Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Gangsta Babies. Part 2

I hope you had an opportunity to read my previous post entitled "WTH Gangsta Babies?? ...Seriously" if not check that one out first and then read this one. If you did read it I hope you will join me in writing a letter to voice your "displeasure" with the Mezco company.

Hat tip to my blogging sister at BlackWomen, Blow The Trumpet!
who dug up an address for us! I tell you man, bloggers RULE!!
Any way send your beautiful, opinionated letters to:
Michael Markowitz President Mezco Toyz LLC
2107 Borden Avenue
Fifth floor
Long Island City, NY 11101

Let Mr. Markowitz know how much you
LOVE his depiction of urban America!

So anyway...
I had an ANONYMOUS commenter (By the way Merriam Webster defines Anonymous as: : lacking individuality, distinction, or recognizability) who felt that my outrage at this atrocity was harsh and unfounded and an "OVER-REACTION to a non- issue" (This person is SO OBVIOUSLY a BET fan...)! This was their comment:

" Wow. Overreaction to a non-issue.
Some facts:
1) The Biggie doll is made in cooperation with Biggie’s Mother. He doesn’t come with any weapons or drug paraphernalia. It is a celebration of a life ended too short.
2) The Gangsta Babies are not intended for children. The age rating is 15 and up.
3) As you may have read in numerous articles, or heard on the radio, or seen on BET in February (during BET’s positive report on the 4th series of Biggie dolls) Mezco is the only company that mass produces African American action figures as part of their own stand alone line. Barbie and GI Joe have “black friends” but only Mezco makes entire lines of African American figures. Mezco made 3 lines of Run DMC figures, 4 series of Biggie, and one of Public Enemy. They also made the Warriors line of which 2 of the 6 characters were African American. Can anyone else here name another series of mass produced figures where 33% are ethnic? Anyone?
How is it that Bratz, which glamorize a shallow lifestyle and sexualize pre-teens is acceptable, heck, the best selling doll in the US for several years, but a hip hop style baby, made for adults as a novelty, is a focus of such anger?"

I usually respond to comments via individual emails but since this was an anonymous comment I have to respond via this post!

Dear Anonymous,
Thank you so much for your obviously well informed and well thought out but misguided comment.
1- If Biggie's Momma thinks that a Biggie doll is an accurate celebration of his life than that is certainly her choice to believe so...
2- Even if the Gangsta Babies dolls are not for children (with an age rating of 15 yrs and over) that doesn't mean that children will not be exposed to them. Certain cartoons are not for children (ie. The Simpson's & Family Guy) but children do see them and are impacted by them.
3- I must have missed the numerous educational articles about Gangtsa Babies and I don't watch BET (Black Exploitation Television) because it is garbage BUT as you said, "Barbie and GI Joe have “black friends” but only Mezco makes entire lines of African American figures. Mezco made 3 lines of Run DMC figures, 4 series of Biggie, and one of Public Enemy."

Is this an accurate depiction of African American life? Is this the best that an entire race has to offer? Is there a Mary McCloud Bethune doll, Fredrick Douglas doll, Martin Luther King doll, Langston Huges doll, Duke Ellinton doll or a George Washington Carver doll?? No?? Then how does a Flava Flav doll, or a Biggie doll help to educate, edify, uplift or celebrate the accomplishments of an awesome race of people?
But hey maybe you could be right, maybe a Biggie doll or a Gangsta Baby doll is so much better for children 15 years and over since they don't glamorize a shallow lifestyle and sexualize pre-teens!!
Thanks so much for your comment!

Ok, bloggers, sound in! Please leave your thoughts and comments!
And don't forget to write to Mr. Michael Markowitz and show your appreciation or disdain for his company's products!!

Peace & Love

11 People Saying Something!

R.L.Scovens 07 August, 2008 13:01

"Is this an accurate depiction of African American life? Is this the best that an entire race has to offer?"

That was my very first thought! That's not all that black people are about! And it's so sad that WE are the one supporting crap like this!!! Come on now! We need to get educated and grab some self esteem from somewhere and start knowing that this kind of stuff has to change!

Don 07 August, 2008 13:20

I'm a fan of Biggie Smalls' music, and a former fanatic of the hip hop culture, period. With that said I have to admit how something just doesn't seem right seeing this image being made into a doll. I mean, really, is this what its all about??? I think not.

AJ 07 August, 2008 17:05

Me thinks the anonymous person protest too much. I'm sure if anon thinks this is not an outrage they don't seem to have much love for the African American race. What other race makes fun of themselves and allows demeaning figures into the main stream without a uproar?

I imagine the company that makes and sells this junk is laughing all the way to the bank.


OK; whose buying dolls for a 15 year old? Unfortunately we have too many 15 year olds playing with their own babies, to be concerned with playig with a doll.

But OK suppose for the sake of arguement their are parents buying these dolls for their 15 year old. What image are they putting in front of their teens to aspire to? We don't have enough teens finishing high school and gong to college to become teachers, doctors, engineers, scientist or whatever because too many of them are all aspiring to be rap artists and athelets. Schools like Harvad are offering full scholariships to black students, because they are underrepresented; but rather than buying college text books we want parents to buy the the teens Biggie Smalls dolls.
Go figure!

Sharon Brumfield 07 August, 2008 21:51

I think that all who chose to leave a comment this time..so far....have been on point.
I can not speak for this "awesome race" but I think they are right in saying that this is not the image that they want to be portrayed. It is not a image to be lived up to.
And while we are on the subject of dolls....neither Barbie nor Bratz are the image that I want my daughter to live up to.
There are so many great rolls models that we can choose from....why would I let someone who is just out for my money-decide that? Before I get up on my soap box I will close this comment. :)
Good thoughts here.


Yeah, I read that "anonymous" comment yesterday, and thought it sounded like a company PR person. They seemed to know a lot of info on a company that a lot of your other readers had a hard time even finding an address for. And seriously, 15 and up? What kind of toy has an age range like that? Weirdness.

HEALTH NUT WANNABEE MOM 08 August, 2008 09:40

The bottom line for me is do I want my children to play with these dolls? No, of course not.

P.s. Regina you are hysterical about the butter and here I could eat butter out of the tub. It is pretty weird. You made me laugh with your comment!

Believer 1964 08 August, 2008 11:33

Kudos to Regina for making the choice to stand firm in her belief that this is nonsense and say so.

Thembi 08 August, 2008 13:03

Gangsta Babies?
Actually Im surprised it took them this long...

blackwomenblowthetrumpet.blogspot.com 08 August, 2008 22:46

Hey there Regina!

I do agree with your comments to the anonymous person!

It is amazing how many people say black people are "over-reacting" to blatant racism...

There are black scholars that they could have decided to make dolls of..what about a Maya Angelou doll...I would not complain if they had an Oprah doll...

{shaking my head}

Chocl8t 11 August, 2008 14:16

Gangsta Babies? For real?

Regina...stand firm in your belief!! This is some crazy nonsense.

My Fort Worth, TX Weather...

Regina's Family Seasons Disclosure Policy

This blog is a personal blog written and edited by me. For questions about this blog, please contact Regina at (geegeejegar@gmail.com).
This blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions, products or free advanced books, and other forms of compensation.
The owner of this blog is sometimes compensated to provide opinion on products, services, websites and various other topics. Even though the owner of this blog may receive compensation for posts or advertisements, I always give my honest opinions, findings, beliefs, or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely my own and are NOT always favorable. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question.
The owner of this blog would like to disclose the following existing relationships. These are individuals that may have a significant impact on the content of this blog. I blog about people to whom I am related. The most interesting such people are: My Family hence the name Regina's Family Seasons! Other than my family I blog about whatever or whom ever I want to blog about!

To get your own policy, go to http://www.disclosurepolicy.org