06 January 2006

What do Hip Hop videos REALLY say?

I just watched VH-1's "Hip Hop Video Exploitation."

It was interesting.

As a heterosexual Black man, a lot of today's hip-hop videos get my attention. You have these scantedly clad Sista's with bodies and faces that are sometimes beyond my wildest dreams, and they're just dancing and prancing around for my enjoyment. Well, mine and Snoop Dogg's, Nelly's, Chingy's and any number of other rappers.

Now, as a THINKING BLACK MAN, I find considerably less joy in the hip-hop video scene. The thinking Black Man (TTBM) sees a poor representation of Blacks and Black culture.
Most people who have never had dinner in a black home, or spent any significant time in a black neighborhood, or don't have any black friends - view music videos as a private window into black life and black culture. These people figure that all black men do is drink and dance and listen to music wear gold 'fangs' and other "bling". And, all that black women do is parade around half naked and get passed around from one black man to another with a smile and without a word.

Now surely anyone naive' enough to believe this image, isn't really worth worrying about - but while that may be the case, these stupid stereotypes have a way of trickling down and making this worse for other blacks, in the employment realm, in the social realm and eventually in the economic realm.

I hope that eventually, hip hop artists and producer's stop bullshitting themselves and the public about the desire for and value of these skin flick videos. It's bad enough that these people are so unimaginative and untalanted that all they can do is grab their crotches and drone on about their guns, their paper and their bitches. But to exploit our women in the process? Give me a break.

I also hope that the never ending stream of fyne Sista's will soon start demanding either better roles in videos or more clothes. While I will certainly miss the bikini clad Ki-Toy Johnson's, Melyssa Ford's and Candace Smith's, I think its far more important that we as black men stop exploiting our women and stop supporting brothers that do nothing more than promote violence, theft, thuggery and drug use - all to a heavy bass track.

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