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Sunday, April 23, 2017


Again, I don't know John Ridley's story. Further, I am not questioning anybody's ability to love outside their race. What I am questioning is the initial attraction.

continued from 

With Black Male Friends Like John Ridley, Who Needs Enemies? 

* * * * *

Before there is love, there is what you see on the outside of a person.

Black men with money, in sports and in Hollywood, are legendary for their collective decision to look for pale women. Even white people joke about how many black men are with light or white women.

When white people get in on the same racial jokes that black folks tell one another in private, you know there's an actual problem. Michael Jackson was three shades lighter than a paper bag before the average white person noticed he was getting lighter-skinned. If white people have noticed black men's dedication to getting themselves a Becky once they have some money in their pockets, there's a bona-fide problem

It's not necessarily black men's fault the internalized racism is digging at them in a deeper way. Unfortunately, society sends a clear message to young girls and women: A woman's worth is still based on beauty. And the beauty that's bombarding black people day in and day out is the white aesthetic, with the "white women are beautiful" message.

Of course, a black man named  G A Morgan (not Madam C J Walker) invented something to straighten the hair like a white woman. Of course black women --and black men too for a time-- ran to go get a relaxer for their hair so as to make themselves more "acceptable" to white society.  

Malcom X with a conk

Because a woman's worth is still connected to her "beauty" in this white supremacist patriarchal capitalistic society a lot of black women still feel like they must straighten their hair so as to look "professional" in the white eyes that judge them for hiring and promotion.  

When I decided to change jobs, the first thing I did was get a straight weave. I made sure I had some wigs with straight hair too.  

White women's straight hair is still held up as "normal" and professional -- even by black feminists like Shonda Rhimes. On the television show SCANDAL Olivia Pope's hair is only curly when she is running away from her life, on an island vacation, or a kidnap victim. When Pope is powerful, kicking ass and taking no names her hair is bone white-girl straight.
 Even with all this pressure on the black community toward the white aesthetic, using rates of intermarriage as a measuring stick, upwards of 85% black people find one another attractive. And that's been pretty consistent over the decades UNLESS you're talking about black men with millions of dollars.

However, any college-aged black girl can tell you that this 85% intermarriage rate does not speak to how very often a college-aged black boy is looking for someone light-skinned to date and marry. 

School Daze takes place on a black campus. But the colorism issues among black men
at much whiter Ivy League schools weren't much different

There have been studies done, according to an old professor of mine, that say that the trade between black men and white/light women is status for security (money). 
If that's true, then the famous black men that we in the black community tend to identify as "very pro-black" appear to be affected by wanting the white/light woman possession as status bump too.  

This pattern happening among highly visible, pro-black, black men is a problem for the black community because humans tend to mimic one another. Humans copy what other humans are doing a lot, across the board

Straightening hair is one example of this and fashion is another indication. Women even follow make-up trends. And men, in my opinion, like to mimic other men that are successful in almost every way.

This is because women aren't the only ones being held hostage in this white supremacist patriarchal capitalistic society. A man's worth is determined by how much money he has, how successful he is. And one of the status markers of a man's success is his beautiful wife. And in the white supremacist patriarchal capitalistic society beauty = whiteness.

And it appears that even the highly successful pro-black male will get a light woman even if they refuse to go out acquire a tropy-wife in the form of a white woman.

Again, this isn't a problem because of each highly-visibly black man's personal choice. This is a problem because of the pattern. And this is a pattern among highly visible black men; c
oincidences don't come in multiple six packs.  

And the pattern is a problem because human beings tend to copy one another.

Human beings in the form of 

black boys and black men 


successful, highly visible black men 

who have clearly communicated 

that getting yourself 

a light woman/white woman 

is a part of your success 

makes the pattern of highly visible

black men chasing white/light women

a black community problem

Some people will under-estimate how much they are being affected by the bombardment by white beauty aesthetic. A lot more people will under-estimate how much they themselves and their loved ones are influenced by other people and by what the black male one percent hold up as status symbols.
Many people will say they believe that an adult 
mimicking another adult is mindless or stupid or bad. These same people will say they won't allow their children to just copy what so-and-so is doing. But we humans will often communicate that mimicking another person is good using words we don't recognize as endorsing mimicking successful others.

For example:

Black men, including hoteps,

will tell you every single day

that a black boy cannot be

successfully raised by a single black mother 

because a black boy needs a black man

to look up to (a.k.a "mimic")

Personally, I don't believe this in the way it's usually presented.
I DO believe a child, boy or girl, needs a father. And I think a lot of girls without good fathers wind up getting damaged because they're seeking partners through trial and error with no standard of behavior to use as a basis of comparison. 
But I also believe a single black mother can raise a decent human being, male or female, when a good hypermasculinity-free male role model is present -- because I've seen it.
Let me say it again, I think boys and girls are hurt when no male role models are present and providing a more multi-dimensional socialization. Both women and men are needed for a child's mental and emotional health.

But most men don't believe what I believe. Most men believe boys need a man in the house to mimic ("look up to"). Hell, a lot of women (feminist and non-feminist) don't believe what I believe either.

Some feminist women think unacknowledged hyper-masculinity and disregard for black women (e-race-sure) is so prevalent in U.S. black males that all of them should be kept away from children. But I think men are trainable in the ways of feminism --especially since a lot of men don't recognize what feminism is and how it has benefited them in the first place.  
Many-a -non-feminist woman will keep a disaster-of-a-man in the home thinking he's good for her son...because a bad man is better than no man at all(?) If a man is a bad husband because he doesn't show up in the relationship or whatever, that's one thing; he can still be a good father in many ways. But it's an entirely different thing when women say about a man who cheats "He's a bad husband but a good father" That woman is lying to themselves and their sons and damaging future women everywhere.
A habitual lying-betrayer is not a good human being or a good role model, no matter how many pay checks he brings home or how nice the cars and house is. And a person not performing well at being a "good human being" cannot be "a good father" because he's teaching his son to be "a lying betrayer" too  -- especially if Mommy puts a reluctant seal of approval on abdominal behavior.   
 Furthermore, counting repeated BETRAYALS as "nothing" damages the entire black community for generations.   
  • Not only are there high profile men being put into the pseudo-harmless boys-will-be-boys category when they betray (cheat), these men are allowed to keep their "hero" status. Boys are affected because they mimic these men and become predatory. Girls are left the choice to grow up to be women that put up with betrayal as "normal" or take a rather predatory/consumption type attitude toward sex themselves. 
  • In my opinion, young girls are becoming harder-hearted at earlier and earlier ages, "playing the field" in the same loose, your-word-means-nothing sort of way as boys who hold highly visible black men betrayers as heroes. Some girls are being led to think that to become like boys is "progress" of some sort. This is a cheap imitation of feminism we need to live without. Becoming the social equals of men is not the same as becoming like men, same as becoming the social equals of whites is not the same as becoming like whites.  

In the black community, we have to be careful who are boys "look up to" and mimic. Having a boy (or a girl) look up to a man that holds betrayal as nothing, as boys will be boys is a horrible legacy to let your son (or daughter) take hold of.

And if successful black man after successful black man on television has white wife or a light wife, then that's something to worry about too because colorism is another legacy attitude you don't want passed down and through the black community. 

Individual Interracial marriages below 15% or so don't harm the black community. But seeing 70% to 80% of highly visible rich black men marry white and light re-injects the black community with the anti-black poison of white supremacy in the form of colorism. 

Don't think that the male love of mimicry --and the associated competition attached in the form of whose wife is prettier-- is limited to rich black men. 

I lost this link I had to white wives of white baseball players. But you'll have to take my word that it was amazing to see all these white baseball players with their cookie-cutter blond white women in photo after photo after photo.... There were like 25 of photos of white baseball player wives that looked damn near exactly the same.

The white blond trophy wives looked so much alike...I swear, if you set the white husbands at the 50 yard line of a football field and told them to run toward their wives, 80% of them would start off by running toward the wrong woman.

For a lot of rich men in public eye, it appears that their women are seen by them as Rolex's with legs -- just another object that proves he's a winner.

This is why some black men want that same white blond trophy wife that the white guys have. (Bernie Mack and Samuel L Jackson made fun of this in a movie once.)

Yet, some black men are self-conscious enough about their black self-image that they won't go for straight for a Becky trophy wife. Instead of a white chick, they will go for light chick in the form a bi-racial looking black woman, or an asian woman, or a latina.

Some will say I'm making something out of nothing, that all these images of dark skinned men with light and white women are evidence of colorblind love.

Again, I say:

1) Love comes second.
2) Attraction to looks comes first.
3) Coincidences don't come in multiple six-packs.
4) There is a pattern among high profile black men. They look for light and white women to bed, love, and sometimes marry. 


1) Black men who want to justify their attraction to the the light woman only will say things like "We are all black!" in the same indignant tone that white people will say, "There's only one race, the human race!"

2) Others will say they are allowed to have preferences for white/light women. (Few are brave enough to go this route)

3) The black man who only dates white, latina, or asian -- won't even date light black women-- he will feel compelled to make something wrong with black women so that his own blackness is not questioned. This black man who wants anything except a black woman like his mama? He will say that black women are angry or selfish or judgmental.

All of these ugly excuses from a certain kind of (usually dark-skinned) black man are an attempt to throw other people off the scent of their internalized racism. 

4) And then there are other black men, like Gilbert Arenas, who don't even know they are supposed to hide their hatred for black features on black women.

More important than all of the high visible black men that deny black women are the pro-black men (by reputation)
that don't appear to be aware of their own preferences
for the white aesthetic 
and whiteness in general BECAUSE
they wind up making questionable decisions...decisions that lean into whiteness/lightness while having nothing to do with whom they choose to bed.

This is what is most interesting to me 

because black men in Hollywood
who are held up as black heroes, 
due to certain successes, 
wind up being encouraged 
to create images of black people,
images that are presented to us as 
"pro-black" without interrogation, 
based solely on the creators 
pro-black reputation

...when those images could be 
damaging to black women, 
whether the women be light or dark.

In other words, John Ridley doesn't get a pass because he wrote the award winning 12 YEARS A SLAVE. If he created something damaging to black women, then he did. He deserves to be questioned every bit as hard as we do white people who create questionable black images.

So don't ever forget this:  

Nothing that is damaging to half the race is "pro-black."


It ought to be clear by now that I'm not questioning Ridley's fitness to create positive black images because of his choice of a pale wife. I'm questioning his fitness to create positive black images because it appears the same thing that made him choose to be attracted to his wife may have made him choose to e-race black women from GUERRILLA as if they are nothing, as if black women are NOT a more critical part of black history than non-black people including those that look like his non-black wife.

If he wanted to show how non-blacks were part of or dovetailed into the Black Power Movement in the UK, then he should have cast Asians and Latinx as side characters-- not as the main character in what was supposed to be "the black love story." 

If Ridley doesn't think so then the next time he does a fictional representation of black history, he should replace the black man with an Asian man and let the black woman character remain as central to the story he's telling. He's made it clear that b
lack women's history needs to be told a lot more often anyway.

read more tomorrow: