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Beware the white backlash, Oprah

FIRST LADY OF TV: Oprah Winfrey received a lifetime achievement award at the Golden Globes


Really? Really? REALLY? Just because our first lady of television talk shows delivered a barnstorming speech at the Golden Globes awards ceremony in Los Angeles last Sunday, where she was receiving a lifetime achievement award, America suddenly thinks that she can be commander in chief.

Don’t get me wrong, her speech was really impressive. But what did you expect from the woman who turned conversation into an art form on daytime telly? That’s what she does for a living. You would expect her to deliver. Especially when the topic is sexual harassment in Hollywood.

Given the plethora of true confessionals that she has presided over on her now defunct show from back in the day when Jerry Springer was just a nobody and Jeremy Kyle was barely a twinkle in his parents’ eyes, would we not be flabbergasted if she had lost that deft touch to sympathise, empathise and proselytise?

Having said that, you would be mad, nuts and downright bonkers to transfer the deeds to your three-bedroom semi to some street preacher just because she/he pushed the right buttons at the right time, let alone hand over the keys to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and the nuclear button (which we now know is bigger than Kim Jong-un’s in Pyongyang) to a chat show host whose only political experience seems to have been to organise a couple of soiree’s for a black president and first lady, once upon a time in America.

But, I agree, that lack of experience hasn’t stopped anybody from being president before.

I would just like to remember Oprah the way she has been – impeccable – than to make a fool of herself by threatening nuclear vengeance on America’s enemies because someone at the Pentagon told her to. Which brings me on to another point. What does Stedman think about this? He is
still Oprah’s number one in one of the longest-running affairs in showbiz.

They’ve been together more than 30 years and counting. The couple would have had a discussion about this as they sat down over breakfast on the morning after the Golden Globes, perusing the morning papers which were all full of the chant from the night before.


America has lost its collective intellect. We dun know a’ready. Donald Trump would not be president if Americans were collectively of sound mind and body on that fateful night in November 2016.

Their votes were counted and the walls came tumbling down with a promise of being built again along the Rio Grande on the southern border of the US.

Now, it seems, collective dementia of catatonic proportions is setting in if Oprah is the an- swer to the dumbest question ever. Maybe, they’re only kidding. Maybe the likes of actress Meryl Streep (Hollywood’s much-lauded serial award winner) and the venerable Los Angeles Times are only having a laugh in cheer-leading OPRAH 4 PREZ 2020!

Perhaps they’re euphoric like Manchester United fans were when the cockney reds became the first English team to win the European Cup in 1968 by beating Eusebio’s Benca, after which United fans (who in those days all had northern accents) were singing: “WILSON OUT, BUSBY
IN – HALLELUJAH... WILSON OUT, BUSBY IN – HALLELUJAH” (Harold Wilson being the then British prime minister and Matt Busby being the then Manchester United manager).

Obviously they weren’t serious when they were chanting that. It would have been a disaster for the country and we would have danced our way into the Common Market (as the European Union was then known) a lot quicker.

Busby, being a Scot, a nation who regard the EU as the brightest hope to their lives, where once upon a time – according to the original lexicographer of the English language Samuel Johnson – the road to England from Hadrian’s Wall was the Scottish de nition of ‘happiness’.

I know what you’re thinking: Even if Oprah would make a rubbish president, she can’t be any worse than the present incumbent. And I can see where you’re coming from with that. But that kind of thinking is what got Nigeria in the mess that it is in today.

With our record of choosing numpties to lead our country, anybody could do a bet- ter job than that lot, it’s true. But choosing anybody – while we wait in vain for the true one, or the saviour, or which- ever comes first – has only exasperated the desperate plight of Nigerians.

For me, though, the most compelling reason why Oprah should NOT run for the presidency of the United States is that she’ll win. No doubt. Hands down. Whether that be in 2020 or 2024 or in any other presidential cycle.

Trump knows it. Wall Street knows it. And the so- called alt-right knows it and they’re running scared. They’ve already got the knives out for her and I’d bet my bottom dollar that a handful of “patsies” as Lee Harvey Oswald described himself, are cleaning out their long-range assassination weapons in preparation.

Because they KNOW that should Oprah choose to stand, she’ll wipe the oor with whoever stands against her and she will waltz into the White House with Stedman by her side. And that would be the worst thing that ever happened to African-Americans.

Remember what happened when Obama got elected that first time in 2008. We all thought that it heralded a new America. A non-racist America. An America of equal opportunity without regard to race, or gender, or class, or religion. And many of us chanted along: ‘YES, WE CAN, YES, WE CAN...” Even me.

With the benefit of hindsight we should all have learned by now that a president of colour brings about a blacklash by the great white hopeless.
In other words blame Trump on Obama and NOT on Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman to run for the presidency of the United States over 40 years ago, even though she, unlike Oprah, didn’t stand a snowball’s chance in hell of winning.

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