Black People It’s Time for a Boycott: The Media Doesn’t Care About Us


President Barack Obama has finally spoken. Since the moment I pulled the lever down in that voting booth to confirm my vote for the first black President I have yearned for him to have a candid discussion about race relations in America. But I was constantly reminded that Obama is America’s president and not just Black America’s president. That he was a politician and not an activist. He cannot speak solely for our community on a world stage because it would not be fair to the rest of the country. The real question is: Why have we accepted that we are undeserving of having our anguish exposed in relevant spaces and to the world?  When will we realize that to remain docile is to condone terrorism?

But today I go online and I see “N-Word” trending on Twitter and I immediately imagine Madea taking her pistol out of her purse and loading it. Because who is trying it today? After Rachel Dolezal I’m prepared for the next racial circus brought to you by White People. Thankfully, I realize that not only did President Obama just use the word nigger in the context of a discussion on race relations; he chose to do this on new media. So many firsts! I was just so refreshed by Obama’s approach and candidness throughout his groundbreaking interview on WTF with Marc Maron. I will be making a post on my favorite quotes from that interview soon.

After listening to the podcast and digesting what I learned, my first impulse was to see people’s reaction. To my surprise, the media actually figured out a way to distract itself again even when the situation is literal. They completely disregarded this magnum-opus occasion from our POTUS to nit-pick about his use of the word nigger while speaking on racism. Ironically, “nigger” did not receive this level of media attention when American citizens and people across the globe referred to President Barack Obama and the First Family as such since they emerged on the political landscape. If you respected yourself enough to form your own opinion instead of falling for the media’s hype and listened to the podcast, you would know that the media’s reaction inadvertently proved Obama’s point on the state of race relations in this country and why he chose new media in the first place. He chose this form of media because traditional news outlets are void of any journalistic integrity let alone basic reasoning skills. For Fox News, CNN, and other outlets to pick out the smallest detail of this momentous occasion truly shows you how pro-supremacist the media has become. The depths of their denial is unprecedented.

If the media cannot even give up the great white hope that racism does not exist and black people don’t matter even when their actual President has just made a statement on the state of emergency in communities across this country, then all hope should be lost now. A sane reaction to the media’s denial would be to boycott these news outlets, which should be simple for my generation. I don’t know about you, but the only time I’m watching something from Fox, MSNBC, or CNN is if some outrageously racist correspondent or guest of that show is making an ass of themselves and it goes viral. Or if experts like Marc Lamont Hill is putting people’s denial in check. Other than that, I cannot tell you the last time I watched the news.

Similar to the obviously racist-driven Charleston Massacre, after Obama’s podcast it is not possible to refuse to acknowledge the racism in this country – so the media totally dropped the ball and exposed itself. I understand that the topic isn’t easy to discuss, even in that interview Obama mentioned gun violence more than he did racism. He could refer to the Newtown shootings with ease, but could never actually verbalize the Charleston shooting as much as he alluded to it. Honestly, this man does not really want to discuss racism. He has been in office since 2008 and countless acts of racist terrorism happened under his administration and he only gave statements about each “isolated” event as opposed to grabbing white supremacy by the horns. Because Obama is in fact today’s politician, and getting real about race might have been a little too just. Or maybe he truly wanted too but had to deal with too much bureaucracy and his lack of white president privilege? Who knows? But for even Obama to finally give no fucks and open up a long overdue dialogue about gun violence, racism, and police reform (in that order, but it should have been racism FIRST and foremost and how closely it’s tied to gun and police violence) and then for the media to essentially paint him as a disgrace was all the proof I needed that they have no intention of caring about us black folk.

So why should we continue to feed them?

It is no secret that traditional media is becoming more and more uncool thanks largely to the Internet changing the overall media landscape. They are already losing viewership for television but these parent-company corporations are also in Hollywood and we need to boycott their films, merchandise, sister networks, and stop applying for jobs in those realms altogether. We need to boycott anything being sponsored by those entities. Black people are tired of suffering at the hands of racism while racists depend on us financially while refusing to give us the credit and respect we deserve. We are stripped of our very right to live let alone being represented fairly in the media. A lot of us want to know what we can do to send a message and I believe boycotting the media would be it. In these times, not even discussing news outlets on social media would be a critical blow.

Was Obama’s discussion on racism as thorough as it could have been? Absolutely not. But like he said, we live in a democracy and progress is gradual. I am just proud that he found the courage to have an honest conversation with the American people, but I am truly disappointed with my country’s reaction to such a necessary topic. To choose denial in the face of honesty is cowardly. Cowardice is the motivation for all that is wrong in America and for the ones who are brave; we need to be the change we want to see. If you agree then start doing your part and boycott the media. Please, share this with your network because the power only lies in numbers.

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Ar. Natsai

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