Folks when I started this site, my intention was to follow “ The Iron Rule.” The Iron Rule is that you never do for others what they won’t do for themselves. Under The Iron Rule, you are not supposed to speak FOR people, but help them speak, act and engage for themselves. At the heart of The Iron Rule is that ordinary people can change their communities.
So maybe I haven’t been clear up to this point. I appreciate all the nice e-mails and comments BUT… I NEED Y’ALL’S HELP! We have been ABANDONED by the institutions of our parent’s generation. Where is the NAACP? I’ve sent them half a dozen e-mails and called the national headquarters . We KNOW Rev. AL can’t speak out because he is now on BET’s payroll. “Suddenly” they extend a two hour forum that he was on to a six-part series. Coincidence? I don’t think so. Where are the fraternities and sororities? The civic organizations? Why are they all MIA while a rag tag group of 20-somethings and 30-somethings are fighting one of the largest and most powerful media companies in the world?
Like I said, I don’t want to speak for anybody. This is easy for me, it is like breathing, but I never intended. Nor do I want to lead anything. The point was to use my talents to let the world know that there was a problem and then “PRESTO” ordinary people would take the lead. SO I appreciate y’all’s comments, but I need you r action right now.
Let’s take it back to the old days on this blog when I highlighted the efforts of grassroots organizations and other bloggers. We’re going to have to do this ourselves, our parent’s generation isn’t going to save us, and maybe that is the way the Universe intended this thing to go down. Maybe "Hot Ghetto Mess" is our moment. This is the World Series and “Hot Ghetto Mess” is a 5 MPH pitch. If we can’t hit this out of the park, what can we hit?
Folks we had our “ A New Hope” now “ The Empire Had Stricken Back” I am calling out for the “Return of the Black Blogging ( and NON BLOGGING) Jedi” ( I know y’all hate my Star Wars analogies OMI, do not send me a comment on how I screwed up another Star Wars analogy. I’m trying here. :)
In the meantime, you HAVE to call or e-mail ALL THREE of your Congressional Legislators. That means your US Representative and BOTH of your US Senators . EVEN IF YOU DON”T LIKE THEM. EVEN if they belong to a party you are not too pleased with right now. It might be the politicians that we don’t like who help us out because clearly the folks who you would think would have our back are on vacation. Even if you didn’t vote for ‘em, they still represent you. All THREE please, we only got nine days! Surely the CEO of Viacom doesn't want to have to go to Capitol Hill to testify in front of the world and try to justify " Hot Ghetto Mess" Can y'all imagine THAT hearing?
Let them know you are African American. You support cable choice or a la carte cable and the reason you support it is because until BET has to deal with cable choice they will arrogantly keep shoving stuff like “Hot Ghetto Mess”and “Uncut” down our throats. It is about the only thing that might put the fear of the living GOD into Viacom and make them smack some sense into Reginald Hudlin and Debbie Lee. One of the arguments against a la carte cable and cable choice is that specialty channels like BET would face extinction thus decreasing programming diversity, but if “Hot Ghetto Mess” is their idea of “diverse programming” then GOOD RIDDANCE!
BET is run by a bunch of arrogant sociopaths. We have to bring the PAIN! UM and like NOW would be a TIME! It is not enough for y'all to keep e-mailing me telling me y'all hate BET. I need you to e-mail me and tell me you just e-mailed or called your Senators and your House Rep.
SUGGESTED LANGUAGE FOR YOUR EMAILS (Courtesy Of One of My Readers. Thanks!)
To the Honorable (Your Representatives first and last name here),As a young African American woman and mother (or man/ father), I can no longer stand for the ill conceived programming that cable channels such as BET are broadcasting daily. Coming soon is BET's "Hot Ghetto Mess" that they describe as a "car wreck you can't look away from" in its depictions of African Americans circumstances that leave much to be desired. It is this reason that I support ala carte cable (cable choice). I refuse to let my cable subscription pay for programming that continues to create and reinforce damaging stereotypical images of Black men, women and children with far- reaching effects. I ask that you urge your colleagues in the House and Senate to support the The Family and Consumer Choice Act of 2007 introduced by Rep. Lipinski in June. Thank You,(Your Name)
BET EXECS DEFEND "Hot Ghetto Mess"
BET wants to profit and exploit the website HotGhettoMess.com, but they don't want the derivative show to be associated with the website? Well, they ARE in Hollywood so they can create whatever fantasy they want to justify their behavior. The truth is BET cannot divorce itself from the website. They are married for as long as the show seeks ratings and media by calling it by the same name. The truth is that Jamilla Donaldson is a grown Black woman who has nothing better to do than humiliate children:
"I am the mother of the teenager who was exposed on your website. She was at her senior prom and someone snapped a photo while she was dancing and submitted it to your website. Her breast had come out of her dress and she was bending over while looking back during a dance position. She had no idea this had happened and is very humiliated by this." Comment From HotGhettoMess.com
Zero information? I don't think so. Reginald Hudlin clearly thinks that working class Black people are trash or pawns for whatever bizarre social experiment BET wants to conduct on us (THIS TIME). Jamilla Donaldson has a law school education and is using her training and experience to torment poor people, children, and victims of internet bullying. These are two Black people who have been given every privilege society has to offer and they are using that to exploit working class Black people who don't have the defenses to protect themselves. Hudlin and Donaldson can use their privilege to buffer themselves from their decisions.
Who is going to protect the teenage girl whose mother had to beg Jamilla Donaldson in front of the word to end the humiliation of her daughter on her PROM NIGHT? What About THIS Woman's Daughter? Is she just collateral damage so Donaldson and Hudlin can make a point and make a buck?
Please stop quoting Charles Hamilton Houston Jamilla. You spit on his legacy by tormenting the poor and uneducated on a daily basis.
Notice AGAIN that the AP news article only includes quotes from Jamilla and Reginald Hudlin. For some reason Los Angeles-based reporters don't want to talk to critics of the show the appear to want to only provide Jamilla and Reggie Hudlin an unfettered ability to spin this their way.
Tomorrow is another day. It has been reported that BET is continuing with "Hot Ghetto Mess" There is nothing else I can do about it tonight so I am going to catch up some much needed rest.
It is clear that we are dealing with some supernatural evil over at Beelzebub Entertainment Television. SO those of you who have a higher power on speed dial, do your thing.
Right now. Don't wait ANOTHER minute. You need to e-mail your United States Representative and indicate that you support Cable Choice. Then you need to e-mail your United States Senator and tell them that you support cable choice. In your contact message you need to put the URL for HotGhettoMess.com and indicate that Viacom's BET is going to broadcast a show of the same name that the network has described as a "car wreck you can't look away from". The original site features toddlers in a abusive and neglectful conditions, teenaged girls victimized by their high school enemies, and rampant nudity. If this is programming diversity, we don't need it.
Power speaks to Power. We've exercised the power of the capital markets, but because BET pulls in 80% of its revenue from compulsory cable fees, they apparently don't have to listen to advertisers either. So the next target has to be its nonadvertising revenue and THAT would be wiped out significantly if BET had to rely on people choosing to pay for as opposed to being forced to pay for it.
Are we really surprised? Well folks get girded for battle. If we can't kill something called "Hot Ghetto Mess" then we can't kill anything. What utter and complete disrespect does a corporation have to have for Black people to purchase air time on something like this. (Source) Funny if it is such a GREAT SHOW. Why didn't they present it at the Television Critics Association Meeting? They keep saying critics haven't seen the show. Well preview the show to someone else other than your paid spokesperson who moonlights as an LA Times reporter. The reason they can't preview the show is because they are sanitizing the show to remove all of the rumpshaking contests that they licensed.
We’re not doing escapism,” Mr. Hudlin said, adding that with a broad programming slate, BET is trying to be the “responsible broadcaster people want us to be.”
What an arrogant elitist sociopath. Viacom, seriously just gut the executive ranks at BET and start over. You are pulling a publicity stunt by using a sensational title for a show.
Mr. Hudlin, who took the reins at BET two years ago, said the show was part of the network’s effort to address those problems in a way that would be appealing to 18- to 34-year-old viewersI'm 31 so I am so unintelligent that the only way I will find something appealing is if it is couched in the form of comedic entertainment? BET created MANY of the problems they are now trying to address. This is like a crack dealer opening up a rehab. You can't dole out tough love if there was no love in the first place. BET clearly does not LOVE Black people! They are going to shove this down our throats just like they did with BET Uncut because they think that we are powerless to do otherwise.
You forgot about Uncut? Let me remind you. FOR SIX YEARS BET aired "Uncut", which contained highly sexualized and drug use imagery. Uncut featured such cultural gems as “No Panties (On the Dance Floor)” by Wax-a-million, “Shake That S**t” by Preacha, “P****y Poppin'“ by Ludacris feat. Shawnna and Lil Fate, Lil' Flip , “You'ze A Trick - I Don't Give A F*ck” by Lil' Jon & The Eastside Boyz, “Smoke With Me” by The Firemen(unlike other videos, this one focused on smoking marijuana), “I Got That Drank” (this one focused on the rising trend of the drug codeine cough syrup ) by Frayser Boy feat. Mike Jones and Paul Wall, and perhaps most famous of all “Tip Drill” by Nelly.
WHERE IN THE WORLD IS REV AL?? HE's cashing his check from BET. No wonder he's been absolutely SILENT about "Hot Ghetto Mess." He's carrying water for Viacom.
Right now. Don't wait ANOTHER minute. You need to write your United States Representative and indicate that you support Cable Choice. Then you need to write your United States Senator and tell them that you support cable choice. In your contact message you need to put the URL for HotGhettoMess.com and indicate that Viacom's BET is going to broadcast a show of the same name that the network has described as a "car wreck you can't look away from". The original site features toddlers in a abusive and neglectful conditions, teenaged girls victimized by their high school enemies, and rampant nudity. If this is programming diversity, we don't need it.
BET has gone into DEFCON 2 . Debra Lee, Reginald Hudlin, and Jamilla Donaldson have been taken to an undisclosed location. This all happened after they got the LA Times to print a "love fest" of an article where they were given free reign to defend themselves without a single quote from a critic of the show. The reporter claims he didn't have time to speak with dissenters or he couldn't find any ( No really. He did. I have his e-mail to prove it.)
Now everybody at BET is in a "conference" and they ain't returning telephone calls. Multiple reporters have been telling me that
My friend threw out the interesting and not-too-far-fetched theory that BET is treading water hoping that the increased publicity will make the show soo appealing to some advertiser that they can replace any of the sponsors that they have lost. Interesting. We speculated for a couple of minutes on which companies would be so amoral as to want to have their products or services associated with something called " Hot Ghetto Mess". Hilarity ensued.
BET isn't releasing the names of corporations who purchased advertising on " Hot Ghetto Mess" So just for kicks ( Lord knows we need some humor around here.).... Which corporations would be willing to have their corporate brands associated with something called "Hot Ghetto Mess"?
UPDATE: SUSPENSION OF THE PODCAST. I hope you had an opportunity to hear yesterday's podcast of the Black Women's Round Table. I received a lot of "suggestions" for improvement from lots of folks, even family members who I know love me. I know they didn't intend to, but each new suggestion sucks more and more fun out of doing it. One of the prices of increased attention is that people start to place additional expectations and burdens on you. I knew that was a price I was going to have to pay in order to Defund Hot Ghetto Mess and it was a relative low price to pay. So to all my regulars, once things die down again ( Hopefully) I'll think about doing the show again because it was fun, but right now, all the joy has been sucked out of it for me.