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Readers react to ‘Apprentice’ finale

Was it racist of Trump to ask Randal to share title?
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Thursday night, the fourth edition of "The Apprentice" came to an end, but the controversy has just begun.

Randal was a star from the beginning, and it was no surprise when Donald Trump offered him the job as his latest Apprentice. What was a little surprising was what happened next: As he had hinted he'd do all night long, Trump seemed ready to hire both Rebecca and Randal for different jobs in his organization. Yet when he asked Randal for his opinion, the winner quickly stated that he felt there should be only one Apprentice. And in a most un-Trumplike move, the billionaire went along with his newest hire's decision.

Everyone can agree that's what happened. But no one can agree on anything else. Many think race was a factor: Randal is Trump's first African-American "Apprentice," and some thought Trump was racially biased in asking him to not be the only "Apprentice" when the other winners, who were all white, held the title alone. Some pointed out that the first finale was also between a white and an African-American contender, yet when a white man, Bill, won, he wasn't asked his opinion about also hiring African-American Kwame.

Others thought Randal, so classy and admirable all season, simply got selfish at the end, and that he should have agreed to also let Rebecca have an "Apprentice" job. And still others thought, race or no race, Randal was overwhelmingly more qualified than 24-year-old Rebecca, and deserved the job where she did not.

Many pointed out that putting that decision on Randal's shoulders was unfair of Trump.

Here are some of your thoughts.

TRUMP WAS WRONG“Donald Trump, have you lost your mind as well as control of your own television program? Letting Randall make your decision for you was so wrong."    --D and G

RANDAL STOOD UP FOR HIMSELF“I think Randal was the clear winner. The fact that he wants to run a billion-dollar company is in line with Trump’s plans. I didn’t mind that Randal didn’t want Rebecca to be hired. In business you can’t always be nice. You have to stand up for yourself once in a while in order to survive. It’s not like Randal stepped on Rebecca to win. I believe Randal doesn’t mind if Rebecca gets hired, but just not on the show.”    --Rachel

NEGATIVE FEELING“I really liked Randal and was fine with his winning, up until he denied Rebecca her chance. After being so ethical and a gentleman throughout the whole process, he gave in to ego and selfishness in the end. ... I probably will watch the show again, but another ending like that will kill it for me. I had a very negative feeling after the finale.”    --Della

WATERING DOWN THE REWARD WAS RACIST“Randal was man enough to fight for his title of THE Apprentice — not one of the two apprentices. And then there’s the issue that white people -- not having experienced racism will never be able to think of. But let me tell you what ALL black people are thinking today: Why, when finally Donald hires a black man (Kwame was just as classy and just as good -- remember?) would he decide that this is the time to water down the reward and make it a two-fer. Let the black man have his day if he deserves it. I’m a woman, and I’m saying that if Rebecca was better no one could have twisted Donald’s arm to prevent him from hiring her.”    --M

SPELLING TEST“How do you spell jerk? R-A-N-D-A-L! Having a fist full of degrees doesn’t make one “intelligent”.”    --Gary

TRUMP WAS TESTING RANDAL"Why should the rules and policy of the show be changed at the last minute. It has always been the “Apprentice”, with one person winning the spoils. What is interesting to me is that this is the first African-American to win and coincidentally the first time that Trump was trying to change the rules and hire two apprentices. It would have been the selfless and gentlemanly thing to do for Randal to let Trump hire Rebecca, however doing so would “dilute” his achievement and recognition...and we know this is the only reason they want to be on this show. Trump did not overrule Randal’s opinion, because this was a test to see if Randal was “New York” tough enough. And also Trump knew that Randal, however selfish he may have been, was right. I will continue to watch the show."    --Anthony

YAHOO SHOULD HIRE REBECCA“Randal is outstanding but showed a character weakness in being self-centered and unwilling to share his good fortune. Trump should still hire Rebecca before Yahoo gets her. She is a leader, tough and can handle pressure amazingly.”    --Thomas

REBECCA COULDN’T COMPARE TO RANDAL“The winner was clear. Randal’s flawless winning record was unrivalled. His diligence achieved results. His leadership inspired cutthroat adversaries to join forces and win. He’s got the business savvy, the brains and the respect of his peers. Trump made an excellent decision to hire Randal. However I was shocked that Trump would even consider Rebecca to be comparable to Randal! Previous runner-ups had much more outstanding records than Rebecca yet were fired without question. Rebecca’s record at the Apprentice was mediocre at best. Trump’s question was insulting to Randal’s abilities and achievements and it robbed Randal of his chance to enjoy his well-deserved win.”    --C