December 20, 2012

Tavis Smiley Battles with KFI Radio's Mo 'Kelly, MSNBC's Melissa Harris-Perry Attacks

Smiley Has Remained Silent on Both Issues, But Has Sent a 'Cease-and-Desist Letter to Kelly [AUDIO]

FROM MEDIA BISTRO - In his latest Journal-isms column, (in a post titled "Radio Host Pulls Smiley's Chain"), Richard Prince (puts together a timeline of events and) retraces some contentious recent chronology involving Tavis Smiley and KFI radio talk show host Mo ‘Kelly.

Kelly, who once worked for Smiley, has been accusing Smiley of using a national poverty-focused outreach tour as a means of personal grandstanding. The feud went public and got nastier last week when The Wave newspaper’s Betty Pleasant reported that Smiley had sent Kelly a cease-and-desist letter.

Kelly continued his campaign against Smiley’s “foolishness” via Roland Martin‘s segment on the Tom Joyner Morning Show. Smiley’s attorneys are claiming that Kelly’s actions are in violation of a confidentiality agreement the latter signed upon leaving Smiley’s employ in the fall of 2010. [LISTEN HERE]

'Tavis Sells Out Black People to Finance His Radio Program' According to MSNBC Host

Meanwhile MSNBC host Melissa Harris-Perry says Tavis Smiley sold out Blacks like the nurse in the Tuskegee Experiment. The Tuskegee Experiment included 600 black men (399 with Syphilis and 201 without) that were led down a road of deception by not only the federal government, but one of their own that they thought they could trust.

According to All Voices.com, on Melissa Harris-Perry’s show Sunday, she pointed out the similarities in Tavis Smiley to the nurse in the Tuskegee Experiment.  Apparently, Tavis had been in business with Wells Fargo to get African Americans and Hispanics enrolled in their fraudulent “wealth building” program that duped them into loans with higher rates based on “the color of their skin.”

Now, you must be wondering how Tavis plays into this scenario.  Well, according to the report, he was paid $4 million to give seminars in black communities that would persuade blacks to get involved in the programs that:

Tavis Smiley eventually cut ties with Wells Fargo.  The report states:

“I cut everything off with Wells Fargo,” Smiley declared. He said the move cost “a lot of money”; he would not say how much. Smiley said his relationship with Wells Fargo was a “package deal.” In return for the company helping to finance his radio show, he went on the road for Wells Fargo.

SOURCE EUR ThisNThat.com and AllVoices.com


  1. Unfortunately, this is another clear example of a failure in leadership. Here is the bright side. We, as black people, need to stop looking for leaders and become leaders ourselves and arm ourselves with knowledge. We all have the ability to lead in our communities.k

  2. http://hinterlandgazette.com/tag/tavis-smiley-cease-and-desist-letter

    If the above link to the letter is true, that has been circulating the Internet, it’s based on the time when Morris O’Kelly was employed at Tavis Smiley’s company from 2005-2010. He disclosed that then-Senator and now President Barack Obama called Tavis Smiley and his calls were not returned. Therefore, that would be the issue for the potential lawsuit- which was not publicly known. Like most corporations, such as AT&T, if you disclose proprietary and confidential information about an upcoming wireless device (for example) that will become available, an employee is subject to disciplinary action including termination. Employees have to sign and agree to those terms, because if they don’t – they won’t be hired.
    Also, many people have talked negatively about Tavis Smiley and others and they could just go around having their attorneys issue ‘Cease and Desist’ letters. I haven’t seen Morris O’Kelly address what is in the letter specifically that is circulating the Internet, regarding PAST private knowledge while he was employed there. The letter mentioned that they know that he has Freedom of Speech on information that is publicly available, but not private conversations/knowledge during his time of employment with Tavis Smiley’s company.


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