Speaking of “€œignorance,”€ Ms. Johnson’s petition ignores the fact that without the behavior of Shawty and his Mamas, those “€œwhite folks”€ wouldn”€™t be able to show them in a “€œbad light.”€

Another change.org petition, this one by yet another outraged-by-reality black woman named Sabrina Lamb, starts off with the all-caps injunction “€œENOUGH IS ENOUGH!”€ Sadly, Ms. Lamb seems to mean there are too many TV shows like this rather than pondering the idea that Shawty Lo has too many children with too many women. She calls the program a “€œministrel [sic] show”€ that “€œexploits and stereotypes Black children and families.”€

It’s worth noting that several current reality-TV shows depict white people as something far less than paragons of virtue and restraint. There’s the disturbingly popular Here Comes Honey Boo Boo“€”filmed, like All My Babies”€™ Mamas, in Georgia”€”which appears to exist merely to mock a dysgenic clan of mayonnaise-chugging lard-bottomed rural tards. There’s the unacceptably successful Jersey Shore, which recently completed a six-year run depicting East Coast Italian Americans acting like, well, East Coast Italian Americans. Jersey Shore‘s time slot was recently filled by Buckwild, featuring a posse of unhinged and dissolute West Virginia youths. Former West Virginia Governor and current US Senator Joe Manchin sent a letter to MTV in protest of Buckwild‘s alleged disparagement of Appalachian culture, but it didn”€™t prevent the network from launching the show last Thursday. Apparently the media’s Powers That Be aren”€™t swayed by white people and their silly little anti-defamation campaigns.

And although there are other reality shows that deal with prodigious white breeders”€”among them Jon & Kate Plus 8, 19 Kids and Counting, and even the snow-white polygamist Utahns in Sister Wives“€”none of these programs seemed to strike nearly the same nerve as All My Babies”€™ Mamas, especially since the show hasn”€™t even aired yet and may forever remain stillborn.

Part of this may be due to the fact that these variants on All My White Children represent a relative cultural rarity”€”white women produce fewer children per capita than black women, and while only a quarter or so of white babies are born out of wedlock, the black quotient hovers somewhere around 70%. While some might attribute the latter statistic to the unpleasant legacy of slavery and Jim Crow, this doesn”€™t explain why the black illegitimacy rate was only around 22% in 1960. But one must never question whether the Civil Rights movements of the 1960s and the ensuing perpetual welfare state may have played a role in destroying black familial solidarity.

It’s hard to argue that All My Babies”€™ Mamas constitutes stereotyping since it shows actual people rather than fictional caricatures. Yet while watching snippets from the show’s trailer, it occurred to me that these hyper-fertile real-life modern-day ghetto pigs are far more degraded and enjoy far less “€œupliftment”€ than such self-consciously shuffling black stereotypes of bygone eras such as Stepin Fetchit, Mantan Moreland, and Uncle Remus. No one needs to defame these characters because they defame themselves.

So it appears that the outrage has little to do with the show being unrealistic and everything to do with it being far too realistic. And therefore it must never see the light of day, lest people get the wrong idea”€”in other words, the right idea.

 



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