April 2008


If you live in New York and have been in any subway station (BK’s Atlantic Avenue Stop) or been at home kicking it enjoying reruns of The Wire, you have been unexpectedly hit with New York City Department of Health’s new ad campaign to stop folks from puffing on cancer sticks: Maria and her missing fingers.

See below:

There are two other commercials like this as well.

According to the Health Department, Marie developed Buerger’s disease, a condition that narrows arteries reducing blood flow to the arms and legs. She has lost parts of most fingers, as well as a leg and a part of one foot. Her man also left her because he couldn’t take it anymore.

I do hope that Mayor Bloomberg tricked her off some of his billions or promised to pay her rent for the rest of her natural life, because that is the only way the kid would have put herself on blast like this.

I mean fear tactics are so post/911 circa 2005. They don’t work with the masses. (Me on the other hand they work for sure, I am scared of everything.) People don’t care about their bodies, if they did they wouldn’t cook greens in LARD or eat at Chipotle. So if you think that hardcore smokers give a damn about amputated fingers, bone clippers, holes in their throat, second-hand smoke giving their kids asthma or the threat of being single, you’re nuts.

But people are terrified of you messing with their money.

So here is my thought: Make cigarettes expensive as hell. A pack of Marlboro Lights in New York is already high at $8.50. I say make it $20. And with this recession in full effect, folks will have to choose between light bills or cigarettes, gas or smokes, food or trees.

Now that would be a kick ass PSA. Maria’s kids on television saying that their mother’s addiction was so bad that she used up their college fund because she just “needed to light up after sex.”

Maybe just shaming folks would work.

SHOUTOUT: To my friend Nicole L. who is missing a finger due to a childhood accident, not smoking, although she does smoke.  This post does not pertain to your situation–your missing finger is how i say, “Freaky sexy!”

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(Disclaimer: I know that everyone is talking about Miley Cyrus. So when in Rome…)

Hannah Montana megastar Miley Cyrus is doing damage control by apologizing for her recent photo spread in Hollywood culture bible Vanity Fair for a semi-nude picture of her taken by famed photographer Annie Lebowtiz. Cyrus claims she was manipulated by Lebowitz while Lebowitz is giving the “bitch please” defense claiming that everyone was happy and approved of the art including Cyrus and her parents.

Lebowitz also stated that people are misinterpreintg her work. So tell me this: When is it ever appropriate for an artist to suggest that a 15-year old girl pose shirtless while being wrapped in sheet rocking just-got-f***ed hair? Never. Shame on Lebowitz for not knowing better, for not falling back for a second and thinking to herself “Now I got critisized for the Jennifer Hudson Vogue spread last year for making her look like a lifeless whale, I got really shit on for the LeBron James-Gisele Bundchen Vogue cover for reinforcing stereotypes of black men being primitive apes…so maybe I should be easy with this little girl and do something that will keep my name out of the news.” Or maybe this was her plan all along.

But regardless of the intent, we as a society cannot forget that although Cyrus may have Julia Roberts’ money, she is still a child.

Now I respect Vanity Fair, but it doesn’t get a pass because it’s Vanity Fair, just like Lebowitz doesn’t get a pass because she is one of the best photographers of the 21st century. A foul up is a foul up and they need to stop hiding behind art’s sake and man up. This picture whether splashed on a MySpace page or on the cover of Time is equally problematic.

And I know that people are saying, “Where were the parents? They should have been there.” Who knows where they were, but if they weren’t there, shame on them for trusting a capitalist magazine to have their daughter’s best interest in mind. Now if they were there and they didn’t say anything, this could be a product of one of two things. Either they don’t give a damn like Lindsay Lohan’s mom aka White Oprah OR they got caught up in the moment listening to elitist folks telling these hillbillies, they don’t know fine art and that this is what is people really want to see. It’s this same mentality that got Andre Leon Talley to talk Jennifer Hudson into wearing that hideous gold lamet shrug-thing at the Oscars in 2007. You keep telling someone, “You’re great, you’re fabulous, give it to the camera. this is what’s up” and POOF! You have a child in tears, embarrassed parents, Disney with their panties in a twist and a major corporation i.e. Conde Nast making millions off of the fallout.

Yet this one incident speaks to a larger problem in this country: the sexualization of young women at way too early of an age. There are 10 year-olds wearing thongs and getting Brazilian waxes along with high schoolers who give better head than Karrine Steffans. We have music videos with naked women having money thrown on them, reality shows with spoiled brats who will do anything for attention, ads like House of Dereon For Girls pimping 3 year olds in f**k-me pumps, commercials like CW ‘s Gossip Girl showing kids riding each other, movies like Superbad that display a teen character begging some dork to put his “cock” in her, the list could go on and on.

Do we have any idea what we are doing to the psyches of young girls in this country? We are telling them that being overtly sexual is more important than being articulate, or being goofy or being smart or being REAL. We are encouraging girls to engage in sexual activities that they are not mentally or emotionally ready for and all we can offer them is abstinence-only education, so they have no idea how to protect themselves. Then we wonder why one in four teen girls has an STD. And parents are just as messed up as the media–stop being your kid’s homegirl and be her mamma.

We have fallen pop stars, knocked up teen idols and hairless vaginas plastered in every magazine. And when young girls finally have someone they can look up to, we ruin it by letting greed take over common sense and decency. Oh well, VF will get what it wanted: to sell more copies than Suri “Alien” Cruise’s debut and Jennifer Aniston “Boo-hoo Brad left me” issues combined. I hope it was all worth it.

I know that many of us are not feeling the po-po right now, especially NYPD, but I felt that I had to give props to the baaaaadest black female cop on television, Sgt Carol Mason on A&E’s The First 48.

What makes her so damn fierce? It may be her fiery long red fake nails and her luxurious Yak that is laid every week. Or maybe it’s the fact that she plugs in a Gold N’ Hot iron at her desk to curl her hair before scooping folks up in Memphis. She is a hood mess and I love her for it.

Here is an example why. This is what I like to call “Gangsta Lean.”

Priceless. Did you peep the fur and the heels?

Because the weather is about to break and we are going to be wearing less, some men believe that commenting on your “ass in them shorts” is not only appropriate, but a compliment that we should be grateful for. And God forbid you ignore them and keep it moving. I have never been called a bitch so many times in my life until I moved to Brooklyn.

Sorry Nicole P, I know this is your future husband,  but I just couldn’t help myself–basketball player Chris Paul really is too fine. He shouldn’t be able to walk down the damn street, he is that fly. Added bonus, he doesn’t sound like a slave when being interviewed by the press.

I am literally blushing while watching Dallas play New Orleans right now. I may have outgrown my “athlete phase” ions ago, but for this one, I could morph into a bottle chaser STAT. (Kidding, sort of)

BTW: Did anyone see my man Jamie Hector on The Game today? I was squealing.

Someone remind you of your jeep? Nominate him!

CNN reported that this morning in a courtroom in New York, the verdict was handed down for the three police officers who killed Sean Bell in 2006: NOT GUILTY.

A judge acquitted three New York Police Department detectives of all charges Friday morning in the shooting death of an unarmed man in a 50-bullet barrage, hours before he was to be married.

Detectives Michael Oliver and Gescard Isnora were found not guilty of charges of manslaughter, assault and reckless endangerment in the death of Sean Bell, 23, and the wounding of two of his friends.

Detective Marc Cooper was acquitted of reckless endangerment.

Justice Arthur Cooperman said he found problems with the prosecution’s case. He said some prosecution witnesses contradicted themselves, and he cited prior convictions and incarcerations of witnesses.

He also cited the demeanor of some witnesses on the stand.

As the judge read his decision, Nicole Paultre Bell — Sean Bell’s fiancee before his death — ran from the courtroom, saying, “I’ve got to get out of here.”

The announcement immediately sparked anger among some in the crowd outside the courthouse, but the protests were generally orderly.

One woman shouted at a black police officer, “How can you be proud to wear that uniform? Stand down! Stop working for the masters!”

Patrick Lynch, president of the New York Police Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association, said “there’s no winners, there’s no losers” in the case.

“We still have a death that occurred. We still have police officers that have to live with the fact that there was a death involved in their case,” Lynch said.

Can someone explain to how does the demeanor of a witness and the judge not liking it has anything to do with this case? And so because you have priors you cannot be a reliable witness? How many white men have committed crimes, got off because daddy had money and had to testify in a court later down the road? Thousands and so because they don’t have a record, they are all good? I really would wonder that if this had happened to one of the Johnson & Johnson heirs, and the po po shot him up like this, would the verdict have been the same? Oh wait, this never would have happened to him because he could have just went to an exclusive members-only club like Soho House and did whatever the hell he wanted to do. If cops are so concerned with drugs, go to a place like that. THERE IS COKE EVERYWHERE. Go shoot up some actors and models and what not.

So let’s do a rundown of who has gotten thrown in jail in the past couple of years: Martha Stewart, Lil’ Kim, Foxy Brown, Michael Vick, T.I., Wesley Snipes, Remy Ma, for starters–and you mean to tell me that three police officers who shot the hell up out of this young boy based on a hunch, WHO WAS UNARMED, get off scott-free, like that type of force is okay. As my friend Kenyon just said, “I really thought these cop acquittals went out of style after Diallo.” I guess it’s making a comeback.

Big ups to the black woman who called Marc Cooper out. Slave mentality is not a good look.

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