Painfully woke white people yanking TV shows off the air and tearing down statues aren’t helping the racial justice cause, according to the founder of Black Entertainment Television. He says black people “laugh at” these displays.
Removing Confederate statues does nothing for black people, billionaire TV magnate Robert Johnson told Fox News on Wednesday. “It’s not going to give a kid whose parents can’t afford college, money to go to college. It’s not going to close the labor gap…and it’s not going to take people off welfare or food stamps.”
It’s tantamount to rearranging deck chairs on a racial Titanic. It absolutely means nothing.
Johnson took a similarly dim view of removing shows like “The Dukes of Hazzard” or films like “Gone with the Wind” from circulation and firing professors for saying “all lives matter” instead of “black lives matter,” suggesting these moves are “an attempt by white Americans to assuage guilt by doing things that make them feel good” and don’t help black people at all.
“Black people laugh at white people who do this,” the BET founder said, pointing out that black viewers likely made up a significant portion of the viewing audiences of the canceled shows because “they watch more TV.”
Calling performative apologetics from white celebrities on social media “the silliest expression of white privilege that exists in this country,” Johnson suggested privileged white people instead ask black people what they want and listen to their responses. “Embrace being white and do the right thing, and then you don’t have to worry about being sad because you’re white!”
“White Americans seem to think that if they just do sort of emotionally or drastic things that black people are going to say ‘Oh my god, white people love us because they took down a statue of Stonewall Jackson’,” Johnson said before repurposing a famous quote from the now-verboten Gone with the Wind: “Frankly, black people don’t give a damn.”
Johnson, who became America’s first black billionaire in 2001, has plenty of ideas about what black people want. He recently called for a $14 trillion reparations package for descendants of slaves, which works out to about $358,000 for every black American, and believes such a massive financial boost – not self-flagellating demonstrations from privileged white people – is what most black people would like to see emerge from the current climate of racial reckoning.
“Now is the time to go big,” he declared earlier this month, floating the massive number as protests and riots raged across the US following the police killing of George Floyd. But while a few of the Democratic presidential candidates had paid lip service to making reparations part of their platforms early in the race, presumptive nominee Joe Biden has not climbed aboard that bandwagon – yet.
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