March 7, 2002, - 7:42 am
By Debbie Schlussel
Why is Kmart bankrupt?
Maybe it has something to do with the showbiz types they hire for promotions–annoying loudmouths like Rosie O’Donnell. And now, race-pimp Shelton Jackson Lee a/k/a Spike Lee.
The down-and-out discounter’s repeated choice of obnoxious, politically correct spokespeople and their equally irritating political statements corresponds with the store chain’s decline.
And it’s probably no coincidence.
While Kmart’s main customers are Ma and Pa Kettle, in the 1990s Kmart chose in-your-face, single-mother lesbian Rosie O’Donnell as its television “spokesmodel.” There is hardly a personality more anathema to Kmart’s clientele. Rotund Rosie pushing Kathy Ireland swimwear and workout clothes? It didn’t quite work in achieving the hip image that profitable rival Target garnered?without a pesky, preachy, porcine celebrity.
The largest seller of rifles, Kmart finally got rid of Rosie, after noticeable customer backlash over her frequent pro-gun control rants and prominence in the Million–I mean, 85,000–Mom March diatribe.
But Kmart never learns, apparently.
Now the financially troubled retailer has chosen full-time racist bigot and part-time movie director/actor, Spike Lee, to direct its commercials in the hope that Lee’s ads will regain Kmart’s lost customer base.
But it will never work. Because there is only one thing Kmart and Lee have in common: bankruptcy.
But Kmart is only financially bankrupt. Only in the eyes of the court and its creditors is the company in trouble. The Big “K” can remake its fortune and regain its former command of the marketplace.
But Spike Lee is morally bankrupt. If the pro-reparations name of his “40 Acres and a Mule Filmworks” production company isn’t a strong hint, Lee thinks racism is the number one problem in America. What a coincidence: He’s America’s number one racist.
Lee’s race-hustling films are vile, portraying Whites and Jews in the worst light possible and showing them as human embodiments of the most outrageous stereotypes.
There is his 1989 “breakthrough” flick, “Do the Right Thing,” in which–predictably–Whites, especially Italians, are evil, unsympathetic characters, while Blacks are the downtrodden, oppressed victims. There are last year’s “Bamboozled” and 1990’s “Mo’ Better Blues” in which Jews are evil, unsympathetic, racist stereotypes. Ditto for 1996’s “Get on the Bus,” which celebrates Lee’s hero, racist loon Louis Farrakhan and his Million–or is that 300,000–Man March. A Jewish busdriver, who refuses to continue to drive because of Farrakhan’s blatant anti-Semitism, is the movie’s villain for doing so. And don’t forget “Malcolm X” (1992), which justifies the Black Islamic leader’s hatred of Whites and Jews.
About the only Lee film not political is his big 1999 dud, “Summer of Sam.” But even that is about Lee’s favorite kind of serial killer, a Jewish one. And that film’s portrayal of Italians and other Whites is completely bigoted.
When his “4 Little Girls” documentary–about White racists bombing a Black church in 1963–lost out to “The Long Way Home” for an Academy Award, Lee whined that it was a “Holocaust movie” and accused the Academy of failing to give Blacks due recognition. In 1998, Lee complained to AP that Michael Jackson had to change blatantly anti-Semitic lyrics to a song and apologize to Jews. He “was crucified!” Lee snorted.
To add insult to injury, viewers of Lee?s movies are consistently forced to endure his visage. Unlike real movie directors–satisfied to direct their masterpieces behind the camera–the vain, shameless self-promoter Lee insists on being an actor in most of his movies. Talk about craving attention. All of Lee’s movies are labeled “A Spike Lee Joint.” Yes, he seems to be smoking a lot of those.
But even with his “charming” image adorning his “films,” Spike Lee is a constant failure at the box office. Yet he repeatedly continues to receive the tremendous Hollywood respect of an emperor with no clothing, even though he is a racist no better than a white supremacist Klansman. On the rare occasion when he was called out for racism by one critic, he called him an “a-hole” and planned to begin his next movie inviting critics to “kiss [his] black a–.” A classy guy, Kmart’s new admaker.
No amount of mainstream emoluments and prestigious accoutrements–whether it is commercials for Kmart or Nike or thousand-dollar courtside seats at Knicks games at Madison Square Garden or his picture as a powerful Black political broker in this month’s Savoy Magazine, a swanky, hip Black publication–can redeem this street-style race-pimp.
It’s no coincidence that Lee–who has bought himself phony respectability–is now associated with the same outfit that features the Martha Stewart line of products. Stewart (real surname: Kostyra), of Polish descent, isn’t the New England blueblood she’s selling in her one-woman industry of homemaking snobbery. But she is a clever marketer, whose line of Preppie faux-finery, purports to buy the purchaser a phony aura of patrician rank.
But even Martha Stewart’s lace, embroidery, and buttered frosting can’t fake the real Spike Lee for Kmart. He is a racist bigot, plain and simple. And Kmart should know better than to do business with Lee. It’s nothing less than a giant insult to all of Kmart’s White, Italian, and Jewish customers. And it’s unacceptable.
In 1997, when pro-golfer Fuzzy Zoeller made comments perceived as racist–about Tiger Woods’ menu choices for the Master’s champions’ dinner–Kmart dumped him immediately. Yet, Kmart hypocritically grabbed master racist Spike Lee as its latest messenger.
To use one of his movie title morals, “Do the Right Thing,” Kmart: Dump Spike Lee.
Tags: 4 Little Girls, A Spike Lee Joint, Academy Award, actor, America, Bamboozled, bigot and part-time movie director/actor, Debbie Schlussel Why, Do the Right Thing, emperor, Fuzzy Zoeller, Get on the Bus, golfer, Kmart, Louis Farrakhan, Madison Square Garden, Malcolm X, Martha Stewart, messenger, Michael Jackson, Mo' Better Blues, New England, Nike, political broker, Rosie O'Donnell, Shelton Jackson Lee, Spike Lee, Summer of Sam, The Long Way Home, troubled retailer, USD