HB: There’s actually a petition in response to your petition to get Shawty Lo back on the air…
SL: Well this is what I will say. They need to pool their money, buy a network and put it on. Get advertisers and put it on!
HB: What would you say if the show actually got the green light?
SL: It’s not going to. It’s not because it’s a wish. Advertisers shared with me [that] they’re not going to align their brand with a concept that shares such dangerous messages. They don’t care about him; they care about their brand. And those 37,000 people plus represent 37,000 families. And that doesn’t even include the 45,000 people who signed Color Of Change’s petition. And then the people from the hip-hop and the rap community that said, ‘Thank you! This is foul!’
HB: How do you feel about reality shows and how they portray women of color?
SL: I think that they are buffoonish. I believe that they set women up as enemies, as even Shawty Lo’s show did. The mothers were fighting each other. ‘How come that child got private education and mine didn’t? I had to go to her to get money from him!’ So these women crave and we crave to see ourselves on TV and then we’ll see a certain reality person and applaud them. Why? Did they cure cancer? What did they do? I know they’re at the red carpet, but what are they posing for? What are you posing for? Those images are constructed very carefully to skew your viewpoint of whomever they’re targeting. If there was balance there, I would still be opposed to this. But if there was balance and African-American producers, then that would be fine. But there isn’t. And we’re not even demanding it. This petition was done with six coalition members and 37,000 people.
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