Wendy Williams, Boyce Watkins to discuss Oprah Winfrey's relationship with 50 Cent, Ice Cube with Paula Zahn on CNN

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Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse Professor and author of the best-selling book "What if George Bush were a Black Man?" appeared on CNN's "Paula Zahn Now" with VH-1 Radio Show host Wendy Williams on Tuesday, December 5, 2006. The show discussed the controversial relationship between Oprah Winfrey and rappers such as Fifty Cent, Ludacris and Ice Cube.

What if George Bush were a Black Man?

Dr. Boyce Watkins, Syracuse Professor and author of the best-selling book "What if George Bush were a Black Man?" appeared on CNN's "Paula Zahn Now" with Vh-1 Radio Show host Wendy Williams on Tuesday, December 5, 2006. The show discussed the controversial relationship between Oprah Winfrey and rappers such as Fifty Cent, Ludacris and Ice Cube.

There was significant controversy when a number of hip-hop stars protested Oprah's policy of not booking rappers on her show. The rapper Ice Cube stated, "She's had damn rapists, child molesters and lying authors on her show. And if I'm not a rags-to-riches story for her, who is?" Additionally, other artists feel that Oprah has a bias against them as a group. In GQ magazine, Ludacris called Oprah "unfair" and said that she edited his comments (on her show) and lectured him about his music.

Dr. Watkins argues that Oprah's issues with hard-core rappers such as Ludacris, Fifty Cent and Ice Cube may stem from issues that Oprah has with black men in general. "If you have a Nobel Prize next to your Oscar, next to your Grammy, you are in good with Oprah. But after that, you have to be on the down low, beat your wife or do something terrible to get her attention. Rank and file black men doing positive things in their communities tend to be ignored."

Dr. Watkins argues that much of Winfrey's challenging relationship with black men may stem from her abusive childhood. "She was abused by a black man as a child, and the fact that she is such an open soul leaves those issues for the world to see," says Watkins, who has made regular appearances on shows such as Quite Frankly with Stephen A. Smith (ESPN), Hannity & Colmes, and many others.

Watkins does, however, note that rappers such as Ice Cube and Ludacris should not complain about not being invited on her show. "Oprah is a champion for women's rights, and you write songs degrading women," says Watkins, who is the Business and Finance editor for Inspire Magazine. "Why in the world would you think that she would want you on her show anyway? You have to take responsibility for the statements you make."

Dr. Boyce Watkins is the author of "What if George Bush were a Black Man?" and a Professor of Finance at Syracuse University. For more information, please visit http://www.blackmanbush.com. For interviews, please call Lawrence at (502) 640-8155.

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