Naomi Campbell Channel 4 interview

Last night, Naomi Campbell sat down with Britain’s Channel 4 News to discuss why she’s partnered with Bethann Hardison and Iman to speak out against the fashion industry’s practice of regularly excluding models of color.

During the interview, Campbell—who is an absolute legend in the industry—reiterated that while she’s had success as a model, she feels it is her duty to advocate for Black models who do not have a voice.

“It made me stronger, it made me want to rise to the challenge, it made me more determined, more passionate to overcome—that’s me,” she explained when asked how she dealt with discrimination.

Campbell added: “But not all the young models today are like that, and not all are able to speak for themselves. That’s why Bethann Hardison, Iman, and myself have chosen to be the ones to do it for them.”

While Campbell insisted she wasn’t lending her voice to the cause to be a role model, the presenter continuously pressed her to admit that she joined the fight against racism in fashion to reform her personal image.

He continued his inquiry, saying, “You have a reputation, rightly or wrongly, of being an angry person,” and asked if the model’s anti-racism activism was an example of “good anger.”

To her credit, Campbell did not take the bait. The supermodel explained that she was not “angry,” but rather passionate about advocating for Black models. She also rejected his attempt to frame her as  just another “an angry Black woman,” instead of a woman concerned about her community.

Check out the interview below and let us know what you think!

Did the interviewer try to present Naomi Campbell as an “angry Black woman?” 

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    to be black and aware is to be angry……..

  • Annoyed

    Good for her and to hell with him.

  • Lola

    God forbid a journalist asks questions about anger to a woman who’s beaten up several of her assistants, been found guilty of assault. and was banned from flying with British Airways for years after having one fight too many with their flight attendants.

  • Kim

    What she and Iman are doing has nothing to do with her “anger issues”.

  • Yb

    How about God forbid a journalist plays into a centuries old racial stereotype to dismiss a woman’s very legitimate claims towards racism in an industry.

    How about God forbid white people stop using stereotypes to dismiss and trivialize the legitimate feelings of people of color.

    How about God forbid Lola actually get off her ass and make a difference like Naomi instead of criticizing behind her computer.

  • PGS

    Naomi was NEVER “the only black model” back in the 80s/90s. There were other Black popular models–Tyra, Roshumba, Veronica Webb, etc. Naomi has just had the longest career. Can’t fault her for that.

  • PGS

    I’m sorry…what does Naomi have to do with Beyonce?

  • http://crystallamar.com Crystal

    Her patience with this man lasted longer than mine would have.

  • Yb

    If you knew anything of the fashion world you would Tyra Banks and her eating habits ended her high fashion career, not Naomi. Her commercial fashion career thrived. How could naomi end your fashion career when you graced Sports Illustrated and became and Victoria’s Secret model. Tyra the scapegoating, perpetual victim ended her own career. Models like Beverly Peele and Khadija thrived at the same time as Naomi, so what’s Tyra’s excuse.

    And how does opening for Versace and being on the September cover of Interview mean your career is over. C’mon.

  • Yb

    Kdahija, Beverly Peele, Iman, Alex Wek, Grace Jones, Anna Fiona,….. The list goes on and on.

  • http://gravatar.com/nolakiss16 binks

    Typical, I swear to some people black women can’t be passionate or excitable about an issue but just label angry. It is just another tactic to deter people from listening to us or saying our words, opinions or feelings doesn’t matter. Personally, I like Naomi she is a bit of a diva but she never waived on who she is…love her or hate her.

  • http://www.lillian-mae.com Knotty Natural

    Past her career? You must be blind! Naomi still rips the runway in very high profile fashion shows! She’s still, killing the model game!

  • PGS

    Again, I don’t see the point in evoking Beyonce.

    But since you did, Beyonce has gone out of her way to project an air of “perfection,” while Naomi has always shown folks exactly who she was–for better or worse.

    I don’t think Naomi has been given “a pass,” she’s been dragged FOR YEARS. She’s been labeled an a crazy diva, a drug addict, a b*tch.

    So how does she get a pass? Because we allow her to speak her mind, while Beyonce is still censoring herself?

  • BeReal

    Naomi is the same bone they been throwing y’all since the 90s. Carry on.

    Question, how many OTHER black models were riping those SAME shows while Naomi was or did she meet their one black girl qouta?

  • Lola

    What I know is that I don’t beat people up and don’t have a record for assault like Saint Naomi Tyson Campbell.

  • BeReal

    PGS

    Wow! Who knew conducted yourself with dignity grace and humility was “an air of perfection” while throwing fists and phones is just keeping it real. Ok.

    Don’t shy away from the angry black woman image if that’s the case.

    ” She’s been labeled an a crazy diva, a drug addict, a b*tch.”

    Because she is!

  • Naomi Dumbbell

    Wtf is wrong with these black people with perpetual victim mentality?

    I can’t wrap my mind over the fact that this is a multi-millionaire talking and begging whiteys for a spotlight and some validation. What is she, brain dead? Stop giving them money, start your own clothing line, hire Black models, make money off white people. That’s what THEY do. Why? Because they are intelligent and actually look out for themselves (as they should) unlike you self-hating dunce chasing after some white woman’s husband.

    Seriously, even bummy-ass Kanye West has a fashion line.

    Stay whining. Dummy.

  • https://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    Thank you!

  • aziza123

    Why won’t she start a label and hire all the models she wants to see? I understand that begging is easier than doing something productive…

    Those are european labels, and if they only want white models…SO BE IT!

  • aziza123

    Omg. Are we related? My feelings exactly. I can’t stand those whiners.

  • https://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    This is true, but people tend to have empathy for those who are real, flaws and all. Pun intended. No one really cares to give the benefit of the doubt to a phony. When your entire career persona is built on some narcissistic idea that you are pure perfection and that everyone wishes the could be you, it doesn’t really make people want to hear your “plight”. Because how could you even have a “plight” when you’re “perfect”? Right.

    So don’t get mad a the general public for being unsympathetic to a woman who presents herself as above human kind.

  • https://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    Good for Naomi. I found the interviewer quite rude.

  • https://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    I agree with this as well. If they started a black fashion week, that would be incredible.

  • mostexhalted30

    Jeez, calm down Lassie. The focus of the interview was strictly about race and the modelling industry. Whatever issues you seem to have with Naomi’s personal life, take it up with her. Or better yet find a Youtube video where Naomi discusses her personal life and legal troubles where your comments will have some sort of relevance amongst the other imbeciles who keeps track of all her public/private spats. Also, she has twitter account. Please, go there and give us a break from the rants.

  • mostexhalted30

    And this is why we must put education at the forefront with our government. What the hell are you talking about? Please tell me you are not alluding to the dark/light skin issue because chile you need to have several seats! If this is the case you better RUN to your nearest library, go through every section there and educate yourself. As of right now you are the result of spending too much time on blogs, Youtube, or what have you. I’m going to pray for your mental recovery boo. #JustBeingReal

  • Phillygurl

    Who cares if she has been angry in the past, that isn’t what the interview was about and I am glad she did not allow him to divert from the topic at hand. She might be angry but he was being a butthole.

  • guest

    This is retarded. Why are black people constantly begging on their knees to be accepted by an industry that DOESN’T have to include them? Fashion is 100% subjective and is contingent on their target audience and consumer base. Why would these top designers include black women when quite a few of them have EXPLICITLY stated that they don’t want black people to wear their clothes PERIOD?

    But black women are still crawling and begging when they don’t have to. Need I remind you that all of these women on this committee are multimillionaires and have decades of experience in the fashion industry? Do I need to connect the dots on what these women should do?

    #slavementality

  • Naomi Dumbbell

    “Do I need to connect the dots on what these women should do?”

    You probably do lol. That’s some sad stuff.

  • Jen

    I never thought of that: if I have a beef with a celebrity, I should just go pick a fight with them on Twitter, lol! Look out, Jackée from 227! I’m coming for you!

    jk

  • Peachy

    Right…She’s mean not because she is a black woman, but because she doesn’t know how to control her emotions.

  • stella45

    @bereal,

    do you have a life? were you personally victimized by Naomi? you are ALL over this comment board, spewing your hate for this woman. relax, you seriously have issues within yourself that you need to sort out- taking them out on a famous model (who, shocker! has faults!) is not going to help. each and everyone of us could do the same with every celebrity who has made mistakes in the past- what would that do? those mistakes don’t define her, just as your mistakes don’t define YOU, and even if she did, she does NOT owe you an apology, and she does NOT owe you a sound recording of the apology she made to people she has hurt in the past.

    BOTTOM LINE- this article is about a black woman rallying for more black models to be recognized and hired in fashion shows. Naomi’s already made a name for herself, she’s not obligated to do this. Maybe if this was a doctor, or businesswoman advocating for the cause of black woman aspiring to be like them, you’d have more respect (note that this is not her problem- its yours :) ).

    The problem here is that she’s being called out for this in a way that’s not constructive- the interviewer was simply trying to paint her with a broad brush: the stereotypical angry Black woman, who always has something to complain about. Black women are STILL rallying because there’s still work to be done!!!

    I hope you’re not so dense as to miss the point that this is bigger than the “i love Naomi fan club”.
    Attitudes like yours make me sick. You’re being more divisive than anything. We’re a minority group and we want to be taken seriously, want to be a force to be reckoned with, and you’re pulling high school “well, she did this thing x years ago..” BS? Please tell me, what has changed in the world since you’ve left all these comments about Naomi? Are you rallying for anyone’s cause…or are you just a pathetic excuse for a distraction?

  • Shanti

    @Perspective

    Are you advocating patriarchy? Basically are you of the belief that men are somehow superior to women and must lead us in the right direction. You are right when you say men set the tone in the fashion industry. Gay men. But your whole black women are in a sad position because black men aren’t leading them in the right way is simply nonsense.

  • Eyes Wide Shut

    For those that are calling BS on Naomi and Iman:

    I understand what you posters are saying “Why don’t they start their own labels, modelling agencies, etc.?”

    It’s a lot harder than that.

    #1 – you have to start your own advertising agencies. You think the show “Mad Men” is really fiction? Those Madison Avenue agencies are notoriously racist. Trust me, from the Mad Men era of the 1950s till now, White men run that show up to this day…….for blacks that’s an uphill battle…….. (I know that there are black ad agencies but they don’t have the same power as the Madison Avenue boys). The fashion corporations and publication corporations run to these guys for their insight on advertising campaigns that you see in Vogue, Bazaar, W, etc. If these guys don’t think XYZ Model of Color is not a good choice for the product campaign, guess what? You not going to see them!

    #2 – The publication corporations – Conde Nast, etc. The CEO of Conde Nast is the real “Devil Wears Prada”. This is the one that Anna Wintour MUST answer to! These are the guys and gals who gave Andre Leon Talley a hard time. These are the guys who run the above-mentioned glossies (fashion magazines). They are in cahoots with the ad agencies. If ad agency tells these guys that XYZ Model/Celebrity of Color would not drive sales, guess what? You not seeing them on the cover! (Or anywhere else in the magazine! Don’t matter what Anna Wintour says.

    #3 – the fashion corporations – during Naomi’s height of popularity (the 90s), the designers ran their own products. The designers had the final say with regards to which models walked the shows, which models got into their ad campaigns etc. If the modelling agencies gave black models a hard time, guess what? They can just run to the designers themselves for help. (Actually due to the racism Naomi received from the modelling agencies, she became real buddy buddy with the designers and photographers themselves. And this racism was flat out blatant. Naomi wasn’t getting the same pay as her peers for doing the same work! Things were so bad fellow supermodels Linda Evagelista and Christy Turlington refused to walk many shows unless Naomi got the SAME pay! In fact, I suspect this racism might have fueled Naomi’s drug problems and temper issues).

    Now, many of the designers have melded into massive conglomerates like LVMH (Louis Vuitton Moet Hennesy) and Kering (owned by Salma Hayek’s billionaire husband who fathered a child with Linda Evangelista, another supermodel….wink wink). Some designers control their own stuff while many others have been “absorbed” into these conglomerates. End result, designers have very little say on which models will represent what. Like Andre Leon Talley said, the designers themselves aren’t racist and neither maybe the editors of the glossies like Anna Wintour (she isn’t racist, just a snob. I applaud her for publicly denouncing Kim Kardashian but seriously, read up on her history, she has supported many designers and models of color too), but if these conglomerates feel that models of color won’t sell “labels”, guess what? You not seeing them in no advertisements, shows, etc.

    #4 – the modelling agencies – these are in cahoots with #s1-3. Basically, if 1-3 feel that models of color won’t sell certain clothes, make-up lines, etc. YOU ARE NOT GOING TO SEE THEM IN THE SHOWS!

    #5 – celebrities – these are the main competition of models of color when it comes to advertisments. If you notice, there aren’t many celebrities of color that scream “haute couture”. (I am seriously tired of seeing Halle Berry, Beyonce, Rihanna, etc touted as “haute”.) Gabourey Sidibe making the cover of Elle was a mess. We need more Grace Joneses, Danai Guerira (sp? Michonne from the Walking Dead), etc. Basically, the more actresses of color that are popular, the more you will see them in advertisements. If this happens, then you will see more change on the runways on up.

    Sorry for the thesis.

    I understand many people’s frustration with w/ Naomi, Iman etc. always complaining. I do. But like Andre Leon Talley said, the “system” is racist to the core. And as I pointed out, as long as the board of directors of these corporations and conglomerates are white males, not much will change. At least Naomi, Iman, Bethann Hardison and Andre Leon Talley are putting then on full blast.

    You gotta start somewhere.

    Eyes Wide Shut

  • 9Boots

    @Eyes Wide Shut

    You are spot on, the good news is we can do 1-5 ourselves! We don’t have to take over the fashion industry we need to just redirect the black dollar by creating our own black fashion industry and if other races by our products then great. The motto is “created by us for us”. With blacks now having 1 Trillion Dollars in purchasing power we would be foolish to not get in on our own piece of the pie. American blacks are like the 6th largest population of blacks in the world. We need to look at ourselves as our own nation and start making strategic moves when it comes to business.

  • JS

    Agree with everything except for I think you give the ad agencies too much credit. There is no reason why they would have to start their own agency. The thing with agencies it’s their job to make you think they can do a better job than what you can do and make you think that the idea you gave them, they came up with. Anyone with a creative mind and an eye for design could be a one person agency.

    Plus agencies are a slave to the client so while the big fashion conglomerates and magazines may run to them for strategic information, there is already a vision in their mind. It is very hard and tricky for ad agencies to have any real control in the campaigns they make. It takes a great deal of trust on the clients part and most of the times giving them free reign means multiple edits until all autonomy is lost.

    Sorry, while I don’t disagree with you that there are barriers in place to keep the power in check in the same breath I don’t think it would be impossible to do. However, I do think they would have better results trying to fix this from the inside out, rather than start their own companies and try to assimilate them into the industry, they will run into the same problems.

  • guest

    @ Shanti

    “Basically are you of the belief that men are somehow superior to women and must lead us in the right direction.”

    It’s not about a position of superiority and inferiority. Its about the responsibilities that you shoulder. It’s a meritocracy, not a dictatorship. Men don’t have a divine right to lead because they were born with a penis. Men have traditionally led because they assumed the most responsibility. Are you going to let someone Rick James YOUR couch in YOUR house that YOU paid for? Of course not. The same applies to the role of leader in any community. If you are responsible for the economic infrastructure of your group, then you are the boss.

    If black women want to destroy the “evil patriarchy” (that doesn’t exist), then you need to step up to the plate. Not by depending on white men for corporate JOBS (which black men unfortunately do), but by building and maintaining your own shit. No excuses. No apologies. You have to pay the cost to be the boss, and in the BC, neither black men nor black women have stepped up to the plate.

    Black women have yet to show any motivation, compulsion, or track record of doing this, and because black boys are disproportionately being raised by black women, how do you expect black men to learn? Obviously black women don’t know how to do this, because if they did they would already be doing it and black men who came out of single mother homes would be strong, productive men instead of weak, miserable failures.

    If your argument is that this is some inherent trait of men, then that falls flat on its face, considering that the majority of black men don’t even realize what they’re NOT doing. All you have is a sea of “good little negroes” with high paying JOBS that white men ALLOWED them to have.

    It also contradicts your argument about superiority and inferiority. If men inherently do these things and what you do determines your position, then by that logic men are supposed to be in the leadership position by default. Those were your words, not mine.

    “But your whole black women are in a sad position because black men aren’t leading them in the right way is simply nonsense.”

    Nonsense? Well how do you explain this? Why are black women crying and complaining about their lack of promotion in what WHITE MEN have established for THEIR WOMEN? And the kicker is they are sitting up there wearing imitation WHITE WOMEN’S HAIR!!!

    Hellllooooo? Can’t you see how INSANE that is? Are Asian women demanding promotion from white men? How about HIspanic women? Arab? Indian?

    No. They don’t have to because THEIR OWN MEN promote THEIR OWN WOMEN. Granted black women don’t have this luxury because a black patriarchy (which promotes and puts women on a pedestal) doesn’t exist. But therein lies the rub. Because black women don’t have black men promoting them, they have to beg and plead white men to promote them, which obviously isn’t going to happen anytime soon. You can’t negotiate from a position of weakness, especially when black women produce the very thing that white men hate. Black men.

    Is that not a sad position? It’s not black women’s fault that they’re in this position, but it doesn’t change the reality black women face today. They are stuck begging the same group of men who created the mammy, sapphire, and jezebel stereotypes of black women to turn around and promote them as high class, sexy, and beautiful, and along side their own women no less. And how long has this been going on? Centuries. That is the very definition of insanity.

  • http://twitter.com/SoniaSGrant Sonia Grant (@SoniaSGrant)

    #NaomiCampbell did a great job keeping it together and ‘on point’ as @Channel4News tried to go for the cheap shot i.e., ‘angry black woman’.

  • Shanti

    The most I can say is I find your position a little hard to follow and I was simply asking you to expand on your view. On another note I think you might want to reconsider all the unnecessary digs at black women in your comments. It makes your argument easy to miss.

  • Eyes Wide Shut

    @ Perspective

    I am not saying blacks should not open up their own businesses. On the contrary, # 1-5 has already been achieved by blacks by way of Essence/Ebony/Jet/Jones/Arise etc. (black owned makeup companies, black owned ad agencies, modelling agencies and fashion shows, etc. etc.)

    Iman has Iman Cosmetics. Naomi does model recruitment via her show “The Face” which has a diverse mix of models.

    But when it comes to the global stage, you are dealing with the likes of the European/White-American owned conglomerates which control fashion lines like Dolce & Gabbana, Marc Jacobs, Louis Vuitton and countless others. That’s where the big multimillion dollar contracts lie (unfortunate but true).

    What Naomi, Iman, Bethann and Andre are advocating for are more equal representation on the global stage of minorities (not just blacks) when it comes to the fashion giants. In the 60s-90s, when designers controlled their own products, there were many more minorities walking down the runways and snagging the big contracts (Yves Saint Laurent, Versace, Calvin Klein, Dior, Galliano, Gaultier, etc. featured many minority models in their shows and ad campaigns). What has changed? Corporatization. (Is this a real word? But I am sure people get what I am saying…I hope). When I was a teenager, you saw the likes of not only Naomi and Tyra, but countless others (from Pakistan to China to Africa to the Caribbean). But when fashion houses started to get into financial trouble, they sold out to firms like LVMH and PPR (Kering), etc. etc. or they became obsolete.

    I merely stated that there are more that goes on behind the scenes that many may not be aware of when it comes to getting more women of color to walk down the runways. Ad agencies, publication and fashion corporations as well as modelling agencies and Hollywood/celebrities ALL work in collusion together.

    (I know when it comes to countries like India and China, they control all of #s 1-5. This is b/c 99.9% of their population is homogeneous. This is not the case with America. Somewhat true with Europe. Beginning to change in Africa [Africa needs to keep a sharp eye on this with the influx of Asians])

  • stef

    god you have to love the British press and Tabloids , they love trying to instigate to create a story

  • Deal-n-Truth

    When you are in a position of influence, you must use your voice and influence to lift up and empower others. Silence means that people are in agreement to certain situations or apathetic to them.

    She, Iman and Bethann are courageous for what they have been doing for years. We know who’s strong and has a backbone to go to the source and we definitely know who’s weaker because they are afraid to go to the source. Black women are warriors and aren’t afraid to stand up for what they believe in.

  • http://gravatar.com/nubiahbella Nubiahbella

    On a totally random note, people can see how the stereotype of the Angry Black woman is well alive around the world not only in the U.S and how people always try to shut Black folks (especially Black women) when they point out racism .

  • Erica

    Was Susan B. Anthony and other white women “whining” and had the victim mentality when they started the women’s right movement because they was tired of not having the same rights in America as white men?

  • WhatIThink

    Unfortunately too many of these folks are all too happy with just getting paid in the industry and never ever give any thought to building for their own.

    I mean seriously.

  • 9Boots

    @ guest

    Black women are opening up businesses. See the article.

    Submit Nominations For Clutch’s Weekly “She’s So Ambitious” Entrepreneurial Series
    SEPTEMBER 10, 2013 BY YESHA CALLAHAN

    “According to a report by the Center for Women’s Business Research, African-American and Latino women are the fastest growing entrepreneurial segments in the country growing at rates of 133.3% and 191.4% respectively from 1997 to 2007. Combined they represent more than two million of the roughly eight million women-owned businesses in the country and more than $14 billion in gross receipts. Also, African American and Latino women are three to five times more likely to start a business than their white counterpart”

  • Eyes Wide Shut

    @ Perspective

    I am very well aware that Essence/Ebony/Jet have been bought out by the mega corporations like Time Warner et al. BUT WHEN THEY FIRST STARTED, all that I mentioned with regards to #s 1-5 were started and achieved by them prior to the dawn of the 21st century. Just like with the fashion houses/designer businesses mentioned previously, when hard financial times come a knockin’, you either:

    A = sell out to the highest bidder. Your brand and your “vision” will still go on (that’s if your vision is not heavily distorted by the board of directors of the mega corp). You retain some “creative director” title and still hold some shares of the corporation that’s thriving………..

    B = You go bankrupt. Your company becomes obsolete and you just hope and pray for the best with regards to the future.

    Unless you have a backbone of steel and damn near saintly ethics, MOST (99.9%) will go with option A.

    As for your viewpoints with regards to black women advocating for others and lack of black patriarchy – I couldn’t agree more. With regards to Naomi, Iman, Bethann and Andre – I am sure they all have experienced “reverse racism” to some degree “I advocate for blacks only – other races will call me racist”. They shouldn’t care one way or the other. HOWEVER, given the industry that they made a fortune in, they have to walk a thin line (while simultaneously putting the whole fashion world on full blast).

    Given their wealth and power in the fashion industry, yes they should have been able to start their own businesses long time ago. Some did. Grant it, when you are young getting paid millions of dollars to wear fancy clothes and jewelry, civil rights is the furthest thing from your mind.

    Maybe now, finally, times are changing and blacks are finally becoming aware about wealth, economics, and societal power structures after 3-4 decades of being led astray with wasteful spending and frivolous things.

    I wish Naomi, Iman, Bethann, and Andre luck.

    BTW, Naomi did handle that reporter with the utmost class and dignity.

  • pearlsrevealed

    BLACK MATRIARCHY was created by WHITE SUPREMACY but castrating the black male. So why are some of you picking on black women for trying to survive. Don’t blame the victim.

    The idea that we haven’t tried is lie. Before and since slavery we have established our own but have been met with resistance every step of the way. In spite of the instability caused by lynching, rape, false imprisonment, corrupt justice system, unequal education, and burning black owned homes and businesses, etc, there has always been someone who broke through in many industries. The problem has been passing on wealth and keeping the structures established intact for the next generation. That is a complex issue.

    It is never as easy as you think to gain real power. Gordy and Johnson sold Motown and BET because they could not come up with a strategy to overcome the

    Evil is its own genius. White supremacy has been working its agenda since the Roman Empire. Whether you call it the Catholicism, Nazism, Illuminati, KKK, Free Masonary, Democrat, Republican or the Mafia, these power structures are determined to keep themselves on top. The “corporatization” of the arts in the last 20 years is just another part of their detailed diabolical plan.

    Evil never sleep. We must wise up and never give up and create strategies in secret.

  • Naomi Dumbbell

    Really???

    Is Naomi fighting for human rights and dignity or validation? Get a grip..

  • pearlsrevealed

    I hope that when I return tomorrow I don’t find a lot of half finished comments. I type and stuff just disappears.

    “It irony of the whole piece is that patriarchy is said to be so evil, and oppressive to women, but black women keep looking to OTHER PATRIARCHIES, for all the benefits (red carpet treatment) from the very same structure that they claim, whole existence is to “RAPE AND PILLAGE” women.”

    True. I see your disdain for what is a knee jerk reaction to economic genocide. But as you have succinctly stated that patriarchy builds to replicate its own image and the black man is not building an economic foundation for the community. Yes it would be great if our community leaders could gather and create strategy PRIVATELY and then methodically cascade the agenda to the grass roots level. That does not appear to be happening so in the meantime SILENCE IS NOT THE ANSWER.

    The late news anchor David Brinkley is credited with the following quote “A successful man is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks others have thrown at him.”

    So why is the black man collectively not building? Your thesis has not address a solution to the loss of identity and culture that was 500 years in then making. IMO the only way to overcome this is spiritual– a spirituality that is healing and egalitarian. Divine feminism does not fit the bill.

    “Not to mention the fact that black women ALREADY brag and boast about the fact that they have already blown black men out the water in terms of financial success and academic achievement.”

    What? Women usually celebrate their success as an honor for their families and communities. My family subscribed to many of the black periodicals along with popular culture mags like Time in the 70′s and 80′s. I NEVER read an article where a black women celebrated her success by belittling men. Even when it was one of those yearly expose’ on the state of the black community filled with dire statistics, it was the black women who was quoted most with cries of urgency and support for men. Usually the white media choose to highlight women. Our magazines, especially Black Enterprise always spotlighted men. In fact men were the majority of the success stories. Perhaps all you have been exposed to is YouTube’s Sotomayer, Badu-isms, and reality shows.

    In conclusion, If you are a woman then I would ask you to step away from self hatred. Throughout your response I see a desire to hold black women SINGULARLY responsible for the woes of the community. Yes, being a single mother ensure the majority to a life of poverty and government assistance. They did not get pregnant alone. All parties- the oppressors and the oppressed who choose not to actively train the minds to resists the garbage–has a role in this drama.

    Those matriarchal slums that you despise were birth in the 60′ when the Job Corp was instituted under the guise of job training but was used as an instrument to gather young black men and send to the front lines of Vietnam War. The slums really took hold during 70′s when high unemployment forced families to take welfare which stipulated funds be given to female headed households. Unemployed men were forced to run and hide when the social worker came for a visit. Humiliating. This led many to reason ‘Why should I stay if I cant contribute?”

    Lastly, I actually agree with the concepts you chose to define the issues. I would encourage you to write a letter of appeal for a plan of action to the leaders of your community, all the department heads of the nearest HBCU, to youth leaders, to whomever the black power brokers of industry in your community. Just note that you cannot tear down the black women to build the black man are tell them be shut up and sit in the corner. WE ARE ON THE SAME SHIP CALLED ‘DISASTER’. WE NEED EACH OTHER. We desperately need to recapture what was lost through integration and those gained and lost since the 60′s so that men, women and children can thrive with dignity, love, and respect.

  • Joyous

    There is an entire Continent filled with incredibly beautiful Black women. 53 Countries full of Black women. South Africa is the economic engine of the Continent, and has a thriving and booming fashion industry. Black designers, models, make-up artist, hair stylists, etc from all over the Continent are flocking to South Africa to begin or establish careers in fashion. Nigeria and Ghana also have establshed fashion industries. For the life of me, I do not understand why Back people on the Continent and throughout the Diaspora are not linking up to do business with each other on a massive scale. Africans, Black Americans, Caribbeans, Black Brazilians, Black Europeans, etc. I have watched some of the fashion shows on You Tube coming out of different African countries. They are AMAZING. If you want to see full shows of drop dead gorgeous Black models,tune in to those. Inredible fashions that celebrate the beauty of Black women. As Black American women, we especially need to go to the SOURCE to see our beauty. There is true healing in that. Amercan culture is a soul killer, and spirit breaker. That has always been the goal. Someone mentioned the magaine ARISE. That magazine is based out of Nigeria I think. It regulary feaures Black people people as we are globally. I have a copy with Kerry Washington on the cover. Within the pages of that magazine are filled with Black men and women from all over the world. As for African men, that is where I realized just how loved, cared for, desired, and wanted Black women are, as we are. They.Love.Us. As Black American women, we must understand that we have a GLOBAL presence as women of African descent. We have always had that. We will always have that. The U.S. is a hostile, anti-Black girl and woman environment. We have the look of West/Central Africa, and are a reminder of Americas original sin and hypocrisy. Every negative thing that we go through in this country is a reflection of that hostility. Ultimately, the only way out is to literally leave this environment.

  • JRM

    Appeal to the masses would always be the prime focus…..We have a long way to go…..Thank you Naomi!!!!

  • http://gravatar.com/zyasia zyasia

    I love that she put him squarely in his place. How dare he try to paint her as the “angry black woman” because she’s fighting for equality. he tried that…and failed. go Naomi.

  • Kyle

    I don’t even like fashion as an industry, and for quite some time I’ve imagined that Naomi is probably a person I would dislike intensely on a personal level, but I’ve been following this campaign recently. I have a lot of respect for the approach these women are taking, and without even seeing the interview on this webpage, or this analysis of how the interviewer was behaving, all I could think was, “Why is he taking such an obviously racist tack with her?” His push at the end to call her, “angry,” was just way over the line. I came up with at least three different ways in my head on the spot to ask her about past criticism without framing her as the “angry black woman.” And I’m a cisgender white male, in case anyone is wondering. Who is this journalist? What kind of criticisms has HE endured in the past? I’d be curious to know if his work isn’t racist, too.

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