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Oprah Winfrey’s interview with Kim Kardashian has become both celebrated and maligned.  Personally, I’ve decided to go with the flow, since everyone else seems to think that it’s normal that the whole country celebrates an untalented woman who became famous with a sex tape.   Oprah’s decision to interview Kim is admittedly a disappointment, since Oprah has built her career on the kind of class that is rare in the TV industry.

But if I were in the room with Oprah Winfrey when she interviews Kim Kardashian, I might be tempted to ask these five questions:

1)      Do you think that a black woman could become a respected celebrity after starting her career with a sex tape just like you?

I can answer this question.  The Kim Kardashian model of success would NOT work for a black woman, since it’s difficult to imagine a black woman going from being a porn star to mainstream celebrity and social icon.  Just ask Montana Fishburne, Larry’s porn star daughter who admitted that Kim was her inspiration.

2)      Are you good at anything?

I agree with President Obama, who simply asked “What is Kim famous for?” during the correspondent’s dinner.  There are millions of people across the nation who are incredibly talented, who will never be interviewed by Oprah.  This is the tragedy of Kim Kardashian.

3)      Have your boyfriends or you been tested for STDs?

One of the thoughts I have when I see celebrities passing each other around like dirty dish rags is whether or not these people realize that STDs are flying through the roof.  Do these people get tested and check one another’s status when they get together for all of these little flings?  All that seems glamorous to the rest of us might not be so wonderful in real life.  In other words, when it comes to the lifestyle of the Kardashians, there should be a warning label that says “Don’t you dare try this ish at home.”

4)      Do you consider yourself to be a role model?  If so, for whom and why?

I’m sure there’s someone out there who has referred to Kim Kardashian as a role model.   She has hundreds of thousands of followers on Twitter and millions of young women who imitate her decisions.  But Kim is not the role model that most fathers (or mothers) would like to see their daughters become.  Oprah, on the other hand, is the kind of mentor that we can all appreciate.   So, the idea that Oprah is validating Kim Kardashian with this interview is beyond disturbing.

5)      Why do you think Oprah Winfrey interviewed you in the first place?

I’ll let Oprah answer that question.  The same can be said for her interview with 50 Cent.  50 Cent has a dog named Oprah who owns a Twitter page, and on the page it says that the dog is “50 Cent’s b*tch.”  Oprah, you’ve come a very long way.

Dr. Boyce Watkins is a Professor at Syracuse University. To have Dr. Boyce commentary delivered to your email, please click here.

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