Abu-Jamal's Radio Broadcasts
Power of One Black" Woman (Re: Janet Jackson)
2.86 MBs, 3:31
Short version: mp3,
2.10 MBs, 2:34
the first woman God ever made was strong enough to turn the world
upside down alone, these women together ought to be able to turn
it back, and get it right side up again!" Sojourner
something happens in America that is simply stunning; something
that blows the mind.
This is one
The event is
the Janet Jackson episode of her breast being bared at the halftime
entertainment at the Super Bowl. It is not the brief, glancing peep
at Janet's (or Miss
Jackson 'if ya nasty') breast that is, after all, shocking.
It is the incredible
response to it!
The news media
launched into replay mode, showing and reshowing the shot, over,
and over, and yet over again. It became the leading news story,
for several days, all throughout the country.
had to wonder: Had America gone mad?
light-complexioned cohort, who had built a career on the cooptation
of Black dance grooves, leapt to distance himself from the pop star.
"I am appalled," he
And one of
the most remarkable female entertainers of her generation, who had
sold her music to millions, stood virtually alone in the harsh,
yet cold klieg lights of Hollywood. Members of Congress announced
swift hearings on "decency" on television, and CBS fought
with the NFL to bow and cringe the quickest at
One bared breast. One second.
... And a catastrophe.
There are no
congressional hearings to attempt to deal with the over 2 million
jobs that have been lost in the past 8 months.
There are no
congressional hearings on the way the Nation was hustled into war
by the White House.
There are no
congressional hearings into the alleged 'weapons of mass destruction'
that weren't there in Iraq.
One young singer
(apparently mistakenly) bares her chocolate bosom, and the
There is something
disturbingly childish about Americans.
If this happened
on French or German TV few eyebrows would've been raised. But the
Americans, who still hold to the empty illusions of their Pilgrim
founding myth, take great umbrage at the baring of the body
especially the Black female body.
instinct is to control it; to police it; to erect barriers to it.
And they do
this, ostensibly, for 'the children'.
in a country where folks have called the police when some women
were breastfeeding children!
It ain't about
children; it's about women, and the 'shock and awe' that some men
feel when the female body is asserted into public space.
to me, like the fear of women; the hidden hatred of women, and,
of course, the desire to control female power especially
Black female power.
That this occurs
in a country that claims to fight wars in the Middle East to 'liberate'
women is telling. That it happens in a nation where women are bought
and sold like hot buttered biscuits in the multi-billion dollar
sex trade (owned by some of the biggest corporations on Wall St.,
by the way) is also telling.
demeans women, especially poor ones. It relegates them to the worst-paid
labor, in jobs where self-respect is but an illusion. It is, in
fact, closer in spirit to the theocracies of the Middle East than
it cares to admit.
And yet, when
events such as this occur, one can only be stunned, by the power
the power of one woman, to rock a nation, with a mere flash
of a mammary. Umph, umph, umph.
2004 Mumia Abu-Jamal
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© copyright 2004 by Mumia Abu-Jamal.
All rights reserved.
Reprinted by permission of the author.