Black Men are Crazy
Black sisterhood is at an all-time low in 2016. Online and offline, I see black women tearing each other to pieces like rabid dogs over the most mundane and pettiest of shit. If you don’t measure up their lofty standards, there is a segment of black women that will shame your ass to hell. They will shame you for wanting a child without being married because unmarried black mothers make them look bad. They will shame you for not wanting to date outside your race because black women who only want to date black men and give birth to black children are hood rats. They will shame you for living in the hood (while not offering a dime in assistance or advice how to get out the hood), for being overweight (while being one cheeseburger from being considered fat themselves), and for not being “feminine” enough by their standards (although their standards of femininity is based on white folks standards of femininity and living by white standards is very important). It is pathetic but the shaming of black women by other black women went to a new level with the public shaming of Patrice Brown otherwise known as #teacherbae.
Ms. Brown is a paraprofessional who works for the Atlantic Public School system whose pictures of herself on Instagram turned her into an overnight sensation and an object of ridicule. She was ridiculed because of her attire, which was thought to be too sexy to be around the 4th grade students she taught on a daily basis. Although all the dresses that were shown were of knee length, long sleeved and covered her to the neck, because she is a voluptuous woman, it became a problem for many people, mainly black women. All this controversy about her clothing style caused the APS to publicly reprimand this woman for the very clothes they knew she wore five days a week.
This young woman could have been fired because of the jealousy and insecurity of masses of black women who will never meet or have any interaction with her and it makes no sense at all but unfortunately, too many black women do not like to see other black women shine. Living under a system of patriarchy has conditioned them to be very competitive with other women and anytime a black woman receives so much as a crumb of attention that in anyway involves the male gaze, these women come with claws extended with knives.
I call this mentality The Winter Santiago Complex. Remember Winter Santiago from the novel The Coldest Winter Ever by Sister Souljah? She was truly one of the most selfish female characters written in the history of literature and she has become the standard for female characters in the urban literature genre. One particular scene from the novel will always stand out in my head. It was the time right after her father had went to jail and her family was back living in the projects. She went to a concert I think and she saw her best friend Natalie in a pink Chanel suit and lost her damn mind. Natalie went off her and told her, quite truthfully, “Nobody can’t have shit but you!”
And there lies the problem with so many black women. Another black woman cannot have shit without them feeling slighted. She can’t be pretty with a little waist you can span with one hand, big hips and upright breasts. She cannot be an educated sister with the body of a goddess and a face to match. You have to be fat, frumpy, and willing to watch their children when they go out because you know fat bitches don’t have a life. You have to be an ugly, uneducated hood-rat that they can feel both feel sorry for and contemptuous of. Because black chicks with The Winter Santiago Complex cannot take competition and need their feet on the necks of black women they deem undesirable. Pitiful.
And Ms. Patrice? You are a bright, beautiful young woman who is out here these trenches teaching black children and for that, I salute you. And if you were my daughter, I would have been on the social media tearing ignorant folks a new asshole for messing with my baby. Shine boo, shine!
First of all, before I write this essay, I would like to state that I love being a black woman. I love the beautiful brownness of my skin, my hair which is a crown that has anointed me Queen of my universe, my full lips, slanted eyes, and the strength of my ancestors who have dealt with much adversity during their journeys here in America and whose blood flow proudly in my veins. But I have to admit, I wonder what it would be like to be a white female just for a day to see what it would to be like to be considered Aphrodite rising from the sea because at times, it is hard being a black women in a society that is sexist and has placed women who look like me on the bottom rung of every ladder in American society from economics to beauty.
White privilege is a critical race theory I came across in college during an African American history class. I had to read an article entitled, White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh and it opened my mind to some concepts I had never thought about before. According to this article, white privilege can be defined as unearned advantages enjoyed by white people beyond those commonly experienced by people of color in the same social, political, and economic spaces (nation, community, workplace, income, etc.) just because they are white.
White privilege is a topic most whites do not want to talk about because in admitting they are privileged because of their skin color would mean admitting that racism still exists and is not a figment of black folks’ imaginations but I digress. It must be nice living in a world where almost every image of your kind is thought to be good and pure and I would like some of that privilege just for one day.
Just for once, it would be nice to go on a job interview and not have to worry about the texture of my hair and wonder if the person I am interviewing with has a problem with afros, two-strand twists, or any other “black ethnic” hairstyle I might be wearing that day. If I was a white woman, I could toss my silky, long hair around with no problems.
Just for once, it would be nice not to be labeled an angry, bitter, black female who is filled with hatred just because I happen to have an opinion different from the black man that I am debating with. If I was white woman, I could be as argumentative as I want and be told that I am merely feisty. Black men would swim through a river of snot for me and tell me that black women are just too combative to be considered “wifey” material and that is why 40% of African American women remain unmarried. As a white woman, I would be able to date freely and not be told by my peers to lower my expectations or else die a lonely and miserable spinster with five kids with five different fathers.
Just for once, it would be nice to see someone who looks like me on a regular basis on the covers of high fashion magazines and playing the role of the leading lady in movies and television shows. As a black woman, I am constantly scolded by the media and some of my people for being too dark, too nappy, and too fat and that I will never be placed on that anointed pedestal as the standard of beauty and loveliness for American society. If I was a white woman, this problem would be null and void because I would be considered the crème de la crème.
But alas, I am a black woman and that is nothing to shirk at. The strength and tenacity of black women who can make something literally out of nothing is something to be admired than scorned and I am proud to be one. I actually feel sorry for white women sitting upon that fabled pedestal because it is a lonely tour of duty filled with unrealistic and shallow expectations and most fall swiftly and hard from that same pedestal. Better to be me with all my flaws, real and imagined than to be the poster child of impossible beauty. But I can keep it real; sometimes I wonder what it would be like to be a white woman. In my world, black women are called everything but a child of God and for once, it would be nice to be the anointed one.