Thursday, July 10, 2008

Rap Vs Oprah, Is She Black Enough?

Ludicrous, and 50 Cent, your taunts that you are not black enough are tired, and old.  Your music represents misogyny, and to expect a woman to support this is ridiculous.  Supporting the achievements of POC, should not come at the cost of the dignity of black women. If you have a platform that you are trying to promote, you are more than capable of getting your own show.

There are many things that I am critical of Oprah about, but to refer to her as a "sell out" because she refuses to support the denigration of black women is a power tactic that black men continually employ against black women every time we assert our right to human dignity.   I know that you are used to the booty shaking colluders, that beg to be in your videos, but surprise, surprise, there are black women in existence who refuse to degrade themselves for your acceptance, or approval.

This issue is essentially about power.  There is a lot of talk about racism in the black community, however seldom do conversations about the black male patriarchy occur.  Similarly to white men, black men have a vested interest in the oppression of women. WOC are expected to support their efforts to "uplift" the race irregardless of the ways in which it may create us as less than.   To follow blindly on this path would be to commit a form of gender suicide.  We are your mothers, sisters and daughters but that does not give you the right to exploit us for your financial gains.  To rise as a community we need to support each other equally...and  so I say to all of the rap artists out there who complain about not getting enough respect... if you want it, give it!


20 comments:

Danny said...

It is true that Oprah is free to have whoever she wants on her and has no obligation to have anyone on her show.

One point that comes up in the clip is the way that Oprah treats men. I don't watch a lot of Oprah but considering how she treated Mary Winkler it doesn't surprise me that she doesn't think highly of men.

Near the end of that clip one of the gentleman said that 50Cent should sit down and that he can't represent black america. The thing is 50Cent does represent a noticable portion of black america and only deciding to only talk about them but never to them could be seen as insulting. It doesnt necessarily have to be Oprah that talks to them (becuase she can choose her own guests) but expecting them to just sit down and shut up and then magically changing their ways is not going to happen.

Renee said...

@danny you openly admit to not watching a lot of Oprah but feel fine asserting that her treatment of men is horrible. Look Oprah has her issues but as far as how she treats the males that are on her show, she treats them with the same respect as she treats the female guests.

The thing is 50Cent does represent a noticable portion of black america
And this is a problem. The message that rappers like 50 cent and ludicrous put out is anti-woman. The only people they really represent are men that are intent on exploiting women. They have been told over and over again about the misogyny in rap and yet refuse to change or edit their behavior. I fail to see what more conversation on the issue is needed.

bluelinchpin said...

Arrrrgh, it annoys me when blacks sadly subscribe to the white idea that being black means you have to submit to this stupid stereotype. I may not like Oprah but she's her own person and I respect her for that.

Danny said...

@danny you openly admit to not watching a lot of Oprah but feel fine asserting that her treatment of men is horrible. Look Oprah has her issues but as far as how she treats the males that are on her show, she treats them with the same respect as she treats the female guests.

And I feel fine doing so because of the way she treats them on the occsations I have. And I mention Mary Winkler specifically because I still think she did show just to pander to the crowd that instantly believed Winkler despite the fact that the fact that she murdered the one person that could argue against her telling of how she was treated.

The only people they really represent are men that are intent on exploiting women.
Not true. Just like any other rapper that tells their story through their music there is more to them than exploiting women. Yes exploiting anyone is wrong but to just say that exploitation is all their about is unfair.

Renee said...

@danny
Not true. Just like any other rapper that tells their story through their music there is more to them than exploiting women. Yes exploiting anyone is wrong but to just say that exploitation is all their about is unfair.
Spoken from one who is not used to seeing his gender exploited in rap music.

Danny said...

Spoken from one who is not used to seeing his gender exploited in rap music.

For a second there you almost sound like you're accusing me of claiming that women are not exploited in music. And while the exploitation is not the same the frequent images of my gender being nothing but "playas",abusers, gangsters, hustlers, drug dealers and basically blemishes on the pretty face of society have been noticed.

Fact of the matter is there is more to rap and hip hop than the exploitaion of women. I never said women aren't exploited because despite the black male privilege you have assigned to me I can see it's there. And honestly its treament of women is part of the reason I don't listen to modern hip/hop and rap.

Renee said...

@danny I didn't assign black male privilege to you, you were simply born with it.

Ebony Intuition said...

"WOC are expected to support their efforts to "uplift" the race irregardless of the ways in which it may create us as less than. "

I like this quote because its true. We are always told who to support even if who we are supporting doesn't support us back. And im sick of it!!!

Danny said...

@danny I didn't assign black male privilege to you, you were simply born with it.

And yet despite my trying to get rid of said privilege (not to be confused with ignoring it or acting like it does not exist) you throw it in my face at every turn.

Renee said...

@Danny
You cannot get rid of privilege you can only change the way that you negotiate it. Btw stating you have privilege is not throwing it in your face.

Sally said...

It has always annoyed me when people criticize Oprah for not having rappers on her show.

First of all, Oprah doesn't owe them anything. They don't owe her anything.

Second, if Oprah has a problem with the way rappers represent black culture, then she shouldn't have them on the show. Having them on would be disingenuous.

Third, Oprah has every right to have a problem with rappers and the way they are put on pedestals and idolized. There's a problem when young black men aspire to be gangsters, rappers, etc. Now it's about who's been shot, who can win the fight, who has the most sex, etc. And the music executives are all too happy to continue that cycle.

I'm not saying there is something fundamentally wrong with rap music. I listen to some of it and really enjoy it.

The problem is what these (mostly) men have come to represent and how dangerous that is. It's a slippery slope, and Oprah doesn't want to go there.

Danny said...

You cannot get rid of privilege you can only change the way that you negotiate it.

Really? But in an ideal world in which the playing field is truly level (wages, sexism in the media, etc...) would that not be the loss of privilege due to the fact that no one is treating or is being treated a certain way.

Its my understanding that privilege entails unfair advantages, disadvantages, and assumptions based on religion, race, gender, etc... Once all those unfair advantages, disadvantages, and assumptions are no longer practiced would that not be would that not be the loss of privilege? Am I missing something?

And let me say thanks for despite the fact that I don't agree with you all the time you continue to talk to me in a respectful and civil tone. You are doing what a lot of other "feminist" sites are claiming but not delivering on. You could have very easily cried troll and kicked me to the curb but you didn't. Thanks.

Renee said...

Danny from our exchanges you are far from being a troll I don't always agree with you but I enjoy our exchanges. To grow as people we need to be able to listen to others and I will never just ban someone for disagreeing with me.

Its my understanding that privilege entails unfair advantages, disadvantages, and assumptions based on religion, race, gender, etc... Once all those unfair advantages, disadvantages, and assumptions are no longer practiced would that not be would that not be the loss of privilege? Am I missing something?

You are right if everything were equal and we lived in a utopia then people would not have privilege. Since this is not likely to happen in either of our lifetimes what we need to do is focus on negotiating privilege so that to the best of our ability we do not exploit others.

DiosaNegra1967 said...

ebony intuition: exact-a-mundo!

...don't you know the "golden rule" for black people?

if you are black and you don't subscribe to or tow the line as to what being "black" is....BLACK people will mock and deride you...famous or not. period. (just who came up with what "black" is...is debatable at best)

i'm so SICK of fiddy, luda, plies and the rest...and, NO they DON'T represent black america!

i wish KRS-1, kool moe dee, afrika bambaataa and the rest of the "godfathers" of hip-hop would just come and flat blast their sorry a**es into oblivion!

Roxie said...

Oprah does not speak negatively of men. Not at all.

I'm wondering at those "few" times you saw Oprah do that Danny. I mean, she's been on the air for over 20 years!

Most rappers (especially the most popular ones) do speak negatively of women (and homosexuals) and use degrading and misogynistic lyrics. Occasionally you get the "dear mama" song or something like "runaway" that LudaChris did with Mary J. a bit back, but over all, it's very negative.

The only current rapper i can listen to right now is LUPE FIASCO.

Danny said...

Most rappers (especially the most popular ones) do speak negatively of women (and homosexuals) and use degrading and misogynistic lyrics.

Very true and no one is denying it.

Occasionally you get the "dear mama" song or something like "runaway" that LudaChris did with Mary J. a bit back, but over all, it's very negative.

Occasionally nothing. You say that like the overwhelming majority of rap and hiphop has always been about degradation and that is not true. Today's rap and hiphop is drenched in negativity about everything subject you can think of but once upon a time that was not the case.


And you can wonder about those "few" times all you wish. It might not be fair to write her off on a few instances but that doesn't mean I'm supposed to just let it go either.

Roxie said...

Occasionally nothing. You say that like the overwhelming majority of rap and hiphop has always been about degradation and that is not true. Today's rap and hiphop is drenched in negativity about everything subject you can think of but once upon a time that was not the case.I do not "say that like the overwhelming majority of rap and hiphop has always been about degradation". As you quoted, I was talking about the more popular rappers. Please keep that in mind. No one here is disregarding the past of hip-hop, okay? Stop getting all hurt, I know from where and whence it came.

However, the subject isn't hip-hop in it's entirety nor about it's history, it's about current rappers and to pretend otherwise is disingenuous.

And you can wonder about those "few" times all you wish. It might not be fair to write her off on a few instances but that doesn't mean I'm supposed to just let it go either.
I'm not saying you should let it go. What I am saying is that there are 20+ yrs of shows and you should look at it through that perspective, instead of counting those "few times" as her ENTIRE view. That's not fair either.

Kara said...

well, 50 cent is absolutely wack. So his opinions don't matter. I believe Ludicris had a problem with Oprah because he felt she didn't respect his role in "Crash" since she didn't invite him but invited all or at least most of the other members of the ensemble cast. Now, if this is the case, that was really disrespectful of her. That would be letting her feelings towards his music be confused with his acting. With that said, i want to know if she has ever invited Ice Cube on her show.

Renee said...

I believe Ludicris had a problem with Oprah because he felt she didn't respect his role in "Crash" since she didn't invite him but invited all or at least most of the other members of the ensemble cast.
This is not the first time she invited the entire cast of a movie on her show. In the case of crash it was not just about promoting a movie it was about discussing racism and to do that properly you cannot do that from the point of view of a single person, or racial group. I actually watched that episode and from what I say she spoke to him respectfully despite his music.

Danny said...

Please keep that in mind. No one here is disregarding the past of hip-hop, okay? Stop getting all hurt, I know from where and whence it came.
Good to know you are aware of its past but who's getting hurt? Its just conversation.


I'm not saying you should let it go. What I am saying is that there are 20+ yrs of shows and you should look at it through that perspective, instead of counting those "few times" as her ENTIRE view. That's not fair either.

That is why while I don't watch her show I don't hold the opinion that her show should not exist or anything like that.