Was Toure “Niggerized” by MSNBC in His Forced Apology?
by Dr. Boyce Watkins, KultureKritic.com
The comedian Toure on MSNBC’s “The Cycle” just had a rough week. I refer to him as a comedian because he’s not exactly the most serious political commentator on television. He’s more likely to be the guy seeking out the best sound bite and his career as a commentator on music and entertainment is hardly a fit for a show that should be hosted by someone like Howard University Political Science professor Dr. Wilmer Leon.
This week, Toure said that the Republicans were seeking out the “niggerization” of President Barack Obama by labeling him to be a liberal extremist. Shortly after making his remarks, phone calls were made to NBC, and someone likely had one of “those” conversations with Toure behind closed doors. Within 24 hours, Toure came out apologizing like a fifth grader who stole videogame money out of his mother’s purse. Obama may have been niggerized politically, but Toure was also niggerized and punked by MSNBC.
Of course Toure is better known for his tacky, yet memorable comments than his thought-provoking analysis. I remember Toure referring to Tyler Perry films as “Cinematic Malt Liquor for the Masses” during our joint appearance on CNN a few months ago. As I told Tyler when he called, I’m not a big fan of his films, but I was hoping that Toure could at least come up with an intelligent way to defend his words.
Also, Toure’s over the top Twitter comment about Roland Martin not being able to have kids shows that he’s arguably a petty, nasty human being. In spite of all this, I can’t figure out for the life of me is why a man would make such a bold statement on television and then back off of his remarks just 24 hours later. But that’s when I am reminded that life on the plantation creates a space where lies become the truth, and folks have you pretending that you didn’t mean to say something that you’d been preparing to say for hours.
Yvette Carnell and I discuss the Toure situation in the video below. But the lesson here is simple: Even when you are given access to the biggest and shiniest opportunities, it’s important to remember that dumbing yourself down to achieve acceptance and validation from mainstream institutions can lead you to become half the man you were in the first place.
Part of the reason that black images are so readily distorted by media is because we don’t own any media. So many of us are forced to tell the lie to keep our oppressors happy and we find that a paternalistic pimp can be just as bad as an abusive one. Toure’s public lashing by MSNBC is the type of humiliation that many of us receive when we step out of line and are reminded of who’s the boss. Maybe Toure should have been a “good boy” in the first place.
The video is below:
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