All Articles Tagged "Jada Pinkett Smith"
Here’s Why It Ain’t Happenin’: An Answer To Jada Pinkett-Smith’s Question About Putting White Folks On Black Magazines
Jada Pinkett-Smith has been raising lots of good discussions lately, unfortunately this new one is not one of them.
From Jada’s Facebook Page:
“Will there ever be a day in which women will be able to see each other beyond race, class, and culture?
There is a question I want to ask today. I’m asking this question in the spirit of thinking outside of the box in order to open doors to new possibilities. These possibilities may be realistic or unrealistic. I also want to make it clear that there is no finger pointing here. I pose this question with the hope that it opens a discussion about how we can build a community for women based upon us all taking a deeper interest in one another. An interest where skin color, culture, and social class does not create barriers in sharing the commonality of being… women. With love and respect to all parties involved, my question is this…if we ask our white sisters, who tend to be the guardians of the covers of mainstream magazines, to consider women of color to grace these covers, should we not offer the same consideration to white women to grace our covers? Should women extend their power to other women simply because they are women? To my women of color, I am clear we must have something of our own, but is it possible to share in the spirit in which we ask our white sisters to share with us? I don’t know the answer and would love to hear your thoughts.”
The snarky side of me is like, well, the way some of these magazines geared towards African Americans are going nowadays, they might as well start putting white women on the cover. However, Essence magazine’s internal politics is neither here nor there. The real question is, what the heck is Pinkett-Smith talking about?
Now I know there are a million and one reasons why we love Mrs. Pinkett-Smith. She’s a funky alternative married black chick with a rock band; who was in a Matrix sequel; and is courageously raising super free-spirited black children. However, I won’t lie and say that after reading her thoughts about integrating black magazines like Essence, I didn’t feel like saying, “Flower child, please go sit down and stop wearing rose-colored sunglasses at night. They are blinding you.” In fact, I’m pretty sure I did say that to myself. Nevertheless, it is Mrs. Pinkett-Smith we are talking about here. And we love her. Besides, she was brave enough to ask a question, which I am certain others have thought about as well. Therefore, I’m going to try my best to answer as thoughtful as possible. Feel free to expand in the comment section below if you feel so inclined.
Let’s address this idea which seems to permeate a lot of our thinking, particularly among the aspirational class. The idea that racism and all of this segregation between the races is just the result of a cause and effect situation. As such, black folks have an obligation to admit and own up to racism against white folks if we are to join hands collectively for a chorus of “We Are the World.” That is the post-racial and reverse racism talk that folks, including some of our own folks, are so fond of nowadays. If only reality was that easy. We could solve a whole host of discrimination and other social injustices in the world if people with darker hue would just stop doing what it is we’re doing to cause all this racism to happen to us.
Truth of the matter is that reverse racism is complete bullcrap. And I’m not so convinced about the concept of a post-racial society either. I don’t have the column space to go through the history and development of the Western world, so for the sake of time, let’s just say that there have been socio-political constructs, which enabled folks of a lighter hue opportunities to amass power and wealth through the marginalizing and subjugating of people of a darker hue. These strategies have been reinforced through such tools as colonization, slavery, genocide and apartheid, the latter of which enabled the systematic denial of careers, educations, housing, land, resources and other basic wealth building to black people.
Therefore, many of these black publications came about in response to not only a visual need to present a more balanced version of beauty, but out of a response to an economic and professional isolation. These historically black publications gave black folks a voice in shaping what is fashionable and beautiful by way of employing predominately black men and women writers, photographers and decision makers who make up the editorial board. This is important to note as despite the continued breaking of color barriers on the covers and stages of some of the world’s most known media outlets, behind the covers is the shrill reminder that the national rate of black media professionals working in mainstream press rooms still remain below an already dismal five percent, this according to the National Association of Black Journalists. And as we are witnessing what is happening at CNN with journalists of color like Soledad O’Brien and Roland Martin getting pushed out, this situation for black media professionals doesn’t look all that promising in the new year.
In a perfect world there would be no need for Essence, Ebony, Jet or any other publication geared to folks of darker hues only, in this case, African Americans. However, we don’t live in the perfect world; instead we live in a world where all things are not equal. And as this entire society serves as a shrine to the white man and woman image, imagination and value systems, the only counter action is to acknowledge, uphold and in some cases create belief systems of our own. Now are the publications, which have charged themselves with carrying that torch always perfect in how they even represent us? No. And that is an entire new column topic right there. But if a black publication can not even encompass that basic missive of giving voice to a group, who have been continually denied access to historically white publications than it is no less racist. Because the backlash against a system that has oppressed people of color since its inception is not racist, it is justice.
Should White Women Be Featured on the Cover of Magazines Geared Towards Black Women? Jada Pinkett-Smith Thinks So
Actress Jada Pinkett-Smith has been utilizing social media to speak out against what she believes to be social injustices, unfair practices and society’s questionable behavior a lot lately. Recently, she tackled the subjects of blended families and the media’s bullying of teen stars. Now, in a statement posted to her Facebook page, the 41-year-old mother of two is expressing that in order for mainstream magazines to consider putting Black women on their covers, publications geared towards Black women should also consider putting White women on theirs. Her statement reads:
“Will there ever be a day in which women will be able to see each other beyond race, class, and culture? There is a question I want to ask today. I’m asking this question in the spirit of thinking outside of the box in order to open doors to new possibilities. These possibilities may be realistic or unrealistic. I also want to make it clear that there is no finger pointing here. I pose this question with the hope that it opens a discussion about how we can build a community for women based upon us all taking a deeper interest in one another. An interest where skin color, culture, and social class does not create barriers in sharing the commonality of being… women.”
“With love and respect to all parties involved, my question is this…if we ask our white sisters, who tend to be the guardians of the covers of mainstream magazines, to consider women of color to grace these covers, should we not offer the same consideration to white women to grace our covers? Should women extend their power to other women simply because they are women? To my women of color, I am clear we must have something of our own, but is it possible to share in the spirit in which we ask our white sisters to share with us? I don’t know the answer and would love to hear your thoughts.”
Would you say that Jada has a point?
Will Smith Says To Be Married, ‘You Have to Be Willing to Collide with the Weakest Parts of Yourself’
When seemingly unbreakable Hollywood couples are discussed, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith are a pair that often come to mind. We’ve watched their 17-year relationship blossom before our eyes and it appears to grow stronger each day. Will recently discussed love, marriage, and the importance of striving to be better for your partner, during a recent appearance in Philly, reports Necole Bitchie. Check out a bit of what he had to say.
On the importance of being the best possible person for your partner:
“When we got started, we both truly connected on wanting to be better. That’s where it all started. There were other people that we were dating and other people that we were attracted to, but there was a commitment to constantly be better that was what we connected on. Our whole world and relationship was that, “Hey, I know that I may not be all of that today but what I’m not going to do is lay around and not keep working to be better to deserve you.”
“I would say that concept is very central to having any success in this game of love at all. The central idea of love is not even a relationship commitment, the first thing is a personal commitment to be the best version of yourself with or without that person that you’re with. You have to every single day, mind, body, and spirit, wake up with a commitment to be better. Don’t make that same mistake tomorrow that you made today.”
On why “deal breakers” are a contradiction of love:
“The idea is that you are two people together, but in that process, the marriage cannot be a prison. There has to be a freedom that allows a person to grow. A person has to be allowed to make mistakes, and a person has to be allowed to become and grow without the threat of punishment. I think that in the concept of our marriages because of our own insecurities, we lay it out in a way like, ‘Hey, that’s a deal breaker.’ I hear people talk about the concept of the deal breakers and it’s really in conflict with loving somebody.”
On addressing insecurities:
“When I think about my relationship with Jada, when it comes to love, as soon as you put yourself in a love relationship, you’ve got to check your insecurities. When you love somebody, and you feel yourself slipping, you will fight, scratch, and claw, to not be in that uncomfortable space. You have traumas that happen with your mother and father, or an old girlfriend, or an old boyfriend, that you’ve got to address personally if you want to truly be able to love somebody. Our traumas keep us away from being able to truly love someone unconditionally.”
“In this world, there are difficulties with just getting out of the bed everyday. Trying to love on top of that is excruciating. It is absolutely not something to be taken lightly or easy when you say you’re going to marry somebody, you have to be willing to go through hell. You have to be willing to collide with the weakest parts of yourself…”
On how being married to Jada has changed him for the better:
“Jada has made me a better person than anyone on earth could have every done. There is nobody on Earth at this point that in my life and in my career with the successes and the things that I’ve done, there is nobody on Earth that I would still try to be better for. [...] Jada is a beast. Just her passion, power, and relentless unwillingness to let me lay down at night when I’ve only done 92 percent of what I was supposed to do that day, holds me to a higher standard.”
Will and Jada appear to have a beautiful relationship and he’s dishing out some pretty sound advice.
What are your thoughts on his outlook on love, commitment and relationships?
If you’ve ever had to remove a negative comment from one of your social media streams, then you know how pungent the effects of cyberbullying can be. Willow Smith has decided to take action against these kind of online attacks by teaming up with Seventeen Magazine’s “Delete Digital Drama” campaign.
The 12-year-old-singer will be one of the celeb activists behind the initiative which seeks to empower young women to disengage from cyberbullying by deleting harsh and mean comments they see on their Twitter, Facebook and Instagram pages. This announcement comes just days after her mother, Jada Pinkett Smith, released a lengthy statement about online bullying towards young celebs via her Facebook page.
You can check the rest out over on Essence. Perhaps this is the reason why Jada started talking about online bullying – kind of pre-promoting Willow’s latest endeavor.
Have you or anyone you know ever been cyber bullied?
Jada Pinkett has been using her Facebook page to air out all sorts of social commentaries lately. Last week, she asked why so many heterosexual women were turning to other women as a last romantic resort, on Saturday, she talked about the oppression men have been forced to endure, and on Sunday she spoke out on what she considers to be bullying towards young celebrities at the hands of the media. She wrote in her post titled, “Are We Bullying Our Young Artists,” which included a photo of Rihanna, Justin Beiber, Taylor Swift, and Quvenzhané Wallis:
How can we ask for our young stars to have a high level of responsibility if we are not demonstrating that same level of responsibility towards them?
This last week, I had to really evaluate the communication in regard to our young artists in the media. I was trying to differentiate cyber-bullying from how we attack and ridicule our young stars through media and social networks. It is as if we have forgotten what it means to be young or even how to behave like good ol’ grown folk. Do we feel as though we can say and do what we please without demonstrating any responsibility simply because they are famous?
Is it okay to continually attack and criticize a famous 19 year old who is simply trying to build a life, exercise his talents while figuring out what manhood and fame is all about as he carries the weight of supporting his family as well as providing the paychecks to others who depend on him to work so they can feed their families as well? Does that render being called a Douchebag by an adult male photographer as you try to return to your hotel after leaving the the hospital? Or what about our nine year old beautiful Oscar nominee who was referred to as a Douchebag as well? Or what about being a young woman in her early twenties, exploring the intricacies of love and power on the world stage? And should we shame a young woman for displaying a sense of innocence as she navigates through the murky waters of love, heartbreak, and fame? Are these young people not allowed to be young, make mistakes, grow, and eventually transform a million times before our eyes? Are we asking them to defy the laws of nature because of who they are? Why can’t we congratulate them for the capacity to work through their challenges on a world stage and still deliver products that keep them on top.
We all know how hard it is to keep our head above water, even in the privacy of our own homes let alone on the world stage. Imagine yourself, at their age, with the spotlights, challenges and responsibilities. Most of us would have fallen to the waste side before we could even get to a crashed Ferrari, a controversial romance, several heart breaks, or an Oscar nomination at NINE. We WISH we could have had the capacity to accomplish HALF of what they have accomplished along with ALL these challenges they face. But…maybe THAT’S the problem…we WISH we could have or even…we WISH we could.
I don’t know if I would put Rihanna in the same boat as a young actress like Quvenzhané, but I do get the point Jada is trying to make — though at some point I think we need to ask whether some of these stars have made their own beds long before the media got a hold of their rude boy behavior.
As a general rule though, name calling is never an appropriate exchange among anyone personally or professionally, particularly when there is a marked age difference between the parties, but someone needs to take it upon themselves to educate these young artists on the type of consequences that come along with acting out under such a huge spotlight. The blame can be equally split between these two parties.
What do you think about what Jada wrote?
Zooey Deschanel, Lindsay Lohan, Bruce Willis and Scarlett Johansson… want to know what they all have in common? They all attempted that rocky transition from actor to singer, some conquering this territory with success, but many failing spectacularly. The urge for actors to test their talents in other realms is an understandable one. It makes sense that if you’re celebrated for talents in one area, you surmise that you have what it takes to flourish in other arenas. The aforementioned actors are just a shortlist of individuals who’ve attempted the crossover, read on to find out which African American singers have dabbled into singing.
Howard’s performance as an actor and rapper in the acclaimed film Hustle & Flow earned him an Academy Award nomination and recognition for his…well, flow. He followed the film with the release of his first studio album, Shine Through It –which presents music that is far different than what’s featured in the film. Most often described as experimental, the album features soft-rock, R&B and soul sounds.
‘Blended Families Are Never Easy:’ Jada Pinkett-Smith Offers Advice On Accepting A Man’s Children In Open Letter
Back when Jada and Will Smith tied the knot, she realized that not only was she gaining a husband, but also a son, whom she would have to love and cherish as if he were her own. She recognized that with that child, came his mother, Will’s ex-wife, Sheree Fletcher and she knew that for the benefit of everyone in that family, she would have to form a decent relationship with Sheree. The actress posted a tough love, open letter to her Facebook page, addressing that very subject. She doesn’t exactly say who the letter is intended for, but it seems that anyone going through a similar experience can benefit from it. Check out the letter below.
“A Letter to a Friend:
Blended families are NEVER easy, but here’s why I don’t have a lot of sympathy for your situation because… we CHOOSE them. When I married Will, I knew Trey was part of the package…Period! If I didn’t want that…I needed to marry someone else. Then I learned if I am going to love Trey…I had to learn to love the most important person in the world to him…his mother. And the two of us may not have always LIKED each other… but we have learned to LOVE each other.
I can’t support any actions that keep a man from his children of a previous marriage. These are the situations that separate the women from the girls. Your behavior is that of an insecure child who needs to recognize her own weaknesses that MUST be strengthened to take on the task at hand. We can’t say we love our man and then come in between him and his children. THAT’S selfishness…NOT love. WOMAN UP… I’ve been there…I know. My blended family made me a giant… Taught me so much about love, commitment and it has been the biggest ego death to date. It’s time you let your blended family make you the giant you truly are.”
Jada is kicking major knowledge.
What do you think of her letter?
Jazmine Denise is a news writer for Madame Noire. Follow her on Twitter @jazminedenise.
Most would say that being in business with your romantic partner is a little too close for comfort. But there are some people who make it work.
Black Enterprise has rounded up five iconic black couples who have perfected a relationship dynamic that brings together love and business. Of our featured couple above, Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith, the article says, “Maintaining one of the most talented households in the world cannot be an easy task, nevertheless, both Will and Jada maintain balance. Their advice for keeping a healthy relationship? A marriage business plan.”
To read about all the highlighted couples, click through to BlackEnterprise.com.
Just in time for Black History Month, Codeblack Films, a Lionsgate company, has announced that it is releasing Free Angela and All Political Prisoners, presented by BET Networks at select AMC locations in Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Washington D.C., Oakland, Philadelphia and Atlanta on April 5, 2013.
This documentary of Angela Davis was directed and written by Shola Lynch, whose previous work includes Chisholm ’72- Unbought & Unbossed. According to a press release for this film, Davis was inspired by Chisholm ’72 to “speak to young people in the 21st century and to give them a sense of what it means to feel collectively powerful and capable of changing the world.”
Jada Pinkett Smith also worked on Free Angela as an executive producer, with Overbrook Entertainment and Jay Z for Roc Nation and a number of other names in the entertainment industry. The film was a hit at the Toronto Film Festival a few months ago.
Angela Davis has been hailed as a political symbol and prominent activist in the 1960s for her involvement in the Civil Rights movement and affiliation with the Black Panthers. This film features Angela Davis’ own personal account of what led to her imprisonment. The story focuses on Davis as a young professor and social justice activist who is somehow implicated in a kidnapping attempt and a shootout that leaves four people dead. Davis ultimately lands on the FBI’s 10 most wanted list. She also became a global cause, with people around the world calling her a “political prisoner” and demanding her release. The documentary coincides with the 40th anniversary of Davis’ acquittal on charges of murder, kidnapping, and conspiracy.
Fun fact: Davis became such a celebrated cause that she was the inspiration for a song by John Lennon and Yoko Ono — “Angela” — and another by The Rolling Stones — “Sweet Black Angel.” IMDB also reminds us that Davis ran for VP of the US in 1980 and 1984 under the Communist Party umbrella.
After the jump, we’ve got the trailer. Will you watch this movie?
Why You Wanna Go And Do That Love, Huh? 10 Cute Celebs Who Didn’t Need The Plastic Surgery Or Enhancements
Let’s be clear, there are only like two or three people on this list who you could say look “bad” after delving into the world of plastic surgery. And while some might look okay with their enhancements and changes, if you ask us, they looked perfectly fine, if not fabulous, before they decided to mess with the knife, Botox and other things that changed their features dramatically. Sometimes it’s just good to work with what God gave you, even if you have the money to morph yourself.
It’s clear almost every woman in the Braxton clan has had a little somethin’ somethin’ done, but aside from Tamar, every other sister kind of knew when to quit. She doesn’t look bad per se (though some, like K. Michelle for instance, like to say she looks like a Muppet), but baby girl didn’t need the cheekbone changes and other work. And all the make up that her make up artist piles on, along with the big lacefronts, don’t do her true beauty justice.