“What was he thinking, he should have known better”, were the thoughts on the minds of black men and woman who watched a three minute video that mogul Russell Simmons gave his stamp of approval to appear on his new All Def Digital Youtube channel, which depicts a black woman in character as Harriet Tubman performing sexual acts on a white man in character as a slave-owner, making a mockery of Tubman’s historical achievements in freeing enslaved blacks.
Whereas during the actual times of slavery black women were forced against their will to perform sexual acts, the spoof video that appeared on Simmons Youtube channel made Harriet into a sexual object of her own consent and free will freeing the slaves, which seems like a slap in the face to ancestors of black men and women.
Simmons later released an “apology”:
In the whole history of Def Comedy Jam, I’ve never taken down a controversial comedian. When my buddies from the NAACP called and asked me to take down the Harriet Tubman video from the All Def Digital YouTube channel and apologize, I agreed.
I’m a very liberal person with thick skin. My first impression of the Harriet Tubman piece was that it was about what one of actors said in the video, that 162 years later, there’s still tremendous injustice. And with Harriet Tubman outwitting the slave master? I thought it was politically correct. Silly me. I can now understand why so many people are upset. I have taken down the video. Lastly, I would never condone violence against women in any form, and for all of those I offended, I am sincerely sorry.
Neither myself nor many on Twitter have taken Simmons apology seriously