Jiggle Jiggle Pop Pop at the Grammy's
Jiggle jiggle pop pop
Jiggle jiggle pop pop
All eyes on her sex
She owns her raw, her honey-dipped,
Her nasty delicious
Is this female empowerment or where empowerment goes to die?
Who decides what urban culture is? Cardi B was an ignorant stripper from the Bronx that got her 15 minutes of fame as a hilarious reality star from Love & Hip Hop. The cult of celebrity in this country is taking hold of sane people and getting them to drink the Kool Aid. Apparently, record executives saw her popularity and profit potential. The rest is history, that we all were able to witness at the Grammy’s last Sunday.
I’m not riding any moral high horse, but we can all put on our “thinking caps” right now. It’s ok to elevate our taste just a little. Our girls are watching us. My 8-year-old daughter and I were watching the Grammy’s. I decided to be open-minded and give her a little taste of what some of her friends had been talking about so she wasn’t totally clueless. I immediately regretted it, and my daughter just looked confused when I flipped the channel. Was I supposed to say, “Well honey, these ladies are really strong women and they own their bodies? Isn’t it wonderful that they have the freedom to do whatever they want?”
The argument is that when a woman is owning her sexuality in a dominant and unapologetic way, it’s progressive and refreshing. Fans are quick to say “WAP” represents female empowerment. A woman, as opposed to a male, owning her sexuality as profit is power. Another example would be celebrities and sex tapes that catapult them to infamous status as they then use their names to create a lucrative brand.
Sex sells and intelligence or talent often has nothing to do with it. Little girls are not part of this empowerment claim. They are a victim of it. These young kids can’t stay away from what’s freely on the radio. They’ll twerk and shake, pretending to twirl on a stripper’s pole if parents are not paying attention. Kids eat up popular culture. I think the misogyny loop continues as girls start owning this “WAP” mentality to get male attention and gifts. Without the male gaze, does this mentality even work.
Does Cardi B know about the beauty that words can invoke? I wonder if she read Toni Morrison and Maya Angelou or listened to the lyrics of Nina Simone or Billie Holiday. Does she understand the prolific power of words, and subtle poetic metaphors that can melt hearts or win wars?
When performers create purely for profit while normalizing the recruitment of a new generation of little strippers that save money for butt lifts and not education, they destroy our culture. They destroy the integrity of black culture, and so much that we’ve worked for as women.
There are hundreds of talented female hip hop or neo-soul artists that deserve air time to connect to the masses. As consumers, we can all do more to support them.
Since this is Women’s History Month, comment and share/link an amazing black female artist that could take the place of some of this ridiculousness. We are all waiting and ready for elevated talent.