Let me just cut to the chase. This whole thing with the hypercriticism and analysis of black women has gotten really tired…on both sides. If you read blogs or frequent social media and don’t live under granite stones, you already know about the Psychology Today article that set the Black internets ablaze. I’m really starting to think we enjoy being united in outrage and anguish.
The cyclical scrutiny doesn’t really activate any emotion for me anymore. I’ve read the articles on why white women are winning and black women aren’t. I’ve read about the “unique” singledom that plagues those with a womb. I’ve seen the billboards and I’ve watched the commercials. Seriously, I’ve seen it all and have become desensitized.
Someone tried to explain to me that the reason I don’t see this stuff as a big deal is because I’m a Black man and not a Black woman. They also tried to explain how these public references to inferiority are impacting the community and making both men and women question themselves and each other. I mean…I get it. But let’s not act like Black men haven’t caught their fair share of scrutiny.
We have the Tyler Perry depictions, the Black in America specials, the constant reference to crime statistics and the mug shots that are all too familiar on the news. Black men have been called out repeatedly for their absence as father figures and role models. I’m sure there have been “scientific studies,” but I either didn’t pay much attention or I just filtered it out as white noise in the minutiae of every day life. Ain’t nothing new about this. However, there are a few things about the reactions to these regular attempts to put chinks in our pride and hold us down. So to keep my word count respectable, I’ve put together a brief list that sums up my thoughts on all this foolery.
It’s ridiculous how difficult it is to get a large number of Black people to take action or engage in serious discussions about important issues. In the most recent case, why did it take an Asian dude to get us to come together?
I guess the obvious answer is that adversity unites people. My whole thing with this (which more than likely will fall on deaf ears and inactive masses) is that much more could and would be accomplished if we were proactive in our efforts instead of angry and reactive. No, I’m not sayin’ all Black women are angry, but it seems like people gotta be all up in their emotions to respond to something that should have mattered before an article was published. The question for me is how do we get Black folks to care this much daily? Correction, how do we get more Black folks to care this much on an everyday basis?
A good number of social media folks aren’t as upset about these articles as they let on.
People are self-interested and strategic. What better time to rally the masses to follow them or retweet their monumental messages or reassurances of the beauty of black women than after a controversial article hit the e-waves. I know what pandering looks like and I saw a lot of it on Monday and Tuesday. How do I know there was pandering? I’m an ambitious blogger that keeps an ear to the social media streets. I’ve done it before and had success with it, but I’ve come to realize that I don’t enjoy the taste of bullsh*t. If I don’t feel passionately about something, I don’t try to figure out which post or tweet will drive the most traffic to my site or the most followers to my username. Some of these dudes out there never have a positive thing to say about Black women until they can capitalize on the opportunity.
We should be holding ourselves accountable instead of blaming the media.
Yeah, some of these articles and media displays may taint the views of the “greater majority” in terms of their perception of Black people. These events may even make some Black women and women question themselves and each other. The thing is these folks were already leaning in the direction of whatever it is they ended up accepting as truth. A public outburst in response isn’t going to swing the momentum in the other direction, regardless of if our outrage gets the articles and commercials pulled. So basically, it’d be more productive to anticipate and flood the scene with positivity before something comes out rather than wait and react. We all know by now that another article is on the way in a few weeks time. What’s the sense in waiting around for it to hit like a predictable storm?
Of course it’ll take something much bigger than a blog post here to motivate people. I don’t know exactly what that thing is. All I can do is hope that people realize that they don’t have to be stuck in the Twilight Zone of scrutiny if they don’t want to. So in the mean time, I’m gonna keep living my life like nothing was said and in anticipation of what’s to come next. These articles and studies will never be a surprise to me. They shouldn’t be to you either. Just keep it moving and keep bettering yourself and those around you. It’s kinda simple.
Drafting a report on why Asian men resort to writing ho-hum pieces resembling their own,