File this one under, “What southern racism?” Rhonda A. Lee is a meteorologist at KTBS-TV, in Shreveport, LA. She’s pictured on the left and I think you can see the problem: that hair! Can you say “colored dyke”? Maybe you can’t, but keen viewer Emmitt Vascocu could. He wrote on Facebook, “The black lady that does the news is a very nice lady.the only thing is she needs to wear a wig or grow some more hair.” But it’s not that he’s a racist or a homophobe. He just hates cancer and he fears that Lee may have it. I’m serious: I don’t think that Vascocu is a racist so much as a complete idiot. I’m not writing this article about him.
The story continues. Lee responded to Vascocu the way one ought to: like he was a confused child. First she explained that she was very healthy. Then she noted that she was an African American and that her hair doesn’t grow down—it grows up. Implicit in this is the question, “Do you want me to look like Link from The Mod Sqaud?” She sums up by explaining that people are made in all kinds of ways, “Conforming to one standard isn’t what being American is about and I hope you can embrace that.” And finally ends with, “Thank you for your comment and have a great weekend and thank for watching.”
This is very nice and intelligent and restrained. Let me only add that it in no way resembles how I would have responded, which would begin, “You you fucktard…” So good for Rhonda A. Lee: she was tested by the idiocy of the world and she came through with flying colors! Except: she was fired.
The issue at hand is that she violated a KTBS-TV policy. Not a written policy, mind you. A verbal policy that they’ve had for a long time. A month and a half. It was announced at a meeting. That she was not present for. It isn’t even clear what this policy is. I’m thinking something vague like, “Coloreds have to know their place!”
Bravo KTBS-TV! You’ve made me want to move to Shreveport, just so I can boycott you!