Oprah Whines About Backlash Over Asking For Maui Wildfire Donations – ‘It’s Sad That We’re In This State In Our Country’
Last week, we reported that the billionaire Oprah Winfrey was being hit with backlash along with the multi-millionaire Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson for asking for donations to victims of the Maui wildfires despite only each giving $5 million themselves. Now, Winfrey has broken her silence to address this backlash for the first time, and let’s just say she’s not happy about it.
Oprah reacts to the backlash of her People’s Fund of Maui pic.twitter.com/v1Q0iEyY7N
— Malachi Maxey (@malachimaxeyusa) September 13, 2023
Winfrey Hit With Backlash
Daily Mail reported that Winfrey, 69, and Johnson, 52, posted a video to Instagram last week in which they asked fans to donate to the People’s Fund of Maui, saying that the money would be directly distributed to those affected by the fires in the historical town of Lahaina. Many were furious, however, when the pair revealed they’d each donated only $5 million, a small portion of their wealth given the fact that Winfrey reportedly has a net worth of $2.8 billion while Johnson is worth an estimated $800 million.
“A billionaire and a millionaire asking YOU to donate YOUR money?” one social media user commented, with another adding, “Girl you got some nerve asking us working class people who can barely afford to put food on the table for our families to donate…why don’t you ask your millionaire/billionaire buddies to help.”
“Math ain’t mathing with this one. You guy’s literally have so much money…. You can donate it and make it back within a year,” another user commented, with a fourth writing, “You have billions. You could donate $100 million and still be as wealthy as before donating. YOU give the money.”
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Winfrey Defends Herself
Winfrey went on “CBS Mornings” on Tuesday to defend herself while promoting her new book “Build the Life You Want: The Art and Science of Getting Happier.” When asked about the backlash that she and Johnson had been hit with, Winfrey admitted that it shocked her.
“Well, this is a really great point about being happier in the midst of an onslaught of being terrorized and vilified online,” Winfrey said. “I will say this. I came out of this experience with so much more compassion for young kids, because I was thinking, what if I didn’t really know who I am? It will take you out.”
“So all of the online attacks, lies, conspiracy theories, really took the focus off of what was the most important thing, which is the people of Maui,” she continued. “So this idea came about because I was on the ground, talking to lots of people, trying to figure out how I can best help.”
Winfrey explained that the son of CBS host Gayle King sent her an article about the fund that the country music legend Dolly Parton started to help victims of the 2017 fires in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.
“I thought, ‘Whoa! That’s the idea. Getting the money into the hands, directly into the hands of the people – set up the end structure for that,'” Winfrey recalled. “We thought, because both of us have given to charities our whole lives, that starting the fund with $10 million would be a great idea. We’ll do what Dolly did, get other people to give money and then we’ll put it directly into people’s bank accounts.”
not oprah trying to defend herself by dragging dolly parton into it she needs to shut up
— ren ミ☆ zara day (@mandorens) September 12, 2023
Winfrey Shocked By Backlash
Winfrey, who owns at least 13 properties on the Hawaiian islands, never saw the potential backlash coming.
“I was so excited. I was so excited about it, and then I got up the next morning, and I saw all of this vitriol, and I was, like, ‘Whoa, what happened here?'” she lamented. “This is what I want to say. I want to say that, in the beginning, so many people were calling, asking, ‘Where do we give our money to?’ So I thought, I’m going to give people a place to give it.”
“We’re going to create something and I still think it’s a really strong idea,” she continued. “Dolly Parton was right. Putting money directly in the hands of the people is a significant thing, and the model that has been created, I will say that as of today, 2,200 people have been cleared and verified, and those people are gonna get a notice from the People’s Fund of Maui and are gonna have the money put into their account.”
As for the hate that she’s received, Winfrey said that it made her “sad that we’re in this state in our country.”
Check out Winfrey’s full comments on this in the video below, with the relevant portion starting at around the 6:10 mark.
Unfortunately for Winfrey, this entire situation shows how out of touch she is with reality as a longtime member of the wealthy liberal elite. She can try to be like Dolly Parton all that she wants to, but in the end, she can’t hold a candle to the country music legend.
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