Thursday, May 19, 2011

I recently wrote on the topic of entertainment and our fascinations with it. Entertainment in all its forms is mind-numbing to say the least. But what happens when this mind numbing aspect subconsciously perpetuates a certain ideology?

To my black actors out there in this world, I would like for you to explain to me something:

When, in the name of all things ghetto, did it become acceptable for you to put on a fat suit and play a black woman? Is this the image you want to perpetuate? The cliched overbearing, domineering black woman? Is that all you see when you look at your fellow sisters? Living in this world with preconceived notions towards African Americans should have prevented such an act to even occur. Tyler Perry, the Wayans brothers, Martin Lawrence, and Eddie Murphy, I have some words for ya'll……

There is a hell of a lot more to us than being black, loud, obnoxious, or just plain "Ghetto". We are doctors, lawyers, teachers, congress women, mothers, wives, sisters, daughters, nieces, aunties, and friends. We are more than our hair. We are more than our booty's. We are more than hip-hop and collard greens. We are more than these stigmas you are helping to perpetuate. We are a culture, a history, a people. We are one.

Putting on those suits, in all its humor and vulgarity, is the equivalent of putting on black-face. You, my fellow African American actors, are mocking us. You are belittling us. You are degrading us all at the sake of a little humor and some fast cash. You are modern day "Coons" playing modern day "Mammy's."

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Okay people, focus...

When I saw the movie trailers for Norbit, I could not believe my eyes. Was this all that Eddie could do? How does one come from Dream Girls, a positive and uplifting movie on the black experience, to one, which fully and wholeheartedly degrades black women and in essence castrates the black man? Why is it that in so many of Eddie's movies, his main character is always in an unintentional love triangle between the busted, heifer, dark-skinned Black woman and the ultra-feminine, obviously-more desired light-skinned Black woman? For the love of god, WHY?

And now, for the love of all things crack, they are making a Big Momma's House TWO. Kill me now.

Eddie and Martin's depictions are pinning our people against our own people. I have seen this happen not only in the black community, but in many other cultures as well. The lighter your skin, the skinnier you are, the better, or more apealing you are. This is the way of the world and it isn't right. You are pinning women against men, Eddie. This is a public service announcement to you:


When these movies are shipped to other countries what do you think they must think of us? We, according to the media's depiction, are gang banging, drug dealing, baggy jeans wearing, video ho-ing, loud-mouthed, ignorant, domineering people. Is that what we are? Is that what image you want to have projected? We as a people deserve better. To be honest, this movie isn't even the half of it. The media continues to perpetuate this insane image of African Americans and African Americans are in turn allowing it to be perpetuated! Did we not just get over Michael Richards tirade and Paris Hilton's nigga speak?

Now, granted, these movies are made to be humorous. Who can deny the Nutty Professor ("Hercules, Hercules!")? Diary of a Mad Black Woman was another great movie as well. But, Big Mommas House? The Klumps? Madeia's Family Reunion? White Chicks with the Wayans brothers? BIG MOMMA'S HOUSE TWO! What are we laughing at the expense of? There is more to the black community than dressing up black men to play the utmost horrible stereotype towards black women. Is there nothing else the black man in the media can fulfill? I'm sorry, but this genre is played the fuck out.

Ask Dave Chapelle about this. He will school you on the difference between laughing with us and laughing in spite of us. Oh, and this isn't about "lightening up" and "taking a joke." Dave Chapelle is hilarious and I'd like to think I have a pretty bomb sense of humor. I know this movie was prob funny and has some aspects to it that make it a "comedy." I am also wise enough to know that this issue goes deeper, much deeper than having a few chuckles.

This movie and those like it not only touch on the aspects of racial stigmatism but sexism as well. Actually, this movie is FILLED with "isms:"


This movie is a comedy at the expense of a stereotyped black woman. Point. Blank. Period. Oh, and Will Smith, don't even think about it.

Thank you for allowing me to post this public service announcement. We are now tuning into our regularly scheduled program:


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