Atheist Life Hacks: How Disliking Oprah Makes You A Privileged White Racist

The other day, I posted this tweet (if bad words make you cry, click back now):

and it was promptly met with a DM from a Twitter user who I will keep anonymous, telling me that it was wrong of me to criticize her in such a way because she was an important symbol of empowerment to the black community. To break it down for you, I was being asked to reconsider my position on Oprah based solely on the colour of her skin.

Let’s rewind a few years…

There used to be something endearing about Oprah. She was a new, up and coming special interest journalist who seemed ambitious and innocent and fearless up against the old, white gods of talk shows like Donahue. It was cool to see a black woman raised in poverty rise beyond the silver-haired and silver-spooned dinosaurs in the industry. I wanted to cheer for her. I wanted to be her fan. She seemed fallible. She seemed human. She was relatable.

Somewhere along the line, though, amidst the grieving moms sobbing on her stage, the bald and infirm struggling with terminal illness being broadcast to millions, and the surreal interviews with celebrity nutbars like Tom Cruise, Oprah lost me and she lost me good. I remember once at the dinner table with my dad, we were hunched over our spaghetti,

“I saw a lady with multiple personalities on Oprah, today.” I told my dad.

“Oh, the ringmaster¬†is still parading the mentally ill around on her freak show, huh?”

I can honestly say I’d never thought about it that way, but it matched how I felt. There was something inside of me that became unsettled every time I watched her. I felt like a predatory voyeur witnessing¬†her constant stream of people suffering, people grieving and people whose private lives would never be private again. There was the woman who was disfigured after being shot by her husband; the children of the man who had 34 of them put on stage for our entertainment; the actress friend of Oprah who had been molested by her brother blind-sided when she saw him and her parents appear on Oprah’s show. She even exploited her friends… Sometimes, it was¬†too painful to see, like witnessing a large, muscular man beat a puppy. It hurt me to my core to watch Oprah¬†exploit those suffering in pain and in loss.

Oprah is a tit storm.

I was still subject to her bullshit often, though, as my mom loved to watch her, and all my aunts and my grandmother. I’d hear Oprah’s testicular voice boom from my living room about free shit under everyone’s chairs, and a chorus of high-pitched screams would bounce around in my head forcing me to swear under my breath. At lunch, I’d overhear Oprah talk about bullshit like chakras and “aha moments” and positive thinking and it’d take everything in my power not to walk out to the garage, grab a sledgehammer and send my set to television heaven.

It went far beyond no longer liking the lady. It got to the point where I loathed her; where my skin would crawl at the sound of her voice. I’d catch a glimpse of a crying child on her stage and want to fly to Chicago myself just to¬†heckle her from the audience. It became the running joke among my friends and I that Oprah was my nemesis, because one mention of her name and I’d go right off. I would spend hours writing my best friend in prison, entertaining him with such ramblings as,

oprah is a whole new experience on mute. i mean, you can’t hear any of the little idiocies she’s likely spewing, but you just know she is and it’s irritating because even though you can’t hear it, you still want her to stop saying stupid fucked up shit. but you can’t turn it off because she’s waving her arms around like she always does and on mute you can make up stories about why she’s doing this. “today on oprah: oprah teaches her guests how to cast spells that will make you so filthy rich you’ll be able to BUY the bird flu” and then there would be a quick shot of oprah swinging her arms around with her pucker mouth yapping “blah blah abracadabra don’t eat that krispy kreme dooby dooby doooo i have massive thighs and voila!” and stacks of money would appear on the couch in between her and tom cruise who is just jumping up and down yelling “i spent more money than that on my baby’s sonar. oprah you suck. you should take ritalin.” and oprah would yell, “ritalin for everyone!! it’s under your chairs” and all the middle-aged couch surfing bitches in the audience would squeal like the fucking world was ending and they just realized that their suck level has caused them to live their entire lives right up to this last day as starving virgins who think fucking macrame and holiday themed sweater vests are the bomb shit. they all have revelations as they reach for their ritalin, “i totally fucking suck and my life is worthless” and they down the whole bottle of ritalin and audience members start dropping like flies, one by one, with a thunderous thud and oprah just waves her arms again and, in a cloud of smoke, everything goes back to normal except everyone’s shoving white castle hamburgers in their mouths.

what the fuck?

the episode is about women having affairs with married men. one of the mistresses is now “showing us how she carried out the affair”. what? what? isn’t that called the fucking birds and the bees? he stuck his dick in you! that’s how! we all know already but thanks for coming out, cum bucket. oh, hey, oprah says she’s “the classic other woman”. OH MY GOD SOMEONE SHUT THIS DEMON UP.

I’d chat on the internet with other friends saying shit like,

Courtney
i yelled at oprah today cause she sucks.

Friend
um, you mean you yelled at the TV

Courtney
no i yelled so intensely that it sent a ripple thru the space-time continuum and i’m pretty sure she felt it, i saw her fat jiggle.

Friend
i don’t need to hear about your sexual perversions

Courtney
ain’t nonthin sexual about oprah’s wigglin jigglies.

Friend
keep telling yourself that

Courtney
im on the verge of tears now

Friend
just because i exposed your sexual deviance doesn’t mean i don’t respect you

Courtney
if i could cyberspin on my heel i totally would. hrmph.

Friend
with some weak-assed asterisk
don’t make me come up there an whup ya

When Dr. Phil launched, my loathing for Oprah became rooted even deeper into every fiber of my being. She birthed an¬†entire show devoted to parading around the mentally ill. Dr. Phil is nothing short of¬†a predator,¬†watching¬†people like a ravenous lion, and the moment someone is overwhelmed by some crippling mental health issue, he pounces. He showed up at the hospital when Britney Spears had a breakdown, salivating at the ratings he knew he would get if he could have her dance like a monkey on his show, spilling her guts about her personal struggles. He dragged actress Shelley Duvall onto his stage while she was clearly suffering delusions, claiming Robin Williams was still alive and a “shapeshifter”. There was the woman named Tonya who sat in his plush chair and explained to the world that she spoke with Barack Obama in her head; the time he held an intervention for model, Jael Strauss exposing her meth addiction to the world without her consent; he’s posted¬†bail for¬†violent criminals so they could appear on his show; sent those struggling with addiction to questionable rehabilitation facilities and hawks woo-filled bullshit like his weight loss pills over which he was forced to settle a class action lawsuit costing him multiple millions of dollars.

There’s nothing good about this man. Nothing at all.

What’s worse is that the two of them, Oprah and Dr. Phil, this dynamic duo of duplicity,¬†had you all convinced it was all in the name of education, awareness and helping people. Parents would bring their ADHD kids out on stage and complain about them to the entire world, while Dr. Phil would talk to them all condescending like,

“What are you hoping to achieve by being so sexually promiscuous? Cause I can tell you, there are only two things you can really get out of it: babies and AIDS.”

and the mindless, unquestioning crowd roars with laughter…

Fuck you Dr. Phil. Fuck you and fuck your braindead wife, too.

Fuck you Dr. Phil. Fuck you and fuck your braindead wife, too.

 

These children – hurting children – whose behaviour proves how down on themselves they already are, are marched out onto the Dr. Phil stage and verbally paddled in front of America. Divorces and infidelity, obesity and eating disorders, anxiety and depression, things that made people truly struggle and hurt and consider self-harm – these things were all entertainment for us, now. They were all worth a buck to Oprah and that’s all she saw out of all of it: billions and billions of dollars.

It got even worse when Dr. Oz became a thing, hawking the alternative medicine, holistic lies and fad diets. This snot nozzle of a human being making empty promises to desperate people about how to lose weight, prevent cancer and cure the common cold. Billions more dollars pumped into Oprah’s wallet at the expense of the wellbeing of all of us.

The icing on top of the cake arrived when I became aware of multiple instances of Oprah talking down to atheists as though we are less than her,

And thirty years earlier,

Clearly, the woman thinks she’s better than us non-believers, even though¬†she’s reached a crescendo in her career now where she’s pushing the works of such snake oil salesmen as Deepak Choprah.

If all of this is not enough to convince you that Oprah is a tit storm of a¬†human being, perhaps her cash-draw idea of putting Lindsay Lohan up on our screen making¬†her private struggles all of our business – of course she’d agree to it, Oprah probably offered her an insane amount of money and she was struggling in her career. Of course Oprah took advantage of that – this is the very definition of exploitation and you don’t have to like Lohan to see that.

Oprah’s¬†evil peaked when she pushed Henrietta Lack’s son into signing a document with Oprah and HBO which would end his ability to speak of his mother without first seeking Oprah’s permission. Luckily, the man was too smart to be swayed by her glistening billions and didn’t sign it as asked.

With all of this in mind, I have little reason to believe that anyone who still considers themselves a fan of this ditchpig is of sound mind or has an ounce of compassion in their entire body. I often criticize her in public and I will never stop.

So, when I was asked to be less critical of Oprah because she is a symbol of empowerment for the black community, you can imagine I was more than a little gobsmacked. I mean, just give me a minute and I can come up with a hundred better people to look up to: Barack Obama, Michelle Obama, Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, Frederick Douglass, Arian Foster, Valerie Jarrett… and on and on and on.

Oprah is scum.

Essentially, a request was being made for me to overlook all the things that made me loathe Oprah simply¬†because of the colour of her skin. I should ignore her overt exploitation¬†of other people’s pain and struggle; I should ignore the fact that she pushes bullshit solutions to real problems; I should ignore her vulturous nature and the many people who have been truly hurt by her. Nevermind her proteges like Dr. Phil and Dr. Oz who have been groomed to carry on the exploitation in her wake; forget the very real people behind the gut-wrenching stories she crams down our throats. Forget all that. She’s black¬†and she made it big against the odds and we should all respect her for that.

Right here… this is the racism of lower expectations; the idea that we must not expect as much from minorities as we do from white people. It’s the same idea¬†as saying you should look up to the drug dealer in the mansion up the road because he’s Hispanic and has seen considerable monetary success. It’s the same shit: using people’s weakness to fund your own lavish lifestyle.

It’s just another instance of this¬†new idea that’s been infecting pop culture lately. The idea that we cannot criticize nor hold accountable for their actions anyone who is not white. You especially can’t criticize or hold accountable anyone of a different skin colour¬†if you, yourself, are¬†white. I’m reminded of the constant flow of bullshit that comes from Tariq Nasheed’s Twitter feed:

When a black man is accused of anything, it is racism. When we criticize a successful black American, it is racism. When we don’t like every last person whose skin colour is darker than our own, we are clearly vile racists and should be shut down.

Here’s the thing, though. I was raised to see people as individuals, not as a member of their race. I was raised to judge people by their deeds, not by the colour of their skin. I was raised to aspire to colour blindness when it comes to human beings. When I meet someone new, I don’t lower my expectations of them further¬†the darker their skin is. That’s what racist people do. I hold a black man to the same standard as a white man because there is no fucking reason in the world to think a black man is capable of less than a white one. I hold a black woman to the same fucking standard I do a white¬†woman because there is no reason on earth to think a black woman is less capable than a white woman.

I dislike Oprah. I dislike Oprah because she uses people’s pain to fill her bank accounts with billions of dollars. She literally feeds on the suffering of others. It’s the same way I feel about white people like¬†Joel Osteen, Dr. Phil, Nancy Grace and Maury Povich. My dislike of Oprah has nothing the fuck at all¬†to do with her skin colour and every-fucking-thing to do with the fact that she is a vile excuse for a human being.

If you ask me to change how I feel about her because of the colour of her skin, you are the racist. Not me.

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  • Sean Mills

    Anyone who doesn’t like holiday-themed sweater vests is a racist. JUST KIDDING.

    For some reason, your ‚Äúmassive thighs‚ÄĚ remark made me laugh out loud.

    I agree with the entire article. I imagine you have also been called an islamophobe for criticizing Islam.

    • Dr Z

      EVERYONE and ANYONE who criticizes Islam is almost immediately branded as an Islamaphobe (not just sexy atheist godless moms) ūüėČ

  • You know? The only thing I regret about reading this is that I didn’t start following your blog until quite recently!

  • Choose_Freewill

    Although I agree with most of this piece, I have one issue with something you wrote – the concept of “colourblindness”.
    As someone who was raised with racist ideals and had those ideals reinforced in a community rife with prejudice, I came to learn that the idea of colourblindness was, in fact, a way for racists to sound like they were open-minded but, in reality they were being dismissive.
    I definitely don’t think that of you – I read your blogs all the time and see no evidence of those prejudices in your writings (in fact, quite the opposite). I’m just offering food for thought.

    • Durinn McFurren

      I disagree. Perhaps ‘colourblindness’ is used by racists as a cloak for racism. And we shouldn’t overlook the personal experiences with racism that individual people have had. However, the principle of colourblindness is simply that we should treat people as individuals, regardless of their skin colour, and that is the only way to NOT be racist.

      • Choose_Freewill

        That would be ok if the standards were even, but we know they are not. I agree with the spirit of your comment, but th