Attention Please America!

Last night Major Jackson, a poet I am fortunate to call a friend, was up for an NAACP Image award in Poetry. (The book in question, Hoops, is brilliant. Read it! No excuses.)

The event was televised for the first time ever on Fox, so once I had returned from an earlier commitment at the school, I tuned in. Of course Major had warned me the Literary Awards were unlikely to be filmed. No surprises there. I’m sure that the Poetry award has about the same status as the Best Credit Sequence in a Short Animated Documentary does at the Oscars. However, it was good to pick up the ambience of the event and see the glamorous people collect their awards. I hoped they might do a little summary of the minor awards at some point but no dice. I was impressed that Bono got the Chairman’s Award, although a little miffed that more coverage was given to Prince reading a poem about the environment than was given to the actual Poetry award, but no matter.

Here’s the thing though. As soon as the program was over I came online to try and find out who had won the Poetry Award, and there was NOTHING. Actually, last night there was nothing at all online to show that the NAACP Awards had even occurred–no headline news, no link from Fox or even from the NAACP website itself.

I felt sure I’d have more luck this morning, and indeed, there is now a news article available online. Notice I said ‘a’ news article. In fact, it would appear there is only one, although it has been widely syndicated. It’s a broadsweep piece, which means naturally no mention of the Poetry award. I hoped perhaps a short summary might have made it into the late edition of the Saturday New York Times, but I hoped wrong.

I finally got an email from Major himself this morning, telling me how fantastic the event was, but that Maya Angelou won.

Now listen up, America. I’m not into the Oscars much, but I do know that you couldn’t possibly have gone online late last Sunday night/Monday morning and NOT found a myriad of articles containing everything you needed to know. I’m sure that hundreds of eager Entertainment bloggers were poised at their keyboards typing in the winners even while they were still making their tearful acceptance speeches. I’m almost positive that the Monday papers contained a full listing of winners AND photos thereof.

So, don’t you think you ought to have paid a little more attention to what went on in Los Angeles last night? I don’t know. Anyone would think this was about race, or something…

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