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Empire TV Show Season 2 Coonery Debate

Empire TV Show Season 2: Coonery Debate
The Empire TV show, season 2 debate regarding whether the show is coonery continues as some argue that Fox’s hip-hop drama negatively portrays African American culture.
The Empire TV Show Season 2
The Empire TV Show Season 2
Jason Moore posted the following video in an article titled ‘In Just 90 Seconds The Poet Destroys Shows Like ‘Empire’ for Negatively Portraying Black People in the Media’.
The poet does not mention ‘Empire’ yet the title clearly suggests that the poet’s words are directed towards the show.
In the words of Don Lemon, “No TV show can represent an entire community or ethnicity, nor should it have to.”
The poet states, “Do you really think you got more influence over your kids than we do?” implying that the impact of children’s television consumption cannot be regulated.  If the poet was referring to Empire, he has completely ignored the positive aspects of the show.
Television shows like Empire increase the viewer’s interest by exposing them to a variety of activities the individual may not otherwise know: music, acting and even launching a record label.  Seeing people that look like you create beautiful art that impacts the world inspires you to start creating and living your dreams.
The Genius of Shakespeare
For aspiring actors, Empire acts as a reminder of the importance of William Shakespeare.  Empire’s cast, season 2, includes talented actors that are passionate about their craft.  For many of them, Empire brings them back to acting school where they had to learn about Shakespeare, as the show is based off Shakespeare’s ‘King Lear’.
Shakespeare provides contemporary connections that open pathways to learning for some of society’s most marginalized.  In prisons, inmates that take advantage of educational opportunities have even found valuable lessons about Shakespeare and his plays.  Empire offers a pathway to Shakespeare’s priceless themes, which continue to resonate today.
Although Shakespeare is known for his beautiful love stories he is also praised for his murderous imagination.  It’s only entertainment.
Viewers that are unable to relate to Shakespeare find it easy to relate to Empire.  These viewers are able to discover Shakespeare’s lessons through the amazing acting of Empire’s cast. Season 2 has been packed with numerous Shakespearean themes including love, treachery, honor, bravery and political intrigue.

Gabourey Sidibe’s Empire Excellence
Some believe that overweight black females are not cast as desirable, love interests on television because people will find it unbelievable.  Not Lee Daniels, who has done a wonderful job with Gabourey Sidibe as Becky on Empire.  When you allow the “black on black” crime to tell Empire’s only story you are limiting your viewing experience, as the show offer so much more.

White filmmakers have ignored overweight black females while black comedians have made millions poking fun at her (Martin, Tyler Perry, Eddie Murphy, etc.).  Gabourey Sidibe’s Empire role is yet another positive aspect of the show.  Television shows typically do not hire actresses

Change the Channel
When an idea is put on television, the viewer must decide to agree or disagree with the message.  If you do not agree, change the channel.  If your child is watching television when you are not home, eliminate access to it.
As Madam Prezident explains in the following video “It’s up to the parents to control what the children intake.”
The video was posted on Dr. Boyce D. Watkins YouTube channel.  The same Dr. Watkins who argued that Empire, dramatic television show, is coonery because of the way in which it negatively portrays African American culture.
Are there any dramatic television shows that do not feature a negative ethnic, racial or social stereotype?
Dr. Boyce D. Watkins argues that Fox would never put a dysfunctional white family on television yet Fox put ‘Married… with Children‘ on television for 11 seasons.  The show featured a white dysfunctional family in Chicago.
The New Digital Divide
Dr. Watkins is now selling his app exposing African Americans that are viewed as the perfect consumption machines that often purchase apps like the one recently launched by Watkins.  African Americans that live in urban communities are typically unable to afford the laptops necessary to create content.  Instead they rely on their phones to consume content, like Dr. Watkins’ new app.  This content comes at a cost as blacks are typically enticed by the advertisements perfectly positioned on each of their phone’s apps.
Blacks access the Internet by cellular phones more than the general population.  Many rely on phones to complete tasks that they need actual computers for.  There are too many critical tasks that people are unable to complete via their smartphones including helping their children with homework, accessing important tax information and filling out job applications.  African American households need high-speed Internet access and computers as opposed to smartphones.
Dr. Watkins knows exactly what he has to do to keep African Americans consuming as opposed to creating: offer them an app that adds another $10 expense to their monthly budgets and any time a show, like Empire begins to inspire blacks to create, attempt to shut it down by any means necessary to ensure they continue to consume.
Blacks do not meaningfully contribute to online communities at the same level as their white counterparts.  Moreover African American males have the lowest level of computer and Internet use of any subgroup.  Blacks use the Internet to purchase items, listen to music and visit social media while others generally use the Internet to create content and generate an additional stream of income.
The Internet can be used to conduct the research necessary to write a script for a television show, creating financial freedom and opportunities for other blacks.  This is how Lee Daniels used the Internet to create Empire, hire his own and even offer the Fox Next Empire Artist initiative that will more likely than not create additional opportunities for more African Americans.
Dr. Watkins has a YouTube channel where he can provide his followers content for free and continue to collect the advertisement income that he has been collecting.  Dr. Watkins does not offer any innovative advice on his app that is not available online, for free.  Dr. Watkins, unlike you claim in the video above, we are far from connected.

By Jason John

Jason John is based in Maryland and covers Empire BBK’s News and Entertainment. He was previously a producer for the mobile site, helping to present Empire BBK’s news report to readers. More