Arsenio Hall Opens Up To Oprah About Being Called An ‘Uncle Tom’ By Spike Lee

October 21, 2013  |  

During his recent appearance on Oprah’s Next Chapter, late night TV host and actor Arsenio Hall opened up about his interesting struggle with racial acceptance. He also revealed that part of his reason for leaving The Arsenio Hall Show years ago was due to the frustration that he felt over constantly being criticized.

“You leave it and say goodnight. It’s all consuming. I was sending people to check on my mom. I’m like, “you’re making money and you’re not able to enjoy it.” There is a point when you say, ‘I can’t please anybody’….Spike Lee’s saying I’m an Uncle Tom and White people are saying I’m ‘too Black.’ Who am I doing this for? You say, I’m just tired of not being able to please anyone,” he confessed.

He also cleared up the common misconception that his infamous interview with Louis Farakhan was the reason for his show being taken off of the air.

“When the Farrakhan interview happened, my resignation had flown long before. Usually when you resign, they let you go that day. They want you gone. I had such a great relationship with them that they said, ‘Okay, stay a few months…and we’re gonna figure this out.’”

The 57-year-old full-time dad and Oprah also reminisced about a disagreement they had years ago over a joke that he made about Stedman.
“I did something when you brought the meat out of the wagon. Best and worse day of my life. First of all, I’m like Oprah can get any number she wants. You schooled me in a very classy way. I knew you were serious, but you didn’t scream. You said, by the way,  I’m canceling your show. And I will come one day–just not now.”

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