by Yvette Carnell
When Toni Braxton appeared on VH1′s Behind the Music and accused Oprah of being “so frickin’ mean to me”, some observers dismissed Braxton and accused her of trying to draw attention away from her own financial management. But people forget that a source interviewed for NY Mag’s L.A. comes to New York confirmed in a 2001 article that Oprah planned to paint Toni Braxton as irresponsible prior to the interview:
Soon after, Toni Braxton filed for bankruptcy in the midst of a contract renegotiation. It looked bad for LaFace, because Braxton had sold more than 16 million records. When Braxton went on The Oprah Winfrey Show to discuss the bankruptcy, a source adds, Oprah called LaFace “and said, ‘Toni’s on my show today; she intends to make you guys look really bad. But I think it’s bullshit, so watch the show.’ ” Indeed, Winfrey scolded Braxton for excessive spending, saying, “I didn’t know Gucci made silverware.”
Toni Braxton quickly moved on and spoke kindly of L.A. Reid since, according to her, LaFace and Arista eventually “gave me a really nice pay raise.”
This doesn’t make Oprah the Wicked Witch of the West, nor does it deem Toni Braxton blameless, especially considering that Braxton has had financial struggles since her time with L.A. What I find troubling is how reflexively some in our community defend those who are highly regarded among us, such as Oprah and President Obama. It is important to remember that these people are human. They don’t wear halos, just as Braxton didn’t sprout horns the moment she sat on Oprah’s couch.
h/t: Son of Baldwin