Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Halle Berry, Lauryn Hill and our Relationships with Men.

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With an innocent comment about how Halle Berry is off, SJ inspired me to write about Halle, Lauryn and the challenges of being an adult Black woman dealing with their men sh*t in public. My response is that she isn't any more off than any other woman to a greater or lesser extent.

Then the conversation got good.

He began to speak on how Halle represents an americanized Black mans standard of Black female beauty and she still couldn't keep Eric Benet tight.
Of course. I got livid. The inner feminist got riled. Women get together and break up with dudes all the time. White hollywood women do it, me and my girls do it, so why should Halle be married to another standard?

Yes, she is visible and a standard of beauty in many quarters which places her on a pedestal, but Eric, Wesley, David, put her through some sh*t the same way men have put US through some. Trill talk.

My rational was that, with regard to Eric, his career was poppin', but not like hers and he was a allegedly a sex addict. Trust me. You want to ruin a relationship. Let one of the partners be addicted to something. Come to think about it, there is also the presumption that Wesley and or David assualted her with physical violence so you KNOW something was wrong with her. Implicit in that statement is th
e presumption that a womans beauty should insulate her from being beaten. And if your partner is assaulting you that some how YOU are culpable.

And a lot of people, a lot of Black people, have been on some old "Halle look good and still can't keep a man"as if being attractive can help you KEEP someone.

You can only KEEP someone who WANTS to be kept. << ---Game for free.
And a major problem with that rationale is that it presumes that if you are an unattractive woman, than you should expect to get violently assaulted. This thinking is so dangerous because it totally absolves the person of committing the act of responsibility.

Which brings me to Lauryn. I never liked the Fugees. I just didn't like her. Partially, cuz I was a nappy and a b-girl, so people just expected that I would. Plus rockin' the natural before it was being showcased in Essence every month caused some aches in m.dot's newly nappy pioneering heart. So I was like nah, Im cool. Plus at the time, I was crazy conservative with regard to what I thought was appropriate levels of skin that a Black Woman should be showing in public as an entertainer. Clearly, that has changed.

With regard to Lauryn and Rohan, it is really easy to be dismissive of her having her babies, embracing that career while putting the other one with Sony on hold.
Bear in mind that this is a culture that resents mothers and is so f*cking ambivalent about mommas with careers that its criminal.


Ms. L. can have her babies. Sing her concerts at Wingate field. Tease us with Fugee reunions all she wants. She grown and she somebodies momma.

Just like Outkast, we will never get the old version of them back. And honestly its selfish. Selfish because it doesn't take into consideration that artists break us off something and then move on. Can't be asking n*ggas for albums from 15 years ago. Thats a wrap.

Can Halle and Lauryn live?

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Why are people so rough on L?

Why so much resentment for how she handled her career?

Why the hate for Halle and her white dude?

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24 comments:

She Hate Me said...

Why are people so rough on L?

Why so much resentment for how she handled her career?

Why the hate for Halle and her white dude?
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I can answer all three questions in one shot.

Society raised us to expect the best from them.

And right now, the best isn't anywhere to be found.


I'm so rough on L because I expct more from her. Sure, she had some rough times, but I expect her to look better than what she's been looking lately.

I expect her to put an album out on par with Miseducation, if not better.

I expect her to do better than she's been doing, because she was all about bettering yourself, loving yourself, and it looks to me like Lauren is doing neither right now. She handled her career like it wasn't a lead priority, and while I CAN agree somewhat with that, don't come back almost 10 years later, with this whole new album mess.


As for Halle...


Love may be blind, but so is Justice, and sometimes, even Justice is wrong. I'm all for love, I'm all for finding that someone, but come on, I'm expecting Halle to be with someone that doesn't look like a extra in that movie with them cowboys in it.


Maybe society raised me wrong....


P.S. Start using your AIM. Please. Thank you.

neo said...

As far as music is concerned ppl and the media placed Lauryn on a pedestal she was too weak to stand on, she was heralded as the best female emcee of our generation a bit too soon and given a crown her head fell under. Hence the standard was set too high and ppl have been expecting her to put something out on that level. Its the same problem Nas has faced for over a decade...

Not to mention her relationship w/ Wyclef didn't help matters. I honestly believe she never really healed up properly since that r/ship was on and off for quite a while. Her r/ship with Rohan who also has a wife (history repeating itself? see: wyclef) is messed up. Lauryn has 3 kids from one man who has kids with another and is still married to that woman.

So ppl are aggy 'cos L boogie seems to be in denial and or living in delusion about the choices she's made in r/ships..not to mention the stories/rumors about trying to take credit for stuff she didn't do musically....Rohan I believe was the worst thing that could've happened to her, not having a child...yes the industry can be callous but its not because L had kids that ppl got mad..nor the time she took off..everyone wanted her to come back so bad and were waiting and hoping until when she finally came back and..she's treating the fans like garbage (see: reports from her live shows in diff cities)..

As for Halle and Lauryn when it comes to r/ships:

Sometimes black women just make bad choices in men, why can't we simply just admit this and move on? For every dude out there that chooses to hit a woman or bash a woman verbally there's a good man who'll treat her like the queen she ought to be treated...that's how I see it.

The way I see it Halle had a bad string of r/ships for various reasons. Those dudes ought to be blamed fair enough but we can't up here and absolve Halle completely from making the same bad choice three times over. Added to the fact that there are three sides to a story, we only got to hear Halle's side..'cos she was the bigger star and being a woman by default makes the dude the 'bad guy' automatically...whether ppl wanna agree or not its how things are in this society as I've seen.

M.Dot. said...

Society raised us to expect the best from them.

And right now, the best isn't anywhere to be found.
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Thats subjective.You have NO idea of what is going on in her personal life that impacts her ability to create art.


I'm so rough on L because I expct more from her. Sure, she had some rough times, but I expect her to look better than what she's been looking lately.
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Look better.
She is a momma that MADE PROLIFIC ART AS A F*CKING teenager with one of the best selling groups, rap or not, of all times.

No win here ock.

I expect her to put an album out on par with Miseducation, if not better.
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Thats the problem.
We as fans have to accept what they give. Trill talk. Artists are people too.

I expect her to do better than she's been doing, because she was all about bettering yourself, loving yourself, and it looks to me like Lauren is doing neither right now.
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Oh please. You are in no position to say these things.
1. You ever rock w/ a married lady who was a member of your group?

She handled her career like it wasn't a lead priority.
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Are you kidding me? She had a family blood. Anita Baker anyone. Why is there this unwillingness to recognize who FAMILY becomes the priority after you pop 'em out.

Do you have kids?

and while I CAN agree somewhat with that, don't come back almost 10 years later, with this whole new album mess.
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Its not mess. She has been vocal about how she progressed as an artist and how after she HAD the first baby, she felt like she wasn't able to connect with him/ hold him for fear of ruining her blouse.....because she had to go on stage.


As for Halle...

I'm expecting Halle to be with someone that doesn't look like a extra in that movie with them cowboys in it.
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Even after Eric Wesley and David.
Interesting.

Black women just gotta stay wichall even when you continually act up.


Maybe society raised me wrong....
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?????????


P.S. Start using your AIM. Please. Thank you.
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duly noted.

M.Dot. said...

As far as music is concerned ppl and the media placed Lauryn on a pedestal she was too weak to stand on, she was heralded as the best female emcee of our generation a bit too soon.
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She was and she is.
She Just NEEDED a different support network.


Its the same problem Nas has faced for over a decade...
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It comes from an unwillingness to accept that THIS artist brought forth this piece of work now deal with it.

Not to mention her relationship w/ Wyclef didn't help matters.
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No shit. As a woman, your partner choice can make or break you, and it can really break you.

I honestly believe she never really healed up properly since that r/ship was on and off for quite a while.
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Very possible.

Her r/ship with Rohan who also has a wife (history repeating itself? see: wyclef) is messed up.


Lauryn has 3 kids from one man who has kids with another and is still married to that woman.
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Good connection you made.

So ppl are aggy 'cos L boogie seems to be in denial and or living in delusion about the choices she's made in r/ships..not to mention the stories/rumors about trying to take credit for stuff she didn't do musically
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Yeah. Thats litigation.
If she was going to take the credit then she shold have HAD an A-1 executive producer manage that. Consider this, if the album flopped, you think n*ggas woulda been so aggie of the credits. Negatory.

everyone wanted her to come back so bad and were waiting and hoping until when she finally came back and..she's treating the fans like garbage (see: reports from her live shows in diff cities)..
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She comes Late.
But thats hip hop.
But garbage.
Because she wants to experiement.
uuuuh negatory.
Not cosigning on that..
Artists need wiggle room and you ain't gonna get who you had 10 years ago.

Do you expect yourself or your momma or dad to be the person they were 10 years ago.
Then why should L be expected to do so?


Sometimes black women just make bad choices in men, why can't we simply just admit this and move on?
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Yup. But that goes for all women.

Added to the fact that there are three sides to a story,
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Speaking of three sides, I think that Oprah's dad is writing a book about her.

And Terry McMillans ex husband, who has come out as being gay is writing a book about her.

Im drafting my contract RIGHT NOW.

No books about M.dot. Unless Im co-authorin' :)

She Hate Me said...

And I just got owned.



Pwned, even. (l33t speak, FTW)

I'm going back to my cave. With a bottle of Patrón Silver. And a Cohiba.

neo said...

What if I decide to put you in a song m? I gotta gi you royalties? heckouttahere! :-D

I think L put out one of the best albums musically ever but saying she's the greatest femcee, I'd like for her to drop at least another album...to solidify that in my mind...I mean Biggie had at least two great and arguably classic lp's under his belt...

I understand L's need to grow. I don't want her stunted, I'm not as a fan expecting any of the very same stuff she put out years ago creatively, however I would like to see some focus, some dedication at least on her end that she's committed to doing it for the fans who really have been in her corner. The quickest way to lose an audience is to treat that audience like you're better than them...(see: what 50 cent is currently facing).

I understand there's a lot of political hoopla as far as what labels will let you put out..this isn't 98 and with record sales declining maybe she'll be best served by quickly dropping joints to get off her contract or just try to break free and go indy. She has the fan base to pull it off..

Anonymous said...

i don't hate on lauryn, she just isn't the same mc who made 'Miseducation'. i remember when i first heard 'Zion' i was like ooooo, here comes a woman not afraid to buck -and- get buck for what we'd say about her for having zion. i luhh'd this girl, i thought, like many fans, lauryn could do no wrong.
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for me, her fall from grace was long before the ghetto clown facepaint or the sketchy interviews in essence
http://www.essence.com/essence/themix/entertainment/0,16109,1149478,00.html
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nah, for me, it was the "Lauryn Hill: Unplugged" album that did it. not only was her voice a fuckin mess, but she accompanied herself on the guitar for every song, poorly. and i'm talking like a dude with six months experience playing the guitar would have shown her ass up something fierce; she plays the same three chords throughout the whole two hours. i wanna jump out a fucking window every time some girl plays 'gotta find peace of mind' for me and tells me its hella deep.
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and aye, even angelina jolie couldn't 'keep' billy bob thornton, and now she's got brad pitt hellaaa sprung.

T DOT said...

Somehow celebrity blurs the fact that, at the end of the day, they're both still human.

Be a part of the best selling rap group album, then your solo destroys everything on grammy night, and the whole world expects you to step it up.

But I love that scene in Block Party "That's where I've been." CLASSIC.

M.Dot. said...

And I just got owned.



Pwned, even. (l33t speak, FTW)

I'm going back to my cave. With a bottle of Patrón Silver. And a Cohiba.
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Aye bay bay.

I got nothing but that m.dot love for ya.

You knows this.

WHen I go hawarrrd. in the comments...most of the time...its out of respect.

However, as per our im convo...your sarcasm....lets just say that your disclaimer is a great idea.

M.Dot. said...

she plays the same three chords throughout the whole two hours. i wanna jump out a fucking window every time some girl plays 'gotta find peace of mind' for me and tells me its hella deep.
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I am NOT a big Fugees fan nor a Miseducation fan.

BUT.
My rationale is when YOU PUT FORTH ART that has THAT KIND OF IMPACT, you have earned the right to DIE THE DAY after it has been released or to put out KAKA for the rest of your life.

I think we, have an UNHEALTHY sense of entitlement when it comes to WHAT WE expect from artists.

M.Dot. said...

But I love that scene in Block Party "That's where I've been." CLASSIC.
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goes to you tube to look for block party scenes.

T DOT said...

goes to you tube to look for block party scenes.

------------------------
I got you. :)

http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xobpw_fugees-block-party_music

neo said...

As an artist I dunno if I completely agree with that sentiment m.dot. I do agree that some fans have an unhealthy sense of entitlement 'cos they feel they KNOW the artist through and through when really they only connect with the art not the artiste'.

I mean you strive to be creative, the ppl you share your art with are/can be considered as fans but you just don't sneeze into a mic and say, "well yeah homey that's my full album" and just expect them to 'accept' it..as an artist there is such a thing as artistic integrity and merit. You've got to live up to your end of the deal as an artist if not then stop producing art, really that simple. What's most important about any and all art is being true to the person within. Is this art truly a complete expression of what it is I wanted to portray to the audience? To ppl around? If not what can I do to get that expression out better? Learn this instrument better, rap this line better, get a better palette?

We can debate this all day but my hope is that L is being true to herself if she's playing only three chords throughout. Because that could mean either (a) she really can't play the guitar THAT well and hence either needs to learn more or get someone who knows HOW to play help convey her msg b) option a but just too proud to let someone help (c) she just loves those chords and those are the best she feels can convey said message..I'm good if its option (c)

M.Dot. said...

but you just don't sneeze into a mic and say, "well yeah homey that's my full album" and just expect them to 'accept' it.
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I am not saying that we should co-sign on a sneeze.

What I am saying is that when you make on of the most meaningful albums of THE DECADE, you can be experimental for another DECADE and no one has a right to say sh*t.

You've got to live up to your end of the deal as an artist if not then stop producing art, really that simple.
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This isn't very Christian.


(a) she really can't play the guitar THAT well and hence either needs to learn more or get someone who knows HOW to play help convey her msg
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So what if she is.

She could play 1.5 cords and will still BE MORE REALER, than 85 percent of the sh*t that has come out SINCE her album came out.

Her skin. The locks. The B.girl.ness. Her performaning.

Think about it.
Its JUST HER UP ON STAGE.

AND WOMEN, IN THE PUBLIC EYE GO THROUGH IT ALL THE TIME.
EITHER with their MEN and or THEIR DRUGS.
Amy
Whitney
Brittney
Lindsey
Mariah
Mary
AND
Lauryn


^^^I feel a book outline coming on.

(c) she just loves those chords and those are the best she feels can convey said message..I'm good if its option (c)
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THAT is the most reasonable *wink* think you have said this morning.

LOl.

HI neo.

neo said...

This isn't very Christian.
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It's un-christian to do things half-heartedly. and I quote, "what your hand findeth to do, do it with ALL YOUR HEART." Need I say more?

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So what if she is.

She could play 1.5 cords and will still BE MORE REALER, than 85 percent of the sh*t that has come out SINCE her album came out.

Her skin. The locks. The B.girl.ness. Her performaning.

Think about it.
Its JUST HER UP ON STAGE.

AND WOMEN, IN THE PUBLIC EYE GO THROUGH IT ALL THE TIME.
EITHER with their MEN and or THEIR DRUGS.
Amy
Whitney
Brittney
Lindsey
Mariah
Mary
AND
Lauryn
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What about her skin? What about her locks? Or are you suggesting there's an undertone of racism involved with her case? I don't get it...

Women in the public eye go through it 'cos *gasp* they're in the PUBLIC EYE. It doesn't matter where you're from if you're a celebrity you're automatically shot into public view, is it right? No but its the reality of celebrity. You can't just suggest its something special 'cos they're women in that case..imo.

It's different if you're trying to keep things private. Lindsay Lohan for instance ain't keeping stuff private...


hello mdot.

M.Dot. said...

Neo.

Im gonna BEAT YOU.


1.You've got to live up to your end of the deal as an artist if not then stop producing art, really that simple.
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My point still remains that it isn't very Christian. The reason I say so is because it doesn't allow her room to experiment, and it presumes that all her music is going to be on miseducation level.

2. I mentioned her hair and her skin because THERE HAS BEEN NO ONE BEFORE OR SINCE, who came with it AS A BROWN SKIN NAPPY and got mainstream recognition.

3.Women in the public eye go through it 'cos *gasp* they're in the PUBLIC EYE.
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I understand that they are in the public eye. However I like to analyze the comments that my peer group and blog readers make. As progressive urban folks, w/ a smidgen of education, the things that we say about THESE WOMEN is indicative of what we think of women as a whole.

4. The weird thing about this whole discussion is that there is a part of you that gets off on the back and forth.<<----Yeah. A b*tch said it. Ock.

Tag. youn'g.

Illaim said...

"Implicit in that statement is the presumption that a womans beauty should insulate her from being beaten And if your partner is assaulting you that some how YOU are culpable."

Wooooahhhh..

I always subscribed to the theory that people attain psychological issues after going thru some trama.. In Ms. Berrys case, David putting his hands on her and Eric acting like a damn fool, pushed her to Cee Lo land, not some barbarian strain of thought of “she asked for it”.

“Bear in mind that this is a culture that resents mothers and is so f*cking ambivalent about mommas with careers that its criminal.”

Very true….. Very Sad

I would say people are so hard on L for to main reasons. 1. She’s fucking amazing as a talent. Forget Femce’s during the 90’s she deserved to be in the whose the best rapper regardless argument. People are greedy and selfish, when you don’t do the bidding others want from you resent oucurs. 2. She fell off…. Okay beauty is in the eye of the beholder..but back in the day I thought she was the perfect women….Ras Kass wanted a women with the body of whore and a mind like Lauren, I just wanted Lauren. Now she look like she gonna ask me for change out side the ABC store.

Halle…. Hmmmmm…

Grrrrr

She lost me after Monsters Ball (peace Ms. Basset) and her best Cuba Gooding Jr impersonation…. I could give a fuck less if she messes with white dudes, but she is Hollywood now in more then the sense of her occupation or location. You can be Bond girl all you want, but she’ll get her wake up call sooner then later.

M.Dot. said...

Cee Lo land
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On floor.
Maybelline running.

Ras Kass wanted a women with the body of whore and a mind like Lauren, I just wanted Lauren.
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A body like a whore or a willingness to ACT like one in bed.

Now she look like she gonna ask me for change out side the ABC store.
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Not cool

BeautyinBaltimore said...

Layrn Hill has problems with men. I think those problems with men have led to the problems and weirdness that we see with Lauryn today. Sometimes I say to myself if only Lauryn could carry men in the same way that Erica Badu does, then maybe she would not be so strung out on love.

I saw you over at the Baduism as a disease post.

texas truth said...

"Sometimes I say to myself if only Lauryn could carry men in the same way that Erica Badu does..."

^^^^

What does that mean?

M.Dot. said...

BIB

Totally forgot about that comment.

You know a "bitch" had to go back and put them ...add a comment.

BeautyinBaltimore said...

@ Texas -What I meant was I think Lauryn is missing that special something that makes men fall head over heals and completly change their lives or style because of her. Notice how most of Erica Badu's conquests change after getting a piece of her.

M.Dot. said...

Notice how most of Erica Badu's conquests change after getting a piece of her.
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Just when I think you have done it...you surprise me again.

Sahara said...

I really cant speak on lauryn because i still love her even though she does seem to be going through a thang. Ms Halle is another story. She strikes me as being umm, how do I say, FRIGID.
"Not as seen on TV" if u will. It seems like she has problems in relating to black men, maybe because of her father issues. I'm just speculating of course, I don't know nuthin about that woman's bedroom. But in my opinion, Eric seemed to be a good man for her. Call me crazy, but I think that animalistic interracial porn scene she won an oscar for, had something to do with the demise of that relationship. Word is Mr Benet walked out of the theater on her during the premier of Monsters Ball, and things seemed to go downhill from there. I hear what u are saying about the "inner femminist", but u gotta pick ur spots. I personally, would rather have a good husband in my life than all the fame and riches hollywood has to offer. But thats just me. I guess she found a relationship she can handle with that dirty lookin whiteboy. All power to her.

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