One African-American’s Tribute to Bob Johnson, “Responsibility”

After BET founder and billionaire Robert Johnson supposedly obliquely referred to Obama’s drug use at a Hillary rally Sunday, the Hillary camp caught some heat. Unlike the New Hampshire staffer that got fired for doing it, Johnson simply released a breathtakingly implausible statement that when he made the below quote, he was referring to Obama’s time as a labor organizer, and all was apparently forgiven.

“To me, as an African-American, I am frankly insulted that the Obama campaign would imply that we are so stupid that we would think Hillary and Bill Clinton, who have been deeply and emotionally involved in black issues since Barack Obama was doing something in the neighborhood — and I won’t say what he was doing, but he said it in the book — when they have been involved.”


Personally, I was insulted that Robert Johnson, Hillary Clinton or anyone on their staff would think that I — or anyone else –would buy that explanation, which is even harder to swallow when you watch the full video in which Johnson all but winks when he says it (at 1:45). On the other hand, I grew up without cable TV (and white), so everything I know about Robert Johnson and BET I know from media coverage of it.

Wonkette video guru Eric Brewer (who brought you the classic Gregory-Obama dance-off, among other gems) had a different reaction. Eric is African-American and he grew up around these parts and he was slightly more ticked about Johnson’s comments about moral crusades because, he said, “What the fuck does Bob know about moral crusades.” What really ticks Eric off, in fact, is that Bob Johnson “in his speech, says, ‘As an African American’ and then when it comes to the videos he aired and the selling of the station, it’s all just business.” Below is Eric’s heartfelt tribute to Robert Johnson and moral crusades.


Race and Gender Are Issues in Tense Day for Democrats [NY Times]

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