Black Magazines, Black Fashion: Burt-Murray Goes White and Vogue Africa is Fiction

Total Fiction: Vogue Africa

Vogue Africa by Mario Epanya

Vogue (Africa) doesn’t exist, but the pictures circulating the web are fascinating, intriguing, and perplexing. The photographer is Mario Epanya. He wanted Vogue (Conde Naste) to have this magazine showcasing Africa.

I’m curious and would like to ask: couldn’t he find investors in oil-rich Nigeria, diamond-rich South Africa, or booming Botswana to help out? I think his idea is outstanding. We can see from the cover and many more on some blogs – he obviously has the models and the talent.

Why must black men always go to white men with a cup in hand begging for something when he already has all the resources he needs to get started?

Vogue Africa Images

Angela Burt-Murray Prefers White

The Editor-in-Chief of Essence Magazine decided to go interracial, but only for her hiring decision(s). This appears to be the one time she believes in quality and the philosophy of “may the best wo/man win”. She wouldn’t dare encourage black women to seek men (of any race) that’s best for her. She saves the philosophy of seeking quality for herself.

Burt-Murray prefers to suggest black women go to strip clubs to find that purple unicorn “good black man” tucking $1 into LaFlowanda’s g-string. Great idea, Ms Burt-Murray. You gonna keep it real for those young women who are S.O.L. as they face a 2 million black male deficit.

Angela Burt-Murray wrote this stunning, articulate and brilliant essay explaining that the “White editor won’t diminish our love of black women.” The people who run Essence claim they have love for black women.

Oh, yeah! Dis must be love. Is this the kind of love, where your broken bones and black eyes are a result of love taps? That you complain too much, otherwise he wouldn’t have to hit you? You should be grateful he loves you, because no one can love someone such as yourself? Yeah, that kind of love.

She can keep it.

Who Should Replace Her

Don’t get me wrong: I don’t care about the fashion editor hire. I feel her comment about “quality” could apply to the following.

  • Encourage black women to be open to men (any race) who are quality as opposed to any-black-male-with-a-pulse worship. Stop encouraging their involvement with baby daddys, men in relationships, men in jail, ex-cons, men seeking FWB / hookups, and actors who mysteriously cannot find a “date” in Hollyweird.
  • As to her position as Editor-in-Chief, I said it on Huffington.com and I’ll say it here:

Next hire: a white woman to replace Angela Burt-Murray, because that white woman will have the vision and understanding of black women’s issues. Good hire, Time-Warner!

Her replacement can be those white women who sleep with black men featured on the cover of Essence, are given a black pass by blacks who put them on their blogs, defended by blacks who say silly things like “they’re not white”, and are called “black” due to negro-proxy*. That way Burt-Murray’s replacement wont actually be a white woman, but the modern-day black woman replacement we see featured everywhere. We wont even notice the difference.

It’s Not About Diversity

Folks can chatter about the importance of diversity in Burt-Murray’s hiring decision. Yet, I know this: one could literally find hundreds, if not thousands, of unemployed black women desperate for a job. She could have rotated the gig and given many of these black women a chance. Instead we get a high-school level snark essay about issues she think we should protest and boycott. She took the safe bet. I get it. Her bosses told her who to hire; she couldn’t come out and say it. Diversity is a catch phrase for: I don’t write the checks.

The case with Vogue in Africa and Essence is this: de boss man is de white man. But he’s not the villain here. His priorities are different. His focus is on money: advertisers, distribution, expenses, and circulation. Multiculturalism and diversity are the least of his concerns, but it makes a nice cover when you are forcing negroes to do your bidding.

However, black folks have nothing to complain about. If you want to showcase “black fashion and black beauty” in a high-end fashion magazine put your money where your mouth is.

I will tell you why it doesn’t happen: do black people really believe black women are as beautiful as white women?

Are we able to produce (without begging anybody for something) a first rate magazine? Yes, of course.

The reality is this: the effort has been tried and tried many times in the past, and you know what happens? No one bought the magazine(s).

*theroot.com – has this mess. the “blackest” white people around. this site is dr. gate’s brainchild.

Linky-Loos

  1. thegrio.com: why-africa-vogue-is-considered-out-of-fashion
  2. thegrio.com: essence-one-white-editor-wont-diminish-our-love-of-black-women
  3. thegrio.com: essence-white-editor-caught-up-in-off-color-controversy
  4. clutchmagonline.com: hires-white-fashion-director-leaves-loyal-readers-asking-why
  5. huffingtonpost: essence hires white fashion editor
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Working it Hard vs Working it Smart

My philosophy, while working towards a goal, used to be: if it was not an agonizingly painful task, then the goal was not worth achieving.

I’m still wondering exactly where, or how, I acquired that insane mindset, because agony doesn’t justify the means to an end.

In the early years of putting myself through school and working at the same time, which seemed never ending, pain became associated with achievement.

Overall the pain was basically hustling: a lack of sleep, hunger pains, walking for miles without transportation (and I had achy knees back then), worrying about criminals, worrying about failing a class, being able to afford the school, finding a job after graduation, and so on and so on.

It’s hard admitting I was a masochist, but what could I do? I wasn’t one to give up on anything easily. I’m still not that way.

Today, I’ve eased away from that position of absolute sacrifice, absolute pain for the end result. I try to work smart over break the back slogging.

I’ve interviewed at many places for a job, and when I was hired (I always liked the places where I worked) one thing stood out at the interviews: they were really nice to me and never treated me like a convict. There are people who never offer you a drink, tell you where the bathroom is, or out of some decency and kindness ask if you need anything. I don’t ask, because I am testing them as well.

There was a company I went and interviewed at and they wanted the equivalent of: a lie detector test, blood sample, urine sample and maybe first born if available. It would be cool if the job involved national security – I’d gladly pee in cup – or as Laurence Fishburne said: “I’d bleed to keep the flag red.”

However, my skills are computer programming. I’m a highly adaptable glorified desk jockey, there’s no larceny in my heart. I’ve even been called “nice.”

I’ve dialed down the hardass, but I certainly don’t want to let my guard down either and think everything must be easy or it’s not doable.

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