Monday, September 10, 2007


ok, i'll finally expound at length on this situation with black people wanting to boycott vh1 because they have supposedly rejected a show featuring intelligent black women who are willing to date interracially. it's been going around on the internet for some time now. the logic here is that vh1 is racist because they're more than willing to show "flavor of love" and "charm school," which feature black women behaving badly, but they've supposedly said that "viewers are more interested in seeing black women in a ghetto role," so showing educated black women isn't something they want to do.

i can't help but think that if vh1 had actually decided to do the show they've purportedly rejected, then folks would be up in arms about this proposed show about black women dating non-black men, because people are tired of that whole black men and women can't get along stereotype. i can hear it now, "oh, so when you finally do put good black women on your network, they only get the spotlight if they choose white men over black men?" if it ain't one thing, it's another.

do i think vh1's position is righteous? certainly not. but i understand it. they're selling what sells. and something makes me question why vh1 wasn't boycotted when flavor of love and charm school got started. is it only in comparison to a show about educated black women that people can realize how tacky, trifling, and bad-for-our-collective-image their already existing shows are? vh1 is in the business of airing fluff. they've found their niche, and they're sticking to it. there is no requirement to balance out their programming when there are fi'tyleven other channels in folks' cable packages. i figure they're thinking, "you wanna see positive images? turn to a pbs documentary on the civil rights movement, or watch the autobiography of miss jane pittman or whatever they're showing on tvone now."

i don't expect fairness or balance or righteousness from vh1- why should i? we couldn't even get that from bob johnson. this market isn't driven by that. it's driven by who can grab the most eyes for those advertisements. that's why bob johnson is a rich man. i can't stand what he did with his network, but i can't knock his understanding of his business. he didn't make a network for us. he made a network for companies who wanted to advertise to us. vh1 is doing the same - grabbing attention, not changing the world or catering to our higher sensibilities.

cooning sells.

if we don't like that, then we should stop buying products from all the advertisers who sponsor cooning on all of tv and radio - not just vh1. we should stop celebrating people who make it a point to act a fool in the public eye, like karrine steffans, flavor flav, and 50 cent among others, just because they're black. folks become transfixed on every single train wreck aired on tv and radio and then have the nerve to cry foul when the media wants to capitalize on the (merited) perception that people like to watch foolishness? it's not them, it's us. americans, black and white and purple, patronize minstrel shows.

don't hate the playa, CHANGE the game.

note: i don't watch flavor of love or charm school, i don't own one 50 cent album, i don't watch bet, and i've not read ms. steffans' tawdry tales.