Fleace Weaver, an L.A. socialite and the organizer of the night’s event, got the idea after noticing that many of her black friends had it all — a career, house, independence — but no man. Weaver is black. She dates men of all colors — black, white, brown — and wants more black women to do the same. “I am an international lover. All right; I am an equal opportunity lover,” Weaver says. “That means I love who is good to me. I don’t want anybody just because they’re a certain color.”
Michelle Obama may have become an archetypal African-American female success story — law career, strong marriage, happy children — but the reality is often very different for other highly educated black women.They face a series of challenges in navigating education, career, marriage and child-bearing, dilemmas that often leave them single and childless even when they’d prefer marriage and family, according to a research study recently presented at the American Sociological Society’s annual meeting in San Francisco.One big reason why these women remained childless is, as one might expect, that they go unmarried, experts say. “Their marriage chances have declined,” Brueckner explained. “This may sound trivial but one reason is that they outnumber men in this education group.” The disparity in education is important because Americans have a strong tendency to marry those with equal levels of education, a trend that has only grown stronger since World War II. “So since there are fewer men with the same education,” Brueckner continued, “you either have to find another group you can marry or you are out of luck. You have nowhere to go.”Highly educated black men tend to “outmarry” (marry outside race, religion or ethnicity) at a higher rate than black women, researchers say. Think of Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates or Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas. Both married white women. (Funny how they chose two men who have displayed they have NO VALUE to us!!)Black women are either much more reluctant to marry outside their race, or do not have the opportunity to do so. The answer is both, Clarke said. In interviews with a large number of black women, she found that community pressures on black women to marry black men can be more intense than the reverse. Of course if highly educated black women felt free to have children outside of marriage, they could still have a family. When some white women make that choice it is often seen as a kind of liberal empowerment.But according to Clarke, black women are concerned about looking “ghetto.” Public interpretation of our actions matter for everyone, but especially for black women, Clarke explained. “When it comes to the issue of black women and should or should they not make a choice to have a child alone, these women are very much aware that the decision to do it makes people question their class status. We associate single unwed child bearing with poor African-American women.” Not all women who remain unmarried and childless are unhappy about it. But for a set of sometimes complex social reasons, some high-achieving black women find themselves disappointed.
But Weaver argues that Mr. Right doesn’t have to be Mr. Black. “There’s no reason for us to believe we have to be alone. The only thing that’s keeping us from finding someone is that we limit ourselves,” Weaver says.If black women are set on “black love only,” Weaver says they may be passing up good men. “Some of you all out here have gotten some signals, and you all missed them. Or you got signals, and you all blew him off because he wasn’t chocolate,” Weaver says. “But we’ve got to get over that — unless you want to be home with chocolate cats.”