Perhaps, I should ask why putting yourself FIRST is such an anomaly for some black women who are reading BWE-related blogs? Do those readers ever notice they have failed to apply the basic principles in utilizing their free agency by not being concerned about what other people (be it black males or white women) are doing unless it is negatively impacting their lives?
You’d think women would be far too busy applying their Charm Offensive, Evaluating Men For Alliances and Marriage and continuing their education in the school of life by thinking and acting GLOBALLY. Instead, I keep seeing the same exact conversations resulting from the various straw-man arguments put forth by many women. It begs the question what some of ya’ll are doing?
You don’t have any time to waste!
I’ve been watching the growing conflict between writers tethered to traditional publishing even after they’ve been shafted in some way, newer writers who are hedging their bets and other established writers who’ve decided to seek better opportunities as they present themselves. It has been very interesting seeing these industry changes unfold.
You have some who are making fear-based decisions, ready to give up their book rights permanently. They insist traditional publishing is the only way even though they are alternately being raked over the coals and plundered for all their resources. Amongst them are a select few who might be doing well, but the majority are being used. They’ve forgotten as content providers publishers need them, not the other way around.
The newer writers are busy sitting on the sidelines, coming up with all the reasons why they can’t take control of their careers and list various worst case scenarios so they do nothing. They want everyone to get along so they’ll align themselves with publishers, but not as equal partners negotiating from a position of strength. The don’t see themselves as the ones providing a valuable commodity. They go to the publishers as beggars, willing to be used to be accepted.
The writers who’ve set themselves apart are those who take the time to analyze the business lay of the land, knowing things are in flux, thus staying on their toes. They know what they have to offer is valuable, so they’re going to negotiate for the best deals that work to their interests. They’re not going to tie themselves down to any one model, but are more fluidly seeking out the best arrangements that work at that time.
That’s more or less the gist of the current situation with writers. What about black women?
I ask this question and use this analogy because it seems the most fitting for those who know their worth and create opportunities that work for them – not against them. They automatically have high expectations for reciprocity. I found a one particular conversation at two separate forums – Betty Chambers Has Spoken and Black Women Living Well of great interest. Both blog hosts were addressing identical “questions” from two black women (or so they claim to be). I found it very telling how their commenters both made the same false accusations.
It shows just how indoctrinated so many black women are still and how the idea of putting their needs first is such a foreign concept they haven’t considered it. Or, I’ll say even if they venture outside the lines of the “black woman boundaries”, they want to make sure other black women stay firmly put in that box. They’re too worried about some imagined black thought police to haul them away for thinking independently.
As a blog forum host, I’ve seen this response over and over again. I’ve had a lot of black women protesting my discussions about the foul behavior of the black male collective towards black women. It was particularly virulent two years ago and last Spring, but now not so much. People have figured out that I don’t take kindly to being trifled with regarding these matters.
I wonder from time to time, if these women realize how unoriginal their questions are which means their thought patterns and motivations are firmly entrenched in old models that have not and do not work in the best interest of black women. Since they’re reading forums that are challenging the status quo, are they just passing through with blinders firmly attached?
I’ve asked this question in some variation over the past three years, but have yet to receive a satisfactory answer. For if they actually comprehended the larger discussion at hand – black women free agency – how could they be stuck at zero? Ignorance or willful disdain? When you see the same arguments repeated in a loop it gets tiresome but the blog hosts answered very patiently. I’m not convinced these were good faith conversations though and there wasn’t some subterfuge at play. I’d be so embarrassed to find myself amongst those recycling the same straw man arguments used by others.
This comment is an excerpt from a reader who claims to be happily attached to a non-black male while chastising other black women for not hunting high and low for a “good brotha” — like her brother. Shouldn’t she be focused on her own life?
I myself am finding happiness right now with a non-black man… but it bothers me when I hear people say things like “I’m done with black men!” and I do hear this sometimes… and it speaks a couple volumes about our own damage when we become so jaded that we can’t see the black men in college because we’re blinded by the black men in jail… I say “to hell with them” if they can’t get their s**t together… but what about my brother?
This reader is a classic Sista-Soldier type, holding it down for the black male race. So…it’s okay for her to seek happiness by being expansive but other black women are still supposed to be mining for gold in the Wild West? Um, I don’t think so! Whether she sees herself as being an enemy to other black women or not, her behavior shows she has not done the necessary mental and emotional work required of a “free” woman. Not if she’s intentionally blocking other black women’s progress!
There is no confusion here. This is deliberate sabotage when you look at things in black and white, then you are either actively supporting or denying opportunities for growth. Being “blind” to it simply means you have closed off your mind to it, not that it isn’t visible. In case you’re thinking I’m being harsh here’s an excerpt from this other reader who emphatically states they are not a Sista-Soldier type but if it it walks and quacks like a duck….
“Um… You judge my intelligence base on a me re-blogging a post about being a Chris Brown fan? Yikes!…and no I do not coddle black men. Everyone should be held responsible for their actions. I am not a sister-soldiering, nothing-but-a-black-man type of girl. I just don’t don’t think it’s right to make generalizations about black men as a whole based on statistics. It’s not right to make generalizations about anyone based on statistics.”
A “Beat Her Down” Brown fan eh? Who claims to support black women? This begs the question of why certain black women are still SOLELY focused on protecting VIOLENT GROWN MEN instead of their own elevation? I could say, they just don’t get it. STILL. And write them off, but I’m hoping those of you reading will finally connect the dots and get away.
- NONE OF THEIR ARGUMENTS ARE ORIGINAL
- THEY ARE FOLLOWING A SCRIPT
- THEY ARE STILL INDOCTRINATED
- THEY HAVE A LOT OF INTERNAL EVALUATING LEFT
- YOU CAN’T SKIP STEPS, LEST YOU STUMBLE OVER YOUR MENTAL BLOCKS
I am urging all of you who still think this way while commenting at these forums to stop play-acting at choosing the empowerment lifestyle. You’re compromised and unreliable. This is why I don’t allow this type of nonsense on my blog — nothing ever changes with most of you and it’s a waste of time. Get out of the way so that other women may move ahead of the line. Take the time to really decide what you want and act accordingly.
Some of you want to have it both ways, by pretending to be in support of black women moving forward, but divided loyalties make you a liability. When statistics point to negative conditions that effect a majority of black women why are you going to argue about it? If black males were so concerned about this they would do something to address it! Women who are serious about their progress must separate from the fence-sitters as well as the direct obstructionists. I applaud both forum hosts for their measured and eloquent responses, but I urge other women to not fall for the con game of these “confused” women. They need to catch up — you should not stop to explain things to them. You might miss your “Love Boat” or have the life sucked out of you by a Zombie walking amongst you. Remember to keep it moving!