All Articles Tagged "racism"
By Abigail Henry
Eric Holder stated that in his version of “the talk,” which he hoped not to have to “[hand] down,” that “as a father who loves his son and who is more knowing in the ways of the world, I had to do this to protect my boy.”
“The talk” is often defined as the dinner-table conversation that takes place between Black parents and their sons and/or daughters. It is the heartfelt and protective advice given by parents on what to do when encountering a police officer.
While “the talk” traditionally occurs in the homes and neighborhoods of Black families, it also, unintentionally or intentionally, occurs within educational settings. As an African-American history teacher, my responsibility is to give a very long-winded version of “the talk.” My job, my responsibility and the reason why I strive to serve well, is to provide students with the ability to be problem solvers and give back to their own communities despite ongoing oppression.
However, all teachers—not just those that teach African-American history—have the responsibility and can and should be held accountable, regardless of what curriculum he or she teaches, to at some point have a “talk” with students of color. The challenge is that for many educators this talk is given without possessing the necessary cultural competency to have a conversation that makes students feel safe and supported.
I’ve seen teachers give their mini-version of the talk. Most redirections we provide to Black students about behavior are our personalized adaptations of “the talk.” Every time a teacher addresses a Black student in the hallway about their uniform or in the classroom about the curse-word they just yelled, the teacher is adding to the story of this racially concerned conversation.
My concern is that when teachers ask a Black student “why are you late?” or to “take those headphones out of your ears!” they are unconsciously “talk”-ing at the student, without the required racial competency to have the conversation. These discussions require racial sensitivity, patience and preparation.
As I prepare for a new class of students in a few weeks, here is what I will do, and what I advise every other teacher to do to support positive racial identity development in our students.
You don’t have to be an African-American history teacher or one of the rare “minority” teachers to have your own racial “talk” tool-kit. You too can participate successfully in the conversation and help further protect and empower our students.
5 TIPS ON “THE TALK” AND POSITIVE RACIAL IDENTITY GROWTH
•When re-directing Black students, provide the explanation. Our students might want to engage in some behaviors when we don’t want them to, and our students want to test the limits (a natural and healthy part of human growth and development). Explain to students the impact of their choices and the reasons why you are asking them to change their behavior. Students are more likely to cooperate when they have been “explained-to” not “talked-at.”
•Growth Mindset is a must. Every time I get frustrated with a student, I check myself on a student’s pre-determined oppression circumstances. It’s not about just them. It’s also about me, and a particular institutionalized microcosm at that moment, and whether or not I can remain positive enough to get past my own frustration. There’s always another solution, another conversation, another intervention, that may help you be more successful with the student.
•Develop a racial positive affirmation with your students that you say regularly. Cheesy I know, and yet in my classroom we say before each lesson, “I am my present, my past, my future.” You don’t have to teach African-American history to say those words or develop an affirmation that routinely brings students together and supports a positive racial identity.
•Stop blaming the family all the time. This one is huge! And is more about that “talk” you have with yourself or another co-worker. Often times, as teachers, we say “well, she didn’t even get her cell phone taken away,” or “Can you believe he got suspended 2 days ago, and showed up to school with a new pair of sneakers this morning!” Remember, our families, our communities, quite often face oppressive circumstances. Many are truly looking to us as educators for guidance, support and meaningful partnerships, and most of all, solidarity in this struggle.
•Beware of the elephant. Don’t avoid acknowledging your privilege. Recognize how you, as a teacher, have had advantages that your students did not. How are your students’ experiences different from your own in high school? What implicit bias do you have that is holding you back from truly having a “talk” with your students of value? Even as a Black teacher, I work on this one every day.
Ultimately, as educators, we do have the responsibility to participate in “the talk.” The question is: Are you doing so in a productive way that supports positive racial identity growth?
For Black students, “the talk” is a part of their education and if educators could also be co-parents in the “talk,” think how much further students of color would be uplifted.
Abigail Henry is a secondary African-American history teacher at Mastery Charter Schools in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
Last week, a White Wichita, Kansas, grandmother claimed someone sent her a racist letter in the mail, telling her Black people were not welcome in her neighborhood, KSNW reported.
See, Nancy Wirths has nine grandkids, six of whom are African-American, a fact her neighbors seem to have an issue with. So they sent her the following note:
“We have noticed there are some black children at your residence. Maybe you are running a daycare or these are your children. In either case, we have put our house for sale. This neighborhood does not need any blacks in it.”
The letter concluded by saying there’s a reason why people of color live “the other side of the tracks” and that is where these people belong, KSNW noted.
Read more about this incident at HelloBeautiful.com
Ellen DeGeneres Says A Racist “Is The Furthest Thing From Whom I Am” After Usain Bolt Meme Causes Backlash
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) August 15, 2016
On a scale of one to 10, one being not a big deal at all and 10 being offensive as all get out, just how discourteous is the above meme from Ellen DeGeneres?
That’s the latest Twitter debate (as there are always quite a few happening daily) after the talk show host and comedian attempted to use humor to praise Usain Bolt’s speed. The Olympian acquired his seventh gold medal by winning the 100m final earlier this week. And while it was meant to make people laugh, her image ended up rubbing quite a few people the wrong way:
— 777-9311 (@MiQL) August 15, 2016
— Fighting Jurist (@Br_mabe) August 16, 2016
@TheEllenShow You thought it’d be funny to post a pic of yourself riding on the back of a Black man? Nope. Delete this racist garbage.
— Mike (@MikeAllen_47) August 15, 2016
— Tony Sparks (@WarWizard) August 16, 2016
— Ⓐ #GrumpyCuntSec Ⓐ (@brazenqueer) August 16, 2016
Eventually, DeGeneres caught wind of the way her meme had been perceived. She didn’t apologize, but she did say — well, I”m not sure how to classify it. It was just a statement:
I am highly aware of the racism that exists in our country. It is the furthest thing from who I am.
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) August 16, 2016
Still, there are multiple ways to look at such imagery. And no, I don’t believe DeGeneres is racist or meant any harm by sharing that image, but she still offended people who had a good reason to feel some type of way. I’m not one of those people, but I get it. Just as people weren’t happy with Vogue when they put LeBron James on the cover with Gisele Bundchen and made him look like King Kong, a White woman riding on the back of a Black man can be looked at as more than just a joke about his stamina, but also, an image that makes him look like some form of chattel. And we all know that isn’t funny.
A simple apology to those repulsed by the tweet would have done wonders, but as we’ve talked about in the past, some people just don’t get the importance of such simple gestures. And comedians, if they apologize for one thing, will likely feel as though they will always be called upon to apologized for their jokes. But this isn’t the first time DeGeneres has landed in hot water for such quips. There was the poorly received depiction of a young Nicki Minaj with a big butt while trying to joke about the rapper’s upcoming TV series, as well as the time she flipped a woman’s name from Titi Pierce to “titty pierce” on her show. She’s being sued for the latter situation.
But still, I’m sure she felt there was no need to apologize for this particular situation based on the fact that Bolt (who has been a guest on her show) actually retweeted the meme on his Twitter page, finding it comical:
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) August 15, 2016
But is it?
Colorism, an anti-Black sentiment, and the fetishization of people with a bi or multi-racial identity is real. And while I wish these weren’t conversations we didn’t still need to have, we can’t begin to heal from this internalized racism until we call it out for what it really is.
A recent study, detailed in Vox, found that if Black people simply mentioned that are multiracial, more than Black, they were rated as more attractive. Some of these people weren’t actually multiracial. They simply said it.
Researcher Robert L. Reece, a doctoral candidate in sociology at Duke, told the Duke Research Blog that the results are partially explained because of the notion that “being exotic is a compelling idea.” He continued, “It’s also partially just racism, the notion that Black people are less attractive, so being partially not-Black makes you more attractive.”
Reece’s data came from 3,200 interviews of self-identified Black people as a part of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health. The interviewers were people of all different races. After the subjects answered a set of questions, including ones about their racial background, the interviewer was asked to rank their attractiveness on a scale of 1-5. The people who said they were multiracial got higher scores.
Reece found that these results weren’t even about just colorism. Even darker skinned Black people, who identified as multiracial, were ranked better looking than those with lighter skin who said they were just Black. The study controlled for age, gender, eye and hair color, pointing to simply the multiracial identification as the marker of perceived attractiveness.
Reece said, “Race is more than we think it is,” Reece told the Duke Research Blog. “It’s more than physical characteristics and ancestry and social class. The idea that you’re a certain race shapes how people view you.”
LeBron James Praises Simone Biles, Simone Manuel For Inspiring “Young Black Girls” And Old White Men Are Pissed
As someone once said, if having pride in yourself and your identity makes someone else feel threatened, that’s on them. And such a statement rings true when speaking of just how pressed some people get when Black people have pride in themselves or even when proclaiming that Black lives matter, only for non-Blacks to say something is reverse racism, or worse, that all lives matter. It’s pretty vexing to see, especially in moments when we’re celebrating the accomplishments of young Black women making historical strides in sports that have always been pretty sparse in terms of having people of color.
LeBron James took to social media this past Friday to commend Simone Biles and Simone Manuel for winning multiple gold medals in Rio and inspiring people, especially young Black girls, to dream outside the box.
And just like that, what was meant to be a heartwarming message was accused of being a means to divide Americans. And the White tears were shed:
“especially young black girls”? So had it been a white, Hispanic asian etc etc it wouldn’t have been as special? Stop singling out a specific race when a AMERICAN does something wonderful. These young ladies were fantastic. These young ladies represented AMERICANS. Period. Not african americans….AMERICANS.
The black community always complain about segregation, that different races gets divided into certain groups etc etc. Now look at your status and see what you just did 🙂?
You’re not exactly helping the cause by separating blacks from whites.
You very often hear “look beyond race etc etc” and I totally agree. But it doesnt make sense to complain about being exposed because of your skin color, and then based on exactly that (RACE <—–) isolate yourselves from everyone else.
Cheer for america, not for races..
They are inspiring to ALL young girls! What’s with the labeling!!! Why can’t we just be AMERICANS? I think ALL young girls have something to learn from these two AMERICANS!! If we keep segregating each other with labels, what hope will there be for true equality and fellowship! We as adults need to be an example to our next generation. If we refer to us all as AMERICANS which we are, and not a “color”, “religion”, or “race”, then the next generations will begin to see us all as AMERICANS, and not a country divided by titles!
Those who see color are the problem. Until we can look past that, we will always have discrimination. Now my white girls at home are equally inspired by Simone Biles as the next girl.
Guess they missed the part about him watching the games with his young Black daughter. But thankfully, enough people understood what James was trying to say and do with his post.
Here comes the mad white people, build a bridge and jump off of it. You were lynching us 50 yrs ago so yes this does mean ALOT to young African American women because they haven’t a chance to be represented on this stage.
He said this is inspiring to young black girls, because they can relate. He didn’t say this is only inspiring because they are young black girls. Not that it should matter, this culture has made it a long way in 50 years back to when they weren’t even allowed to compete for the US. He is not singling out black people. When someone wins a track race with a prosthetic leg and people post about how they are so inspiring to handicapped people everywhere none of you are on there saying “No they are inspiring to all Americans”
I think that it was awesome as well!!! So good to see Gold from our girls!!! And you are right, what an inspiration to other black girls that thought swimming was out of reach. Gabby broke that barrier for gymnatics and only a short 4 years later, Simone blows us away with a stellar performance!!
As Black people, it’s no longer our jobs to justify and explain our pride and support of our community to those who question it. If you have a problem with a Black man congratulating and sharing his elation about the impact of fellow Black female athletes, I suggest you go hit up google and educate yourself on the history of inequality in this country. But this man owes you no explanation and you are without a doubt ill equipped to engage in a conversation on this topic
That last comment may very well be my favorite. Representation is everything. Watching Dominique Dawes back in the day as she won gold with Team USA inspired the hell out of me, and I didn’t necessarily want to be a gymnast. I was just happy to see a Black face dominating on the main stage, letting me know that anything is possible and that hard work pays off. This is how it always is when you’ve gone through life watching Black folks be one of the few individuals of color in a commercial, a magazine, a competition, show or classroom filled with White people. And while many young people can be inspired and motivated by the success of all the Olympians, to pretend as though finding joy in seeing someone who looks like you and comes from similar circumstances, or rose from worse to make it is insulting is just exposing ignorance. While we all want to be seen as more than our skin, just as I know Biles and Manuel want to be known as more than “the Black gymnast” or “the Black swimmer,” being Black is a major part of our identity. It’s okay to see people as more than their color, but please, let’s not try and play crazy. Don’t erase it when it’s convenient, like when we’re winning gold, but point it out when there’s something negative to share. The jig is up.
And may I add, to see such a prominent Black man salute Black women in such a way is great to applaud, as Black unity is also something we need to see more of and celebrate.
I love Cam Newton. Lord knows I do. But I’ll drop my crush on him as fast as I did my crush on Ja Rule if he proves to be as disconnected to the realities of race in this country as he seemed in his recent GQ interview. A killer smile and a banging body can’t redeem fatuousness.
If you will recall, last football season, Newton was the subject of quite a bit of criticism. That criticism included a Tennessee mom scolding him for dancing (and dabbing) in the end zone, others saying his braggadocio in general is too much, and people calling him out for showing less than great sportsmanship after losing in the Super Bowl to the Denver Broncos earlier this year. Newton has even said that being an African-American quarterback is tough because people “haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to.”
However, the Carolina Panthers quarterback is now leaving people to scratch their heads after stating that all of that criticism isn’t about race. As he put it, “I don’t think of it like that.”
When asked by writer Zach Baron about his thoughts on the way he’s been painted in the media and by detractors, here’s how their exchange went during the interview:
GQ: Your now former teammate Josh Norman said last year, “I’m going to be precise when I say it: It’s hate.”
Cam Newton: “His response may be somebody else’s response, but that’s not how I feel.”
GQ: Do you feel like football fans are racist toward you?
Newton: “It’s not racism. Everybody’s entitled to their own opinion.”
GQ: So if it’s not that, what is it, do you think?
Newton: “I’ll let you be the judge. I don’t look at it like that. I look at it like some people have certain beliefs, and I have my own belief, and we can agree to disagree on certain things. But this is what makes sports so amazing, that we can start a discussion around a table, in the newspaper, in the magazines, that will get people’s attention. And that’s what sports does.”
GQ: In January, right before the Super Bowl, you said: “I’m an African-American quarterback that may scare a lot of people because they haven’t seen nothing that they can compare me to.”
Newton: “I don’t want this to be about race, because it’s not. It’s not. Like, we’re beyond that. As a nation.”
GQ: You really think so?
Newton: “Yeah. I mean, you bring it to people’s attention. But after that, that’s it.”
I get that Newton likely wants to avoid saying anything too controversial. People love to say that citing the role that race plays in the treatment of Black folks, in general, including the way you’re picked apart when you’re in the spotlight, is just playing the race card and being overly sensitive. But anybody with sense could read into a mother describing a quick touchdown dance as an intimidating moment of “chest puffs,” “pelvic thrusts,” “arrogant struts” and “‘in your face’ taunting” as an obvious statement filled with microaggressions. Don’t even get me started on Newton and his friends being labeled as “thugs” in an Instagram picture while vacationing, which was flat-out racist. The hate became so real that Newton responded to such ugly labels on the same social media platform (a response which has since been conveniently deleted from his account) by reminding his detractors that all of the men in the image are college educated and doing great things in the community.
So why is it now not about race, especially at a time when it’s very evident that race matters and when we need to acknowledge that it does most? I can’t call it. Could be endorsements, could be a desire to not want to rile up White folks or have to answer even more complicated questions. But there’s a plan behind why he’s playing coy now. Whatever it is, he should go back to the drawing board. Playing the “we’re past racism in this country” hand is probably the worst possible response to such important questions.
“I Don’t See My Country In The Same Way” Kaitlin Doubleday On Being The Only White Woman On “Empire”
Many of us know what it’s like to be a the lone Black person in their work environment. But what about the reverse situation? Well, that’s what it’s like for Kaitlin Doubleday, who plays Rhonda on “Empire.”
This year, racial tensions have been pretty high so the discussions about race are likely more than they would have been any other year. And Doubleday has been there to witness it. In an interview with TV Guide, she explained how working with a predominately Black cast has shifted her perspective.
“It’s really been eye opening. It’s a sad time for many reasons,” Doubleday said, mentioning something about Trump being the GOP presidential nominee. “I don’t see my country in the same way.”
Doubleday has been privy to many conversations saying, “I have been a fly on the wall, with people speaking as if I wasn’t there. It’s been interesting to be part of the conversation [about race and diversity] among black people.”
And while she has learned quite a bit, Doubleday said that this is not the first time she’s been placed in a predicament like this. She was the only white girl on her cheerleading squad as a freshman in high school.
“Because of the way I grew up, in L.A. public schools, I’m really comfortable around other cultures. I never paid much attention [to being the only white person], which is a naive white-privileged thing to say. But I never felt a divide.”
Then she speaks a little bit more about her background.
“I did grow up in a white privileged way; I didn’t think that many people were racist. I’m 31; I should have known that a long time ago. I just wanted to believe racism was just… drunk idiots in the middle of nowhere. What I’ve learned is that, on both sides, there is a ton of prejudice and assumptions about how the other side feels…I feel lucky that I get to be part of conversations that most white people wouldn’t get to hear. I’m proud Empire is paving the way for other shows — for black, Asian, Hispanic and people other than white getting cast; it’s unbelievable. I talk about it with my friends all the time: how lucky that I got the one white role on the biggest show on TV.”
One of these days, folks are gonna realize that the world — or the Twitterverse — is always watching. A lesson that we’re sure New York Life Insurance’s Corey Multer wishes he’d learned before he violently came for Black Lives Matter leader Shanelle Matthews on social media.
According to the Daily Dot, on Saturday Multer contacted Matthews, a complete stranger, through Facebook’s Direct Messenger function leaving the following horrific note: “You f*$king racist pig whore. The world would be a much better place if you jumped in front of a moving train. Die!”
Read the rest of this unbelievable story at HelloBeautiful.com
We’ve been following the story of the assault on Dylann Roof at the hands of Dwayne Stafford pretty closely. As you know, last week Stafford attacked Roof in the shower.
Now, in an interview with Black Collective, Stafford is speaking out about the motivation behind the assault. And also providing updates and even a bit of correction for the reason that he was behind bars in the first place.
Stafford, who was arrested on charges of third degree assault and battery has spent 571 days in jail without a trial.
Later, we reported that thousands were raised to cover Stafford’s bond. According to his attorney, Marvin Pendarvis, that is not true. Only $379 was applied to his bond. Since he’s been released, his attorney has found temporary housing for him but he is currently homeless.
And it’s not the first time, in the interview with Black Collective, Stafford said that his life has not been easy. He’s been in and out of foster care and recently lost his father. Stafford said that, up until a few months ago, he kept the newspaper clipping about Roof’s attack on the church.
He told the Black Collective, “Even though I’m not related to them, those nine people, that’s family. Because we live in the same state, we are one, regardless. That’s church people, people that’s worshipping God, I’m on the same path. That’s my brothers and sisters. Majority of those people were elders. My emotion…to think about it, is the same way I felt about my father dying, it’s just like damn…damn.”
“I was the first person to speak to the man when he got in there. So I was like I want to approach him and let him see like, ‘Okay, what was you not getting for you to understand the fact that what you did is not understandable. I still don’t understand. So I basically approached him in a way like, ‘What’s going on with you man? Like, you couldn’t find nothing else better to do?’ It wasn’t hard. It was more peaceful. Usually when I give him the talk about his charges, he try to make me think that he feels real bad. I kind of felt as if ‘okay, this m*therf*cker think I’m stupid.’ He used to blame it on other people. He say he wrong but he says it wasn’t his idea. He doesn’t want to tell me who he’s associated with but he’s involved with other people. I don’t know who they are or what they represent.”
So how did their talks go from conversation to assault. Well, one day, shortly after Stafford was requesting that his father’s obituary be sent to the prison, he asked Roof if his intention really was to start a race war. Roof said, ‘Man, f*ck that sh*t. And f*ck your daddy too.”
Stafford had been really depressed about his father’s passing and the comments just made a bad situation worse. After that conversation with Roof he was crying in front of the mental health professionals. He didn’t let Roof see his tears but he was going to show him.
“I said I’ma get to him on my daddy’s grave, a grave I haven’t even saw yet.”
“I can’t say he deserve to die because I’m not a judge but I got the power to bust his ass.”
Also, if you would like to contribute to Stafford finding a home, you can contribute to the Crowd Rise fund in his honor.
You can watch Stafford’s full interview here.
Veronica Wells is the culture editor for MadameNoire.com. She is also the author of the recently released book “Bettah Days.”
Earlier this week, I saw the sign that a group of Black women painted a message to Black men.
Dear Black Men,* [Cisgender and Straight]
-While you’re busy Not fighting for us, Remember that You’re killing us too!
The hung this portion of it from an overpass on a highway. But there was more.
For Korryn Gaines.
For Skye Mockabee.
For Joyce Quaweay.
For Dee Whigham.
For all Black women and femmes.”
We hung this over the highway today to remind Black cisgender-straight men of the truth. You don’t shut shit down for us when we’re murdered by the police, by this system, or by our community. While you spend all this time justifying our deaths, don’t forget that you’re on the list of things we fear the most. The biggest threat to black women and femmes safety is not just white and non-Black people, it’s you.
We are the revolution. And you can’t silence us anymore.
This is just the beginning. This will no longer be a conversation we “keep in the house” because you can’t be trusted to hear us, protect us, humanize us, or love us. We’re dedicated to airing out all of our intra-community violence laundry until shit changes. Fuck white people hearing our problems, this isn’t about their voyeurism! This about our lives and our safety!
We ain’t fighting for y’all no more until you stop killing us and until you start centering the violence, trauma, and pain we suffer by antiblack misogynistic violence. This is a new Black future.
Shackelford wrote this letter after she noticed the lack of response from Black men during the recent killing of mother Korryn Gaines. As you know, Gaines was killed in her home during a standoff with police. Her son was somewhere in the home with her when the shooting took place and was wounded. Many dismissed Gaines as crazy or deserving of her death, even though it was a few ticket violations that led the police to her house in the first place.
Perhaps, Shackelford wasn’t just speaking about Black men as a group, perhaps she was even addressing the Black man who was in Gaines’ home when the police initially showed up. He fled the scene with her youngest child.
We don’t have to discuss the truth behind Shackelford’s words. I’ve seen and heard of countless marches dedicated to the Black men who have been killed at the hands of police. They’re widely publicized, the talking heads come out. The hashtag pops. And Black men defend the victim publicly and privately. But Korryn didn’t get that same treatment. Rekia didn’t get that same treatment. And even marches for Sandra Bland, perhaps the most well-known and well publicized death of a Black woman at the hands of police, had poor turnout.
Furthermore, when Black women try to present an issue that directly affects us in our daily lives, often at the hands of Black men, i.e. domestic violence, rape and sexual assault, we are demonized and dismissed. Much the same way the media and racists dismiss the victims of police brutality.
Like I said, I saw this story yesterday and I nodded my head. “Yup, true.” But I didn’t think to write about it until I saw it posted on a male Facebook friend’s wall.
Along with the picture, he included this caption:
“I agree with the message but the timing is bad. It wasn’t black boys matter it’s black lives matter. This is going to cause a divide during a time we need to be united. Deja Vu all over again.”
His caption immediately brought to mind Martin Luther King Jr.’s response in the Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963. If you’ll remember it was Dr. King’s peers, members of the clergy like himself who called his efforts and marches, his movement and purpose “unwise and untimely.” You’ll remember that he said the word “wait” almost always meant “never.”
And the same is true for Black women.
The relationship between America and Black folk and the relationship between Black men and Black women are strikingly similar. In the same way that Black folks birthed the American economy and built the nation, Black women have birthed and built up Black men. And the same ways in which Black folk have been seen as less than in the eyes of America; we, Black women, are seen as second class and inferior by our own people. In the same ways that Black people are questioned and even accused of being racist for expressing pride in our identity and calling for equal rights, is the same way Black women are accused of being anti-men and even anti-community for identifying themselves as feminists.
It’s preposterous to think that a group of people could be responsible for your success as a nation only to turn around and legally classify them as 3/5 human. And it’s absurd to think that the same women who have been fighting on the frontlines for Black men, from Ida B. Wells to Fannie Lou Hamer to Alicia Garza, Opal Tometi and Patrisse Cullors, would be dismissed and told to wait for a resolution to the issues that matter to us.
How dare the people who are responsible for America’s economy, infrastructure and innovation be told to wait? How dare the very demographic who formed the movement that is fighting for Black men, be told to wait by those same Black men? It’s a slap in the face to both the public and private sacrifices Black women have made and continue to make for Black men.
And the same is true for the LGBT community. The women who founded Black Lives Matter are queer. DeRay McKesson, one of the most visible faces of the movement is openly gay. And while he has literally sacrificed his time, money and even freedom for the cause of Black Lives, straight, Black men who haven’t even done an eighth as much can’t appreciate his efforts because he’s gay. And as much as some people like to act like being gay is some type of new fad, Bayard Rustin, James Baldwin and Langston Hughes, most likely, were all gay and some of the strongest advocates for our people.
It’s unbelievable. And Black women are tired of it. In the same ways people have asked America where it would be without Black folk, Black men need to ask themselves where they would be without Black women and the LGBTQ community.
Veronica Wells is the culture editor for MadameNoire.com. She is also the author of the recently released book “Bettah Days.”