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Editorial: Why I Won’t Be Watching ‘Basketball Wives’

By Christie Cartell

We all grow up and get older, allow time to pass. Time can bring both good and bad but we seek, with faith, to celebrate our triumphs and learn lessons from our failures. That’s what life offers us. That’s what this journey is all about.

But I think there is something that these women just aren’t getting straight. They’re not stopping to learn from your problems. And their biggest problem right now is failing me and other young black women like me.

When I first started watching Basketball Wives I was excited. I was super excited for what was about to come and to be able to see black women who had been played by their players and their game forge forward and prove that they were somebody more than just ____’s girlfriend. I was ready to show where women were going to showcase their independence and stick it to the men. Prove to young women like me that this not the type of lifestyle that we want and that we can make it on our own. Or prove to other women who might be caught up in the same predicament that we are sisters first and we need to look out for each other. That’s what I thought I had found in Shaunie O’ Neal’s new show.

But just as Shaunie has kept her ex-husband’s last name, she allowed the women she hired for the show to use their power to escalate their brands. Now don’t get me wrong. Business is business and I’m all for women being on their grind. But in the process of pushing their own names forward, they’ve forgotten the names of the young women who might be watching their show.

What I’m saying is that I might not be giving the next season of Basketball Wives another glance over or continues contributing to their ratings because the women on the show have failed me. Arguments, gossip, and mindless chatter equal drama and they make for a great reality show. It’s science, nothing new. But reckless fighting and assault? That’s some crazy ish that got to go?

What does Tami’s temper teach young black girls? That beating the mess out of someone is the only way you can handle your problems. What does Meeka’s fleeting attitude teach young women like me? That we’re still in the 7th grade and the most important thing in life is to be accepted by the cool kids.

I thought these were grown women?  My little sister behaves better than them and she’s in grade school.

So unless there is some revamping in the works and less fist flying, I’m sorry VH1, but you’ve lost one customer. Maybe it won’t matter—we are all such small people in this big world. But all I can say is that I’m not the only one who thinks this way. Even Shaunie admitted to Fox News:

“When I started the show I really just wanted to follow this group of ladies around. We all have a common bond; we understand each other’s lives. It started as that. Since then, it’s taken on a life of its own,” O’Neal told FOX411’s Pop Tarts column. “I never imagined it would be a group of ladies fighting and arguing that way that they do. That was never part of the plan.”

She says that she is struggling to find balance in the show.

“I hate that it has to be a fight or an argument that gives us 4.2 million viewers.  I hate that, but it’s something where I’m working as hard as I can to show some type of balance, because it is there. We do know how to act, we do charity work. I would love a little more balance and we’re going to try to do more of that in season 4,” she said. “I know that people love the fighting and the arguing, but I do want to have some positive in there somewhere.”

In fact O’Neal is so embarrassed by the show that she won’t even let her own kids watch it.

Does that say enough?

The master chef dealt it. So who’s going to fix the nasty entrée I’ve been served?

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