Tag Archives: Cornel West

Tom Joyner says Tavis Smiley is only interested in his own legacy…is he right?

Tavis Smiley used to be a contributor on the Tom Joyner Morning Show. Twice a week he would offer his opinion on all things black related. He was an oracle in the community until he took on Barack Obama. Smiley said he wanted to hold candidate Obama accountable and that would have been fair until Smiley crossed into Obama bashing. he left the show but his assualt against the president has been ongoing. Sunday Smiley wrote an editorial below where he laid out his contention that the president is not the MLK embodiment of the dream. That’s fair, but Smiley is not either. Tom Joyner reently said “What do many Republicans, the spokesmen for NRA and Tavis Smiley have in common? Once they start down a road, no matter how dangerous or ridiculously wrong it is, they won’t turn back.” Joyner went on to say “I believe that Tavis is the one fascinated with Dr. King’s legacy, but more importantly Tavis is fascinated with his own legacy, and that’s not good. He wants more than anything to be remembered the way Dr. King was, and to some how make that kind of mark on the world. Dr. King wasn’t concerned about how he would be remembered, he was concerned with doing good and doing right. In the end, that made him great. Tavis has done a lot of good things but his obsession with becoming great is destroying him. The whole issue with the inscription on the King Memorial illustrates the differences between Tavis and Dr. King. Days before he was killed, believing that death was imminent, Dr. King dealt with it publicly in his Drum Major speech. Dr. King knew good things would be said about him in death and he was humbled at the idea of it. Tavis is afraid of what will be said about him and it’s driving him crazy. He points out on the day of President Obama’s swearing in that the President is not the fulfillment of Dr.King’s dream, but maybe a good down payment. I wonder what that makes Tavis, and sadly, does he.” So is this just the latest scuffle between Tom and Tavis? Below you will find the complete text of the Tavis Smiley essay. Read it and share your thoughts.

Barack Hussein Obama will be sworn in as president tomorrow for a second term, on the holiday honoring the person I have long regarded as the greatest American this nation has ever produced. Obama will be in the foreground, but Martin Luther King, Jr. is the backdrop. I’ve heard people exclaim that President Obama is the fulfillment of Dr. King’s dream. Well, not exactly. Obama might be a good down payment, but he is not the fulfillment of King’s dream. We’re still a long way away from that. The interrelated triple threat of poverty, militarism and racism that King talked about still looms large in a yet-deeply-divided America. In the spirit of MLK, it’s time for President Obama to deliver a major policy speech on the eradication of poverty in America. He ought to tell us how the richest nation in the history of the world is going to confront the scourge of poverty. In the spirit of MLK, President Obama should rethink the random use of his favorite weapon – the unmanned aerial vehicle, better known as “drones,” which have killed too many innocent women and children. In the spirit of MLK, President Obama should not continue to feel boxed in by his blackness, but feel liberated in a second term to find ways to push back on the most intractable issue in America — racism. The president wants to channel King so badly that he’s decided to use Dr. King’s Bible at the inauguration ceremony tomorrow. Obama is a politician, and a pretty good one, but King was a prophet. And while I can appreciate the president’s fascination with King’s legacy of unarmed truth and unconditional love, I’m feeling some sort of way about King being used symbolically for public pomp and circumstance, but disregarded substantively when it comes to public policy. Our future as a nation depends on how seriously we take the legacy of Dr. King: Justice for all, service to others, and a love that liberates people. For all the dysfunction that our country is exhibiting at the moment, Dr. King reminds us that the time is always ripe to do right. We should never be afraid to do what’s right, especially if the well-being of a person is at stake. Society’s punishments are small compared to the wounds we inflict on our soul when we look the other way.

Cornel West explains why President Obama should not have used Dr. King’s Bible…is he simply hating on the President?

Watch the clip and share your thoughts. Does Dr. West have a point?

Melissa Harris-Perry says Tavis Smiley sold out blacks like the nurse in the Tuskegee experiment…has this feud gone too far?

melissa and tavis

Tavis Smiley has been accused of alot of things but to be compared to the nurse in the infamous Tuskegee experiement seems a little much. Read the linked story and share your thoughts.


Obama critic Tavis Smiley does not like Mo Kelly talking bad about him

Tavis Smiley has been an ardent critic of the president since he first announced his intention to run for office. Smiley and his traveling companion Dr. Cornel West have been relentless in their criticism of Obama, but Smiley does not take kindly to people talking about him. He has had Mo Kelly served with a cease and desist notice for talking bad about him. Read the link for all the details and share your thoughts.


Cornel West calls President Obama a “Republican in blackface”

Cornel West called the President ” a Republican in blackface.” West and Tavis Smiley have been consistent, staunch critics of the president. He is also very critical of Al Sharpton and Melissa Harris-Perry. Read the linked story and share your thoughts.


Herman Cain is Not going to be the GOP nominee so what does he want?

Herman Cain is now a household name. We know him and most of us are familiar with his 9-9-9 plan, but what does he really want? Does he want to become president or does he simply want to become famous. Is he more of a Sarah Palin type. He says controversial things. He needs to can this plantation talk and why is it if blacks don’t think like he does they are on the plantation? He seems to think his black skin gives him license to insult black people. He is the darling of the right and the left simply see him as dastardly, but it remains to be seen what his real agenda actually is because I for one believe this man has more of a plan than 9-9-9.

Ralph Nader called the president “Uncle Tom”, now he and Cornel West are looking for a liberal to challenge the president

Cornel West is uniting with perennial presidential candidate Ralph Nader to find a liberal to challenge the president in the primary. They are looking a progressive that will push a more liberal agenda. West partnership with Nader is just his latest swipe at the president. It is interesting that West could hook with a man who called the president Uncle Tom during the 2008 presidential campaign. West and Tavis Smiley spent the summer bashing the president on their “Poverty tour” so this is just the fall show. Wonder what’s on the agenda for the winter? Maybe West can hook up with the Tea Party. No, this is not a balanced piece and no it is not objective, and no Cornel West is neither of the two when it comes to the president.

Newsweek: The Black War Over Obama

Cornel West and Tavis Smiley have got to be very happy this week. Their fight with the president garnered them a 2 page spread in Newsweek this week. Allison Samuels addresses the fight that is going on within the black community. Smiley might not be smiling as broadly because he did not get quite as much ink as West, but this battle has staying power so smiley might get more in the next national press evaluation of the two. Poverty existed pre-Obama, during Obama and it will exist after Obama, but is poverty what is really motiviating this ire? Obama is not perfect, but who is? Yes this country has a lot of challenges to solve, but is this negative dialogue going to motivate the poor to vote or in 2012 will they say what’s the use? Is the goal to defeat poverty or to defeat Barack Obama. one has to wonder which one would make the Smiley/West team happier? Tell me what you think. http://www.thedailybeast.com/newsweek/2011/08/14/cornel-west-and-the-black-war-over-obama.html

Tavis Smiley and Cornel West get personal on C-SPAN this Morning

I saw on Twitter that Smiley and West were on C-SPAN this morning so I decided to watch. They are talking about their Poverty Tour, but it is apparent that their dislike for the president goes beyond politics. West made note of the fact that during the 2008 campaign he campaigned for the president. In fact he did 65 events for him, but he went on to say he would not support the president in the primaries. He said he was looking for a Bernie Sanders type candidate. He did say in the general election if Obama faces someone like Michele Bachmann he would vote for the president.  When Smiley was asked if he would support the president he played the media card, but he went on to lament the fact that the president has never invited him to the White House, and also that the president has never appeared on his television show, but he was not complaining. Really? Because it sounded like he was. Smiley and West are members of their own mutual admiration clubs, and in that club there is truly no room for personal reflection or true self-analysis. They are right and the president is wrong, and that is the first rule of membership. My concern when I listen to them is their message is somber. It is true that middle class people are falling into poverty. It is true that the president does need to devote attention to jobs and a job bill, but it is also true that we need to vote, and Smiley made a comment about how people thought they were voting for change in 2008 and look what they got. It is that kind of remark that will make people say why bother, and if people do not vote what they have done is given a vote to the opposition, and maybe if they got a President Bachmann they would yearn for the good old days of President Obama.

Are Tavis Smiley and Cornel West Really trying to give a voice to the poor?

This morning Tavis Smiley and Cornel West appeared on CNN to discuss the poor and their Poverty bus tour. Last night they held a meeting in Chicago and today they are in Detroit. Both Smiley and West are both critics of the president. Smiley said that President Obama was the first president since 1948 to not mention poverty or the poor in his State of the Union address. My question is what can America do to solve poverty? Is it really possible and at this time of economic crisis in the country is poverty a front burner issue? Let’s take the emotion out of the discussion. I am not saying we don’t have a responsibility to feed the hungry, but with the middle class vanishing before our very eyes is this a time to try to solve poverty? How can we break the cycle of generational poverty? Tell me what you think. http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/bestoftv/2011/08/08/exp.am.smiley.west.poverty.cnn?iref=allsearch


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