*Nancy Lee Grahn, better known as Alexis Cassadine on “General Hospital,” did not appreciate Viola Davis’ acceptance speech at the Emmy Awards and fired off a series of tweets attacking the star for choosing the moment to highligh the plight of black women in Hollywood. Grahn even belittled Viola’s Harriet Tubman quote.
Needless to say, she has been shredded by Black Twitter.
After winning for best actress in a drama series, the “How to Get Away With Murder” star opened her speech with a Harriet Tubman quote:
In my mind, I see a line. And over that line, I see green fields and lovely flowers and beautiful white women with their arms stretched out to me over that line, but I can’t seem to get there no-how. I can’t seem to get over that line.
Davis went on to say, “The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is simply opportunity. You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there. …So here’s to all the writers, the awesome people — people who have redefined what it means to be beautiful, to be sexy, to be a leading woman, to be black.”
After the speech, Grahn vented via Twitter: “I wish I loved #ViolaDavis Speech, but I thought she should have let @shondarhimes write it.”
Grahn continued: “Im a f**king actress for 40 yrs. None of us get respect or opportunity we deserve. Emmys not venue 4 racial opportunity. ALL women belittled.”
The soap star even railed against Viola’s Harriet Tubman mention, tweeting: “i heard harriet Tubman and I thought Its a f**king emmy for gods sake. She wasnt digging thru a tunnel.”
@MelioraEsq and i heard harriet yTubman and I thought Its a fucking emmy for gods sake. She wasnt digging thru a tunnel
— Nancy Lee Grahn (@NancyLeeGrahn) September 21, 2015
Grahn deleted most of the tweets, but not before BuzzFeed captured and posted them. The outlet pointed out Grahn’s hypocrisy in tweeting praise for white actress Patricia Arquette when she used her Emmy acceptance speech to highlight the plight of women in Hollywood, while disparaging Davis for doing the same regarding black women.
— jagger blaec (@BasicBlaecGirl) September 21, 2015
Once the Internet convened to set her straight, Grahn tried to moonwalk back her comments – only making things worse.
She suggested that Davis hasn’t experienced discrimination in Hollywood. “I think she’s the bees knees but she’s elite of TV performers,” she tweeted to a fan. “Brilliant as she is. She has never been discriminated against.”
Amidst even more backlash, Grahn began a series of apologies.
“I never mean to diminish her accomplishment. I wish I could get her roles. She is a goddess. I want equality 4 ALL women, not just actors,” she wrote. “I apologize 2 anyone who I offended. I’m women advocate since I became one. After reading responses, I hear u and my tweet was badly phrased.”
She followed up with a lengthier apology.
“I apologize for my earlier tweets and now realize I need to check my own privilege,” Grahn wrote. “My intention was not to take this historic and important moment from Viola Davis or other women of color but I realize that my intention doesn’t matter here because that is what I ended up doing. I learned a lot tonight and I admit that there are still some things I don’t understand but I am trying to and will let this be a learning experience for me.”
But it was too little, too late. Below, a sampling of how Twitter sliced and diced this woman:
— Holly Robinson Peete (@hollyrpeete) September 21, 2015
— Faux Fancy (@scratch_paper) September 21, 2015
— L’Gemma Teller (@MilftasticJJC) September 21, 2015
— It is Right To Rebel (@samdreessen) September 21, 2015
— Sam @TheMJAP (@TheMJAP) September 21, 2015
Trivializing a black woman’s accomplishments as opposed to applauding her @NancyLeeGrahn. As a “human rights activist” shame on you.
— Bar Bae (@lotyslove) September 21, 2015
. @NancyLeeGrahn really has no idea how awfully petulant she sounds. That tweet was laced with ignorance and entitlement.
— Bella Noche (@ParisBurned) September 21, 2015
How you claim to march for our rights when you think “digging thru a tunnel” for Harriet Tubman? The fuck wrong with you? @NancyLeeGrahn
— Darth Kriss (@insanityreport) September 21, 2015
@ViciousFord She blocked me and I didn’t even say anything that mean to her. She is going to be blocking people all day
— Tera_Monique (@Tera_Monique) September 21, 2015
The Virtual United Negro College Fund Tour Heads to NY, DC & NJ on Fri & Sat-Nov. 20 & 21 (EUR EXCLUSIVE!)
*African American students interested in going to college can attend the United Negro College Fund’s (UNCF) Fall 2020 virtual Empower Me Tour. Set for this Friday and Saturday (November 20 & 21, 2020), New York, District of Columbia, and New Jersey will be repped. (This year’s tour kicked off earlier this month in Wisconsin and Illinois). To register, go here.
The Empower Me Tour is an extension of the goals of the UNCF. Founded in 1944, the UNCF, a non-profit, has raised more than $5 billion and helped more than 500,000 students attend 37 private historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs).
The EUR caught up with Stacey Lee, the tour’s director for four years, who discussed the importance of the event.
“The UNCF is the nation’s largest provider of education support to minority students,” said Lee. “The Empowerment Tour has been executed for the past 12 years and last year along we offered over $12 million dollars in scholarships.”
Lee continued, “I think the great thing is that during these times, even with COVID-19, is that a number of corporations (Wells Fargo/P&/FedEx/Disney/Goldman Sachs) and donors have really been providing opportunity and financial access to our schools and students.”
The tour is packed with information and resources so that students and parents have the right tools to make informed decisions.
“It’s a free event that provides educational support, scholarships, interviews with colleges, empowerment, and information on how to get to and through college. We also provide this information for parents as well. We have a parent section that focuses on financial aid and the things you need to get your students to college.”
Lee continued, “Sometimes we have students that don’t realize that they can attend college. They can receive scholarships. Some of them don’t even know what an HBCU is. So, it’s inspirational for me to see these students receive this information and the excitement that’s around this tour.”
In addition to college information, panel sessions on issues affecting the community will also take place. Legendary rapper Bun B will be part of a special My Black Is Beautiful panel. The panel will have discussions with girls and boys and the MC will lead the male portion.
“It’s about empowerment,” Bun B told the EUR. “It’s vital for us to lift each other up and amplify each other’s voices. We just talk about now what that role is in this COVID world. And with everything that we are seeing with young Black men on television, we want to keep them motivated and centered. We want to make sure that they are not discouraged in this moment.”
Ever since Kamala Harris threw her hat into the presidential race and elected vice president of the United States, a spotlight has shined on the fact that she’s an HBCU grad (Howard University) and member of the African American sorority Alpha Kappa Alpha. These facts are not lost on the UNCF.
“Kamala has really boosted people’s awareness about HBCUs and (African American sororities) and the type of people that come out of HBCUs. HBCUS have also provided so many people from science, mathematics, and engineering programs (STEM).”
Bun B added, “We have more than enough examples to show you how beneficial an education from an HBCU can be. So, there is no reason to not be a part of an HBCU because the world is just as available to you as it is for anyone else attending any other type of university.”
New Music Buzz: Jazzy Rita Shelby’s ‘Goodbye 2020’
*SB Music presents “Goodbye 2020” a new single for the times we are in.
“Goodbye 2020” is performed by Jazzy Rita Shelby and written by Miss Shelby (ASCAP) and Eddie Lawrence Miller (BMI).
It’s the perfect anthem to end a year that has impacted the globe.
EURweb’s Jazzy Rita is also a prolific lyricist who has teamed up with Eddie Miller for “Goodbye 2020” because it was timely and convenient for the birth of a song such as this.
Eddie Miller is a coveted keyboardist & vocalist who performs regularly with Brian Culbertson and he’s the Rhodes Festival musical director. Jazzy Rita rose to notoriety as host & performer at The Starlight Jazz Serenade, an annual benefit concert in North Hollywood with an A list of stars. As a teen Miss Shelby was inspired to write songs by the legendary David Porter.
This year has been a year like no other. “Goodbye 2020” is an ode to the world for the year that we have seen and the hope that lies ahead. Radio Programmers click here for adds.
“Goodbye 2020” is released on the SB Music label and was recorded at Wishing Wells Studio in Canoga Park, CA. Willie Daniels and Mildred Black perform background vocals along with Jazzy Rita. The video is produced & directed by Jazzy Rita (LaRita Shelby), filmed & edited by Reggie Simon of Simon Vision Media, with wardrobe styling by Jazzy Rita and Poet Roni Girl’s Army Couture. “Goodbye 2020” is available on most digital platforms. Click here to listen on Spotify.
Celebrate Halloween with ‘Spell’ Starring Omari Hardwick, Loretta Devine and John Beasley / WATCH
*Today/TONIGHT is Halloween and what could be a more perfect way to celebrate than with the release of SPELL? Enjoy the clips below to get you in the spooky spirit!
Omari Hardwick (“Power,” Sorry to Bother You), Loretta Devine (“Black-ish,” Crash) and John Beasley (The Sum of All Fears, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks) star in the terrifying thriller SPELL, coming to Premium Video-On-Demand and Digital today October 30 from Paramount Home Entertainment.
While flying to his father’s funeral in rural Appalachia, an intense storm causes Marquis (Omari Hardwick) to lose control of the plane carrying him and his family. He awakens wounded, alone and trapped in Ms. Eloise’s (Loretta Devine) attic, who claims she can nurse him back to health with the Boogity, a Hoodoo figure she has made from his blood and skin. Unable to call for help, Marquis desperately tries to outwit and break free from her dark magic and save his family from a sinister ritual before the rise of the blood moon.
DIRECTED BY | Mark Tonderai
SCREENPLAY BY | Kurt Wimmer
STARRING | Omari Hardwick, Loretta Devine, John Beasley
AVAILABLE ON DIGITAL PLATFORMS | Apple TV, Amazon Prime Video, Google Play, DirecTV, VUDU, Xfinity, FandangoNOW and more.
Rating | R – violence, disturbing/bloody images, and language
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