Women’s Voices: Lost in Translation

By The News Apr 11, 2007

The deluge of commentary on the Imus debacle is dizzying in its volume. Thankfully, Jill Nelson sobers up this frenzy in her follow-up piece on Imus for Women in Media & News: "Black Women: First Dissed, Now Disappeared". Here’s a snapshot:

It’s the same old “race trumps gender” game that we’ve played too long in black America, a spin that surely doesn’t work for those of us who are black, brown and have vaginas. I appreciate the concern for Black women on the part of Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and other Black men, but I’d feel a lot better if they gave up some of the face time and didn’t suck up all the air in the green room. Last night on ABC it was Spike Lee and WVON radio host Roland Martin. Earlier in the day, CNN featured NOW president Kim Gandy, Michael Eric Dyson, and again, Roland Martin. You’d think NOW’s Gandy could’ve suggested a Black woman feminist to address the issue, and it was disturbing that Martin pointed out the issue was sexism more than racism, challenged white feminists to speak up, which they are, but apparently felt no contradiction in speaking for black women. Don’t these people know any feminists of color whom they could suggest might be better suited to speak to the topic than themselves?

So, are Sharpton and Jackson effective? Who do you think should speak out?