Well, folks, we have our first media hailstorm of 2014 and like the recent fury of storms plaguing the nation, this snow storm is incredibly annoying and needs to go away.
Controversy ensued when liberal trailblazer, professor, and MSNBC talk show host Melissa Harris-Perry passively cosigned with a series of jokes made during her second annual "Look Back at Laughter" program. Via comedy, MHP and a group of comedians reflected upon the most memorable political moments of 2013.
At one point during the program, the first shot of World War III (media edition) was launched when a photograph of once presidential hopeful Mitt Romney's family was displayed. The panelists offered what they thought would be comical commentary about Kieran, Mitt Romney's adopted Black grandchild. Amidst the discussion, Melissa Harris-Perry even chimed in with a (totally not offensive) funny of her own.
Check out the video to see what was said.
Before the commentators could leave their seats, claims of "reverse" racism (whatever that means) and discrimination were launched against Harris-Perry and company.
Pardon me for being blunt, but is this controversy actually happening? Am I missing something? And most importantly, why isn't anyone questioning the fact that this is actually a controversy?
The only potential reason for outrage is the problematic message that is implied (by the guest commentators) about interracial families. To imply that interracial unions are a laughing matter is perhaps distasteful, fair. Makes sense. Recognizing this, Harris-Perry, the product of an interracial union, issued a variety of what seemed to be thoughtful apologies by twitter, message posts, and even on her program.
Yet unsurprisingly, a blizzard of anti-MHP proclamations continued to destroy any roadway towards productive dialogue about interracial adoption/unions. Of course, to even have that discussion we'd have to assume that the majority of those "outraged" actually wanted to entertain such a discussion. The need to question this "outrage" became undeniably clear when Alec Baldwin, the antithesis of respectability, passively berated Harris-Perry for his own self-serving reasons. Like Baldwin, most folk mad at MHP seem to be opportunistically latching upon this controversy for reasons other than the defense of interracial adoption/union.
Anyone halfway paying attention to this "controversy" should see that the motive behind the rebuking of MHP is not a defense of interracial families. The outrage seems to be nothing more than a masked attempt to claim "reverse" discrimination and coyly tear down a politically savvy powerhouse whose entire career mirrors a commitment to diversity. Very few MHP rebukers have adequately defended young Kieran, the African American child that has joined the Romney family. "Ironically," there has been a loud diatribe either against Melissa Harris-Perry's character and also, a big-to-do about the Romney family's right to adopt a Black child.
This controversy has very little merit.
All comedians and commentators commit blunders, as Harris-Perry and company did (although the jury is still out on that one considering the fact that the comments in question were made by the featured commentators). However, she owned up to her "mistake" and apologized for it; unfortunately, apologies (needed or not needed) are not enough to quell thirsty opportunists.
Maybe I am missing something, but this seems like a pathetic attempt to capitalize off of a debatable blunder and to exploit an important subject that very few, especially current critics, would normally want to talk about.