The Marc Steiner Show

11/29/07 Ghetto Nation

“Prostitution is hilarious!”

I’m always shocked when I hear about some stupid group on a college campus having a Pimp’s and Ho’s party, or a “Ghetto” themed party where you are encouraged to bring 40’s in brown paper bags and “wear your favorite gang colors!”  I mean, do these people really not get it?  Are they really unaware that someone is going to be offended by this?  Where is the motivation, anyway?  Why do people want to emulate ghetto stereotypes and celebrate the worst of human behavior?

These are the questions that Cora Daniels asks in her most recent book, Ghetto Nation: A Journey into the Land of Bling and the Home of the Shameless.  Why do people like Paris Hilton appropriate ghetto attitudes and style?  How can corporate America defend it’s practices of making so much money off harmful ghetto stereotypes? Do we really live in a world where Pimp and Ho”  for children costumes are available?  Yes.  We sure do.

Let’s discuss…at Noon…

-Jessica

Written by Marc Steiner

Marc Steiner

The Marc Steiner Show airs Monday thru Friday from 10AM to Noon on WEAA 88.9 FM. The show covers the topics that matter, engaging real voices, from Charm City to Cairo and beyond. Call us at 410.319.8888 or email us to participate live in the show, or share your comments on our site! Aren’t in Baltimore but want to listen? Stream the show live.


Comments

  1. I have to say I truly enjoyed listening to the program today. Your
    guest’s (12-1 afternoon show) comments reminded me of the issue which
    I often had to deal with as a black woman when I was in college (being
    black associated with being ghetto). I graduated 4 years ago and
    currently in grad school.

    In my experience, it was not the white folks around me that tried to
    force a ‘ghetto’ image on to me. It was the black folks–in this
    case, my roommates. Twice I was assigned roommates randomly by the
    University. When I asked why, I was actually told that they figured
    that because we were both black we would have TONS in common (I
    attended a predominantly white school). Well, it didn’t turn out that
    way because my roommates moved out w/in a few weeks because and I
    quote: ” I wasn’t black enough. I didn’t wear baggy clothes, I
    didn’t listen to ‘loud’ music, I didn’t talk ‘ghetto” and I liked to
    save my money.” The most proposteroous reason that I got was that: I
    liked to study!!! and black folk are not supposed to do that a
    lot”III. I was too ‘white’. I remember I responded in anger and
    said to one of these roommates: Since when do I have to be a slacker
    in other to prove my race? I found out later that these two roommates
    and many of their friends dropped out of the university a few months
    later.

    Personally, I think that we can blame the coorporations all we want
    for perpetuating and making a buck off the ghetto image, but it’s us
    black folks that have to take the stand and stop making such negative
    stereotypes profitable for them.

  2. A collection of comments … (I emailed four times in response to comments)

    ********************************************************************************
    Last week I saw the movie “A Piece of The Action” with Sidney Poitier and Bill Cosby and the speech he gave the class about their responsibility I mused could have been given last week.

    He told the kids that they can’t blame the man for not giving them a job and ultimately it’s up to them to get out of the “hole” they are in. It’s a two-way street though

    Your previous caller assumes that if one isn’t acting “ghetto”, one would not experience any racial preference. Another caller seemed to imply that styles that black folks may prefer are synonymous with drugs…

    And ad agencies…. very few “mainstream” agencies have any idea what’s going on in black people’s head because they employ so few of them …

    ********************************************************************************
    We cannot blame the corporation. Corporations are not our parents. Corporations want a return on investment. When people rely on corporations for guidance, this represents a fault in our thinking. We’d have to rely on focus groups to determine whether slavery was wrong. Corporations don’t care about what black folks think. Stop letting corporations raise your kids and set your opinions. Hip-hop is not about being a thug.

    ********************************************************************************
    In the last hour, there was a question asked by a caller regarding where the black fathers were? Well… Often they’re locked up at higher rates disproportionately or addicted. Check the unbalanced stats on that. While it’s a two-way street, part of this relates to the lack of involvement by and large of black men in the economic engine of America. Your guest in the current hour referred to the stable household and I can say that that stability can be very tenuous, but if it’s there it does help.

    I was raised by a single female parent. When I think back to the support that some of the other kids had (for instance being the only black on my high school’s baseball team) I think that the supports that I lacked didn’t turn me into a criminal, but made me think long and hard about the challenges that young black men face.

    comments from the last hour …

    “I would disagree with the host. (now I’m not a republican, but) I think that the father figure for young people, particulary males, is very important figure that changes some of the dimensions of growth… Many figures like Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan and others had strong father figures that were a counterweight of parentage…”

    —Thomas

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