Since my original column didn’t allow me to edit it, I decided to put something on here that’s funny. In English class, I had to write about stereotypes. It had to happen to me or I had to be there. With no idea what to write about, my friend told me to write about Cryme Tyme or any other stereotypical gimmick in wrestling. To please him, I decided to write about them. Like most English papers, this is forced and mostly bullshit.
There are many stereotypes in this world. In fact, everyone at least once has been stereotyped. Statistics are mainly why they exist. For example, statistics show that Asian people are extremely smart, which makes many people believe that all Asians are smart. However, there are plenty of Asians out there who aren’t smart at all.
Simply put, stereotypes are just accusations or myths. Sometimes, stereotypes are positive, i.e many people believing athletes can encounters with any girl just because they’re athletic and have money. However, most are negative and hurtful.
The WWE is a professional wrestling company. As many people already know, pro-wrestling isn’t real. The matches, storylines, and characters are generally make believe. Vince McMahon, the owner of WWE, has been known for pushing the envelope and doing controversial tactics. One time he actually had one of his wrestlers pretend he was having a sexual encounter with a women dead in her grave. Another time he had wrestlers pretend to cut off a man’s organ. He even had a women give birth to a hand. Out of all the tawdry tactics McMahon’s pulled, none were more offensive than Cryme Tyme.
The way Shad Gaspard, one half of Cryme Tyme, broke into the business was a show called Tough Enough. It was a show that taught people the ins and outs of the business and decided whether they were fit for the business. The winner of the show received a contact from WWE and a half of a million dollars. Even though Shad didn’t win, the WWE still saw him as a valuable asset to the company, so they decided to hire him. One thing Shad didn’t like about being an African American was the stereotypes he had to deal with. Many people thought he was a thug, but he wasn’t at all. Shad reminded me of Ron Simmons, the first black world champion ever, back in his prime. Simmons just looked like a natural athlete and there was hardly anything stereotypical about him.
So, while I was attending a WWE show, there was a video package that played hyping up this new tag team called Cryme Tyme. At first, I said great, more stereotypical characters. But then I realized Shad Gaspard, alongside his partner who’s name was JTG, was in this team. I was stunned that of all the people that they’d put in this tag team, it would be Shad, someone who hated being stereotyped. The video package shown was them robbing a smoothie store. JTG was wearing a grill, a hat sideways, a bullet proof vest, and tons of jewelry, while Shad had an Afro with a pick in it, a wife-beater, and both had a bandanna to cover their faces. JTG punched the employee of the smoothie store, proceeded to take the money out of the counter, and then gave a shout out to his boys on camera. To top it off, both men were processed as babyfaces, a term that means good guys or fan favorites. They did ruthless things to other people, yet weren’t even considered bad. They were a spoof of what every black person acted like in a so-called entertaining fashion.
Ultimately, it was appalling how someone like Shad Gaspard was forced into doing something like this when he hated being stereotyped. There are always going to be stereotypes; nobody in this world can stop them. However, since it’s all predetermined , they could’ve set an example; instead, they became part of the problem.