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Color of Change Tries to Kill the Show “All My Babies’ Mamas” by Boycotting Advertisers Too


by Dr. Boyce Watkins

Some of you may have seen the new Oxygen show, “All My Babies’ Mamas,” featuring the rapper Shawty Lo.  Shawty is being rewarded for spreading his seed to every corner of earth, creating 11 kids in 10 different households.  I recently wrote that the show is an insult to black families everywhere, but it’s not because I have a problem with a man having lots of kids.  I also don’t fault the brother for loving women, women are a good thing.

Where I do fault Shawty Lo and these women is for their decision to bring so many kids into the world without having the necessary emotional and financial resources to raise them in a healthy environment.   While Shawty defends himself by saying “I take care of my kids,” we have to remember that the term “taking care” is relative:  I personally find it hard to believe that a man can give the necessary time and resources to 11 kids in 10 households, even if he is a full-time parent (which Shawty Lo is not).  The leaked clips of him having trouble remembering the names of all of his children tells us pretty much everything we need to know.

It looks like the powerful organization Color of Change is getting involved in the battle to keep the show off the air.  The group is wisely targeting the financial fuel that was planned to keep the show afloat by going after Oxygen’s advertisers.   This is a smart move, since Oxygen might have initially felt that the negative publicity would be good for viewership.  As a Finance professor myself, I can say that  the only way to destroy a capitalist pig is to gut the piggy right in its bank account.

Says the petition:

 “Leaked online footage from the pilot showing Shawty Lo struggling to name his children — and one mother rebranding each woman with nicknames like “Fighter Baby Mama,” “Shady Baby Mama,” “Baby Mama from Hell” and “Wanna-Be-Bougie Baby Mama” — drew immediate criticism from Black people across the country.2 Despite the backlash, network executives remain intent on moving forward with the reality project.” 

There is no room for us to celebrate the dissolution of the black family in America.  The mass incarceration epidemic, conjoined with negative hip-hop financed by big, white corporations, has not only destroyed the core of who we are, it’s also led us to sing, dance and drink to the tune of our own self-destruction.   As a result, an entire generation of children are being born into a world where dysfunction is the norm, and discipline is a thing of the past.  This lack of discipline not only leads to even more of our children being transformed into commodities for the prison industrial complex, it also makes us willing partners in our own racial oppression.   White folks don’t have to do the hard work anymore, since we’re happy to do it ourselves.

I am happy to see that Color of Change is fighting back.  Someone needs to know that while none of us condemns the children being born into this odd situation, we don’t want our kids growing up looking forward to becoming Baby Mama number 11.  Oxygen should be ashamed and I hope Oprah Winfrey had nothing to do with this.

Dr. Boyce Watkins is a professor at Syracuse University and author of the book, “Commercialized Hip-Hop: The Gospel of Self Destruction.” To have Dr. Boyce commentary delivered to your email, please click here.

30 Responses to Color of Change Tries to Kill the Show “All My Babies’ Mamas” by Boycotting Advertisers Too

  1. Onesilverbac

    January 14, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    Does not deserve comment but I will do it anyway.

    The brother is Trifling, the “ladies” are a lot Worse.

    I have a few names for each, however since this is a public form I’ll let it slide.

  2. Truthbeliever

    January 14, 2013 at 11:20 am

    Wouldn’t watch it if I were bed-bound. also wouldn’t watch multiple other ridiculous TV shows, including, but not limited to, “Hoarders”, soap operas, etc. The choice is yours. Read a book, you simpletons.

  3. chrystal

    January 14, 2013 at 2:22 am

    Shawty Lo is diabetic. Its a known fact that diabetic men have weak or genetically damage sperm so some of these kids may not be a smart either.

  4. 'andra

    January 13, 2013 at 6:23 pm

    What about the whorish Kardashians? It’s ok for them to make millions with their out of wedlock, fornicating? I say take ALL of the reality shows off if you’re going to boycott one, boycott them all.

    • James Wilkerson

      January 13, 2013 at 9:48 pm

      Andra, one has nothing to do with the other, the Kardashians are non black and media has a lot of positive images to counter the absurdity of these people, while with blacks, the media portrays us in a mostly negative light.Shows like this only reinforces, negative stereo typical views of blacks to society.

  5. Chinee

    January 13, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    What’s the crime? Let’s clean up our own family and community first then perhaps we can reach out to others. Let Shawty Lo do his business and hopefully make plenty of money. Why don’t you go after the drug dealers in your community? And don’t forget the other rappers. Some of them are black and have a great influence on our kids. If we set a better example for kids in our own family and community, I don’t think we would have to worry about our kids being influenced by negative images on tv. The kids wouldn’t even watch that garbage and that would include most of the programs on tv and in the movies. We should direct our time and energy to causes that could make a difference.

    • Herman Hawkins Jr.

      January 13, 2013 at 6:29 pm

      What the problem is with these shows is that they feed racist stereotypes to the public who eats this garbage up. Many hate crimes come from people like George Zimmerman, many who get their information on blacks and others of color through media and judge all of us the same way. Many of us in the Black community feed off the garbage which extends from reality garbage to commercialized hip-hop, which only serves to exonerate black on black crime. YES this matters and YES we need to do something about that about ANYTHING that is self destructive.

      • James Wilkerson

        January 13, 2013 at 9:54 pm

        Very well stated my Brother

  6. Jennine Wilson

    January 13, 2013 at 2:09 pm

    Time to push back against all these anti-black producers, directors, and advertisers. Time to boycott television shows and advertisers who make us objects of ridicule. Time to demand that these shows be pulled. Time for us to change the way we are portrayed in the media.