Monday, February 8, 2010

Letter to Oprah

Dear Oprah,

While I respect your ability become on of the most powerful people in America, as a Black woman, I am not a fan. As a matter of fact, there are days where I feel as though I could not dislike you more for the dangerous messages that you have thrown to the public, either intentionally or unintentionally. I do think that you have the ability to philanthropically provide more in terms of becoming inspiring to young Black women. I have heard many sisters, younger and older, describe their desire to be like you; however, I think that they would like having your image and power and not your character. In fact, I am blogging so angrily right now about your current show topic, "Inside the Minds of Child Molesters" and it is not even half way over. I am not a fan, Oprah; I do not watch your show regularly. I used to want to be like you too, but it was about being capable of casting a positive shadow and outlet for young Black women to grow into if they so choose. I'm not perfect. I'm not wanting to be revered as a goddess; I do, however, want to help provide education and inspiration to Black girls at home, because heaven knows that they need it, especially if some parents just aren't providing it for them. The fact is, O, that while you prance around like you went from Sophia to Harpo Industries and should be worshiped on that basis alone, you have become, in my eyes, not much more than a high-folutin' Auntie, and I honestly just can't take it any more.

Oprah, what the hell is this "Inside the Minds of Child Molesters" bullshit? You made quite a few counterrevolutionary points, and as a survivor of sexual abuse, you should know better! My becoming physically ill at your show today was the last straw because, you know what? It was not the first time and I think that you just have to be stopped. There is no respect in my disagreement because you very rarely pick a stance and stay in it; Oprah, I was honestly proud of you for putting your foot down with the Chris Brown situation. Can you just tell me why you did a segment that pretty much decriminalized child molesters? At one point, you made the comment that if child molestation is done right, it will not hurt and agreed with a molester that parents have to be more aware! My stars, I am so very disappointed in the positive you could have done with this.

I understand that these people are people; but you know what? Not all child molesters have the gall to puff up their chests and contend that they did these acts because they love children. As a matter of fact, I've read studies that say that the molestation is not about the child, but about children in general, especially if they are prepubescent. I am willing to bet that many survivors of child sexual abuse have been triggered as a result of this show.

I am very deeply and sincerely disappointed in you. I am confused by your motives in this show because it never really got to a point. In fact, it was just kinda like "hey, look at me, I'm interviewing child molesters". I would like to hope that you wanted to do good in this endeavor, but I would also be willing to say that you are have failed. I hope that your fame and attention grabbing is worth all of the negative that you have potentially caused.

Be Righteous.


  1. So was it the title that upset you right off the bat? I'm trying to figure out without having seen the episode just exactly what was wrong with the show. I didn't get much info in the post outside of that one line which was rather foolish. So tell me, what exactly pissed you off?

  2. Well, the thing is the amount of sympathy that she offered the molesters, coupled with the poor editing of the interview -- because I think that it is detrimental the motivation of victims of CSA to hear offenders saying that they felt the child was asking for it, and to hear a co-survivor co-sign that bullshit. It was outrageous. I know Oprah has a job to do, but you know what? When is it too much?
    I think that raising awareness is one thing, but there was a line that was crossed when she began to, in a sense, victim blame. I can't imagine this was her intention, however it was awful! And then blaming the parents who, believe it or not, probably have their share of trauma to deal with as a secondary victim. I'm not saying that parents should not be held accountable for certain things to a certain extent, but shifting the blame from the child molesters was just out of line. The show was just plain sickening and it wasn't about the title. I enjoy getting in the minds of sick people; that's not the problem. I just think that she has a certain responsibility as someone with so much power and clout to know better and DO better than turning something with the potential to be great in "raising awareness" to victim blaming, bashing, and offender sympathy.

  3. check out the works of Alice Miller on child abuse such For Your Own Good...which explains how such people including folks like Hitler emerge to become what they are.

    please do check her out!

  4. Thanks! I will certainly check it out!