Black men have every right to criticize Gayle King for her questions about Kobe Bryant because of this country’s egregious treatment of black men.
My only question is what took black men so long to begin openly fighting back? Was their silence part of a belief system that the meek shall inherit the Earth?
King, like a number of black women, have used their access to national television programs to attack black men. Yet, the networks don’t provide black men equal time to respond to these verbal assaults.
Black men have been angry for a long time about being demeaned and viciously attacked. They have held inside their anger, only discussing how they felt with close friends so they would not be perceived as misogynistic.
As the “Color Purple” black-male bashing campaign of the mid-to-late 80s slowly subsided, a friend told me he hoped it was finally was over. “It’s been very difficult,” he said.
Another friend said “angry black women hung their husbands” every night.
I don’t buy King’s excuse that she was undermined by her co-workers at CBS to play a negative film clip about Bryant.
King, an anchor on “CBS This Morning,” took to Instagram in response to a social media backlash over her interview with Lisa Leslie, a former star of the WNBA and a longtime friend of Kobe’s. King interviewed Leslie shortly after Bryant’s death.
To promote the five-and-a-half-minute interview, CBS aired a 94-second video in which King asked Leslie about a woman’s 2003 sexual assault accusation against Bryant, who was killed last month in a helicopter crash. “I know if I had only seen the clip, I’d be extremely angry with me,” King posted on Instagram.
Bryant was never convicted of sexual assault because the woman refused to testify against him and the matter was resolved privately, but in the minds of most people, including many black women, black men are always guilty of something.
Bryant said the sex was consensual (The New York Post posted a story yesterday with the headline the woman was not raped. The story was written by a reporter who covered the trial.))
The country’s history is rife with white women claiming they were raped by a black man.
One of the worse cases, and there are many terrible cases, is written about in the book “The Lynchings in Duluth” by Michael Fedo. Irene Tusken, a 19-year-old white woman, charged that three black carnival workers raped her. The police chief of Duluth, Minnesota had a physician examine Tusken.
The doctor found that she had not been raped. That finding did not stop a white mob from dragging the men from their jail cells and lynching Elias Clayton, Elmer Jackson and Isaac McGhie. In 2003, Duluth erected a monument honoring the men who were murdered.
It’s pretty clear how society sees and hates black men, and King knows it and takes advantage of it. She would have to be blind not to know this.
When black men walk down the street, women clutch their purses out of fear. Black men are followed in stores because employees are convinced they are there to steal.
Let’s not forget the local television news, where black men being arrested, shot or killed are the lead story. These stories confirm views many, including black women, unfairly hold about black men. I am sure members of King’s staff are uncomfortable around black men.
Why didn’t King or CBS attempt to contact the woman Bryant had sex with to hear her side of the story?
I am sure when King asked Leslie the question about Bryant, she didn’t expect any blowback. Afterall she went after R. Kelly and heard nothing.