A seven minute video uploaded on YouTube by someone with the username ‘IRSfamily’ has created a viral response because a boycott has been petitioned for the self-proclaimed Barbie—Nicki Minaj. Professing to be a Barbie at the ripe age of29 should be reason enough why Onika shouldn’t be a famous rapper, but continue on I have better arguments.
According to ‘IRSfamily’, the “Super Bass” rapper should be boycotted for the anti-black recurring themes she presents in her music toward Black women and men. In two of Minaj’s raps that the man presents, she depicts Black women as “banana-eating chimpanzees” and “nappy-headed hoes”. I’m certain we are aware of these disparaging sayings and their origins, no need to further the hate. In another, she raps “How you gonna be the stunt double to the n**** monkey” speaking about the Black male counterpart. (Say what?)
In the YouTube video by the Black male he provides some personal commentary, several written messages over a few of Minaj’s raps along with yesteryear’s music and artists and some notables rocking afros. While the young man would like us to boycott Nicki, he doesn’t say how he would like to see the boycott to take place, but that it should take place to “teach our sisters, our mothers, our girlfriends, our daughters…to love themselves.”
First off, Nicki does not represent me. Nor does not rocking an afro means I’m not representing the love I have for my Black self.
I wish he was more absolute about what he really wants the public to do. Does he want the public to not buy Minaj’s music? Not attend her concerts? Not buy any magazine she graces or is featured in? Does he want us to write radio stations to complain about her foul music and the airtime she receives?
I happen to think our issues collectively are deeper than Minaj or any lyrics she thrust together to make two lines rhyme for the sake of selling a record. Honestly, I wouldn’t have ever known Minaj disrespected Blacks because I don’t listen to her. She lost me with the wacked-out get-ups and calling herself a Barbie. She’s not someone who neither appeals to me nor speaks to me. And if she doesn’t speak to me, she’s likely not to speak for me.
But I recognize how this harms us as a whole because we co-exist, so your/my downfall begins a ricochet of effects. So, why are people so drawn to her? What about a young Black woman comparing you to a chimpanzee and calling you a nappy head hoe is appealing? This mentality needs to be boycotted. Why is it cool to be nicknamed a Barbie and not recognized by the first gift your parents gave you—your birth name?
I don’t hold Minaj fully responsible for bettering the thoughts of our children, but if the adults who raise our children are bobbing their heads, downloading on iTunes and repeating these abhorrent lyrics, then who is closer to the child to make an impact? Our parents, our next door neighbors, our church family should be better models of what should be welcoming in our children’s hearts and minds.
I think a dialogue is necessary for those who do find Nicki and the likes entertaining. Once an understanding is provided as to why she is liked, bought, and listened to, then we can break down those barriers which obviously lead to destructive patterns of hate. The underlined issues must be uprooted to really rid the problem of perpetual repugnance. Otherwise Nicki is not worthy of our time to boycott.
By Deidre White