Soul singer Erykah Badu said the conversation that her controversial “Window Seat” music video started was worth the risk.
Badu knew the video would get people talking.
“I thought it was a move for women and men and children who feel they weren’t good enough. This is just me, I’m good enough.’ I felt it was important enough to do. More pros than cons. I know it was a shocking thing I did. I expected it to provoke dialogue, and it’s an important statement to make. It’s about freeing oneself of the layers and layers of things that we have learned as Americans in this country. At the point of becoming naked and individual and free, either you’re assassinated spiritually or mentally by the group or worse. The words coming out of my head after I was figuratively and literally assassinated was ‘groupthink.’ Groupthink is a term coined by Irving Janis, 1972. It pretty much states what happens when a character or person is ostracized for thinking out of what the consensus is. He or she is pretty much thinking [more] with a heart than with loyalty. It’s an important thing. It’s art. It’s performance art. Art is supposed to spark dialogue and ring an awakening of some sort.” (MTV)
Despite the message, Badu was charged with disorderly conduct by Dallas, Texas police.
Sgt. Warren Mitchell said Friday the decision to cite Badu for disorderly conduct — a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of up to $500 — came after witness Ida Espinosa, 32, of Vernon, offered a sworn statement to police Thursday. Espinosa declined to comment to The Associated Press on Friday. “Having a fact witness that was there is what let us file the charges,” Mitchell said. “After much discussion, we feel that these charges best fit her conduct. She disrobed in a public place without regard to individuals and small children who were close by.” Mitchell said the department has had “people calling from all across the country to express their concern.” (Associated Press)
Badu also confirmed the disorderly conduct charge via Twitter.
“Are you watching , America?,” she wrote yesterday (April 2). “charged on good friday …..return of the ankh . 1 DOLLAR FOR EVERY NEW AMERYKAH PRODUCT SOLD AT GOOD RECORDS TOMORROW WILL GO TOWARD MY BAIL MONEY.THANK YOU . (kidding)but im just sayin the garment of any leader is his people . when stripped of his people his message is lost .” (Erykah Badu’s Twitter)
The singer’s latest album, which features “Window Seat,” landed on the sales charts this week.