D.L. Hughley = D.W. Griffith

The period following the Civil War was a progressive era for American democracy in the South as many states began reforms like compulsory public education.  But that history was obscured by the image left by a film called “The Klansman” or “Birth of a Nation” by D.W. Griffith, still considered by many whites one of the greatest films of all time.

The 2008 election will also be one of the most historic elections in American history, but the misguided decision by CNN to damage its credibility with the equally outrageous D.L. Hughley show could leave the impression that African-Americans spent this year mired in silliness and self-hate.

“This show needs to be cancelled. Sorry. I really think that the viewers need to make their opinions known,” is one of the comment to my earlier blog on this abomination.  When Birth of A Nation came out, the nascent NAACP demonstrated in a hundred cities around the nation, blocking its showing in many places.

i think the best way to protest immediately is to refrain from watching CNN over this critical election weekend and on Election Day.  Legions of African-Americans have become far more interested in political news than before, boosting the ratings of cable and broadcast channels.

The thanks we get are the D.L. Hughley Show and Chocolate News.   In addition to filling the lines in early voting and on Election Day, make a vote about the way we are portrayed.

Do you really want to come to work and face someone who just watched D.L. Hughley on Monday morning.

Let them know any references to that show will be considered harrassment.

For more background on how black overachievers are treated in the workplace, consult my book Success Secrets of Black Executives.   A new study shows people are more likely to talk about this election than ever and often minorities find themselves facing intolerant comments.

It is also a scenario affecting black entrepreneurs.  Trouble in the Air: State of Black Business shows how difficult their situation has been.

My commentary “Is there an Obama play in the market?” is in the October edition of the New York  Society of Security Analysts newsletter with additional background.


One thought on “D.L. Hughley = D.W. Griffith

  1. I seriously associate the performance of D. L Hughley’s “comedy” to BET videos showing half naked “hoes” in the name of free enterprise – capitalism. It is one thing to to laugh at oneself but another to degrade yourself. The latter is what this actor has perfected. As evidenced with BET, one can entirely ride a crest of success at the expense of a people stereotyping, furthering the negative outlook for the kids that are exposed to all this nonsense.

    His career is not exactly at infancy that he cannot look at the flip side of what he is doing. Just as some actors turn down the roles they deem degrading or humiliating, black America actors should vehemently refuse to play along roles that seek to turn all the gains made on racism around. It has been hard enough as it is with all the barriers without having to reverse even the psychological advances made thus far. For example, if Barack Obama was a white democrat running against John McCain the polls right now would be reading something like 60/40 or better for the democrats. The truth is, it has been an uphill battle for Obama to gain especially white rural vote. Just as he has gained this turn around, which we all should applaud, black stereotyping rears it’s ugly head from one of it’s own. This is exactly what we have seen with the use of the word nigger. If those among the black successful comedians would seriously quit using it as well as discourage their audiences, it would be soon than later be off the vocabulary.

    When you are in a privileged position like Mr. Hughley you should always strive to do what is right, not necessarily what is popular. After all you can achieve success without stooping too low.

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