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STD Fest? Sil Lai Abrams Speaks on How Reality TV Glamorizes Self-Destructive Behavior in Black Relationships

by Sil Lai Abrams

A few weeks ago I wrote an opinion piece for theGrio.com on how viewers of reality television shows like Love & Hip Hop Atlanta were actively supporting VH1’s and executive producer Mona Scott-Young’s racist and misogynistic assault on the image of black women in America.  Given that L&HHA was the most popular show on cable among black women aged 18-49 this summer, I knew there would be some who would defend this form of “entertainment”; after all black women comprise the majority of its 5.5 million viewers.

Commenters on various Internet news websites cited capitalism, personal apathy, and the shameless exhibitionism of show cast members as reasons why we should give VH1 and black female executive producers such as Scott-Young and Basketball Wives producer Shaunie O’Neal a break. These reasons for some seem to justify putting out television programming that attacks African-American women and decimates black love on a weekly basis.  And, it’s a damn shame that any black woman in a position of power would feel comfortable exploiting her sisters in her quest for the almighty dollar. But in my opinion the two larger issues that need to be addressed are:

1. The fact that cable networks think it’s acceptable to perpetuate racist and misogynistic stereotypes of black women, and

2. That black women feel comfortable watching and defending these networks’ stereotypical programming.

While we can argue our personal views on the legitimacy or illegitimacy of the show genre from here to eternity, what is difficult to refute is the emerging research showing the negative effect these modern day, real-life minstrel shows are having on the health of black women and black relationships. This is why we must address their continuing media dominance now.

Read More at TheGrio.com

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17 Responses to STD Fest? Sil Lai Abrams Speaks on How Reality TV Glamorizes Self-Destructive Behavior in Black Relationships

  1. Daniel McCullough Reply

    August 29, 2012 at 2:56 pm

    THANK YOU !!!! All of your points are dead on, when we take on the character of the very society and culture that has oppressed us for generations as a people what dose that say about us. My up bringing often said “all money aint good money”. This “reality show” culture has turned into the new addiction that does nothing but but dumb down our population.

  2. Jeanette Reply

    August 30, 2012 at 9:54 am

    I am not condoning any of the behaviors of anyone on Hip Hip Atlanta. I think men have more of a problems with the show because it shows the real life behavior of men. They are cheater, this has been a non-topic forever. This show whether negative or positive puts it up for conversation.

  3. Max Reply

    September 4, 2012 at 9:16 pm

    Jeanette , you are pathetic and easily cajoled into drinking the polluted waters of the medias portrayal of us. The same deliberate belittling of us is seen on MAURY, JERRY, STEVE WILKOS, BILL CUNNINGHAM, JEREMY KYLE, etc. All Khazar’s. IT ever dawned on you that for a population so small , we seem to headline all theses shows in the worst dramatic fashion which can be found in every ethnic group , but for some reason we are all ways shown as the disproportionate societal dysfunction, the same disproportionate incarceration of our people. Be smart and question WHY ? Why is it that we are relentless show and exploited at the same time in the same light. Why ? Why are we always being shown in the same disproportionate and negative light over every and all groups. What is the goal of all this deliberate act. Think Bitch, Think !

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