Media mogul and Entertainment Studios CEO Byron Allen unloaded on President Barack Obama over the weekend for not acting black enough.
“President Obama is, at this point, a white president in black face,” Allen, who is black, told TMZ.
“Black America would have done much better with a white president. You have let us down tremendously,” he continued.
The 53-year-old Allen, who has worked as a producer and talk show host, took Obama to task for publicly calling out the rioters and looters who descended on Baltimore last month after the death of Freddie Gray and for failing to improve conditions in the black community.
“I’m disappointed that President Obama called those young men out there in Baltimore ‘thugs,'” Allen told TMZ. “I’m not condoning violence, but I don’t think we should call them thugs because we’ve positioned them to fail, and the system has failed them.” (RELATED: Obama Refers To Baltimore Rioters As ‘Criminals And Thugs’)
“I say to President Obama, ‘You have to remember who you are. Don’t forget who you are.'”
“Check the numbers. Black people have fallen further behind under President Obama,” he continued. “We’re being murdered in the streets, we’re being murdered in the courtroom, we’re being murdered in the boardroom.”
“It’s OK to be the president of the United States and also be a black man.”
This is not the first time Allen has criticized Obama’s handling of race-related issues — nor is the first time that black leaders have accused him of not doing enough for the black community.
In an interview with The Daily Caller’s Patrick Howley in February, Allen criticized both Obama and civil rights leader Al Sharpton. (RELATED: Byron Allen Goes To War With Sharpton, Obama, Comcast For Future Of Black Media)
“President Obama, you control a couple billion dollars in advertising. What have you done to make sure African-American owned media is participating in government advertising?” Allen asked.
“We got more respect from President Clinton.”
Princeton University professor Cornell West, a former supporter of Obama’s, has become a sharp critic over the past several years. Referring to Obama during an interview with David Letterman in March, West said “Right now we live in an age of the sellouts.” (RELATED: Cornell West Goes Off On Obama: ‘We Live In The Age Of The Sellout’)