- Black Men being Hard together
In mid-April 2009, Little Bow Wow told a “funny story”, which was over a live web-chat, about not wanting to get his haircut by a barber that he assumed was gay. His comments sparked some controversy among gay media when his remarks were leaked. One such critique came from video-blogger BScott who is this self-proclaimed “gay as hell” “pretty man.” In his original post, BScott, took Bow Wow to task over his homophobia and alleged closet status (funny as hell in a problematic way).
Afterwards and not in direct response to BScott, Bow Wow posted a video response to explain that his words were misinterpreted or taken out of context. When you watch the video, Bow Wow struggles with saying the word gay and he set-ups, hopefully not intentionally, this imagined split between being gay and being a man. He says: “I’m a man. I’m a man. I love women to death.” Then he goes on to acknowledge that in the business he works in “it’s a lot of gays.” He elaborates that he works “with them and see ‘em all the time.” He goes on to say, “I don’t dislike gay people. You know what I sayin’. Come on like, what I look like…I just don’t want no other man touching me.” Bow Wow wants the audience to believe that his concern is not because he assumes the barber is gay, but that the barber is a man, which as he said “I don’t want no other man touching me.”
Yet in the above picture, Bow-Wow is okay standing half naked with half naked soul-ja boy slightly behind and to side of his body (not to mention soul-ja boy’s extended arm that brushes/rests across/around Bow Wow’s shoulder). I am not suggesting that there is a homosexual relationship in the picture, but I am suggesting that Bow Wow is okay with certain other men touching him and his half-naked person. If this is true, then it would mean that in the case of the barber it was not about the barber being a man, but it was about Bow Wow’s assumption regarding the barber’s sexuality, which made Bow Wow decline the haircut.
In the second video response, BScott informs little Bow Wow (and others) that they need to judge people on the merit of their “character” and “services.” He rightfully faults Hip Hop for significantly contributing to the current culture in which it is okay to discriminate against gays. BScott expresses a deep concern about the rampant homophobia in every community particularly the HIP-HOP, and Black ones. BScott expresses this noticeable prevalent mentality in black and Hip Hop communities “That it is okay to call a gay guy a faggot; it’s okay to discriminate against a gay guy because he’s gay; it’s okay to be uncomfortable; it’s okay to be like oh-yo son that’s gay or yo-yeah you’re a faggot – as if it is something bad.” BScott pinpoints a very troubling reality about hip-hop and black communities’ impact on Black LGBT people’s life chances as valued members of the black community. Starting at minute 6:04, he talks about the impact of hateful words and about the two child suicides, which happened at different schools, because of other children picking-on, ostracizing and marginalizing these two male children.