White Lies: Sinéad O’Connor And All The White People Who’ve Lied On Black Folk

February 24, 2017  |  
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I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again the “Blame The Black Guy” game is as American as apple pie. And one day, when I have a bit more time and a whole lot more money I’m going to launch an in-depth, investigative report, complete with psychologists, historians and victims, on the reasons why White folk, particularly White women, have used Black folk, particularly Black men, as their scapegoats.

The subject of White lies is not something I spend my days and nights thinking or obsessing about. But every couple of months or so, it comes smashing to the forefront of my mind when another White person is caught in a lie, usually a particularly egregious, life or career-altering or threatening one. Today’s featured liar is musician Sinéad O’ Connor.

Image Source: WENN

Sinéad O’ Connor

Generally, when I see Sinéad O’ Connor’s name anywhere, I keep scrolling. I get the sense that a lot of things she says and does are an attempt to garner more attention and people like that generally annoy me. But today, I saw that her picture was next to Arsenio Hall’s so I wondered what that was about. They’re certainly not a pair you see together everyday. Turns out, in May, O’ Connor went to her Facebook page to write:

“Two words for the DEA investigating where Prince got his drugs.?.?. Arsenio Hall (a.k.a. Prince’s and Eddie Murphy’s bitch). Anyone imagining Prince was not a longtime hard drug user is living in cloud cuckoo land. Arsenio I’ve reported you.”

Hall sued O’Connor for the remarks that same month. She called the lawsuit amusing before expounding:

“I’m also very happy to notice that the DEA have taken me seriously enough to be thoroughly questioning all of Prince’s friends and aides from the last thirty years as to his KNOWN history of hard drug use and where he obtained his drugs. I do not like drugs killing musicians. And I do not like Arsenio Hall.”

But yesterday, O’Connor apologized for the accusations, telling TMZ that they were false.

“I apologize for my Facebook posts about Arsenio Hall to the extent that anyone thought I was accusing him of acting as Prince’s drug dealer and supplying him with illegal hard drugs, or insinuating that Arsenio had something to do with Prince’s death…I sincerely apologize because those statements would be false and I retract them unequivocally.”

Why though Sinéad? Was the thirst so strong that you had to use Prince’s death to get some shine?

Carolyn Bryant

Just last month we wrote about something we all knew to be true a long time ago. That the woman who said Emmett Till whistled and made advances toward her, had completely lied about the story. Not only did her lies result in his torture and death, it worked to exonerate the two men who eventually admitted to killing the young teenager.

Leah McSweeney and Michael Che

Another story we shared here. This one was about dating. When “Saturday Night Live” comedian Michael Che wasn’t exactly feeling Leah McSweeney, she went on a crusade against him, calling him all types of jerks and a$$holes and making up an entire story about the way he mistreated her. But Michael had the receipts to prove that he just wasn’t feeling her and was actually extremely polite with this curve.

"Lena Dunham pf"

Lena Dunham

Lena Dunham stepped into the mind of football player Odell Beckham Jr. to see exactly what he thought about her– and those thoughts were that he didn’t want to f*ck her. This one is not so much a lie as it is complete fantasy and utterly unfair to project that hypersexual attitude onto a [Black] man she doesn’t know.

Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift spent years playing victim to Kanye West. She made a whole speech at an award show about people trying to take credit for your success, a direct reference to Kanye’s line, “I made that b*tch famous.” And people were feeling sorry for her too until Kim Kardashian released tapes showing that Taylor agreed to Kanye saying it. When that bit leaked, Taylor flipped the switch saying that she didn’t like being called a b*tch.

Susan Smith

Susan Smith had two young sons. One three years old and another 14 months. She claimed one day that a Black man stole her car and drove it away with the boys still inside. In reality, Susan drove the car into a river.

Amanda Knox

Italy is not exactly known for its Black population but that didn’t stop her from blaming the murder of her roommate on a Congolese bar owner Patrick Lumumba. Lumumba spent two weeks in jail before police realized that Amanda was lying. She served three years in prison before she was eventually sent home. But Lumumba lost his bar and has struggled to find work since the false murder allegation.

Bethany Storro

Bethany Storro said she suffered from body dysmorphia, so much so that she wanted to melt her face away. And that’s exactly what she did. When she could no longer tolerate the burning acid, she ran screaming outside. Someone, assuming that no one would do this to themselves, asked Bethany “Did someone do this to you?” She said yes and that’s where the lie about a Black woman who attacked her. Storro issued a specific apology to the African American community after a full police investigation had been launched.


Ashley Todd

During President Obama’s 2008 campaign to become president, Ashley Todd took it upon herself to help out his opponent, John McCain,  by alleging that a Black man robbed her, beat her and scratched the letter B for “Barack” onto her face. All lies. Too bad they didn’t learn this until McCain and Sarah Palin reached out to her offering their condolences.

The White Woman in Rosewood

If you thought this was just a fictional story, starring Ving Rhames, it’s not. At least six Blacks and two Whites were killed in Rosewood, Florida before the town was eventually abandoned and destroyed. And all of it began with unproven accusations that a White woman in the nearby town of Sumner had been beaten and possibly raped. Survivors of what is now called a massacre hid in swamps until they could evacuate to larger towns. None of the Black residents ever returned to Rosewood.


Veronica Wells is the culture editor at MadameNoire.com. She is also the author of “Bettah Days.” You can follow her on Facebook and Twitter @VDubShrug.

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