- The Washington Times - Sunday, January 4, 2015

In what appeared to be a snub to Al Sharpton, Oprah Winfrey recently argued that demonstrators in New York City and Ferguson lack the same motivation and leadership of the civil rights movement of the 1960s.

“I think it’s wonderful to march and to protest, and it’s wonderful to see all across the country people doing it,” Ms. Winfrey told People magazine while promoting her upcoming movie “Selma” in the magazine’s new issue.

“What I’m looking for is some kind of leadership to come out of this to say, ‘This is what we want. This is what has to change, and these are the steps that we need to take to make these changes, and this is what we’re willing to do to get it,’” she said.

Ms. Winfrey produced “Selma,” set to release Friday, which covers the 1965 protests in Alabama over black voting rights. She lauded the civil rights movement for demonstrating “the strategic, peaceful intention required when you want real change.”

Protesters tweeted outrage at Ms. Winfrey and accused her of being out of touch and elitist, The Washington Post reported.

“Once again a Black ‘celebrity’ shows just how out of touch they are. So, while @oprah searches for an outdated leadership model, #weworkin,” wrote one Twitter user.

“You have been PAINFULLY quiet, @Oprah, until this movie,” wrote another.

“If @Oprah doesn’t see ‘leadership’ in Ferguson, it’s cuz she’s not really looking. It’s grass-roots – she has to do work to see the teams,” wrote another.

Other Twitter users argued that the movement does have leadership with Al Sharpton, who has led multiple rallies in Ferguson and New York City, as well as rallied nationwide to protest police brutality and racial discrimination.

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