I believe there’s something that has saturated the waters of our community during the past few weeks. The water is infected with a virus of hateration, and also a tinge of hypoceration in this danceree. From Kim Burrell’s message of gloom, to the social media response to Eddie Long’s death, to Steve Harvey and his mustache visiting Trump, to Jennifer Holiday, now Travis Greene being tapped to tap dance for the president – they all have participated in an extreme version of ashyness the past few weeks that many cannot understand.
So…who has gone crazy?
Kim Burrell, her apologists and firing squad
Let’s start with Kim Burrell. The fact that the church wants to show mercy to her when they refuse to show the same mercy to LGBT members is hypocritical to say the least. Before the new year rang in, she was caught on video disparaging gay members, evoking death for those that “play wit it.” Burrell is known in the gay community as an auntee within the church. Personally, the first time I was introduced to her music as an adult was by a black gay man. One can only hypothesize that behavior of those that stand with her contributes to how many undercover men in the church live double lives that denigrates the black family structure, gay or straight.
Imagine being called a sissy at school, then called a perversion at church, wouldn’t that have an impact on your self esteem? It’s proven that this activity later leads to anxiety and depression, which can also lead to sexually irresponsibility. I saw one pastor on Facebook saying his members “bet not” be gay…”or else.” I also saw gay people agreeing with her. We’re talking about crazy check opinions here. On the other hand, where is the love? I do not believe in throwing people away. What if you were thrown away after you said something dumb? Sometimes you have to lose it all in order for your perspective to change and understand the effects of your words, not only your actions. Let’s do better church.
Eddie Long apologists and grave abusers
Then, let’s discuss the death of New Birth Baptist Church pastor, Bishop Eddie Long. This past week across social media black people (mostly church people) rebuked any conversation about his accused sexual misconduct. Since when is it okay to silence victims? Also, since when is it okay to disrespect a grieving family? Doesn’t it make sense to celebrate the good if all you knew him for was that — feeding the hungry, praying for the sick, providing single parents cars and rent? We have to find a just medium. Some of the same people judging Long will two-step to an R. Kelly track, but he’s been accused of giving golden showers to little girls since the 90s. Let’s do better y’all.
Steve Harvey, bringing the Whispers mustache into the 2010s, was one of the latest melanated faces to exit President-Elect Donald Trump’s bronze elevators. The issue was not with Steve visiting Trump, it was his lack of basic knowledge or care about Attorney General pick, Jeff Sessions, a man that is in favor of stop and frisk, the law that was ruled unconstitutional by federal courts. It was also the fact that Harvey is not an expert on anything but comedy, mustaches and giving money away. There are black policy experts and business tycoons with deeper pockets and greater influence than Harvey. I don’t believe that anyone in the country thinks of Steve Harvey when the words urban planning/renewal come to mind (also Ben Carson wouldn’t come to mind to lead HUD either *sips cranberry tea*).
Jennifer Holliday, Chrisette Michele and Travis Greene
Let’s not forget this craziness. Legendary icon to gay men everywhere Jennifer Holliday and gospel singer Travis Greene were booked to participate in Donald Trump’s inaugural celebrations. Holiday came to her senses and later canceled, but her accepting a celebration for an Administration that is led by VP-elect Mike Pence who fought LGBT discrimination laws is disrespectful to the fan base, just like with Burrell’s issue. Chrisette Michele agreed to perform at Trump’s inauguration. The issue with her was not only in her acceptance, but her response. She invoked the words of Dr. King, stating in an open letter, “Our lives begin to end, the day we become silent about what matters.” Chrisette, MLK was talking about the tearing down of white supremacy and white progressives being silent about segregation and police brutality when he spoke those words, not the opportunity for you to sing A Couple of Forevers at the 2017 version of a Klan rally. You are crazy. Now, gospel singer Travis Greene is scheduled to perform. Precious lamb.
His booking comes on the heels of Congressman John Lewis boycotting the events, Trump disrespecting one of the largest black cities in America (Atlanta) and again…on the same week of the confirmation hearings and sit-ins by the NAACP against Jeff Sessions, a man that believes it’s okay for people of color to be stopped by the police for being black.
Many of the same people that were crucifying Harvey for meeting with Trump agreed with Greene’s appearance, calling it “ministry.”
Listen, it’s not our place to determine ministry but it’s insulting to disguise a business opportunity as ministry. Trump’s campaign has hit a record with donations for his inaugural activities, so they will be throwing cash at any black face they can put on stage. If a Bruce Springsteen cover band turned Trump down, why would your ashy behind fill his place? Let us not forget, there was also an ashy black pastors coalition that attended a press conference in support of Sessions for a fair hearing. Did we forget that President Obama could not even get a hearing for his Supreme Court pick, Justice Merrick Garland? Talk about crazy.
All of these events have one thing in common, hypocrisy. It’s not good for your brother or sister…until you receive the call. Or if the personality is not your favorite, they are subject to a completely different set of moral standards and a special version of grace.
I’ll be glad when this ash is over. Let’s take care of ourselves, be vigilant, hope that 2017 turns out to be better than this and call out ashy hypocrisy whenever it rears it’s ugly head.