Ayesha Curry’s tweets on Saturday night created quite the whirlwind in responses clear into and through the weekend. At best, her comments about fashion trends and modesty shed a little more light on the basketball wife’s preferences and values, at worst, she unknowingly gave a pass to tweeters all over the country to release the beast of patriarchy.
Her tweets were polarizing (whether you agree with her stance on style or not). While some agree with her statements and see nothing wrong with discussing our thoughts and feelings on social media (because isn’t that what social media is for?), there were others who took her words extremely personally and attacked her for “throwing shade” and “shaming” women who may not hold the same ideals.
That’s to be expected. If at any point a less-than-popular opinion that goes against the grain of popular culture is shamelessly revealed, the mainstream will go for the jugular. It’s just the way it is. It is the easy thing to do – to take things that are extremely general and twist them into a personal attack on all those who see things differently.
What perhaps was not expected was that what seemed like a simple preferential tweet brought out the patriarchal a-holes who took Curry’s tweets as a license to go all open season on women who dress less than modestly. A firestorm of degrading and berating women (mostly Black women), calling them everything but a child of God ensued. A firestorm Curry never intended to ignite. Her response, once she realized what was happening, reflected as much. However, there is only so much damage control you can do when Twitter decides to be Twitter.
One tweeter went so far as to tweet photographs of Ayesha Curry in short dresses, reaching for the “point” that Curry dresses herself immodestly at times. And if you have seen the photos, it was indeed a reach.
Ayesha Curry was bombarded with the out-of-bounds tweets and responded, “Regardless of if you like my “style of clothes” or not (which I do not care) please do not tear women down and degrade them… not cool peeps”
The eagerness with which so many took Curry’s thoughts as a pass to to viciously attack Black women’s character, morals, values, and sexuality is troubling. What is even more sad is that a number of those who were degrading women WERE women.
What came from a personal place, a simple observation, was co-signed in bigotry, self-hatred, and denigration of others that was never meant to be showcased.
Ayesha Curry unknowingly pulled the lid off of the deep-seated, ready-to-jump patriarchal ideals that still plague the Black community, causing us to viciously attack one another. She unknowingly uncovered the desire to shame and ostracize Black women who do not fall into the very specific box that has been built for us. She brought our attention to ourselves and the ways in which Black womanhood falls within a spectrum that should be examined and appreciated through a new lens for what it is without shame.
Ashley J. H. is all about creating space for Black women’s visibility and magic to shine. Follow her on Twitter: @ashleylatruly