Two years ago, The Root began a community service project intended to uplift the voices of some of our most loyal readers. Sure, we could have simply said “Thank you” and sent you on your merry way, but we wanted to do something more interactive, more personal.
Thus, the Clapback Mailbag.
Every Friday, we rummage through emails, tweets, comments and direct messages to discover what’s really on the hearts and minds of our readers. Over the years, we came to realize that our base is much like Donald Trump’s base—disaffected white people, conspiracy theorists and black people who just want to be contrarians.
The weekly Clapback Mailbag has survived guest hosts, death threats and harassment (all three of which came from former Deputy Managing Editor Yesha Callahan, the Mailbag’s original editor). And although the Clapback Mailbag is never among our most popular posts of the week, the Mailbag faithful will not hesitate to email or tweet if they think Friday might pass without their weekly dose of snark.
We have never missed a week.
Every writer and editor at The Root has contributed to the Mailbag in some form or another—whether it was by submitting hate mail they got or being mentioned by an angry tweeter. But the hard-working, talented people on our video team has never had the opportunity to give back to our community via the mailbag.
This will serve as a re-introduction to our new readers as well as a summary of some of our favorite pieces of mail. Ladies, gentlemen and Wypipo, we present to you, the very first video Clapback Mailbag.