Sunday, May 25, 2008

Keeping Up With The Jones

Omi's Note: Tony Muhammed, an educator and Dj from Florida had some pretty interesting things to say about the Indiana JOnes promo on BET's 106 and park. To be honest, I have only seen one episode of that teeny bopper show in my entire life (what ever happened to Teen summit?). But check it out. the link is below. Let me know what you think. (big up to Davey D for this).

Keeping Up With the Joneses: BET and the Subliminal Culture of White Supremacy

By Bro.
Tony Muhammad

Since Viacom bought out Black Entertainment Television (BET) my attention towards the cable channel's programming has diminished to a crawl. I noticed several years ago how as soon as the take over was complete the changes became obvious.
Conscientious talk show host Tavis Smiley was immediately fired from BET Tonight and replaced by the non-threatening Ed Gordon, ultimately doing away with the late night news segment altogether. At the same time, Rap City seemed to have all of a sudden lost its edge on bridging the gaps between the old, new and true schools in Hip Hop.
The predominant images in Hip Hop, especially on the famed 106 and Park became increasingly trendy; which actually meant more sexist, savagely stereotypical and violently vulgar. Alienated, I like many other conscientious loyal viewers made the decision to tune out. With the exception of special eye catching programs such as the Hip Hop Verses America panel series that aired last year, the only updates I would receive about what was shown on BET came through my students.

Flash forward to May 20th, 2008. It was late afternoon. A very close friend of mine who happens to be a pioneer in the music industry was visiting from out of town. He was flipping through channels on my living room television set and just so happened to land on BET. He quickly called me over to pay special attention to what was taking place on the screen. The first obvious thing I noticed was that this was a special 106 and Park show, promoting the release of the movie Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The first thought that came to my mind was that this was rather unusual, considering that all of the main characters in the film are white.
This is Black Entertainment Television after all right??? Not only this but the main character himself, Indiana Jones played by Harrison Ford, is supposed to be a famous anthropologist who is on a life-long journey to explore non-Western lands for precious treasures, which in his mind should be placed on display in Western (European) museums.

Co-host Terrence J was wearing an Indiana Jones get up on the show; brown leather jacket, brimmed hat and all. The show was airing live from the Magic Johnson movie theatre in what was once known as the Mecca of Black intellectualism and culture; Harlem, New York. Today, Harlem's population has been "whitewashed" as a result of rabid gentrification efforts. I automatically started making these connections in my mind and became concerned yet interested to see more.
I then noticed two pillars, one on either side of the set, reminiscent of ancient Egypt (Kemit), which according to the Honorable Elijah Muhammad was one of the last greatest Black civilizations on Earth. It quickly dawned on me that the first Indiana Jones movie, Raiders of the Lost Ark, took place in Egypt (Kemit) and how many of its glorious ancient artifacts are today found in many Western museums and how European (white) scholars have historically discredited Black people from developing such a civilization; giving more credit to what has been termed as "North African Caucasoids" (if there ever was such a thing) or simply put, "tanned" white people. Knowing all of this is important in order to understand what was to come.

Ashanti was the first artist to perform between the two pillars. On one level she appeared culturally enriched, with makeup around her eyes symbolic of the great pharaohs of ancient Egypt (Kemit). Artistically however, it was obvious that she is being molded according to corporate-music industry research standards - trying to mold her to sound more like what's presently "hot" (Keyshia Cole) rather than her own natural soft sensual musical self. After Ashanti's performance Shia LaBeouf, who plays Indiana Jones' sidekick Mutt Williams, was brought up on stage. He was asked to kick a freestyle, but refused.Instead, he did the "Crip Walk. " The audience cheered.

read more here...


Jdid said...

i dont usually get home from work early enough to catch 106 and when i do get home that early i usually avoid BET unless I'm in one of my so will i recognize any of the songs on the top 10 moods.

BUT i was home on Thusrday and I did see segments of the Indiana Jones show. First off it was just like the Mission Impossible three show with them trying to get these hollywood actors to connect and it just wasnt happening. Fordand company looked like jackasses trying to do the silly balling dance just like Tom Cruise had looked trying to do the motocycle young jock dance,

then they made it even worse with the whip. i commented to my wife that i wouldnt be caught dead on stage playing with no whip cause i was likely to have a slave flashback and make a run for it. could not believe they did that crap to be honest. this cat cracking his whip and wrapping it around rocsi. absolutely trash!

BET is a sham and a true disgrace

Amadeo said...

Just can't get with em. I'm stuck...I want to know what's going on...but I can't bear to look.