Nikki Haley denies Oprah interview with convicted murderer Susan Smith

Though she’s often viewed as the world’s most influential woman, Oprah Winfrey can’t always have her way.

South Carolina Gov. elect Nikki Haley said Thursday that she wouldn’t allow Winfrey to interview Susan Smith, a South Carolina woman sentenced to life in prison for murdering her two children in 1995.

Though Oprah says she’s been trying to schedule an interview with Smith for years and is merely attempting to have this done in her show’s final season, Haley is abiding by the state Department of Corrections’ policy of barring inmates from being interview.

Rob Godfrey, a spokesman for Haley, said in a recent statement that Haley’s decision to deny an interview does not reflect Haley’s views on Winfrey.

“While Gov.-elect Haley has great respect for Oprah, let’s be clear: Ms. Smith got enough press when she killed her two children and lied about it to the country,” Godfrey said. “South Carolina suffered enough from this tragedy, and we are now focused on the positives in our great state.”

In the April edition of Oprah Magazine, Winfrey explained her repeated efforts to try to interview Smith.

“Not because of the horrific-ness of what she did, but because she changed the way we look at parents in this country…When somebody comes forward and says, ‘My child is missing,’ we now suspect the parents first. She changed the paradigm,” Winfrey wrote.

  • truebearing

    Why doesn’t Oprah think black mothers “changed the paradigm” of parenting in this country? That is a far more importantstory because it is epidemic, not an anomaly.

    • riseabove

      My dear friend Truebearing, can’t you see that there’s some/much legitimacy to their indignation? Trust me when I say life for me as a white woman has been pretty difficult at times. I can’t even imagine what it would be like to get by with practically every advantage wiped away from birth. They are a proud, beautiful people. Maybe, just maybe we’re the ones who need to look deep inside ourselves to see when/where/if/why we’ve shared in making their lives a rickety old staircase?

      Do you know how it makes me feel when some arrogant SOB looks down his nose at me and acts like every lousy thing I’ve ever had to deal with is somehow my own fault? Probably not….and I’ll probably catch hell for even writing this but at least I won’t allow myself to be in the same category as “the unsympathetic”.

      Mother to Son

      Well, son, I’ll tell you:
      Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
      It’s had tacks in it,
      And splinters,
      And boards torn up,
      And places with no carpet on the floor—
      But all the time
      I’se been a-climbin’ on,
      And reachin’ landin’s,
      And turnin’ corners,
      And sometimes goin’ in the dark
      Where there ain’t been no light.
      So, boy, don’t you turn back.
      Don’t you set down on the steps.
      ‘Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
      Don’t you fall now—
      For I’se still goin’, honey,
      I’se still climbin’,
      And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.

      -Langston Hughes

  • Dot Vardsveen

    Oprah should find OJ and interview him. That would boost her ratings. Cheers for Gov. Haley..stick to your guns and keep Susan Smith out of public view.

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  • riseabove

    Even though I think she’s dead wrong about endorsing Obama and his agenda, Oprah’s done a lot of good. She’s empowered a lot of people to get or keep their lives together. She’s encouraged literacy with her book club, is a talented actress and she’s been a positive influence in our culture over the years.

    Anyone who lived in the Boston area in 1990 can attest to the fact that there’s still much to be desired when it comes to whites blaming crimes on ficticious black people. The Charles Stuart incident was handled very, very badly right from the get-go. The crime itself was atrocious and things got worse as the hours and days went on.

    I felt and still feel indignant for them and with them. I deeply empathize with their plight. But I just don’t understand why it’s so hard to unite, to come together as a people rather than drifting further and further to the left in some kind of massive social justice movement complete with the ridiculous idea of reparations that the vast majority can’t relate to. If we all moved toward the center we wouldn’t have such divisiveness now.

  • jiminga

    Go Nikki, go!

  • sully

    Good for Gov. Haley. Oprah lost me when she talked about “changing the paradigm”, the most hackneyed, obnoxious saying since “thinking out of the box”. Puh-leeze.

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  • Skepticus

    Winfrey just wants to publicly flog Smith for have the audacity to falsely accuse a black man for the murder of her children. Why doesn’t Winfrey interview Tawana Brawley?

    • UncleDon

      What a great comment….and right on the money! Except Tawana never went to jail for her foolishness….they never do.