Wednesday, January 3, 2007

First Bill, Now Oprah?

Bill Cosby caught a lot of heat a while back for his blanket condemnation of the Black community's educational priorities. Now add Oprah Winfrey to the list of Black philanthopists who are fed up with the American inner city youth. Oprah recently opened at $40 million dollar school for girls in South Africa. Asked why she chose to fund a school in Africa rather than one in the United States, Oprah replied:

"I became so frustrated with visiting inner-city schools that I just stopped going. The sense that you need to learn just isn't there. If you ask the kids what they want or need, they will say an iPod or some sneakers. In South Africa, they don't ask for money or toys. They ask for uniforms so they can go to school."

I'm not sure what to think about this one. There are bright, less fortunate, kids here that want to learn but are forced to be in classrooms with those that are disruptive and take that experience away from them. There are plenty of little girls here that will not reach their full potential because of their school environment and the pressures and distractions that come along with it. Cracked-out Cinnamon down at Club Ass could have very well been a VP at Price Waterhouse Coopers if given the right environment and grooming. Why not build a school here and set up the same interview process?

On the flip side tho, I can definately see her frustrations because a lot of low income kids here are rocking Jordan's and go home to the projects to play PlayStation 3 on their flat panel TVs, yet don't come to school with paper and pencils because they can't afford it. Our priorities are definately not always where they need to be.

I also realize that poor people in America are balling compared to impoverished nations. I dunno... At the end of the day, Oprah can spend her money as she damn well pleases.

Ignorance: Oprah need to holla at me... we can make this thang work.


The Chairman aka Mr. Smith said...

I try not to get frustrated with my people, but I feel Oprah. (B, I totally agree that you and Oprah should work things out!!!)

The US spends more money than any country in the world. So our school system is screwed up because they have not changed with the times. Thing how technology has changed and our school system is still stuck in the stone age.

The inner city kids' role models are Kobe, Shaq, Rick Ross or some other entertainers. They all make peanuts. When we stop promoting the lastest rims these guys have and promote how many millionaires they can create.

Even the highest entertainer Jay Z and Diddy at $300 Million aren't EVEN CLOSE to the Forbes 400.

Gene said...

The only thing wrong with what Oprah said is that she chose poor words so it made her look like she was generalizing. Surely she doesn't think ALL inner city kids are like that, but I feel her on thinking that enough of them are so giving to MLK High might be a bad investment.

The Chairman aka Mr. Smith said...

Totally agree GENE, The great think about having money is that you don't have to be politically correct as the rest of america.

Upper class blacks have a tough time investing in PS3's for poochie and them. That mind set keeps people poor, so why give money to feed their bad choice?

Brandon said...

I agree with you guys. I guess the way she said it was poorly worded.

When you think about it, if ANYBODY is willing to give $100 to a cause (let alone $40 million), that's better than the nothing that critiques are giving to the cause they're arguing for.

With that being said, if folks are criticizing Oprah for NOT giving money to inner city American kids, they should simply shut the fuck up unless they ARE contributing their own money to that very same cause.

Put up or shut up bitches!

The Chairman aka Mr. Smith said...

The Critic was probably poochie's momma, that didn't have enough money to get all 4 of her kids with 4 and 1/2 baby daddies, the new PS3.

(The 1/2 is for the one kid that we're not sure whose kid it was)

GENE said...

"With that being said, if folks are criticizing Oprah for NOT giving money to inner city American kids, they should simply shut the fuck up unless they ARE contributing their own money to that very same cause."

REAL TALK. I only think Oprah could be criticized if she WASN'T giving. But she is. How dare you tell somebody HOW to give THEIR money?!