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Sunday, August 23, 2015

"Ghetto Kids" - A Problematic Name For A Talented Ugandan Children's Dance Group

Edited by Azizi Powell

About three months ago I came across a video entitled "Ghetto kids dancing" while I was surfing YouTube for videos of African dancing. I chose not to watch that video simply because of its title. It was only after I watched the official video for Eddy Keno's hit Afrobeat song "Sitya Loss"* that I realized that "Ghetto Kids" was the name for the children's dance group that was featured in Eddy Keno's video and in their own videos.

This post showcases one of those videos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mw8gO-ro6Zs "Ghetto Kids Dancing Sitya Loss New Ugandan music 2014 DjDinTV".

While I greatly admire the group's dancing, the focus of this post is on comments from that video's discussion thread that refer to the group's name. It should be noted that many commenters to that discussion thread made the same mistake that I did in assuming that the word "ghetto" was used as a descriptor for those dancers. It's no exaggeration to note that the majority of the comments in that discussion thread** refer to the Ghetto Kids' group name.

Many YouTube discussion threads contain racist comments and profanity and other content that I consider to be objectionable. However, I believe that other comments in a number of YouTube disdussion threads are worthy of reading, documentation, and study for informational, sociological, cultural, and even aesthetic reasons. That's why I often repost selected comments along with the videos that I showcase on this blog. I'm interested in helping to preserve examples of what people write and how they write it, including the use of slang terms and internet/text talk. I'm also interested in the types of internet names that commenters use.

Except for what I consider to be "mild" profanity, I don't quote any comments with curse words or I use an incomplete spelling of that word or the notation "profanity deleted". Also, I rarely repost comments that are racist, homophobic, contain sexually explicit references, or other objectionable content.

With regard to the discussion thread that is the focus of this post were racist, and a smaller number of comments contained profanity, and homophobic references (referring to the boys' dance as being "gay"). However, there were no comments that were sexually explicit. Most of the commenters in the discussion thread for the video featured in this post were written in English. Second in number were comments written in Spanish. In no particular order were comments written in French, Portuguese, Russian, Arabic, Swahili, and in at least one other language that I believe is traditional African, although I can't identify it/them. Most of the non-English commenters either posted their comment without responses, or responded with others writting in that particular language. However, I noted at least one time in which a commenter wrote a question in Russian (identified by Google Translate) about the song the group danced to, and a commenter replied in English.

Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/08/attitudes-assumptions-about-africans.html for a closely related post that quotes additional comments from this same video's discussion thread. Those comments focus on certain attitudes and assumptions that some commenters made about Africans and/or about poor people in general, or about poor children specifically.

*Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/08/eddy-kenzo-sitya-loss-ugandan-video.html for a pancocojams post about the video "Sitya Loss".

** As of 6:57 PM EST, there were 13,181,424 viewer hits for "Ghetto Kids Dancing Sitya Loss New Ugandan music 2014 DjDinTV". That video was published by DjDinTV Uganda Music Videos on January 31, 2015. Also, as of that same date and time there were 5,388 total comments.

UPDATE: July 3, 2016: This video is no longer available on YouTube. I've retained the viewer comments from that now deleted video, but embedded another video of Ghetto Kids dancing.

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SHOWCASE VIDEO: Ghetto Kids dancing StyleZo(Kadondo) by Eddy Kenzo



Eddy Kenzo Published on Jun 19, 2016

SUBSCRIBE: bit.ly/1OSPwZm

Buy Eddy Kenzo Music: apple.co/1RwGYwb

****
AMERICAN SLANG DEFINITIONS FOR "GHETTO"
As background to these selected comments from that Ugandan video's discussion thread, read this entry for slang meanings of "ghetto" that was probably posted by an American. This entry was voted by urbandictionary.com's site's users as the top definition for "ghetto" [retrieved 8/23/2015]
1. (n.) an impoverished, neglected, or otherwise disadvantaged residential area of a city, usually troubled by a disproportionately large amount of crime
2. (adj.) urban; of or relating to (inner) city life
3. (adj.) poor; of or relating to the poor life
4. (adj.) jury-rigged, improvised, or home-made (usually with extremely cheap or sub-standard components), yet still deserving of an odd sense of respect from ghetto dwellers and non-ghetto dwellers alike
1. John's paranoia about triple-checking whether or not he's locked his car doors comes from his growing up in the ghetto
2. "Why you always be talkin' ghetto? Get yo'self a propa' e-ju-ma-kay-shun, kid!"
3. Jane hid her head in embarrasment as her mom shamelessly committed the ghetto act of stuffing the restaurant's bread rolls, sugar packets, and silverware in her purse
4. "A TV Guide duct-taped to a 4 foot stick?! That's one hella ghetto 'mote control!"

by k1 October 12, 2001, http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=ghetto [Warning: urbandictionary.com pages usually contain profanity, racist references, sexully explicit references, and other objectionable references.]

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EDITOR'S COMMENT
I consider the selected examples below to be representative of the numerous omments in that discussion thread about the use of the word "ghetto" in the title "Ghetto Kids Dancing Sitya Loss.." ("Sitya Loss" is a 2014 hit Ugandan Afrobeat record by Eddy Keno). Like my initial assumption when I happened upon another video of this dance group, it seems to me that most of the commenters thought that that "ghetto" was an adjective that was used to belittle the kids. Even after commenters explained that "Ghetto Kids" is the group name that (allegedly) the dancers chose for themselves, other commenters asked why the dancers were called "ghetto" or criticized the use of that word to describe those dancers.

It's difficult to judge nationality by commenters' names. But using that rubic and other comments that they made, it appears that Americans (USA) were the majority but by no means the only ones who either asked why the word "ghetto" was used to refer to those children or who took exception to the use of the word "ghetto" for those children. The fact that comments and questions about the word "ghetto" were raised so often testifies to the concern and passion that commenters had about that topic. Another explanation for the repetition of the same or similar questions and comments is that-given the convoluted nature of YouTube discussion threads in which older comments are sometimes but not always at the bottom of the thread- it's likely that few people read the entire discussion thread or even a good portion of the discussion thread.

The selected comments in this pancocojams post are presented in chronological order with the oldest comments given first, except for their replies. However, these comments may not be in consecutive order.

These examples were gleaned from the comments written in English. No comments below include profanity or racist content. However, as a warning, please be aware that a number of racists comments and a few comments that include profanity and/or homophobic references can be found in that YouTube discussion thread.

I'm reposting these selected comments with a very limited amount of editorial comments. I've assigned numbers for referencing purposes only.

****
SELECTED COMMENTS FROM THIS EMBEDDED VIDEO (July 3, 2016)
(All of these comments are from 2016)
Torri-Ann Whittaker
"alex is missing but ada killed it"
-snip-
"Killed it" here means danced the extremely well (danced the best of all of the dancers).

**
Reply
Bwoi Meemz
"Which one is ADA?"

**
Reply
Torri-Ann Whittaker
"+Bwoi Meemz the boy that danced at 1:48"

**
Reply
Dmariel
"What ? ._. Could you explain please?"

**
Reply
Torri-Ann Whittaker
"+Dmariel alex died last year but ada the on the right of the tumbnail danced the best"

**
faith imani
"wish alex was still here ...he could have nailed it dead. .r.i.p sweetie"
-snip-
"Nailed it" here means perfectly performed the dance.

**
Diego Cabrera
"WOW!! Stylish kids! Loved to see them grow into fine young people. Love the music and the smile and joy on their faces!! This kind of music lifts up my soul, spirit and hope!!"

**
chris maloney
"Better now ghetto kids no more torn clothes ... Way to go now... Enjoy your success kids..."

**
Asedri Amin
"There is no doubt that Eddy Kenzo and his Ugandan kids he Nickname " ghetto kids " are revolutionizing Ugandan musical culture. I wish them every success in their career."

**
MsMissme2011
"Wait... Are you sure Eddy named them "Ghetto Kids"? Because I could've sworn their manager Dauda Kavuma gave them that name.

**
Reply
Asedri Amin
"+MsMissme2011 I'm sure you know the specifics."

**
Reply
MsMissme2011
"+Asedri Amin Well I can tell you that these are not Eddy's kids. They're Dauda Kavuma's kids, he just lets Eddy use them in his videos some times."

**
Reply
Asedri Amin
"+MsMissme2011 thanks for the insight."

**
Reply
debunkys
"Come on now by saying Eddy kenzo's kids he didnt mean they are his bioligical children"

**
Reply
Asedri Amin
"+debunkys sorry you misunderstood me I know for sure these kids are not biological children to Eddy Kenzo"

**
faith imani
"wish alex was still here ...he could have nailed it dead. .r.i.p sweetie"

**
Reply3
Torri-Ann Whittaker
"alex is missing but ada killed it"

**
Reply
Bwoi Meemz
"Which one is ADA?"

**
Reply
Torri-Ann Whittaker
"+Bwoi Meemz the boy that danced at 1:48"

**
Reply
Dmariel
"What ? ._. Could you explain please?"

**
Reply
Torri-Ann Whittaker
"+Dmariel alex died last year but ada the on the right of the tumbnail danced the best"

**
chris maloney
"Better now ghetto kids no more torn clothes ... Way to go now... Enjoy your success kids..."

**
Diego Cabrera
"WOW!! Stylish kids! Loved to see them grow into fine young people. Love the music and the smile and joy on their faces!! This kind of music lifts up my soul, spirit and hope!!"

**
L Pelt
"Love them all..but Ronnie (1:09, 1:52 ) killed it!"

**
MsMissme2011
"King Ada @ 3:25 and then his dance and slow motion at the end of the video is the highlight of the video for me. That boy is Lit!! I love all these kids, they're all super talented and I really love me some Ada lol"
-snip-
"Lit"= on fire (dancing very well; with a lot of energy"

**

marcus allen
"I actually think that in this particular video, the kid on the left was the better dancer. Love these kids though!"

**
MsMissme2011
"+marcus allen The kid on the left is Fred he dances with a lot of energy and he can dance his lil butt off. Tho we may have our favorite dancer of the group, all of these kids are amazingly talented. Each of them bring something different to the group. The one on the right is Ada I really like his swag and the smoothness of his dance moves."

**
muzo2008
"i wish the could go by a different name,i have this thing about what you call yourself is who you become."

**
Reply
Kreyol Doll
"Ghetto in Africa means slum. They are called Ghetto kids because they are from the slum areas. It's not the same connotation as here in the States."

****
SELECTED COMMENTS [UPDATE July 3, 2016- These comments are from the now deleted video's discussion thread]
1. Pandicorn star, January 2015
"Why are they ghetto? Because there black? Not every black person is ghetto. White people can be ghetto."

**
2. Janet Alexander, January 2015
"the group is called Ghetto Kids...gosh nah"

**
3. blacksultan85, January 2015
"afican ghetto kids got skillz"

**
4. Korkor Marbell, February 2015
"Just kids dancing - no ghetto!"

**
5. mariah21000, February 2015
Reply
"+Korkor Marbell getto have a nother meaning over there, it doesnt mean the Same as in USA"

**
Reply
6. Korkor Marbell, February 2015
"@mariah21000 what does 'ghetto' mean over there then? For all you know is I could be talking to you from over there, lol."

**
7. Korkor Marbell, February 2015
"Not everyone that interact here is from the US. Ghetto is ghetto and means ghetto, English word. Not African word."

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8. Korkor Marbell, February 2015
"So my initial comment stands as - as kids dancing - no ghetto. Be blessed."

**
9. mariah21000, February 2015
"It means poor in africa you will know that if you were african. They are very well brought up kids and diciplined.so they have a good Character and Familie values. Thats not the Same thing like in america when one says "oh my God he is so getto ". Thats a different meaning. And i mentioned American getto for foreigners who might missunderstand the meaning here to the Same .Its different, they call themselves getto kids thats their stage Name coz they come frm poor Background ("getto"). And i was talking of meaning of getto in america , not refering to People in america, you can know American english without being in america."

**
10. Korkor Marbell, February 2015
"You're the expert, so no need for me to say anymore. Be blessed!"
-snip-
End of that sub-conversation.

**
11. Dan Heather February 2015
"This is a Professionally Produced Production... I'd say shot with a Canon 5D with Wide Lens... Perfectly Framed, Centered & Leveled... perfectly practiced and choreographed .. this is Not some kids that decided to get together to strut their stuff one afternoon during Child Labor activities."

**
12. Abraham Maru, February 2015
"We know that."

**
13. Lehison, February 2015
HAAATER?!
-snip-
“Hater” = a person who criticizes someone for no legitimate reason (because he or she is jealous of that person or just likes to put people down)

**
14. Dan Heather, February 2015
"No, just stating something that's not immediately obvious to the average viewer."

**
15. tube or not tube, March 2015
"+Dan Heather I figured after I search for the song and group but it still is awesome. I can easily imagine even real kids with same spirit in africa. I am from India and there was this argument afer slum dog millionaire that are kids really that innocent in indian slums. I like to believe they are and any sense of superficiality that comes across while acting in a movie or music video should not be conflicted with their innocence."

**
16. Laura Tich, April 2015
"+Dan Heather I wish people could understand your comment. Thank you for your perception of Africa. I think what Dan is saying is that these kids are not poor or subjected to child labor...on the contrary, they are free to do what they love which in this case is dancing. And this video was professionally shot. Good work kids."

Najivunia kuwa Mwafrika

**
17. Femi Ogunyiola, April 2015
"+Dan Heather This was actually a planned and professionally produced video, you are 100% right. Ghetto kids is just a name of the group."

**
18. Smile :), June 2015
"They arent ghetto just cause they are black or because they dont live in a "perfect environment". These kids arent ghetto at all. The word ghetto is thrown around way too much."

**
19. Olivia Finston-fox, July 2015
"For people wondering ghetto is just the name of the group nothing to do with race or anything they probably chose it themselves so chill"
-snip-
"chill" = cool out, don't get upsetq
-snip-
End of selected comments from that sub-conversation.

**
20. Leo' Rock, March 2015
"Slum kids dancing, not ghetto pls. Talented dancers wow"
-snip-
"pls"= please

**
21. tingahammer, March 2015
"Ghetto means "street children". In the East African sense, it means they do not have parents and/or family members to support them. They fend for themselves mostly by foraging dustbins/trashcans for food etc."

**
22. raan chol, March
"ghetto not something to be ashamed of bro it is the place where people who have been victimized by the system lived."


**
23. Christina Davila, April 2015
"STOP CALLIN THEM GHETTO THATS LIKE RASIST AND CALLIN TGHEM OUT! [profanity deleted] YOU SHOULD HAVE THOUGHT OF THAT BEFORE YOU NAMED IT THAT! DAM SO [profanity deleted] RASIS! IM REPORTING A,, THE VIDEOS YOU LABELED WITH THE WORD GHETTO! WHOS WITH ME?!"
-snip-
Rasis= misspelling of the word “racist”

**
Reply
24. Brunel M'bodi, May 2015
"+Christina Davila Ghetto has different meaning in Africa. it mean poor children. so basically it mean poor children who dont have anything but still happy :)"

**
Reply
25. Christina Davila, May 2015
"+Brunel M'bodi its still kinda mean sounding :/"

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Reply
26. Brunel M'bodi, May 2015
"Lol. i dont think so"
-snip-
End of that sub-conversation.

**
27. Matilda Salazar April 2015
"For anyone who doesn't know "Ghetto Kids" is the name of their group. They chose that name.. its not like people are just calling then ghetto cause they are "black""

**
28. Alvin Germain, May 2015
"Maybe its how there dancing"

**
Reply
29. Prin Peach, May 2015
"in you cannot call someone ghetto because of the way they are dancing. Dancing is a work of art and what is the word ghetto?. I'll tell ya. That word is used to describe and label black people when caught having fun, like any other race but only black people get called ghetto."

**
Reply
30. Mike Tayon, May 2015
"+Pandicorn star Yeah, but we get called TRASH then, same same LOL ;)"
-snip-
End of that sub-conversation.

**
31. Payden Charles, May 2015
"GHETTO KIDS is the name of the dance group"

**
32. nubiangirl11, June 2015
"There should be a better name for these children and NOT ghetto"

**
33. mariah21000, May 2015
"Getto has a different meaning in africa, especialy in east africa , getto simply means one coming from a poor Background , and it has nothing to do with their Character ,they are very well brought up Kids , judging from the Interviews I have been seeing of them. People Do missunderstand the getto in african content."

**
34. Kwabena God, May 2015
"What a world. Where I am from, being ghetto is an honor/honour. We all aspire to be ghetto."

**
35. Triplets Club-Ghetto Kids . Uganda, May 2015
"Alex Ssempijja,
Bashir Lubega,
Isaac Tumusiime,
Fred Tumwusigye,
Patricia Nabakooza,

We are 'THE GHETTO KIDS " We will never forget were we came from .."

**
36. Josephine Juma, May 2015
"It is sad that people are making negative/racist comments about these rising stars. Yessss! These kids may come from a poor area and the group decides to call itself "Ghetto Kids"... You can sit here and make your negative/racial comments but guess what.... It is all up in your head. They had fun and the video (as I am typing) has 9,199,9696 views. Go figure!!! The last time I checked.... Ghetto means, "a section of a city, especially a thickly populated slum area, inhabited predominantly by members of an ethnic or other minority group, often as a result of social or economic restrictions, pressures, or hardships." So... they dont' have a right to call themselves ghetto? I looooove the song. It is in fact my ringtone. Now go educate yourselves."

**
37. Abraham Maru, May 2015
"+Iyana Graham there is no such thing as ghetto in East Africa. I know they call them slums."

**
38. Simon Libafu, May 2015
"In East Africa, we use 'ghetto' to mean slums as well. Nice clip.

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39. Abraham Maru, May 2015
"Where are you from my friend where slums are called ghetto?"

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40. Abraham Maru, May 2015
"Not in My country. We Call 'em slums and a slew of other local names. Never heard 'em refered to as Ghetto. Nothing really wrong with term Ghetto."

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41. James Peter , May 2015
"I only came here because I found the title offensive. Why not just title the video "Ugandan kids dancing"?. I don't see Ghetto kids, in fact there is nothing suggesting these kids are ghetto, and even if they were that is so irrelevant to the video that it makes you wonder why that was even mentioned."

**
42. mariah21000, May 2015
"+James Peter this have been explained a Million times , gosh! Look the meaning of getto in africa before comenting.

**
Reply
43. Triplets Club-Ghetto Kids . Uganda, May 2015
"+ Block o Butter
Nothing will change the reality ... We born on a ghetto ..Our mother ,brothers and sister's live in a Ghetto ..We will never forget were we came from ....

**
Reply
44. Block o Butter, May 2015
"+Triplets Club-Ghetto Kids . Uganda Yes, never forget your culture. I'm not criticizing your culture, I'm making a standard scientific statement.
-snip-
Editor: Block o Butter made several comments about Black Americans being the majority of people in prisons in the United States not just because of poverty but also because (according to him) scientific research indicates that Black people aren't as intelligent as other races.

**
45. Simba Kali, May 2015
"+Block o Butter you would be the dumbest i have ever encountered on YouTube"

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Reply
46. Block o Butter, May 2015
"Simba Kali Haha, thanks."
-snip-
End of that sub-discussion.

**
47. Elizabeth Isaacson, May 2015
"These children make me happy and inspire me. I love seeing how they do not let their torn clothes or tough lives break their spirits."

**
Reply
48. alma lewis, May 2015
"These kids have clothes do your research"

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Reply
49. Elizabeth Isaacson, May 2015
"Wow Alma Lewis I realized that at first the title threw me. Yet in no way deserve your rude comment. Actually I was raised in the ghetto up in NY and most of my childhood I didn't have many clothes at all and the ones I had were bought at the salvation army. I received a new pair of $3.00 sneakers called skippys. I was not knocking them or trying to place judgment merely thought it was cool they kept smiles and yes later was told that it was a band. I could say something mean but being that I am a child of God and Jesus says treat others as you wish to be treated I am going to pray for you instead and love you."

**
Reply
50. alma lewis, May 2015
"+Elizabeth Isaacson my bad. Elizabeth Isaacson sorry as well I was not trying to be rude only addressing your remark concerning the cloths I did not like the remark for you see the video looked more like where I grew up I was not raised in the city but in the country where the what you called streets we called dirt roads when it rains the roads were muddy we killed a lot of snakes inside and outside of our 3 room house we had wood stoves not a furnace we had well water that was drawn from the ground with a rope not a faucet and yes living in the country we went bare foot a lot of times I could say more but as you said I to am a Christian but said in a previous remark I so enjoy the kids dancing that was that nothing more the old home place is still there the snake's and dirt roads are also still there we go by every now and then just to be reminded and I did get offended when you eluded to the clothes not only you but anyone else. You're from NY I'm from Okla where you see more country than city no offense. Intended maybe we both learned something you be Blessed as well"
-snip-
"My bad" = African American Vernacular English term meaning "I'm sorry" (I apologize.)

**
Reply
51. Elizabeth Isaacson, May 2015
"Alma I was a hillbilly girl first and know how to pull water from a well and even use an outhouse have a potbelly stove to cook and heat bricks and wrap em in a towel to keep warm at night. I was mostly barefoot and dirt roads were what I was used to. We were called Tobacco Road by many of the city slickers and rich folks that used to drive by. Then Mom moved us to the ghetto and so I do understand and in no way meant to offend. I do love all and am sure you I understand what it is like to be misjudged and I am sorry if I said anything to offend it is not who I am. Go with God and know I mean that with love."

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52. Atukunda Joseph, June 2015
"They don't have a "tough " life per se. Well, it's complicated. You have to be African to understand it."

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53. Prin Peach, July 2015
"I'm African. I know the struggles. However can I just say Elizabeth there was nothing wrong with your first comment. You watched the video and saw it in another prospective than other. And i don't know much about you but just your name now, I'm going to be honest and say that i truly admire your personality and your attitude towards life (judging by the way you've handle the first and last response on your comment). Stay blessed and may God continue to bless you and your loved ones."

**
Reply
54. Elizabeth Isaacson, July 2015
"Thank you Prin Peach I truly meant no harm and try very hard to never judge anyone...I love everyone.... Thank you for seeing my true heart and God bless you too <3"
-snip-
End of selected comments from this sub-conversation

**
55. Lauren Ward, June 2015
"Really? Omg...wake up call!
*That's something they named themselves, not just we call them (I know this for a fact)
*The word "ghetto" originates from where Jews were kept during WWll
*Some people from the ghetto aren't insulted by the word or maybe even take pride because that's where they're from NOT WHO THEY ARE.
*Ghetto doesn't mean black because guess what, every race can have a ghetto.
*you associated the word ghetto with black so maybe you're the racist one."

**
56. Somali pirate, June 2015
"Poor Kids With ripped cloth. were Are their parents ?"

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Reply
57. l Ihemeje, June 2015
"Use your brain read the tittle"

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Reply
58. Somali pirate, June 2015
"+Angel Ihemeje title says "ghetto kids" why use the name ghetto? poor africans don't know what ghetto means"

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59. Naija Christine, August 2015
"+Somali pirate It's different meaning in other parts of the world. Besides "Ghetto Kids" is their group name, and those clothes were costumes. If you see their other songs and such you will see that they do not dress that way."

**
60. kaporillo84ooooooooo, June 2015
"I don't see anything ghetto about this. It't not their fault that dance, music, hip hop and Rhythm was born there. People, remember where your roots are from."

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61. cinnamonstar808, June 2015
"why are they called ghetto? its it their Name of their group? cause to me that just look like any regular neighborhood. Arent those manicured lawn+trees to the left People are too Americanized. Poor & Ghetto are not the same. Poor is economics Ghetto is political + a mindset"

**
62. Unruly Hesbon, July 2015
"Ghetto yutes are the futute....Ghetto full of talent..love it"

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63. Lucy Nzowa, July 2015
"I know hey, like seriously .
Theres nothing ghetto about these happy kids having fun. #dontlikeignorantpeople"

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64. Richard O, August 2015
"It is all about money, not skin colour. These kids are visibly poor. Look at their torn clothes and shoes (if they have any). Ghetto is a poor neighbourhood"

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65. melinda a, August 2015
"why they have to be ghetto?"
-snip-
Here are two additional comments that I want to include in this post:

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66. hibaq abdulqadir, June 2015
"The ghetto Title is Misleadying. These Children are Kings and Queens of Africa. They have their rightful way. Love them.

**
67. nancy valerie, July 2015
"This is what we call talent..dancing flowing in the vein.l love it .proud to be a ghetto n african"

****
EDITOR'S COMMENT
In my title of this post, I described the Ugandan's dance group's name as "problematic". I consider that name to be problematic because the word "ghetto" could be interpreted (and appears to often be interpreted) as an insulting descriptor. I think that this is especially the case for Americans and others who are familiar with the American slang use of the word "ghetto". It seems to me that a lot of energy was used in this featured Ghetto Kids discussion thread-and perhaps in other Ghetto Kids discussion threads- in explaining the meaning of the group's name and differentiating it from that American slang meaning.

That said, I recognize the group's desire to acknowledge and honor their roots as expressed in their two comments given above. And I feel that it would be presumptuous of me to recommend that the group change their names because some people-even a lot of people- outside of their nation misunderstand what that name means. But since the internet reaches people throughout the world, perhaps it would be helpful for that group to include a statement with their videos that "Ghetto Kids" is the chosen name of the group and that in Uganda, the word "ghetto" means "poor" and nothing more than that.

****
My thanks to this Ugandan group and to all those who are quoted in this post.

Thanks for visiting pancocojams.

Visitor comments are welcome.

2 comments:

  1. Regarding comment #3 "afican ghetto kids got skillz", this comment may express the belief that African children (or people) in poor communities are more creative than in more well to do communities. I've read a related belief or assumption about African Americans that African Americans from the "hood" (poor or working class neighboorhoods) are more creative than well to do African Americans -regarding dancing, singing/rapping... The idea is that this is so because they (we) are more authentic, more [for] real, less inhibited by artificial (mainstream) society rules.

    **
    With regard to the use of the word "ghetto" in Africa as a synonym for "economically poor" but rich in creativity, here's a comment from a Nigerian blogger:
    https://nigeriansaral.wordpress.com/tag/nigerian-dance-history/
    The Nigerian Dance Culture, September 4, 2010 – 12:51 am, By Augustine Ogwo
    ."Prior to the advent of the makossa dance, the galala dance was the official dance in every Nigerian ghetto community. This dance style was highly promoted by prominent Nigerian acts who happen to be an offspring of the ghetto community. Some notable acts that stood tall to promote the galala cause include Daddy Showkey, Baba Fryo & African China".

    -snip-
    I plan to publish a post ASAP on this pancocojams blog on Nigerian's galala dance. When I've done so, I'll add the link to this comment thread.

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    1. Click http://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2015/08/nigerias-daddy-showkeys-galala-dance.html for the pancocojams post "Nigeria's Daddy Showkey's Galala Dance (information, videos, & comments) ."

      Daddy Showkey is from Ajegunle (A.J. City), a district in Lagos, Nigeria that is referred to as a ghetto. Daddy Showkey's nickname is "Ghetto soldier".

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