Larry Elder

When Reverend Sharpton ran for president, he accused the media of racism for ignoring his candidacy. Since the word racist gets recklessly thrown around, does it also apply to the "Today" show?

 Remember when the legendary actor/entertainer/philanthropist Bill Cosby said, "[I]n our cities and public schools we have 50 percent drop out. . . . No longer is a person embarrassed because they're pregnant without a husband. No longer is a boy considered an embarrassment if he tries to run away from being the father of the unmarried child."

 He urged blacks to embrace education, speak standard English and obey the law. How dare he? His comments created such a stir that last year, the "Today" show's Matt Lauer did a pro-and-con segment.

 Now here's where things get interesting. Michael Eric Dyson, a professor at University of Pennsylvania, just wrote a book called "Is Bill Cosby Right?" Dyson goes after Cosby for allegedly unfairly attacking blacks. You know, the standard liberal pap about blaming the "victim," blah, blah, blah. Never mind the tragedy of babies having babies, of a 50 percent inner-city dropout rate or the disproportionately high percentage of black youth involved in crime.

 So who conducted the "Today" show's interview of Michael Eric Dyson? Matt Lauer? No. Katie Couric? No. Al Roker. Nice guy, but what does this say about how seriously the "Today" show considers the problems facing the black community?

 The Roker-Dyson interview was wild. You couldn't help screaming at the television set for Roker to jump in, to challenge some of the silliness, something -- anything. Instead, the "interview" went this way:

 Al Roker: "Do you think there's any validity in some of the things he said?"

 Michael Eric Dyson: "Oh sure . . . there's validity always. Tim[othy] McVeigh had a point. The state is over-reaching. But the way you do it, dropping bombs and castigating of human beings, that's terrible. . . . Let's hold the larger society accountable for creating the conditions that lead to some of the downfalls of the poor people." Roker said nothing.


Larry Elder

Larry Elder is a best-selling author and radio talk-show host. To find out more about Larry Elder, or become an "Elderado," visit www.LarryElder.com.