Commentary — 18 December 2012

Audio HERE!

Mo’Kelly’s formal statement:
I want to be absolutely clear about how and why we’ve come to this moment; why this has become a national story.  Here are some facts and some perspective.  When Tom Joyner blogged that Dr. West was Tavis’ “sidepiece“…I said nothing publicly.  When Steve Harvey called Tavis and Dr. West “Uncle Toms” I had no public comment.  When Najee Ali picketed and protested at Smiley’s building (both times) in 2012 I had no public comment, on either occasion.  Even more recently (Sunday), when MSNBC’s Melissa Harris Perry likened Tavis to the Black nurse during the Tuskegee Syphilis Experiment, I neither commented nor highlighted it.

All of the aforementioned were low-hanging fruit and I said nothing.

I could have easily piggy-backed on any or all of those if the goal were to simply snipe at him.  There have never been any opportunistic slams of Tavis on my part…ever.  I don’t support any name-calling and I’ve never wavered from the issues.  Tavis has released a number of books on poverty, and his story about “Failing Up”  I’ve said nothing. I haven’t engaged in tearing down anything and all things “Tavis.”  There is no such history.

Tavis has appeared on FOX News programs more times this calendar year than I have made any public comments about him in 2 + years since leaving his employ.

It is what it is…make of it what you will.

I tell the truth and go from there.  My speaking out in reference to the flawed premise of the “Budweiser SuperFest Poverty Concert Tour” or NOT speaking out previously had nothing to do with any non-disclosure agreement.  This was a conscious decision born of conscience and well-within my rights.

(Do note, Tavis has offered nothing in response to my critique to rebut or debunk the authenticity of my arguments, which is his right but deserves highlighting.)

If Tavis had an issue with my public remarks, the reasonable response would have been picking up the phone and calling me.  Instead he chose to call his lawyer.  He could have easily engaged in constructive dialogue and offered a substantive defense of his upcoming poverty forum in this contest of ideas…but chose another route.

It is what it is…make of it what you will.

This is far from personal on my part.  If there is animosity, it’s not from me.  If someone is “disgruntled” it CLEARLY is not me for all the ignored opportunities listed above.

The facts are clearly on my side in this discussion and my work is public and available for all to review.  I wish Tavis Smiley well in his endeavors and a Merry Christmas.  He will continue his work and I will continue to dwell comfortably within my purpose and profession.

I have moved on…so should he.

Thank you for your TREMENDOUS support in the recent days and weeks.  You guys and gals are absolutely wonderful.

Now, on to the next…

The Mo’Kelly Report is a syndicated politics and entertainment journal. Visit for the latest from Mr. Mo’Kelly. Tune into The Mo’Kelly Show Saturdays from 6-8pm PDT on KFI AM640 and XM 166 Saturdays and Sundays from 8pm-9pm PST. Contact Mo’Kelly at

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Morris W. O’Kelly (Mo’Kelly) is a columnist, radio and television commentator. Visit for the latest from Mr. Mo’Kelly. He is heard weekends from 6-8pm on KFI AM640 in Los Angeles. The program is available via the iHeartRadio app and for download on iTunes and all podcasting apps.

Contact Mo’Kelly: @mrmokelly

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