Month: September 2007

September 29, 2007 / / Uncategorized
September 28, 2007 / / Uncategorized
September 28, 2007 / / Uncategorized
September 28, 2007 / / Uncategorized
September 27, 2007 / / Uncategorized
September 27, 2007 / / Uncategorized


by Racialicious special correspondent Wendi Muse

Yesterday morning I was a bit reluctant to get out of bed and start my day.

Okay, VERY reluctant, so much so that I had to rely on the luscious sounds of early-morning video wakeup via the channel that only plays music between 4 am and 8 am before it mentally assaults you for the rest of the day with reality shows despite having the word “music” in its name.

Anyway, I was trying desperately to find something cheerful to wear in order to distract my co-workers from the less than excited expression I was most likely to bear for the rest of the day due to poor sleep when I noticed there was a very dark-skinned black woman on television with natural hair who was over the age of 40. I thought to myself, “Am I dreaming? A black woman in a music video who is fully dressed, whose face I see instead of her ba-donk-a-donk, and completely sans 10 pounds of extensions? Something must be wrong.” I then noticed more beautiful brown-skinned people in the background listening to the woman speak and thought for a moment, considering that I heard no music, that I had somehow switched the channel to CNN without realizing it.

But I hadn’t. I pressed the “info” button on the remote and the screen read “MTV: Video Wakeup 7:00 am – 8:00 am.” Hmmm…what was going on? A few seconds later, I was greeted to the sounds of Fall Out Boy, the quasi-emo-pseudo-punk-hipster-teenie-pop band of “Dance Dance” fame and whose lead singer Pete Wentz has apparently been showing his pinga all over town. Despite all of the skinny-jean dropping, it looks like the group has been up to some good. Their video for “I’m Like a Lawyer with the Way I’m Always Trying to Get You Off (Me & You)” does a shockingly good job of what Bono and the Vanity Fair crew seem to have a few problems getting right: humanizing black Africans.

Fall Out Boy does a few things many other celebrities cum activists sometimes neglect to do (either out of ignorance, a bad publicist, or total lack of care…I can’t quite put my finger on it) and that an equally concerned American audience tends to forget:

1. They establish that Africa is a continent in which there are many countries
The video takes place in Uganda, to be more specific, the Gulu Township in Northern Uganda, which, according to the film Invisible Children, a documentary that focuses on the forced conscription of children into the Lords Resistance Army, has become a place of refuge to avoid being kidnapped into military service. By taking two seconds to note the specific location in which the video takes place, F.O.B. (or the really smart people who did the research for the video) avoids falling into the trap of the “hey look, there are problems in the country of Africa!” camp. Thank goodness for that. Maybe now some of the kids who watch MTV on the regular will be more likely to pull out a map and locate Uganda or maybe “the South Africa, such as.” Read the Post Making Africans Human, One Video at a Time

September 27, 2007 / / Uncategorized
September 27, 2007 / / Uncategorized