Dear weird black child (BEDA 29)

Dear weird black child,

There is nothing wrong with you. Do NOT let your blackness be defined by someone else. You do not belong in the box that other people, including OUR people, want to put you in to. There is nothing wrong with who you are. I have been there. I was that weird black kid and I turned into a weird black woman. I am proud of that.

I didn’t dress like everyone else. I wasn’t, and I am still not, label conscious. I didn’t really listen to rap music. I was super into anime (still into it now). I read manga. I was an undercover gamer. I was that weird black kid. I was made fun of. I was told that I “talk white”. I was told I wasn’t “black enough”. I was told I was weird. It took time but I embraced it. I am who I am and that is good enough for me.

You are who you are. Your blackness is in no way related to the things you enjoy. It’s ok for you to be more excited about the Looney Tunes Vans than the Yeezy season 2’s. It’s fine that you would rather watch soccer than basketball. Go ahead and participate in cosplay, you look GREAT! Sing along completely incorrectly to that Korean pop song, I’m in my car singing along too. You don’t know any of the rappers out right now? That’s ok, neither do I. You’re standing in line for a new game? Have fun and play hard! You know more about anime than reality television, you’re not alone (in fact most of the people I know don’t watch reality shows). There is absolutely nothing wrong you. There is nothing lacking about your “blackness”. You are who you are and you have no reason to be ashamed. Do not let others change how you feel about you. Be weird. Be true to who you are. You are not obligated to meet anyone else’s ideas of “how to be black”. There is no manual. There are no “blackness guidelines”. Your black does not have to match anyone else’s black. You are who you are meant to be.

Black people and health (BEDA 17)

Why do we, as black people, ignore our health so much? We have the highest rates of diabetes and some of the highest rates of heart disease, but so many of us do nothing. Diabetes is just reduced to “tha sugars” and eat whatever we want. Hypertension is just “high blood pressure” and we do very little about it. Both of these are killing us but we are acting as if our collective health problems don’t exist.

Let’s change the narrative. Let’s learn what diabetes is, how it affects the entire body, how we can keep it under control. Let’s understand the causes of hypertension and what we can do to fix it. Let’s understand what medications are being prescribed and what those medications are supposed to treat. Let’s start caring about our health. Let’s extend our lives, not end them. Okay?

Dear black hair salons:

Dear black hair salon owners,

I am a paying customer that would like to talk to you. This is your business, your lively hood. I understand that. However, your business depends on me. I am sure you know that already but somewhere things have gone wrong. From this point, I’m going to be a bit gripe-y, just hear me out.

Why does it take 4 hours for a wash and haircut? Why am I in the salon almost 6 hours for a wash and style? It’s so frustrating. You have double booked yourself. I am now waiting on you to finish washing/blow drying/ wrapping someone else’s hair even though I made an appointment and I am on time. I can’t just get up and leave because you have already washed my hair and it’s still wet. I am now sitting for 20-30 mins waiting on you to get back to my hair. I can understand starting something while I am under the dryer, my hair takes forever to dry anyway. That makes sense, multitasking is a good thing. I also understand that you want to service as many customers as possible. Don’t you think you could service more people if you just got us in and out? I know that at one time the salon was the place for the ladies to hang out and swap stories. Ladies would happily spend all day at the salon. Not anymore. I have things to do and I would like to get out before the sun goes down. I am not anti-social by any means but I have a life.

Since we are on the topic of customer service may I ask when it become ok to let random people walk in, harassing customers, trying to get them to buy bootleg DVD’s and other assorted, and probably stolen items? And yes, I have had this happen at several salons. I can respect a hustle but BRUH, I just want to get my hair done!

Also, can we stop acting like my natural hair is the hardest thing you are going to have to do today? Yes, it is thick. In fact, my hair is comb breaking thick. However, if you are as talented a stylist as you claim to be, you should understand how to handle these coils. If you don’t quite know how to handle my hair, ask me.  You know damn well you are not going to be able to detangle my hair with that small toothed comb. No, I don’t want a relaxer. No I don’t want to have some new “safe” straightening process involving a million chemicals done to my hair. I am good with it being natural, thank you.

Now this open letter does not apply to all black salons. In fact, I am happy with the salon I currently use- everyone in there can handle my natural hair. It just seems like customer service in some salons has gone out of the window. If you ask why I specifically address black salons, it’s because I am a black woman and it’s where I go to get my hair done. It’s  where I have the most experience. The fact is this, if I am going to pay for a service then give me good service. That’s it. That’s all. Nothing big. Nothing special. All I want is for you to keep your customers in mind.

 

 

House slave

My take on the “Sterling incident”:

If you think he was the only one in the NBA that looks at the black man as a commodity and not a human being then you are sadly mistaken. He was simply too vocal about his disdain for you around the wrong person. You, my black man, have always been a paycheck to them… To the “owners”. You were never an equal, you were a business investment. Maybe it’s time for our men to stop looking at sports and rap as the only methods of social mobility. This man does not effect me.
My deepest contempt is reserved for that woman, and I use the term lightly. You stick by a man that condemns part of your bloodline. You obey a man that hates half of you. You are a house wench for a man that would probably hang half your family if given the chance… You do this willingly. You are my problem. You are the field negro telling “masta” the escape plans. You are the true disgrace. You are my real enemy. You are more than willing to sell me to the highest bidder. You make my blood boil. People like you are spread within my culture and you all are killing us. You aren’t a victim. I have NO sympathy for you. All respect for you is lost. Now go find a new master to parade around for…

Not black enough

Browsing my Facebook timeline and saw a picture that read “dark skinned women are beautiful.” I immediately thought to myself, “this is true”. I decided I wanted to read the comments to see the positivity being spoken. It looks as if a lighter skinned woman asked why separate us and why not say all black skin is beautiful? Apparently this became an opportunity to discuss how light skinned women “don’t understand” the hardships of being a “black woman”. Oh, so I don’t know what it’s like to be black? I have never experienced racism? I have never been insulted, excluded, or disrespected for the color of my skin? Let me answer that question for you, I HAVE. When a racist sees me, he or she does not hate me less because I am a lighter version of the color they hate. I have been pulled for driving a car “too nice” for me to have. I have had white women grab their purse in an elevator because they expect me to rob them. I have been followed around in stores because they just KNOW I am going to steal something, anything. I have been called “nigger”. I know what that feels like so HOW DARE YOU diminish what I have gone through because of my light skin? HOW DARE YOU question my African blood line because of my light skin? HOW DARE YOU try to make me feel guilty for being proud of the skin the ALMIGHTY GOD himself saw fit to give me?

But to be honest, it is not the racism of whites that hurts me. It is the racism of blacks that bothers me, deeply. How many dark skinned people participated in that “light skinned niggas/bitches be like” foolishness on Twitter and Instagram? How many pictures were posted of the stereotypes associated with my skin? How many of you ignorant sons of bitches believe that crap? TOO MANY! I have had black men say they don’t talk to light skinned women because they are too “stuck up”. If you took the time to get to know me, you would know I am one of the most down to Earth people you could ever meet. I have had black men and women accuse me of wanting to be white. No, I’m simply educated and refuse to listen to music that degrades my sisters. People still believe I am chosen to do this or that or I have achieved this or that because I am light skinned. Actually, everything I have I busted my ass for and I am still grinding for more.

Do not misunderstand me. I know that dark skinned people experience hardships in life and love. Look at Hollywood. The “hero” in the urban movies is some light skinned dude or woman who swooped in to save the main character from the wrath of the dark skinned character. There are blacks that still talk about not wanting a dark skinned man or woman because the “babies will be too dark”. It has been proven that dark skinned individuals experience more racism in the work place. I know. I know that you struggle and you struggle hard. I acknowledge your struggles, I do not diminish them! I support you and your fight. Yet it seems you cannot support me. I am not deserving of my black people’s respect because my skin is too light. I am tired of my soul being insulted by my own. I am tired of being made to feel guilty for being a light skinned woman. I am tired of being called a bitch if I stand up for myself and exhibit pride in my skin. I am tired of being told I don’t know what it’s like. I am tired of my struggles being diminished. I am tired of my black people being the most racist people. I am a PROUD black woman. I am a PROUD light skinned woman. Everything I have achieved I fought for and DESERVE. I will NO LONGER feel guilty for my shade of blackness. I am what I am. I am who I am. I am all the God has intended for me to be. If that bothers you then take it up with the Almighty. Tell Him he made a mistake. Tell Him he didn’t create me with the right skin. Or we can stop the segregation. We can stop the self hate. We can band together and build ourselves up to the Kings and Queens we used to be. But then again, that would be the easy way wouldn’t it? Then you would have no reason to blame your self hatred on me, would you? Keep your hatred, I have shit to do.

Racism isn’t dead, it’s hiding in the corners…

This recent election has made it more apparent than ever that racism is still very prevalent. Apparently black people voted for a black president because he is black and he will let us keep welfare. Really now? Actually I voted for him because he stood by my rights as a woman. Republicans have this archaic idea that the man still needs to be in charge of everything, including a woman’s body. I am sorry but I don’t agree with that. That is only one of the reasons I voted for Obama. My choice had nothing to do with welfare. I’m not on welfare, I have not been for my entire adult life. I grew up on it as a child of a single mother of four children. She struggled, fought, and did all she could to get off of it. Somehow, though, the idea is that every black person is on welfare, uneducated, lazy, and standing there waiting for a hand out. I’ll give it to you, television would have you believe just that. It is not the truth, not in the least little bit. Just for you ignorant bastards that seem to have this preconceived notion of the United States, there are more white people on welfare than black. Sorry I have to be the one to drop that bomb on you. More single white women voted for Obama than Romney and that’s actually who helped get him elected. Sorry again there. It’s not 1950’s-60’s Mayberry. You may have forgotten but the 50’s and 60’s wasn’t such a great time for my people, so you’ll have to excuse us for not being as excited as you are to go back to that era. Get over it! The USA, in fact, the world is changing and it is time to change with it. Oh but it doesn’t stop there. No, you want that nigger out of the “White” House! Let me put a bug in your ear- that “White” House was built on the backs of Black slaves and that Black man has every damn right to be in that house! Oh, and lets not forget the land that the “White” House was built on was stolen from the hands of the “Red” men that was here way before your sorry ass was! You don’t want to accept the fact that the job of the presidency is no longer an old, rich, white man’s job. You are terrified of the fact that you are losing your self imposed place at the top of the chain. You are so baffled by the fact that the rest of us are learning to live together and work together. You are terrified of the fact that the minority may soon be the majority. You fear, and rightfully so, that your empire will be toppled over by those that you have oppressed for so long. We the people are realizing the we are, indeed, the people. The world that you know and love no longer exists. Your ignorance and hatred no longer penetrates as far as it used to. Your ridiculous stereotypes of my people are no longer the accepted truth. My black women are standing up and realizing we are the descendants of Queens. My black men are proudly displaying their lineage from Kings. We are proud of what and who we are. We have not forgotten the men stolen from their families. We have not forgotten how you raped our women and our land. We have not forgotten how you refused to let out children learn to read or write. We are doing what you and you thought we could never do. We are realizing how much power we really have… and we are coming for you. 

This post is offensive and it is meant to be so. Racism, itself is offensive. If I have to listen to you spout your hatred and ignorance, then you will listen to me respond. If you are offended then you are probably one of the very people I am talking to and I offer NOT ONE apology.