A few weeks back T.I. was met with social media critiques after admitting on a podcast that he attends yearly gynecology appointments with his 18-year-old daughter Deyja Harris to “check her hymen.” Following the backlash, the episode was deleted from streaming platforms and Deyja deleted her social media accounts.
Today, T.I. and his wife Tameka “Tiny” Harris appear in a new episode of Jada Pinkett Smith‘s Red Table Talk. The conversation between the couple and Smith addresses masculinity, Black fatherhood and sex. Following the episode, according to Hot New Hip Hop, Deyja’s mother, Ms. Niko took to Instagram to share: “…WHEW CHILE, THE NARCISSISM…” on her Instagram Stories.
In our latest roundup, we’re sharing five things T.I. got wrong when speaking on the social media debacle.
Prior to the conversation, Dr. Michael Eric Dyson presents the idea of T.I. “leveraging his authority as a patriarch.” By admitting he attended the appointments as a method of protection, it further details the lengths he’s willing to go to assert his patriarchal role in Deyja’s life. Additionally, the idea of a major male figure such as a father attending a private doctor visit is problematic in the sense that it takes a sense of agency away from the budding young woman. It also upholds the toxic belief that “virginity” and “purity” are of the utmost importance in Western society.
What T.I. gets wrong about this statement is the belief that a daughter’s virginity and livelihood prior to adulthood must be protected vehemently. This ties in with the misogynistic viewpoint that a young girl’s virginity should be intact and that she is not granted any autonomy. Additionally, “checking her hymen” asserts that the father is in control of her body and what she decides to with it. Smith pushes back by asking was going to the appointments about control or about Deyja’s virginity. He then went on to answer this by sharing that he’s there as a father to provide support, wellness and make sure his children have a sense of self. This shifted the narrative a bit and he went on a bit of a tangent.
T.I.’s explanation that he’s protecting Deyja and his other children from what the world throws at really exposes his problematic view of himself as the family patriarch that needs to maintain control at all times even if it means overexerting his power. He also declares that there’s no such thing as overprotection. It’s ridiculous and laughable if he believes it’s not overprotection to attend his daughter’s gynecology appointments when she was 15 and 16 years old.
Despite expressing that this was the perspective he was trying to get across in the now deleted podcast episode, it still remains clear that T.I. doesn’t understand by even sharing this with his daughters, it still is a male’s viewpoint. He also shares the young men may seek to “defile and destroy” Deyja which is a troubling opinion. This comment diminishes the autonomy of young black girls and women. By creating the narrative that “animalistic urges” are just urges, it erases the fact that young black girls and women are having consensual sex or engaging in consensual sexual activities.
Towards the end of the discussion, T.I. shares that he wasn’t aware “patriarchal” was a term. Following Jada’s definition of the word and how it stem from men’s oppressive thoughts and opinions he admits to believing the judgmental and toxic idea that feminists are attempting to silence men. Jada then said when the “check her hymen” comments surfaced she felt that he didn’t understand why this turned into a huge discussion. “Tiny” then spoke up and shared that he figured out how personal things were when things blew up. He then shared that he believes everything happens for a reason (this doesn’t really clear up whether or not he truly gets Jada’s explanation of patriarchy).
Watch the entire episode below.
Seun Kuti and Black Thought have released three-track remix EP, African Dreams, with production from… Read More
On Thursday, Trevor Noah signed off on his hosting duties of The Daily Show in a… Read More
On Friday, SZA dropped her first album in five years, S.O.S., with appearances from Travis Scott,… Read More
Returning to in-person in January, the Sundance Film Festival 2023 will showcase features on Little… Read More
DC Studios has cancelled Wonder Woman 3, while Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson action film Black… Read More
On Wednesday, Kanye West released new track "Someday We'll All Be Free" on Infowars, a… Read More