I caught an interview with Prince on BETJ last week. At one point, the interviewer told Prince how much he enjoyed the song, "Dirty Mind." He asked if Prince would be performing the song in his up coming tour or any of the other risque material for which he's known.
Prince smiled and asked the interviewer what he thought Prince should do. The guy said, in so many words, "Hey, go for it." Prince said, "Well what should I do about the 14 year old who's sitting in the front row?
The interviewer said, "Well, you never thought about the 14 year old back in the 80's . . ." To which Prince responded, "No, back then, there were no 14 year olds seated in the front row. Besides, I'd like to think that I've grown and I'm more responsible than I was back then . . ."
Responsibility? Wow, what an interesting coincidence. Not only did my last post on "The Death Of Hip Hop" address the topic of artistic and collective responsibility, the post was written in the hours prior to my viewing of the Prince interview.
So what does any of this have to do with the singer Akon? Well, there is that picture of him and the alleged 14 year old girl currently making the internet rounds. You know, the one with him on stage on his back and babygirl sitting atop his thighs? Yeah, even if you haven't seen it, you get the picture, I'm sure.
Anyway, I've heard all of the excuses. How was he supposed to know how old she was? Her little fast tail didn't have any business there in the first place. Did you see how she was dressed? And where were her parents?
Spare me, please. After all is said and done, she's still 14 years old (allegedly) and at age 34 (I believe) Akon is still a grown azz man. Perhaps one good place to start would be not pulling anyone up on stage for the purpose of simulating sex. Since when is strip club behavior appropriate for a concert? I guess around about the time we all decided any and everything goes, huh? I'm pretty sure, at this rate and given the direction things are going, actual sex on stage will be next. And after that, what? Publicly relieving oneself on folks' children? Oh, I'm sorry I guess R. Kelley already did that . . . allegedly (smile).
Prince, His Royal Badness personified, is right. Back in the 80's, I had the pleasure of attending a couple of his concerts and I can personally vouch for what he said about 14 year olds not sitting up front row center of his shows. They weren't. They shouldn't be at Akon's either--not front row center (under the circumstances) and most certainly not up stage straddling his 34 year old thighs. If we were all committed to being responsible, they wouldn't be.
But if we truly want this kind of foolishness to end, we can't just stop at blaming the parents, much less the child. And at age 14, I don't care how she's dressed, she's still a child. It takes a village y'all. So stop co-signing this mess and act like you know.