2 Chainz has one request in his latest track: dude just wants some “big booty hoes.” But not everyone is okay with this portrayal of women, especially when they see the music video for the popular “Birthday Song,” where the objectification of these women is so incredibly apparent.
In the vid, 2 Chainz, Kanye West, and some male friends are partying it up in the company of beautiful women of color who have—you guessed it—large butts. The ladies walk around in revealing clothing, dance for the dudes, and look good with bored expressions (that is, when the faces of these women get any screen time.)
Now, there’s nothing wrong with dressing however you damn well please (do what you want with your body, you only get one) but FAAN Mail, which stands for Fostering Activism and Alternatives Now!, a Philadelphia-based media literacy and activism project, vocalize their concerns that these hyper-sexualized portrayals of women of color are marginalizing them, propagating disrespect, and labeling women of color as sex objects. Not so stellar when you don’t want to be called a “hoe” by anyone, ever.
FAAN Mail’smission is to “1. critique media, 2. create and promote the alternatives we wish to see, [and] 3. engage our communities through education, media and activism.” The organization understands that women of color are often degraded, stereotyped, or missing entirely from mainstream media. Borrowing wisdom from rights activist bell hooks, FAAN Mail aims to “talk back” to media in order to, as their website states, “deconstruct and challenge hegemonic representations and messages within media and our everyday lives.”
These women lay out their own birthday requests for 2 Chainz in their response to his video, each request involving a respectful portrayal of women of color in the media, and the rejection of sexist, objectifying music. If you want to learn more, check out the group’s Twitter and Facebook pages, and participate in the discussion. #TALKBACK