If you turn on the television or the radio today, you might find two women fighting in a bar or a song with lyrics censored throughout the majority of the track. As a kid it was easy to find a balance of positive shows that meshed with the negativity. Even though there were songs in the 90’s that were equally as thoughtless and sex driven as ones today, there was self conscious content that portrayed different perspectives of the African American community. There were shows like “A Different World” and “The Cosby Show,” which showcased African Americans in a particularly positive spotlight and encouraged African Americans to seek higher education and successful careers. There were songs that actually had a meaning and artists created works of art from the heart and not just for the money.
Today, it almost seems that we have become so consumed in reality television that we wouldn’t know a good show if it slapped us in the face. This season, BET started a Tuesday night block which featured original scripted shows with the revived sitcom “The Game” and “Let’s Stay Together.” “The Game” already had a solid fan base from its previous stint on the CW network, but viewers simply were not too fond of “Let’s Stay Together.” The first season of the show may not win an Emmy Award, but it is indeed a show that provides a different perspective of African Americans. The main characters juggle relationships and careers as doctors and lawyers. Black Entertainment Television may not always hit the mark, but they are trying.
However, since they aren’t cussing every five seconds and acting like a fool, nobody wants to tune in as they would rather watch a celebrity past her prime, a bunch of bickering women in Atlanta and women trying to mooch off the fame of their ex-basketball boyfriends who couldn’t even manage to make it down the aisle. Songs had a message that didn’t only revolve around activities in the bedroom. They actually educated fans on issues affecting the community, tips on keeping and maintaining a healthy relationship, and even what it means to be in love, which has become a foreign language in society today . The lines have become so blurred as to what constitutes Rap and R&B. Is this what Black America truly wants or is this what Black America accepts?
The fact that a bunch of fans were able to join together and bring a television show back from the dead shows that fans have power. However, sometimes fans are like the woman who does not realize that she holds more power in a relationship than she knows. You only get what you give into. In most cases men can’t get anything that a woman doesn’t give him on her free will. TV and radio works the exact same way. They will not air programs and songs that you are not listening to. However, if you just accept the fact that nothing better is on television to watch and tune in to make the time go by, then nothing will ever change.
In order to get more positive shows and music on the air, we have to support them. Even if there are aspects which we don’t joy, as long as we are tuned in, executives will get the message and deliver more shows which peak our interest. Until we realize this, trash will continue to consume the airways.
Inspirational Quote: “A family can never be united, with its brothers and sisters divided.” – Jenifer Lewis, A Different World