It seems like every Nigerian video on TV these days has some girl with pouty lips who is all out to show how dexterous she is at “shaking what her Mama gave her.” And the guys are not left out too. They get to show off their one to six packs and skimpy looking boxer shorts.
Every time I see especially the girls, I always ask myself, do their parents get to watch this? What must they think of their daughter’s chosen career in booty-shaking? I once knew someone who deigned to appear in a music video. This was way back in the nineties and this particular video was actually tame compared to recent stuff. The song was also decent as it preached spousal faithfulness. I bet you till this day that this lady is yet to live down the flak she got for making that one video. Her parents were outraged and her whole family, from the oldest to the youngest, got to
chip in something about their personal disappointment. Looking back now, the whole situation then seems like overkill considering that the girl was fully dressed throughout the video and the song was actually preaching a moral. But it’s not too amazing if one remembers how parents used to feel about such things.
But what about these days, what are parents’ take on music videos? The most troubling thing, to me, is that it is not only adults that get to watch them. Some of these videos should really be labeled for adults only. It is upsetting to think that these pseudo-eroticas are actually aired during periods when children are most likely to tune to them: during weekday-evenings, Saturdays and even on Sunday afternoons.
It is little wonder then that nowadays when you go to an Aunty-give-me-cake party, you can’t help but see little children trying their hardest to shake what their Mama gave them the way their Aunty taught them. And we are talking about an increase in pedophilia in the country! Have you seen what some of these kids wear to these parties? I mean, what their mothers dress them in?
It is one thing to blame an artist for making a hot video to promote his song and album sales because for him, it is pure business. He is trying to make money or boost his reputation according to some certain industry standard which is acceptable to his peers (maybe not to NBC). It is also another thing for a TV station to air certain materials designed for adult consumption at periods that should be reserved for children broadcast.
Still, the entire case of standards, morals and censorship lies at the door of parents. A friend of mine who subscribes to pay-TV has this rule in his house where stations that display adult content be it in film or song are never switched on when his kids are awake. There is only one TV in the house and whenever the kids are up on their feet it is tuned to one cartoon channel or the other. Whether you like it or not, you watch cartoon or football till the kids go to bed. Sounds a little naïve considering that kids imbibe what they want they want to be imbibe especially if they are kept away from it. But personally, I have always believed in that biblical mantra: train a child the way he should go and when he grows up he would not depart from it. Set standards for yourself and for your kids. For some people, it is
unthinkable going against a trend. We do not want our kids to be left out or ridiculed for being unhip or uncool enough.
There are so many things that are cool without them being “show bodi” clothes as my mom will call them or gyrating buttocks. Just think, one day, it could be your kid in that video displaying all her goodies and trying so hard to look nonchalantly cool and steaming hot all at the same time. Maybe then it would hit home…
Kay Omar is a freelance writer and blogger who blogs at kayomar.wordpress.com with a background in media and communication. She writes for Sideview magazine and styleme-up.com. She is an artiste manager and a PR person and has recently taken over management of Oyana,(0yanatalkative.blogspot.com) a music blog…