“I can’t believe that your school counselors played this for you kids,” I said as I watched Willow swish her braids around like, well a whip. Bewildered my daughter asked me one question “Why Mommy?” As I looked at her I saw that she was nervous—the kind of nervous a kid gets when they think that their parents think that they did something wrong. “Honey, I’m not mad at you. It’s just that this song, this song is just…” I couldn’t find the word but my daughter filled in the blank for me “Inappropriate?”
“Yes honey, it’s inappropriate.” And with that I switched the song off. For those of you who have continued reading to figure out what the hell has made me so mad it’s exactly this. Here’s my gripe. There are plenty of parents that run around regulating most of the music that kids listen to, blaming the artists that make the music as well profane and underhanded—one example is Eminem, he’s had this problem for like, forever. But what gets me is that those same parents run out and get there kids albums by Britney Spears, or Christina Aguilera, or Miley Cyrus or whoever the hell is popular these days. And it leaves me to wonder if these parents see that this type of music has an influence on their kids too? When I was a kid in the ’80, I was raised on Rap music—yet my mother tried to expose me to different things or rather different artists like Luther Vandross, Teddy Pendergrass, Sam Cooke, and many, many others. To be honest I hated it (back then). Rap was the truth and there was nothing else to it. There are two points I’m making here. The first is that acts like Public Enemy, Erick B and Rakim, Mc Lyte, Queen Latifah, (the list goes on and on) taught me how to be a “conscious sista” (by now if you haven’t guessed it I am black!) and secondly, my mom gave me an appreciation of music by exposing me to different things. So how does this relate to me being pissed off at Willow and her whipping-ass hair? Well, it wasn’t Willow I was mad at per say. It’s more like the adults she’s surrounded by. As much as my music influenced me way back when, I was one thing as a kid—I was a MF’ing kid!!!!!!!!! Nothing more, nothing less. When I overheard Willow’s lyric I mistook her for at least a twelve year old. Sadly, she’s nine. Okay, I’ll repeat that, NINE. Nine years old! What in the hell does she know about “haters,” and “parties” and “keeping her head up?” When being interviewed by Ryan Seacrest, she said that the song was about “being yourself.” My question is WHO ARE YOU AT NINE YEARS OLD? I don’t know the answer the question “Who am I?” and I’m THIRTY! Which is the new twenty—so I’m told. But I digress. What I am getting at is the following while the world is busy making “Willow Smiths,” and “Justin Biebers,” into the next “Michael Jacksons” when do these kids have time to have a childhood? I mean let’s face it for all of Michael’s genius from start to finish in the end, caused him nothing but drama, pain and a pill addiction that killed him (yeah I’m saying fame ain’t really worth SH*T! Not when it’s going to cost you so much that you’ll never get back like you childhood innocence).
On Thursday November 4th, 6-10pm, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc presents:
"Voices Unbroken" Open Mic
Join the Deltas for an evening of enlightenment and creativity. In the spirit of self-expression, Voices Unbroken was created to address the natural human instinct to tell one's personal story & reflect on issues affecting us in our communities.
Hoffman Lounge (NAC Building)
The City College of New York,
160 Convent Avenue
New York, NY 10031.
If you wish to perform or would like to RSVP please email: firstname.lastname@example.org