Thursday, July 29, 2010

President Obama and the “Cool Black Man” Persona: Roundtable

From President Obama's college years
Ever since the primaries, many black people accused him of not being black enough, but they were quickly silenced (consider this season’s episode of The Boondocks that focused on the black community’s silencing of black critics of President Obama). Now, after the President’s cool response to the oil spill, we even have some white liberals (i.e. Bill Maher) accusing him of not being black enough. These accusations have one thing in common: they stem from a disapproval of Obama’s coolness, or, in other words, his refusal or inability to display anger. Do we want him to get heated, for a change? What's the problem with his cool approach? Why is this an important topic of discussion in terms of race

I think the Black male is often associated with violence, and it's difficult for people to see a mixed race President (named Barack Hussein Obama) who doesn't live up to that age-old stereotype. I think one of our readers mentioned in an earlier post how people like to categorize one another. Clearly, people don't know what to make of him 'cause he is cool. Just think about that strut across the lawn at Pennsylvania Ave. and the calmness he exuded during the debates that led him to the presidency. He's a BAD man! But no matter what he does, it won't be right in the eyes of everyone else. Long after he's out of office, people will still be talking. Guess what, they aren't the President either! So why should it matter? To me, Obama is doing just what he should be doing, which is all he absolutely can do in his power.

You're right, Ms. Mashari, he IS a "BAD" man (shut yo mouth!). But, see the problem is, he's not bad in that Shaft/Gangsta/Samuel L. Jackson sort of way. Obama ain't the kind of negro that's going to snap all of a sudden on the Republicans and be like, "Look, muthaf@%kers, I don said it once and I ain't saying it twice! Ya'll gon pass this health care bill!" I admit, even I am guilty of wanting Obama to get angry once in a while, to display some emotion, to be a little less cerebral and a little more emotional. (It's not because I have no other way of understanding black masculinity, however. It's more so because I understand people in general better when I see them display emotion. People who are always always level-headed, no matter what the crisis, simply vex me; I feel like I can never really understand such a person).

White America (and maybe even black America) is used to the angry black man image I just mentioned: white Americans both love it and fear it. Unfortunately, the worse thing President Obama could do politically is get angry, because it's a guarantee he'll lose some much-needed support from whites (while he might regain some steadily waning support from brown and black folks in this country). It's a guarantee that you'll have white America shouting several things:

1) "That's right! That's right!," white liberals will shout, and from then on expect the angry Obama to make appearances occasionally, especially in favor of their causes.

2) "That's just incredibly unprofessional and not a good look for our country," white moderates will groan, from then on expecting the man to never ever exhibit the slightest emotion, for even the slightest emotion will hark back to angry Obama,

3) "See, I told you they are all angry and violent," white conservatives will say, and proceed to search for violent past behavior from Obama's youth in order to further invalidate his humanity and turn him into a stereotype of black masculinity

Sigh. The man is in a precarious situation. If I were him, I would choose my moments carefully, but I would not choose to remain always completely calm so as to avoid the stereotype. Ultimately, being stereotyped as a black person is unavoidable. Any wise person knows that, and I would hope that he knows it. Look, his wife merely said she was for once proud to be an American, when he won the primaries, and they painted her as a fist-in-the-air-afro-wearing black panther sort (I wish) and Michelle couldn't be further from that.

Is it just me...or aren't there more important things at the White House (and in the world) to worry about?? Clinton was known for his charm, Bush was known for his, well...lack of intelligence, and now, Obama is known for being “cool.” What's the big deal? I happen to appreciate and have mad respect for anyone who can remain tactful under extreme scrutiny and pressure...

Although Obama DOES seem to keep his cool, I wouldn't expect anything otherwise from a person with his leadership responsibility of ANY race...

Though it WOULD be funny to me if he gave the masses what they were looking for one day!

LOL, Miss Berneta! I remind you that Obama's campaign slogan was a "Change We Can Believe In," and that change meant a new attitude, a new swag, and a "NEW BAD." Think about it, he's mixed race and was raised by his Caucasian mother, having been exposed to a multitude of cultures and raised in Hawaii and overseas until middle school or so, and people really want to see Obama go Black Dynamite a time or two. Yeah, right! It seems like some of us signed up for the change, but weren't quite ready for just what the change meant. A cool dude that just happens to be brown skinned, wears his trousers a little high but looks just dandy doing it, and remains calm under a world of pressure. Miss Qui, like you, I'm enamored by the man we call Mr. President and I applaud him for what LL Cool J calls "doin' it well.

I don’t know about the you guys... but I am kinda tired of these age old stereotypes just because he’s a black man... now you’re telling me that there are white liberals saying "he’s not black enough." That just sounds way too ignorant to me. What is Not Black Enough?? Exactly? How do you act "black" ( or as i use to ask as a child... " how so you act a color?")? Just because he’s African American does that mean he has to be Angry, short tempered? Etc, etc? To me, this really just boils down to ignorance. Personally, I like a strong yet cool demeanor, which is how Obama comes across to me. There are other ways of showing strength, and it’s not always blowing up and showing emotion all the time... actually... he probably displays more strength in NOT letting his emotions get the best of him.

Miss Berneta

I agree with your sentiments entirely, Mz. Kewe. Although, I have to say that whenever I hear a black person indignantly ask, "How do you act black?" in debates like this, I automatically shake my head. Lol. No matter how bourgie we all are, we ALL know what it means when someone says you're acting black (and, likewise, that you're acting white). Let's not even pretend.

But like you said, Mz. Kewe, there are other ways of showing strength. Personally, I think all the hubbub about his temperament distracts us from some of the real work (for better or for worse) that President Obama is doing and also neglecting to do.

Positive stuff he's done: health care bill (albeit it's a watered-down version);
executive order to protect queer individuals’ right to see their partner when/if his/her partner is hospitalized; loan forgiveness for individuals who have dedicated 10 years to public service; extending unemployment benefits.

Negatives (stuff he's done or failed to do): hasn't repealed the anti-prostitution clause in our HIV/AIDS funding program (
which basically prevents any organization that supports sex workers from received funding from the program); the huge corporate bailouts; merit-based teacher's program; took abortion coverage out of the health care bill; he put Elena Kagan, yet another Harvard (inexperienced) law professor, one of his buddies, on the Supreme court (now, all but one of the justices is a Harvard or Yale graduate).

I could go on and on with this second list for sure. But all this…this is the stuff we should be talking about. And the whole focus on Obama's temperament is a mere distraction that's working in his and his administration's favor and not in our, the people's, favor.

Mz. Kewe

Do we really all know the "what acting black or white” is? Even if so...does it not change the ignorance, given the fact that defining what is black and what is white varies from each individual to the next? For me, I feel that characteristics of an African American male would be Pride, egotistical, protector and strong. I, personally, never associated angry or temperamental behavior exclusively to a black man. (Actually, I hear it more associated with black women.) Now these are my personal opinions about their characteristics, not to say I'm right or not to say I'm wrong, but this goes to show that not everyone has the same idea of how a person of a certain race should act. If I were to judge a black man and say that he's "not acting black" according to MY belief of what a black man should act like, that's total ignorance because his beliefs may differ from mine. What do these white liberal believe characteristic of a black man should be? Do all of them agree? I'm sure we could find some individuals out there that would say " oh yea... he's definitely a “n*66a" just because he does have a cool calm demeanor. I heard an interview he did for a radio show in NY while he was campaigning and one of the hosts asked jokingly " so Mr Obama, do you still have sex with your wife?" And Obama replied jokingly as well: " as for my wife, that's none of your business" and all the hosts of the show laughed and said "he IS a BLACK MAN Y'ALL!" So, according to their definition... Obama meets it. I know I'm rambling and probably over stressing my point (as usual) but the fact is everyone’s definition of how a certain race of people acts varies from person to person, so in essence saying someone isn't acting the way they should according to what race they are IS ignorance.

What is your take on this topic?

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Black and Unwanted: Prejudice and Stereotypes in Bold Letters

By GuestBug Brittany

If you live in the state of Arkansas, specifically, Little Rock, North Little Rock, or the Pine Bluff area, you may have noticed a new billboard has popped up in high traffic areas. A photo of a Black (African American) baby, blended into a solid black background, sets a somber tone. What catches one off guard is the text. In big gold letters it reads, “Black & Unwanted”; below that in smaller letters, “Too Many”.

The “Black and Unwanted” billboards in Arkansas are sponsored by the nonprofit group, Arkansas Right to Life. Recently, local news stations (such as Fox 16 and Today’s THV) have covered community reactions to the signs, which have began to garner controversy. However, the signs are not the brain child of ARL. In fact, the signs began going up in the state of Georgia by the Radiance Foundation. According to ARL and the site, the ads are targeted toward the Black community because it has a high rate of abortion despite being the minority group. The billboards are an integral part of a movement to bring attention to the rate of abortions in the Black community.

When one delves deeper into the site, there are statistics everywhere. But none of them seem to support the message of the billboards. Instead, they seem to provide basic facts and figures without explanations and connections. The site includes chart after chart, divided by race in relation to the annual percentages. Most charts are based on the 2008 Arkansas statistics, which show White Americans as the primary recipients of abortions, having approximately 58% of the 4,789 abortions documented. So, does this data confirm what the ads are targeting? To really heat it up, why are they targeted at Blacks? Who is behind the ads?

Background: The Radiance Foundation, was cofounded by Ryan Bomberger. His accolades include his time advocating for adoption and foster care, mentoring and other community projects. Bomberger also has an Emmy for Creative Production. There is also Catherine Davis, Tufts University Magna Cum Laude, activist for “Operation Outrage”, a group that “educates Georgians about the holocaustic impact abortion has had on the Black community”. Both contacts are Black and appear to be pro-life, based on the information they are provide on the site.

Whether the founders of the movement are black or not is almost irrelevant. Their campaign has a targeted audience for a hot topic that is bringing attention to the current generations of the black community. It is obviously doing just that. Still there is a boldness that doesn’t seem justified.

What makes the signs controversial lies on the surface and deep within the black community. The initial response is that the wording, black and unwanted, rubs the reader the wrong way. The words spark an offensive reaction, whether for or against it. It is also odd that the sponsoring group,, also has another ad, “Endangered Species” that is not displayed (to date) in Arkansas. This raises the question of whose perception is more important, the actual black community OR those who pay for the billboards.

Another response is that the wording is playing on the fears of others in the black community, who have for years, believed that planned parenting clinics provide ways to create population control. Ironically, one of the signs in Little Rock is about two blocks away from a planned parenting clinic (University and 12th street). Then, there is the deeply rooted taboo and stigma associated with abortions in the black community. Abortion has always been a very strong subject that you just do not bring up in a black household, regardless of how liberal it may be. It is one of those skeletons in the closet that comes out only when let out.

Personally, I think the wording works against the message (despite the statistics). “Unwanted” seems to carry the subliminal message that “black” is unwanted, a belief that has been rooted in perceptions of the black community since it came about. Sidenote: Black has been associated with bad, evil, disliked, forbidden, and exotic since cultures developed language. Some scholars believe that Africans are black because they are the descendants of a cursed race. If you remember your history lessons, in psychological experiments in the 50s and 60s, black children would pick the white doll as the prettiest, despite their own color. Fast forwarding to the modern time period, think of all the cries during Katrina (including Kayne’s infamous anti-Bush comment) in which media and advocates called foul on the treatment of blacks. So to say that Black is Unwanted is almost a blatant show of prejudice, discrimination, disrespect, and so many other forms of it.

The question that arises from this type of media is whether the black community will be open to the discussions that may stem from it. The black community has been stereotyped as a group that has opinions but are not willing to address them on a public scale. Yes, there have been marches. Yes, there are groups who advocate for black rights. However, the issue of billboard that states “black and unwanted” is something that should spark smaller discussions in the community—to address those taboo issues which we continue to avoid. While the sign itself seems to cry for attention (which it has garnered), maybe it is time to use this material to have healthy debates on some of the other issues within the black community.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

"Back to the Future"

The Prelude

They say hindsight is 20/20, but in my few years of living, experiences have afforded me with clear vision on a few matters of life. One thing I am passionate about is ethics and fair treatment among all people, but I am particularly concerned with the African American race because well…let’s face it, I’m black.

Here recently, I have been especially observant and aware of subconscious attitudes and behaviors in America that I believe stem directly from the shameful stain of slavery. It is inane to minimize the significant effect the American enslavement of African Americans that lasted for hundreds of years has had (and still continues to have), and even more senseless to limit its effects to the mindsets and outcomes of only one race.

Over the next few months, I will begin a dialogue with you...a multi-part series, if you will, that will cover several aspects of the this topic from varying perspectives. My intent is not to complain, shame, or lay blame – but, rather, to present some realities and from them, collectively and positively more toward the future.

Until then, I welcome your comments, experiences, thoughts, and questions...

The acknowledgement of our weakness is the first step in repairing our
loss.” – Thomas Kempis

Contact me at:

Thursday, July 15, 2010

21st Century Dating and the Issue of Label Phobia

You and So-and-So have hung out numerous times, on walks, at movies, at dinners in swanky and not-so-swanky restaurants (and So-and-So always insists on paying). After a few “dates” you finally give in, say, “Well, hell,” and you have sex. It has been a couple of months, and there have been several repeated sexual occurrences. While you may or may not be completely interested in So-and-So, you’re also not the casual sex kind of person. You are probably at least a little interested in seeing where it can go. No one has mentioned the big “R” (whisper: relationship). Although, you did ask one time about a month or so into it all, “So, hey, what is this about?” So-and-So responded in some roundabout, inarticulately evasive manner, of which all you remember hearing is, “I like you a lot. I like being with you.” Now, you are left wondering, “What the f*#@?”

I call this scenario, “An Encounter with 21st Century Label Phobia.” The notion of label phobia is pretty self-explanatory: it describes the intense fear of or aversion to labels, specifically labeling as it relates to the world of romance. (This is related to but shouldn't be confused with what is popularly called "commitment phobia," which describes a general fear of commitment. In label phobia, fear is directed toward labels such as "relationship," "dating," etc. While these labels implicate some level of commitment, I think label phobia stems from not only a fear of commitment but from a general fear of categorization, a mindset that is very characteristic of postmodern 21st century culture.) One could suggest that So-and-So is not label phobic at all but simply a slow mover, trying to take his/her time. Or maybe just your typical jerk. Both of those might be true. But let’s just assume I am right, for a moment. How does this label phobia affect our dating lives? Is this new attitude an improvement or a significant problem in our dating lives?

To the last question, I’d say it’s a little of both, and to the first question I’d say it’s doing a real number on our self-esteem (and I don't mean that in a good way).

In my own life, I’ve found that labels are inescapable, sometimes burdensome and sometimes useful or even empowering. For instance, I can’t escape the labels of African-American (or black), woman, bisexual, Southerner. There’s almost no point in trying to ignore them, in trying to exist as just a human being. I don’t have that luxury of trying to go through the world as just a human being when the rest of world will always see me as black and female for sure and treat me accordingly. As such, I’ve learned to embrace such labels and find power in them.

Avoiding labels in the world of romance is just as futile and impossible as avoiding them in other aspects of our lives. No matter how much So-and-So doesn’t like labeling his/her love life, he/she will eventually come into conflict with a lover who doesn’t share his/her disdain for labels. The reality is that human beings love labels; we need them, in the world of romance and elsewhere. Eventually, if two people (you and So-and-So) have went on dates, talked intimately, had sex, one of the two people (if not both) is going to want to know where he/she stands in the situation. Labels tell us where we stand. They help us understand how we are being valued and viewed by others. And, let’s be honest, our personal sense of self or identity is totally wrapped up in how others value and view us.

Sadly, I’ve noticed that a lot of twenty-somethings (as well as some thirty-somethings I’ve met) harbor a strong dislike of labels, refusing to understand the basic value of those labels to many, if not most, people’s sense of self. Nevertheless, a fundamental disconnect occurs during scenarios like the one described above. When a person seeks a label during such moments, he/she really is seeking out your opinion of him/her, and your refusal to deliver that in the form of a label comes off as a real diss, rather or not that’s how you meant it. Label phobic folks can help prevent these kinds of problems by being straight up in the beginning, before things get intimate, before wasting the person’s time. If you don’t want a label, a relationship or a commitment, just say so before the person gets attached.

Quite honestly, I am tired of running into men and women alike who refuse to label their affairs. If we have a scenario like the one mentioned, I can only interpret the refusal to label as a refusal to commit. (We can get into a huge discussion about what it means to commit. Here, I only want you to understand it as a basic promise to respect the person by refusing to sleep with or pursue other people while you are with said person.) So-and-So’s desire for sex with the person, while at the same time refusing to commit signifies a lack of respect. In this world of disease, the greatest way that one can show respect for a lover is by promising to be monogamous while with that person. But I’ll stop here, before I get off topic.

With all this said, I am mostly curious about why so many people are opposed to labeling their romantic affairs. What is gained and at what or whose expense? How has this issue, if it is one, played out in your love life?

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Why RayRay Gets the Girl...

By GuestBugs Brilliance and CeeNice

Lately, I have been hearing an increase in complaints from men about “nice guys” finishing last. For some reason, they believe that being the bad guy, or loser, or in some cases a total douche, is what women really want. Especially, the independent woman that has become increasingly popular, as desirable mates, thanks to the lovely Ms. Obama. Granted my sample of men is small, but I like the topic so we’ll go with it. For this one, I solicited the help of the Bestest– CeeNice. Be sure to click some of the links that highlighted throughout the blog.

My girls and I are probably just like you -- mostly independent women who are working their way up the career ladder.

We dream of finding the man of our dreams, yet for some reason we haven’t found him. Instead of passing the time alone, some of us date men we know aren’t good for us. The most infamous, as well as the subject of this post, is RayRay.
RayRay is generally the in-between-man, someone who you date or sleep with from time to time, but have no realistic expectation of building a relationship. CeeNice and I have dated our share of RayRays­—men who were clearly not anywhere near our level financially, emotionally, spiritually, academically or intellectually.

In any case, people always wonder why a woman of our caliber would date RayRay in the first place. In fact, I’ve wondered that myself.

So we spent about an hour jotting down the pros and cons of RayRay. Surprisingly, we found that on the outside RayRay actually has some strong points.

Below are our findings. Remember these are just for fun, so don’t get offended:
1) RayRay ALWAYS hollers EVEN when he shouldn’t—Homeless, bucktooth, or wearing yesterday’s clothes, nothing but God could stop RayRay from hollering…nothing at all. RayRay figures if he hollers at ten women at least one will bite. The sad part is, he’s right. RayRay essentially has nothing to lose and he knows it.
2) RayRay is a Professional Pipe Layer—Yes we said it. If he can’t take you out to a dinner or a movie, at the bare minimum he provides good to great sex. He temporarily replaces our B.O.B., Battery Operated Boyfriend, and sometimes you need that.
3) RayRay is there when you need him—No need to coordinate schedules with this dude. Call him anytime day or night and he will be there. He also gets lost when you don’t want him any longer.
4) Despite his flaws he’s smart—He can hold a conversation, watches the news, and has relevant opinions. He’s also street smart, and you often feel safe around him.
5) He knows what he has—RayRay thinks you’re wonderful. Makes you feel like you’re the queen of the hood. He’s proud of your accomplishments and tries his best to treat you accordingly. Even if he does fall short.
On a serious tip:
RayRays come around during a time in our lives where we’re experiencing a dry spell. He just shows up on those days when we’re especially lonely and maybe a little desperate. When guys wonder how we end up with “losers” sometimes it’s simply because he hollered.

It feels good to have a guy be proud of your accomplishments. When a guy like RayRay says he can’t believe he’s talking to someone of your status it makes some of us feel good.

Overall RayRay situations rarely work. At some point you realize that he’s where he’s going to be emotionally, physically, intellectually, academically, and professionally for the rest of his life. If you want more for yourself then you will soon find yourself ready to move on.

As for the guys—If you’re a good guy with your stuff together then I encourage you to get out there and ask women out. RayRay does it without fear. You should too. In fact, a lot of us have been waiting for you our whole lives.

Well we’re done, so feel free to debate, and share your own RayRay stories in the comment section below.

Credits: photo #1: jonfeinstein creative commons photo stream.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Thank Me Later

Actor/Rapper Aubrey Graham (better known as Drake of Lil' Wayne's Young Money Ent.) recently released his first full-length album titled, “Thank Me Later.” Despite our country's slumped economy and high unemployment rates, more than a few of us made it to Best Buy, Radio Shack, Circuit City, or hit up iTunes to cop Drizzy's latest music. Thanks to you, you, you, and you the album debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. With only three weeks in, Thank Me Later is still on the Billboard's Top 10 countdown. On behalf of Drake, a good friend of mine in my head, I'd like to thank you for your support.

Most of you know where I'm going with this, but some of you might wonder just what this has to do with personal finance. While I can't knock Drake's hustle 'cause it is STUPENDOUS, I can say a lot of young adults' lack a hustle or if they've got one, it's more than weak. Why do I say this? For starters, most young adults rarely seek guidance or use resources because we know it all or think we do. As a result, a bunch of us are floundering around and pretending to have it all together in the process when we clearly DON'T. Well, I'm ringing the alarm like Beyonce, and it's time to wake the hell up. Yeah, I said it. Now join me in class for lesson #2 for young strivers!

Young Money
I'm moving pass the music, so I can really school you today. Young Money isn't just an entertainment group or recording label; there's a personal finance web magazine that I adore with the same name. From advice on checking and savings accounts to career tips, suggestions on how to reduce your debt, entrepreneurship, and investing, this magazine has got you and me covered. I can't help but say, "Young Mula, baby" in my best Weezy voice whenever I log on 'cause I know that's where I'm headed by reading this magazine.

More Resources
  • What's the Dealio? Comparison shop for just about ERRthing and get discount codes at this website and others like Pronto, PriceGrabber, and RetailMeNot. Don't forget sites like Bankrate where you can find the best checking, savings, mortgage, car, and credit card rates among tons of other financial 411. I personally like to look for rates every six months or so to ensure I'm getting the highest interest possible on my savings.
  • Get government assistance, and no, I don't mean food stamps! Check out the government's way of supporting financial literacy with the FDIC's Money Smart finance program or the Financial Literacy and Education Commission's website. Both sites provide FREE guidance for managing and planning our financial futures whether we're in college, unemployed, single/married/divorced, starting a business, buying a home, or adopting a baby.
  • Save on cable by watching TV online at your favorite network's website, Fancast, Hulu, or Netflix. Watch PBS' Your Life Your Money episodes on the web, play games, or access a budget calculator, glossary, and other tools that'll help you get on financial track.
  • Read magazines? Well, Maghound offers reduced price subscriptions on all the best magazine titles. Get three magazines for just $4.95 per month; that's three magazines for the newsstand price of one! I stay up on all things money by ordering Kiplinger's, Money, and Black Enterprise from my friends at Maghound.
  • Be in the know, and order your FREE Annual Credit Report today. I suggest you review your report closely for any discrepancies and dispute them as soon as possible. You can also order your scores from each of the credit bureaus or at a site called MyFICO, one of my good friend's Suze Orman suggests. If you find it hard to sift through all the information on a credit report, some of you may like's FREE credit report card. The site pulls information from your credit file and gives you a letter grade. I hope we're all aiming for an A+!
  • Cut down your student loan debt with retail therapy. Yeah, I'm telling you to spend and save in the process. With Sallie Mae's Upromise, you can save by shopping at retailers in-store or online, dining out at the hottest restaurants, purchasing gas, lodging a number of hotels from the W Hotel to the Holiday Inn, or by taking brief surveys at e-Rewards. Guess what? It's FREE!
  • Get your hustle on and find your next gig online at QuietAgent where you can hunt for jobs anonymously. Be included before being excluded because of your race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnic name, or that hideous tattoo of your baby daddy or baby momma's name.
  • Still got questions? Seek the advice of a professional like the personal banker at your local credit union, a certified financial planner, a mentor, or maybe even a life coach like Kandice of Helping You Live the Good Life in Real Life.
In short, lesson #2 for young strivers:
To earn money, you've gotta learn money (and the resources available to you). Here, I've given you just a handful to get you started...for this, you can Thank Me Later! Class is dismissed.

Questions to Think About:

  1. How would you rate your hustle and personal finances on a scale of 1 to 10?
  2. Do you make use of resources and financial tools to get ahead? If so, what are those? If not, why?
Leave your comments below.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

That’s Just ma Baby Daddy

You know……usually, you know how there’s like……a popular song right? And so popular that people start using the catch phrase for a while? For example, the song “Show Stoppers” by Danity Kane; every girl in the club started to claim to be a so called show-stopper. Every dude that was in love was a Bug-A-Boo (Destiny’s Child) and at one point, girls were referred to as Pigeons and all men who didn’t have a job or car were Scrubs. However, most of these phrases tend to wear out their welcome and die off pretty quickly. Well, all but a few ones, such as Baby Daddy or Baby Momma, seem to stand the test of time and are still used as frequently today as they were back in 96 or 97 when that particular song came out. In fact, it probably means more now because now that we are older… some of us may be considered baby mommas or daddies.

Honestly, I don’t like this particular term. It’s just too ghetto and I find it sickening that people have just rolled over and accepted being a baby momma or baby daddy; along with many other phrases, I’m not saying that I’ve never used terms like this prior, however, now that I am older and am learning better, I plan on doing better, for starters, erasing this from my vocabulary from this point on. My hope is that people will one day abandon this mindset as it is in no way shape or form uplifting especially in the African American community. What ever happened to giving a parent of your children a little more respect? Respect enough to at least say “mother or father of my child” or something along the lines of that? Or how about government names….? What ever happened to those??? It’s gotten so bad that some people even have the audacity to approach you and say things to the nature of “ hey aren’t you such and such baby momma?” (this actually happens to a friend of mine often) this is just absurd to me.

Since when has it been okay to be a Hot Ghetto Mess? Last time I checked, it was repulsive, looked down upon and laughed at. Remember how back in the days, music used to reflect something so totally different? Take rap groups like NWA ( Ice Cube, Eazy- Z, Dr Dre and others) used to talk about living and growing up in the ghetto, but their message wasn’t so glamorous and certainly wasn’t anything of a laughing matter. Now we have music glorifying things we really shouldn’t, such as a single mother or father depicted as a baby momma or baby daddy. I understand that sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying, but come on now. We have to draw the line somewhere. Seriously, who really wants to be referred to as a baby momma or baby daddy? Seriously???