erace my tv, please: open letter #1
dear white men (and fellow bitches) running the world,
i know this may come as a bit of a surprise, but i'm writing to request that you remove all black people from television. seriously. listen, i know the n(iggas) a(pes) a(lligators) c(oons) and p(ossums) (mississippi burning swipe) gave you all hell for your fall television lineup a few years ago, but i'm here to take it back. i'd like black people removed from television until further notice.
why, you ask?
because everytime i turn on the tv and see a black person, they do black shit. why can't black people just be on t.v.? why they always gotta do black shit?
ok. i'm losing my shit. i need to slow down and tease out/put pressure on the phrase, 'black shit'. first: what is black shit? black shit--more formally known as niggafying (shout out saf)-- very crudely describes those behaviors some group of rich, straight, white men believe black people exhibit during waking hours. they sit in advertising boardrooms and come up with scenarios where black people niggafy their products. thus, whenever black people are on television (namely, commercials), they exhibit such behavior. this behavior includes beatboxing, dancing, complicated greetings that include incomprehensible handshakes, and excessive use of slang. now some may think terms like 'black shit' and 'niggafying/niggafication' are problematic. indeed, they are a bit ignorant, but purposely so. i mean, how ignorant must you be to present and/or accept this process as necessary for reaching 'urban' (meaning: nig) markets (and young, white suburban kid ones, too)?
one example of this involves a producer of some of the finer meat products known to humans, including bologna and hot dogs. this particular company has a very catchy jingle that involves spelling. in this commercial, groups of people (friends, parents and their kids, etc.) sing this very famous jingle. everybody stands in front of a yellow background and sings the damn song--except the black girls. can the black girls just the damn jingle? helllll no. they gotta, they must, they have to step to the jingle, thereby "remixing it" with a niggafied beat. (stepping, for those of you who don't know, is a form of dancing where persons make rhythms by stomping their feet, clapping their hands, and/or slapping other parts of their bodies, thereby creating a rhythm.) granted, black people often do this, i highlight a group of black people singing 'happy birthday' as an example. yet, why is it impertive for these girls to step in the commercial when no one else does? they didn't make the asian people in the commercial do 'asian shit,' did they? so why do the nigs have to do black shit?
as stated above, i am not suggsting that black people do not conduct themselves in such ways. hell no. nigs be on their nig shit. yet when we asked for representation, i believe we meant we wanted black people on tv living regular fucking lives. true, living as a black person in this country is in many ways fucked up, but i do not sing a negro spiritual every time shit gets hard (though i have been know to hum "go down, moses" while cleaning the house). i have never, EVER in my life greeted another black woman by calling her sistuh or sistuh girl. believe it or not, often black people just say smile and 'hi' to each other.
even animated black people be on their black shit:
'grrrrrl, where'd you get that fruit and walnut salad?'
'from mcdonald's, honeychile, and i'm lovin' it.'
such images remind me of a conversation traci and i were having concerning greeting cards several months ago. as i recall, we were both commenting (her more than me) about how we just can't get regular greeting cards with black people on it. you know, just a black baby in a tire with some big ol' sun glasses that says 'have a great day' on the inside and shit. nooooo. black cards must be niggafied: some red, black, and green, kente cloth bordered card with a bunch of niggas playing the drums with an inside message that reads something like, 'may the light of mother africa shine on you on your birthday.' wtf?
this, obviously, has perturbed me beyond sanity. i am therefore requesting that all black people be removed from television until further notice.
summer m., self-appointed (un)official voice of 'the race'
language alone protects us from the scariness of things with no names. language alone is meditation. ~toni morrison