Melissa Harris-Perry and MSNBC have gone their separate ways.
While some are outraged over the exit of the African-American host of the “Melissa Harris-Perry Show,” the leader of The National Black Church Initiative (NBCI), a faith-based coalition of 34,000 churches comprised of 15 denominations and 15.7 million African Americans, says he isn’t shedding any tears.
In an email sent to followers Monday, Feb. 29, Rev. Anthony Evans wrote, “At the height of the numerous debates on same-sex marriage, Melissa Harris-Perry degraded the black church for their moral stance and opposition with regards to this issue.”
He continued, “Ms. Harris-Perry hosted a nationally televised program that never allowed for the voices of the black church to be heard. Nowhere did we find that she invited us to be guests on her show. These actions served as indication of seeming conscious efforts to silence the black church.
“Simply put, the actions of her and many of her supporters who advocate same-sex marriage vilified and relegated the characterization of the black church to bigots and hate-mongers. This is not the role or purpose of the church that has inadvertently gotten conveyed to the public through the actions of Ms. Perry.”
Before the official cancellation happened, Harris-Perry was angry that her program had been pre-empted in recent weeks for MSNBC’s up-to-the-minute coverage of the presidential primaries. When asked by the network’s management to participate in the coverage this past weekend, she publicly refused and demanded that her show’s format be honored.
“Our show was taken – without comment or discussion or notice – in the midst of an election season,” Harris-Perry said in an email to her staff that was posted on her Twitter page on Friday.
She said, MSNBC “would like me to appear for four inconsequential hours to read news that they deem relevant,” including more political news. “I will not be used as a tool for their purposes. I am not a token, mammy, or little brown bobble head.”
MSNBC said the pre-emptions were the result of the network’s heavier coverage of the presidential election campaign that heated up with the onset of the primaries.
“In this exciting and unpredictable presidential primary season, many of our daytime programs have been temporarily upended by breaking political coverage, including MHP,” the network said in a statement, which characterized Harris-Perry’s reaction as “really surprising, confusing and disappointing.”
Read Evans’ full article below.
The National Black Church Initiative (NBCI), a faith-based coalition of 34,000 churches comprised of 15 denominations and 15.7 million African Americans sees a double whammy at work by the removal of MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry.
We are aware of the institutional racism that exists and the different standards employed by NBC News during the Brain Williams lying and cheating case. Despite the formidableness of the Brian Williams’ case and the persisting and evident discrimination compared with the case of Melissa Harris Perry, this is not the only reason as to why the black church is speaking out about the removal of Melissa Harris-Perry.
We speak out because of an emanating lesson gained from what happens when the erosion of morality standards occurs and what can happen to those who speak Truth to immoral practices as articulated by the Word of God in the Holy Bible. None of our tears can be a substitute for the understanding of and standing firm on the transformational power of Truth of the Gospel.
At the height of the numerous debates on same-sex marriage, Melissa Harris-Perry degraded the black church for their moral stance and opposition with regards to this issue. The church assumes the position of the Christian teachings and believes that gay marriage is a social construct (which is no marriage at all). The church assumes this position irrespective of President Obama and the Supreme Court’s approval of this expanded or altered definition of marriage.
Ms. Harris-Perry hosted a nationally televised program that never allowed for the voices of the black church to be heard. Nowhere did we find that she invited us to be guests on her show. These actions served as indication of seeming conscious efforts to silence the black church. Simply put, the actions of her and many of her supporters who advocate same-sex marriage vilified and relegated the characterization of the black church to bigots and hate-mongers. This is not the role or purpose of the church that has inadvertently gotten conveyed to the public through the actions of Ms. Perry.
The church takes no pleasure in bringing these concerns to the attention of the public. By no means do we assume a position of righteous indignation. We earnestly do empathize with the pain Ms. Melissa Harris-Perry is experiencing at the moment. Ms. Harris-Perry, too, has raised important issues concerning equality, gender empowerment and race relations in our country. Her voice has offered a necessary perspective to be considered alongside with other voices. Inasmuch as these social issues have been addressed in important ways under the journalistic auspices of Ms. Harris-Perry, the morality and the great principles and teachings of the church remain at stake. The moral position of the church’s authority on same-sex marriage must be protected and revered. The foundation of Christian beliefs remains paramount to the church’s teaching of biblically based marriage, which is between one man and one woman.
Rev Anthony Evans, NBCI president said, “The black church still loves Ms. Melissa Harris-Perry. And we will defend her right to be treated fairly under God’s law and in the work place. The removal of Ms. Harris-Perry suggests she has been treated unfairly by MSNBC and the Black Church speaks vehemently against the dangers of institutional racism that seems to be the traditional norm and practice at MSNBC. Our society in 2016 is a complicated mixed of individuals believing they know what is good for the moral stance of society. As a nation founded upon the principles of Christianity, the media, the government, and people cannot serve as the moral authority on marriage. The Bible remains the moral standard and the Bible does not sanction same-sex marriage. In many ways, while we believe Ms. Harris-Perry owes the black church an apology because of the hurt caused from the shaming of Christian principles and because of her own experiences from having studied theology and having received an honorary degree in theology, we understand that God has the final say in all of our actions and we will be judged accordingly. Yet, in the final analysis, as Ms. Harris-Perry finds herself in time of need, we stand with her to underscore and demonstrate the loving and compassion nature of the church of Jesus Christ.”
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SOURCE: EEW Magazine