Posted in Breaking News, Human Interest, Trending

TMZ’s Van Lathan’s message to Kanye West taught the world don’t be afraid to tell the powerful, rich, and famous they are wrong

 

Lathan_West
Screenshot: TMZ Youtube

 

TMZ producer Van Lathan has taught the world especially people of color to speak up.

BE UNAFRAID to take on people who have power, fame and money when they are wrong, even Kanye West.

Lathan was not going to allow the Grammy winner to walk out of the TMZ newsroom Tuesday without telling him he was wrong for saying 400 years of slavery was a choice.

West had shouted in the TMZ newsroom “Do you feel that I’m being free, and I’m thinking free?” It looked like most people were stunned, and not sure what to say or respond.

That’s when Lathan had enough. (Video 1:46)

Lathan’s reaction:

I actually don’t think you’re thinking anything. I think what you’re doing right now is actually the absence of thought, and the reason why I feel like that is because Kanye you are entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to believe whatever you want, but there is fact and real world, real life consequence behind everything that you just said. While you are making music, and being an artist, and living the life that you earned, by being a genius, the rest of us in society have to deal with these threats to our live.

We have to deal with the marginalization that’s come from the 400 years of slavery that you said for our people was a choice. Frankly, I’m disappointed, I’m appalled and brother, I’m unbelievably hurt, by the fact that you have morphed into something, to me that is not real.

Kanye West apologized to Lathan who told him “You have to be responsible…”

IF SOMEONE IS WRONG, SAY SO

Shout out to TMZ and Lathan, because this is why diversity in the newsroom is important. Here is an African-American producer who was not afraid to take on one of the most famous and powerful African-American entertainers in the world.

I’m like Lathan, there is no way I would have allowed West to walk out that newsroom without telling him he was wrong in what he said.

Too many people today are afraid to speak up. They are afraid to tell a person they are wrong, because they fear someone will get angry. They fear being criticized or judged. They fear not being liked and many are afraid to lose their jobs.

Don’t let all that stuff mess with your mind when you can correct a wrong.

I don’t think Lathan had one ounce of fear when he confronted West, and look who we are talking about today.

My message to all of you:

The next time you hear someone say or do something that is WRONG, say something, do something, because silence does not make the world better.

Source: TMZ YouTube

 

 

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Author:

Journalism is my life. I've been a reporter for 36 years. My office is the world. During my career I have been honored with 50 journalism awards and nominations. I'm also an Emmy-nominated TV commentator. I'm currently the VP of Programs for SPJ Fort Worth Chapter. I'm also the former VP of Online for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.

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