Any way you spin it, black folk was never gonna be cool with reality TV star, NeNe Leakes on the cover of an iconic publication; that for decades has celebrated black power, black beauty, and black pride.
Hell to the no, they holla!
Why Ebony? Why? Is the question that seems to be on the lips of many.
And (as the lyric goes), “It don’t stop!” And it hasn’t. Ebony is still getting backlash for its “Money and Power” issue; which shows Leakes on the cover, holding a glass of champagne, in a tub full of diamonds. The issue hit news stands recently; and you know how anonymity works, people are going to say exactly what’s on their mind. One post from the comments section of Young, Black & Fabulous reads,
“Ebony magazine has lost any credibility that it once had,” while another asks, “Ebony couldn’t get ANYONE else on the cover???”
Then people started getting downright cruel, with one comment calling the 45-year-old new grandmother a “Donkey with Diamonds.”
OK, that wasn’t necessary.
Talk show girlfriend, Wendy Williams, who also has a seat at the table in this issue, came to her aide and defended Ebony’s decision to put Leakes on the cover. She referenced a black idiom and called the criticism,
“Crabs in a barrel.”
And Nene, who is not known for just letting things slide, ain’t going down like that. She defended the magazine’s decision to put her on the cover when she appeared at the recent star-studded gala unveiling Ebony’s Dec/Jan 2013 issue at New York’s Lincoln Center.
“I absolutely deserve to be on the cover,” she tells The Daily Beast. “This cover is about money, power, and respect. And it’s about a come-up story and I’m the one that had that story this year … Not only did I come out as a reality star that was very boisterous and vivacious and outspoken and all those things. I flipped that into money and respect. And a lot of people can’t do that.
Are you lookin’ at the same cover we’re lookin’ at? Where is the word “respect” – we clearly missed it. We see “hustle” – but not “respect.”
Oh, you deserve to be on a cover. It’s the cover of Ebony magazine that people are having a problem with, hon.
But all the talk doesn’t sway this gorl one bit. Nor should it. In fact, she has a few choice words for those raising all this cane.
“…I know you’ve heard it a million times, [African Americans] just don’t support one another,” she says. “But it’s OK for you to go pick up a magazine cover with Kim
Kardashian. She’s my girl. We are cool. We talk. We do drinks and all of that. But her story ain’t no different than mine. You know what I mean? I might’ve worked at the strip club, but she made a sex tape.”
Hmmm, Kim, how do you feel about this example? Drinks anytime soon?
The “Money and Power” issue of Ebony magazine is on stands now.