As You Were Twerking

As You Were Twerking

I watched these types of videos and am discouraged.  Mind you, this is happening in class, not just in the streets. Why is it that young ladies can degrade themselves better than they can construct sentences and master arithmetic?  No one has motivation to study for the SAT or otherwise prepare for life after high school yet practice gyrating to no end.  There is a dire need to address the message being conveyed and the effect it has had on our youth.

‘It’s fun!…It’s just dancing…it’s not that serious!’ I ask girls all the time what makes twerking the thing to do and these are the responses they give. I get it. Trust me. I was a teenager once upon a time. In my day we had the butterfly and the pop. Perhaps the adults felt the same way about our moves that we do about this generation’s. And don’t get it twisted. African American girls are not the only ones engaging in this form of dance. Every culture has twerking to some degree.

So what’s the big idea? Why is it damaging?  Because it’s misleading.

WHO YOU ARE

When you think of twerking what comes to mind? Females, usually in tiny shorts, doing suggestive, booty popping. When you think of yourself do you see the same vision?  I hope not. Most young people have aspirations for successful futures. I don’t know anyone who, deep in their hearts, only wants mediocre. You have passions, goals, dreams and surely they surpass this form of dance.

WHO PEOPLE THINK YOU ARE

‘I don’t care about what people think about me.’ Sometimes you need to.  When rumors circulate or your parents have a difficult time trusting you because of your habits or behavior, you will care.  The boys girls try to impress when they twerk-they are not thinking, ‘Oh she is going to be the girl I spend the rest of my life with. Look at her twerk! She is going to be a great mother and a decent wife. My parents will be proud that I chose her. Definitely not. He is thinking, ‘If she is acting like this then she is probably willing to have sex.’

What you exhibit to people will become their perception of you whether it is reflective of who you really are or not. They can only consider what you offer them. You are to exemplify your best attributes at all times.  If you don’t represent yourself well, who will?

YOUR FUTURE

No one thinks CEO, doctor or lawyer when they see girls twerking. They think promiscuity, teen pregnancy and a range of other unfortunate but perpetuated stereotypes.  It is very hard not to imagine a strip club future for females posting pictures and videos of themselves doing this.

When the time comes for letters of recommendation, acceptance into programs, or even interviews, you want to be known as someone who conducts themselves in a respectable manner.  Reputations follow you for life and while you may be able to rehabilitate them, it takes hard work and lots of time.

Consider now who you want to be known as and begin promoting that identity.

I want to dare all females to be more than their bodies. To know that they have more to offer than a view of their behinds. There is so much more to be known and remembered for than how well you can make it clap.  I’m not saying that you can’t enjoy dancing and have fun with your friends but there is a time, place and manner in which to do all things.  I just ask that as you twerk to realize what and who you are telling people you are.

In your opinion, is twerking a truly harmless act?

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8 Responses to “As You Were Twerking”

  1. Shawnas says:

    This is an interesting topic!!! I think the difference in our generation and theirs is we had more respect…if not for ourselves…then our authority!!! Our parents/teachers/elders! We may have done things but in an appropriate setting! This generation is all about fun! Not about degrees, education or being better than their parents. But “WE” are the blame cus it was our generation who had babies at 14-16yrs old!!! It was us who raised them this way! So now that we’ve created monsters , what do we do????

    • Amani Jackson says:

      Shawnas what an awesome point! Babies having babies. So how could they know the proper manner in which to raise them? Especially if their teenage parents were children of teenagers and so forth or had lack of support and guidance. What a domino effect. And you are right, my parents would have been so humiliated and furious to witness or hear of me doing anything like this in public. Fun is fun but at where do we draw the line as the adults setting the standards?

      • Shawnas says:

        The o ly thi g I can say is be the grand parents our grandparents were to us…. praying disciplinarian grandparents lol

  2. tag says:

    I have mixed feelings about this, considering that ‘twerking’ is an African tradition. This type of dancing promotes sexuality, which isn’t a negative thing. The negative act would actually be the premature sexual encounter or the unwanted pregnancy, not the dance itself. I agree that the time and place was innappropriate, as seen in the video above, but suggestive dancing doesn’t mean you’re throwing your life away, in my opinion.

    • Amani Jackson says:

      Caleco I can identify with your comment about traditional dance. However, if our girls did it in that spirit that would be one thing. The manner in which they are twerking is not with tradition in mind. These girls have no idea what African culture is. Twerking, as I mention, alone is not completely deplorable but the mindset and actions that tend to accompany it are what concerns me. Also, it definitely does not mean that they are throwing their lives away but they are presenting a less than appealing image of themselves.

  3. Rebecca says:

    It is distressing to see the direction of our youth today. While it may be considered some type of rite of passage promoting sexuality within African culture, it has definitely been taken waaaay out of context. When I see youngsters, dressed the way the young females and males of today dress, weave extended beyond the buttocks they ever so lewdly shake, behind barred school windows, with no adult supervision, I am simply stupefied by the loss of integrity, decency and progress. We have slipped, nearly beyond the pale, and I agree with Shawnas, and your latter response, Pete.

    • Amani Jackson says:

      We share these sentiments. Many argue that it comes from the African culture, however, it has become a form far more degrading, as their forms are more traditional. Again, I blame us as a society. I blame us for not making it unacceptable. We glorify it so what is the deterrent? Twerking is considered a skill to be proud of, like ballet or tap. Surely there is a place waiting for them at Juilliard.

  4. Amani Jackson says:

    Thanks!

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