Ugh, I can’t even believe this is a thing, but whatever. Russell Simmons‘ All Def Digital site posted this “comedy” video featuring DeStorm Power, Shanna Malcolm and Jason Horton. Called ADD History: Harriet Tubman Sex Tape, the video was described as an “off-record account of how Harriet Tubman blackmailed her master into letting her run the Underground Railroad”.
It was incredibly tasteless, considering it made light of what was definitely not consensual sex between Harriet Tubman and her “master”, and was just all around disgusting. So much so that along with a good chunk of the Internet, even the NAACP requested the video be taken down, and Russell stepped in.
Here’s his statement:
“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.”
My eyes are rolling so far back in my head, I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to see straight ahead of me again. Basically he’s full of shit and I don’t believe his apology for a split second, especially not when “LOL” is an appropriate part of a tweet he posted soon after:
I I guess I have a sensitivity chip missing. Lol. Haven't been in trouble since defjam. Sorry if people r hurt :-(
— Russell Simmons (@UncleRUSH) August 15, 2013
I know this is a celebrity gossip site and not Jezebel, so I will refrain from getting on a political high horse, but it’s awful that black women are able to be portrayed this way in the name of “comedy”, when if it was a black man, all hell would break loose within the community. Such bullshit.