Ben Vereen
Ben Vereen

In the never ending discussion about black images in the media, legendary entertainer Ben Veeren isn't exactly a happy man. In a recent lecture about race, politics and the status of African-Americans in Hollywood given at Aaron Davis Hall at Harlem City College of New York, Vereen said that reality TV is "the new blackface making us look like buffoons".

He continued on the subject saying that "ever since Presdient Obama was elected, we've been getting less and less roles. They will continue to do that if we don't say anything. We do not stand behind our artists who are there for us to express our truths".

He also said that Tyler Perry and Spike Lee should get rid of any animosity that they have for each other and join forces to create new opportunites. "I want to say, 'Spike take the brother aside. Don't go to the press. Support the brother and encourage him to do more artistic work in our vein that we need done'"

O.K. but how come people always want to have Perry and Spike form a partrnership?  How many times have we heard that before? They're not the only black filmmakers on the planet. How about Spike joining forces with Antoine Fuqua? Dee Rees and Ernest Dickerson? Tyler Perry and Steve McQueen? (Wouldn't that be something? But I wouldn't hold my breath for that one)

Any comments about any of this?