Melissa Harris-Perry is no stranger to headlines but it unfolded that the television host and political commentator would no longer be hosting her MSNBC show. After four years of putting in the hard work to develop the show and its following, Perry emailed her colleagues with her dismay for the way the show had been “taken from her,” and the unexplained, unfair treatment she was receiving.
“Here is the reality: Our show was taken—without comment or discussion or notice—in the midst of an election season. After four years of building an audience, developing a brand, and developing trust with our viewers, we were effectively and utterly silenced.” Perry said in her email.
While many are sad to see Perry go, she is receiving overwhelming supported by the audience who love what she has to offer on the discussion of African American politics. Even more so, there undoubtedly is something to be learned from and applauded for the action she took.
Perry stood up for herself and what she believes in against a major player in the news and media industry. She spoke her truth and in doing so gave us a 101-crash course in real black girl magic in action. Exuding the strength, courage, confidence, intelligence, self-awareness, and everything that makes up the magic that is black women, these quotes were pulled from Perry’s email.
“I will not be used as a tool for their purposes.”
“I am not a token, mammy or little brown bobble head. I am not owned by Lack, Griffin or MSNBC. I love our show. I want it back.”
While MSNBC may believe that I am worthless, I know better. I know who I am. I know why MHP Show is unique and valuable. I will not sell short myself or this show. I am not hungry for empty airtime. I care only about substantive, meaningful, and autonomous work.
A lesson to learn.
This is a lesson for all black women on what it means to truly know your worth and not settle for anything less, not to just accept what is given, just to have. Society has conditioned us to be happy just to be in the room, when we know we should be sitting at the table. On many occasions, we’ve allowed ourselves to be “tokens”, and stay in misery going with a flow that is not fitting to us. We can stand up for ourselves. We are qualified. We won’t be silenced. We won’t take scraps over the feast. We know who we are and our worth.
We stand with Melissa Harris-Perry and applaud her for unapologetically letting her black girl magic be known and being a great example for all women.