Hey fam,

I’m late doing the recap of our last appearance on NPR’s News & Notes along with Desmond Burton of Afronerd and Lauren Williams of Stereohyped.

Here is the audio right on NPR’s website

Desmond, Lauren and I were all in the New York studio, so we could share eye contact and head nods. They are both great bloggers and cool people I hope to work with again. Unfortunately, we didn’t get to the most interesting topics on the docket that day, principally the Enough is Enough campaign in which citizens are protesting outside the homes of BET and Viacom executives to register their complaints about damaging images in much of commercial hip hop.

Having prepared to talk on the subject, I just want to throw out some bulleted thoughts I had on the campaign right here. And before getting to that, I owe a debt of gratitude to What About Our Daughters. Not only have they got a strong stance on the issue, but they do mad primary research (having live blogged the House hip hop hearings), and the Black Women’s Roundtable podcast is one of my favorite. It’s a bit long (coming in at nearly two hours), but so worth it.

Quick thoughts:

  • Todd Boyd (an apologist for the industry) is terrible. He tells people to simply turn off their televisions if they don’t like what they see. More on his perspective in the NY Times and on NPR
  • It is not as simple as “turning off your TV” or “choosing” to watch something else. It’s not a fair competition. On the one hand you have billion dollar Viacom with its lawyers and lobbyists. On the other hand you have black women and black people victimized by these negative images. When black women command a $28B company with access to legislators and media outlets across the country, then we can talk about “choice”
  • I don’t have a problem with people protesting at these executives’ homes. After all, the executives are poisoning our homes by pumping in such damaging filth. To be truly fair, people would have to find a way to protest directly inside these executives minds, since that is where the damage of mass media imagery is most heavily inflicted
  • The imagery promoted on BET is a symptom of a centralized, profit-driven and ultimately corrupt media environment. Let’s not lose the fact that who and what gets aired is intricately linked to who owns the broadcast and network outlets, in other words, media ownership.
  • I do disagree with the campaign about the Read a Book video, but I’ve already blogged and commented enough about my take on that piece of satire.

Just a few points I had to get off me chest!

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