You Ain’t Gots To Lie: FOX Claims Oprah’s “Pushing Racism” With Swiss Bag Drama To Promote “The Butler”

August 14, 2013  |  


If there’s one thing I know about FOX News from trying to avoid the channel at the gym, it’s that hosts of the different programs love to reach. And that’s what happened when Republican strategist Dee Dee Benkie tried to insinuate that Oprah Winfrey might have opened up about the unfair treatment she received at that Zurich boutique in an attempt to get people to see her movie, The Butler. This discussion was brought up on the program America Live.

According to Variety and Mediate, host Martha MacCallum, Benkie, and Fox analyst Jehmu Greene were having a discussion about that $30,000+ bag and the treatment Oprah received when she wanted to see it on the show, and both Benkie and MacCallum claimed that Lady O had overreacted in assuming her treatment was based on her race, when they (both white women) probably wouldn’t have been able to see the bag either. They went on to say that the associate’s behavior was “rude” rather than racist, and Benkie tried to ask the question of whether or not Oprah was sharing this story and classifying it as racism to get people to see her new film (which comes out Friday!):

“Maybe Oprah Winfrey was miffed because she didn’t know who she was. And here’s the other thing: you know Oprah’s got a movie out about the butler. It would be really terrible if she was using this story to promote the movie. I’m not saying that. But I gotta say, it’s not fair to call anyone a racist whenever there’s no proof of it. There’s absolutely zero proof. Rude, yes. Racist, no.”

MacCallum agreed and said that by claiming the incident is racist, it perpetuates an idea that racism is still a major problem…you know, even though it obviously is. That young privilege can keep you blind, ya’ll:

“When we call something like this racist, it perpetuates this discussion, it makes people think, ‘People are still racist. It happens all the time, it happens all the time’ and that’s damaging.”

Fox analyst Jehmu Greene, who is black, tried to explain that yes, this is something that happens all the time, but to appease her cohorts, tried to fall back on her use of the R-word:

“We have to come to grips in this country that we have unconscious bias. We, in our hearts, want to be as equal as possible, but because of the way our brains process all of the messages that come to us through our visual culture—this how our bodies work, this is how our brains categorize things.

Maybe this clerk wasn’t racist but there is a bigger issue in this country…When I walk into a store and go buy hair for a weave, yes, I am treated differently.”

But by the head shaking, constant interrupting and side-eyeing, it seems Benkie and MacCallum didn’t agree. One person’s experience certainly isn’t another’s…

Oprah has since apologized, NOT because the story wasn’t true, but because it got blown up media-wise to a point where the country felt the need to send out an apology for her treatment. She even did this on the red carpet of one of the premiere’s of The Butler, so to claim she came out with this story (especially when she was trying to keep people’s names out of it) to get sympathy so that someone would see her movie, now that’s damaging, honey.

What do you think? Could this have been for publicity? Or was Benkie wrong to even insinuate such a thing?

Trending on MadameNoire

View Comments
Comment Disclaimer: Comments that contain profane or derogatory language, video links or exceed 200 words will require approval by a moderator before appearing in the comment section. XOXO-MN
  • Farrah

    Ironically, by running this story, Fox News did the opposite of what they intended – provide publicity for The Butler movie. They are so blinded by racism in trying to prove they aren’t racist, they can’t see the forest for the trees.

  • Farrah

    Ironically, by running this story, Fox News did the opposite of what they intended – provide publicity for The Butler movie. They are so blinded by racism in trying to prove they aren’t racist, they can’t see the forest for the trees.

  • rainydaze80

    Oprah mentioned the incident because she was asked by a reporter about her experience with racism and the n-word. Oprah recounted her most recent incident where somebody judge her because of her looks. Let’s not forget, Oprah said she was glammed up at the time. I don’t expect a couple of white ladies to understand this because they have never walked into a store and had assumptions made about what they can and cannot afford because of the color of their skin. What these ladies don’t seem to understand is that part of the black experience includes people making assumptions (usually negative) about you whenever you walk into a room. There’s always this tension and feeling that says ‘you don’t belong here.’ As long as you are dressed appropriately and carry yourself well, what else could the problem be? What else could be creating that tension? White folks get mad whenever somebody points out that these racist assumptions still exist, since they keep trying to convince us that we live in a post-racial society.

  • Tony Williams

    fake news again.

  • Carla

    that was racist…she assumed Oprah couldn’t afford he purse just because she was black..even though Oprah said she purposely dressed to impress to avoid mishaps like that. Besides, if Oprah was miffed that the clerk didn’t know who she was…she could have easily remedied that by throwing her name and money around while in the presence of the clerk…Instead she left without even letting the clerk know who she was. It’s not the first time this has happened to Oprah and I highly doubt Oprah has to make up things to pump up her film…she has tons of fans( of which I am not one…she’s okay but I have issues with some of the things she does but that is neither here nor there) black people almost always support black movies because there are so few out there. I doubt the fact that she was snubbed in a store will cause flocks of people to go see The Butler. Fox needs to try again!

  • Joe Whitman

    “Multiculturalism” is a program that is FORCED upon EVERY & ONLY White countries.
    “Multiculturalism” is a program to turn EVERY White country into a non-White country.
    This IS geNOcide. WHITE geNOcide.
    If you are White, and you object to your own geNOcide, you are called a RACIST!
    Well guess what, my people, White people, are catching on very quickly to the following two things:
    1 – Multiculturalism is a code for White geNOcide.
    2 – Anti-racist is a code for anti-White.

  • NatashaDecemberBabyThomas

    Who cares what Faux News think, they always talking out of their butts, no shock here.

  • TylerUrbane

    Because anti-racism is just a codeword for anti-white.
    “Racist” a hate word used to Genocide whites with mass immigration and “assimilation”.
    All white countries and Only white countries.

  • kierah

    Oprah didn’t name the store or the rude saleslady. They piped up and helped fan the flames in their zeal to distance themselves from the “racism” tag. Oprah told a small anecdote and the rest of the world got up in arms.

  • Marie Bano

    Why quote anyone from racist Fox-please stop.