In this publicity image released by ABC, Brandy, left, and her partner Maksim Chmerkovskiy perform on the celebrity dance competition series, “Dancing with the Stars,” Monday, Nov. 1, 2010 in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/ABC, Adam Larkey)
“I know what Maks (her dancing partner) wants and he knows exactly what I want, and somehow we make all of that work together and we’re true partners now.” –Brandy
by Yussuf J. Simmonds
Sentinel Managing Editor
When the controversy arose whereby Brandy was dismissed from Dancing With the Stars, there was an uproar throughout the community: “How could this happen in this day and time?” some folks asked. Brandy, an accomplished television and movie actress; a Grammy Award singer; an entertainer extraordinaire with years of experience; how can she be given the axe and Bristol Palin remained?
In what was probably the most shocking elimination of the season on Dancing With The Stars program, as the nation watched , fans of Brandy were in awe as she and her partner, Maksim Chmerkovskiy, were eliminated despite their high scores. Then those in shock and awe began verbalizing their displeasure and the focus of their displeasure became apparent: “Brandy was the latest victim of Sarah Palin and the Tea Party, and Bristol rode her mother’s coattails to an unfair victory.”
A random survey of the community’s pulse produced some startling comments.
In an article for the L.A. Watts Times, Joy Childs stated: “I’m not a fan of reality TV-at all. Truly I’ve never watched any of them, including and especially two of the most popular: “American Idol” and “Dancing With the Stars.” But in its 11th season, with not one, not two but three African American celebrities on at the same time on DWTS-Brandy, Kyle Massey and Rick Fox-I thought I might just try to see what the big deal is about this most popular of television genres. It was my humble opinion that at the outset, the best dancers were Brandy, Rick Fox and Jennifer Grey. Maybe, maybe, you could add Kyle Massey-if only for his sheer enthusiasm-and Kurt Warner for his grace,” Childs continued.
Then sampling the voices of those in the community produced similar sentiments.
“I am pissed-off. The program has become political and racist. In my view, Bristol, an unwed mother, should not even be on the program. She is not a celebrity and If she were Black she would not have had an opportunity to compete.” Sophia Carr, of Los Angeles.
“I definitely think it is political with a touch of racism sprinkled in the mix. There is little disagreement that Bristol Palin cannot dance.” Trish Redford, Actress of Long Beach.
“I think the matter revolves more around politics than dance proficiency. Like her mother, who in my view was not qualified to be Vice President, Bristol barely qualifies as a celebrity and cannot dance,” JoAnna Rhambo, Model and Actress, Los Angeles.
Brandy has gotten some of the highest scores from the judges since the contest began while Bristol continues to get the lowest scores. That is a sure sign that the “Tea Party” supporters are ‘blowing-up’ the phones to support their failed VP candidate.” Mioko Lollis, Telemarketing Representative, Inglewood.
“I think those who cheered when they heard the OJ Simpson verdict were flabbergasted when they heard the verdict on Brandy being voted off of Dancing With the Stars. Blacks stick together notwithstanding the fact that Brandy is a better dancer than Bristol,” Yolanda Morris, Paralegal, Inglewood.
“Voting Brandy off is a bunch of crap. Bristol cannot dance and has no rhythm,” Jeyoye Armstrong, RE Agent, Compton
“Brandy dazzled the audience and the judges. Bristol dazzled no one, except perhaps her supportive family members. It is sad that hard work and talent is trumped by race, politics or privilege,” T. Cole, Student, Inglewood.
“I think the program has become political. With defeated Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin’s supporters, Bristol, who has received some of the lowest scores from the judges, managed to win what has become a popularity contest,” Jaymeson Jiles, Actress, Los Angeles.
“Brandy’s tears, when she was voted off-of the program, represent the feelings of millions of Black Americans who rightfully believe that Brandy is a better dancer than Bristol. Too bad they did not vote in what has become a popularity contest,” Amanda Phillips, Medical Billing Clerk, Inglewood.
The consensus was Bristol Palin did not belong in the finals. Some say it appeared that once the judges voted, the rest was a mere popularity contest. For while Brandy is undoubtedly infinitely more popular that Bristol, she’s not more popular than Bristol’s mother.
According to Us Magazine, Brandy said, “I feel a lot better.”