time for Whitney do something because even I a die hard Whitney fan is starting to have doubts. But Jona for you to say everything in the media is true then you need to grow up because the media twist stories to sell papers. Ex. Celine having twins a totally false story but Celine is fighting back unlike Whitney. Which makes you wonder.......

lopez
Administrator
(6/5/00 6:25:52 pm)
152.163.195.212
Re: Rodney, Some folks perceptions are surprising

in this day and age. Add to your list Jasmine Guy, Quincy Jones children, Donna Summer's 2 children and the list goes on an on. This topic is really hot and I think it is interesting that some people(mostly non U.S residents) have certainly made some eye-openning statements regarding race, racism, certain artists etc. I know how you feel about this topic and I hope that you don't let some opinions get to you where you have to tell us how you really feel! I don't c are but I don't think some folks could handle it. Sometimes I do think that some of these opinions and perceptions are born out of ignorance(not meant in a bad way.)

p.s. By the way, this isn't something new. I'm digressing now but one only has to view the epic movie 'Roots' to........ I also think that Mariah and Sony set this ball in motion about her heritage to take advantage of all the ethnic demographics that she claimed to have a link to musically. This half-Venezuelan thing always got on my nevers. I've met many Blacks who could make the same claim but it sounds ridiculous!

LK 
Local user
(6/5/00 7:00:45 pm)
194.134.125.201
U mean Whitney did do it for sales or something...

You stated that >Although she kept her distance by not appearing in court with him as she has before, I'm not sure that helped much either< So you think she didn't go there because she wanted to misguide the people? That would be the most stupid thing that I heard in a while: She would ignore her personal life just because she has a new cd out?....

I think all the things Whitney did or didn't do last year are because its all about her personal life. Think about it. She didn't answer those drug-questions becuase of Bobbi Kristina...IMO...by ignoring it she must have felt like it all would go away. IGNORING isnt the thing she did with those lesbian rumours, and they kept on for 10 years...I guess she learned from her past. I dont think she kept quiet because she wants to sell her CD's. She sold enough CD's for 3 lives...BTW this response wasn't all for Rodney, but to the whole Whitney/drug/rumours/bobby things that are on these last months...WOW I finally said what I wanted to say....

luvlyldy 
Local user
(6/5/00 8:08:07 pm)
152.163.213.48

Re: Here We go With This White Thing. It really

Rodney, I don't think it's really a "white" thing as you stated. Earlier in the thread, someone paid homeage to Teena Marie and other's who crossed over to "R&B". I, myself, am also black (neither fairskinned nor dark - just in between). Heritage - unknown, my maternal grandfather was a very bright man (as u stated probably due to "Master's" late night visits), however, my parents are both African Americans. What it boils down to is being appreciative of a person who represents themselves on a positive tip and also a person to whom the public can relate to.

I am from the old school and can remember and appreciate Teena Marie's contribution to R&B (Fire & Desire was the bomb). I can also remember Dolly Parton's crossover to pop and appreciated it. Back then, I was a closet DP fan. Loved her duets with Kenny Rogers. But that's neither here nor there. As for Mariah being equated to those artist you mentioned in your threads, it's a disgrace. Those artists have acknowledged both sides of their heritage. These artists are also individuals that many of us can relate to and sense some type of realness on their part. My perception of Mariah is that she is an absolute fake!!! And my perception is my reality, as I'm sure many would attest to.

f I may, let me give you some examples of how I and others may relate to a couple of the artist you named.

Halle - Involved in an abusive relationship, lost hearing in one ear because of it. Is/was a spokesperson for abused women.

Lenny K - As a youngster, struggled with his lineage and was taught to embrace both sides. To gain acceptance into the world of music, this man worked his way towards what he wanted. He did not tow the line as MC did, he did not marry an exec to get what he wanted. When labels said he didn't sound black enough he made sure that he marketed himself with the people who would accept him the way he was. Hence, the Lenny K we know today (the rock & roll version).

Jasmine Guy - Although she is fair skinned, there is no denying that JG embraces her African American culture with open arms as indicated by the different roles she has portrayed on screen. She has also stated, that as a "black" actress it is extremely hard for her to find decent work in Hollywood. Regardless of her triumphs, she still must audition for the menial roles she's allowed to play. And most times, she's auditioning with no named actresses as well. As a result, she can now be found on Broadway. Last but not least is her musical contribution. I do remember her releasing a CD some time ago. I think it had some hits, but the voice, style, and personality were all things young African American girls/women could relate to.

As far as MC goes, it just does not compute. As I've stated in one of my original post, I used to be a MC fan, but, when it became so glaringly obvious that she rebuked the African American culture she & her music were dismissed.
I am totally for anyone finding their niche in life, just be "real" about it.

IMO she has only recently started stepping over on the other side since divorcing her "sugar daddy". After relegating and/or sacrificing her Latino or African American culture to the backburners while married to Mr. Mattola, she's now trying to woo them back. I, as I'm sure many others who also come from modest upbringing, cannot relate to her "eclectic decor, eclectic musical styles, memorable accolades, lovely ensembles, and etc..." If my humor has been wasted, the above are just some of MC's repetitive and oh so boring statements. Do you get what I'm saying "lamb"?

Last but not least is her sickening effort at being a glam queen. Please, please, give me a video where she is not showing off her body, staring into the camera as if it was a mirror, and so on and so on. As my mom would put it, I wish she'd cover her pones (backside for u non-country folk). So, in summary, I cannot relate to the caviar eating MC who acts like her sole purpose in life is to show her derriere (hope I spelled it correctly) to any camera man within 50 feet. She's a fake!!!!!!

GIVE ME THE CLASS OF WHITNEY HOUSTON-BROWN ANY DAY!!!
Regardless if she's considered to be rude & crude, she's coming to you straight and that in itself is much appreciated.



letrice
Local user
(6/5/00 8:37:03 pm)
63.27.39.166
Wow...this thread is very important

for the whole CW community and it deserves to stay at the top for awhile are we brainstorming or what.

Marcus
Local user
(6/6/00 2:03:32 am)
203.101.121.58
Sorry....

I was referring to the NAACP Image Awards, of which Whitney has been awarded numerous. For those not in the know, NAACP stands for "National Association for the Advancement of Colored People". I apologise for not tracking down the exact name of the awards ceremony that I was referring to before bringing it up in relation to Mariah Carey.

While NAACP will occasionally honour a "non-coloured" person for outstanding contribution to the advancement of social justice through their work (e.g. Steven Spielberg this year), nominees in the various categories are of "coloured" background (I dislike that term immensely). According to a press release, "the awards are given to honor black entertainers and TV shows, books and movies with black characters".

Obviously no one here is aware that Whitney won an NAACP Image Award this year (in February) for "Outstanding Female Artist" for INRBIO.

So no, Rodney, I wasn't referring to The Soul Train Awards etc. I guess I'm just better informed than you about some things, hey?! ;-)

Can you imagine the uproar if anyone tried to introduce an award for white entertainers etc.? I won't for a second dispute that some races have been savagely discriminated against, but surely if true equality of the races is to be achieved, we shouldn't encourage or condone anything that serves to perpetuate the segregation of people based on the colour of their skin, should we? You won't see Barbra Streisand winning an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Female Artist - not because she's not an outstanding female artist, but because she is not coloured. That is discrimination.

Oh, and lopez - I'm Jewish. I know quite a bit about discrimination, prejudice etc. Thanks :-).

luvlyldy 
Local user
(6/6/00 6:39:39 am)
152.163.213.196

Reply | Edit | Del
Re: Sorry....

Can u say Oscars????

U are correct in saying that the NAACP does award image awards to non-colored people for their contributions and work with the "black" community. Off the top of my head and can tell you that Carroll O'connor was also awarded an Image Award.

However, when you have awards shows such as the Oscars, AMA, CMA, it's safe to say that at least 90% of the recipients will be non-colored.

For example - The Hurricane was awarded best movie.
Denzel Washington was up for best actor - He didn't win. Granted he has won before. But it's pretty much a safe bet, that he'll never win again. Those shows just doesn't work that way. Why?

1. In their eyes, once is enough.
2. He does have an active voice in the unfair treatment of blacks in Hollywood.

IMO the awards are so graciously given to people of color only when there is a need to paint a picture of fairness.

They awarded Cuba Gooding Jr. an OSCAR for his role in in that movie with Tom Cruise (the name escapes me at the moment). That was not, and I do repeat, not an OSCAR winning moment for him.

So, maybe you can see why it is necessary for the colored community and Latin community to award their own. It definitely will not be done fairly by the other means.

letrice
Local user
(6/6/00 6:52:29 am)
198.109.44.2
Good points LK

Denying those lesbian rumors kept that issue in the limelight and in the papers for over ten years. I think that the reason that Whitney is not talking about the drug issue is because she knows that what she is accused or what she might have done is mild and very trivial compare to what is going on in the entertainment industry. She knows what comes around goes around case in point Enimen. The media kept that mess about Puffy and that gun incident in the news and now Enimen is involved in the exact same situation. All eyes on Enimen, the media and judicial community to see what will happen.

lydia m h
Global user
(6/6/00 7:03:36 am)
12.25.156.62
Everyone give there self a big hand

Iam very proud of all of you guys and gals for the way you took this article from anita and wrote some very good and strong points, ive been just reading to see where it would go and i can really say iam am proud to be apart of this whitney board,and i can see where alot of you are coming from, so there is nothing more for me to say on the issue, but whitney should be proud of this board and the smart whitney fans that she have, lets have a group huge now

lopez
Administrator
(6/6/00 7:10:25 am)
205.188.198.42
Re: To Marc2000: From Monte: Nobility&Obligation

***Monte asked me to post his response that he sent to me via email because he kept getting an error on the bbs when he tried to post. Following is his response/post.***************


Subj:        To Marc200: On Nobility & Obligation
Date:        6/6/2000
To:        MADMonte64

re: The times, they haven't changed enough...

Let me first clarify my remark that "there is nothing noble & romantic about suffering helplessly w/o recourse & seething bitterly in quiet desperation." I regret if it understandably may have been easily misconstrued as it is a bridge between 2 other more direct statements. I intended it as a general expression of my sentiments on the CONDITION of being in a situation over which you have little control -- not as a specific judgment against the conduct of LH & DC. These women did not have the luxury to be outspoken. As WH said, "They had real tough issues to deal with -- grinnin' on stage w/the white people & then coming home & having to deal w/civil rights issues." Black women had no vote, no economic power, and essentially no rights. Black actresses accordingly had no bargaining position whatsoever to affect immediate or direct change. To grin & bear it was often the most viable option.

There are different measures of courage: not everyone has the inspiration or the fortitude of Rosa Parks to directly challenge policy. It does take courage to bite your tongue & to endure oppression in order to keep doors open & to break down barriers by surviving from w/in the system. Silence under these circumstances was not expedient acquiescence, but exigent resolve, making survival admirable & noble in & of itself. Many a brave act IS borne of fear &/or desperation: it is a matter of whether or not she succumbs to or transcends the pressure that enables a woman to distinguish herself. It is thus ironic that you (Marc200) take umbrage at my characterization of LH as someone whose seemingly measured quiet dignity served her well against racism, yet cite her persecution during the McCarthy era as a badge of merit when it is those who remained silent who were indeed the courageous rebels (unlike the cowardly squealers such as Elia Kazan).

Still, the tendency of starstruck fans to glorify the actions of celebrities above those of private citizens is patronizing, and diminishes unheralded heroism. Although the personal can surely be political -- and the mere act of being an employed black actress was a political statement in the oppressive atmosphere of post-WWII Hollywood -- distinctions must be drawn to separate acts of saintly patience from the more assertive stands of defiance such as Rosa Parks' seminal refusal to give up her bus seat. Those who choose to act as a profession do so to fulfill a creative passion, not to expressly make political statements.

Celebrity may afford actresses the position to wield political influence, but their impact is an outgrowth of (unfortunate) fan worship, and not the aim of their careers. It is neither presumptuous nor untenable to surmise that LH & DC did not consciously accommodate their behavior to ensure easier passage for future generations. Cognizance of an obligation imposed upon you by celebrity radically differs from setting out firmly to change the world through grass roots actions. Ascribing the same motivation of a civil rights activist to an actress whose profession thrusts her into the political arena diminishes the former's righteous virtue. Acknowledging as much is far from insulting.

I know plenty about LH, who, tellingly, was spurned more by Hollywood than by the slightly more color-blind music industry. You (Marc200) very conveniently ride the slippery slope of failing to distinguish between her image on film & her public image off-screen. LH's on-screen image of cooly elegant sophistication certainly did not conform to (Southern, especially) whites' image of a black woman, but her public deferential courtesy certainly did comply w/expected conduct for ANY actress in the days of the studio system -- otherwise she would not have been permitted to make any films of any kind. It is worthy of note that her unique on-screen image existed, even in the North, only in all black casts: she would never have been allowed to be depicted as an equal to a white woman's romantic lead amidst interracial interaction. It is the *mouthier* Dorothy Dandridge who more legitimately bucked these conventions on & off-screen, and consequently endured harsher ostracism before she died under suspicious circumstances.

Even if black actresses (& actors such as Hattie McDaniel, Butterfly McQueen, Bill Robinson & Sammy Davis, Jr.) were representing a white man's stereotype, however, they were subversively fighting the status quo. Simply being visible & employed and demonstrating marketable talent was its own form of rocking the boat. There are widely varying opinions on whether or not those who made this choice compromised too much of their integrity in the process; certainly w/in the black community there remains contentious debate on the ramifications of this strategy. WH made a keen reference to this conflict in her acceptance speech for the Sammy Davis, Jr., Lifetime Award of Merit on Soul Train in the mid-90's. I concur w/her that to belittle these actors is to grossly misjudge them. It should not be forgotten that they often endured humiliating treatment & dehumanizing roles in order to pave the way for greater future opportunity from which they themselves would not benefit. For their sacrifice, they received mostly condemnation from their own community -- an unfairly heavy burden.

If you (Marc200) truly believe that "we are living in an age of greater tolerance, you need to get out more & to pay closer attention to the news: in the US, Amadou Diallo, Abner Louima & Matthew Sheperd were not the victims of isolated incidents: their assaults are part of an increasing trend. As a society, we do, however, seem to be more forgiving -- of bigotry & other hateful attitudes. We ought to be horrified & alarmed by such torpor.

You (marc200) claim (outrageously) that "wealth & celebrity are proven & powerful weapons against racism" and that "the media cannot destroy the character of a woman of Whitney's stature w/o her complicity." Where is your evidence?! The OJ Simpson verdict polarized the US precisely because it was a glaring exception to the rule. A more representative case was that of Mike Tyson, who was convicted of rape on far flimsier evidence than that of the acquitted William Kennedy Smith. Tabloid journalism gleefully irreparably ruins reputations on a daily basis w/virtual impunity.

You (Marc200) ask "why should we fight for her" when WH's silence on recent media-generated controversies "implies guilt, or at the very least, indifference." Your characterization of her silence speaks more about your attitude than about WH's. Where you eagerly embrace "rumor & criticism" as "incriminating" evidence, I view her silent approach to the adversity as the tactic of someone who proudly refuses to give the muckrakers the time of day & who will address the issues only if & when she is good & ready on her own terms. (Why should she allow her detractors to dictate terms?!)

Implicit in the tone of your (Marc200) remarks is the odious notion that WH is a celebrity who needs to be brought to her knees, humbled & put in her place for having failed to uphold some white man's superficial standard of proper public conduct for a wealthy black woman. She need only live up to her own expectations -- not to your ideals. W/the amazing grace of a little help from her friends, she shall overcome.

Health & peace.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/6/00 7:32:43 am)
204.168.51.148
Thnx, Lopez, 4 adding my post/PC's can make U MAD!
Acoustic
Local user
(6/6/00 7:43:18 am)
139.134.35.66
Why is there always scandal and conspiracy

in everything that Carey does or says? Yes. Many people dismissed her as a white artist when she first hit the scene. But Mariah ALWAYS, from day one, recognised and gave respect to all her ethnic heritage. Is the way you sing or the songs you perform only defined by your skin color? Is the way you act a factor which determines what blood you have? If you are black, you have to sing and act a certain way? If you are white you have to sing and act another way? Some of these posts showcase a lot of negative and very generalised attitudes.

I myself have a multi-racial backgound - Welsh, black African, and native New Zealand ancestory. I do not consider myself one or the other. I do not act one way to be recognised as one or the other. I don't listen to one style of music. I don't feel the need to have to inform everyone of who I am and what my heritage is. If people want to or don't want to know me based on my tri-racial background, then I don't want to know them and it's no big loss.

No matter what people's feelings are towards Mariah's music, dress sense or her personality, her racial heritage should NOT be a factor in determining if someone likes her or not. And should NOT come into play when trying to find reasons to bring her down despite your feeling's towards her. When you do that, it's not only Mariah that you are insulting, it's a lot more people than that.

I really don't understand why this is such a "hot" topic. It's rather played out and quite annoying. Especially seeing as this is a Whitney board yet, posts about Mariah gain the most attention, time and space. Well, the negative ones do anyway. Go figure. My question is, would this topic garner so much attention if Whitney was white? I really don't think so. I've stated what I wanted to. Now I'm finished with this topic and am going to read some positive, Whitney-related issues. Reply if you wish, don't expect a reply back from yours truly. Continue the debate if you really find it necessary.

Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 7:50:20 am)
63.71.228.4
Marcus, Your Comments?Vocabulary, Or The LAck

thereof has floored me. I cannot type fast enough to stress my distaste for the ignorant post you made above. While you made one or two good points, your dumb comments totally negated them in my eyes and I'm not even sure if I even respect you anymore as I did have a level of respect for you and your knowledge about some things.

In your post you basically accuse me of being uninformed, specifically that your were "better informed than me about some things". I'm not sure if that was a joke or what. If it wasn't a joke, then you are an idiot for even going there. YOU ARE THE ONE who referred to them as "African American Music Awards", not me and I called you on it. YOU had the name wrong. I had no idea you were referring to the NAACP Image Awards from the wrong name YOU gave the awards. They are more than just music awards. YOUR ignorance is what started the whole thing. Had you asked a simple question before you shot off the post you would have saved us both the headache. I am well aware of the NAACP Image Awards. Obviously you weren't or you would have gotten the name right and you certainly would not have thought of them as "music" awards.

As far as introducing an "award for white entertainers", IMO all awards WERE INTRODUCED for White entertainers. Or have you forgotten the segregation and bigotry that prevented Blacks from participating along side Whites as equals in anything like education, church, restaurants, water fountains, bathrooms, entertainment........the list is too long to go on. Blacks weren't allowed to do anything but be slaves at first and then after their freedom was granted, they were still under heavy restrictions, held down and held back. So all awards and award shows were introduced STRICTLY for Whites. Only now since we are supposed equals in everything and integration has come about, we are now considered for and included in everything that were once intended for Whites ONLY, except for the Ku Klux Klan, which is perfect for my next point.

While I almost agree with your point that we "shouldn't perpetuate encourage or condone anything that serves to perpetuate the segregation of people based on the colour of thier skin", because I have always felt sort of guilty that we do have such organizations and awards because of the very reason you stated. But i take comfort in knowing that such organizations and award shows exist and are needed to perpetuate the ADVANCEMENT of people, hence one of the A's in NAACP, especially those who have been held back and who are still not ALWAYS regarded and treated as equals regardless of the fact that we have so many laws, legislations, provisions, whatever you want to call them, to ensure those those rights, EQUAL rights. True, the NAACP was organized for the "Advancement" of a select group of people unlike an organization, like the Ku Klux Klan and all of the other separatist groups, which are/were organized to hold that same group of people that the NAACP are trying to help. Wouldn't you agree that it theoretically makes it a fair game. (Not really, because there's probably a White separatist group born every day and we only have the NAACP) And all of the other laws that have been developed to somewhat "protect" us are legal and part of our government system and social structure, unlike the in-the-dark, undergorund, ill-conceived goings-on of the White separatist groups. Also, this Country (not sure of your locale) Blacks are a minority and Whites are tje majority. Even if things are handled in ademocratic fashion, whether it is voting for our country's leaders or voting for a Grammy or an Oscar, there are more Whites that control such destinies to be determined. And in most cases (note I said "most"), a White person is going to win whether he deserves it or not. So, if it wasn't for such awad shows like the Soul Train Awards or the NAACP Image Awards some artists or leaders may not ever be honored for their work as deserving as their work may be. Those little awards, despite coming from a small group of people, mean a lot to some people who may never get to take and Oscar or a Grammy home.

And here you are in the year 2000 still referring to people of color as "coloured". Where have you been for the last 3 decades? That word is no longer accepted to decribe people of color. Your very mind-set is why the world is in the state it is today. I saw the movie 'Blast From The PAst' starring Brendan Fraser and Alicia Siverstone where this kid had been in a bomb/fall out shelter all of his 30 or so years with his parents and totally oblivious to the outside world. Although it was a fictional, light-hearted comedy, could it have been your life story?

While I am/was tempted to get racist like you did in the above post. I will remain tactful while trying to educate you. You say we "won't see BArbra Streisand winning an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Female Artist - not because she's not an Outstanding Female artist, but because she is not coloured" (Everytime I see that word I get upset all over again). Well Mr. MArcus, Barbra Streisand is JEWISH just like yourself, since you felt so inclined to make Lopez Aware of that fact. Her being JEWISH gives her and your self a heck of a lot more advantages than many other people in this country (again, I'm unsure of your locale). Or are you also oblivious to the fact that Hollywood and the music industry is almost run and/or dominated by Jews. SOme of the most powerful, if not the most powerful, people in Hollywood are JEWISH. Every time you look around a JEWISH Rights leader is complaining about this word, this image, or that lyric in some movie script, TV show, or song and protesting until it is changed. Also, the skin color argument you pose has no weight. Rita Morano, who is LAtino and just as white as barbra Streisand, was nominated for an NAACP Image Award in her field. So what is this about skin color? And you talk about such awards as the NAACP Awards? What if I was to get totally racist on your ignorant behind and say that I think they should close down the Holocaust Museum here in Washington, D.C., simply take down and store every item inside its walls, tear down the building, and not erect it again until there is a Black or Afican-American Holocaust Museum to honor the heinous activities and crimes committed against our Black ancestors, a travesty that actually took place IN THIS COUNTRY, simply in the name of equality? You should be a little....no, a lot more senstivie to the things you say.

Please don't come to this board anymore and use the word "coloured". If your post was intended as a joke. Do not play with such issues.

Rodney


MADMonte64
Global user
(6/6/00 7:56:34 am)
204.168.51.148
Jona23: w/ea. post U R more like the bitter Finley
Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 8:03:00 am)
63.71.228.4
You are So Right, Lopez

I did leave off many bi-racial people who are probably considered as Black by the Whites because of their skin color. I'm sure the Whites embrace Dan O'Brian, Olympic decathalete, as one of their own, like Ms. Carey apparently is, because of his "features", but regard Shemar Moore, star of the daytime soap opera 'The Young And The Restless' and host of Soul train, as just another Black man because of his more ethnic features.

You make a very good point about the remarks from non-US residents. PLease see my post below to Marcus who was hopefully drunk or inebriated in someway when he fired off that ridiculous post to me below.

Also, your points about MAriah are spot on. I will not enter the Mariah debate today because I'm already a little heated at MArcus's comments below but boy am I well armed. This is a Whitney board and there is no need to invite what could turn out to be a barage of stupid posts.

Rodney

Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 8:23:02 am)
63.71.228.4
Luvlyldy, We Are On The Same Page

Yes, my father and many of his family was an extremely fair-skinned man with staright hair. If you saw some of his younger pictures like when he was in the Army, you'd swear it was a White man. MAny of his family membersd are fair-skinned with straight hair, you;d swear they were LAtino ot something. He use to say there was NAtive American in our family tree. I have no idea becasue I wasn't there :-) But that fact does not afford me the right to say that I'm Native American or White because I might have this featiure or that one that is not usually associated with me when I both of my parents are BLAck and my Father's and his relative's parents are Black.

I will not discuss how I feel about Ms. CArey but trust me.......your thoughts are similar to mine.

Rodney

JRKing
Global user
(6/6/00 8:25:35 am)
24.229.46.120
The longest thread in Classic Whitney history?
Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 8:37:23 am)
63.71.228.4
Whatever. Your Response has Nothing to do with my

post. I was discussing how the pesron to which I responded considered Mariah as White. Not once did I mention how Mariah sings, looks, dresses, etc. Maybe your post should have been directed to that person. So what was your point? Actually, everything you said in the post should have been directed to that person since that person considers MAriah White obviously because of her lack of or her blindness to certain ethnic features, since your multi-ethnic background doesn't matter to you. You cannot tell me how I can feel about a person. Actually, it sounds as if you are ashamed of your "mulit-racial" background since you don't think it should matter and don't feel the need to announce it. You're right that it shouldn't matter but why hide it? So, when a person you come in contact with makes a very derogatory comment about one of the ethnic groups you belong to does it not offend you, do you make your dislike of the comment known? If you tell that person right up front about your mulit-ethnic background, then it will save both of you some heartache.

Rodney

lopez
Administrator
(6/6/00 8:40:55 am)
205.188.195.38
Re: Hey Lydia!

I agree with you and I'm glad that this thread hasn't gotten too personal with personal attacks while people agree and disagree with each other.

p.s. Hope that your house search is going well.
MLIYL

Acoustic
Local user
(6/6/00 8:58:45 am)
139.134.35.66
Sorry but I just happened to hit REPLY after

reading your post. My post was in now way directed at your comments. If it was, I would have been sure to have included your name in my post.

But now that you started it, you assume that I am ashamed of my multi-racial background. I am who I am. I put being a person first and foremost above anything else. And I don't hide my multi-racial background. Even if I wanted to, I can't. It's right there with me wherever I go. It stares back at me when I look in the mirror. I feel it when I walk down the street. So don't dare assume that I am ashamed and trying to hide who I am. This world obsesses too much about skin color and races. I don't need to add to that obsession by forever informing people about my heritage. It's not up to them to accept it, it's up to me. And I do.

When someone makes a racist remark, I ignore it and walk the other way. People are who they are. They can only change when they open their eyes. I'm not the type who tries to make another a better person. Besides the fact that no-one but that person can do that, it's not my place. They have to want to open their eyes.

Know me before you lay out your assumptions.

lopez
Administrator
(6/6/00 9:04:25 am)
205.188.195.38
Re: Rodney, I was very moved

When I saw Marcus' reply, i was tempted to fire of a reply but I chose instead to run an errand and get some fresh air.

I read your retort and there really isn't anything left to add. Your post was very comprehensive and thorough while still being sensitive to all the other cultures represented at this site.

p.s. to Marcus, btw, your statement that you are Jewish reminds me of people who say, 'i have a lot of Black and Latino friends'. Also, any award show that features Whitney gets covered here or mentioned here. sometimes people miss it.

This thread has really grown from Whitney and Anita baker to race relations, myths and perceptions. Wow!

Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 9:26:51 am)
63.71.228.4
Also....

Kenny G, who is White and JEWISH, has won several Soul Train Awards. So what were you saying about color?

Rodney

Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 9:27:33 am)
63.71.228.4
Thanks, Lopez NT
Blackatlantic
Local user
(6/6/00 9:28:21 am)
12.75.153.153
Blaming the Victim

I haven't had time to weigh in on this exchange, but I've been following it quite closely from the sidelines. I applaud Monte's sharp, thoughtful response to Marc200's predictable diatribe on Whitney's alleged personal failings. My regret, however, is that Marc200's standard, neoconservative "blame-the-victim" canard has turned what was a refreshing discussion about systemic racism and the persisting racial double standards of American celebrity culture into another round about Whitney's individual behavior. Monte valiantly has tried to steer us back on course. Reasonable minds can disagree about how Whitney has responded to this latest spate of invidious rumors about her personal life, but there is no denying the undercurrent of racism in the media muckraking and public humiliation she has suffered these last six months. That was the subtle meaning in Anita Baker's comments and we ought not lose sight of it. The distortions and lack of proportionality in the tabloid media's "coverage" of her alleged problems only prove just how expendable black celebrities still are in American culture: three generations to produce a Whitney Houston, but a meager six months to savage her and do potentially irreparable damage to a sterling career--O. J. Simpson and Mike Tyson will perhaps never recover; Whitney may still have a chance. But no black celebrity should have to prove her worth, dignity, moral probity, or whatever this way. I feel as if I'm witness to a "high-tech lynching." Clarence Thomas misapproprated that phrase when her suffered his own (self-imposed) public humiliation years ago, but it seems an uncomfortably apt description for Whitney's latest travails in the press.

Allow me one last point. Marc200 hails LH and DC as lofty role models whose example Whitney has failed to follow. His point seems to be that these latter day black celebrities managed quiet grace and dignity in the face of blatant racism. Does anyone else appreciate the irony in this observation? Whitney has put up a dam of dignified silence in the face of invidious, racially tinged rumors and innuedo. Only two months ago she managed a poised, graceful, glittering performance at the Arista Anniversary Special in the midst of the media maelstorm. In short, she has withstood this campaign of public humiliation with dignity and grace. Yet, the rumors have presisted, the public hanging has proceeded, and only last week the tabloid headlines screamed that her death was imminent. Three generations to produce a Whitney Houston, a mere six months to savage her.

letrice
Local user
(6/6/00 9:57:04 am)
198.109.44.2
Excellant points Rodney (nt)
MADMonte64
Global user
(6/6/00 10:32:50 am)
204.168.51.148
The irony was not lost on me...

..but thanks for making explicit note of it. It's so easy to leave out piquant details when their is so much meaty info to digest -- and we've only brushed the surface...! :)

lopez
Administrator
(6/6/00 11:22:08 am)
205.188.195.36
Re: Also....What of the Latin Grammy awards

I know this topic has veered slightly of the original post but I think that it all ties in at some point. People who don't want to read this thread or who can't handle it,(not that anyone has complained yet) should just ignore it but I'm hoping that everyone reads this thread. It is quite an eye opener on how people feel about race and entertainment/ers.

Marcus, I would like to know how you feel about the New Latin Grammy awards and all the other shows which honor Latinos? Seriously, i'm very interested in your veiws.

NAACP
Just to inform you, (I'mnot sure if you're aware), the NAACP is not primarily about an award show that is held once a year.(This award show is also about everyday people who are making a difference in their community...the it takes a village concept as espouced(sp?) by Hillary Clinton) It's a very old institution that dates back many, many years. It is headquartered in Baltimore, MD, where I live and is run by Kweisi Mfume (an ex Congressman). It is about providing a voice for Black minorities or issues that may be important to them and providing legal recourse. It insist impart because of minority discrimination that takes/took place in parts of the country an that would not get the time of day or national attention if an organization such as the NAACP didn't step in to focus on it or to provide legal help. Monte pointed out the horrors of Abna Louima, the Diallo case and just this week on tv, thanks to a police camera, the running over by a policeman of a 12year old girl foot intentionally. The NAACP is also instrumental in voter registration drives for their communities and nationwide. They were also instrumental in getting behind why Black churches were being torched in the South. Most importantly, it is a national voice with chapters all over the USA. They also do a lot of work for the youth. The award show is but a fly in the cap of the works that they really do. It's primarily a civil rights instituition and it serves a purpose. I just wrote this because I think that you were being too flippant about the NAACP and I'm not sure if you truly understand what it stands for.

I also wonder how you feel about the Black Caucus and the Hispanic Caucus in the United States Congress. It is clear to me that these splinter organizations exist to focus on the issues important to their constituents that may or may not get the attention of the overall Congress body.

Award Shows-
I happen to disagree about the Latin Grammy Awards and i'm on record for this. I think this show is the trailblazer and should be as inclusive as possile. I would hate to see an African-American Grammy or an Asian Grammy. I have no problems with other shows being formed or carried on i.e. Soultrain etc. Of note, both the NAACp Award show and the Essence Awards invite people of oher races and ethnic backgrounds to perform i.e. Crystal Lewis, Christing Aguilera and others.

Marucs, u stated:***
Can you imagine the uproar if anyone tried to introduce an award for white entertainers etc.?

**I won't go into this again, other posters have appropriately pointed out The Oscars and in an off base but just as appropriate network tv as Quent noted.

I won't for a second dispute that some races have been savagely discriminated against, but surely if true equality of the races is to be achieved, we shouldn't encourage or condone anything that serves to perpetuate the segregation of people based on the colour of their skin, should we?


**This statement is very disturbing. IMO, shows like STMA, Essence Awards, NAACP, the ALMA and other HIspanic awards don't do this. They celebrate the talent in their culture, fund educational programs for the youth, focus on talent in their community which otherwise wouln't be noted on the reall 'big' mainstream shows. I applaud this. I would have a problem if entertainers from other cultures wasn't invited or excluded but they aren't. While, admittedly there aren't many non-minorities who have won these awards, there are some. By comparison, very few winners and nominees from the Oscars come to mind and everytime I think of Angela Bassett, I feel every emotion possible. This lady is by far one of the best female actors of any race, definitely Meryl Streep caliber and she can't get decent acting roles. Why is that? That's another subject for another day. However, bring it back to Whitney, it is because of her movie TBG to a large degree that the few movies that are being made with Black actresses are hapenning. She remains the only Black actress who can green light a movie by any of the big movie houses in a starring role. I think these are some of the subtle things that Anita Baker was referring to. People shouldn't forget this an the rush to anialate her has far reaching consequences.

It takes a NAACP award to recognize Angela Basset. I'm not even going to go into how her caricature for 'What's love got to do with it' was changed because of her ethnic features as was Jennifer Lopez's for one of her movies (her big butt was digitally altered to appear smaller.)

You won't see Barbra Streisand winning an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Female Artist - not because she's not an outstanding female artist, but because she is not coloured. That is discrimination.

**This is perhaps the most eyeopenning statement made by you and I can see how people are justifiably upset about this. This sounds like the same red herring argument used in the reverse discrimination arguments and proposition 201(not surei fthat is the #) in California. I can't believe that you wrote that. Discrimination is all about power and it is clear who has it. Read up on Sammy Davis Jr, Lena Horne, Ella, Sarah, Dinah, and the countless other minority acts an what they went through. I just read over your thread and I'm still tripping that you made those remarks. You live in Australia and I would never presume to dictate to you how your country is run or the people received (other minorities).



Finally, it is because of reasons like George Michael winning an award for R*B that shows like the NAACP and Soul Train exist. I mean, I like GM but best R*B........
Really, there is a multitude of minority talent out there who would not get noticed if not for these shows.

Edited by lopez at: 6/6/00 11:22:08 am

Quent
Global user
(6/6/00 10:59:28 am)
216.67.71.237
Rodney, Just keep on telling it like it is!

I can tell you that on more than one occasion I have had to just back away from the keyboard, and say "Quent don't even go there." To say that some of the posts in this thread have strummed a nerve or two is putting it mildly. I am glad that you took the time refute some the ridiculous assertions laid out in the preceding post. It just kills me every time the baseless complaint is trotted out about the furor and uproar that would be created if there were White Entertainment awards or White Entertainment Television. The obtuseness of some people just slaps you in the face like a sledgehammer. They make these statements knowing full well but clearly not understanding or capable of empathizing with the history of horrendous and unspeakable indignities endured and the obstacles minorities have had to overcome in this country just to have an opportunity to be seen and/or heard.

Further they choose to ignore, as you pointed out, that major award shows were created by and for white artists and entertainers, run by white executives to be marketed to a predominately white audiences. In case some are not getting what I am saying, here it is in a nutshell. THE MAJOR AWARD SHOWS WERE FOUNDED AS, SERVED AS AND YES STILL REMAIN IN LARGE PART DE FACTO WHITE ENTERTAINMENT AWARDS. Just as much as the major networks still serve as White Entertainment Television. Oh sure there have been strides made by blacks and other minorities in gaining recognition within many of these institutions, but it still only amounts to throwing the dog a bone. Mostly attempts to mollify when a big enough stink is raised. Thus in these cases the most worthy artistic endeavors by blacks and other minorities are still shunned. Luvlyldy makes a great point that though Cuba Gooding Jr. won the Oscar for his performance in Jerry Maguire it was far from being an Oscar caliber role or performance. I am not saying it wasn't an excellent performance by Gooding, but just that it was not Oscar worthy. The performance that Gooding won for as well as Whoopi Goldberg, Ghost, are consistent with the type bufoonish, clownish, caricatures of ourselves that mainstream media and audiences are typically willing to accept and award blacks and minorities for.

Continuing on! If blacks and minorities allowed only the parts of their art deemed palatable by mainstream media to be recognized and eschewed the rest, then that would be allowing white mainstream media to define black and or minority culture. So to say that blacks and other minorities are fostering racism and prejudice by taking refuge, solace and comfort in their own and by recognizing the achievements of their own which are not readily and/or openly embraced by mainstream is inane. With that standard you would not get equality but rather assimilation. I could say more but it is lunchtime and I am very hungry.

That's my word! Can you dig it?

letrice
Local user
(6/6/00 12:14:34 pm)
198.109.44.2
Excellant post Quent....

I find this whole thread fascinating, as Lydia said Whitney should be proud of the fans that she has attracted...the cream of the crop!!!!!!!!! This thread represents the real world not some sugar coated fantasy. I hope people continue to follow this thread it has a significant place and its important for this bbs. Two America's exist one black and one white this is the reality.

mg
Local user
(6/6/00 12:27:50 pm)
204.174.244.18
a new fan club.

i want to start a new fan club in appreciation of monte and black atlantic. i have little to say since they so aptly nail every point i consider with ease, grace and wit. this is by far, the best thread i've ever read on this site. thanks folks. even those i disagree with are always an enjoyable, though frustrating, read.

blackatlantic. i believe that whitney's dam of silence is the most effective and dignified treatment that she can give this tempest. i do not believe that words from WH will mend the public's distorted perception - she would inevitably appear as defensive and implicitly guilty. two things she does not need to invest her time in portraying. i believe she knows this. it's about the work and the music, and her best bet is to do as she does. forge ahead. work hard. give the public what they want. and not engage in this festival of daggers.

and i assert again, that any harm inflicted during this period, should not all be written off as permanently damaging. though it is underscored by racist methodology and perception (intentially and incidentally) this is a an unfortunate stage in the celebrity gameboard (though I agree there are different boards for others) and WH will make it through. as much as we (though i'm no american) love to hate and hate to love, we feel mildly inexistent without stars to live through, love through, hate through and ultimately, survive through. it's an unfortunate arc, and whitney's hanging at the apex.

Deborah
Local user
(6/6/00 12:31:17 pm)
213.46.29.155

If ever there was an intelligent and important

tread, this is it. Rodney, I couldn't have said it better myself. It's funny how misinformed alot of people are about other races and cultures.

~It's Fine
Fine, Fine, Fine, Fine~

letrice
Local user
(6/6/00 12:32:39 pm)
198.109.44.2
Brillant ....mg include

yourself in that fanclub bravo!

Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 12:50:27 pm)
63.71.228.4
Very Informative Post. Thanks for Adding Your

welcomed insight.

All of those organizations that you listed that are geared toward helping the minority are forthright and work in the public eye with no hidden ulterior motives, unlike the Ku klux klan who hide under the veil of white sheets and hoods, racist skinheads, and the crop of white separatist groups springing up throughout the U.S.

I could go on and on. This topic has me so worked up, especially after that last post I ubmitted. I could have taken on Mike Tyson. Lord knows I hate running and it seems it takes forever for me to complete my planned distance. But today I breezed through my planned distance because I was so heated up from this debate. It was over in not time. I could have run a marathon easily. Talking about working off tension....

Rodney

jona23
Global user
(6/6/00 12:58:19 pm)
62.7.62.158
i dont recALL thAT

i dont recall i said everything in the media is true.......but there ias never no smoke without fire................they have there sources form somewhere...........and if there wern't a slight truth in these accusations then dont you think whitney would press charges............she isnt cos it partly is.................and all the die hard fans must face this

Rodney1
Global user
(6/6/00 1:00:13 pm)
63.71.228.4
I Knew There was Another Point That Luvlydy Made

that I agreed with and I see you agreed as well. I did not think Cuba Gooding, Jr.'s performance in 'Jerry McQuire' was worthy either and never understood why Whoopi got her's for 'Ghost'. I don't think their parts were a stretch for either of the two. It didn't even excite me that Cuba won back in 1997(?).

Rodney

Leigh W
Global user
(6/6/00 1:09:30 pm)
209.153.233.235
I thank you Quent...

for quieting my anger. Many of the issues being addressed here on Classic Whitney are just that "Classic". Never could I find such insightful and intelligent posts on any other site, Whitney or whomever! Thank you for your frank rebuttal! Some of us get a little too emotional and "fired up" to post replies. Count me in among this group.
Again, I thank you Quent, Lopez, Rodney, BA, Deborah, Letrice, Mg, Marcus(yes you too! ) because you've all opened up the eyes of many who may have never discussed such issues. I am so proud to be a part of Classic Whitney.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/6/00 3:02:38 pm)
205.188.195.42
Humble thanks, mg. Bravo to all of us.

I must confess that I am a bit embarrassed by your having singled me out (w/BA) for special mention. There have been so many delightful & insightful posts from others such as Manish, Lopez, Rodney, Quent &, of course, you, who, I am pleased to note, have been increasingly finding your own articulate voice to contribute to these provocative threads. Any accolades must be generously shared. (And let the pettifoggers be damned by WH's "dam of silence"!)

Back to work. Will check in later.

Health & peace.

Tyron00
Global user
(6/6/00 3:18:53 pm)
63.144.144.98
Very interesting quote that speaks volume

I was reading reviews of the Greatest Hits cd on amazon.com and this person quotes best describes Whitney. "Sometimes in the history of star-making there are those who have to claw and scrape for everything they get. Whitney Houston is not one of those people, she was destined to be a star from the minute she was born (and those are the ones society wants to tear apart the worse)."

Blackatlantic
Local user
(6/6/00 5:41:14 pm)
129.105.139.131
Thanks, MG. Cheers to us all. Here's to more...

threads like this one! Manish and Lopez have provided us with a great forum.

BA

ps. And echoing Monte, I'm glad to see you add your voice to the cacophony. As I've said before, it's always a pleasure to read your posts.

mg
Local user
(6/6/00 6:05:56 pm)
199.60.226.117
....et al.

you're welcome. i didn't intend to shift this solidly evolving thread into a luv-affair but i had to express my
enjoyment of certain posts. of course, as always, everyone is a welcome read. my reason, often, for not posting
myself is tempered by time, work, and of course, the ever present accurate, rational and open-minded presence
of lopez, manish et al. what a team. especially throughout this thread.

ok. enough schmaltz. i'll go back to my own "dam of silence."

mg.

marc200
Global user
(6/6/00 6:37:43 pm)
209.179.235.145
Re: To Marc2000: From Monte: Nobility&Obligation

Monte - you have tangentially enlarged this discussion beyond the scope of my initial comments.

As you know, the civil rights struggle was waged on many levels. I am sure that you understand that everyone involved in the civil rights movement was not able to make a contribution as profound and lasting as that of Rosa Parks. Every black person of that day, regardless of their means or status, was committed to the idea that their children should enjoy greater freedom. It was a personal struggle. Therefore, it is indeed insulting to suggest that Lena and Diahann (or a schoolteacher or a domestic or any other woman who was not Rosa Parks) had a lesser commitment to creating change in any way that was available to them. You are attempting to make exclusive something that was the very fabric of life for black people of that era. Grass roots activism is not the only way to create change.

You obviously know nothing about Lena Horne. Lena Horne was THROWN OUT of Hollywood precisely because she would not bite her tongue. Lena Horne spoke at the March on Washington, she traveled to Mississippi in 1963 to perform at a voter registration drive organized by Medgar Evers, she "integrated" most of the hotels on the Las Vegas strip by refusing to perform unless her musicians were allowed accommodations and, best of all, in 1959 she publicly slapped a white man in the face for calling her a "n*gger". All of these events are well-documented parts of Lena Horne's history. Where is the "grinning and bearing" or "public deferential courtesy" or "saintly patience" in any of these actions???? Her personal and political ideology was NOT informed by some "white man's standard of proper public conduct".

There is no "slippery slope" here, counsel.

Furthermore, Whitney Houston made reference only to Lena Horne and Diahann Carroll, so did I. I made no statements regarding the scores of other black entertainers working at that time and waging their own personal battles. I said nothing to belittle their efforts. I agree with your statements regarding their significance.

Additionally, you have mischaractercized my statement that "we are living in an age of greater tolerance and forgiveness of perceived moral turpitude." That statement means that the public is more tolerant and accepting of things that were at one time considered categorically immoral such as drug abuse and adultery. I did not say, or imply, that we are living in an age of greater "racial" tolerance. I don't believe that is true, and it could not have been reasonably inferred from that statement.

However, it is true that wealth and celebrity are proven weapons against racism, and your example proves the point. If O.J. Simpson were not famous and wealthy, his reputation would be the least of his worries because he would most certainly be in prison. U.S. prisons are filled with black men who were convicted for crimes that they did not commit and on even more flimsy evidence than was on display at Mike Tyson's criminal trial. Similarly, if any black women other than Whitney Houston had been caught with marijuana in her luggage she would have been detained, strip-searched and possibly jailed, no questions asked. Celebrity and wealth definitely accord privileges that most of us do not enjoy.

I do not believe that Whitney needs to be "brought to her knees", and I have never said anything remotely to that effect. However, Whitney Houston has made some bad choices and, arguably, she is suffering the consequences of those choices, as any of us would. Yes, the media is racist. Yes, it is unfair they are attacking her. But is it really just because of racism? Where is Whitney's culpability in what is happening? There are some who have incorrectly labeled this line of reasoning as "blaming the victim", but it has much more to do with the "law of natural consequences": do something bad, you get punished. I do not believe Whitney deserves to be "punished" (and certainly not to the degree she is catching it), but I also resent the suggestion that this attack on Whitney is substantially attributable to racism. That is simply not true, and it undermines the reality of those of us who are truly victimized by racism; rather than by some questionable combination of indifference, poor judgment AND racism.


Marcus
Local user
(6/6/00 7:25:37 pm)
203.101.120.49
*sigh*

Rodney, please have someone explain to you the meaning of the "wink" ;-) symbol - it could have saved you a hell of a lot of trouble!

I apologise for suggesting that people were unaware of Whitney's win at the NAACP Image Awards 2000 - the award is not listed among Whitney's achievements on Manish's comprehensive awards section, so I figured he wasn't aware of it. Not my fault if he's too slack to update regularly ;-) See?? The wink!!!! If Manish takes this comment seriously, then I give up!

Coloured people.

As I said yesterday: "of 'coloured' background (I dislike that term immensely)". You must have missed that. You chose to accuse me of demonstrating a lack of vocabulary there, when all I was doing was adopting the vernacular of the NAACP - the National Association for the Advancement of COLORED People!!!!! For the sake of consistency, I was using the same term used by the organisation in charge of the awards ceremony I was discussing. I even identified my intense dislike for the expression! Others have used the term "non-coloured" since my original post, yet you haven't attacked them. I find all racially discriminatory terms offensive, and avoid using them. I don't refer to African Americans as "blacks". I don't refer to myself as white. I don't quite understand your willingness to pigeon hole me as being of a certain mentality when all I've done is (reluctantly) use an expression contained in the title of a respected organisation.

I suspect that some of you were so enraged by some of my comments that you didn't bother to fully read or comprehend what I was actually saying. Not for one second did I try to ignore the atrocious treatment of some of the races in the past. I made that perfectly clear, or so I thought. Still, I have been accused of not fully comprehending what has occurred in the past.

When the Grammys, the Oscars etc. were developed, the world was a different place, yes. That has no bearing on my assertion that there would be a major uproar if someone attempted to introduce an award solely for caucasian people *today*. If any of you truly believe that in today's world, such an award would be endorsed by society as being non-racist or non-segregational, then I question your understanding of the world today.

I don't have a problem with the Soul Train Awards. As Rodney and others have pointed out, they recognise achievement in the field of R&B Music (let's not forget that as recently as the 80s, R&B Music was referred to by Billboard as Black Music - thank God they got rid of that insulting title!). They do not make their list of nominees solely on the basis of the colour of a person's skin. The NAACP Image awards do just that. Many recipients of these awards have stated that the award means more to them because they "come from us". This in itself is a racist comment. I understand the original need for the awards, but will there come a day when the awards are recognised as helping to perpetuate the segregation of the races? Whitney Houston and Madonna can both compete for Grammys, but when it comes the th NAACP Image Awards, only Whitney has a chance, because of her race. Is this equality? No.

I wish the world could view and treat everybody equally, regardless of racial background, gender, sexuality etc. I disagree with awards that deem anyone ineligible for nomination on the basis of their racial background. The Grammys do not do this. People will jump down my throat and claim that they are essentially the "White Music Awards", but this is simply not true. Lauryn Hill, Whitney Houston, Michael Jackson, Boyz II Men, Quincy Jones...the list goes on and on and on...do the achievements of these artists mean nothing to you? 40 years ago, they may not have been considered for awards, but today, they are. Doesn't this say something?

I identified myself as Jewish to refute Lopez's claim that I obviously know nothing about being discriminated against. I didn't intend for it to cause such a big deal. Rodney, I don't quite understand your diatribe about the Holocaust Museum, as it really has nothing to do with awards ceremonies. Is there not a museum devoted to African American history? If not, I'm surprised, and I'd be interested to know why, as that in itself is a discriminatory act.

Actors and actresses who are not worthy win awards all the time, regardless of their racial background. This cannot be made into an issue of race. I'm certain Cuba and Whoopie were delighted with their Academy Awards. In 1990 and 1997, their performances were considered the best in their field. Whether they were better than a performance by another actor/actress in another year is completely irrelevant. Whether you think someone did a better job in that field in those years is irrelevant, too. When it all boils down, the Academy considered the performances of those two actors to be the most outstanding in their field in that year. It's sad that some people want to dismiss the achievements of two fine actors based on their race.

In essence, I understand cultural and racial diversity. I embrace cultural and racial diversity. I support and actively promote the establishment of a society in which racial and cultural diversity aren't the cause of discrimination. I loathe the term "coloured" in reference to people (please, NAACP, consider a change of name, so that I never have to use the term again). I dislike awards ceremonies where people of a certain racial background are ineligible for nomination. I am a decent person! I regret the anger I have caused.

luvlyldy 
Local user
(6/6/00 7:45:21 pm)
205.188.197.22
Re: *sigh*

"the Academy considered the performances of those two actors to be the most outstanding in their field in that year. It's sad that some people want to dismiss the achievements of two fine actors based on their race."

Marcus, I can't speak for anyone else, however, it is my assumption that the achievements of Whoopi and Cuba are not being dismissed. As I stated earlier, Cuba's performance was not OSCAR worthy. This accolade was a token gesture on the Academy's part. And, I, for one am able to call a spade a spade (no pun intended).

I think Rodney posted (if it wasn't Rodney, I apologise, this thread is now 5 pages long - to lazy to go back & research )that their roles were the "stereotypical" bufoonery that we are all used to being only roles meant for African Americans. These are also the only roles that many of the Hollywood execs recognize as being worthy material for "us". I truly don't remember who were up for awards during that time frame but rest assured there had to have been something better than:
1. A jock screaming "sho me tha money" while standing around in his BVD's.


Marcus
Local user
(6/6/00 8:01:03 pm)
203.101.120.49
Tokenism

By claiming that the Oscars awarded to Whoopie and Cuba are "token" awards, you are *completely* trivialising the work of those two actors. In any case, your opinion of their performances is just that - opinion! Who are we to say whether there were better performances that year or not? We're certainly not experts.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/7/00 12:03:51 am)
152.163.207.181
Hope to address the transparent distortions later.
luvlyldy 
Local user
(6/7/00 4:05:23 am)
205.188.196.31
Re: Tokenism

You're so correct in saying my opinion is just that - my opinion - of which you've offered many yourself!!!! Check out your Guy Ritchie interpretations. Hmmmmmm???? If you can try to rationalize those statements when it was blatantly obvious what he meant, I definitely see where your head is.

At no time, did I trivialize the accomplishments of these actors. It's great to see them on film and it's also great to see them recognized. However, a token gesture is, was, and will always be noted for what it is - a token gesture. If I recall correctly, the Academy was under a great deal of pressure from African American actors when Whoopi won her OSCAR. I, for one, enjoyed her performances in movies such as Clara's Heart, Sister Act 2, Corrina, Corrina and felt she offered much more than that of Ghost.

Anytime I can see a major black actor/actress in a role which offers substance and not bufoonery, I'm for it. "We" get enough of that on regular television (i.e. Martin, The Wayans, In Living Color, etc...). Let's face it, as a side kick "we're" the first choice; as the first one to get killed in a movie "we're" the first choice (I call it the Cripus Attucks Syndrome), drug dealer; "we're" the first choice; clowns/buffoons, "we're" the first ones, and the list goes on.

The only time any of "us" get star billing is when it's a African American production or an African American cast. Let me give you a prime example, just recently I viewed Songs of the Heart with Meryl Streep. When I picked up the movie, I had no idea Angela Bassett was in it and appeared in it about 60% of the time. Guess who got billing? Meryl Streep & Gloria Estefan. Angela has most certainly paid her dues. Why does she take backseat to Gloria, who was obviously making her acting debut in this picture?

So, no I do not trivialize anything concerning my fellow brethrens & sisters (anything positive that is). I'm just woman enough to call it what it is - a token gesture on the Academy's part to appease a community. Award it when it warrants it (i.e. Denzel's portrayal in the Hurricane).

Marcus
Local user
(6/7/00 5:17:03 am)
203.101.121.154
Again....

It's just your *opinion* that the awards were merely token gestures!!! You really don't see that you're belittling the honour bestowed upon Cuba and Whoopie by insisting that this is the case, do you?

Whoopie's competition in 1990 was as follows:

Annette Benning (The Drifters)
Lorraine Bracco (Goodfellas)
Diane Ladd (Wild At Heart)
Mary McDonnell (Dances With Wolves)

Which of those actresses do you believe *should* have won the Oscar, given than Whoopie didn't deserve it as hers was merely a token award?

I don't have the nominees for 1997 at hand.

As for Angela Bassett in "Music of the Heart", perhaps she didn't want billing? All sorts of deals go on when contracts are signed etc. Billing certainly isn't everything.

Denzel Washington was unlucky to be nominated in a year where there were so many strong performances by leading actors. In any other year, he may easily have won, but this year, the competition was tough. That doesn't mean that he didn't do a brilliant job, though. It just means that more members of the Academy thought that someone else did a better job.

Olugbenga
Global user
(6/7/00 5:58:24 am)
172.137.78.99
Re: Anita Baker's comments on WH on the Newsfile

I have simply grown tired of reading that post below. Never have so many emotions come to my brain at once. Over the last few days I have been reading the post that stemned from Anita Baker’s comments and I have felt shock, horror, admiration and frustration. I have been having exams (in fact I have one tomorrow) so I have tried to keep away from this topic, but I cannot any longer.

Let me first clarify my position. I do not live in America, but in London and I am black (100% African). Even though I do not live there, often an outsider’s opinion can offer a new perspective on the way America has treated Whitney. When I first heard the allegations about Whitney, I did not have any particular views, and I still don’t because she has not said anything regarding the issue(s). Whilst I love Whitney very much and I am very aware both of the breadth of her skills and the impact she has had on society, I still prefer to keep an open mind rather than just dismiss any side of the story. However any sane human being can see when people begin to go over the top. The implication by Anita Baker of racism by the media does not really surprise me. I think she has done well to highlight an issue which has gone unquestioned for too long.

When we did black history at school, I took a natural eagerness to it. But the horrors of the things that took place still shock me. The worst part of it is that people do not recognise the impact these events are still having today. I do not wish to spark further segregation, but comparing the holocaust to slavery highlights even more inequalities. Look at the events that have taken place since the holocaust to in effect say sorry to the people who suffered, and then compare this to the events that have taken place since slavery. America is undoubtedly a country with an extremely wide variety of people. But unlike Marcus, I believe that the hatred and racism of yesterday have not decreased. Rather it is wearing a different coat. Minorities have been supressed, harassed, abused, degraded and killed for years, and many people forget that racism is not just about actions: abuse can be mental as well as physical and the mental manifestations of racism are rife throughout society.

I get annoyed at the foolishness of people’s comments when they ask why Whitney has not responded to the allegations. I say why respond? She has been doing this for most of her career, and still all sorts of runors have persisted. If she responds it will make no difference to the situation whatsoever. It will just keep refreshing the story and it will not go away because you cannot force people to believe you. This alone is evidence that a response would not be the right move. I agree so much with the view that people are noticing that Whitney is up there with the legends, and they want to try and tear her down. They understand the breadth of her impact on music and film. No other person has done for these industries what Whitney has (whether consciously or not). When I see certain people on this board constantly trying to prove that Whitney is ‘not a big deal’ I see a microcosm of the attitudes of people who harbour a twisted jealousy. The fact that Whitney is black makes it easier because then the hate is able to come more ‘naturally’, and through racism they can appeal to people’s prejudices. This may be a reason why more people in music have not come forward as Anita has. Though some may not be white, they still have the capacity to harbour that jealousy. Additionally they may actually want to see her fall. The sooner people open their eyes and see what is really going on, the closer we will come to realising that there is still much more to be done. These latest events are not (as some believe) reflections on Whitney, but reflections of society.

Peace

P.S. Manish, Lopez, Monte,BA, Rodney, Quent, mg you took the words right out of my mouth. Its good to know that in this world, there are at least a few people with brains.

Author Subject
Rodney1
Global user
(6/7/00 6:08:03 am)
63.71.228.4
Marcus, You're Coming Off As Being Very Sarcastic

That "*sigh*" gives me the impression that you just don't care. I said that I couldn't tell if your post was a joke or not. Even if it was you shouldn't play such issues. I even said that you mae a few good points and that I agreed with you but some of your other comments were just intolerable.

I said that I somewhat agree and even had the conversation with someone once before that we have such award shows and organzations specifcally for BLacks (African-Americans) but that it would not be tolerated if it was the other way around . I like Lopez, don't agree that there should be a Latino Grammys, a Black Grammys, a NAtive American Grammys, etc. SInce they have now instituted a LAtino Grammys, will they still also be allowed to receive a regular Grammy in the categories created for them as well as receive a Latino Grammy when those awards are broadcast or will the LAtino categories in the regular grammys be discontinued? I'm not sure if these issues have been addressed and if so, anyone should feel free to educate me on them. Regardless of certain groups being singled out with special organzations or awards, the comforting fact is that are KEY DIFFERENCES and those KEY DIFFERENCES ARE 1.) such organizations are utilized for the "Advancement" for these minorities and not to hold them back or to take anything away from the majority, which is White, and are basically needed for our politicians and leaders, whether they are CEO's/Presidents of companies, universities or higher educational institutions, etc, to be kept in check and amde sure that we are treated fairly and 2.) such organizations work in the public eye with no hidden agendas or illegal activity.

For example, if a Black (African-American) star, man or woman, has a White spouse, that white spouse is accepted and it would not hinder that person from being honored by the NAACP Image Awards or hinder him from being helped by any of those organizations in a time of need. IBut the way an organization such as the Ku Klux Klan works is that if a White person was to marry a non-White that person would be ostracized. Do you see the difference? Anyway, although you are right that it would be atrocious to introduce an awrd specifially for Whites or Whites only,there is no need to do anything like that because WHites are going to get there's regardless of the inclusion of Blacks (African-Americans) in those awards since they are the majority, they hold the majority of the positions/offices that decide such outcomes, whther it's a critic or a voter and they basically are the dominant group in that particuar field whether it's art, politics, etc. Yes awards such as Grammys or Oscars given to the Black artists mean a lot because they, as minorities, won those awards competing against the majority, the Whites. So thoe achievements mean so very much.

And as far as you using the word "coloured" you are wrong any way you look at it. Sure "coloured" is in the title of the NAACP and, yes, the NAACP name is dated. (I knew you weer going to use the fact that "coloured" is in the title as your excuse.) However, it is still unaceptable to refer to people of color as "coloured". In this ase your reluctance to use the word should have won over the decision to use that word. Even if th NAAP never changes its name, you still should not use the word, esepcially in a public forum. You can do what you want behind closed doors, chatting up your mate, or just hanging with your family that may have the exact same views or opinions as you do, or having a beer with your mates in secluded quarters, but just don't use it in a public forum such as this. Just friendly advice.

Finally, I read your post several times. Your accusation that I and others "ignored" or misunderstood what you were sayng is not true. I even stated that you made some good points and that I partially agreed with you in some instances. But that still does not mean I have to sit quietly and read your comments that were wrong or upset me and others. Perhaps instead of the "wink" [;-)] that you sued you should have said "Only kidding". Still it was no joking matter. At least you expressed your regret for the anger you caused. Some people would not have done that. But i have to question it's genuineness because I didn't see an apology. Hopefully, we can put this to rest.

Rodney

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/7/00 9:29:14 am)
204.168.51.148
Facts & Figures for Perspective

Marcus, in the 72-year history of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, members have seen fit to honor only 5 black actors of potentially 272 opportunities -- less than 2% -- making the Oscars more than 98% mighty white.

The 5 black winners are as follows:
Hattie McDaniel in 1939 as Best Supporting Actress for her role as Scarlett O'Hara's servant in Gone w/the Wind;
Whoopi Goldberg 51 years later in 1990 in the same category for her comic relief in Ghost;
Sidney Poitier in 1963 as Best Actor for his emasculated nobility in Lilies of the Field;
Denzel Washington in 1989 as Best Supporting Actor for his brilliant, searing performance as an heroic soldier in Glory;
and Cuba Gooding, Jr., in the same category in 1996 as the *second banana* in Jerry Maguire.

The record for Latinos, Asians & other non-white actors is even worse.

The Oscars purport not to discriminate, but the reality indicates that their policy is nothing if essentially lip service. Non-white actors should not have to feel grateful for these token scraps that serve to appease white consciences & to attempt to deflect criticism of exclusivity. Non-white minorities, thankfully not so willfully ignorant to accept these lame rationalizations, have taken the initiative to create their own ceremonies, such as the NAACP & the IMAGE awards, to ensure that the achievements of non-white actors are duly recognized & celebrated. Otherwise, they would remain overlooked & marginalized into obscurity. Redressing gross inequities is not racist: it is necessary for survival.

Am I clear enough?

lopez
Administrator
(6/7/00 9:44:56 am)
205.188.199.166
Re: Wow, Ben!

You're right! This thread has sparked lots of emotions and it has also enlightened me to how people feel and certain perceptions that they have.

I've also enjoyed and taken something from all of the posts, even the ones I disagreed with.

However, I have big problems with a certain person thinking that the NAACP practices reverse discrimination. The rationale behind this thought is really, really over the top.

lydia m h
Global user
(6/7/00 10:13:01 am)
12.25.156.127
Hi Lopez

Yes i know it is great, iam just reading myself because i can relate to alot of things that everyone is saying about racisim, being that i was born in 1/3/64 and coming from a mix family, my brothes were darker than myself, we us to get called all kinds of things when they would take there baby sister to the park or even to the moves if you know what i mean, but i learned to deal with it and for that i think that made me a better and stronger woman of color, but i was tought to look inside of a person not there skin color but, the world is made up off all kinds of people, and some just dont have the brains to figure it out,the media is the down fall of all america because they are the ones that bill you up and they are the ones that will knock you down and they are trying very hard to do that with Whitney, but me myself iam glad she is staying silent because no matter what she says at this point the media will turn it around, the only bad part about it is for kids like my daughter that are crazy about whitney and she has to see this attack on her in the papers and a little boy at her school knows she is crazy about whitney brings every bad article about whitney and puts it on her desk, just to see if she will cry, so i had to put a stop to that you dont mess with my baby girl, because you will have to take me on, and you dont want to mess with fire.Jessica wrote a essay on whitney and got it published so iam very proud of my little girl i just wish she wasnt going through this right now because kids can be so mean.Today before whe went to school she said mom what will the papers say about whitney today, i wish she would sue them for what they are saying about her, she said something to me that hit home and almost made me cry, she said if iam feeling sad about what people are saying about whitney, how do the media thinks that Bobbi kris is feeling. and i just looked at her and gave her a big huge and said whitney will make it through and she will take care of Bobbi Kris the way i take care of you, and then she said, ok well then i know bobbi kris will be ok because you take good care of me because you love me and i know whitney loves bobbi kris.Then she said god want give her more than she can handle, sometime my kids shock me with the things that come out of there mouth, but how true was jessica on that qoute. peace and love to all.
PS iam still looking for a house and i will be leaving on the 30 so i want get to go to the concert

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/7/00 10:34:38 am)
204.168.51.148
Ben:thnx 4 the heartening equanimity & perspicuity
Quent
Global user
(6/7/00 12:05:44 pm)
216.67.71.67
Re: Again....You are still missing the point!

Luvlyldy nor I am trivializing or marginalizing the achievements of Gooding JR or Goldberg when we deem them not the worthiest performances, but rather we are contextualizing the circumstances and the piecemeal fashion in which the academy chooses to dole out laudatory achievement awards to black artistic endeavors. Monte has given you hard incontrovertible proof. In the 72-year history of the Academy Awards, they have only deemed 5 performances by actors and actresses of African American dissent meritorious of award. This alone should attest and bespeak to the fact that the Oscars have functionally served as the White Entertainment Awards, though it goes much deeper than this.

That's my word! Can you dig it?

Quent
Global user
(6/7/00 12:14:38 pm)
216.67.71.67
Ooops....

Forgive my malaprop that should be descent and not dissent. I hope the correction adds cogency to my post.

That's my word! Can you dig it?

Turbo Power
Global user
(6/7/00 12:49:43 pm)
149.159.13.69
I hate when the race issue pops up but it is......

....really always there, just lurking in the shadows. I hate that comment that Manish made about "white" artists such as Mariah speaking up on Whitney's behalf when Mariah is multi-racial, which she does acknowledge. I think that's the equavilent as saying "Mariah doesn't act "black" enough." I remember people completely dissing Mariah (not online, but offline) because they said she was trying to be "black" in Butterfly. Those are all racist comments, including Manish's original comment, if you ask me. I think people need to stop thinking that R&B is for "blacks" and Pop is for "whites". Comments like, "Oh that white girl can sing black!" need to go or comments like "that white girl is trying to be black" or vice versa as in Whitney's case. I remember people dissing Whitney back in the day because she didn't sing "black" music. I heard similar comments when Pink came out. People asked about whether she was white or black and I was like, does it matter so long as she can sing? See, I don't mind people asking that question, but it's the stereotypes that are associated with that question. It becomes more like "Why is she trying to sing like she is black when she is white?" Please no more racist comments. While there are differences between races, it is stereotypical and very offensive to hear rude comments like that. There is no "acting" white or "acting" black.

marcu5 
Global user
(6/7/00 2:12:01 pm)
195.92.67.38
Bewildered, amazed, flabbergasted!

Having read through most of the posts below, I’m somewhat bewildered by the widespread, fundamental need to view the world though monochrome eyes, in this day and age.

As a mixed race person (Caribbean/English) growing up in a predominantly white area I was verbally and physically abused because I was considered black. However at university to some, I wasn’t black enough. I overheard endless comments about how too many black people were dating white people and even how the race should be kept ‘pure’, undermining my whole existence.

Whilst I acknowledge that the cards are stacked in favour of those of ‘white’ appearance and culture, (hence the need for such institutions as the NAACP) I resent oversimplification of the race issue, as evident in some of the posts. While sweeping generalisations are easy to make, they bear no reflection to the reality of the situation.

There is a post below with is a long list of mixed race people and whether they should be considered ‘black’ or not, with particular reference to Mariah. Mixed race identity can be a very complex and dynamic. With regards to Mariah, (or anyone else of mixed race) I would say that her identity is her business and is not for others to dictate. To me there is no more annoying question a person can ask me than 'Do you see yourself as black or white?'

I was flabbergasted by the comment that in the US there was some reaction to The Bodyguard because Kevin kissed a black woman. My dad was kissing a black woman in 1964 for goodness sake! And even more astounded by several black people attributing their lighter skin to the ‘slave masters visiting the slave hut’. Yes this happened, but consensual relationships were also forged, as they have for centuries, and it will only increase in the future. Here in the UK, over 50% of children born to black people are of mixed race, and you can certainly look forward to more ‘brown’ children in the US. OK we’re not the happy clappy children of legend who will unite the world, but we’re a start.

As far as Whitney is concerned, be in no doubt that all that is happening right now can be attributed at least in part to her skin colour. She has had her own struggles to be accepted, not only by white people, but by black people also. I remember a time when she was criticised by many black people for ‘sounding too white’ – an accusation that has been levelled at me, not in singing terms but in the way I speak!

My point is, everyone should try to take off those monochrome, tunnel vision specs next time they take issue with the world.

Peace to all, whatever race (or races) you may be!

marcu5

luvlyldy 
Local user
(6/7/00 2:42:17 pm)
64.12.105.158
Re: Facts & Figures for Perspective

MADMONTE, RODNEY, & QUENT - THANK YOU TO NO ENDS!!! I REALLY FELT AS IF I WAS BEATING MY HEAD AGAINST THE WALL.

MARCUS - OBVIOUSLY WE DON'T AGREE, SO, LET'S JUST AGREE TO DISAGREE. FOR THE RECORD, I DO NOT TRIVIALIZE ANY OF WHOOPI'S & CUBA GOODING'S ACHIEVEMENTS. AS I'VE STATED, THEY WERE TOKEN GESTURES ON THE ACADAMY'S PART, AND I CAN SEE THAT I'M NOT ALONE ON THIS ONE.

IF YOU CAN ATTEMPT TO JUSTIFY A THINLY VEILED RACIAL SLUR SUCH AS THE ONE GUY RITCHIE MADE, THEN, I CAN FULLY UNDERSTAND YOUR STANCE ON THIS ISSUE.

I BOW OUT!!!!!

Marcus
Local user
(6/7/00 6:03:22 pm)
203.101.121.47
Rest? I think not!

Rodney, I won't put this to rest when you suggest that I am being sarcastic and insincere!

When someone is exasperated or being misunderstood, it is a common reaction to sigh, is it not? I sighed because I was being attacked and people didn't appear to be understanding my points. I wasn't sighing to indicate sarcasm on my part! Would you have been happier if I'd said "You just don't get it, do you?!" or "Will you please listen to me?!"?

I will not accept your attack on me for my use of the term "coloured". It's clear that you don't believe that I do *not* use the term with my friends, colleagues etc., nor do I use the terms "black" and "white" (as you did so freely in your post), but it's the truth. My reason for using the term in my original post was exactly as I have stated, although I suspect you suspect that I used this as a convenient excuse. I actually find the term "black" as offensive as "coloured". You won't be seeing me use either expression again, but not because of your attack on me. You have major issues with the term adopted by NAACP - does it offend you every time the acronym is written in full?

My use of the "wink" related solely to my assertion that I was more informed than you about certain issues - that was it! I don't know whether you think I was referring to my whole post, though....I wasn't, if that's the case.

My regret was sincere, Rodney. It bothers me that you question my motives, and it seems that no matter what I say, you have me branded and will doubt my every move. This is OK, as you don't know me, but I feel that my use of one expression has skewed your perception of me. I'm not going to use the tired scapegoat "I have African-American friends!" or anything like that to try to make you understand me better, because the simple fact is, I don't have any such friends. Why not? Because there aren't that many African-Americans in Australia!! I have Fijian and Indian friends, but no African ones. So I'll just have to accept that you don't believe me...even though I don't recall giving you a reason to doubt my word.

I appreciate some of the clarifications you made in your last post, Rodney. You've always struck me as a fair-minded sort of person, and your last post was rational and thoughtful. As I said before, I fully understand the need for the introduction of the NAACP Image Awards, but I am still entitled to question their contribution (or lack thereof) to race relations, aren't I? Regardless of their intent, they are an awards ceremony that discriminates on the basis of race. Yes, many of the awardees probably wouldn't be recognised without those awards, but then again, there are countless caucasians who, in spite of their talent, are never given the recognition due to them. Still, the awards have a purpose, and they bring a lot of joy to a lot of people, which is always a good thing.

The Ku Klux Klan are offensive in the extreme. There is no correlation between them and awards ceremonies! You didn't need to use them to make any sort of point, Rodney! Please don't tell me you suspected I needed some sort of "wake up call" regarding them??!!

As I said before, I very much regret the anger I caused. I apologise for my use of a term that offended you, and I do accept that you will not accept my explanation for the use of the term.

Anyway, that's enough from me! I bet you wish I'd just stuck to defending Madonna, hey??!! ;-) (i.e. I'M JOKING!!! )







MADMonte64
Global user
(6/7/00 6:26:54 pm)
152.163.207.204
Like a lovelylady, you bow out w/grace. :)
Marcus
Local user
(6/7/00 6:33:13 pm)
203.101.121.59
Facts and Figures

So 272 African American actors have been nominated for Academy Awards? That's an interesting statistic. 13% of the US population is of African-American descent. This does not, however, mean that 13% of all nominees should be of African-American descent, because the awards are based on performance in a certain year. Still, if we're talking statistics, 4/5 nominees each year will probably be Caucasian, since this group makes up over 80% of the population of the US. Let's not forget, though, that the Academy Awards aren't limited to American nominees, are they? What would you consider to be a fair proportion for the breakdown of nominees each year? Any more than one African-American nomination per category per year and you're infinging on someone else's "territory", so to speak. Is that what you want to happen?

Luvlyldy keeps harping on about Guy Ritchie and my rationalisation (or, rather, suggested explanation) of his comments. It's interesting how so many Americans have gotten all worked up about his comments when he was actually praising African-American actors...or did you miss that? I don't expect a response, though, as you've "bowed out" of the discussion.

I firmly believe that until someone you actually think is deserving of a win, wins, you won't believe that the awards are not biased or racially prejudiced. That's fine - you can believe what you want! As for the statistics, I don't think it's completely fair to analyse them for the entire history of the awards, since the world was a different place in the 1930s, when the awards were introduced. Racial segregation was still at a peak then, so for Hattie McDaniel to even be nominated for an award, let alone win one, is a remarkable statement.

I get the impression that some people would be happier if African-Americans were *never* honoured or nominated by the Academy, because even when they are, the awards are seen as mere token gestures. In any case, does it really matter?? The NAACP awards exist, and the "majority" can't win any of those, so who needs to worry about the Academy anyway?????



lydia m h
Global user
(6/7/00 6:59:08 pm)
12.25.156.109
Great post but boy it is getting deep in here

Well lopez i just read all the post on the board today because ive been home sick in bed for two days, so i thought i would come to the board to read something good to feel better, man it is getting deep in here with the race card but you brought up some good points, girl i dont know how you and rodney find the time to write on the board all the time and keep a level head with some of the post that are poping up on this board that is why i read alot and dont answer, because i cant keep my cool as of lately. i guess with a move in front on me in a few weeks iam suprised i can think straight. but i tip my hat to you, girl you are good i mean damm good, and reading your post have made me keep my cool alot of times, so keep it up. it will be one of the reason that i cant wait to get back on the net when i move, and like i said before some people just dont get it, because they havent lived it and boy walk a day in my shoes in the 60' and they will never forget the pain that i went through as a little girl of mixed parents a spainsh/white mother and a british /jamaican father, me being light with curly redish sandy brown hair and my brothers being darker skined with curly black hair and the only kids in a catholic school of color it was a total of four of us my three brothers and me. man did we get picked on but you know what it made me the strong woman that iam today, people say iam a bitch because i know what i want and dont let them run all over me, so if iam a bitch ,then like i tell them then iam the biggest bitch that they will every come across and that is why iam the boss and they work for me! so sometime i think that is why people do the things that they do because they dont understand one another, that is what this world need more people to understand how everyone feels and no two people are alike, no matter what color they are we are all human and our blood is the same color when we bleed. but whitney will be stronger for what she is undergoing with the media god want let any person take on more than they can handle.racism is everywhere and it will always be around and now days they have different ways of attacking people and bring them down faster since we have the internet, but whitney can take care of whitney i just hope she has the strength to take care of her little girl as well because the media is hitting hard and dont seem to be letting up and six months is a long time for a little child to be hearing bad things about your parents everyday there is something new that they have to explain to her everyday so i say lets pray that i will be over soon for this family from my heart to the Brown family stay strong god and love will save the day . god bless all of you today and always.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/7/00 8:24:35 pm)
152.163.207.212
Uh, 272 is not the # of nominees!

272 represents the combined total of all the acting categories for which awards have been given since the inception of the Academy Awards. I haven't researched the # of non-white nominees, but it is likely in the neighborhood of two dozen in 1088 -- again about a mere 2%.

Rewarding Hattie McDaniels' performance in the role of a slave who is happy to serve her mistress was the industry's *remarkable* way of reminding blacks of their *place*. Recognition of DW's performance in Glory is the only 1 of the 5 that legitimately deviated from this pattern.

If you think that GR's implication that articulate black men are not authentically black is a compliment, and if you truly believe that any of us would be happier if the Academy never again honored a non-white artist, then perhaps you ought to look into investing some $ for racial sensitivity training....

Miss Chelsea
Local user
(6/7/00 11:25:02 pm)
199.107.32.47
You overlooked ...

Louis Gossett, Jr., who won the best supporting actor award for "Officer and a Gentleman." His performance was inspired and he wholly deserved the award. Whoopi Goldberg turned lackluster into blockbuster in a movie whose only asset outside of Whoopi was Demi Moore's newly cropped hair and, in the process, stole the picture right out from under the biggest female movie star at the time. When a supporting character carries a movie, you better believe the actor filling that role is doing a damn good job. Cuba Gooding, Jr. somehow managed to bring nuance to and render downright complex a character who could have so easily been a cliche -- no one deserved that Oscar more than he did that year. (I wish he would have been nominated for As Good as It Gets the following year. I think he's an incredible actor.) There's certainly no arguing that black and other non-white people have been underrepresented when it comes to recognition by the Academy (I believe there have been about 25-30 nominations of non-white people in the four acting categories in the past 20 years: that's one percent of all the nominees -- and if you're a non-white woman, forget about it: you were either Whoopi, Angela, Alfre or you appeared in the movie "The Color Purple"; otherwise, you weren't nominated). However, it's my opinion that you're being rather pedantic when you assert that the white Academy has only given its black nominees awards when they've acted the part the Academy believes befits a black person's "place" in society.

The Oscars will always be an easy target for assertions of racial bias because the Oscars will always be an easy target for assertions of any kind of politicking and bias. (This past year it was the bias against aging female actors -- with Meryl Streep at the impossible age of what, 52? -- serving as grandmother to most of the rest of the youthful best/best supporting actress nominees.) The real problem stretches out many miles away from the offices of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. There's a limited pool of movies to choose from, and I'm not contending their choices have been beyond reproach, but I'm hopeful that as more movies on diverse subjects are produced and more people of color are cast in the meatier kinds of roles that tend to garner Academy attention -- and as American moviegoers embrace these trends, things will change.

Marcus
Local user
(6/8/00 1:22:10 am)
203.101.121.168
Further...

Do you honestly believe that the Adacemy awarded Hattie McDaniel that year to remind African-Americans of their "place"? You do have some major issues, don't you? Perish the thought that the woman may actually have *deserved* her award for being an outstanding actress!!!

Thanks to Miss Chelsea for lending support to my argument (only in the context of the "tokenism" issue, though - I'm in no way suggesting that she agrees with absolutely anything else that I have said!!!).

As for Guy Ritchie, he didn't want articulate actors!! That was his point. Had he been trying to cast caucasian hoodlums and all he could find were Shakespearean thespians, he may well have made the same complaint about caucasians! Who knows? As for Americans, he was suggesting that American actors were more capable than the ones he had seen in the UK - African-American actors, that is. See the compliment? No? Oh well! Some of you sure like to read a lot into things, don't you??!!

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/8/00 1:24:01 am)
152.163.206.189
Oops! How'd I leave out Lou Gossett,Jr, in 1982?!

Despite my oversight -- a function of haste -- his inclusion does not alter the percentages or the significance of the numbers.

How am I being pedantic in my contention that most of the roles by non-white actors recognized by the Academy pander to comfortable stereotypes? I don't believe I've unduly emphasized any petty issue in my argument. The Academy is an easy target because the evidence underscores its reputation for incestuous reactionary politics. (Recent consecutive wins by Mira Sorvino, Gwyneth Paltrow & Angelina Jolie -- daughters all of overlooked but respected veteran actors -- epitomize this syndrome).

Moreover, I am commenting on the type of role, not on the quality of performance. CG is a brilliant actor; I'm not questioning his talent. His role in Jerry Maguire is a caricature (the wisecracking, mugging sidekick), but CG skillfully adds depth to a stock character that would have been one-dimensional in lesser hands. Still, the character remains a caricature -- albeit a nuanced one. The same can be said for all the other non-white winning roles, w/the exception of Denzel Washington's.

I beg to differ that there is any problem w/a lack of choices: there are hundreds of films made each year, many of which are provocative, moving, insightful & subversive -- but they are simply ignored. Check out the Independent Film Awards for an alternative look at what the Oscars could & should be.

Health & peace.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/8/00 1:28:42 am)
152.163.206.189
I'll keep my issues over your deep denial anyday.
Rodney1
Global user
(6/8/00 7:05:54 am)
63.71.228.4
Marcus, I haven't Attacked You. Perhaps We Are

both misunderstanding the "written word" and the writing styles of each other. Ok ay, I will be big enough to say that maybe I misundertood your "*sigh*" and again maybe you would have been better off using "Will you please just listen to me?". And why you insist that I am attacking you is beyond me. During myy first post I was angry but never nasty or insensitive of which I could accuse you but over the course of the few days that this thread has taken place I have cooled down a bit but I am still frustrated at some of the things that have been said whther you were not intending to be insensitive or rude. Agiain, it boils down to writing styles.

I see you have just as much distaste for the word "Black" and my use of it as I do for your use of the word "coloured". I'm not even sure if I want to get into that conversation of why I try to use both. I'm just not convinced of the "correctness" of that term to label, describe, categorize, etc. people's whose descendants originated in Africa. Perhaps you or someone else who might be reading this post can educate me. I had a friend who mostly blew hot air. We rarely agreed on anything and basically whatever he said went in my one ear and out of the other. Maybe I shouldn't say that because I am an excellent listener but this person was so volatile that it was hard to debate anything with him, let alone carry on simple conversation. He cursed like no one's business in simple discussions which always bothered me so that's why our discussions were always filled with tensioned and became very heated. BUT he told me why he didn't like or accept the term "African-American" to desribe him or the rest of the Black Americans that live in the United States. His asseertion was that he was not born in Africa and also that there were Caucasions who also live in Africa and that when they come here to this country, they are not called, labeled, described, categorized, etc. as African-Americans because they are Caucasion. So why should "Black" or "people of color" be labeled "African-American". Webster's II New Riverside University Dictionary defines "African" as adj. Of or relating to Africa or any of its peoples and langauges -n 1. person born or living in Africa. 2. A member of oneo fthe indegenous peoples of Africa. So after reading that 2nd definition of "a person born or living in Africa", what does that make a caucasion "born or living in Africa" then moves to this country? What do they call Blacks who live in Australia, England, German, Switzerland, etc? Do you see my point? For some reason the Caucasions in Africa are called Afrikaner and is defined as "Afrikaans-speaking descendant of the Dutch settlers of South Africa". But what are other people in Africa who aren't descendants of the Dutch called? Now do you see why I am inclined to use both "Black" and "African-American " because I'm not sure if either term is acceptable or how others feel about the terms.

A far as our different perspectives on the NAACP and its awards are concerned, I give up. And after all of my above posts and you still don't understand the "correlation" between the NAACP and the Ku KKlux Klan, I am at my wit's end and don't know what I can do to make you understand. At least you understand why the NAACP exists. I don't understand why you don't understand why their awards exist or their reasons for giving awards. You continuosuly say that a Caucasion cannot or does not receive an NAACP Image Award after I have given you proof of non-Black nominees and even non-Black winners such as the Steven Spielberg, AN EXTREMELY RICH AND POWERFUL JEWISH MAN IN HOLLYWOOD who doesn't need an NAACP Image Award to make his life complete considering he has everything and even has been honored by Jewish organizations for his outstanding work. Still the NAACP gave him an award that you say only is given to Blacks/African-Americans, because they saw something in his work or thought he had done a great deed to TRY and make this world a better place. You must understand that the NAACP Image Awards, as Lopez so wonderfully explained, are not only given for music or movies but also and most importantly for the good that PEOPLE do, socially and politically, not just for what Black people or African American. do Yes, you're right...you do have the right "to question their contribution (or lack thereof)" to race relations" but why you still question them after I and so many others have tried to explain it to you is just beyond me.

I accept your apology.

Rodney

Marcus
Local user
(6/8/00 6:06:40 am)
203.101.120.176
What Am I Denying? NT
Rodney1
Global user
(6/8/00 6:25:52 am)
63.71.228.4
I Am the One Who Provided The long list of Mixed

race, specifcally biracial, people and I THINK you misunderstood my purpose for providing such a list. The person that I responded to admitted to being White and in their post they referred to Mariah as White (not to sure of their exact words but read it for yourself). I was basically asking why non-Black people, not necessarily White people, but since that person who wrote the post was White, consider Mariah White. Is it possibly because she is very fair when I would just about bet everything I own that they consider other biracial people like Mariah (See the list) as Black because their skin tone is darker or more closely similar to if not the same to Blacks of supposedly no multi-ethnic backgrounds (both parents ae Black). If that is the reason then it is sort of stupid because there are some Blacks who look like Mariah who are not mixed (both parents are Black but could have some other ethnicities in their bloodline). I did not provide that list to decide on "whether they SHOULD be considered "black" or not". The post or the list was not to question those mixed race people on what they consider themselves but to question a non-Black or Caucasion person, like the one who made the post, on why or what gives them the right to consider Mariah White and what do they consider people of similar multi-racial backgrounds who were darker skinned. Did you notice how that person failed to or didn't bother to answer the question or debate the issue?

Rodney

letrice
Local user
(6/8/00 7:53:04 am)
198.109.44.2
I cannot believe how much this thread

has helped me to cope with the media rape of Whitney Houston. I am truly thinking clearly now without tears. Tears only slow you down. I am ready to walk now I will never take the bus again. I know it will take me longer to get to my destination but that is the price that I will have to pay. Really guys, walking is not that bad of course I will have to get up earlier and prepare my children for the journey the weather can be treacherous. While we are walking I will try to make it enjoyable for them, we will laugh and talk and we will truly get to know and love and respect nature and hopefully breath some fresh air any air is better than those horrid bus fumes. I thank all of the participants of this thread.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/8/00 7:53:30 am)
204.168.51.148
The pervasive influence of racism, subtle&obvious.
lopez
Administrator
(6/8/00 8:36:28 am)
152.163.194.176
Re: Lydia, GEt WELL!!!!

Hi lady. I just want to wish you well and hope u recover soon. I read your post and I thought that was the deepest post that you have ever written here and it was very heartfelt. Thanks for sharing a part of your life with us. Also, u're right, I firmly believe that God doesn't give one more than they can handle. I wouldn't want to be in Whit's shoes right now. She is being massacred. I always send a little prayer for her and her family that she can keep it together.

You know, this thread has been such an eyeopener for me and like LEtrice said, it's actually helped me to put in context what is going on here in the media. I mean, I watched ET last night and the Editor said that Whitney is at a really great point in her career...she is still selling out concerts and her new album is doing great, perhaps that is why she feels she doesn't need help. This is what he said and I hope that I'm wrong but I hope he wasn't suggesting or contributing to her career downfall so that they can write another story that her career is over.

Letrice, I've had to tie my fingers down like Lydia over some of the things being sai here but Monte is holding it down!!!

lopez
Administrator
(6/8/00 9:22:54 am)
152.163.194.176
Re: Marcus, it is comments like this one that.....

makes your protests and denial ring hollow.
*********************************************************
....As I said before, I fully understand the need for the introduction of the NAACP Image Awards, but I am still entitled to question their contribution (or lack thereof) to race relations, aren't I? Regardless of their intent, they are an awards ceremony that discriminates on the basis of race. Yes, many of the awardees probably wouldn't be recognised without those awards, but then again, there are countless caucasians who, in spite of their talent, are never given the recognition due to them. Still, the awards have a purpose, and they bring a lot of joy to a lot of people, which is always a good thing.................
***********************************************************

Actually, I agree that you shouldn't give it a rest. I think that the more typing you do, u continually show what you truly believe and maybe when you're all done, u'll be shown to be the emperor with no clothes.

I really can't believe that you could say that you have a legitimate basis to question their contributions to race relations. But then again, I guess that I can understand your comments seeing that you are sitting in Australia many thousands of miles away from America. I've tried to explain to you the history of the NAACP institution and the type work that they do and you still don't get it. Again, the NAACP awards is but a small part of what the NAACP stands for. If you are suggesting that when police brutality (which seems to be on the rise to me)against minorities, subtle and obvious discrimination perpetrated against minorities still occur here and the NAACP is perhaps one of the only organizations that someone can turn to to get legal representation or to focus the media on a situation that they are not helping race relations, then perhaps you just don't get it and won't anytime soon.

I hate to do this but your failure to truly comprehend what the NAACP is all about precludes that I do this. I guess you don't call focusing on the killing of Edgar Metzgar(s?) an the four little Black girls who were killed in Alabama helping race relations. The NAACP was the leading organization fighting for the inclusion of more minority oriented tv programming(not just Black....BTW, Rodney, I concur with you about the term A-American) and the colour-out of the Oscars, I say that they were helping race relations. Why, when I turn on tv(which is rare) do I constantly have to see caricatures and buffoon charachters on tv. Case in point, The Fox network, when it first started was built on the backs of minority commedy i.e. In Living Colour, Martin etc. As soon as Fox got to a successful point, we see a marked shift in the type of programs and syndications that they do- mostly caucasian shows. Why is this? UPN sprung up wiht more Black programmingbut I personally dislike seeing shows like 'Eddie', 'Moesha' 'The Parkers' etc. I would like to see more Latino/as and Asian shows or even actors onthe tv screen. This is one issue in which th eNAACP and a contingent of Hispanich influential leaders have brought dialogue and focus to. Is this not helping race relations.

Voter registration
Setting up and carrying out voter registration drives in the community so that minorites can vote and affect what haens in their neighborhoods by ensuring that they vote in the person who has the best agenda for their neighborhood,in the long run this does help race relations becuase they assist in getting more minorities elected to the government body.

Telling a child or an adult at an award ceremony, hey I see what you are doing and I think that you ought to be recognized for that(never mind that you are not famous) goes along way in building someone's self esteem so they don't have to feel inferior or have doubts about their abilities when they are out in the melting pot called AMErica.

Again, I put to you that there are other minority awards who do the same thing i.e. Hispanics and I don't have a problem with this. It is not just the NAACP awards who do this. In addition, the fact that hundreds of movies will be made this year and only but a few roles will go to minorities and fewer than few will be nominated for any of the major acting awards or will be marginalized/categorized in specific genres at the Grammys is reason enough to have separate programming to recognize these actors/actresses/musicians/singers work. You questioned Rodney about his KKK comparison but really, how is this any different from college campuses who have all kinds of separate funding or avenues to gain admittance to their institution i.e. the Greek Society, Italian daughters, Jewish ancestry, African-American Award of Merit, descendants of ......., this is the same thing!

IN ADDITION, fyi, if you are a Native American in this country that affords you special privileges(rightfully so) to make up for some of the truly horrible things they had to endure or was done to them by Europeans (founding fathers etc) who first came here. They have the right to have their own reservations, judge themselves(to a degree), special tax privileges and programs. Asians(forgive me for generalizing but I believe it is Koreans but I'm not exactly sure) also get special business treatement through goverment programs (loans) based upon the Korean-American war. There is no such programs that i know off to make up for Slavery. Therefore, it is organizations like the NAACP that step in to be that voice for the underepresented. I may not agree with all their polices but to suggest that they don't contribute to race relations is ludicrous. I suggest that you come over to this country, paint your face brown and see how you are treated....better yet, write Oprah and buy the tape to see what occured when they did this little experiment.

I could go on and on but I'll stop here. You claim that you are misunderstood but you do no oneor yourself any good when you put out statements like the one you did which only highlights that you don't have a complete grasp about issues like race relations or racisms in THIS United States. You may know more about what goes on in Australia but in this country, you're way off base.

I guess you don't understand why the 'Negro' is in the United Negro College Fund's name also that Whitney lends her time to and constantly funds and you probably won't understand why historically Black colleges like Morgan State, bethune Cookman or Spellman University exists! But that's another issue.....



.s. Sorry to posters for going slightlyoff topic but statements like the one above won't go unchallenged by me.

Edited by lopez at: 6/8/00 9:22:54 am

Rodney1
Global user
(6/8/00 2:34:16 pm)
63.71.228.4
Thank you For such an in-depth explanation

you're so much better at saying what I've been trying to get across to him. Very good post!

Rodney

luvlyldy
Local user
(6/8/00 3:37:21 pm)
152.163.213.191
Re: Like a lovelylady, you bow out w/grace. :)

MADMONTE , you're just tooooooo coooool. Thanx

Manish 
Administrator
(6/8/00 3:45:42 pm)
212.211.16.102
Are You Calling Me A Racist?

Quote:


....really always there, just lurking in the shadows. I hate that comment that Manish made about "white" artists such as Mariah speaking up on Whitney's behalf when Mariah is multi-racial, which she does acknowledge. I think that's the equavilent as saying "Mariah doesn't act "black" enough." I remember people completely dissing Mariah (not online, but offline) because they said she was trying to be "black" in Butterfly.




I have to say that it's a bit sickening that people are taking singular comments which make up a complete picture and addressing those because they refer unfavourably to their favourite artist as opposed to speaking about the actual issue at hand. What I did was provide examples of my comments using comments about Mariah Carey and Madonna (other part of this superb discussion) however you have come from a Mariah board just to ring rings round her and the Madonna fans who live here have decided to run rings round the Guy Richie issue.

For the record, *once again*, Mariah is only black when it suits her in my opinion. You only have to look at the videos for Honey and My All as proof. She's dancing away with black men but when she finally finds her "Honey" he's some white guy! When has her leading man ever been anything but white? I'm certainly not saying anything like "Mariah isn't acting black enough", that's just rubbish. What I am saying is that Mariah is being very savvy about her image in the media. I'm not going to get into this one much more. I've said my bit on it. This is only distracting from the comments from Anita Baker which you choose not to offer an opinion on.

Quote:


Those are all racist comments, including Manish's original comment, if you ask me.




There's nothing racist about my comment at all. You've just taken offence because I used Mariah's name. That's what it comes down to. Why haven't you addressed anything else? No point of view? Perhaps you agree with the media's treatment of Whitney Houston and cannot see any racial undertones (should that be overtones?!) in what is happening here.

Quote:


I remember people dissing Whitney back in the day because she didn't sing "black" music. I heard similar comments when Pink came out. People asked about whether she was white or black and I was like, does it matter so long as she can sing? See, I don't mind people asking that question, but it's the stereotypes that are associated with that question. It becomes more like "Why is she trying to sing like she is black when she is white?" Please no more racist comments. While there are differences between races, it is stereotypical and very offensive to hear rude comments like that. There is no "acting" white or "acting" black.




How infuriating!! You're asking for no more racist comments when the very topic at hand is about the racist media and their treatment of Whitney Houston! If you're such an expert, why have you not discussed this?

OpenHeart&Mind - learn it well.

Manish.




Manish 
Administrator
(6/8/00 3:57:25 pm)
212.211.16.102
Thank You Monte!!

I am simply stunned at some of the opinions here. I'm sure the people who recognise the racism aren't forcing their opinons on anyone but certainly the people who do not see a racist ploy in this whole situation are defensive and in some kind of denial. This is the way the game works.

It's too easy to draw comparisons to the problems encountered by MJ (racism on top of an already media-ready story) and George Michael (homophobic and relentless media coverage).

Sadly, with people like Marcus, the issue at hand isn't even about racism - it's about Whitney Vs. Madonna and that's as deep as it goes. I've no doubt that if Madonna were to call Whitney a "nigger" live on national television, he'd try and convince us it wasn't racist. I'm perplexed at how people have not seen all the signs, subtle and blatant in-yer-face commentary which has been relentless. It more than confirm the racist nature of what's happening here. To brush it aside and dismiss it the way it has been by certain individuals is the very kind of racism at play in trying to bring Whitney down.

OpenHeart&Mind,

Manish.

marcu5 
Global user
(6/8/00 5:55:52 pm)
195.92.67.39
Rodney1, apologies....

...when I came to read the thread for the first time it was already so huge it was hard to separate all the issues and who said what. Sorry I misunderstood. You made some great points!

mliyl
marcu5

Marcus
Local user
(6/8/00 6:06:41 pm)
203.101.122.124
This is Ludicrous!!!

Why can't anyone comprehend that I DO NOT HAVE AN ISSUE WITH NAACP AS AN ORGANISATION???!!! Lopez, I sat here reading your post in stunned silence. I fail to see why my questioning of the contribution made to race relations by the IMAGE AWARDS prompted you to explain in minute detail the general workings of NAACP. Not for one second do I deny the need for NAACP and I certainly do not need to be told that racial crimes are still committed all over the world. Why do people keep refusing to see that my issue is with the Image Awards and nothing else? No one can deny that they discriminate on the basis of racial background. That is my issue. Two American girls growing up together in the same neighbourhood, one caucasian, the other of minority descent. Both aspire to be actors. Both have enormous talent. Both can dream of winning Emmys and Academy Awards. Only one can dream of winning a NAACP Image Award. Why? Because her racial background precludes her from being nominated. People of certain racial backgrounds are eligible to win any award, while people of *one* particular background are not. Is this racial equality? No, it is not.

Will there ever be a day when the races are treated equally? That should be the aim.

Marcus
Local user
(6/8/00 6:19:14 pm)
203.101.122.124
Whitney vs Madonna

Manish, I cannot believe that you have dismissed everything I've said by claiming that for me, it all boils down to Whitney vs Madonna. Monte, others and I were discussing the Academy Awards, yet you bring up Madonna! It seems to me that you go out of your way to bring her up, even when no one else is even talking about her.

I would be absolutely stunned and mortified if Madonna called Whitney a "nigger". You silence throughout this whole debate surprised me, but what surprises me even more is that you choose to re-enter it with such inane comments. How intelligent to dismiss someone's entire argument with "Oh for him it's all about Whitney and Madonna....if Madonna called Whitney a 'nigger', he'd find a way to justify it!" Can't you come up with something more valid than that?

Get over Madonna, Manish. She has nothing to do with this discussion.

Marcus
Local user
(6/8/00 6:34:07 pm)
203.101.122.124
OK

I understand your use of the term "black" - in this age of intense politcal-correctness, it's hard to know what's acceptable and what isn't. In any case, in my experience it's OK for a "black" person to refer to themselves as such, but it's not OK for a "white" person to call them that....just as gay people don't always like it when others call them faggots, but they can call themselves that whenever they like! Consistency would be nice in the world! Of course, my beliefs mean nothing, because for me, it's all about Madonna Vs. Whitney, right?! ;-)

I know Steven Spielberg was awarded an Image Award - I brought it up in my initial post. My point was relating to the "regular" awards - Best Actress, Most Outstanding Female Singer etc. Caucasians are simply not eligible for nomination for those awards. The only time a caucasian person will win an Image Award is when the committee decides that they've done something extraordinary to promote racial equality.

I'm looking at things from a very simplistic viewpoint, possibly too simplistic. The saddest thing is that in the year 2000, in spite of the efforts of so many people, the races are still segregated, and will remain so for a very long time.

Thanks you for accepting my apology, Rodney. I think you're about the only person on this board who would bother giving me the time of day right now! After all, I'm just a lowly Madonna fan with no valid opinion, aren't I? ;-)

Turbo Power
Global user
(6/8/00 8:27:59 pm)
149.159.13.69
I didn't say you are a racist, I said...

...that you made racist comments, which don't make you a racist, just ignorant. Please don't think just because I am a Mariah fan that makes my comments any less important. I don't want to fight with you because I truly enjoy this board. This whole thread was great to read, but I believe people have made ignorant racist comments. There's nothing wrong with being ignorant--it just means that you are uninformed. The fact that you said something about Mariah makes no difference to me. It's the racist part that offends me.

As for Anita's comments, I commend her for standing up for Whitney I hope Whitney takes the next step and speaks up for herself sooner or later, no matter what the backlash is. As for Whitney's "friends" standing up for her, I believe that just because you are a friend, it doesn't mean you know all the facts.

Manish, I don't want to be on your bad side--not because you are the owner of the board--(well, maybe a little)--but I love to read your insightful posts. We have barely interacted and I didn't want to start out on the wrong foot. Peace out

Manish 
Administrator
(6/9/00 11:39:14 am)
212.211.12.69
Struck A Nerve?

Marcus,

Clearly, it is you who is focusing on Madonna, not I. In fact, your last post replying to me was specifically drawing on Madonna and GR when it was clear to all that the post was bigger than that and Madonna & GR were just a very small reference in that.

I have not had the time to respond to every single post here. I think I have made some valid contributions to this thread - certainly others seem to think so - so there is no perception of 'silence' on my part. If you read the 2/3 posts I have made, you'll find them to be quite comprehensive about my opinions on this. It don't take me 30 posts...

OpenHeart&Mind,

Manish.

lydia m h
Global user
(6/9/00 2:46:34 pm)
12.25.156.80
Hi Lopez feeling better today

well i see the threads are still going full steam ahead today, but like i said before it is getting real deep in here. but at least people are discussing the issues with respect for each other, even if some of them i cant make heads or tails of what they are trying to say, just think all of this came from one comment that Anita Baker made on Whitneys behalf. and it really opened up alot of peoples eyes to what is going on in this world.

Marcus
Local user
(6/9/00 11:19:54 pm)
203.101.120.79
No Nerves Struck

Dear Manish,

My last post focused on Madonna, true. Why? Because you unfairly accused me of only being interested in the Madonna Vs Whitney issue, which wasn't true. I'm sure you'd rather I just sat back and let myself be unfairly accused of something than defend myself, but that's not going to happen.

Thanks for the brilliantly clever criticism of the number of posts I've made recently on the issues at hand. I notice you made no such criticism of the others who I have been enjoying the discussions with. As for your silence, you had not been an active part of the particular threads of this topic that I had been involved in, until you decided to throw in your Madonna comment. That is undeniable fact. I fully realise that this topic is far bigger than the specific issues that Rodney, Monte, luvlylady, lopez, others and I have been debating (i.e. the Image Awards in particular), but the truth is, you hadn't participated to those discussions until recently. I know you've made other posts on the topic.

You have me painted as shallow and only interested in discussing Madonna. Whatever happened to "Open Heart and Mind"?

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/10/00 4:27:16 pm)
172.163.255.90
LHorne's complex humanity:something in common w/WH

marc200: I have tried to engage you in civil discussion of differing opinions, but you have instead chosen to make a personal attack on my character w/pedantic, righteous condescension. I will address you accordingly; I do not silently back down from verbal bullies.

YOU have the audacity to accuse ME of having tangentially enlarged the discussion of your initial comments?! You, not I, have diverted this discussion through your relentless focus on LH in an apparent attempt to shift attention away from the primary issue of the role of racism in the trashing of WH. If you are so emotionally invested in LH, perhaps you ought to extol her very laudable virtues on a LH website -- or perhaps a Shirley Bassey one, where your blather is more familiar. You obviously do not care for WH, and have surfaced here just to rub her misfortune & adversity in the faces of the fans of this BB community.

Moreover, you will not dictate terms on how I ought to reply to your comments. I am under no obligation to respond w/in the narrow confine of your prescribed literal meaning, especially when you so freely digress; if you are going to patronize me, you really ought to check the hypocrisy. I comprehend moral turpitude, and, personally, I think racism is aptly categorized as moral baseness, depravity or corruption. It's my prerogative to seek my own divergent, even peripheral, meanings. Regardless, I contend that we in the US, at least, are living in more tolerant & accepting times by only superficial standards, as reactionary conservatism continues to gain momentum since the Reagan administration helped to bring bigotry & intolerance back out of the closet. You need only consider the stronghold of specious terms in our lexicon such as prolife & politically incorrect to begin to fathom the corrosive backlash on progressive liberal ideals.

Your presumptuousness is matched only by the dishonesty of your agenda. You wearily repeatedly distort my words in a feeble attempt to discredit my credibility. Nowhere have I suggested that LH & DC had a lesser commitment than did non-celebrities to fostering change in their private lives: I was, conversely, cautioning not to minimize the contribution of non-celebrities. Celebrities are not invited to speak on behalf of polemic issues because they are particularly articulate or passionate, though some of them certainly can be, but because their involvement attracts the public, helping to galvanize interest. I don't *look a gift horse in the mouth*, and I am appreciative of their support, but I simply think it is unhealthy to venerate celebrities,even those genuinely devoted to causes, more than ardent non-celebrities.

I would never question LH's record, as it were, on her involvement in the civil rights movement. Despite your pompous claim to the contrary, I am keenly cognizant of her deep involvement w/the NAACP, inspired by her suffragette activist paternal grandmother, and of her refusal to perform for segregated audiences. When I spoke of deference & toeing the line, I was clearly referring to her general public comportment. Accordingly, you have neglected to cite one significant detail especially pertinent to our discussion of honesty, bravery, image & perception as it relates to race: after having married Lennie Hayton, a white man, in 1947, the couple w/held
announcing their union for 3 years for fears of repercussions from blacks & whites alike. Furthermore, in her Kennedy Center bio, she "admitted that she married Hayton not because she loved him, but because 'he had more entree than a black man,'" though over time "she 'learned to love him because of how good he was to me & patient.'" Obviously, I know more about LH than you would have bargained. Had you been familiar w/this quote, or did you
conveniently *forget* it since it would fatally weaken your argument?

These details in no way discredit LH's commitment to civil rights or negate any of her courageous stances, BUT they DO clearly demonstrate my point that her conduct was at times informed by an understanding of the necessity for compromise &/or accommodation for survival amidst the expectations of a racist white society. I regret if it comes as a revelation that LH is a multi-faceted human being, replete & resplendent w/complexity & contradiction, and not a one-dimensional representation of all that is good & righteous, as you would, er, whitewash it, to contrast w/your perception of WH's failings.

You seemingly unwittingly reveal this dichotomy through your own schizophrenic characterizations of LH. On the one hand, you protest that she "would not bite her tongue" or "grin & bear" injustice, and even "publicly slapped a white man in the face;" yet, on the other hand, you praise her as a woman who was "consistently decorous" whose "poise & personal dignity" could inspire WH. Like your description, LH's behavior is inconsistent -- as humans are. I am especially curious how you reconcile LH's slapping a man in the face w/your idealized image, since, by my criteria, anyone who resorts to violence has lost her composure -- another very human quality. Coincidentally enough, WH was once reputedly involved in an altercation in a bar during which she punched a man in the face for having called her brother a nigger. Perhaps these 2 women have more in common than you'd like to imagine. LH has indeed affectionately referred to WH as "MY daughter."

I will risk speculating that one of the reasons for your unwillingness to forgive WH her shortcomings as you would LH is perhaps your not-quite-mature lack of objective perspective on WH. You have the luxury of distance and attendant sober discernment to review accounts of LH's travails, whereas you are living *in the (heat of the) moment* w/WH. Unlike LH, WH is living through the prime of her career in a time when the media & the government have grown increasingly brazenly intrusive & antagonistic. In LH's heyday, the studio system fiercely protected its stars from scandal -- concealing affairs, addictions & altercations w/the law -- and the media actually complied to preserve the Hollywood veneer. Where lies were once disseminated to hide the truth, they are now spread to pose as truth -- a subtle yet important distinction.

Your penchant for hyperbolic romanticism similarly undermines your apparent intended effect to add more dramatic weight to your proclamations. It is plainly preposterous to assert that "EVERY black person of that [LH's] day was committed" to the betterment of the world for future generations. This is no more true than the claim that EVERY white Southerner advocated segregation or EVERY Northerner upheld integration or EVERY woman championed feminist causes. No gender, racial, ethnic or religious group thinks and acts as a monolith. Such reductionism ignores & diminishes human variety & individuality, and dishonors those who actually sacrificed their blood, sweat & tears, their heart & soul, to various movements.

I am also well aware that people contribute to causes in their own fashion, but this recognition does not alter my point that everyone's contribution is not equal. How contributions are perceived & measured historically concerns me in the context of this argument because, again, as a culture we betray a proclivity for ridiculously aggrandizing those of entertainers well beyond their merit relative to those of non-celebrities.

Celebrity is a double-edged sword: many advantages, economic (class) & social, inaccessible to others are gained, whereas some other privileges, such as privacy, taken for granted by non-celebrities are retrenched. Furthermore, a hierarchy of treatment exists w/in the celebrity ranks as well, w/those in the upper echelon of (music industry) international fame, such as WH, Michael Jackson, Prince & Madonna, garnering more of the extremes of both sides of the blade. The world of celebrity likewise serves as a microcosm of society's social structure, wherein males & whites are accorded a disproportionate amount of power & respect. WH can be found at the crossroads of these syndromes, just as the phenomenon of her savage character assassination lies first & foremost at the intersection of racism, sexism & (reverse) classism.

Prisons clearly are disproportionately filled w/unjustly accused & convicted black men. Coincidentally enough, earlier this year an independent investigator for the FAA released a report that black women, though they comprise only a small percentage of airplane travelers leaving & entering the US, account for nearly 50% of those searched & stripped. Beyond your incredible presumption that WH was "CAUGHT w/marijuana in her luggage" when, on the contrary, there is absolutely no supporting evidence (no video, nothing to corroborate the claim that she had any pot), you have overlooked that she, too, is a BLACK WOMAN -- AND a celebrity. You are so blinded by your mission to find fault w/her that you conveniently fail to address the prejudice that likely is the reason why she may have been unjustly searched in the first place.

Wealth has NEVER insulated celebrities from the effects of racism, as you spuriously deny. The police (and security forces) have a long ignoble tradition of *making examples* of high profile minorities (Rubin "Hurricane" Carter comes quickly to mind on the heels of his biopic) in their eagerness to remind them that *the Man* (WHITE law & the government) still has the power to *put them in their place*. Minority entertainers (just about every other prominent black male rapper & hip-hopper) indeed are expressly targeted as frequently as non-celebrity minorities are subjected to *racial profiling* precisely because their success is a burning reproach to bigots. If wealth gives celebrity minorities genuine access to the means (finances & popular sentiment) to better equip themselves to fight the system, racism nonetheless has a way of being the *Great Equalizer* in the *Halls of (In)Justice*.

You truly have to work hard at your willful ignorance to aver that the OJ Simpson trial demonstrates that "wealth & celebrity are proven weapons against racism." Again, the reason the verdict polarized opinions across the racial divide and galvanized the black community is because it was so exceptional: non-whites had witnessed so many whites routinely *get away w/murder* while black men were systematically wrongly incarcerated that they were jubilant when a member of their community FINALLY won ONE -- sadly, even if he may have been guilty. (What's good for the *white goose* is good for the *black gander*…). It is mind-boggling that you can comment that "US prisons are filled w/black men who were convicted of crimes that they did not commit," yet refuse to understand how the OJ Simpson verdict might be viewed as paradigmatic retribution. Likewise, even if other black men have been convicted on charges "even more flimsy than Mike Tyson's," the point is that his riches & status still did NOT spare him from a similar fate.

I might wonder if you harbor some kind of bitter resentment at your not having achieved your desired station to the extent that it clouds your judgment against those who are *living your dream* yet failing to live up to your expectations of conduct in their roles. How do YOU like a little speculative armchair psychology, which you are so fond of applying to WH, directed YOUR way? You revel in making vague, sweeping, captious references to WH being held accountable to the "law of natural consequences" for having had "poor judgment," having done "something bad," and having engaged in "bizarre public behavior." What? Where? When? There is a profound adage: if you say a lie often enough, it becomes the *truth*. Someone who professes to understand the damaging effects of racism ought to be more careful of sophistic rumor-mongering; you ought to know that innuendo can be as harmful as or worse than direct accusation.

When did you become privy to WH's private business behind closed doors? I resent your speaking as if you have some irrefutable knowledge of her personal affairs. You seem to fancy yourself as some beacon of truth enlightening us ignorant fans. W/your determination to employ negative criticism as a weapon of (your distorted version of the) truth, you are deluding yourself if you believe that you are being *cruel to be kind* when you are merely being destructively malicious. You write w/ominous sensationalism that WH appears "bleary-eyed, incoherent or hoarse" w/the relish of a tabloid journalist -- and, hence, w/equal credibility & moral authority. Unlike you, I do not presume to know anything about her use or abuse of drugs. I do know that if she has an addiction or illness or disease, she & her loved ones will surely more easily resolve any problem w/o the obtrusive, toxic, judgmental interference of righteous pettifoggers. Humiliation & derision have never served as constructive motivational tools.

If she is as *far-gone* as you & the media purport, she is a *damn good* functional addict -- not that this would be prideworthy. I am simply noting that I do not detect any radical deterioration in her performances or public appearances. (She was brilliant at the Arista 25th Anniversary celebration). In addition, the qualities you attribute to sinister influences could just as easily be symptomatic of allergies or fatigue. Please do not insult my intelligence w/some lame rationalization that I am a loveblind, worshipful fan who cannot handle the truth. Hateful gossip, rumor & speculation gussied up w/false righteousness to masquerade as truth are still naked lies underneath the frilly dressing.

Even if any of the lurid reports on WH were exposed as factual, the disclosure would never justify gossip, which is ethically reprehensibly ugly regardless of any foundation in truth. Such a revelation would be a shame, obviously more on a personal level for her own welfare & for her child's than in regard to her career or public approval, but we fans should not fault her for failing to live up to our expectations just as we should not judge her art by our perception of her image.

Fans have an extremely difficult time separating the art from the artist. Imagine what it may have been like for fans living through the descent/*slow suicide* of icons such as Billie Holiday, Jimmy Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Jim Morrison, and Judy Garland. W/the distance of time, we are able to appreciate their legendary artistry apart from the darkness/ugliness. I am not saying that WH is on the path to destruction, but I am suggesting that we ought to learn to respect the talent distinct from the personal history (about which we are CLUELESS).

Most entertainers will invariably disappoint you if you uphold idealized expectations for them. Expecting WH to live up to your standards is YOUR problem, not HERS. If ANY singer chooses to risk ruining her voice or her career or her life by some foolish but preventable means, we fans may certainly lament the misfortune and waste and, especially, the human tragedy, but we still have no right or moral imperative to evaluate her decisions & to want anything more of her.

WH is a singer of international fame. We fans do not know her -- probably never will. How she sings and what she does in legitimate public view do not provide any great insight into her character. Whether or not WH has a drug problem, she is still & always will be the greatest singer of this generation in my heart & mind. Her voice & her music have given me immeasurable joy, and I am thankful for her having generously shared the gift of her talent
w/me. She need only live up to her own expectations and answer to her own conscience, her loved ones, and her faith. Why won't you respect that?

Monte

Manish
Administrator
(6/10/00 5:25:13 pm)
195.232.122.8
Forgiven For Being Naive

Marcus,

Quote:


My last post focused on Madonna, true. Why? Because you unfairly accused me of only being interested in the Madonna Vs Whitney issue, which wasn't true. I'm sure you'd rather I just sat back and let myself be unfairly accused of something than defend myself, but that's not going to happen.




I was actually referring to the post before that in which you asked me to list you some black British actors. I refuse to dignify that question with a list. Black talent in the UK is strong and it's on the up. It's perplexing that black actors are critized for being able to read Shakespear now!! I'm sure if asked, they could easily act 'street' - there is no pleasing some people, you're either denying your roots with a strong London accent or you're too street to be considered credible. Clearly with directors like GR around, black talent will always be held down and prevented from true success.

I'd rather you sat back and allow yourself to feel unfairly accused? Not at all. I don't sit back and accept racism, I don't expect someone who is on the other end of the spectrum and has the unique perspective of not even seeing racism at play not to speak up with his opinions.

Quote:


Thanks for the brilliantly clever criticism of the number of posts I've made recently on the issues at hand. I notice you made no such criticism of the others who I have been enjoying the discussions with. As for your silence, you had not been an active part of the particular threads of this topic that I had been involved in, until you decided to throw in your Madonna comment. That is undeniable fact. I fully realise that this topic is far bigger than the specific issues that Rodney, Monte, luvlylady, lopez, others and I have been debating (i.e. the Image Awards in particular), but the truth is, you hadn't participated to those discussions until recently. I know you've made other posts on the topic.




Yes, I did notice your involvement in the "American Black Music Awards" related thread.

Quote:


You have me painted as shallow and only interested in discussing Madonna. Whatever happened to "Open Heart and Mind"?




To be fair, Marcus, you only have to read back on the sequence of events to see that you were drawn into the discussion in order to defend comments made by GR. That said, it has been interesting to read your thoughts on the US awards and their (non) acceptance of minorities into their ranks even if your perspective is a bit...shocking? Naive?

Always OpenHeart&Mind, Always ready to *listen* without prejudice.

Manish.



MADMonte64
Global user
(6/10/00 5:27:11 pm)
152.163.206.179
To TurboPower et al: On M.Carey's racial pandering

For you (TurboPower) to claim (below) a distinction that you are not implying that Manish is a racist, but are merely suggesting that he has made a racist comment is akin to saying that you are not accusing someone of being a thief, but are merely indicating that they've stolen something! You exacerbate the situation by writing that he is ONLY ignorant, a loaded word that pejoratively connotes that someone is lacking information, awareness, knowledge or intellect. Short of imposing self-censorship, I do believe that we ought to be more considerate before making accusations & in how we phrase our comments on such a sensitive topic. Racial schisms even within the black community are becoming inreasingly polarized -- recall the fallout from the sharply divided responses to Clarence Thomas and Anita Hill during the confirmation hearings, and to Johnnie Cochran and Chris Darden at the OJ Simpson trial -- reflecting the greater general racial zeitgeist, as we have witnessed from some of the strained infighting on the BB.

On that note, I am about to court *danger*!

I concur w/Manish on the issue of Mariah Carey's racial pandering. For all intents and purposes, she has been largely perceived as white in the mainstream public's eye, and this perception has been crucial to her corporate success in a primarily white consumer world. White imagery is paramount in show business, and MC was accordingly promoted as SONY's white *answer* to WH in both print and broadcast media until MC divulged at the Soul Train Music Awards that she has a black Venezualan father, thereby conveniently establishing cultural currency w/black & Latino communities as well. It is worth noting that biographical info for radio stations & PR kits for industry insiders perfunctorily addressed her multi-racial background, but this info was NOT released to the general public -- though NOW it is readily available w/the proliferation of internet auctions & merchandising.

Although MC certainly may not have been responsible for this early misrepresentation, she should be held accountable for her failure not to have discouraged it for an entire year if indeed she considers it an integral aspect of her identity -- notwithstanding the discomfitting, condescending notion rooted in Jim Crow mentality that any directly traceable non-white lineage supersedes any other identification. Her subsequent coy dismissals of legitimate questions about her apparent fence-sitting sell-out of her heritage are disingenuous precisely because the timing of her disclosure accentuates her initial eschewal.

The music industry traditionally has provided vastly greater commercial opportunity and exposure to light-skinned artists while their darker-skinned counterparts have been predominantly pigeonholed into more narrowly marketed categories. Hence, MC, who has lately spouted off w/grandiose indignation about how she has been the target of hurtful discrimination by both whites and nonwhites owing to her mixed heritage, has invited legitimate questioning of her integrity through her own prior opportunistic waffling on the topic. I would accord her more respect if she were to admit to her compromise rather than insult our intelligence w/her insincere self-martyrizing defensiveness.

The manner in which her videos trade on her heritage as a marketing tool is, quite simply, appalling. She could not be any more blatantly condescending in her imagery: "pop versions" -- in living color (read "3-dimensional"), alternately demure & coquettish girl next door for mainstream conservative white middle Americans; r&b remixes -- black and white (read "2-dimensional"), cheesecake tease/sex object for the urban minority communities. Is THIS how she perceives different aspects of her multi-racial identity, not to mention her gender identity?! Is this what she meant in last year's Billboard Awards speech when she proclaimed she is "finally happy to be free to be herself"?! Such frightening, internalized self-hatred masquerading as liberation....

Consider MC's employment of her *alter-ego* Bianca in her HB video & in her recent (mini)concert tour. Although MC appears to be trying to rebel against what the New York Times referred to as the "mean, gloating, competitive, wicked witch of a 'white'/bland pop princess ingenue" which she would wishfully like to ascribe to Tommy Mottola's influence and which she ironically depicts as the "black-haired Hispanic vixen," that aspect of her personality actually seems more *natural* to her. She evidently is having a hard time coming to terms that she is more comfortable w/her mainstream, middle-of-the-road side (which she seems to equate w/whites) than w/the funkier, 'edgier' side (which she apparently associates w/blacks & Latinos) w/which she evidently is so desperate to identify (presumably, to facile armchair psychologists, to recover the love she was denied from the black Venezualan father who abandoned her). Put another way, as a consequence of her intensely frustrated bid for multi-cultural, hip-hop street credibility &/or acceptance by the black & Latino communities (the father issue, again), she has internalized hatred for her dominating/domineering *whiteness*.

Despite the condescending generalized stereotypes that MC (NOT I) has chosen to reflect in the dichotomy of the different versions of her videos, this claim seems to speak to an individual truth of MC's self-image filtered through public perception that I would concede could partly account for both her racial defensiveness and the polarizing schizophrenia of her 2 contrasting marketed images that pander to these respective, contrived distinctions. Part myth, part psycho-babble, part PR manipulation, part truth -- who knows for sure? I think it's fair to speculate that MC is uncertain herself.

Max UK 
Global user
(6/10/00 7:58:07 pm)
195.92.67.39
Mariah and mixed race identity

When Mariah first came out, did she flat out deny that she was mixed race? You mentioned that a reference to it was included in her press pack. Was she then required to go out and mention her racial heritage at every available opportunity? Maybe she chose to steer clear of it because of the obvious big issues this would have caused. (Judging from this current discussion she was quite right to!)

Alternatively, she was only 20 or so then so maybe it was something she was working through in her own mind. Many mixed race people, because of society’s unfortunate divisions, have to work through their identity, this is not something you sit down and work out one day when you are sixteen. I know from my own experience and that of other mixed-race friends and family that this process of coming to terms with one’s identity can be a long process. We do not know what was going through Mariah’s head at the time.

Mariah’s ‘racial pandering’. I believe has more to do with the continuing racial division in the US music industry and society in general. The respective videos she makes for Pop and R&B singles show different images of Mariah because those are the images that appeal and sell to each individual market. If Mariah kissed a black man in her pop videos, that would upset middle America. If she kissed a white man in her R&B videos, she would be accused of ‘selling out’. This is more to do with black/white society’s PERCEPTION of Mariah than Mariah herself. Of note that the issue of interracial relationships depicted in videos is peculiar to the US, in the UK it is acceptable and even fashionable to depict a mixed-race relationship in a pop video. When UK artists attempt to ‘break’ America, they find that they have to shoot new videos for fear of upsetting blacks, whites, or both.

Your psychological assessment of Mariah is in VERY dangerous territory indeed. Your use of the words ‘dichotomy’ and ‘schizophrenia’ could be perceived (though I am sure you are not like that ) as indicating that mixed race people are somehow confused and should choose a single identity and stick to it – the stereotype ‘tragic mulatto’ of old. I could write an essay on this subject, however as I mentioned in my post below (under my old alter ego, marcu5) mixed race identity is complex and dynamic and dependent on several complicated factors (such as which 'race' you resemble most closely, the racial mix of the community you grew up in, etc etc). Mixed race people are free to explore all sides of their identities, and that includes Mariah with her videos. Unfortunately society is very quick to judge, to try and pigeonhole us into whatever category is convenient. If we act outside of the stereotype of whatever category we have been positioned into, we are criticised. I personally in the past have have been accused of being too black by white people and too white by black people. It would seem that sometimes we cannot win!

As I said previously, US society in particular seems to be having problems accepting the notion of the growing numbers of mixed race people. (it is not much of a big deal in the UK anymore, with 50% of black people marrying white). All I can say is: Y'all better get used to it!!!




Max UK - the artist formerly known as marcu5

Marcus
Local user
(6/10/00 9:06:50 pm)
203.101.120.89
Open Your Heart...

...I'll make you love me! ;-)

Sorry! You *know* what I'm like, though!!! :-) Just call me "predictable"!! :-)

lopez
Administrator
(6/10/00 10:23:40 pm)
205.188.198.26
Re: Whew! Whoop There it Is!
MADMonte64
Global user
(6/11/00 12:42:35 am)
152.163.206.186
Max, you have completely misread my post! >8[]

Nowhere in my text have I claimed to address all multi-racial people; nowhere in my text have I implied that multi-racial people are confused. I am clearly writing specifically about MC's individual issues; my use of the words "dichotomy" & "schizophrenia" is clearly a reference to the sharp contrast in MC's SELF-representation in the videos SHE has created for different markets.

A multi-racial person is not the only one free to explore all aspects of her identity: each of us has freedom of choice; each of us has to work through our respective identities in our own minds. Identity is complex & dynamic for everbody; identity is neither fixed nor necessarily dependent upon appearance or ethnic, racial or religious background.

Unfortunately, the uninformed, ignorant &/or intolerant often DO rely on their perception of exterior characteristics to define others. Anyone who conforms to expectations by pandering to stereotypes thus does herself & others a great disservice. Your contention that MC is merely giving the market what it wants accordingly only supports my reason for disappointment. If she truly wanted to demonstrate that identity is flexible & mutable, she would subvert conventions. MC has every means at her disposal to control the content of her videos, and she instead chooses to portray images that feed into standardized noxious racist & sexist notions that different racial groups think & act as monoliths. That is a heartbreaker indeed.

It is unfathomable how/why MC would have stood by in idle silence when she was depicted as the white counterpart to WH if she had had any modicum of pride in her mixed heritage. I would have been more willing to accept & to sympathize that she may have harbored insecurities about her mixed heritage at the onset of her career had she not seemed so much MORE UNSURE about her identity SINCE her break from Tommy Mottola & her attendant professed newfound comfort w/herself. It is the image presented in the videos for her last 2 studio albums that reflects someone whose racial sensitivity & understanding of race relations is woefully naive or thoughtlessly misguided.

BTW, my line about courting danger was a facetious reference to my expectation of a heated response from the defensive MC stalkers of this BB. I never fear the expression of ideas. Communication is healthy.

Health & peace.

whitneyhlover 
Global user
(6/11/00 6:29:47 am)
205.188.200.29
Re: I AGREE WITH MANISH!

Mariah Carey is black when it suits her. Think about the systematic way she releases her music. She even used ebonics in the remix the TGIFY. She would never do that on a regualr song, and I happen to not approve of it either way. It just bothers me to see so many sides of her. She was not always so vocal about being multi-racial either. In fact, when it just became a big topic, I remember her saying something to the effect of only indentifying with the white because she was closer to her mother and her mother's family. When it made sense, all of the sudden she was working with black artists to produce hip hop remixes, but they would never appear in the first video or on the album. She takes a very systematic approach to race.

whitneyhlover 
Global user
(6/11/00 9:04:03 am)
152.163.201.208
Re: Baker, Houston, Racism, Streisand & Ritchie

No. Streisand has not retired from live performance. It is just that when she does them they cost outrageous prices, and now they are rare. Baker used Streisand to make a point. The public went crazy over Streisand, I am told. I think it is harder for the younger generation to understand now. We were not there for all of it, and by saying that the older people knew what she meant. Streisand to me is sickening, though. She is extremely haughty and wants her butt kissed on both sides in broad daylight.

Max UK 
Global user
(6/11/00 9:27:08 am)
195.92.67.45
Whitney's racial pandering?

Isn't Whitney guilty of a little racial pandering herself? Her first two videos seemed aimed squarely at the R&B market, then HWIK was her attempt to break the mainstream. I remember Clive once said that he was surprised that YGGL and SAMLFY crossed over as they did, HWIK was supposed to be her first 'crossover hit'. In HWIK Whitney is presented as a pop princess, prancing with mostly white dancers. However in the bridge section where she is opening the doors ('If he loves me....) her ideal man is black, again so as not to upset white and black America.

All through the 80s the representation of Whitney as a pop princess continued, yet when it was felt that she was losing her R&B fanbase, IYBT took a pop/R&B hybrid direction. Whilst guaranteed pop hits IYBT and ATMTIN were given full release, We Didn't Know with Stevie Wonder was released to R&B markets only, as if to say, 'hey, Whitney has got soul you know!' - but it was withheld from the pop market.

This is all to do with perception, middle America saw Whitney as a coffee-coloured, mainstream, acceptable shade of black. Arista did little to upset this, and why not after her album sales? A case in point is that despite the romantic theme of most of her songs, after she ‘crossed over’ I can only think of WDBHG where Whitney is seen romantically linked with a black man, and then you hardly see his face. This continued right up to the WTE period.

Similarly Mariah wouldn’t want to upset her own applecart, so if as you say, she appears with white men in her pop videos this is because she she is perceived as white. No amount of TV interviews about her racial heritage will change this perception. I can understand that by portraying one image she would be in a no-win situation, either perceived as a sell out by black people or, by white people too ‘urban’ (the current euphenism for ‘black’).

My point is, Mariah and Whitney are both mainstream artists, they and their respective record companies have played the race card, because that is what is necessary in the US' divided music market for ‘crossover’ appeal. Why should they risk their careers for want of challenging these boundaries? For the same reason you won’t find George or Elton with a man in their videos. However much joy these artists may give to people, for record companies, it’s not about breaking down barriers, all about the dollars and cents.

Apologies if I misunderstood some of your post, I knew you weren't speaking ill of mixed race (or as they say in the US, multi-racial) people.

(Eek…’Showboat’ with Ava Gardner in a ‘tragic mulatto’ role has just come on the TV…..I’m off for a giggle)

Max UK – the artist formerly known as marcu5!

marc200
Global user
(6/11/00 11:10:48 am)
209.179.216.184
"complex humanity", indeed !!!

I have read your post in its entirety. Your post is so circuitous, and redundant of your earlier posts, that there is no logical starting point to address any of the "issues" you are ranting about. That you now accuse me of having pushed the boundaries of civility is ridiculous but not really surprising. As well, the totality of your comments throughout this thread are so completely contradictory of one another it is laughable.

But it bears noting that there is not a single statement in any of my previous posts that could reasonably be called a personal attack on you or your character. My "condescension" is yet another product of your wild imagination

You opened this thread with a politically charged comment that Anita Baker made in a magazine. I (incorrectly?) assumed that you wanted to spark an honest discourse on the issue. I ventured my opinion that Whitney's trouble with the media was not entirely attributable to racism. I offered that Whitney's "dam of silence" as well as her recent inability (or refusal) to eschew public behavior supportive of the rumors -- i.e. cancelled appearances, the Academy awards debacle, marijuana possession, etc. -- contributed to her current predicament. I introduced Lena Horne into the conversation because of Whitney's reference to her in OUT magazine. I am aware of the mutual admiration between LH and WH, and I know WH holds LH in very high esteem. Therefore, I implied that WH would be well served by following the example set by LH more closely.

You countered with this crap about a "generational context" and "reverse classism" and "measured quiet dignity"; and I thought you really wanted to talk about those things. As such, I commenced a dialogue with you wherein I sought to clarify my point of view and better understand yours. All of my opinions were expressed in an honest and straightforward manner. There has been no "agenda", no "hypocrisy", and certainly no "personal attacks". Until now, I had presumed nothing about you, your motivations or your character, I merely responded to the content of your posts.

You, on the other hand, have aimed below the belt throughout this "discussion". You have been very presumptuous (and way off the mark) regarding my motives, my political ideology, my affinities and, of course, my "attitude". You have branded my opinions with pejorative terms like "ignorant", "na´ve" and "odious".

As well, you have been entirely too liberal in exercising your prerogative to "seek you own divergent, even peripheral, meanings" in MY words. You have ascribed ideas, opinions and words to me that don't accurately reflect the content of my posts, the plain meaning of my words or my beliefs. For example, saying that wealth and celebrity are proven weapons against racism (MY words) is NOT the same as saying that wealth insulates celebrities from racism (YOUR words). Your posts are rife with these kinds of distortions. Meanwhile, I have attempted to respond to what I honestly believed was your point of view. Perhaps there would be less room for genuine misunderstanding if YOU were inclined to express your opinions in plain English (hyperbolic "romanticism" ??? -- this is nonsense!).

Your accusation that I am trying to "discredit (your) credibility" is preposterous. I don’t even understand how the notion of "credibility" has any application to a series of posts on an internet discussion board dedicated to an entertainer. What degree of "credibility" is required to express an opinion on the public actions of a public figure? Whitney Houston is a celebrity. She has a public persona and an image that she projects to her public. We have been discussing the actual and/or symbolic significance of her outward image, nothing more. I believe everyone -- and that includes you -- is credible to offer an opinion on this subject. So you can rest assured that your "credibility" is immaterial as far as I am concerned.

Furthermore, there is nothing inherent in the term "fan" that would preclude one from questioning the prudence of their idol's words, actions or inaction. I am a fan of Whitney Houston. I believe it is our individual prerogative to have certain expectations of those that we admire. If a celebrity that you admire were to make a public racial slur, would you still insist that she need only "answer to her own conscience, her loved ones, and her faith"? I think that a fan reserves the right to be disappointed by that action. Why can't YOU respect THAT ????

Ironically, your admiration of Whitney Houston does not appear to be the motivation for this thread. I would never regard you as a fan blinded by adoration. As I see it, the only real impediment you have to receiving anyone else's point of view is your own ego. For you this thread was nothing more than an opportunity to plunder your thesaurus for words like "meretricious" and "perspicuity". You are intent on winning a DISCUSSION -- which someone with your impressive vocabulary must know is impossible, grammatically and otherwise.

I fully expect that posters who visit this board will have different opinions. Many of these opinions are well stated, thought provoking and persuasive -- THAT is why I enjoy coming here. You, and certain other members of your self-appointed "fanclub", have made it a personal crusade to hurl insults at any poster who does not agree with your viewpoint. This has become a very tiresome routine. Even so, I am confident that my comments will appear significantly less like "blather" to anyone with the inclination -- and fortitude -- to review this thread with objectivity.




P.S.

LENA HORNE
As for your claim that I have been "schizophrenic" in my description of Lena Horne. I will once again refer you to my initial comments on her:

"And while (Lena and Diahann) had all sorts of hell breaking loose in their PERSONAL lives, they earned stellar PROFESSIONAL reputations for being consistently decorous and always at the top of their game."

I trust you can now see how LH could slap a white man in a restaurant one day (PERSONAL), and still be decorous and at the top of her game when she performed on TV the next day (PROFESSIONAL). As such, there is nothing for me to reconcile. YOU started all this stuff about Lena "seething bitterly in quiet desperation" and "toeing the line" and "turning the other cheek". And worse, you said these things as if you really knew something about her. I merely pointed out that these statements were false and not supported by any aspect of her known personal or professional history. Now that you have done a little research you feel compelled to clean up your misstatements -- and rightfully so.

Ultimately, Lena Horne's reputation stands on its own, and neither of us can alter what is already incontrovertible. So I would encourage anyone who has been confused by your duplicitous assessment of Lena Horne to check out one of the three published biographies that accurately chronicle her life and career.

PondsGB
Global user
(6/11/00 11:27:17 pm)
209.156.196.3
Re: survival.

I think Anita is right on with her comments in support of Whitney. I hope others in the industry take a stance on what is total crap journalism.

Author Subject
Turbo Power
Global user
(6/11/00 11:29:28 pm)
149.159.13.57
I don't care what Mariah is.

I don't think this is supposed to be about Mariah, nor do I wish to discuss her here. There is a Mariah board that I frequent where I can do plenty of that.

The fact that people here were making some racial comments does not make them a racist, just ignorant. I know the negative connotations of the word, but it wasn't meant to be received that way. (I seem to recall some little thing about assumptions.....) That was not a true comparison about the thief and stealing..... It would be more like a child that takes something from a store without paying for it. The child doesn't know any better when he/she steals. It doesn't make him/her a thief. There's a difference. If that child has been taught not to take things without paying and does it anyway, then he/she is a thief. My meaning of ignorant (seeing as how I have to spell it out) is uninformed. Where I come from, there is nothing wrong with being uninformed, so please don't try to make a mountain out of a mole with what I said.

Def B Fly
Global user
(6/12/00 12:55:35 am)
172.160.115.64
MARIAH SAID SHE WAS BLACK FROM THE START

There is no way to deny it or get past it! Go to the Mariah Carey Archives and read articles from 1990 and on and you will see Mariah talk about her black/venezuelan father. Only nobody cared until Mariah started making "black" music! When in actuality I thought "Vision Of Love", "Emotions", "The Wind", "Anytime You Need A Friend" etc. were "black" songs. But Mariah has always talked about mixes race, only now the media and the record company has brought it to the forefront. But go read articles and you will see, I even have a CD imported from the UK where Mariah is being interviewed and she talks about her mixed race and that was just prior to her first ever appearance on the David Letterman show to sing her debut single "Vision Of Love"! Being mixed is not something that you can easily indentify, and the most obvious way to identify it, is to act or present yourself in the way that society as deemed presentable. Forgive Mariah, and forgive me for being mixed raced and living in a society that CLEARLY tells us when we are acting black and when we are acting white! Hey forgive Whitney as well!!! Forgive Clive Davis and forgive Tommy Motalla!

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/12/00 2:09:16 am)
152.163.206.176
Exhaling Step by Step

One at a time:

M2:"I have read your post in its entirety."

That usually helps.

M2:"Your post is so circuitous, and redundant of your earlier posts."

Both of us have repeated ourselves in trying to clarify our respective points.

M2:"There is no logical starting point to address any of the 'issues' you are ranting about."

Perhaps you cannot find a logical starting point because logic has so far eluded you.

M2:"That you now accuse me of having pushed the boundaries of civility is ridiculous but not really surprising."

Since this thread represents the first time that we have engaged an an exchange, what is your basis for finding anything about me unsurprising?

M2:"The totality of your comments throughout this thread are so completely contradictory of one another it is laughable."

LOL! I have been a model of consistency, perhaps to your chagrin. You have a really bad habit of making broad generalizations w/o supporting evidence.

M2:"There is not a single statement in any of my previous posts that could reasonably be called a personal attack on you or your character. My 'condescension' is yet another product of your wild imagination."

I see it differently (naturally). For brevity, I'll cite 3 individual examples that contributed to my overall impression.

M2:"You obviously know nothing about Lena Horne."

Claiming (w/snide righteousness, I thought/think) that I don't have your authoritative knowledge is insulting.

M2:"There is no 'slippery slope' here, counsel."

The "counsel" reference is condescending.

M2:"I did not say, or imply, that we are living in an age of greater "racial" tolerance. I don't believe that is true, and it could not have been reasonably inferred from that statement."

I took/take it personally that you call my reason into question.

I have strong opinions, though, contrary to your viewpoint, I think that they remain fair. I make my disagreement & displeasure clear, however. I do not indulge in the baiting game of hiding behind ambiguity, then feigning innocence to plead victimization, a tactic which you have worn too well.

M2:"Perhaps there would be less room for genuine misunderstanding if YOU were inclined to express your opinions in plain English (hyperbolic "romanticism" ??? -- this is nonsense!)."

What part of hyperbolic romanticisn don't you understand? You romanticize LH w/hyperbole. Clear enough?

M2:"All of my opinions were expressed in an honest and straightforward manner. You have been entirely too liberal in exercising your prerogative to 'seek you own divergent, even peripheral, meanings' in MY words. For example, saying that wealth and celebrity are proven weapons against racism (MY words) is NOT the same as saying that wealth insulates celebrities from racism (YOUR words). Your posts are rife with these kinds of distortions."

Your mincing of words is beneath someone of your intellect. If you parse every word, you can deny the meaning of anything to suit your agenda: weak try to obscure your lack of ANY proof. Wealth & celebrity are NEITHER proven weapons against racism NOR do they insulate celebrities from racism. Satisfied?

M2:"YOU started all this stuff about Lena 'seething bitterly in quiet desperation' and 'toeing the line' and 'turning the other cheek'. And worse, you said these things as if you really knew something about her. I merely pointed out that these statements were false and not supported by any aspect of her known personal or professional history."

And you were wrong, as LH's own words clearly support my contention.

M2:"Now that you have done a little research you feel compelled to clean up your misstatements -- and rightfully so."

I have no misstatements whatsoever to clean up. I didn't have to do any research; I DID seek out a known reference source to make sure that I quoted LH's own words accurately. Again, her admission that she married a white man whom she did not love because "he had more entree than a black man" unequivocally bolsters my argument that she may have felt compelled to make concessions informed by expectations to conform to ideals of a racist white society in order to survive in that era. If you cannot acknowledge even this obvious point, then we shall never meet on any common ground since you are too deeply in denial.

M2:"Ultimately, Lena Horne's reputation stands on its own, and neither of us can alter what is already incontrovertible. So I would encourage anyone who has been confused by your duplicitous assessment of Lena Horne to check out one of the three published biographies that accurately chronicle her life and career."

I welcome the notion that posters would read up on LH because, contrary to your assertion, accounts of her life will corroborate that she indeed was a dynamic, multi-faceted woman -- very human -- and NOT the one-dimensional, symbol of defiance you apparently would like her to be. She had moments of rebellion AND moments of acquiescence. Ignoring her complexity & contradictions to falsely idealize her actually serves to dehumanize her. I accept & respect her humanity w/its virtues & foibles. You wrote that you are younger than WH: perhaps as you age, you will gain more perspective to appreciate the folly of idolatry, idealization & presumptuous judgment.

M2:"Whitney Houston has made some bad choices and, arguably, she is suffering the consequences of those choices. I also resent the suggestion that this attack on Whitney is substantially attributable to racism. That is simply not true, and it undermines the reality of those of us who are truly victimized by racism; rather than by some questionable combination of indifference, poor judgment AND racism."

YOU resent the suggestion that this attack on WHITNEY is substantially attributable to racism? That's a mighty galling statement especially since you STILL have not profferred ONE IOTA of OBJECTIVELY SUBSTANTIVE evidence to support any of your speculation. Moreover, even if it turns out that she has a drug problem, I uphold that the savaging of her character is ENTIRELY attributable to a combination of racism & sexism & (reverse) classism.

WH's experience UNDERSCORES the pervasiveness of racism in all sectors of life. White entertainers (Charlie Sheen, Robert Downey, Jr., Courtenay Love), non-white males (Sean Puffy Combs, Snoop Doggy Dog, Old Dirty Bastard), and even other non-white women (Lil' Kim, Lisa Lopez, Diana Ross) are not attacked this fiercely despite much more flamboyant behavior & run-ins w/the law. If by indifference you are referring to her "dam of silence," I view it as rebellious pride. What "poor judgment" could possibly merit such a relentless, fervent assault?

M2:"I believe it is our individual prerogative to have certain expectations of those that we admire. If a celebrity that you admire were to make a public racial slur, would you still insist that she need only "answer to her own conscience, her loved ones, and her faith"? I think that a fan reserves the right to be disappointed by that action. Why can't YOU respect THAT ????"

Certainly it's your prerogative, but it's a free choice (I wouldn't elevate it to the lawful entitlement of a right) that I do NOT respect because I believe that disappointment is reserved for an individual's sense of herself. Disappointment FOR someone is an expression of sympathy; disappointment by/in someone is JUDGMENTAL, and, therefore, NOT CONSTRUCTIVE, and UGLY. Who are you or any of us to have expectations of somebody else, no less someone we don't even know personally?

Though your example of a celebrity making a public racial slur is, well, specious (I won't apologize if you don't like my vocabulary) since WH's alleged transgressions would not hurt or harm anybody else (and PLEASE do not feed me any additional speculation on the possible effects of this alleged behavior on her capacity as a mother) other than herself, I WOULD indeed STILL insist that she need only answer to her own conscience, her loved ones, and her faith. I may admire, praise or commend CONDUCT &/or STATEMENT just as I may denounce, decry or disparage them, but I am cautious about expressing approval or condemantion of the PERSON based merely upon publicly viewed or reported image.

Celebrity worship makes me very uncomfortable: I think it's unhealthy. We don't know them; we know OF them -- a HUGE distinction. Correspondingly, my role models are limited to those w/whom I personally interact.

You evidently imagine yourself as some practitioner of "tough love" when you are just plain cruel. If someone in your neighborhood were suspected of having a drug problem, do you sincerely believe that shooting your mouth off & making her the talk of the town would be beneficial? How does humiliating someone encourage her to seek help? If you want to advocate an intervention, surely there are more decent, private ways to appeal to her close loved ones.

We have different life philosophies, apparently.

M2:"You, and certain other members of your self-appointed 'fanclub', have made it a personal crusade to hurl insults at any poster who does not agree with your viewpoint. This has become a very tiresome routine."

My self-appointed fanclub?! Our personal crusade?! Beware attempts at conversion! ROTFLOL! Now you are really stretching the boundaries of lame, juvenile paranoid conspiracy. You would have made a fine investigator for HUAC. It's a neat trick to be envious of something that exists only in your imagination. This debate has been between you & me: I certainly haven't & wouldn't enlist anyone to defend me. If others don't care for your opinions, they have needed no encouragement or coercion. Your suggestion otherwise insults the autonomy of each poster of this BB community.

M2:"Even so, I am confident that my comments will appear significantly less like 'blather' to anyone with the inclination -- and fortitude -- to review this thread with objectivity."

It takes some mighty hefty intestinal fortitude to wade through your categorically unsubstantiated claims, obfuscations, vagaries & vagueness.

M2:"I don’t even understand how the notion of 'credibility' has any application to a series of posts on an internet discussion board dedicated to an entertainer."

Credibility derives from supporting your argument w/solid examples & consistency. So far you have demonstrated the capacity for neither. Why would this or any forum preclude their application?

"For you this thread was nothing more than an opportunity to plunder your thesaurus for words like 'meretricious' and 'perspicuity'.

Oh, please! LOL! Anti-intellectual criticism only bespeaks insecurity. My vocabulary is a function of being a voracious reader & a prolific writer. I haven't needed a thesaurus for this discussion, though I surely wouldn't demean someone's use of one to enhance his language or meaning. Why you would feel compelled to do so escapes me since your facility w/language is comparable to mine.

"You are intent on winning a DISCUSSION -- which someone with your impressive vocabulary must know is impossible, grammatically and otherwise."

It's not about winning, it's about making yourself understood & providing clarity: presenting ALL sides of an issue, not just half a story to distort meaning; providing evidence to support accusation. I have no use for half-truths, rumor & innuendo, and remain bewildered why someone of your obvious academic intellect would so readily embrace them.

"You opened this thread with a politically charged comment that Anita Baker made in a magazine. I (incorrectly?) assumed that you wanted to spark an honest discourse on the issue."

You assumed correctly -- but I haven't perceived YOUR comments or motives as completely honest since you seem to have surfaced chiefly to disparage WH, and you've written little to alter my opinion.

"I ventured my opinion that Whitney's trouble with the media was not entirely attributable to racism. I offered that Whitney's "dam of silence" as well as her recent inability (or refusal) to eschew public behavior supportive of the rumors -- i.e. cancelled appearances, the Academy awards debacle, marijuana possession, etc. -- contributed to her current predicament."

Her cancelled appearances, including dropping out of or being dropped from the Oscar telecast (there are wildly conflicting reports & explanations) and her ALLEGED marijuana possession (again, NO evidence) in no way, shape or form account for the grossly disproportionate trashing of her character. Numerous high-profile entertainers w/similar touring schedules who cancelled more engagements went/go uncriticized in the media. When Paul MacCartney was detained at an airport for marijuana possession years ago, the outcry did not reach the same fever pitch as the vicious zealousness directed at WH. When he & many others have seemed desultory in performance or during interviews, the media rarely have jumped to the conclusion that they suffer from a serious drug problem.

"You countered with this crap about a 'generational context' and 'reverse classism' and 'measured quiet dignity'; and I thought you really wanted to talk about those things.

If it's all "crap," why would you want to talk about it? If you're going to call it "crap," you ought to be prepared to offer some constructive evidence. Through 2 replies, you have not.

I am not sure why you have taken it so personally that I have disagreed w/what I perceive as your one-dimensional assessment of LH. Ironically, I suspect that we both respect her -- only I am making a distinction that I respect her in spite of or even owing to her *flaws*, whereas you seem to want to uphold an image of flawlessness. That's how I read your retorts.

Of course, I could be mistaken. It is the inherent nature of a BB that people tend to talk AT each other rather than speak WITH each other, which may lead to defensiveness that obscures intended meaning. Most of us do not know each other, and despite emoticons & other symbols designed to key us in on tone, individual interpretation is inherently subjective, so it is easy to misconstrue tone & meaning. Writing personas often contrast w/our temperament in person. Writing at times can obscure uncertainty, insecurity & humor -- which I try to remind myself. I am no more above reproach than anyone else; I give as good as I get. I can get easily bent out of shape when I feel *attacked*. Whether my impression is right or wrong is open to interpretation.

OTOH, posts reviewed collectively over time can reveal an accurate general sense of a person's fairness and ideals, barring exceptions such as those who post under more than one alias -- a habit which betrays a different *shortcoming* of character altogether. On this count, my *reputation*, as it were, is nothing as you have mischaracterized it. I do not participate on this BB to validate my ego. (Perhaps you do, so it's difficult for you to imagine otherwise?) I genuinely enjoy the sharing of ideas. While I certainly have had my share of run-ins, my harmonious, respectful exchanges far outweigh my squabbles. Notably, I have parried w/several other posters in this thread, but none of the other discussions have degenerated into heated personal attacks. In the 2-1/2 years that I have consistently contributed to this BB (in its past & current incarnation), I have even forged several genuine friendships, having sought out & met a few people in person. Sorry to, er, disappoint you that I'm not universally perceived as an ogre.

"WH would be well served by following the example set by LH more closely."

Perhaps YOU ought to follow LH's example of admitting to her imperfections: I respect her honesty.

If you would like to respond & to get in the last word on the BB, that's your prerogative, but I am through w/this public conflict & am letting you know that I will reply only in private email from this point on in order to spare the other posters.

Rodney1
Global user
(6/12/00 5:45:37 pm)
63.71.228.4
I'm Late Reading This Post But Monte You're Told

the truth about so many thing s about Ms. Carey. I had decided to stay away from this thread but this thing is growing like a fungus and I've been so tempted to read the new additions to the thread, that I finally gave in. These are the exact things (of course I couldn't have said it as well as you did and been as sensitive to the other posters) that I was armed with if and when I was going to discuss my distaste for Ms. Carey. There's more that i could add to this but You've done an exceptional job at driving home the point, despite the fact that some of those who are reading it are failing to take it in, as evident from their responses. Keep it coming Monte.

Rodney

Rodney1
Global user
(6/12/00 5:51:56 pm)
63.71.228.4
You've Done it Once Again, Monte. I'm Your

cheering squad today.

Rodney

luvlyldy
Local user
(6/12/00 6:48:29 pm)
205.188.196.49
Re: You've Done it Once Again, Monte. I'm Your

Monte, Monte he's our man......

Make that two for the cheering squad!!

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/12/00 9:00:30 pm)
152.163.206.206
Loves me, Loves me not...

Wake me, I'm shaking...!

MUK:"Isn't Whitney guilty of a little racial pandering herself?"

To pander is to reassure expectations by catering to stereotypes. Acceptance of a black woman who sang power ballads *straight* w/the melody was unheard of when WH debuted. Contemporary white women such as Teena Marie, Alison Moyet & Madonna had made successful forays into R&B & dance, but WH broke down one of the last remaining musical barriers. She broke new ground not only by competing in a market previously reserved for white women, but by soundly trouncing the competition.

WH's breaking through the great white wall of pop radio on turf previously exclusive to white women such as Barbra Streisand changed the landscape of top 40 forever.

MUK:"In HWIK Whitney is presented as a pop princess, prancing with mostly white dancers."

FTR: 2 black men, 3 white men, 4 white women, 1 black woman.

MUK:"in the bridge section where she is opening the doors ('If he loves me....)"

This has little bearing on the discussion, but I always chuckle during the bridge when she says "Loves me not" and the guy mimes "NOT!" as they crack up before the camera cuts to the next shot. (Please let's not over-analyze this & claim that she's being rejected by the black community! LOL!)

"her ideal man is black, again so as not to upset white and black America."

Ideal? Just a prospect is more like it. At the video's conclusion she still doesn't *know*, and struts off alone. O


"Whilst guaranteed pop hits IYBT and ATMTIN were given full release, We Didn't Know with Stevie Wonder was released to R&B markets only, as if to say, 'hey, Whitney has got soul you know!' - but it was withheld from the pop market."

IYBT & ATMTIN & Miracle demonstrated ample soul, even if they didn't fit neatly into the R&B niche.

MUK:"This is all to do with perception, middle America saw Whitney as a coffee-coloured, mainstream, acceptable shade of black. Arista did little to upset this."

Uh...they couldn't change her *coffee color*! While I understand that WH's creamy, relatively light complexion is more palatable to mainstream Americans than are darker tones, mainstream America's embrace of a woman of ANY brown shade as its PREMIER songstress was a miracle!

MUK:"despite the romantic theme of most of her songs, after she ‘crossed over’ I can only think of WDBHG where Whitney is seen romantically linked with a black man, and then you hardly see his face. This continued right up to the WTE period."

WH's videos have few plots; the focus is usually squarely on WH w/minimal storyline distraction.

MUK:"if as you say, she appears with white men in her pop videos this is because she is perceived as white."

Er...I never said that! I was disturbed by the way MC changed her OWN image in the different versions of her videos to fit respective stereotypes designed to appeal to mainstream & urban perceptions.

MUK:"My point is, Mariah and Whitney are both mainstream artists, they and their respective record companies have played the race card, because that is what is necessary in the US' divided music market for ‘crossover’ appeal."

What race card has WH played? She is inescapably a black
woman in all representations of her image.

MC is undeniably white complected though she has a multi-racial background. If she proudly embraces all aspects of her heritage, why does she compartmentalize her image in such a distressing schism? Her videos marketed to mainstream audiences present her as a coy, sweet, wholesome, *virgin*; her videos aimed at the urban market reflect a more provocatively dressed, sexually assertive *tease*. Don't urban women have wholesome sides? Don't mainstream women have assertive sides? Why isn't there ever any variation or deviation in these roles? Aren't all women multi-dimensional?

MUK:"However much joy these artists may give to people, for record companies, it’s not about breaking down barriers, all about the dollars and cents."

It's a business, for sure, but although some artists may not have set out to break down barriers, they do so by example. WH fits into that category.

MUK:"Eek…’Showboat’ with Ava Gardner in a ‘tragic mulatto’ role has just come on the TV…..I’m off for a giggle."

Well, ummm...at least Ava Gardner is easy on the eyes -- drop-dead strikingly beautiful.

Health & peace.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/12/00 9:20:39 pm)
152.163.207.183
Thnx, Rodney & luvlylady.

Are you sure you want to *risk* the wrath of those who will belittle you for your agreement w/a (very human) MADman who occasionally *takes off the gloves* & fails in the sensitivity department? >:O

Mysty
Local user
(6/12/00 10:07:11 pm)
209.240.200.139
Profound, enlightening, and educational all...

in one fell swoop! Brilliantly and beautifully written Monte. I think we could all learn a thing of two from you. You are so well informed and your posts beam with knowledge and truth. You are also so well focused and observant about history, current events, and music among many things. Reading your posts is like learning something new all the time and your reasoning truly makes one stop a think about a lot of things. Wonderful post. Keep them coming!

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/13/00 7:47:43 am)
204.168.51.148
Thnx! I try to be as reasonable as a MADman can.:)

The positive response is reassuring.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/13/00 7:53:55 am)
204.168.51.148
The discomfort some feel re:issues in this thread

...is precisely the reason why they need to be addressed & discussed.

Franz
Global user
(6/15/00 12:45:39 am)
209.240.200.173
Re: Loves me, Loves me not...

LOL! Man, you guys went too deep when interpreting W's HWIK video lol

All I have to add to this discussion is that I can understand why Mariah has pandered as much as she did. The music industry spends a lot of time creating images and figuring out what market their "product" has the best chance to succeed in.

Just LOOK at Mariah! Of course she'd be geared to white America at the beginning. I'm of mixed heritage myself, and I'm always perceived as hispanic or white when interacting with people who are still not used to seeing "people like me" around. She would risk ridicule if she targeted the black audience from the start.

What HAS disappointed me, is that Mariah is now a global megastar, and with her last 2 albums, she has clearly drawn lines in the sand as to what she thinks is black and white. It's appaling. Remixes of songs geared toward different radio stations are fine, but her video images are disappointing.

I remember in the 80's when "people" used to say that WH sings "white". Not sure exactly what that means, but as Monte said, there is no denying that WH is a black woman. And her rise to global superstardom is impressive. I don't quite think she thread new ground, but I think she certainly joined the ranks of singers like Diana Ross, Tina Turner, Aretha Franklin, Michael Jackson, the Jackson 5, (just to name a few) as undeniable black singers who achieved mainstream success.

That's all folks!





Waterfall2000
Global user
(6/26/00 8:48:43 pm)
4.48.35.151
You've said ALOT of racist statements

I read most of your posts MADMonte64 on this thread and you've said alot of racist statements mainly about Mariah Carey, it makes me...so angry about what you said, I WOULD stop it, it hurts people.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/27/00 5:29:19 pm)
204.168.51.148
I doubt that U even know what racism is.

Racism is a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits & capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority or inferiority of another race; this belief is utilized to justify & to impose discrimination. NOTHING in my posts is remotely informed by such a philosophy. You wouldn't know a racist if one stared back in the mirror.

You are nothing but another juvenile, overprotective MC fan here on a mission to try to stir up trouble w/ignorant accusations. The link to your username indicates that you've just opened up an account today -- and 3 of your 7 posts so far directly link back to the Friends of Mariah Carey site, which, unlike this site, does not permit dissenting opinion. Perhaps you ought to go clean *your own home* before you dirty ours anymore w/your irrational presence.

MADMonte64
Global user
(6/28/00 2:14:24 am)
152.163.206.196
Don't go chasing waterfalls

I have no compunction about expressing my dislike for MC in face-to-face conversation w/her fans, though it occurs rarely since I don't waste that much energy on someone who fails to engage my interest on any profound level, emotional or intellectual. Why would I visit the website of an entertainer whose singing bores me & whose image dismays me? I posted on her racial pandering only in response to ignorant comments attacking the character of CW webmaster Manish.

It's regrettable that you obviously have such an inferiority complex about MC that you feel compelled to visit the fansite of another artist to desperately demand approval. I am secure enough in my appreciation of WH that I don't require anyone else's validation, nor do I need to make unfavorable comparisons to others to justify her peerless vocal genius. Her inimitable talent speaks for itself.

If you think that defending MC on a WH board demonstrates bravery, then you are even more hopelessly dense than your self-serving, petty posts already reveal. I am courageous simply by the manner in which I conduct my life on a daily basis by confronting discrimination w/neither reservation nor hesitation & by challenging intolerance often w/o regard to personal risk. Please take your grossly uninformed opinions back to the Friends of MC.

coolwhitney
Global user
(6/29/00 3:06:22 am)
4.48.35.71
i tend to agree with you

whitney should speak up and deny or confirm the charges. the media lies and tells the truth, you just have to figure out when they are being straight and when they are just lying, in whitney's case the media is probably doing a little of both.

rachel2
Global user
(6/30/00 7:47:41 am)
4.16.228.198
Babs isn't that popular

Babs can sell out concerts but I don't think she has alot of fans left, it's more die hard fans that are left. I know when she came to where I live she was going to sing at a 30,000 + stadium but couldn't sell alot of the tickets so chose a place that housed 12,000 or less so I don't think she's that popular. When she does tour she goes to smaller places and not many places, I think she's trying to create the *illusion* she's still very popular.

rachel2
Global user
(7/2/00 1:41:52 pm)
4.16.230.234
Re: Hello OJ murdred some people?

You're wondering whether or not OJ can recover his career when he killed 2 people? He should feel lucky to be in the free world after killing 2 people. Whitney is so not in OJ's league when it comes to scandal, Whitney *can* recover if she doesn't get too much worse.

coolwhitney
Global user
(7/2/00 9:40:57 pm)
4.16.231.15
Re: cuba really made the show

that year, he seemed so grateful to get the oscar and so happy and everyone felt the same way, I thought Cuba derseved the Oscar, he did a great job in jerry m.

 

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