BLACK CLERGY CALLS FOR BOYCOTT OF CHRISTIAN TELEVISION’S “THE WORD NETWORK” DUE TO OWNER’S RACISM

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[Religious News\Racism]
Black Bishop George Bloomer had to tell The Word Network's owner Kevin Adell that: “This is not funny. This is not good. That pimp talk and hoe talk has racist connotations for Black people,” after this White Christian tweeted a picture of himself as a pimp with references to Black clergymen as his "hoes."
Photo: Rachel Noerdlinger

Somehow, Mr. Adell, of the The Word Network, thought the above picture of himself as a pimp surrounded by his Black clergy "hoes" was funny.

A group of over a hundred Black clergy members have come together to protest the racially insensitive environment perpetuated by The Word Network, a Christian television network that bills itself as the world’s largest African-American Religious Network and reaches 93 million homes in the U.S.

The Word Network is owned by Kevin Adell, who is white.

On September 19, 2019, Mr. Adell denigrated and humiliated the very community off of which he profits when he sent a text message containing a photo of himself dressed as a pimp surrounded by Black clergymen he referred to as his “hoes.” This racist incident catalyzed the present petition to boycott the Word Network on Change.org that has garnered almost three thousand signatures.

Preachers throughout the country, including, Bishop George Bloomer, one of the prominent clergy members pictured in Adell’s photo, are planning protests in Michigan and in targeted locations across the country. Over a hundred other preachers are joining in the Word Network boycott including: Archbishop E. Bernard Jordan, Zoe Ministries, Pastor Debra Jordan, Zoe Ministries, Pastor Larry Reid, Larry Reid Live, Vickie Yohe, Christian Recording Artist, Paul Crouch, Jr. Impact Network, Lisa Sharon Harper, Freedom Roads, Rev. Anita Faye-Wilson, Apostle Travis Wright, Rev. Yolanda Brown, Center of Destiny Ministries, Rev. Dr. Peter Heltzel, Micah Clergy Table and many others. (Scroll further down for a complete list is at the end).

Although Mr. Adell claims he did not create the image, he wasn’t offended by it and texted it to various staff (many of whom are African-American) including Bishop George Bloomer. The result was a highly hostile work environment for Bishop Bloomer and for others. Bishop Bloomer recently testified to additional incidents of Kevin Adell’s flagrant racism, all of which are are outlined in the Change.org petition.

https://www.change.org/p/the- word-network-black-clergy- allies-call-for-boycott-of- the-word-network?recruiter= false&utm_source=share_ petition&utm_medium=twitter& utm_campaign=psf_combo_share_ initial&recruited_by_id= 27157c90-e82e-11e9-a74e- 4dc15ff3f8a7&share_bandit_exp= skip-18220018-en-US&share_ bandit_var=v2

When Bishop Bloomer stated to Mr. Adell: “This is not funny. This is not good. That pimp talk and hoe talk has racist connotations for Black people.” Adell texted Bishop Bloomer a second time and said that “it’s funny and you should get over it.”

When Bishop Bloomer went to Kevin Adell and his assistant Ralph in person at The Word Network: and told them: “Don’t ever tweet that. You should get rid of it. This is not funny. Don’t play with this and don’t play with it with me.”

Instead of apologizing for his offensive candidness concerning the matter, Adell went further by photoshopping a picture of Bishop Bloomer in a white tuxedo, and underneath the photo typed text that said, “The show last night was good, Tattoo (the dwarf from Fantasy Island who ran around calling Mr. Roarke 'Boss'). Kevin Adell was alluding to Bishop Bloomer being HIS Tattoo, and him being “Boss.” Although Mr. Roarke on Fantasy Island was a good character, the term “boss” in the Black community carries the connotation of “massa,” and that is precisely what Kevin Adell was suggesting.

The article that accompanied the photo-shopped image of Kevin as a pimp and his hoes even refers to him as the “massa” of The Word Network.

The final straw came when Bishop Bloomer texted Adell again, “This is not good. I don’t know what you are doing but stop playing.” Adell replied, “Oh, you’re too sensitive.” Bishop Bloomer explained that what he was doing was the equivalent of a white man wearing black face. Bishop Bloomer told Adell again, “Get rid of this. Stop playing with this.” Kevin then texted Bishop Bloomer a photo of himself in a white tuxedo standing next to a friend of his also wearing a white tuxedo and, as if with a sharpie, he blacked out the face of the friend, thus producing black face and texting it to an African-American man.

As a result of these actions, Bishop Bloomer made the decision to leave The Word Network.

In the face of this blatant racism, made all the more threatening by the increasing demonstrations of hate across our country, we as African-American clergy and allies of the African-American community cannot remain silent. Black-face, pimp and hoe imagery and boss aka “massa” comments are all connected to the historical trauma African-Americans have endured for 400 years in this country.

To ignore Bishop Bloomer’s request to end this line of racist insults and attacks is to ignore the dignity of the African-American community. Kevin Adell may own The Word Network, but it is the Black community that has made the network a success. If the Black community is not respected by The Word Network, then we should pull our support. The actions of Kevin Adell prove that we can no longer trust The Word Network to bring the Gospel into our homes. We, as Black clergy, demand Kevin Adell publicly apologize to Bishop Bloomer and the African-American community. We also demand that cable companies drop The Word Network from their packages.

We are asking Black Clergy, allies and Black people of faith to do the following:

(1) Clergy add your name to this letter and announce from your pulpits during service that we are boycotting The Word Network as a community. When signing the petition please add your full ministry title and first name where it states first name. Email us at boycottwordnet@gmail.com.

(2) Boycott The Word Network by not watching the network and canceling The Word Network on your cable plans.

(3) Unfollow The Word Network on all social media platforms and encourage your followers on social media to do the same.

(4) Members of faith communities send this letter to your clergy person for him or her to sign.

When it comes to injustice scripture tells us in Isaiah 58:1 to “cry aloud and spare not”. We cannot remain silent in the face of racism, disrespect and ultimately the exploitation of our community and our faith. Don’t delay let us act in unity today!

In Faith & Justice,

Concerned African-American Clergy & Allies

 

Archbishop E. Bernard Jordan, Zoe Ministries Pastor Debra Jordan, Zoe Ministries Pastor Larry Reid, Larry Reid Live Vickie Yohe, Christian Recording Artist Paul Crouch, Jr. Impact Network Lisa Sharon Harper, Freedom Roads Rev. Anita Faye-Wilson Apostle Travis Wright Rev. Yolanda Brown, Center of Destiny Ministries Rev. Dr. Peter Heltzel, Micah Clergy Table Minister Onleilove Chika Alston, Beth-El The House of YHWH Minister Derrick Montgomery Dr. Undena Y. Leake Jackson, Power Praise and Deliverance Church Pastor Mark Burns, The Harvest Praise & Worship Center Pastor Brenda Hill, Majesty Christian Church Rev. Dionne P. Boissière, MDiv., Mt. Avery Baptist Church Bishop Jared Jackson Apostle Mary Thomas Rev. Corey L. Teague Bishop Amere May Pastor Mascareen Cohen Apostle Dr. Alexander Gray Senior Pastor Brenda Hill Pastor Teddy Ceasar Paul Crouch Jr. Dr. Lady Moore Apostle Jeremiah Smith Pastor Jessica Jordan, Zoe Ministries Apostle Ken Cox Minister Lorenzo Daughtry-Chambers Dr. Lewis T. Tait, Jr. Bishop S. JaNine Hyman, Ph.D Apostle Dr. A. Louise Bonaparte M.D Prophet Elijah Berrian Overseer Deonta Riley Prophet Everett Ofori-Atta Evangelist Tisha Horton Pastor Donna R. Williams Pastor Genevieve Bruley Rev. Marjorie Goodson Prophetess Phyllis Newsome Pastor Cynthia J. Dunbar Pastor Jesse Bloodsaw Rev. Dr. Robert M Waterman Bishop Kenneth Booker Minister Victory Ledgerwood Pastor Francon Ivy Bishop Dr. KC Moore, Sr. Bishop Usher Apostle Michelle McKenzie Apostle Jeremiah Smith Bishop Kevin Foreman Bishop S. JaNine Hyman, Ph.D. Evangelist Tisha Horton Pastor Donna R. Williams Rev. Marjorie Goodson Prophetess Phyllis Newsome Pastor Cynthia J. Dunbar Pastor Jesse Bloodsaw Apostle Audrea Heard Bishop Kenneth Booker Minister Victory Ledgerwood Prophetess Jeannette Johnson Rev. Ruth Pruitt Rev. Michael McBride, Faith in Action Live Free Prophet William Richards Apostle Clara Joyner Pastor Shawn Adams Rev. Richard Hughes Pastor Jose Humphries, Metro Hope Church Rev. Anita Cobb Minister Lilliette Burroughs Pastor Victoria Burse Pastor Pamela Cook Pastor Barbara Blackwell Bishop Ta' Marryham Bishop J. L. Jackson Rev. Watkins Bishop Steve Burks Rev. Betty Horne Dr. Alex Ellis Dr. Undena Leake Jackson Evangelist Laura Johnson Pastor Sandra Fitzgerald Pastor Shonda Obi Minister DJ Robinson Robinson Dr. Andrea Rockett Dr. G. Harris, Beth-El International Church Evangelist Sheila Nimrod Rev. Rapha Moore Rev. Dr. Micheal J. Johnson Apostle Travis Wright Elder Jawuan Thomas Elder Errin Betterson Pastor Jakari Edmonds Rev. Nefaarud Hensekh Bishop John Jennings Rev. Deborah Jenkins, Faith @Work Christian Church Elder Tamika Benjamin Dr Dennis T. collins Elder Tavaran Ridley Rev. Lonnie Hosea Elder Errin Betterson Prophetess lisa GIbson Evangelist Laura Johnson Minister Ora Eaton Eaton Bishop Stevie Burks Rev. Watkins

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