If you follow my blog or know me in real life you know that I’m a professional teacher by day and a professional health writer by night. Last month I wrote a scathing blog/article about Shawty Lo, an Atlanta-based rapper who fathered 11 kids by 10 women and was set to have a reality show on the Oxygen network. I condemned this man for having unprotected sex with multiple women. I couldn’t believe that Oxygen would give this man a show and display his behavior as entertaining. Appalling! Well lo and behold just last night my bubble was burst when my roommate (aka my husband) came home and informed me that Ray “No Weapon” Lewis has six kids by four women. That shot my dog. I almost dropped my bowl of homemade bean soup on the floor. HE WHAT????
Now before everyone starts with the whole “don’t say nothin mean about Ray” song, STOP IT! This is not a Ray bashing post. However, Ray Lewis’ fertility must be old news because no one ever discusses it (at least not within earshot of me). People rant on and on about him being a murderer, which I don’t think he is but he was a dumb ass for lying to the police in an effort to cover for his gun-toting foolish friends. It’s ok. Mistakes will continue to be made as long as we all shall live. But repeatedly having unprotected sex with multiple partners is irresponsible not a mistake. I don’t give a damn how many MVP trophies you have. He had sex with four partners that resulted in offspring. That doesn’t account for the number of women he slept with that didn’t result in an offspring. A defensive player who uses no defense during sex. Interesting.
I’m feeling some kinda way about this. Ray Lewis is one of my NFL crushes. He is so damn fine! I love Ray’s passion for the Lord, his swag, his confidence that borders arrogance and his devotion to the Baltimore Ravens. No one can deny that this man is dedicated to his job. But off the field, what makes him any different from Shawty Lo? They both have multiple children with multiple women (although Shawty has Ray beat by 5). They both put themselves at risk for contracting STDs including HIV which is highest among African-American females (gee I wonder who they’re contracting it from??) However, when the public found out about Shawty Lo we went wild with criticism. We bashed the hell outta this man. What’s the difference between these two men that would make Shawty Lo scum but Ray Lewis a saint? Is it because Shawty is a rapper? Is it because Ray is an athlete with the city of Baltimore on his side? They both are guilty of reckless behavior.
I think it is way past time to get Black men talking about sex. Yeah I know men of all colors love sex and sleep around but I’m concentrating on the Brothas right now. We have all kinds of campaigns and drives to get women to protect themselves and not let men do x, y, and z to them. It’s time to focus on the men. They need to start the discussions at the barbershop or the gym or at fraternity meetings about why they refuse to wear condoms. They need to be honest with themselves about why they feel the need to sleep with so many women and why they never think twice about the consequences of unprotected sex. Notice I said ‘they’ in all of this because I strongly feel that this conversation needs to occur man to man. Women henpeck enough i.e. Anna Burns Welker Twitter comments. This whole playa thing is getting old and dangerous. In addition to racism, violence, and poor health Black men are becoming extinct because of their penises. Ray Lewis and Shawty Lo have may be taking care of business and supporting their children but I’m not fooled by the music and the dancing. These are men who unfortunately follow a familiar pattern of running from commitment. This cycle has to end. Money doesn’t buy respect or morals. Wise up Brothas. Wise up!!