Oxygen has decided not to move forward with a reality special that featured a rapper and the 10 women he had 11 children with.
Called “All My Babies’ Mamas,” the hour-long program was to follow rapper Shawty Lo’s unconventional family life and his interactions with his super-sized clan.
But in a statement to CNN, Oxygen said that “All My Babies’ Mamas” is no longer in development.
“As part of our development process, we have reviewed casting and decided not to move forward with the special,” Oxygen said. “We will continue to develop compelling content that resonates with our young female viewers and drives the cultural conversation.”
The program has received an outpouring of negative press since it was announced just before the New Year that the network had ordered the unscripted special, with its critics calling the show racist and exploitative.
A Change.org petition to stop the show’s progress at Oxygen received 37,291 supporters at the time of this post, while a petition hosted by the Color of Change organization received a reported 40,000-plus signatures.The petition were reportedly hand-delivered to Oxygen’s New York offices by author Sabrina Lamb.
Initially, Oxygen stood against the criticism. In a statement to the Hollywood Reporter, the network said the special wasn’t “meant to be a stereotypical representation of everyday life for any one demographic or cross section of society . . . . It is a look at one unique family and their complicated, intertwined life. Oxygen Media’s diverse team of creative executives will continue developing the show with this point of view.”
That, however, has since ceased.
Color of Change is championing that decision, one that the organization said in a statement came after “multiple conversations with Oxygen Media executives.”
“We thank Oxygen Media for taking this important step. The tremendous response from over 40,000 ColorOfChange.org members, coupled with national outrage from Black folks, sent a clear message that exploitative television shows like ‘All My Babies’ Mamas’ are unacceptable,” Color of Change told CNN. “The airing of a reality show like ‘All My Babies’ Mamas’ would have reinforced many of the stereotypes about Black men and women that have power to influence public policy. Research shows that exploiting persistent racial stereotypes that marginalize Black Americans have real world consequences.”