Michael Bullerdick, Yes Essence Magazine White Male Editor Fired. : ThyBlackMan

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Michael Bullerdick, Yes Essence Magazine White Male Editor Fired.

April 23, 2012 by  
Filed under News, Opinion, Weekly Columns

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(ThyBlackMan.com) Essence Magazine’s editor-in-chief, Constance White, was forced to back pedal when one of her editors, Michael Bullerdick, forgot that even a “private” Facebook page (pic below) can still end up embarrassing you in public.

Michael Bullerdick, the infamous White guy hired at Essence as a Managing Editor last summer, has turned out to be the kind of Right Wing, Fox News watching, Tea Party attending, first Black president hating, extremist that we hear about in scary racist bed time stories. Michael Bullerdick isn’t just a man with a few conservative viewpoints, he’s the kind of Republican who is so  angry at Black people and civil rights, that he puts it all over his Facebook page.  I wouldn’t be surprised if Bullerdick owns one of those “Don’t Re-nig” bumper stickers that are all the rage among Right Wing nut jobs.

Michael Bullerdick was busted after the website Journal-isms sent a screenshot of his page to the editor.   On the page, Bullerdick attacked civil rights leader Al Sharpton as a “Race Pimp,” went after President Barack Obama as a radical, and touted videos by the late Andrew Breitbart, attacking Attorney General Eric Holder.  The commentary wasn’t just a matter of simple disagreement on policy, but was the kind of racial hatred that one would expect from the kind of Right Winger that even other Republicans might find embarrassing.

Michael Bullerdick is certainly not the kind of person who should be, in any way, responsible for the editorial content at what used to be a leading publication reflecting the views of Black women all across America.  That would be like allowing Jesse Jackson to become a producer for the “Rush Limbaugh Show” or putting ex-stripper Nene Leakes in charge of this year’s debutante ball.  The fit is awkward, to say the least and not one that the majority of Black women or — Black America for that matter — would ever approve.

Let’s be clear: Michael Bullerdick being White is not the issue, although one could argue that there are thousands of talented Black female journalists locked out of White organizations who would be quite qualified to speak to the Black female experience in America. What is most problematic is the fact that Bullerdick is a guy who identifies with the values and beliefs of those who work night and day to preserve our nation’s long-held commitment to racial inequality.

The union between Michael Bullerdick and Essence Magazine was the kind of awkward arranged marriage that leaves the bride sobbing in the dressing room when she realizes she has no choice.  One can also easily argue that this man has absolutely no respect for Essence Magazine, its readers or what the magazine represents to the black community.  By showering his Facebook page with borderline racist, inflammatory rhetoric, while taking a paycheck from Essence, he is effectively saying, “I don’t care what any of you people think.”

The lesson that we can learn from Essence Magazine is that financial tradeoffs always have consequences. One can’t blame Essence Magazine for pursuing a partnership with Time Warner, but as Black people, we can sometimes be so excited about the White man offering us money, that we forget that nothing is given away for free.  In many cases, we view money as a source of liberation, when it actually becomes a path to deeper slavery.   In fact, one of the greatest impediments to the advancement of Black people is our love and addiction to capitalist commodities that we do not control.

I’m not angry with Essence Magazine or Constance White for hiring Michael Bullerdick as one of their editors.  But if I were a black female, I’d be livid.  The power that media has in controlling the thinking of Black men, women and children is not to be taken lightly, and the idea that someone like Michael Bullerdick is being given direct access to our most-cherished institutions should be serious cause for alarm.

Staff Writer; Dr. Boyce Watkins
Dr. Boyce Watkins is the founder of the Your Black World Coalition. For more information, please visit http://BoyceWatkins.com.


7 Responses to “Michael Bullerdick, Yes Essence Magazine White Male Editor Fired.”
  1. Barbara Book says:

    This doesn’t look good for Constance White……and its a year since her tenure and the magazine is still so thin…..Where are the advertisers?

  2. Patsy says:

    When the unemployment rate of African-Americans is double than everybody else regardless of our diplomas, we have every right to question the hiring practices in this country!!!

  3. Patsy says:

    When the unemployment rate of African-Americans is double than everybody else regardless of our diplomas, we have every right to question the hire practices in this country!!!

  4. hoodgirl says:

    Obama’s personal secretary is Anita Decker who is white succeeding, Katie Johnson born in 1981, who is also white and served as Obama’s personal secretary from January 2009 thru June 2011. Even Bill Clinton “Bubba” had a black secretary. It appears that you guys are barking up the wrong tree and should put down that kool-aid laced with cyanide.

  5. Patsy says:

    I meant editors-in-chief

  6. Patsy says:

    Can someone name us big magazines from the mainstream which have African-American editors?

  7. Kmansfield says:

    Wow. I’d like to know more about this partnership.

    Managing Editor is more than just one of their editors. He’s in charge of them, no?
    I’m not black but there are so many instances like this, or government and party apparatchiks employed at TV news and blogs.
    Jane Harman’s husband bought Newsweek for $1.

    David Gergen, political analyst is also part of the Kennedy School of Government advises specificlaly the Black Leadership students.

    There are a million instances like this, and Gergen isn’t even one of the radicals like Francis Townsend.

    You should be angry about this. We all should.

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