On “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta,” K. Michelle and Her Stupid Obsession With Age

Yes, I tuned into what the Rickey Smiley Show billed this morning as the “SuperBowl of Ratchetness,” last night’s reunion episode of “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta,” ready for the tomfoolery that is this cast of misfits, wanna-bes and deeply confused and troubled women who air out their dirty thongs for checks. I was all set to laugh and teach—I let my teenager watch “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” as a cautionary tale on how not to conduct yourself with men, friends and in a business—but within the first five minutes of the show, I just found myself pissed, thanks to K. Michelle’s nasty, base attack on the ages of her cast mates, whom she referred to as “old ass Harriet Tubman bitches.”

Marinate on that. Old ass Harriet Tubman bitches. And as if invoking the name of one of the proudest, most heroic black women in African-American history to insult a fellow woman’s age and looks wasn’t enough, K. Michelle went on to say that cast member Karlie is old enough to have “marched with Martin Luther King back in 1968,” and that she has a wrinkled neck. I’m not even going to get into what that girl said about Karlie’s lady parts. Or how she later again reached into her bag of ageism insults to attack cast member Rasheeda when they got into a tousle over friendships, allegiances and lying.

This morning, the Atlanta Black Star took the words right out of my mouth:

The line was shocking in its ignorance—first, believing that she would be insulting another black woman by calling her Harriet Tubman; second, by using Harriet Tubman’s name in describing a woman that she is trying to call old and ugly, Michelle has reduced a woman who is legendary for her courage and perseverance to a superficial representation of female unattractiveness. It’s the kind of line that should reduce a parent to tears were you ever to hear it coming from your child’s lips, because it would show you that you have failed your child in so many ways.

What has become clear watching the ridiculous proceedings of “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” is that these women have no conception of what it means to realize they represent their mothers, their families, their communities, their race whenever they walk out of the house—regardless of whether they are television stars or just regular girls on the block. There’s just no escaping this fact. Apparently nobody ever told them that.

Clearly. And that K. Michelle made a point, as ABS pointed out, of “dragging the show down deep into the garbage-strewn waste waters of gutter television” with her ridiculous digs at women’s age just took this 43-year-old mother of three all the way over the edge.

Full disclosure: This chick lives in my building. I’ve seen her in the morning. Doing that looong walk of shame down the hallway. With the runny make-up. And the ratty blonde weave snaking across her shoulder. And the push-up bra and six-inch stripper heels. And the skin-tight pants. I’ve also seen her without all these “make me beautiful” trappings. The last thing she needs to be doing is calling another woman ugly and old. Trust.

Instead, what the 26-year-old young ‘un needs to be doing is taking notes. Clearly, K.Michelle’s never been around a 40-something woman before. Because had she, she’d know for sure that there is no one more secure, together, established, independent, focused and effing fly than a 40-something black woman. We’re smarter. More confident. Sexier. And that, “I don’t give a damn what you think” attitude you get?

The. Best. Thing. Ever.

I admit it took me a long time to get to this place—to discover that the older I get, the better I am, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually. I wrote about this very thing on my 43rd birthday. But since I’m almost 100 percent positive Miss Kimberly Pate can’t really handle the big words,  perhaps this list will help her open her eyes. Think 40 is old and washed up? Say that to Mary J. Blige. Halle Berry. Angela Bassett. Salma Hayek. Jennifer Lopez. Jada Pinkett Smith. Diahann Caroll. Ruby Dee. First Lady Michelle Obama.

Every last one of them? Total Badass.

Simply put: 40+ is delicious. You should hope that you make it there, young ‘un, and pray that if and when you do, your ugly ways and broke down hustle don’t keep you from being as fly as any one of these women. Or hell, me.

I give K.Michelle and the rest of the ladies of “Love & Hip Hop Atlanta” a pass, though. I was pretty much that dumb when I was 26. I just didn’t realize it until I hit 40.

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Denene Millner

Mom. NY Times bestselling author. Pop culture ninja. Unapologetic lover of shoes, bacon and babies. Nice with the verbs. Founder of the top black parenting website, MyBrownBaby.

21 Comments

  1. *church fan waving.* The end.

  2. Maturity is a curse and a blessing. It requires Reality to show up. If you think the forties are delicious… Wait-until-the-delectable FIFTIES and those even more Mature blessings. The curse is being mad at yourself for being too dumb to realize your stupidity in your 20s, 30s, and for many, our 40s… But FINALLY getting it… While SYODH… Yes ‘shaking your own damn head’!

  3. BOOM!
    And let the CHURRRRCH say, AMEN!

  4. Most people don’t realize that they are in their teens and twenties for a total of 16 years. The young and dumb mentality affects us all at some point or another when ignorance and tomfoolery are a frequent occurence. But, K Michelle should know better, I’m sure her Mother sent her out into the world with manners. I was born in the 70s when a woman was considered the most beautiful in her 30s, 40s and 50s. The mentality that if you’re over 25 you’re washed up is such an unrealist concept. KMichelle will be in her 30s soon and karma will come to bite her in the ass. She is already considered to old in the industry she works in. SMH….but the Young and Dumb live and learn the hard way, just as the generations before them….I would never want to be in my twenties again.

  5. Uhm that pic of you right there?? ^^^ sums up 40. Please believe it, SLAM Honety!!

    C

  6. And yet more confirmation why I’ve never seen a full episode of this show anyway. total. time. waste. She just don’t know…she gon’ learn though. hopefully.

  7. K Michele is young. Give her a pass, she doesn’t know any better. I remember thinking foolish in my 20s & now I’m at the ripe, rich age of 50 & life truly does get better, especially if you take care of yourself. No-one in the world can’t tell me that I’m not more beautiful now, then when I was in my twenties, and by that I mean inside & out. K Michele needs time to mature. She won’t be 26 forever.

  8. Totally agree. If this beautiful pic is of you at 40+ then HONEY, you are killing the game!

  9. PREACH!
    I’m Enjoying being Fabulous 40, not Stupid 26..but she gone learn today!

  10. Good luck, if K. Michelle can read, you will need a security team, or ear plugs. I think her bark, is worse than her bite!!

  11. Great points. K. Michelle is a damaged, traumatized, ignorant young woman. Her words were ridiculous and awful. She needs much counseling and guidance. Not sure if Rasheeda is 40+ but she certainly lacks the wisdom of her age for many reasons. Her accusations of lying and her insistence on inserting herself in her friend’s marriage while failing to protect her own was just heartbreakingly idiotic. This whole show is a disturbing mess and the master manipulator, Mona’s (who is certainly old enough to know better) exploitation of all their varying states of dysfunction was depressing too.

  12. As a 28 year old woman, I was ashamed for her!!! No words for her ignorance and lack of maturity. Every bit of foolishness that came out her mouth literally trumps all that she could ever want to do to support women, much less domestic abuse survivors. One thing we should all be able to do is praise each other whether it be for our beauty, brains, spirit, whatever as a means to lifting each other up. The ignorance displayed by not only K. Michelle but all of the, dare I say, ladies was appalling. Ms. Mona, just soaked it all in….she could hardly conceal how pleased she was with the foolishness. We have got to do better!!!

  13. I think you’re looking too deep into this or you just don’t like k Michelle but I really don’t see what the issue was with her calling a 40plus yr old aspiring pop singer that claims to be in her 20s old and washed up all the qualities you’ve promoted about 40 plus women Karlie seems to lack and also the fabulous ladies over 40 that you mention all had established careers when they reached that age so maybe Karlie has the issues and need to soak up what K is saying and try doing something else in the industry instead of horrible 2 stepping and trying to sing about Gucci Louie and prada like a teenager that never had that

    • Denene@MyBrownBaby

      Hey there, Go. Thanks for visiting MyBrownBaby—welcome! Because I don’t know K.Michelle personally, I can’t tell you whether I like her or not, so I’m pretty sure YOU can’t assess for me my feelings toward the girl. All I have to go on is how she has continually suggested—not just in the reunion show, but the entire first season—that somehow getting older and being 40 and up is just the most horrible thing that could ever happen to a woman. Pick on her talent if you think she doesn’t have any. Call her out on her business acumen or lack thereof. Question why she hasn’t made it in the industry. But telling a grown woman she’s “old”? As if being blessed by God with the ability to continue breathing past 20 is a bad thing? Sorry—we all should be insulted—and way too grown—for that foolishness. As for Karlie lying about her age: I don’t see the need for it, but perhaps she does. Some women never tell their age—she certainly isn’t the first, particularly in the entertainment industry. What’s funny about this whole thing is that K.Michelle’s never said her age, but all over the internet, she’s anywhere from 26 to 31, depending on where you look. Seems like she may be lying about her age, too. And that’s her prerogative. I, on the other hand, think it’s okay to own it. I’m PROUD to be 43. That’s God’s favor you see in that picture up top.

      • I get it, however, most of K.Michelle’s comments were that Karlie was too old to behave the way she was behaving- at least during the season, I didn’t watch the reunion – that much I agree with. I don’t care how old you are – it’s a blessing to wake up everyday, but, I’m tired of people old enough to have birthed me acting as if they are 16.

  14. Wait! Wait….YOU are 43??? You look 25 yourself!!!! I am 37 and proud of every year that I have been BLESSED to be here. I am looking forward to growing older as gracefully as I can!

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