Whether it’s a table-flipping catfight or stinging allegations of a marital affair between castmates, the bar keeps getting raised for reality television year after year. But particularly in the Black community, a chorus of critics have accused shows like Real Housewives of Atlanta and Love & Hip Hop of propagating painful racial stereotypes, especially regarding Black women, in order to drive ratings. In the following open letter written exclusively for BET.com, Carlos King, executive producer of Real Housewives of Atlanta and Hollywood Divas, answers his critics.
I often get asked the question, “Do you have any guilt for perpetuating negative stereotypes of Black women on reality television?” And my answer is always a simple: No. I then always ask myself if my white counterparts get asked the same question, and I highly doubt they do, so why the double standard?