Mo’Nique and Steve Harvey’s Conversation on Telling the Truth in Hollywood

Mo’Nique and Steve Harvey sat down and had a discussion on his talk show about her treatment in Hollywood, but specifically Netflix’s offer of $500,00 for a comedy special. Mo’Nique was being offered significantly less than white female comedians like Amy Schumer and black male comedians like Chris Rock. Because of this, Mo’Nique called out Netflix and called for a boycott of Netflix as well. This discussion between the two was prompted because Steve Harvey did not approve of how she handled the situation. During the discussion, Mo’Nique explains that she was hurt by the fact that many black celebrities had reached out to her privately to support her, but were silent when she got backlash. Steve Harvey ended up explaining that he did not like how she handled that situation because speaking out on the truth in Hollywood costs money and he believed that she should have thought about that before speaking out. Mo’Nique ultimately said that integrity was more important than getting a check and Steve Harvey responded in saying that there were other ways to ‘win the war’ and fight for the cause without having to give up your check…

I find what Steve Harvey said incredibly frustrating because you rarely hear about backlash from members of the black community when black men stand up for inequality against themselves. But the moment when a black woman recognizes her worth, sees that she is not being paid what she deserves and speaks out against it and calls for action, she is handling the situation wrong. Steve Harvey’s comment saying she could have handled the situation differently makes me feel like he would rather her be quiet about the inequalities within Hollywood regarding black women. Black women rarely, if ever, tell black men to be quiet or not stand up or be vocal about inequalities they face and stand right beside them fighting for their cause, but it is so difficult to get that same support and solidarity from black men regarding black women inequalities. Black women are supposed to just take the inequalities and suffer in silence while still being expected to fight for their rights. It is also shameful that Steve Harvey cares more about obtaining more and more money rather than speak out against injustices. Steve Harvey earns more and more each year and as of 2017 had a net worth of $140 million. So he is telling us that he could not afford to speak out because he needs to be getting paid? That is ridiculous in my opinion. Almost as ridiculous as P Diddy saying “It is bigger than being billionaires, it’s about owning our culture and leading the revolution.” How can you honestly say that you, as a billionaire, are about a lead the revolution? The revolution must involve destroying our capitalist society which means that billionaires will lose their wealth and distribute it amongst the poor. There is no way to ‘lead the revolution’ without doing that.

It’s difficult seeing black Americans like Jay-Z and P Diddy being billionaires and wanting to achieve that same status through wealth while also knowing that our capitalist system in America was built on the backs of African slaves. ¬†Mo’Nique choosing to use her platform to stand up for inequalities is a step in the right direction. Not holding back to continue receiving the paycheck from the white man is great. But at the same time black celebrities need to realize that the revolution will involve destroying capitalism which will negatively impact them in the short term, but create life better for everyone in the long run.¬†Should we try to be like Jay-Z and P Diddy and fight our way to the top of a inherently racist system or destroy it and create a new one that makes life better for all?

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