As a so-called black person living in America, I am so happy that there is a network devoted to us blacks and all of the entertaining and enlightening things we’re capable of doing at super-high levels. I also know that times are tough and these days, we all gotta eat and sometimes the dollars come from places that aren’t the most savory. Still, I’m writing to you about a white man that you roll with who I think negates much of the good works you’ve been able to achieve over the years: Peter Popoff.
Now, in full disclosure, I had the pleasure of producing a show for BET called Being Terry Kennedy some years back. It was a reality series about a professional skateboarder Terry Kennedy. Kennedy had a really hardscrabble upbringing, but he was able to turn his life around and find incredible success inside of his career as an athlete and beyond. BET understands black folk, and was willing to spend money on a show that is right on time with where young black people are today and I APPLAUD BET for making that spend. The show only went one season, but Terry’s clothing line, Fly Society, is doing just fine.
On the reverse of the coin, the fact that Peter Popoff is on BET’s air makes the Kunta Kinte in me get riled up. It makes me want to sharpen my spear. Mr. Popoff pays for his time slots. It’s America, and if you’re a white man with money, your cracker barrel, faux religious bullshit can rock on a black network without much issue. I have just one word for you, BET: SLAVERY. Peter Popoff is enslaving the minds and pocketbooks of many black folks in desperate situations. We’ve seen it all before: preacher man Jim Jones forced nearly 1,000 blacks to sip cyanide-laced Flavoraid in the jungles of Guyana back in ’78. He was a white man who tapped directly into the psyche of black people who wanted to love Jesus and live in a utopian world where money didn’t matter and the color off your skin didn’t matter either.
Today, guys like Popoff don’t want you to sip the punch—they want you to max out your credit cards behind purchasing some “free” miracle spring water. You better go back to Poland Springs with that nonsense, Popoff.
BET, please, let’s look to Lincoln and the year 1865 for inspiration. You’re better off running free ads for FUBU after hours than getting money from a white man who is mentally and economically raping the decedents of slaves.
But what pisses me off the most is his name. What, does he think a name like “Popoff” is going to appeal to the hip-hop set or something? His show needs to pop the hell offa BET immediately, if not soon.
Peter Popoff: POP OFF DEES NUTS.