Keri Hilson, Ciara, and “Appropriate” Sexuality

by Latoya Peterson

So, I started hearing some rumbling about Keri Hilson’s video for her song “The Way You Love Me.” Video mildly NSFW, audio definitely NSFW:

And the lyrics?

Yeah, you can see – just where we wanna be
I got that kinda lovin’ that’ll keep you off the streets
Yeah, you can see – just where we wanna be
The way you love me the way you love me (Fuck Me)
Yeah, that’s me – just where we wanna be
I got that kinda pussy that’ll keep you off the streets
Yeah, that’s me – just where we wanna be
The way you love me the way you love me (Fuck Me)

Love me, love me – it’s the way you love me
Touch me, touch me – it’s the way you touch me
Fuck me, fuck me – it’s the way you fuck me
(It’s) the way you love me baby you got me goin’ crazy

Now, as far as I can tell, it’s a fairly standard music video, perhaps a little more risque than some. Much of the drama seems to stem from the fact that Hilson dropped the euphemisms and demanded a good screw.

But to be honest, I wonder if people are reacting to the vulgarity or the person saying it. It reminds me of how shocked I was when Renina pointed out that Ciara’s video for “Ride” had been banned from BET for being too explicit.

Renina writes:

What does it mean that BET refuses to play Ride because they arguably find it too sexually suggestive?

Why is this video banned (or simply not being played) but the 5011 other rap videos with ubiquitous half nude, anonymous video vixens, and video extra’s get major rotation?

Here are some of the songs that you can vote for this week on BET.com

Bobby V. ft Plies “Phone #.”

Rick Ross “Aston Martin Music.”

Gucci Mane “Remember When.”

Is Black women’s sexuality being displayed on her own terms a threat that compels BET to react with censorship.

“Wait till you See my Dick” is cool but Ride ain’t? I mean blood, the simulated orgy scene? #ummhmm. #youain’tgottaLieCraig.

Sexual double standard?

Here’s the Ride video, btw:

The controversy also reminds me of a Paris Hilton quote – that she considers herself sexy, but not sexual. Does it mean that women are instructed to carefully toe that line, or be censored for obscenity?

Personally, I’m slightly amazed at the fact that black women are allowed to be on display in all sorts of sexually suggestive ways, but if they dare to vocalize their own desire (or in Ciara’s case, vocalize their prowess), are seen as worthy of censorship.

Hilson speaks to Perez about not apologizing for the explicit language and saying that the album was about being in a room with her girls and “yelling all the shit that we really say.”

Thoughts, readers?