Last month we told you that #whitegirlsrock became a trending topic on Twitter during the airing of the annual Black Girls Rock! awards show. The shocking trend of racial commentary included comments like, If there were a #whitegirlsrock special on TV, it would be declared #racist. #politicallyincorrect #hypocrisy,” and “That #blackgirlsrock show is so racist. Where is the #whitegirlsrock show? Oh right, NAACP would be all over that.” Just plain ole’ foolery at its finest. Black Girls Rock founder, Beverly Bond, recently addresses the insulting hashtag in a blog post for The Root and well, she pretty much echoes how we’ve been feeling about this craziness all along.
“When I heard about the “#whitegirlsrock” hashtag that trended on Twitter, my immediate reaction was, ‘Well, duh! Of course white girls rock. Are they unaware?’ White women’s beauty, talent, diversity and worldly contributions are affirmed everywhere: on billboards, on television, in magazines and in textbooks,” Beverly began.
Though she admits that she had no real issue with #whitegirlsrock becoming a trending topic, what bothered her was the insulting commentary that came along with it.
“As a humanist, I believe that we all rock. My issue is that the commentary that followed the “#whitegirlsrock” hashtag was not even about affirming dynamic white women. Instead, it was about critiquing or even punishing black women for having the nerve, the audacity and the unmitigated gall to love and affirm ourselves!” she wrote.
Beverly adds that platforms such as Black Girls Rock! forces people to realize that things like white privilege do exist, which of course, causes “anxiety” and results in hurtful social media wars such as #whitegirlsrock.
“I also think the anxiety that people have about Black Girls Rock!-ing reveals the blind spots associated with white privilege, including the inability to acknowledge that the privilege actually exists, a lack of accountability for prejudices and an overwhelming deficit in cultural competency. So whoever is offended by Black Girls Rock!-ing and whoever thinks that black empowerment threatens their own power should confront their own racism.”
“It’s insulting and quite nervy for a social media mob to attack a platform that affirms positive images of black women and girls in an attempt to belittle a movement that uplifts and celebrates our lives and legacies—yet to also remain silent about the plethora of damaging media messages directed toward black women and to blatantly ignore the social issues that black people endure.”
Read Beverly’s full blog post at The Root. Thoughts?