Sunday, December 12, 2010

An Open Letter -- Please Re-Blog

 
 

Sent to you by moya via Google Reader:

 
 

via Liquor&Spice on 12/12/10

karliehustle:

To:       Jay Electronica, Kanye West, Chris Rock and Others
From:    Your Female Audience
Date:    12/10/2010
RE:       A Requested Apology

Gentlemen,
 
As female fans of your work, we would first like to thank you for creating.  We respect your right to artistic freedom in whatever form you choose to express it. However, we believe that the power you have to reach the masses has been irresponsibly used in an effort to objectify, exploit and abuse us through the vehicle of your commanding voices.
 
The creation of this open letter spawned from the following recent incidents in hip-hop:
 
1)  A Youtube video from a show in Seattle whereby MC Jay Electronica discussed on stage a $20,000 bet he currently has in place with fellow MC Nas and his tour DJ.
 
The wager was based on whether or not women "like being choked during sexual intercourse".  After acknowledging the fact that there were minors in the crowd, Jay Electronica continued his agenda and stated that he asks the question "do women enjoy being choked during sexual intercourse" at many of his shows.  He then solicited a crowd response from both male and female audience members.  The male response of approval for choking women during intercourse was blatantly louder than the response from female audience members.  Mr. Electronica then joked "there's a lot of women in Seattle being choked against their will". When a female in the audience replied with "that's not funny", Mr. Electronica quickly dismissed her sentiment and then encouraged the crowd to chant "we know it's not funny—relax—enjoy the music".  
 
The Youtube video of this incident can be viewed via this link:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oUSZmp0XkFQ
 
2)      The content of the Kanye West song "Blame Game" featuring John Legend and an ill-advised diatribe at the end via comedian Chris Rock.
 
The song itself contains talk of choking a female during the act of sex, hitting a female, calling her a bitch and berating her for their failed relationship.  Chris Rock closes the track with a bevy of remarks about a woman's female anatomy and sexual prowess, all credit due to Kanye West for "reupholstering" her vagina during their relationship.
 
You can read the lyrics to this song here:
http://www.directlyrics.com/kanye-west-blame-game-lyrics.html
 
 
As women who truly want to enjoy your collective works, the examples noted above make it impossible for us to do so.  As female fans, it is a conflict of interest to bump your music in our rides and sing along when every other word is a figurative slap in the face (or, dare we say, hand around our neck).
 
The blatant disregard for the female mind and body is not new to hip-hop, nor to society as a whole.  We realize the sentiment of us as sex objects and powerless beings at the hands of the male sexual agenda wasn't created in a lab by Kanye West, Chris Rock and Jay Electronica.  The historical dismissal of women is long-standing, as is the refusal to acknowledge us as conscious individuals with intellectual autonomy. However, that does not mean that you—under the label of "artist"—are exempt from accountability for your words and actions. For example, if a woman doesn't answer the question "do you like being choked during sex" correctly according to the male questioner, she is balked at and publicly chastised, as evidenced in the Jay Electronica incident.  This behaviour makes one thing very clear: our voices and perspectives are not respected, nor sought after.
 
Ultimately, we are tired of your interpretation of who we are. We will no longer tolerate you staking claim on our bodies as property. We will no longer tolerate you making decisions for us without asking. We will no longer tolerate you taking credit for what we do or don't do in the bedroom and beyond.  We will no longer tolerate you asking us what we like and then taking it upon yourselves to perpetrate your own agendas anyway. 
 
Your female fans want to make one thing clear:  You are not entitled to us.
 
We stand in solidarity with the understanding that your diatribes, rants and raves about specific women cannot be taken lightly. We aren't interested in passing the buck of responsibility to the next woman since "they aren't talking about us," because essentially you are talking about ALL of us collectively.  We find it incredibly dangerous that you use your power as a tool in which to perpetuate disrespect and violence against women, and furthermore, acceptance of that behaviour. Please be aware that this affects both women and men alike. 
 
We ask you the following questions, gentlemen:
 
1) Are you prepared to be implicated in the rape and continued abuse of women as a result of your words?
2) As sons, brothers of sisters and fathers of daughters do you not see the inherent flaw in vocalizing your predatory mindset about women?
3) What has led you to believe that we are not capable or worthy of making decisions about what is best for us?
4) What about reducing us down to a "wet hole" validates you?
 
In light of the seriousness of your statements, we believe an immediate public apology is in order. Please issue one today, so that the negative repercussions of your actions might be reduced and those who wish to support you can begin and/or continue doing so.


Sincerely,

Your Female Audience

This is BAWSE!!! It would make my life if any one of them engaged with and responded to this letter.


 
 

Things you can do from here:

 
 

5 comments:

yemoyasdaughter said...

I was quite excited upon hearing about JE’s signing with JZ (I am no fan of JZ’s music but when he speaks I do enjoy to hear him and knows he exhibits signs of simple brilliance…the dichotomy…hmmm). I thought the signing could be a push for more intelligible music, and interplanetary audible lyrics and images being heard in mainstream airwaves. I was born and grew up alongside hip hop and now that I am an adult I am looking back at not only my development through the years but hip hop’s as well… I am curious…

I have just recently (yesterday) come upon Jay’s comment and have gone through a myriad of emotions and at the very root of it I am confused and concerned at the state of the world especially as it relates to women. My husband and I have been avid appreciators of J.E. and his music, lyrics and overall character (from what we of course are privy to). I too understand we are all human…however, I do find this situation very baffling on many levels but mostly unsettling metaphysically, karmicly (not sure if it’s a word but I hope my gist is gotten;)) spiritually and even generationaly…I digress

My husband and I went to a Mos Def concert in ATL and JE opened for him, we were just as excited to see him perform…his energy was off the charts his flow was fluid and his charisma was aces. After his set he did something very different he led the whole audience in a non religious, universal yet sincere and divine word of non specific prayer. I thought the words he chose were poignant but the whole act quite different we both felt (after discussing on the way home that evening) that that prayer really set another tone for that evening and the crowd seemed more united (maybe it was just us). No one heckled him, told him to shut up…I fact many of us united hands, hearts and spirits. And I am unsure of whether he did it at each and every concert but that is a thought worth pondering. BTW both Mighty mos and JE ROCKED IT that night!!

I feel that had I gone to his concert in Seattle and he began or ended his set with the question he is NOW posing to audiences worldwide, I would have felt entirely different, not to mention the energy of the crowd. I know I would have left the building until Mos came on and then maybe would haven’t even stayed for his concert only feeling he could be “guilty by association” especially if it was polled at every concert…again I digress a bit…

yemoyasdaughter said...

I was quite excited upon hearing about JE’s signing with JZ (I am no fan of JZ’s music but when he speaks I do enjoy to hear him and knows he exhibits signs of simple brilliance…the dichotomy…hmmm). I thought the signing could be a push for more intelligible music, and interplanetary audible lyrics and images being heard in mainstream airwaves. I was born and grew up alongside hip hop and now that I am an adult I am looking back at not only my development through the years but hip hop’s as well… I am curious…

I have just recently (yesterday) come upon Jay’s comment and have gone through a myriad of emotions and at the very root of it I am confused and concerned at the state of the world especially as it relates to women. My husband and I have been avid appreciators of J.E. and his music, lyrics and overall character (from what we of course are privy to). I too understand we are all human…however, I do find this situation very baffling on many levels but mostly unsettling metaphysically, karmicly (not sure if it’s a word but I hope my gist is gotten;)) spiritually and even generationaly…I digress

My husband and I went to a Mos Def concert in ATL and JE opened for him, we were just as excited to see him perform…his energy was off the charts his flow was fluid and his charisma was aces. After his set he did something very different he led the whole audience in a non religious, universal yet sincere and divine word of non specific prayer. I thought the words he chose were poignant but the whole act quite different we both felt (after discussing on the way home that evening) that that prayer really set another tone for that evening and the crowd seemed more united (maybe it was just us). No one heckled him, told him to shut up…I fact many of us united hands, hearts and spirits. And I am unsure of whether he did it at each and every concert but that is a thought worth pondering. BTW both Mighty mos and JE ROCKED IT that night!!

yemoyasdaughter said...

I feel that had I gone to his concert in Seattle and he began or ended his set with the question he is NOW posing to audiences worldwide, I would have felt entirely different, not to mention the energy of the crowd. I know I would have left the building until Mos came on and then maybe would haven’t even stayed for his concert only feeling he could be “guilty by association” especially if it was polled at every concert…again I digress a bit…

After the concert, a friend of our was good friends with Mos and wanted to introduce us which was an added bonus of the evening so we waited outside and while we were waiting we were graced by JE…he wasn’t talking to everyone either, but he came and spoke to us (a group of sisters and my husband) and we inquired about his daughter and her well-being and he beamed a ray of light and broke out his cell phone and shared pictures and a brief story about Mars. Being a mother of two, a wife, daughter and aunt I felt his joy radiate and was touched to be a part of that moment with him…So fast forward to the present when I heard, read and meditated on the poll/bet he is posing I found my disturbance in these points here…
(Like you I know that consenting adults do what they like when they like and that’s one thing so rough sex, violent sex to each their own) BUT when attending a concert and having the person I am coming to see pose a question of this nature: 1.knowing there are minors present (he make his disclaimer in the video of him in Seattle) 2.knowing women are present and I am assuming this next point (based on the words he prayed at his previous concert) but 3.knowing the seed you are planting by stating a question of this nature in the minds of the public, the universe over and over again really upset me, saddened me and also alarmed me, at the lack of respect and consideration for the women from whence he came from and fathered. It alarmed me also because I had just seen a clip of Kanye’s new video Monster and there are many images just in the 40 second preview of women (mannequins) hanging from ceiling and Kanye kissing dead looking women, while fondling their genitalia, and knowing the connection between KW, JZ and now JE and praying that this is not the next level of abuse on women. I really am not against nor in support of the conspiracy theories but I am aware of my ancestors and spiritual guides and the knowledge of the power of words and ritual and I do stand firm in stating that this is a dangerous thread to “gamble” with…I know for a fact if his under aged daughter went to a concert and this was a topic of discussion AND GODDESS forbid a choking/sex incident like this occurred to his under aged daughter IT WOULD BE NO LAUGHING MATTER.

yemoyasdaughter said...

I feel that had I gone to his concert in Seattle and he began or ended his set with the question he is NOW posing to audiences worldwide, I would have felt entirely different, not to mention the energy of the crowd. I know I would have left the building until Mos came on and then maybe would haven’t even stayed for his concert only feeling he could be “guilty by association” especially if it was polled at every concert…again I digress a bit…

yemoyasdaughter said...

I am aware as adults we are all given choices and it is up to us as individuals to make our choices (right or wrong) and deal with the outcomes (positive or negative). The reasons as to the “whys” of this question are mute to me…was it a pub stunt, is it an initiation, was it “male” humor, is it really just a bet, is it linked to a song or was it simply a joke. However, the repercussions are what concern me.

I know we all make thoughtless mistakes and because I know of second chances I am prayerful that JE will step up and admit to his irresponsibility of this poll and right the wrongs that he has set into motion…and if he doesn’t I can no longer support this brother based of the fact that I am a woman, daughter, sister, wife, and come from a divine line of women.

I am grateful to you for this blog and posting and making a united stand.

Peace, love and positive motion with the ocean by the light of the moon goddess…
a daughter of Yemonya