Are They Really 'Rapin' Everybody Out Here'?

We've become so lost in our obsession with Antoine Dodson and the "Bed Intruder Song" that we've completely forgotten to talk about the real issue: sexual assault in the black community.

Posted:
 
antoine20dodson400

Unless you have been living under a rock for the past couple of weeks, you know who Antoine Dodson is. He became an overnight cyber star thanks to an interview he and his sister Kelly gave to an Alabama NBC news affiliate. With a red bandanna on his head, chomping on gum, Antoine, who is believed to be gay, dramatically told the story of how, in the middle of the night, a man with a "coffee complexion and a low-cut Caesar" climbed up the fire escape and tried to rape his sister Kelly.

Antoine heard his sister scream and ran into her room to help her, but the intruder escaped. Both had messages for the attacker. Kelly said, "Either you was a crack head or you was high or you wanted some more dope. You did it for something; you know what I'm saying? It just ain't because I'm pretty -- I know that!"

Antoine said, "You don't have to come and confess and say that you did it. We looking for you, we gonna find you. So you can run and tell that, homeboy."

No, the Talented Tenth are not amused.

It's not like we haven't seen our people showboating on the news before, rocking pajamas, rollers and doo-rags. But this clip was "special." I and other critics suspect that our unfortunate pastime of laughing at ghetto fabulousness and effeminate gay men served as a catalyst for its infamy.

And thanks in part to Web sites that thrive on those two things -- most notably the über-popular gossip blog Bossip -- the news clip went super viral. It was posted and reposted to countless Facebook pages and Twitter accounts, becoming the most watched clip of the week on You Tube. Parts of the segment have been edited, auto tuned, dubbed "The Bed Intruder" song and remixed more times than Lil Wayne's "A Milli." Currently, Antoine has a Facebook fan page, a T-shirt line, a ring tone and an iTunes single. I wouldn't be surprised if a reality show is on the horizon.

It can't be denied that Antoine is a hero and should be celebrated. But it also can't be denied that Kelly -- the actual victim -- has been completely erased from the conversation. Look, I am not innocent either.

Editor's note: An earlier version of this article misspelled the surname of Kelly and Antoine Dodson.

Kellee Terrell is a Brooklyn, N.Y.-based freelance writer who writes about race, gender, health and pop culture. Terrell is also the news editor for TheBody.com, a Web site about HIV/AIDS.

Comments
The Root encourages respectful debate and dialogue in our commenting community. To improve the commenting experience for all our readers we will be experimenting with some new formats over the next few weeks. During this transition period the comments section will be unavailable to users.

We apologize for any inconvenience and appreciate your continued support of The Root.

While we are experimenting, please feel free to leave feedback below about your past experiences commenting at The Root.
Must-See Family Attractions
July 29 2014 2:13 PM