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Roland Martin is in L.A. for this weekend’s 46th Annual NAACP Image Awards airing on TV One on Friday, February 6 at 8 p.m. He says that the Awards is an important honor to African-Americans due to the exclusion they can experience from mainstream award ceremonies like the Oscars.

One of the events Martin attended while in L.A. was the celebration of actor/author/comedian activist Dick Gregory who received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame this week. It took 14 years for Gregory’s star to come to pass, Martin says.

“Dick [Gregory] said, “I need y’all to understand I’m here today for black people. Black people paid $0.35 to come see me.” Gregory said that once Black support made him popular, he was moved downtown to where he became unaffordable for many.  “It reminded me what Monique said last year,” Martin continued.

“She said she treasured her Image Award more than her Oscar because it meant more. When we talk about black self-love we’re trying to chase something that isn’t. I literally had a brother tell me, ‘When you gone get you a real show, nothing against TV One but like on MSBNC or CNN’,” he said.

Martin says that we can’t truly evolve as a Black community until we begin to celebrate and appreciate our own. It’s the ‘white man’s ice is colder’ mentality and its one that Martin says we need to be aware of and reject.

“When we denigrate our own, when we see our own as being less than compared to something else,” he says,”People will see the Image Awards Friday and say why isn’t it on ABC or NBC or CBS instead of being proud that it’s 2015 and it’s on a Black [owned] cable network.

We have too many of our people who don’t love ourselves enough that we’re chasing something that we can’t have and when we have our own we see it as less than. Sometimes you’ve got to love yourself and appreciate your own.”

The 46th Annual NAACP Image Awards airs on TV One Friday at 8 p.m.

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Roland Martin On The NAACP Image Awards, Importance Of Black Self-Love  was originally published on