3-1-15 – Byron Allen, the CEO of Entertainment Studios, continued his attacks on Al Sharpton in light of a discrimination lawsuit Allen and other African-American media owners filed against Comcast and Time Warner Cable. The suit alleges that despite calling itself a diverse company, Comcast and TWC only carry one black-owned channel, and that Sharpton is “a sham, undertaken to whitewash Comcast’s discriminatory business practices.”
More specifically, Allen contends that Comcast gave Sharpton a primetime TV show on MSNBC — “despite notoriously low ratings” — in exchange for Sharpton’s public support for Comcast on issues of diversity, an area where Allen says the company severely lacks.
Appearing on Reliable Sources Sunday morning, Allen told Brian Stelter that Sharpton does not speak for him or any black people, saying it is racist to even think that Sharpton is the “go-to person” for African-Americans. He also went after Sony for supposedly believing sitting down with Sharpton “negates” its employees’ racist emails uncovered last December about President Barack Obama.
Allen also alleged that AT&T spent more money on Sharpton’s 60th birthday party than they spent on Ebony Magazine. Companies like Walmart, Chrysler, and McDonalds do not do business with Allen and other African-Americans, he said, because Sharpton is the “least expensive negro” — a claim that Stelter immediately pounced on. But Allen went even further.
According to Allen, companies like Comcast have the following mentality (an assertion that Stelter did not challenge): “don’t do business with real African-American-owned companies, just give him 50,000 and a bucket of chicken and we’re good. We won’t have any problems with real African-American-owned media.” Allen went on to call Sharpton the “shakedown,” while he is the “legitimate entrepreneur” and a victim of Comcast’s “financial genocide.” His criticism, though, was not just reserved for Sharpton.
“President Obama has been bought and paid for. He has taken donations from Comcast. Comcast is his biggest contributor. AT&T is one of his biggest contributors. Listen, Obama, your own FTC is investigating AT&T for throttling. How can you even consider them to buy DirecTV when you’re suing them? Is it because you took donations? Yes, Obama. Don’t even think about letting them merge until they settle this lawsuit and that lawsuit … Obama has to do more.”
Allen’s final thought: “Obama, do the right thing.”