All Articles Tagged "Whoopi Goldberg"
“I Love You For What You’ve Done For Black Women” Leslie Jones Expresses Her Love For Whoopi Goldberg
We speak all the time about the importance of representation. The importance of people, particularly children and people of color, seeing others like them in the arts, in political office, in the STEM field, in media…in anything really. The confidence that you can be or become something when there’s someone who looks like you already doing it, has a powerful affect on the psyche.
We see examples of it everyday. But on a recent episode of “The View,” there was a pretty high profile one when Leslie Jones thanked Whoopi Goldberg for her influence.
Jones was absolutely giddy as she talked about the impact Whoopi had on her life.
“I’m going to do this without trying to get emotional. When I was young, my dad always listen to comedy albums and I always knew about comedy. I always loved comedy. The day that I saw Whoopi Goldberg on television I cried so hard because I kept looking at my daddy ‘Oh my God, there’s somebody on tv that looks like me. She looks like me. I can be on tv. I can be on tv. I can do it. Look at her, look at her. She looks just like me.’ My dad recored it for me and I literally watched it everyday after school.”
Then she briefly shared a story of her using one of Whoopi’s schticks in her communication class in college. Then she got more serious.
“I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart because now I know what I’m doing that when I put on that Ghostbusters suit, and little girls see me on tv now, now they’re going to go ‘I can do it.’ And you gave that… you gave that to me. And I love you. I love you from my heart and my soul and I love you for what you’ve done for Black women. I love you for what you’ve done for Black comediennes and I love you.”
I’ve seen this video about four or five times now and I still shed tears when I watch it. Mostly because I know the power of seeing Black women do what you want to do. I know the power of watching someone do something and knowing, on a spiritual, almost supernatural level, that that’s what you want to do as well. And I can understand why she had to thank Whoopi so sincerely. While we may feel we’re living our lives, chasing our dreams and achieving our goals for ourselves, none of us exist in a vacuum. Having the courage and the strength to pursue our goals gives others the power, inspiration and, in some cases, the permission to do the same.
Instead of getting paid, sick leave for your menstrual cramps, how about you just get a little herb to help take care of that? We’ve mentioned the use of marijuana to treat cramps before. But now, there’s a celebrity name attached to it: Whoopi Goldberg.
Whoopi has been very vocal about her support of the legalization of marijuana and now she, like Snoop Dogg and Bob Marley’s family, is attempting to make some money from its accessibility in California.
She told USA TODAY, “I want to go nice and slow with this. I don’t want this to be a joke to people. It’s not a joke to women.”
The company, named “Whoopi and Maya,” after her co-founder Maya Elisabeth, will initially offer four products: a balm, a tincture, sipping chocolate and a bath soak. All of the products are infused with marijuana and will attempt to reduce the pain of cramps and periods. Price points for the products have not been set yet.
Unfortunately, for most of us, the products will only be available in California, for those who have medical marijuana cards. They’ll be on shelves within the next few weeks as well as dispensaries throughout the state. Until marijuana is legalized in other states, the products will be limited to California.
Elisabeth said that she and Whoopi’s products will be successful as it appeals to 50 percent of the population. Elisabeth also said that women have been herbal healers for generations and believes that their line of products follow in that tradition.
According to USA TODAY, because the federal government has largely restricted research about the medical benefits of marijuana, there is little scientific data about the benefits of the plant.
Whoopi herself said that smoking or drinking marijuana-infused tea helped control her cramps and pain. Currently, she uses a “vape” pen, filled with marijuana oil to treat her glaucoma headaches. The mission of marijuana is important to Whoopi. She said she’s not interested in selling cannabis to people who simply want to get high. At 60-years-old, she said she’s willing to potentially violate federal law because she believes so strongly in the company’s goal.
She said, “This is a nice quiet way that I can be a part of this. It had to help people if I were going to be involved.”
Whoopi Goldberg’s Black-behind got on television and said, “I’m not African-American no mo’. I’m delivert!”
Actually what really happened was (and as reported by Vibe magazine):
“During a discussion on immigration, comedian and co-host Joy Behar joked many would flee the country if Republican frontrunner Donald Trump were elected president. Goldberg didn’t seem to think the comment was funny, and quickly scoffed at the idea.
“You know what uh uh! This is my country,” the Academy-Award winner said. “My mother, my grandmother, my great grand folks, we busted ass to be here. I’m sorry. I’m an American. I’m not an African American, I’m not a chick American, I’m an American!”
So making public declarations of one’s nationality is really becoming a thing, huh? Or maybe it has always been a thing?
All I know is that every few months a notable “Black” person feels the need to get in the media and tell the world that they refuse to identify themselves as anything but American.
Cool. Identify as you wish. I don’t care if tomorrow Whoopi, Raven, and the rest of the non-Black Black folks decide that they want to identify as unicorns.
But I have to say that personally, I don’t get it.
Okay, that’s not true: I kind of get what of get where she’s coming from.
Last year, I spent some time in South Africa. Not very long – just three months. And I can honestly say that the biggest and most valuable lesson I learned during my second trip on the continent was that I am indeed an American.
Nothing better illustrates this epitome better than the day I went to the Pick ‘n Pay in Cape Town. I was standing in the produce section, holding a bag of sweet potatoes while trying to convert the Rand price into US dollars in my head, when I heard something familiar coming from behind me.
That’s what I heard. I heard a woman say “Suga.”
Suga: the in the affectionate term used by Black aunties, grannies and old ladies at the DMV all across America. In this case, it was a Black woman using it on an awkwardly amused produce manager she had just thanked for fetching her a decent bag of tomatoes.
My heart started racing and my palms began to sweat. I could barely contain my joy as I pointed across the produce racks at her and yelled, “African-American!”
She turned her head, smiled and pointed right back at me before also yelling, “African-American!”
I had never met this woman before in my life, but that day we embraced and caught up like we were old friends.
We talked about President Obama and the crazy Republicans. We talked about Tyler Perry and the state of Black Hollywood. We talked about her native Chicago and my native Philadelphia. She asked me if the soul food restaurant Ms Tootsie’s was still there. My face beamed with delight as I told her that it is still present and accounted for. Our conversation was peppered with all the colloquialisms, euphemisms and idioms you would expect to be associated with African American Vernacular English.
We chatted some more about home before continuing on our paths down separate aisles in the supermarket. But before we departed, she told me that if I ever needed to talk to someone, to give her a call.
It’s hard to fully explain how thankful I was for the invite. It’s likely a feeling that can only be appreciated by first generation continental Africans in America today. It wasn’t that I didn’t like South Africa. But after a couple of months being around native South Africans – both Black, White and Indian – I was lonely. And I often felt like I didn’t fit in.
It is true we Diaspora Black folks looked similar and likely shared some of the same genetic markers. And it is true that we African-Americans have gotten some our game directly from the continent. It’s also true that African American influences, particularly in Hip Hop and Black cinema (Lord knows, Black South Africans adore Tyler Perry) can be seen everywhere across the country, particular among Black South African youth.
But there is no denying our differences.
And it is not just the difference in language, religion and how we name ourselves. But I am talking about having local South Africans miss the joke because they don’t understand my very American cultural reference. And I’m talking about not being able to find a single piece of sweet potato pie or bowl of black eyed pea stew in the country to quell your homesick palette. And I’m talking about having to explain why it is not appropriate to make fun of or generalize the way Black Americans talk and our mannerisms (based off what they see in the media) to other Black people who come off just as clueless as White Americans. And I’m talking about not getting the hype over a soccer game on television when a basketball game was on another channel. And I’m also talking about the difficulty in understanding how two people of Diaspora who had similar histories with White folks, tended to relate to race and racism so differently.
At that moment, I had my American wake up call. And no matter how awful my homeland has treated me and my ancestors, there was denying who I was. And honestly, nor should I feel the need to deny it. African-Americans have made great strides in this country and our influence can be felt the world over. That’s not bad for a people who represent less than 15 percent of the population.
Not that I wasn’t conscious before, but in South Africa is where I learned in the most validating ways to be proud of who we are as a people. So in that respect, I totally get where Goldberg is coming from. But still…
Also while in South Africa, I met about a dozen or so American Whites who were also traveling across the country. Sure, they had external hard drives full of Hip-Hop and R&B playlists and understood my cultural references. And sure, one of those White Americans were from the South, which meant he too could appreciate a good piece of fried chicken and cornbread. But guess how many of them embraced me as a sister of the Red, White and Blue?
Two. And both of those fellow Americans happened to be half-Jews. The rest of them preferred to intermingle with the White Dutch, the White British, the White Germans, the White Swedes and the Afrikkan who regarded me no better or worse than my continental African distant counterparts.
In fact, the one time we had actually sat down together for a meaningful conversation was during the Baltimore riots. We just so happened to be seated around the television in the communal room of a local backpacker watching everything play out live on television. I had expressed my anger at how my homeland has continuously denied our people not only equal respect under the laws, but our humanity. In response, one of my White American counterparts said, “sure racism is bad. But Blacks need to deal with their own stuff in their communities first before they…”
And that’s when I was like, “yeah I’m American and you’re American but we ain’t the same kind of American. Your kind of American values the oppression of Black people. My kind of American wants us to get free.”
Needless to say there wasn’t much kinship after that.
In short, that is why I call myself an African-American. It’s an identifier that not only speaks to my nationality but acknowledges the unique and complicated history – and current relationship – we people have with our nation because of who our ancestors were and where they had originated.
And while we may not know which tribe we came from in Africa or may have developed a fondness for apple pies and baseball, there is no denying that African-American is a tribe onto our own.
And we should be proud of that.
When the footage of Bill Cosby being arrested last week, aired, my mom looked at the tv screen and said she felt sorry for him. Now, my mom is not one who believes that all of these rape and drugging allegations are a conspiracy to keep Bill Cosby from buying NBC (which is really so outlandish when you think about it. Comcast bought NBC for 6.5 billion, with a B, dollars.) The point is, she believes he did it.
Still, she felt a way seeing a feeble and legally blind Bill Cosby being led into the court room by his legal team, stumbling along the way. At first glance, it does appear to be a sad sight. But when you consider the women, more than 50 of them, it looks something like the beginnings of justice, even if it’s coming much later than it should have.
The only thing I regret is the fact that it didn’t happen sooner.
Whoopi Goldberg seems to share that sentiment.
Yesterday, on “The View,” during the Hot Topics segment, the women were discussing Cosby’s arrest, arraignment and upcoming preliminary hearing for an alleged sexual assault in 2004 against Andrea Constand.
Goldberg said, “I’m glad it’s happening. Because I sort of feel like whenever you have people saying, ‘This is what happened. This is what happened. This is what happened.’ I want the court…I want to hear it. I want everybody to be able to ask the questions. Because we’ve heard a lot but we have not heard anything from his side.”
His tv granddaughter, Raven Symoné said that “there’s action being done” and she’d watch his trial if televised.
The panel also featured legal analyst Sunny Hostin who said the media would have to make a motion for cameras to be allowed in the courtroom and then a judge would grant or deny the request.
She did say “I think people want to see it.”
Personally, I’m with Whoopi. I want to see what Cosby has to say for himself. Though I didn’t always feel this way. When the allegations first came out, though I believed the women, for some inexplicable reason, I felt a way about the media asking Bill Cosby, straight out to his face, whether or not he was a rapist.
Now, I realize this is exactly what he needs. To be held publicly accountable for his actions. Particularly when he’s spent so much of his career publicly positioning himself as morally superior.
Whatever happens, a decision will have to be made soon as a preliminary hearing in the case is set to take place on January 14.
Interestingly enough, in another case, involving seven women who claim Bill Cosby sexually abused them and are suing him for defamation of character, his wife Camille Cosby, who has stood by her husband’s side, saying more about the allegations than he himself has, has been ordered to testify this Wednesday.
Her attorneys filed an emergency motion to stay or delay her deposition, claiming that she would be forced to share intimate details of their married life, including her husband’s sexual proclivities. Her lawyers argued that Mrs. Cosby having to testify, as the comedian’s wife and business manager, would present “undue burden” and “would not spare their client embarrassment.”
The whole thing is laughable really.
Camille was the same woman who released a written statement saying that her husband had consensual sex with 50 women during the course of their marriage. I guess that wasn’t embarrassing or invasive or revealing of his sexual proclivities.
The only difference now is that she can’t lie under oath, without facing the penalty of perjury.
If she knew and thereby enabled her husband’s actions over the decades, she needs to speak up for herself publicly too.
But if the trial is indeed televised, Camille won’t be the one on camera. It’ll be Bill himself. And he’s the one who needs to provide the answers.
What do you think, should the trial be televised?
You can watch what the women of “The View” had to say about it in the video below.
About a month ago, Nene Leakes visited the women of “The View” to discuss her upcoming role in the Broadway play Chicago. While she was there, she also felt like the women clowned her for not having any furniture in her house. In all actuality, they simply asked why it was missing. Anyway, Nene was upset and said that the women were behaving like mean girls. She spoke and tweeted about it o more than one occasion.
Anyway, during Whoopi’s recent appearance on “Watch What Happens Live,” a caller finally asked what happened and whether or not she understood Nene’s gripes.
Here’s how it all played out.
Caller: Why do you think Nene had such a bad time on “The View”? Do you think the other ladies were acting like mean girls?
Andy: Did you hear that?
Whoopi: No, no! You know what, I didn’t. Really, Nene?! Did somebody say something she didn’t like?
Andy: She felt like Raven was giving her the stink eye and with Joy…she was not feeling Joy.
Whoopi: You know what then come back another day and try again. I don’t know what to say.
You can watch the full discussion, complete with Whoopi’s visible annoyance, in the video below.
It was only a matter of time that Nicki Minaj impressive career trajectory from on-the-rise Queens, New York rapper to global cross over sensation.
Back in September, Deadline reported that the superstar would be bringing her vivid lyrics of her life to homes nationwide by executive producing and appearing in a scripted comedy series for ABC Family based on her own life. Titled Nicki, the series would narrate Nicki’s rise to stardom, including her immigrant family, life as a LaGuardia High School student, personal growth, and much more.
I am honored and excited to announce that I’ve literally hand picked the main characters of my scripted series “Nicki” ~ #ABCFamily #Freeform ~ I’ve been going to the auditions falling in love with some incredible people. Looking forward to unveiling this groundbreaking new show for you guys in 2016! 😘😘😘😘❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️
Now, the cast of Nicki has been unveiled, which features some very big names. Whoopi Goldberg has been cast as Nicki’s neighbor; Selita Ebanks will take on the role of her mother Grace; Wesley Johnson will act as Vincent, her father; and Ariana Neala, who we’ve seen in Fruitvale Station and Get Hard, will play a young Onika.
“I am honored and excited to announce that I’ve literally hand picked the main characters of my scripted series ‘Nicki,'” she posted on Instagram.”I’ve been going to the auditions falling in love with some incredible people. Looking forward to unveiling this groundbreaking new show for you guys in 2016!”
I literally cried watching her taped audition. I demanded to meet her! Sat in a room with her teaching her how to rap by doing a beat on the table & forcing her to stay on beat! Lol. Then pulled out all the attitude she had in her lil body. Haha! She’s tough! And so sweet & cute. #ArianaNeal #LilNicki Welcome to the family lil lady bug! 😘😘😘😘😘😘😘 #ABCFamily #Freeform #Nicki
A photo posted by Nicki Minaj (@nickiminaj) on
Nicki also gushed over young starlet Ariana saying, “I demanded to meet her!” after watching her audition tape that left Nicki in tears. “[I] Sat in a room with her teaching her how to rap by doing a beat on the table & forcing her to stay on beat! Lol. Then pulled out all the attitude she had in her lil body. Haha! She’s tough! And so sweet & cute.”
There’s not an exact debut date set for Nicki, but you can expect it sometime in 2016. Will you be watching?
If there was ever an example of a person who can dish it but can’t take it, it’s Nene Leakes. Homegirl is sensitive. Today, she appeared on “The View” to discuss her new role in the Broadway play Chicago. But you can’t have Nene in the place without discussing “Real Housewives of Atlanta.”
Reality Tea reported that Nene said she might appear on the show from time to time because it was a great career move for her. And in true Real Housewives fashion, she flaunted a bit of her fortune by showing the ladies and the audience pictures of her new house.
But there was something missing…furniture.
And never ones to hold their tongues, Whoopi and then Joy Behar were quick to call her out on it.
Whoopi: But where is the furniture Nene? You’re there but where is the furniture?
Nene: They told me to…I didn’t want to show pictures of my furniture so we gave pictures to you guys when we first bought the house.
Joy: Why can’t we see the furniture?
Nene: Because honey, we have to have security measures. Rolls eyes
Joy: But you’re showing the house…
Nene: I showed the outside and I’m behind many gates, with security.
Joy: How would the furniture?..oh…well.. Waves hands.
You could tell it was a bit of a nice-nasty interaction. But in case there was any confusion about how Nene felt about the whole thing, she took to Twitter to explain.
“Just sat with a bunch of mean girls turning up their noses, looking u up & down as if u don’t belong! The HATE was so real & SAD”
Nene certainly has a personality for the stage with all of those dramatics. The tweet has since been deleted.
I like Nene, but let’s be real. When you’re showing pictures of your house on national television, you’re really not concerned about security measures, honey. People don’t have to see what you have inside of your house in order to want to break into it. It’s all quite comical, considering we were all up in through Nene and Greg’s house when they were on the show for all those years. Stop the games.
And if it were someone sitting in her position, trying to push that explanation, Leakes would have asked the same question. If memory serves, she’s had plenty to say about Chateau Sheree…or lack thereof. It’s literally the same thing, just varying degrees.
Just because someone doesn’t agree with you or some of your actions, it doesn’t make them mean.
What do you think about Nene’s appearance on “The View”? Do you think the women were mean to her or did they ask legitimate questions?
You can watch the tense interaction in the video on the next page.
I hate to say it, but it took us living through the daytime talk show Hell that is Raven-Symoné and Whoopi Goldberg for us to really appreciate Star Jones.
Actually, I don’t hate to say it because truthfully, Star Jones wasn’t even that bad.
Okay, like many of you, there were times when I found Jones a bit annoying. I admit that her constant name dropping and credential-waving, as well as her constant bragging about her lavish lifestyle, got on my last nerves too. And yes, at times she came off as a bit too opportunistic and self-absorbed. Especially the way that she shamelessly sold parts of her nuptials to the highest bidder. Although I don’t think there is anything wrong with taking the most advantage of systems that are definitely, and unequivocally, taking advantage of you, something about it all was pretty tacky.
But (and I could be wrong here) I don’t recall a single moment during her tenure on “The View,” where she acted both maliciously and antagonistically towards folks, particularly Black people. And in an era of the show where we got Symoné the wildly-colored Toucan bragging about discriminating against other Blacks, and Whoopi up there looking like an old-timey self-hating Negro in general, that sort of race consciousness means a whole heck of a lot.
And while I don’t want to go too far down the conspiracy theory rabbit hole here, I do wonder about what was really behind Jones’ abrupt departure from the long-running talk show? Was it really about her slipping ratings or the fact that Jones wasn’t about to shade Black people for the entertainment of White folks?
If I had to go by the receptors on my tin foil hat, I would say it was the latter.
Think about it: “The View” has been on some politically regressive mess for some time now. Long gone are the days when the very smart Meredith Vieira, the very witty Joy Behar and the very accomplished Jones banded together to tell the very dim-witted Debbie Matenopoulos to permanently sit down and read a book (she was ultimately replaced by the very brilliant Lisa Ling).
Back then it was made clear that “The View” would be a show for smart women and that its format would center around news as much as it would about gossip. But with each new drop in the ratings (because at the end of the day, folks don’t like listening to smart women) came a departure. First Ling. Then Jones and Behar. And in order to keep the show afloat, the producers decided to shift focus from news items to round-table debates about “hot topics.”
Then we started seeing things like Barbara Walters who is the show’s matriarch, giving a rabid defense of Woody Allen against long-standing charges of sexual abuse against minors. And Sherri Shepherd sitting in confusion over if the world is round or flat. And most of the ridiculous things, which have come out of Elisabeth Hasselbeck’s mouth.
In short, these women sounded dumb. I don’t know for sure which demographics the producers of the show were looking to attract after a while, but if I had to guess, it would be the real housewives of White supremacy. Basically, any woman who did not seek to challenge the White supremacist capitalistic patriarchy power structure.
And that is likely why Jones had to go.
As much as folks dislike her personally, what we disliked Jones for had little do with her political opinions. In fact, when it came to discussions around race and even class, Jones was pretty left of center. And in a culture that only wants to remember her as the host who lied about her weight loss and talked too much about herself and her wedding (a narrative put out there by the show’s matriarch), Jones does not get a lot of credit for the ways in which she acted righteously.
This is not to say that Jones was always right. How could we forget the moment when she trashed Anderson Cooper’s coming out moment as an attempt to grab ratings. But Jones understood how racism worked in America and she wasn’t about to apologize nor make excuses for it.
God, I miss those days…
Whoopi Goldberg was recently interviewed by BET.com and was asked about Viola Davis’ astounding Emmy speech which moved many of us — except Nancy Grahn, of course, and seemingly Whoopi.
In her speech, Davis proclaimed, “The only thing that separates women of color from anybody else is opportunity,” a fact many women of color in the entertainment and other industries know to be true.
However, Auntie Whoopi strongly disagreed with Davis’ statement on Hollywood’s inequities. She told BET Reporter Chantal Potter:
“I’m not sure what that [Viola’s statement] means; Opportunity to do what? You know what I mean. The truth of the matter is, there have been plenty of opportunities. Look at Scandal! Kerry Washington is there and she’s working her booty off. But they [the Emmy board] didn’t vote for her. So maybe the question is, “What do you have to do, to get voted on?” Not that the opportunity is not there. We’ve had lots of opportunities. See now there will be more parts, more dramas because Viola won an Emmy award. The truth is everyone wants an Emmy, the studios, everyone! So they’ll hire more Black women.”
Whoopi’s confusing statement means the same thing Davis referenced in her speech. Women of color are marginalized from receiving roles or awards and the opportunities are only offered when another colleague of color earns the said accolades first. This method is unacceptable and not known to be used when casting actresses who are White.
Whoopi and her co-host Raven-Symoné must have some special insight when it comes to hiring people of color that we don’t know about. What do you think?
Check out the full interview below.
Whoopi doesn’t cosign Viola’s Emmy Speech: “The Truth of the Matter is, there’s been Plenty of Opportunity…” https://t.co/RzRbp8OCAk
— BET (@BET) October 8, 2015
As a child of the ’90’s, Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit, was on the required viewing list. We knew the plot, the songs and chuckled at all the nuns with the huge personalities. Many of us love that movie and know it like the back of our hands. And while that might be the case, there are some behind the scenes details that we never learned. Well, all of that is about to change today.