Brian Andreen Talk to Me: Race and Politics in Music
I very much enjoyed watching the movie Talk to Me in class. The sense of humor of Petey Green was very refreshing. The way in which Petey Green as he as he put it was â€œbeing realâ€? was very abrupt and direct, making him very entertaining to listen too. He would say exactly what he thought of people regardless of how powerful the person was or what people might think of what he said of them, regardless of the consequences. It was this quality that made Dewey admire him regardless of his other character flaws. Petey Green would never back down. When made to apologize instead of apologizing to the person he insulted, he instead apologized to the people he compared the person to.
Petey Green was very bitter against white people for their prejudice against blacks, but I do not believe that he was racist against them. He saw over and over again how blacks were abused by whites and taken advantage of and spoke out against these injustices: as he put it â€œkeeping it realâ€?. I think he put his sentiments well at his address on the daily show. It was not that he did not like white people but instead that â€œwhite people are not ready for a black person like meâ€?.
Petey Green actually did great thing for easing the tensions between whites and blacks, especially in the aftermath of Martin Luther King Juniorâ€™s death. He got back on the air after leaving work and spoke to relieve rage and prevent rioting, and was credited greatly for it as the man who restored order. I believe that the white people listening to him speak after the assassination gained respect for black people even against their prejudices.
I also got the impression from the movie that the person who Petey Green was on the air was nothing like the person he was on the inside. On the air he was a bold leader and could have gone straight to the top yet the person he was on the inside never changed from the ex-con he was when he got on the air. He could have been a great leader had he come to accept the fact that he truly could have been.
The article: Radio, the â€œNegro Marketâ€? and the Civil Rights Movement, seemed to be a good demonstration of why Petey Green was so successful. There are fifteen million African Americans in the United States and they were not well targeted by marketing. This need to reach the African-American consumer helped greatly to allow people of color such as Petey Green to get on the air by giving the producers and incentive to get over their racism.