Michael Rapaport And The Era Of The Disrespectful White Ally

To some, actor Michael Rapaport is symbolic of a problem that has been haunting black folks in America almost since we came to these shores. That being, how to deal with the white guy who insists upon being an ally, but ultimately is revealed to be just a degree or two better than card-carrying racists. 

While those heavy southern days of summertime dread are not entirely gone, the only thing that has completely changed is the methods by which our kinfolk are dispatched. Today it is the officer’s bullet and not the hangmans rope. Today, it is not the New Hampshire born Union officer who turns his back on blacks when southern terrorism arose in the south following Reconstruction. Today, it is the white ally who continually, predictably stings and toys with black sensibilities while making a living off those very same sensibilities he insults.

MichaelRapaport on Twitter

Anybody that kneels on 9/11 is getting Aiello’ed & possibly dropped from my Fantasy Football Team. Think it thru fellas for real!

Quite some time ago, around about the time Rapaport waded into the debate on whether black athletes should use their celebrity to bring light to something like police brutality and accountability.  His Twitter post was basically a resounding no. 

He also had a bunch to say when fans speculated about Janet Jackson not being allowed to perform at the Super Bowl while Justin Timberlake, who was her accomplice in the wardrobe malfunction debacle, was given a full set.

MichaelRapaport on Twitter

@sleep2dream @southernjawn How is that janky wig not sliding off your head?

Hes also apparently very much a fan of Chris Brown and has defended him against comedian Aziz Azari, himself going through changes, as recently as three months ago.  Thats cool and all, but you can see how the imagery of him defending an alleged abuser looks really bad adjacent to his record of talking crazy toward, and about, black women, right?

How’s about when he directed a film about A Tribe Called Quest, an initially rebuffed at taking creative input from the group?

It was weird and lowbrow. We kinda been dealing with a lot of that stuff from him,” said Q-Tip in 2011. “They werent trying to really honor us as producers and we had some issues behind the scenes, in terms of the contracts and all of that stuff. And then because things werent all the way solid, we didnt go to the Sundance Festival, which was the first festival. And when we didnt go there, then he started going in the press and saying stuff and it got a little adversarial, stuff like you saw like the love letter thats in the Daily News. Stuff like that was kinda like prevalent, but what can you do?

After Show: Does Kenya Moore Think Marlo Hampton Deserves A Peach? | WWHL

During the After Show, Housewife Kenya Moore is asked is she thinks Marlo Hampton deserves to be a Real Housewife and actor Michael Rapaport accuses Kenya of pushing Kim Fields off the show.

Lets not forget how he called Spike Lee, a man whos literally responsible for his career, a sh*t stain for calling him stupid. Do you see a pattern here? Because I sure do, and it damn sure doesnt look like no butterfly.

Today hes in the news again for clashing with yet another black woman. This time around, Rapaport got into it on Watch What Happens Live With Andy Cohen with actress/model Kenya Moore, whose recent fame is largely due to Real Housewives of Atlantaa show Rapaport is a fan of. 

As is the case with New York Knicks basketball, hip-hop, and now reality television, anything that black people have a significant hand in, here comes Rapaport professing his expertise in said arena. And thats not even to mention the myriad of media outlets like ESPN, TNT and, up until recently Barstool Sports, that continually seek him out for his opinion on black culture or black celebrities. 

The two went back and forth as host Andy Cohen gleefully fanned the flames.  While some may have discerned that the exchange was heated others still could have taken it as somewhat tongue and cheek. However, his Instagram post left no doubt in my mind as to how Rapaport really feels about black women despite being romantically involved with several over the years.

Controlling the wheel like! My dude Follow @docantle for all the monkey business

12.9k Likes, 660 Comments – Michael Rapaport (@michaelrapaport) on Instagram: “Controlling the wheel like! My dude Follow @docantle for all the monkey business”

For clarity, Im no fan of the venomous version of Kenya Moore that has helped repopularize the former Ms. USA and star of Rob Hardys first film, Trois, back in 2000. But I will concede that she is simply playing the game as many other reality television stars before her. And she deserves the right to be respected above anything else. 

While Id like to get all Malcolm-ish with a speech about beautiful black women and protecting them, its a given for me and likeminded individuals. Ill simply say that she deserves the rights that any human being would demand for him or herself, rights that Rapaport tried to revoke, albeit temporarily, with his childish yet revealing post.

A particularly sad part is how Rapaports attack doesnt seem uncharacteristic at all, and thats the part thats bothering me.  The fact that this all seems par for the course for him. Keep it a billion, Michael Rapaports black access pass should have been revoked decades ago.

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