Team Nicki or Team Kim? How about neither?

By: Amanda Anderson

There is no question that Nicki Minaj is leading in the female rap game, and one of the only female rappers working magic on the Billboard charts, and garnering most of the attention (positive or negative) from the public in an anti-climatic music industry that pushes pop music over real hip-hop. While the youngin’s have labeled Minaj as the original barbie, those 25 and up have seen all of this before, and can’t help but think of the first black barbie, and the one we’ve come to know as the Queen B. Lil’ Kim was penned as the raunchiest of female emcees, but later adopted the barbie persona as she successfully attempted to cross over into pop appeal. No one can argue that Kim has made her an everlasting contribution to hip hop, but with the surge of Minaj’s success, Kim has found herself taking a defensive stance, when she ought to be flattered that Nicki’s success couldn’t have happened without following the original blueprint laid out by the Queen Bee herself. Sure Nicki has switched it up and came into her own with her own signature style of rapping, but when we look at Nicki, we can’t help but see Kim.

Maybe it’s this reality that has made it hard for Kim to gracefully bow out of the spotlight.

With her refusal to succumb to the successes of the new Head Barbie, Kim has initiated a series of personal attacks via media headlines, interviews, and now…a diss track. Pink Friday has only been out for a few days, and already, Black Friday, Kim’s response to Roman’s Revenge, is making bigger headlines than Minaj’s debut album.

Fans of both barbies are forced to choose sides, with Team Kim and Team Nicki becoming the focal point of Hip-Hop, more so than the music itself.

But one has to ask, should we really be picking teams of two women who have done nothing but single handedly set black women back 3 decades with tacky colored wigs and slut inspired lyrics, with images that reek of low self esteem?

Some will say I’m being too harsh, but when I see these two women, I don’t see a team that I want to be a part of. And I most certainly do not see two strong women that have made a contribution to hip hop that I myself can be proud of. If anything, I see two black women who have allowed men to control and dictate their careers, and overall images. Their lyrics don’t consist of female empowerment, but instead, focus on material things and a sex game more raunchier than most.

These two “artists” were manufactured by the male rappers who “put them on,” with Nicki and Kim looking less like their original selves with each new album and adopted gimmick. Both push plastic images, which in turn, demonstrates the self hate that some black women are pushing behind the blond wigs, butt pads, and skimpy clothes.

It’s also interesting that Kim calls Nicki a Lil’ Kim clone clown, when both of these women are clowns in their own respective images. Besides their skin tones, these women don’t even look like black women. They won’t step out the house without their European inspired wigs and weaves. And these are the women I’m supposed to relate to and support artistically?

How is it that two black women lacking in African American features are supposed to somehow represent black women in music?

Most importantly, why have we let this happen, while single handedly letting ourselves get to the point that we can’t even realize what we are truly supporting? It’s bigger than music when black girls who have yet to even reach the age of 18 years old are looking more like Nicki Minaj than young girls who have the potential to change the world. As Young Money continues to thrive, young black girls are looking more like statistics, than future first ladies.

Our generation is no better when we have also chosen a side, and declared our loyalty to another artist who hates her black features enough to destroy her facial features completely. Should we really be Team Kim, when Kim has been cooning since her debut album that featured a cover with a young Kim spreading her legs open for the world to see?

Again, I don’t say this to offend, but we need to wake up and stop supporting artists who push self hate to the young people and gladly promote plastic images that will keep black women in blond wigs and compromising positions with men. Our mentality changed, once our heroes became nothing but self hating Negroes. No wonder we were more interested in Lil’ Wayne’s release from prison than the 2010 midterm elections which actually affects are lives greater than we realize.

The sad thing is, out of all of this, someone with a lower IQ than George W. Bush will simply write this off as hating. But if you ask me, Lil’ Kim and Nicki Minaj are the bigger haters…hell, they hate themselves. And now, they have a lot of black folks hating themselves in the form of barbie-hood and a dependency on someone’s else straight hair…I’m just saying.

So don’t expect me to be Team Nicki or Team Kim when I actually love my black features. Yeah, I dig my wide nose, my kinky and thick gorgeous hair, the fact that I can walk out the house with nothing on but lip gloss, and still turn more heads than that other chick with the blond wig. I also don’t have to walk out the house damn near naked to appeal to the opposite sex. I love my body and it shows in the fact that I don’t expose it for unworthy men who can’t think of anything else but sexin’.

The good news is, there are more black women just like me. We love ourselves unconditionally, and we can’t be on any team that can’t seem to agree that we are perfect the way we are. We’re intelligent enough to see these artists for what they really are, and determined to do better in our own lives. And if you’re that woman, be proud that you’re not a barbie, a bad bitch, a queen bitch, a Monica Lewinsky, or any other creature that was created by an entertainment industry that hates women enough to destroy them, one music career at a time.

And if you aren’t that woman, now is the time to step into your true potential. But you’ll have to break out the plastic shell first, are you ready to be different and love yourself?

Grown women don’t play with barbies, and confident women rock their black features like it’s beautiful, because it is damn it.

Team Self-Respect.

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