In Response To BMWK’s Article on Shawty Lo and All My Babies Mamas

BY: - 28 Dec '12 | On the Web

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This letter from a BMWK reader who asked to remain anonymous, is in response to an article that originally ran yesterday titled: Reality TV? New Show “All My Babies Mamas” is Our Own Doing. Please read it and let us know what you think in the comments section. Were we too harsh?

An Anonymous Letter

Hi.  I’d like to keep my name anonymous because of the sensitive nature of one of your Facebook posts today.  You posted a video about a man and his baby mamas getting a show on Oxygen.  I have to tell you.  I’m one of those women.

No, I won’t appear on the show and never met, Shawty Lo, but I’m an African-American woman who fell in love with a man who had more kids than he could count and am now one of his baby mamas.  At first, I took your attack on the show very personally, but kept reading the comments of people and I definitely see the point.  Yes, we as a culture need to do better by our children by putting them in two parent homes with long-loving relationships as their guide, but we all know that’s just not the world we live in.  To enslave us, White people would often separate African-American families.  I see a lot of people thinking this show does the same thing in 2013, but I also know something else to be true.  There was a time no matter how right or wrong someone was we embraced each other and raised our children in a village.  There were all kinds of reasons parents didn’t have nuclear families (masters raping slaves comes to mind, and the aforementioned separation when families were sold), but in the end we didn’t sit around and gossip or if we did we made sure that when that child or even his mother came around they had food, shelter, and the wise counsel of the elders on how to push on.  I consider you to be that elder.  You have counseled many on various shows, why not step in to counsel these people or at least give some insight as to how to go on versus looking back.

Now as far as getting along with the other mothers in my little situation, I wish we could all sit down because no matter what happens in the future our children are all related.  I can’t get away from these women or my child’s father even if I wanted to.  As a person who is taking care of her responsibilities I owe my daughter the chance to  make the call on what kind of man her father is.  I’ve done my part in distancing myself from the situation.  Oh, and just so you know when we were together kids just kept popping up.  He lied.  I didn’t know the full story until we were well on our way to being completely in each other’s lives.

You or any other prominent person knows that it was the Honey Boo Boos and Jerry Springers who brought these things into our living rooms.  Like just a little bit of crack will get you hooked, so will a little bit of gossip.  People have loved drama since Phil Donahue and Oprah.  Yes, the good ones will teach you a thing or two, too, but they know how to mix in their bits of drama.  This isn’t new, but it is improved.

I pray for all those women and their kids, and even their father.  I got to say that he seems to spend time with them and they may have some difficulties, but as blended families go, they have started at the right place which is communication.  They can make it further if we look to solve the problem as a Black community or an American community, but I don’t see how any of the tearing down of their characters (and believe me…at least one of them is embarrassed by this…I know I am) is going to be a part of the solution.  Maybe we should see this as an opportunity to embrace the weakest of us because we are only as strong as they are.

With love and admiration…

A fan…

See the original article here: Reality TV? New Show “All My Babies Mamas” is Our Own Doing

BMWK family, this obviously is a hot topic. Let us know what you think about this letter in the comments section. Do you agree with the writer?

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37 WordPress comments on “In Response To BMWK’s Article on Shawty Lo and All My Babies Mamas

  1. Aja Dorsey Jackson

    In my original post, my point really was not to suggest that all children are born in nuclear families or to tear down those who are not. I have a child myself that I have from a previous relationship. And I agree that families, no matter how they’re made up, need support. But I stand by the fact that this should not be on TV. Oxygen, or any other network, is not putting this out there to get the public’s support, and that isn’t how the public will consume it. The show is being created for entertainment purposes only and to show over the top drama, babies’ mamas fighting each other etc. so that the rest of the world can laugh and gossip. It’s making a public, humorous display of what are some of the most detrimental parts of our society beginning with rampant unprotected sex. If this were a serious look at family structures with a call to action, I think it would be one thing, but at the end of the day, the goal is just to have black people laughing at other black people on TV, and nothing about this scenario is funny. I do truly appreciate your letter, and agree with many points.

    Reply
  2. Cheryl

    Although the young lady’s response was eloquently written, we still have to call a thing, a thing, as Iyanla Vanzant says. This show is exploitative by design, and all those participating are complicit. If you have the capacity to recognize a so called slave mentality, you cannot claim to be a victim of it.

    Reply
  3. Dasugo

    There isn’t a village anymore. You know why? if there was, this guy will not be able to nail 10 women and have babies by them. The “village” will warn women or shun him from getting with all these women.

    We are free as a people. The prison is in our minds.

    Reply
  4. Apostle Tim Watson

    As eloquently as that article was written by this young lady, it is still spouting excuses for this ridiculous show rather than offering a solution to stop such nonsense. If you are really that aware of the catalyst for the broken nuclear families within the Black community, then why fall victim to them? How does an intelligent woman, regardless of her ethnicity, knowingly get caught up with a man with multiple babies by many different woman, and actually become one of those women? The children are only one of many possible outcomes! What about the risk of a death-sentence STD? That’s self-hate today that you can consciously blame on something that happened over 150 years ago? The key word being “consciously!” According to her own commentary, she seems intelligent, and well aware of the cause of her situation, yet she got in it anyway! Yes, I do agree with her that it “takes a village” as was the case with many of us in our formidable days of youth. However, that doesn’t mean we don’t hold one another accountable for OUR own actions. Our people can’t continue delivering “self-inflicted wounds” and then scream for emergency assistance! The fact of the matter is, this show is asinine at best…and anyone who would justify and defend its existence, and portrayal of any segment of Blacks in America, is doing a disservice TO Black America… WITH THE INFORMATION AVAILABLE TODAY, YOU KNOW BETTER! Let’s stop being victims of the past, and start being legacy-changers of the present into the future!

    Reply
  5. The Author of The Article

    First, I have to thank everyone who took a moment to give their opinion on what I said. I thank you for reading and offering your thought out opinions.

    Second, if I were in any way proud of my status I would have gladly signed the letter, but it isn’t even something my family has full disclosure on. It’s that deep.

    Third, I don’t condone the show or airing our or any dirty laundry. I have watched maybe a handful of reality shows and am loathe to see anyone putting their business out there. It makes my skin crawl.

    Fourth, I’m not defending this man or his women or even myself. I’m saying that we, as a village, need to get out there and prevent things like this from happening. I’ve been a mentor to several children, taught creative learning on weekends, and generally feel like I contribute to society. I have been on welfare, but that was before my child was born. Now I take care of her with a great job. I don’t know why people equate “baby mama” with welfare, but that’s just how some jump to judgement.

    We can’t go backwards. Shawty has done what Shawty gonna do. And you already know there are going to be young women who fall in love with him, his situation, and seek to be baby mamas…16 and Pregnant anyone? But we need to be there as everyone has said TURNING OFF THIS SHOW and all the other ones that lead into it.

    I’m going to teach my child/children by example and by actually talking to them, and by learning from my mistakes. Building my circle of friends and influence is also on the agenda. They will also learn that until you have walked a mile in another man’s shoes you shouldn’t judge, but if there is anything you can do to smooth out their journey ALWAYS lend a hand. And I think that’s what some of you were missing from what I said.

    Reply
    1. Cheryl

      Glad to see you came back and responded. I am confused now though. How does saying this show is trash infer that the commenters are NOT out in the community doing positive things? Even those who are not able to mentor on a personal level are out there living by example.

      Reply
      1. The Author of The Article

        I didn’t mean to infer that. I just think there are those out there who spend a lot of time on FB spouting this is wrong and so is that, but what actual moves are they making? Of course, I have no idea and don’t mean to lay judgement or condemnation on anyone.

        Reply
    2. DJ

      Sadly, the village no longer exist. It’s gone. It’s every man (and woman) out for themselves. If it did, we wouldn’t have half of the problems in community that we have now, including men with 100 children by 100 different women.

      Reply
  6. Kimberly Dennis

    I do admit that I often wonder, are we more concerned with the “nonsense” we see in these types of shows, or are we more concerned with the view white people will have of us (or the negative view that is perpetuated) by this show? I also often wonder why we are more concerned with how white people view us, but not as concerned with how we TREAT each other.

    We judge, we wag our fingers, we look down our noses, we shout out popular cliché’s, but do we HELP one another? Yes, we tell our girls to have more respect for themselves, but do we SHOW them how to? Yes, we expect those in our community to be responsible for their mistakes, but do we practice what we preach when we refuse to own the mistake of our judgement of them? Usually, and unfortunately, the answer is far too often, no!

    As so many previous posters have said, this issue is about choices. So lets make one collective choice, shall we? Let’s stop holding only the dumb “Baby Momma’s” responsible, and start holding the Shorty Lo’s just as responsible. Can we begin by teaching our boys that it is no more appropriate to be sexually inappropriate than it is for our girls? We have prominent, successful “Men of God” in the entertainment industry right now, pushing his books, telling women to act like them, but think like him…..telling women that they can’t behave like men and be promisucous because “that’s not what they are built for”…..telling women to hold the cookie until…..(wedding ring, bills are paid, he starts acting right, take your pick), to essentially sell themselves (because that’s the only part of a woman that actually holds any power and is worth lovingr) for the highest price. But I hear NO ONE in the black community calling this “brother” out for spouting such ingnorance!! And we wonder why women like these baby mommas exist? No, they are not victims, they are confused, in part, by the messages that WE send them. So let us start taking some of our own responsibility tonic. Lets start by sending a clear concise message of empowerment and love, not judgment and loathing.

    Bottom line is this: we are just as responsible for this mess as the parents are! Epecailly those who say “You got yourself into this mess, now get yourself out of it!” All of these people didn’t get into this mess by themselves, so they sure as hell can’t get out of it….by themselves! That is not the kind of community that I want to belong to!!

    Reply
  7. DJ

    I can empathize with the author, but I can’t agree with her statements and explanations. I too, was ALMOST caught up in a messy situation like this by a lying, deceitful man. When you are “in love” or only see what you want to see, or believe what you want to believe, as women, we often make stupid decisions. But truth be told, the red flags are ALWAYS there, but we choose to ignore it or make excuses for it to fit into our own fantasy that we create in our heads. We have to do better at listening to that 6th sense God gave us and acting on it.

    I briefly watched the trailer to this show and yes, the women have to take responsibility for type of dysfunction, but Shawty Lo and men-children (he’s not a real man) like him are the #1 culprits. We live in a society where women are taught that “men will be men” and we’re supposed to accept their bad behavior, conform to it, “fix” their issues, and even BLAMED for the way they behave. This line of thinking has to stop and men need to be held accountable for their ill behaviors as well. Shawty Lo knows exactly what he’s doing. He’s preying on another vulnerable young woman, a clueless 19 year-old, but no one will say a word about that because he’s “just being a man.”

    Reply
    1. The Author of The Article

      DJ, you are 100% right. I even remember some of the moments when I KNEW I should have fled (this was a long-term thing and my child was conceived after us being together for many years). Instincts are always right. I just choose to rationalize them away.

      Reply
    2. Kimberly Dennis

      Absolutely, we all, men and women, make mistakes in love and relationships. We can be naive and unaware of the signs we see, or sometimes simply ignore the signs. Goodness knows, I’ve made my share of mistakes….some BIG mistakes. But here’s the good news. I was lucky enough to be surrounded by strong women AND men who empowered me by showing me how to learn from said mistakes, instead of condemning me or looking down upon me. They showed me how to forgive myself, heal and move forward. THAT is the type of help to which I refer! THAT is how you show someone what love is and how to love themselves despite their circumstance or mistake! I thought that’s what Jesus did?

      Reply
  8. Natalie B.

    Normalized dysfunction is still dysfunction. The last thing our children, our community needs is validation of this dysfunction. I watched the trailor of this “show” last night with my significant other, his brother and his brother’s son and I was thoroughly disgusted, then saddened by the portion of the trailor where this man’s daughter’s expressed their hurt at the perception that he was choosing his girlfriend over them– and he was. He was unapologetic and indignant towards their feelings because he has never had to be responsible for his actions, and the reason why he has never had to take responsibility for his actions is largely due to the mindset of the young woman who penned this piece.

    “… just so you know when we were together kids just kept popping up. He lied. I didn’t know the full story until we were well on our way to being completely in each other’s lives. He lied.”

    He lied. He lied and this young woman knowing this man was capable of such great deceit then decided to bring another human being into this world with a man of such low character. Yes, she chose to remain in this relationship, then she chose to engage in intercourse without the benefit of contraception, and then she chose to further perpetuate this madness with a man who didn’t thought so little of the children he already had that he didn’t admit their existence to her.

    Sounds like great father material to me.

    However eloquently this young woman shared her situation, however she tries to normalize this phenomena and describe it as a “blended family” these situations are detrimental and dysfunctional and as a community a line must be drawn in the sand for the community’s sake. The line for me is making sure that advertisers that buy ad time around this nonsense know my displeasure of it, and that I will take my shopping power to their competitors. The line for me also means continuing to have hard conversations with the young women in my life, many of whom are already mothers, and expressing tough love to them about bringing children into the world without the benefit of marriage; if you are going to be sexually active, be responsible enough to use contreception, and choose partners that respect you and themselves. Is it painful to have these conversations with young women? Yes, but scripture commands us to speak the truth in love, and frankly we haven’t been doing that when it comes to the “baby mama/baby daddy” issue, and I personally feel that it is high time for us to do so.

    As for the young woman that penned this piece, you are obviously an intelligent, gifted writer, but no amount of eloquence can make situations such as yours and Shawty Lo’s okay. To attempt to rationalize these situations and equate them with slavery is insulting to our ancestors. They didn’t have a choice, and they died so we would have the freedom to choose. I just find it sad that as a community we are choosing so poorly.

    Reply
  9. Uche

    This is the lowest form of ‘entertainment’ but this isn’t about blaming external forces for the choices that these people have made to be part of this nonsense. Their mantra is clearly to ‘get that money’ by whatever means necessary, no matter how much they have to debase themselves. The fact that they don’t see anything shameful about telling the whole world about how they were all foolish enough to get impregnated by the same man says it all. I’m not even going to get started on the man responsible!

    To ‘A Fan’ – I hear you on the name calling thing but apart from that what I am hearing in your writing is a lot of excuses for shameful behaviour. The whole ‘Baby Mama’ and ‘Baby Daddy’ situation is caused largely (but not exclusively) by irresponsible people who unfortunately think with the crotches as opposed to their heads. There is no excuse for this ridiculous behaviour. People who are prone to living their lives this way need to be educated to discover their self-respect, self-worth and dignity – I don’t care how common it is for people to have children with multiple partners, it is NOT normal or decent behaviour.

    Reply
  10. Michele

    Eloquent prose will not transform a specious argument into the truth. The truth is that our sisters, daughters, and cousins have become willing dupes of sexual predation. I don’t believe for a moment that this anonymous writer fell in love, she was seduced. If she can’t figure that out, how will she be able to teach that lesson to her child?
    I am quite tired of the self-righteous attempts by voluntary “baby mammas” to shame the critics of their unwise choices by holding up their children as shields. Of course we love and care for the children. It is just too bad that the children are being raised by women who are themselves poor examples of self-control and personal integrity. Was anonymous’ five minutes of pleasure an effective exchange for her child’s life with just half a family and most likely economic insecurity?

    Reply
    1. The Author of The Article

      Actually, yes, Michelle. Those five minutes were highly worth it. Some people wallow in a situation, some are transformed by it. I’ve never had a mentality of staying down and this was no different.

      Reply
  11. Ruth Jones

    My message is , and a lot of what I have read is ridiclous about slavery and such, We have just for gotten God No morals any more. and Gerry Springer is not the word of God that tells us how to live. That lady that does not give her name has no excuse for her behavior If you didn’t know he had several , baby mammas, where is your pride? You didn’t have to get pregnant, something is missing here, is it, do what you see monkey do? there are all kinds of birth control on the market, and you didn’t have to get pregnant. What you and those people on T.V. you call your Bible is our problem. I find it disgusting, but why complain, this is what you are doing. If you was in love, why not say lets get married, this is what a person with pride would do. I am a member of an organization called, Let’s Ban Illegitimate Birth in America, We have a phrase,Marriage first children later.

    Reply
    1. Tooblique

      Ban illegitimate births??? You can’t be serious? Birth control does sometimes fail, and people sometimes are going to make bad choices. And in that instance, should a person abort? Put the child up for adoption? Right, because killing a baby because it would be born in an inconvenient scenario or splitting us up even more is going to solve the problems we have in the black family! It takes a lot more than just marriage to create happy, healthy kids! People with pride admit they made a mistake, learn from it, and help others not make the same mistake. What you are talking about has NOTHING to do with pride! I’m ashamed of anyone in my community with this type of destructive attitude!

      Reply
  12. The Author of The Article

    To All: My statement about slavery was to put how the love of our people USED to be. No, the problems presented in slavery weren’t choices. I know that. But the way we solved them TOGETHER was a choice. I don’t see that here. Hopefully, someone understands this. We have a whole system of young men in jails right now. They DID the crime no matter what the system did to keep them in jail longer. But when they are released we should cover them and help them grow, yes? I’m saying let’s give some love to our fellow men and women and help them move forward. Stop condemning people because before you got that soapbox you were definitely rolling in some mud yourselves. Someone forgave you. Someone didn’t make you the poster child for bringing down the whole race. It has to start somewhere. And I don’t see that coming from this forum in enough instances.

    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      You know I want to thank you for sharing your story. You are discussing ill choices made in your youth and speaking of moving forward from those circumstances and learning to do better. I think many of your critics missed that point. They are speaking and reacting to you as though you are advocating this lifestyle when in fact you are asking that these individuals not be condemned but be loved and nurtured. Accepting doesn’t mean accepting poor choices, it means keeping a door open so they can explore better alternatives. It means not hardening our hearts towards them but allowing them to learn from their mistakes naturally. If you have a kid and you are unprepared you will struggle to make ends meet. That is a natural consequence. That is lesson enough but the scorn and venom spouted here comes from a very different place. It comes from fear. Fear that each person who looks like you that makes a mistake will somehow be a reflection on you.

      Reply
  13. Kim

    Why oh why do we need another reality show especially about a man and a bunch of women who knew he had an extremely amount of children to begin with. These women are making not just black women but women in general look bad just like in some of the other reality shows.Why can’t we have a positive show on women. We never see the men acting a fool ike this on TV.

    Reply
  14. Tooblique

    I don’t know why I’m so surprised by the responses here, especially by “church going folk”. In my hometown, 5 women from the same church, ranging in age from 16-32, gave birth within 3 months of each other. Who was baby daddy? Pastor was! You would think Pastor would have been a bit more careful, particularly since his own daddy did the same thing when he was Pastor of the church. And what did the church do on both occasions? Took turns at the pulpit condemning these women to hell for fornicating, and shunned them from the church until they could be “proper women of God”. They essentially told these women that they were already terrible moms for what they did, and they would never amount to anything. Meanwhile, Pastor just sat there, looking out the stain glass window at his Caddy being detailed in the church parking lot! The irony was that all the babies born were girls. I still wonder what kind of example of a man HE was to those girls, and what the likelihood is that they will fall prey to the same kind of devil their mothers did. What a sorry example of Christs love and mercy, and what pitiful examples of human beings that congregation turned out to be! I’m basically seeing the same thing here. I guess those women were supposed to hang their heads in shame (just as some would like the author of this letter to do), and Pastor was to be left alone to spread his seed, because that’s what men are supposed to do…..right? I don’t like the premise of the show, and I will not be watching it. And I don’t really have a dog in this fight since I’m not a baby momma. But at least I’m smart enough to realize that it will take more than criticism and shouting “nuclear family” to fix this problem. I’ve never seen one example of a problem being fixed by condemning those who created the problem. Perhaps some should remove the planks from their own eye before trying to remove the speck of dust from someone else’s eye! I’m glad the author wrote this. Its just too bad the message is being ignored because some would prefer to focus on the messenger!

    Reply
    1. Rene Syler

      So, just to clarify, you are comparing the people here who had a differing opinion from this woman to a “man of God” who basically committed statutory rape?

      Reply
        1. Tooblique

          “What a sorry example of Christs love and mercy, and what pitiful examples of human beings that congregation turned out to be! I’m basically seeing the same thing here.”

          That is what I wrote, and I’m not sure how much clearer I can write it. I think the congregation behaved pitifully, and I while I respect “differing opinions”, I think essentially, the attitude expressed here by some is the exact same thing. A perfect example of that can be found in the response by Kendra below. Nowhere did the author express that she needed or wanted help raising her child. Nowhere did she express having a welfare queen attitude. She simply said she made a mistake, just like so many other women in her position, and instead of being torn down, she’d like support and “help” to make sure that she and those who come behind her don’t make the same mistake. Instead, that message has been twisted, flipped and turned every which way because some in the “congregation” would prefer to kick her when she’s already down and call her and her child names. As if this somehow reaffirms that they are better than she is, when in fact, it just makes them look hateful and quite pitiful themselves. THAT is what’s wrong with the black community today!

          Reply
          1. Rene Syler

            Hmm, okay, I think that’s still a bit of a stretch. I think there were valid points raised here, on both sides.

  15. Kendra

    There are so many different problems with this lady it is unreal. First of all, it is not the responsibity of the “villiage” to raise your bastard child. It is your responsibilty and his or her father. And the fact that you have to be told that obvious fact is disturbing and proves that you dont not have any sense whatso ever and most likely should not be having children. Having the “villiage” raise your child is the typical thinking of the so call welfare queen. And why are you blaming slavery for you having sex with a iresponsible black man, who is a low life and most likely is carrying four different STDS. How dare you blame our ancestors for your complete lack of morals and stupidity? Shame on you. You are what is wrong with Black today.

    Reply
  16. Denise

    wow… the discourse here is/was not what I have come to expect on this website. I must say to the author of the article that I understand where you sit and I agree that the need to look up, get up, move forward and do better as a people is warranted… and having this show on the air is only the media’s jab at US as a people… I will not be watching… in fact, I flip channels when I see the promos come on… I have no need to expose my children nor be further exposed to such. I know this element in our culture exists and I think we as a people SHOULD have frank, yet respectful conversations regarding this. I respect your choice to respond to the original article and I respect your candor in telling your story. I just hate that you’ve been spoken to in an unkind manner.

    Reply
  17. staccee

    All i read was excuses excuses, so what if don’tknow if the man has kids when you meet him, why not still use birth control if he won’t use a condom? hell you know he ain’t no virgin so why even put yourself in that predicament. she can move on with that stuff because she makes no sense

    Reply
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