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Tuesday, January 8, 2013

‘All My Babies’ Mamas’: New Low In Reality TV?

Rapper Shawty Lo is pictured with his 11 children and their 10 mothers in a short video promoting the planned Oxygen TV show "All My Babies' Mamas." (screenshot)

Rapper Shawty Lo is pictured with his 11 children and their 10 mothers in an online video promoting the planned Oxygen TV special “All My Babies’ Mamas.” (screenshot)

Critics say reality television has hit a new low. And that’s saying something.

The cable TV channel Oxygen is developing a one-hour special called, “All My Babies’ Mamas,” which follows the life of Carlos Walker, a.k.a. rapper Shawty Lo, his 11 children and their 10 mothers in Atlanta.

A 13-minute “sizzle” reel is making the rounds online. When Sabrina Lamb saw the preview of the show, she said her blood curdled.

“I was horrified, it was as if someone slapped me across the face,” Lamb told Here & Now’s Robin Young.

Lamb, an author and CEO of WorldofMoney.org, a non-profit that educates New York City youth on financial responsibility, started an online petition, calling on Oxygen to drop the show.

She said she was also outraged by Oxygen’s press release about the show, which said in part:

“Oxygen will give fans an intimate look at unconventional families with larger than life personalities and real emotional stakes,” says Cori Abraham, Senior Vice President of Development, Oxygen Media. “’All My Babies’ Mamas’ will be filled with outrageous and authentic over-the-top moments that our young, diverse female audience can tweet and gossip about.”

The Parents Television Council added its voice to the mix Monday, urging Oxygen to cancel the show, calling it “grotesquely irresponsible and exploitative.”

Oxygen declined an interview request, but sent a statement saying:

“Oxygen’s one-hour special in development is not meant to be a stereotypical representation of everyday life for any one demographic or cross section of society. It is a look at one unique family and their complicated, intertwined life. Oxygen Media’s diverse team of creative executives will continue developing the show with this point of view.”

As of Tuesday morning, Lamb’s petition had drawn more than 27,000 signatures.

Meanwhile, the Parents Television Council is threatening to contact corporate sponsors if Oxygen doesn’t pull the plug on the show.

Do you think Oxygen should cancel plans for “All My Babies’ Mamas”? Let us know on our Facebook page.

Guest:

  • Sabrina Lamb, started an online petition urging Oxygen to cancel “All My Babies’ Mamas.” She is also CEO of WorldofMoney.org, a non-profit that educates New York City youth on financial responsibility. She tweets @sabrinalamb.

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
  • PoliticsWatcher

    And the show gets free publicity from Here & Now, among many others.

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      Actually, the ‘debacle’ receives free publicity of its exploitation of innocent children…and that it should.

      Best,

      Sabrina

      • D. Rose in the paint

         But what you fail to realize Sabrina is that you really cant stop a network from airing anything. This isnt a government regulated industry where their is some big brother type organization that can lay the hammer down and punish the network for conducting their business in a manner that a couple people dont agree with. You are actually making it easier and more tempting for a network to purchase episodes and greenlight it. Regardless of what you say or do this show WILL see the light of day someway somehow, whether it be Youtube, DVD, or a television network….this show will get to the general public. But Im sure you could really care less because you are only using this situation as a platform for your own publicity for whatever it is you do. Congratulations.

  • J__o__h__n

    Almost all reality shows are crap and this one appears to be as well.  They shouldn’t be censored though.  Stop telling people what they can and can’t watch and turn off your own TV when you are offended.

    • J__o__h__n

      No response from Sabrina Lamb?  The Obama zombie comment gets a response but one questioning her censorship tactics doesn’t?

  • JR

    The saddest part about this program–as with many ‘reality’ programs–is that there’s a market for it. If producers didn’t feel there were a market, they wouldn’t produce it. So shouldn’t the people who watch this kind of show be partially responsible for its existence? A sad statement about current culture. And, Oxygen’s ‘documentary’ apology (in the Greek sense of definition) is ridiculous; it’s a money maker, bottom line.

  • The Responsible Carlos

    This show is disgraceful! And who is paying for these children? We, as taxpayers, are! The only upside would be if the proceeds frees taxpayers from supporting these kids!

    • Maggie

      Do you know for fact that these children are being supported by the State (taxpayers) or just making an assumption based on stereotypes? Rappers are known to make a lot of money-for some reason that escapes my understanding-maybe their father and mothers are supporting them…

      • Acnestes

        They also have careers that crater on a regular basis and wind up in bankruptcy.  The odds are good that these kids will wind up on assistance at some point.

        • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

          Carlos, Maggie and Acnestes,

          Now  be friends:-)…and let’s keep our focus where it should be: http://www.change.org/NoOxygen

          Sabrina

  • Trisha

    I admire your persistence and courage to do something, Sabrina Lamb! Keep up the great work. We all need to advocate for more responsible programming.  Please post where one can sign your petition. Thank you.

  • Philis Alvic

    Today an essay is circulating on the Appalachian listserve about “What so funny about being poor?” http://www.salon.com/2013/01/07/whats_so_funny_about_being_poor/

    My favorite sentence from this essay
    is — “The problem with a stereotype is usually not that it is completely
    inaccurate, but that it identifies a feature as relevant or important for
    irrelevant reasons and, in so doing, makes it difficult for the person or
    entity to break out of the stereotype and beyond it in observers’ eyes, which
    makes an authentic relationship with the stereotyped person or entity
    impossible.”  It sounds like we should team up with the “All My Babies’ Mamas” protesters. 

    PJA — Lexington, KY

  • Maggie

    Reality TV = Freak Shows.  Back from the 19th century.  Since COPS (premiered 1989) which you would not catch an episode from an affluent neighborhood-like drug abuse or domestic violence doesn’t happen there-as a society we are entertained by whatever makes us slightly “better” human beings than others or the perception of it.  Is like watching a train wreck…  If you think is offensive (at the very least is a waste of time) don’t watch it!  Boycot the products/services from the show’s sponsors-the only pressure that networks listen to.  Amazing how low our standards for (please don’t call it art) entertainment have gotten!

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      Maggie,

      I agree with one caveat….how about not letting it on the air in the first place. Exposure to one naive young person is one too many.

      Sabrina

  • J.B.

    I am in total agreement with Ms. Lamb. I’m sick and tired of giving the absolute worst elements of our society a voice. It provides a podium for bad manners, bad taste and sometimes for hate. I’m not sure it creates bad behavior – it may – but it most certainly makes people like this feel like there is nothing wrong with their behavior because “those people” are making money doing it. Let’s start applauding decent behavior again and yes, turn away from the bad. 

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      J.B.

      Thank you for support! Let’s continue to speak out…so that the negative elements think that we agree with blatant exploitation. United, we can win….and our children can feel our support.

      Best,

      Sabrina

  • Apclcsw

    I admire Sabrina Lamb for taking a stand against this type of show.  Wether we admit it or not, media affects the decisions of young people.  

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      Apclcsw,

      You are absolutely correct and I thank you for your support!

      Regards,

      Sabrina

  • Scapybara

    Thank you, Sabrina Lamb, for standing up to the kind of dirty capitalism that promotes anything for a buck.  It misleads and degrades ALL of our children.  In this case, most especially young African American women.  Please do let us know where we can sign your petition. 

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      Scapybaram

      On behalf of 30,000 people, please accept our humble appreciation for your support!
      http://www.change.org/NoOxygen

      Best,

      Sabrina 

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/FAUKVDBZ3TEF6KWWT6ITLJ2VVY Paula

    Here’s the link  petition: 

     http://www.change.org/petitions/oxygen-media-and-diga-vision-cancel-shawty-lo-s-all-my-babies-mamas-a-show-that-stereotypes-and-demeans-black-children-mothers-and-dads

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      Paula,

      Thanks a bunch for posting!

      Sabrina

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_XTK7H67SMTPUMSWHOFPNWYBWWY A

    Go ahead, target some of your anger at Oxygen and petition to kill the show. Or don’t watch. But Ms. Lamb would be better served by targetting her energy at Shawty Lo, the mothers of his children and a culture in which this sort of breeding without responsibility is allowed and, in some ways, encouraged.
    And I’m not just talking about African Americans. There are plenty of white boys happy to sprinkle the countryside with babies without a single look in the rearview, and plenty of women who let it happen. Whether they’re on welfare or not, society always pays the price.

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      A,

      You best believe he has received the collective response of the world….and I would care ‘white boys’ or ‘black boys’ and their mothers were exposing their children to dangerous behaviors…adults must speak up to support them.

      Best,

      Sabrina

  • David Harrison

    FEAR THE OBAMA ZOMBIES!

    • http://twitter.com/sabrinalamb Sabrina Lamb

      David,

      LOL! Yes….we are a scary bunch:-) http://www.change.org/NoOxygen

      Best,

      Sabrina

      • David Harrison

        I’ll get right on it, thanks.

  • Ungodd

    hahahaahahah!!

  • Leeboy

    thats a damn shame they all need to get tested for std’s

  • Migut

    I agree with Sabrina Lamb on this…I can’t see any positive lessons that can be learned from this show (this show wouldn’t even exist if we, as a nation did a little bit better at parenting).  The current culture that our youth is being exposed to makes me wonder if our better days are behind us.  When I was young, we had horror movies that made parents freak out.  Fictional movies.  The reality shows of today are far scarier than any movie I saw as a teen.

  • Tact

     

    Sounds like a great show!  BTW isn’t that the way it works in
    the jungles of Africa?  The tribesman who sings and dances and rubs his
    crotch and beats on the bongo drums the longest gets to mate with all the
    females in the village; and when they spawn children, the entire village raises
    them regardless of who the baby mama or baby daddy is — as Hillary Clinton
    reminded us in her book “It Takes a Village.”

     

    Except that this isn’t Africa, it’s the United States; so when
    they spawn babies with all the females in the “village” here, the
    President of the United States takes a break from his interviews with the
    “Pimp With the Limp” and browbeats congressional Republicans into
    taking more money from “rich people,” through taxation, to pay for
    them.   It’s just like Hillary wanted…   we’re now just
    one big (African -like) village!  Or moving very fast in that
    direction at least.

     

  • Babylonthedon

    I don’t see this being about responsible programming, i think it’s more personal! Y not file petitions about bad girls club, or honey boo boo, any of the housewife shows, real world and ect. Just my opinion but in life if u don’t like something then u don’t have to participate! I know alot about shawty lo and it’s more than 10 baby mommas. I think sone things should b given a chance cause u never know what the next person will get from this show!

  • D. Rose in the paint

    hmmmm

  • SamMosin

    Congratulations. You’ve successfully aroused national curiousity about a show that would have otherwise been ignored and lent credibility to a guest who won’t acknowledge an obvious problem in our nation.

  • Samuel Green

    The SHOW isn’t the problem. The problem is that this shit is actually going on.

  • yuck

    This is disgusting and a horrible example of a “Father”.  He’s teaching his daughters to be kept by a “PIMP”.  Shame on you Oprah for doing this and encouraging such horrible treatment of women!

  • Kristingolini

    Don’t watch the show! People like this annoy me! Yes, I agree he is not a good roll model but your an idiot if that’s the type of person you would even consider to be like! I use it as motivation for my kids to not be like him! And for the record my kids will never be like this because of our family values. That, my friend is what’s important! Stop protecting our kids! Their are losers and their are winners in our world. Hiding the truth from our kids maes them wimpy.

  • Readersdelight54

    Stop being so serious.  I am 62 and retired I think reality shows are off the hook .  Now I raised 2 of my own and if I would have to not have them or me watch it.  But I thinks it funny.  I just enjoy it .

  • linda

    REALITY TV IN GENERAL IS HUMANITY AT ITS LOWEST…..PEOPLE WILL DO ANYTHING FOR A DOLLAR….THE LOVE OF MONEY IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL
    IS THERE ANY DIGNITY LEFT???

  • Mcleanb82

    reality shows are obviously not all true. What are we  suppose to watch as entertainment when everyone feels they want  to get rid of  every single show….just because they don’t like it .  Its too diverse in society to complain about ONE SHOW!

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