Dear Mr. Harvey,
Did the Kool-Aid taste good? What flavor was it?
Let me guess. It was the red kind.
The red kind is most popular, it's the kind that although initially satisfying, stains everything it comes across: the tongue, the cup, the counter, the carpet, the white onesie a toddler wears when watching "Paw Patrol" on a Saturday morning. A stain so stubborn only time and bleach can break it up and bring it out.
Actually, red Kool-Aid's hue reminds me of blood.
You know, like the blood that ran down Congressman John Lewis' face after Alabama State Troopers fractured his skull on "Bloody Sunday." I'm sure you're familiar with Congressman Lewis; civil rights champion and confidant to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Yeah that guy.
He was the same man president-elect Donald Trump released a tweet about saying, "Congressman John Lewis should spend more time on fixing and helping his district, which is in horrible shape and falling apart (not to mention crime infested) rather than falsely complaining about the election results. All talk, talk, talk - no action or results. Sad."
I guess that doesn't bother you Mr. Harvey. I guess you still think Mr. Trump is a "genuine person."
Or maybe the Kool-Aid you consumed was green, similar to the color of fresh money. You know, the kind of cash you get from the bank in a neat envelope that smells like it was printed five minutes ago.
Wait a minute.
That green Kool-Aid also looks eerily similar to greed. You know, the kind that seeps into your pores the way the stench of garlic sets in your clothes after you've eaten at an Italian restaurant. It looks like the kind of greed that allows a person to bask in its glory at any cost.
Speaking of green, it appears gospel star, Travis Greene, is the latest guest to take a sip of Kool-Aid at Trump's table. Unfortunately, he doesn't have the financial legs you've muscled up over the years. A performance at Trump's inauguration could ruin him, and I would hate to see that happen.
Anyway, let me get back on topic!
Regardless of the flavor, in an unprecedented move you not only sipped from Trump's cup of Kool-Aid, you gulped it down, expecting those of us who've backed you for years to follow suit. But this time, droves of us have opted not to indulge. Although satisfying to your tongue, Trump's Kool-Aid tastes bitter to many of us. Its aftertaste of deceit, discrimination and narcissism is too nauseating to bare.
On Friday afternoon, you crossed over to "the other side" Mr. Harvey. A side most minorities dare not venture to, because we recognize how its systematic suppression can reduce us to rubble under its weight. A side that although advantageous at first reveals the mirage placed in front of us by the wealthy one-percent, by the bigots and by those with tainted views of justice and equality.
Mr. Harvey, has the black community failed you so severely in your advocacy efforts your only resort was to meet with a man who's made minimizing minorities his underlying mission? Did we disavow you so badly you had to join forces with a man who tweets with reckless abandon about everything from President Barack Obama's birth certificate to his displeasure with "Saturday Night Live" monologues. A man who's stripping over 20 million Americans of healthcare.
Let me be frank Mr. Harvey.
You can play the game and play it well without abandoning your jersey in exchange for the other team's. You can challenge the system and petition for your people without going over to the other team's huddle to solicit their counsel.
I can't help but wonder what happened in that meeting.
Did you challenge Donald Trump on his despicable stances? Did you back him into a corner about policies he's pushed for, such as "Stop and Frisk," which directly affects the same neighborhoods you'll be "working cooperatively" to help?
And before you say, "It was just a meeting," let me offer this.
On the surface, your meeting didn't fuel my outrage. My displeasure stems from how you went into that meeting one way and came out another. It's how in November you emphatically stated, "you cannot be the president and use the P-word," then on Friday you changed your tune and called that same man genuine. Now all of a sudden you and Trump are "good friends," chatting about golf and shared acquaintances. The juxtaposition is too stark to not have been coerced by a hefty promise.
Mr. Harvey, I hope you understand despite your best efforts, your admonishing of Donald Trump publicly has failed to sway many of us in the black community. We don't, nor have ever seen our reflection in Trump's smoke and mirrors, and despite his best efforts to use you as his personal Windex, things aren't clearing up.
I hope whatever you were promised was worth it. I hope the Kool-Aid you consumed will leave you refreshed for years. But please know the stain of your decision to drink from Trump's cup will sit on the hearts and minds of those who believed in your life's work and motives.
- Sharí Nycole
Check out Steve Harvey's press conference after meeting with Donald Trump: