When I saw the cover art for Nicki's single Anaconda, I honestly thought nothing of it. She's Nicki Minaj and that's basically what she's been known for throughout her career. I don't knock her for it, or judge her because that's not my place. I actually like some of her music and listen to it without an issue. I'm a mother of course, and I have a little girl to think about, but that has nothing to do with Nicki Minaj.
Nicki is older than me, and has every right to show any part of her body that is allowed by the FCC, or whoever regulates those types of things. My FB timeline was buzzing with comments and memes since the art was released both in amazement and in disgust. Recently HuffPost Live did a segment featuring Chuck Creekmur (AllHipHop.com,) who penned an open letter to Nicki, and Jamilah Lemieux (Ebony.com) who responded to his letter. Both of them are influential and well-respected members of the media who have relevant perspectives on the situation, if its serious enough to call it that.
Nicki is not the first female artist or celebrity to expose her body in this way. When I was coming up, Lil Kim and Foxy Brown proudly posed with nearly nothing on and recited similar lyrics. Although I was much too young to listen to their music, I must admit that I knew the words to many of their songs. I sung along to their records even if I didn't necessarily know what they meant.
My child is two years old, and right now her favorite songs are , "The Bumblebee Song," "Baa Baa Black Sheep" and "Itsy Bitsy Spider." I may have a long way to go before explaining to her who Nicki Minaj is and why she chooses to show her bottom to the world. Even with the older girls in my family who are tweens and above, Nicki Minaj doesn't pose an actual threat to them, in my opinion. As a teen and even young adult, I can recall dressing in a way that I'd never want my child to think about dressing. It wasn't because I was trying to mimic a celebrity, but because I truly liked the way those kind of clothes fit my body at that time. I look back on some of the things I wore, and wonder, what the hell I was thinking.
As a mother, I'm much more concerned with her finding a pic of me, or even her aunts/te te's wearing provocative clothing and wanting to mimic us. I'd like to believe that my child would look to the women who are in her life as role models before a celebrity. I know that at some point I may have to address certain issues that may or may not be related to the way women, and men are portrayed in the media with my child, but that will be my business. I don't feel any celebrity should be expected to consider children they have nothing to do with before making music or taking photos. As parents, we have a direct influence on how our children perceive what they see. It's our jobs to answer their questions and guide them to understanding the difference between what they see or hear in the media vs. what they should and shouldn't do in reality.
There are quite a few inappropriate messages being conveyed in the media that may be considered to have an major impact of the crime rates across the world, these are much more damaging than the posterior of a woman. Nicki's butt isn't going to encourage my child or anyone else to go out and kill someone, or to use drugs or do something else to land themselves in prison or an early grave. I'm not even convinced that it will make my child want to pose like that necessarily. I grew up seeing those types of images in the media and it didn't have an impact on the woman, or mother I am today. I understand that there are people who are highly bothered or even offended by Nicki and others who they feel should act more like role models, but, as far as I'm concerned, Nicki Minaj's butt is none of my daughters business.