Oprah Winfrey, enemy of hip-hop
I basically never watch Oprah myself, obviously, but my mom will catch it from time to time and alert me if there’s going to be something interesting. For example, who can forget the episode back in the late ’90s when she admitted that she used to hit the pipe back in the day? It’s no wonder she has so many issues with her weight.
And didn’t she once have a nasty, back-alley abortion? This wouldn’t make sense, in the sense that I don’t think she’s quite old enough to have been out there like that pre-Roe vs. Wade. But she is from the South, so who knows?
I remember way, way back in the day, there was an entire episode dedicated to hip-hop legend McHammer. He showed up with the 200-or-so jigs he had on payroll at the time and, um, did the McHammer dance or whatever. But other than that, I don’t know that I’ve ever seen any rappers on Oprah.
Supposedly, Ludacris was on the show recently and there was a bit of an issue. He was there as part of the ensemble cast to the mediocre Oscar-winning film Crash, but Oprah made it a point to get all Bill O’Reilly on him because he likes to rap about hoes. And then she edited out a lot of his comments in response.
In the aftermath, it’s been suggested that Oprah might have some sort of issue with hip-hop. For example, Ice Cube wasn’t invited to her show about the film Barbershop despite the fact that he was both the film’s star and producer. And I don’t know that she’s actually had a rapper on to perform since the days of McHammer.
This would seem an issue in an age when you have a group like Three-6-Mafia winning Academy Awards and doing the Crunchy Black dance in front of ancient crackety-cracks like Jack Nicholson and Warren Beatty. If rap can go on all of these other shows, how come rap can’t go on Oprah?
Meanwhile, Oprah swears up and down that she loves hip-hop. In fact, she’s good friends with that noted psychopath Mary J. Blige and has been known to keep a copy of 50 Cent’s “In da Club” on her iPod. As if either one of these facts should make much of a difference at all.
Here’s the thing: As far as TV is concerned, Oprah is probably the most influential institution other than American Idol. Artists who appear on her show are exposed to a vast audience and experience a significant increase in sales.
To have hip-hop artists banned from Oprah is roughly tantamount to MTV banning videos by black artists in the early ’80s. In an age when the best, and best-selling, rap album is something like King, I don’t think we can afford to have hip-hop banned from any media outlet.
Her little weak-ass apology is not enough. If Oprah wants to prove she’s down with hip-hop, she should put her money where her mouth is and have some rappers on her show. If not, the hip-hop community should attack.
I don’t care how many billions she’s worth; she’s still a crackhead with a mangled vagina, and she might need to be taken down a notch.