Another Black male morning news show personality is in hot water on social media for commentary on Will Smith slapping Chris Rock.
Following reactions to TJ Holmes’ comments on Good Morning America, now, Craig Melvin of Today is facing backlash from viewers.
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During a segment on Monday's Today on NBC, Melvin criticized Smith’s decision, stating it feeds into the perception that Black men can’t control their anger.
“It was really disappointing,” Melvin said. “If you’re rearing a boy, especially in this country, you spend so much time talking to our kids about keeping your hands to yourself, controlling your emotions and then there’s also this long-held perception in this country that men of color, especially, can’t control their rage and their anger, and to see someone who’s been that beloved for decades — it was troubling on so many levels,” he added.
Fellow co-host Tom Llamas had a different take on the subject.
“There is so much more to this story. I agree with you about the violence, you’re 100% right, but Will Smith and his wife had been the butt of so many jokes for the last year and I wonder how much of that was there too just bubbling,” Llamas said.
At 94th Academy Awards ceremony on Sunday, Smith got onstage and slapped Chris Rock after the comedian made a joke that seemed to reference wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s battle with alopecia, which causes hair loss. Smith, who won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in King Richard, later issued an apology to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences and Rock on his Instagram page.
Meanwhile, Melvin’s comments quickly mixed comments on Twitter, with some Twitter users knocking him for his remarks and some users agreeing with him.
@craigmelvin and @NBCNews Craig Melvin made a comment reference “men of color” and their attitude, Men of color are in control of their behavior, in our culture, our mothers and mates are off limits to public criticism. Perhaps Melvin needs to come back and visit the hood.
— Jonathan Green (@jcgreen59) March 28, 2022
@craigmelvin Now I usually rock with you but today, you made me sad by speaking against Will on national tv, instead of trying to help white America see that we have emotions and have tipping points too. The man beside you had to make the point. DO BETTER, CRAIG.
— Lauren Lewis (@Bonus_Elle) March 28, 2022
Craig Melvin was 100% correct! Young black boys deserve better that what Will Smith gave them@last night. These kids out here aren’t famous & if they slap someone at school over a fucking joke they’re libel to end up dead! Y’all making excuses for this crap is so toxic! pic.twitter.com/UnFRPheqHM
— LaShawn (@altspinn) March 28, 2022