The N-Word Debate

Broadcasting Bigotry?

During a videotaped interview, Becky gives her thoughts on the N-word. "I think that some people, specifically black people, exploit the N-word and use it to their own advantage " whether it's for money, or attention or another goal they might have," she says. "BET, Black Entertainment Television, to me, is one of the biggest double standards when it comes to media, because people are deliberately separating themselves but then say they want to be treated like equals. Black people, who use racism to their own advantage, could do a lot more with their lives if they just tried a little harder."

On Dr. Phil's stage, Becky explains her position. "I'm not saying all black people are like that, by any means. I work with people who are black, very nice people," she explains. "I'm very comfortable around them."

"I don't know if you've ever been to the South, but if you walk by a construction site, there can be a bunch of redheads standing there, they're going to give you the same treatment," Dr. Phil says.

"Those are the kinds of people that I see on the media, the kind that I see that commit crimes and get put in jail. That's not necessarily how it is; it's what I've been exposed to," Becky maintains. 

Hill challenges Becky's logic. "BET " and you said it's a double standard, and it's racist in certain ways, and it is what it is " BET is owned by Viacom. It's not owned by black people," he observes. "It happens to be same company that owns my show, CSI:New York."

"And this stage we're sitting on," Dr. Phil quips.

"Even though it's called Black Entertainment Television, Viacom, Inc. owns it," Hill reiterates.

"One of the things we're talking about here is not really dealing with a core issue," Dr. Phil says. "There's a level of intellect where you say, ‘Yes, I know there are black men and women who are wonderful citizens, and loving moms and dads and talented artists.' We know all that. You can say it intellectually, but there is a really deep-seated bias that has been programmed, across time, where there is this negative filter that some people look through."

Dr. Phil says he's fortunate to have had a diverse upbringing. "Because I grew up in athletics in my school, which was about 50/50, I had the opportunity, very early on, to meet and bond with people from other races," he says. "I slept in their homes, and ate at their tables, and they were in my home, and I got to see that they were regular folks, just like me. We were as poor as they were. So you get exposure, and I think there has been a lack of that in America. I think it's wonderful to have this kind of discussion here, where everybody can talk openly about it, and maybe cause people to think a little more and challenge those things that are embedded in them."


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