This is truly a WHAT-THE-CUSS?! story if I ever heard one.
Reported from the Maynard Institute:
A black female meteorologist has been fired from the ABC affiliate in Shreveport, La., she told Journal-isms, because she responded to a racial remark posted by a viewer on the station’s Facebook page.
KTBS-TV’s action against Rhonda Lee followed a previous response by Lee to a viewer who questioned whether she should wear her short Afro, suggesting she put on a wig or grow more hair.
Yes, people. This hillbilly wrote in and said that they lady was nice enough, delivered the weather pretty accurately, but…she didn’t have enough hair for his taste.
On Oct. 1, a viewer identified as Emmitt Vascocu wrote, “the black lady that does the news is a very nice lady.the only thing is she needs to wear a wig or grow some more hair. im not sure if she is a cancer patient. but still its not something myself that i think looks good on tv. what about letting someone a male have waist long hair do the news.what about that (cq).” [SOURCE]
Here’s a photo of the woman in question:
Take a look at this woman. She is divine.
Oh, but I bet I know what you’re thinking. Did Rhonda respond to the viewer’s email with neck-rolling coupled with tongue-lashing precision to his man-jewels? Nope.
Here’s what she wrote:
Hello Emmitt–I am the ‘black lady’ to which you are referring. I’m sorry you don’t like my ethnic hair. And no I don’t have cancer. I’m a non-smoking, 5’3, 121 lbs, 25 mile a week running, 37.5 year old woman, and I’m in perfectly healthy physical condition.
“I am very proud of my African-American ancestry which includes my hair. For your edification: traditionally our hair doesn’t grow downward. It grows upward. Many Black women use strong straightening agents in order to achieve a more European grade of hair and that is their choice. However in my case I don’t find it necessary. I’m very proud of who I am and the standard of beauty I display. Women come in all shapes, sizes, nationalities, and levels of beauty. Showing little girls that being comfortable in the skin and HAIR God gave me is my contribution to society. Little girls (and boys for that matter) need to see that what you look like isn’t a reason to not achieve their goals.
“Conforming to one standard isn’t what being American is about and I hope you can embrace that.
“Thank you for your comment and have a great weekend and thank for watching.”
And for that, she was fired. This woman embodied the composure, class and grace that we talk so much about, and she STILL got fired. She took the opportunity to have a “teachable moment” with someone completely ignorant of Afro-textured hair and got kicked in the teeth for it. This, to me, is wholly unacceptable. This is a pile of stinking dog shit. I hope that other members of the media will take up her cause (I’m looking at you Soledad O’Brien. Looking dead at you, Miss Black in America).
In ABC’s defense, they have an across-the-board policy that the talent not reply to emails. And hell, rules are rules, right? But what I bet ABC didn’t count on is the cluster-cuss about to rain down on them in 3…2…1….
What you see here ladies and gents, is what could be a national sensation that could spark a revolt. She’s about to be a martyr for the Natural Hair Movement.
Here’s the station’s contact info. Get busy. But before you do, here’s Ms. Lee’s Facebook page. Send her some good vibes.
312 E. Kings Highway
Shreveport, Louisiana USA 71104
Main Number 318-861-5800
318-219-4680 (fax) Email
Send Press Release to: Email
George Sirven 318-861-5821 Email
Jan Elkins 318-861-5843 Email
Randy Bain 318-861-5880 Email
Sales (New Media)
Patrick Denofrio 318-861-5896 Email
Sales (KPXJ CW21)
Chris Tingle 318-861-5820 Email
News Room 903-832-5827
903-838-2654 (fax) Email