Sunday, May 3, 2009

Black Award Shows

Constructive Feedback said: (On the "Paula White" post)
"...Few white people are worried that they have not been considered for:
*NAACP Image Award
*BET Award
*Trumpet Award..."

But allow me to disagree; -Any civil rights activist (regardless of color) would be proud to receive an NAACP Image award.

-Robin Thicke and Eminem would love to get a BET Award.

-I have no idea what the Trumpet Awards were (even though I watched most of the telecast).

If these award shows were set up to honor the best Blacks in any given field - fine. But limiting the field to just Blacks usually cuts down on the quality of the competition (Kind of like having the Negro Leagues haven been the de facto MLB and excluding Ruth.) . Doing to others what has been done to you is no justification for a racist practice. I thought these shows were set up to honor the best in any field - but given from a Black perspective. Really, if only Blacks were nominated for Oscars - how many quality Black movies are there?


Constructive Feedback said...

Let me clarify my point.

No doubt about it that the NAACP's award has a specific scope. Per their own judgment the person winning the award has done things positive for Black people.....the type of things that THEY BELIEVE are "positive for Black people". Thus, for example, a judge who has the nerve to assume that Black people are EQUAL under the law and thus repudiate the actions of the New Haven Fire Department which tossed aside the promotions because there were not enough diversity would receive scorn from the NAACP.

My basic point is that "White award" have no more authority to define their scope as being "all of America" as an award show put forth by Black people who also expanded their scope to all.

It all comes down to branding and the perceptions of the credibility and authority of the honor.

Thus "Oprah's Book Club" is a worthy honor. Most authors would love to be considered on the list. The mere placement on this list translates into hundreds of thousands of books sold.

Ultimately what I am arguing is that instead of focusing on the "slight" that is perceived by not being chosen for an award - create one that is credible and more intuned to your own value of worth and don't sweat what others who don't share your value system judge you as.

Tairebabs said...

I have never really considered this as racism but I have to agree with you that the awards can be made to honor the best in any field from a black perspective.

My only concern with calling this out is that i know that we give out awards for things like country and classical music so i don't expect Ricky Martin to be nominated in either category and he cannot claim he has been discriminated against.

RiPPa said...

This is interesting John. I didn't even think Black people even cared about these Black Award shows or even held them in any esteemed regard. A part of me thinks that, sure being recognized by our own is cool, but yet its still not good enough.

Thats the pathology of our condition.

BTW: Soul Plane should have received an Oscar.

RunningMom said...

Ok so the white people had their awards shows and the black people said, why don't we ever get nominated, that's bs, someone needs to recognize the work that our people are doing and if whitey isn't going to do it then we will!

Meanwhile you have some white folks who think, "enter black: movie, actor, actress, cast, producer, writer, singer, author, philanthropist, etc. here) should have been recognized for their work, wtf? And you will have some white folks who just don't care.

So the black folks get together and have their own show for their own people. Great! If the black folks want to only nominate other black folks for their awards, it's their right.

However! Leaders create change. Oprah creates change by saying "I don't care if this isn't a black author, it's a good book. I don't care if it this isn't a white author, it's a good book." RunningMom says "I don't care if it's a "black movie" or a "white movie" - my only question is.. was it good?"

In order to create change you have to be the change. If you want Oscar to recognize more black actors, create the Oscars you want to see. Don't just add to the nonsense, do it better, do it the way you want to see it. If America likes what they see on your awards show better than on the Oscars, guess what - they will start watching and talking and agreeing. And Oscar will go away. No money - no show.

Bottom line - awards and recognition for everything should be based on merit, not skin tone. We all know this. It's not difficult to understand.

Freeman Press said...

OK we'll lets analyze why the Black awards even came into being. Was it because our movies were being judged by another group who couldn't relate. Do you think if there was a great Korean flick that Blacks would say wow that deserves the Image award. To me the awards started because we want to recognize our own greatness not to say uck white people. Why can it be alright for another culture not to include us like lets say the Vietnamese awards but we feel slighted because the whites don't include. Then what uck me up is now we are jumping on our own awards thinking maybe we are being racist? Whuh?

uglyblackjohn said...

@ Constructive Feedback - Okay... I see your point. Thanks.

@ Tairebabs - It's not really racist to have these shows - but it IS racist when people complain about a white (or other) person being honored by these shows (Paula White).

@ Rippa - Soul Plane? I actually found parts of it pretty funny.

But yes, it is interesting that most Blacks value an industry (that usually excludes them) award show more than a Black, Asian or Hispanic award show.

@ RunningMom - Yep. Oprah created a brand that had credibility based on merit - not race.

@ FreeMan - I'm not jumping on the awards shows - they are what they are.
But on those who think that Black awards shows shouldn't honor others who honor Blacks.

Curious said...

To tell you the truth I don't watch many black award shows. Many of them will give awards to people I've never heard of, or to catagories that I don't quite understand. They will limit the prizes to those of a certain hue and exclude those who may have been better but of a different skin. Well actually I don't watch any award shows except for the Oscars and even I recognize that's about politics and who you want to work with rather than talent.

I've forgoten my point.

Let's just say I agree with you.

brohammas said...

UBJ, name two white activists for equality.

uglyblackjohn said...

@ brohammas - Anyone from the "Tim Wise School. I don't mind their intent but I disagree with their reasoning.

uglyblackjohn said...

@ brohammas - Anyone from the "Tim Wise School. I don't mind their intent but I disagree with their reasoning.

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