Some Black women of course are simply “perfect”. Then there’s the rest of us!
Since I’ve been discussing pathologies an adjacent conversation about appropriate responses must be made as well. There’s been some rather serious conversations about recognizing pathologies in others and removing oneself from those that choose to engage in destructive behavior that will negatively impact certain Black women at a few blogs.
Divestment has been avidly endorsed but some people haven’t defined what divestment means for themselves – or they’ve made sweeping and inaccurate assumptions. Nor have they read thoroughly the divestment strategies and reasoning for it presented at other blogs. Yet they rally against it. Basically if you see a tsunami headed your way a discussion about the speed at which the water will overtake you is moot. So is telling someone they can swim when you’ve got a helicopter ready to whisk you away – that’s rather disingenuous wouldn’t you agree?
It seems even the discussion of the reasons why BW should divest from certain areas (where mindsets that encourage depravity occur) some have twisted this into the tired and inaccurate argument that it’s somehow bashing all BM. Whatever! If it doesn’t apply to you there’s nothing to complain about.
There is also another obfuscation tactic by focusing on emotionally damaged BW in an effort at blaming and shaming without discussing how they got damaged to begin with.
- Mental illness – That requires medical attention.
- Skin shade racism – aka “Paper Bag Tests” and all the goes with it. The preoccupation with whiter-skinned BW in this country as somehow being better, prettier, more worthy has gone far too long and needs to be addressed. Remember those conversations about Michelle Obama being “dark-skinned” when honestly on a spectrum of skin tone she is medium but that’s besides the point? The racism that Black people engage against other Blacks is just as harmful as that of whites.
- Hair texture - See above. Let’s kill the term “good hair” once and for all. Let’s embrace the full spectrum of the beauty of ALL BW.
The message of indoctrination that BW are responsible for the entire world (other Blacks) and thinking about their own needs is selfish is one of the key misnomers that also needs to be dismantled. Not to mention the singular focus of a majority of BW on finding BM to mate with. That 70%+ unmarried statistic wasn’t a joke. Neither was the non-married but bearing children rate. The fact that it’s double in less than one entire generation should be cause of concern for everyone! If so many women feel ugly, unlovable and desperate and have been living under siege in deteriorating neighborhoods how can they (we) make sound choices?
Just for those that want to pin it solely at the feet of BW you should be reminded:
- BW don’t rove in packs and run trains (gang rape) men
- BW don’t stand on the street and make it impossible for any male above the age of 10 to be outside in peace
- BW don’t physically overpower men
- BW don’t grab the butts of BM when they’re outside
- BW didn’t initiate the stop snitching rule
Some women have foolishly become ride or die where they envision themselves to be Bonnie to the anti-hero (criminal) Clyde. It’s why certain laws were modified that made these women held equally responsible for the crimes of their men.
BW are somehow expected to hold a community together by its threads. Where have all the BM gone? They left to follow their bliss! The very real abandonment didn’t just happen overnight. The majority of the productive/successful BM have gone for quite some time though. You see it in who they choose to partner with and where they live. Nobody’s telling them to stay and fight or work with (and live with) those who may be more likely to commit a crime than graduate from college.
I was watching the Black List Vol 2 and RZA was on. Even he talked about divestment with his line, “Nobody wants to live in the hood.” In fact during that interview he specifically talks about moving away from the crime, grime and chaos and how he now lives in the country surrounded by land. He specifically mentioned raising children in peace and quiet. So why can’t all BW have the same thing without being a famous (male) musician? Why do so many of us take on the responsibility of rescuing other people when we are in fact drowning ourselves?
The argument for divestment and the point of it ultimately is about the rights of the individual to live a quality life versus the rights of some in the underclass who want to behave badly. If a certain underbelly of society wants to exist amidst chaos you can’t stop them. You can try to help for sure but that doesn’t mean you should martyr yourself and your children. Even the film I featured American Violet while very poignant, there is a real life woman who was railroaded.
She lived in one of the residential cesspools. She may not have been brought down directly by the other residents of her housing project but there was an established history of criminality that had been long accepted. The “good” people thinking they could duck for cover and try to stay above the fray didn’t protect her from adverse effects. Though there was very real racism and greed involved with those sweeping drug charges, a certain class of people who engage in certain behaviors directly or those that tolerate it have been targeted.
If Blacks could survive slavery you can move out of these areas and set boundaries about not allowing that element to follow you if you really want to. It may not be easy but it is certainly possible. Black women have to realize their survival depends on not being in dysfunctional environments or surrounded by dangerous people.