BET Celebrates Obama Victory With Special Programming

12/07/2008 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011
  • Brian Stelter New York Times

Anchoring a special report on Black Entertainment Television on Wednesday morning, Jeff Johnson introduced a reporter stationed in Atlanta, Jina Johnson, and asked a casual question: "How are you?"

"How am I?" Ms. Johnson (no relation) responded, smiling broadly. "How do you think I am? There's a black president!" She pumped her fist in the air and said she had watched "us become a nation of believers" on Tuesday night.

BET, cable's most prominent channel that features programs for black viewers, celebrated Senator Barack Obama's presidential victory on Wednesday by dropping its regular schedule and saluting the country's first African-American president-elect. Making no secret of their favored candidate, Mr. Johnson and other commentators virtually held the viewer's hand and assured them that the dream of so many African-Americans had, in fact, come true.

On traditional television networks, too, some black journalists shared their emotions on Tuesday night as Mr. Obama's win was projected. A number of commentators appeared misty-eyed as they spoke about the historic nature of the night. In interviews on Wednesday, several correspondents said their personal reflections about the election had no impact on their reporting.

Read more on New York Times