Ignorant Like a Foxx


Have you heard the new song by Jamie Foxx (featuring T-Pain)? It is called “Blame It”. In case you haven’t I’ve got it for you right here, along with the lyrics so you can read along:

The official video

Here are the lyrics (unofficial)

This makes me sad. I have (or had) a tremendous amount of respect for Jamie Foxx as an actor, comedian and musician. He is incredibly talented without question. It is sad to see him write a song that promotes getting a girl drunk for the purposes of having sex her. Wait…there is another way to say that. Oh yeah…a song that promotes rape. Surprised at that? I am sure Jamie Foxx would be too.

You see, I don’t believe that Jaime Foxx set out to write a song that promotes rape. I bet he still doesn’t know that he wrote a song that promotes rape. In fact, I bet if you asked him about it he would look at you like you are crazy (perhaps the same way you might look at me if I were there right now). Before you rush to judgement or dismiss my words, hear me out.

This is a case of Jamie Foxx being ignorant. Before you get it twisted, ignorant means uninformed or unaware, not stupid. I am not insulting Mr. Foxx. I am merely pointing out that he, like so many male musicians, doesn’t realize what he is actually saying in those lyrics. He doesn’t know what damage he is doing by making a song like that. I think he came up with a catchy hook and a snappy tune that would have mass appeal to the part of society that has the power to keep him relevant and profitable. I also believe he is pressured by his record label, J-Records (owned and operated by Sony Music Entertainment) to write songs that are risque and a little taboo to create a buzz around his music. Being controversial sells records. This is not diverting blame to other places. Jamie Foxx needs to be held accountable for his role in this. However, he is not the only one that needs to shoulder the blame. We also need to take a look at Sony, the radio industry, MTV, VH1, BET, Ron Howard, Jake Gyllenhall, Forest Whitaker, Samuel L. Jackson, WalMart, Target, Amazon and many others. This song is part of a much larger system designed to generate profit at the expense of, and without regard to, women and people of color.

Do you know that Foxx performed the song on American Idol in April? Do you know that American Idol is the number one rated show for children 13 and under? What message is this sending to the teens and tweens that are fans of American Idol? Just in case it isn’t clear, I will tell you. The message for boys is that it is perfectly acceptable for you to get a girl drunk and take advantage of her when she is “loosened up”. For girls, the message is that if you have too much to drink then it is your fault if you are raped. For a 13 year old (or younger) those messages are very strong and sticky. This is the age when youth are forming their attitudes and beliefs about healthy sexuality. If the message they get is that drug facilitated sexual assault is acceptable, then we have a huge problem on our hands. Songs like this reinforce promote and gender inequality.

We cannot remain silent while musicians from every genre of music crank out song after song that sexualizes, objectifies and commodifies women. We have to send a very clear message to the entertainment industry that we demand something different. We can no longer support an industry that is willing to make their money off of the backs of women. We have created a culture that supports violence against women and that must stop. It is time we build a society that values women for their intelligence, insight and wisdom rather than their sexuality and beauty. It starts with an awakening. We must start talking about these issues publicly and we must inspire others to do the same. It is our job to throw a few stones into the water and create a ripple effect.

Jamie Foxx is scheduled to appear on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on May 18. Please consider contacting Ellen DeGeneres and urge her to talk to Jamie Foxx about this song and the messages embedded in it. I don’t want her to cancel him as a guest. I would much rather see an honest discussion about the issue. While I don’t feel it is Ellen’s (or any other woman’s) responsibility to confront him, she is in an unique position to bring this issue up publicly. If you’d like to encourage Ellen to take action you can reach her on Twitter (@TheEllenShow) or through her website at http://ellen.warnerbros.com/. Sadly, Jamie Foxx has no contact information on his official website http://www.jamiefoxx.com. If you find a way to contact him, please put it in the comments or tweet it.

***If you are on Twitter, be sure to follow me @responsiblemen. Also, please use the hash tag #ignorantfoxx on any tweets related to this topic so that we can track our efforts. Thanks!

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7 thoughts on “Ignorant Like a Foxx

  1. […] This post was Twitted by ResponsibleMen – Real-url.org […]

  2. stephenmcarthur says:

    Ted — I wish this was the only song we know about. There are so many. But I am with you…the more men stand up and object to this kind of sexist drivel the better. Every woman in the video is merely an object for male use. I am appalled that men like Ron Howard would lend his image to this, not to mention Samuel L. Jackson and the others.

    By the way, are you going to be at The Call to Men conference in New York City?

    Stephen McArthur
    Violence Prevention Advocate & Hotline Crisis Worker
    Battered Women’s Services & Shelter, Washington County, Vermont
    Leadership Forum, Vermont Approach to Ending Sexual Violence
    Member, Vermont Sexual Violence Prevention Task Force
    Cell — 802-839-0371

    • Hi Stephen – thx for your comment! Sadly, I had to choose between the MCSR conference and A Call To Men. I chose MCSR this time because ACTM was too close to another conference that I help organize for youth. Hopefully next time!

      Thanks for all of your work!

      Ted

    • Stephen – I forgot to mention…look up my friend Zell Miller III, Shannon Sandrea and the Public Offenders. They are all good people and all do great work here in Austin!!!

  3. anonymous says:

    I’m really upset and was crying watching this video and then reading the lyrics. I too am so disappointed in Jamie Foxx and all the “others” who support this song/video.

    I was a victim of rape in college. It took me 15 years to realize that I was truly a victim because I blamed alcohol and myself instead of the guy that thought me being basically passed out and/or too weak to fight him off as he shoved me up against a wall meant a “yes” or at the very least NOT “saying no”….

    This is not O.K. It’s not O.K. for guys to assume if a girl is drinking that she’s a target or someone to be taken advantage of or pushed around, or that they can blame their actions or anyone else’s for that matter on alcohol. I’m so glad to see people, especially men, speaking out against this even though the mainstream has become so desensitized to how things like this actually do contribute to the problems with the way women are not only viewed and treated. Even worse is that teenagers and children are hearing messages and dancing to music like this not even realizing the negativity that it’s perpetuating. Please, speak up….I know I cannot be the only one!

    • Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I am truly sorry that we live in a world that not only allows, but supports rape. You are 100% correct that it is not OK!!! Thank you for encouraging others to speak up. You are not the only one. Sadly 1 in 6 American women have been the victims of an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime. College aged women are 4 times more likely to be raped than any other group. This is something that has to change!

      Thanks again.

      Ted

  4. Thank you, thank you for paying attention!

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