While building her empire early on, media mogul Cathy Hughes lost her house and her car after taking out a loan with a 28% interest rate to purchase a Washington D.C. radio station.
In an interview with The Root, Cathy Hughes said the following about losing her house and her car in the earlier 80s: “I was like Nikki Giovanni in her poem- she didn’t know she was poor until she got money. She was happy. Me too. I remember I was somewhere in Detroit and they introduced me and they talked about when I was homeless. I was offended. Afterwards I said, ‘Excuse me, I was never homeless.’ The lady was so apologetic, she was like, ‘I’m so sorry. I thought you had lost your house and your car and lived in the station.’ I said, ‘Yes.’ She said, ‘I think that qualifies you as being homeless.’
I have never dealt with the fact that I was homeless. I never called it that…I didn’t see it as me being homeless or impoverished because I was working on a goal, which was to build this media company, to build this radio station.”
AMARA LA NEGRA: I was homeless at some point in my life, and a lot of people don’t know that.
HOLLYWOOD UNLOCKED: Not sleeping on the street?
AMARA LA NEGRA: Well, sleeping in my car for 2 months outside of McDonalds… And I would go there because it’s 24 hours; and wash up with wipies and stuff, and leave out of the car looking fabulous, and you would never know that I’m struggling; I’m so hungry. You would never know.
HOLLYWOOD UNLOCKED: It takes a lot of courage to admit that though…
AMARA LA NEGRA: You know what? I do it too because I want to be real. I want to be honest about it.
My life hasn’t always been perfect. I don’t do it because I want anybody to feel pity for me. It’s my truth, and all these things build the character and the woman I am today.
On April 5, 2018, New York City Mayor, Bill De Blasio and his wife Chirlaine McCray, appeared on The Breakfast Club, a New York based morning radio show. The syndicated radio show is popular among New Yorkers, and the youth demographic. Their interviews have garnered millions of views on You Tube.
During the almost hour-long Breakfast Club interview, the mayor and the first lady talked politics, and about a bevy of issues affecting New Yorkers. I watched the You Tube video of the interview on the edge of my seat, hoping to hear the mayor address the city’s record-breaking homelessness issue. However, during the interview, the word “homeless” never came up. I was surprised that the issue was not mentioned at all.
All any New Yorker has to do is ride the subway, especially at night, to get a good visual on how out of control the homelessness problem is in New York City. In addition to this, news sources across the country are constantly reporting on New York City’s current homeless problem surpassing the levels of homelessness during The Great Depression.
The Breakfast Club morning show is a huge platform in New York. It was an opportunity for the mayor to speak to a large audience of New Yorkers about the things that concern them daily. Why was the issue of homelessness COMPLETELY ignored?
The mayor and the first lady, and the radio show’s three hosts didn’t mention NYC’s housing crisis, the record-breaking homeless statistics, or gentrification once during the entire interview. The word “housing” was never even uttered.
I was sitting there watching like:
How does the city’s mayor go on arguably one of the city’s biggest communication platforms and fail to address such an important topic?
-The Homeless New Yorker