Black Women – Devil’s Advocate: Are Black People Doomed?

It’s the last day of September, Devil’s Advocate* month. It’s round up time. :D

Before I begin, I have to highlight these fantastic blogs for their incisive commentary:

They all provide awesome analysis into the current state of the “black community”. The beauty of these blog posts is that they are complementary, logically flow together, and it can’t get better than that.

Follow The Trail Before It Goes Cold

What’s happening? Perhaps you’ve been reading some of these blogs mentioned above and others. You’ve been thinking: What are these women talking about? What are they trying to get at? They’re obsessed with empowering black women and girls by knocking the “brothers” down, harshly criticizing black people, abandoning the “black community” (by moving to low crime neighborhoods), and heading off to Europe, the West Coast or around the world, to find a white man (or non-black) to marry.

Apparently, the last straw for some people antagonistically familiar with some of these blogs was the No Wedding No Womb (NWNW) campaign. However, not all of the BWE / IR blogs were involved. Why? While it may seem to be a part of the logical outgrowth of these blogs, in some fashion NWNW is the antithesis of the general message.

Please note, I support NWNW, yet it also points in a direction that doesn’t fit within the contextual theme of the BWE / IR blogs.

No Wedding No Womb: The Blacklash

There’s been an interesting reaction to the No Wedding No Womb (NWNW) campaign. A lot of people saw a scarlet letter tattooed to their foreheads, and it stopped them from thinking. They lashed out at the spearhead of the campaign. The first and most consistent (and let’s be real, the only one they cared about) criticism: she’s married to a white man.

That’s right, her white husband meant that the general purpose of NWNW was suspect, illegitimate, ill conceived, and problematic, because it did NOT do the following:

  1. support “black love”,
  2. encourage “good brothas” to marry black women,
  3. deify black men,
  4. hold black males responsible,
  5. uplift the black family,
  6. use a less “judgmental” campaign phrase,
  7. blame white people,
  8. promise to fight patriarchy,
  9. hail the superiority of “non-traditional” families,
  10. recognize the incredible benefits of fatherless black children,
  11. request increases in government funding,
  12. support a woman’s right to be sexually adventurous / promiscuous,
  13. realize that the real reason the OOW rate is so high, is the fault of married black women.

You got that right: married black women aren’t doing their part, so the slack is being taken up by unmarried black women. It’s not quality of black people that counts, it’s the quantity. Folks need to keep the population high, quality of life for black women and girls notwithstanding. So there’s actually nothing wrong. Everything’s fine. Move along people. Stop gawking.

Are Black People Doomed?

Katrina was a fast example of black decline and government indifference at all levels. There are other examples that abound as well. In August 2010, a majority black crowd lined up to be put on a waiting list for section-8 housing in the Atlanta area. The number of units available came to less than 700. Crowds estimated at 30,000 to 50,000 (likely 97% black women and children) showed up. This is because the government is getting out of the public housing business. The number of available units is shrinking.

Hey folks, everything really is fine and dandy, please ignore the high rates of school dropouts, unemployment, incarceration rates, rates of death for young black women from AIDS, homicide rates, children born out of wedlock (OOW), black children in foster care, and the attrition of “good” jobs, etc.

I Like My Kool Aid Purple

In case it’s not apparent, I’ll spell it out:

Will black people see increased government funding? Not gonna happen. We’ve got wars to fight. Monies for social programs are being cut, and it’ll continue.

Is keeping the population high part of our strength? Doesn’t matter. Latinos already outnumber black people. Asians eventually will too. Plus Asians value higher education, strong family units, and possess incredible financial resources. Both groups marry whites in high numbers.

Are we politically relevant? Nope. Don’t be fooled by the current presence in the White House. When a member (Shirley Sherrod) of the group giving the highest percentage of votes can get tossed without a pause – the message is clear – black women have no political clout. That’s because we never use it, we give it away with no bargaining power.

Are there enough “good brothers” a.k.a purple unicorns around? He left the hood over forty years ago. Each generation leaves at the first peak of dawn. When they make good (career, financially and socially) they marry a non-black woman. Nearly a quarter (20% plus) of all eligible black men (you know, the “good brothers”) are married to a non-black woman.

White people have the same problems too, we just lead the trend. And the price of tea in China is what? Before the 1960’s, there used to be more white people in jail than black people. They were the face of crime. Don’t count on them following us off the cliff. They believe in course correction.

The government will solve our problems, or white people will save us. I know it hasn’t been stated blatantly in that fashion, but I realize a number of people seem to believe this. They’ve tried (see Affirmative Action and the War on Poverty). They’re done (see Ronald Reagan, Tea Party). The guilt is gone (see current White House resident). They put their children first, as always. They’ve got their own worries about family, friends, and foes. The economy, wars, environment, endangered animals, landing on Mars, and so on has their attention.

Should We Really Care?

Nope. There will always be a tiny top tier that survives and thrives. This sliver of population doesn’t appear on television. They aren’t entertainers, sports athletes, or media appointed leaders. They stay out of the lime light. They’ve planned for the quality of life for their children. They’ve leaving a valuable legacy for their progeny. They have their eye on the ball. They aren’t worried about the masses.

Neither should we.

One of the critical goals of the BWE /IR blogs is recommending how to increase quality of life for black women and girls. Criticism serves to help you see the forest for the trees. Like all advice – you take what works and leaves the rest.

There is no “black community” to save. It is all individual effort, and it is also determined by the company you keep. Choose your friends and advisers wisely. If they are not enriching your spirit, your mind, body and finances. Run, do not walk, away.

Last Thoughts on This (For Now)

Based on the feedback from twitter and blogs against NWNW, I’d say that some very vocal black people are unconcerned about their own general well being, and that of other black people. So why should anyone else be?

However, there are self-sufficient people who could do with some assistance. There are motivated black women and girls who are interested in moving out and up. They are the ones we care about.

As for those who believe they have to be persuaded to care about themselves – remember this proverb: You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink.

**UPDATE**

From the woman who started the ball rolling with BWE / IR blogs in general. I salute you, Halima. Thank you for this comment:

Thanks for this GoldenAh

and for the record I support NWNW. And yes you have rightly pointed out that there is a certain disconnect with BWIR which leans towards bw doing their thing independent of bm (because we feel as things stand, struggling to make it work with bm and bw is of no use and wont work), but the angle i come in on is that bw should be protected and supported in child bearing so yes it links to the wider sense of NWNW (indeed NWNW has never stated it is only about bw and bm though i know for a fact that this is the underlying context within which oow is being considered).

What the whole storm around NWNW has shown me…there are some strong gatekeepers of black dysfunction and destruction, folks happy to let the situation continue to deteriorate while they have intellectual debates about the right way to do ‘activism’ that is if there is need for it to start with!

One could say that poverty has become an integral part of blackness and of the ‘culture’ of black people and thus some folks are fighting tooth and nail to ensure that this culture continues because it is authentic for blackness, indeed rather than look for ways to get bw to lift up and out, they argue for a continuation of the dynamics that keep black people/women authentically black i.e. in poverty.

some feel that because they have signed up to ‘progressive’ principles, they have no choice but to support bw’s activities that mire them in poverty, indeed they have to support bw self limiting choices out of their devotion and dedication to feminist perspectives like ‘not slut shaming’.

I can only think of how Jesus said to the Pharisees that ‘The Sabbath was made for man not the man for the Sabbath’, when they insisted in ‘sticking’ to the letter of the law than grant freedom to the person under its yoke, and so as i have said before, any feminism that doesn’t address bw needs and situation is not one bw should be too concerned about!

remember that black people are always the forerunners in terms of negative trends, so we are now ‘leading’ in what could well soon become a  mainstream debate; ‘do people have a right to be left to wilfully chart a ‘self destruct’ course’.

it is important that each young bw know that there are two factions out for their souls. those who want them to continue to be free to make the choices that lead them into permanent underclass status because as you know, ‘it is a personal freewill choice‘, and then there are others who are fighting for them to survive and we are not content to just say, ‘well it was their choice’. we are the latter, who are not too attached to any ‘ideology’ to be happy to let our daughters and girl-children go to hell in a hand basket.


*According to Wikipedia, Devil’s Advocate is:

In common parlance, a devil’s advocate is someone who, given a certain argument, takes a position he or she does not necessarily agree with, just for the sake of argument. In taking such position, the individual taking on the devil’s advocate role seeks to engage others in an argumentative discussion process. The purpose of such process is typically to test the quality of the original argument and identify weaknesses in its structure, and to use such information to either improve or abandon the original, opposing position.
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No Wedding No Womb

No Wedding No Womb

Welcome!

The post regarding this topic can be found here: Black Women – Devil’s Advocate: Are Black Males Real Men?

That question is meant to challenge the relationship dynamic and mate selection criteria of black women today….

It’s something to think about.

Thanks to Christelyn D. Karazin, founder and organizer, No Wedding No Womb! for inviting me to contribute, and spear heading this movement.

Enjoy!

**Update**

From Connie Whitener via examiner.com:

On September 22 – the 148th anniversary of The Emancipation Proclamation – African American writers throughout the United States are being encouraged to flood the blogosphere for an entire day of online debate, information, and commentary under the auspices of “No Wedding, No Womb!” (NWNW) an initiative that seeks to address the problems of-and provide solutions to-the unplanned pregnancies among African American single women. Nearly half of all families in the African American community are headed by Black women. In addition, more than 70 percent of live births in the Black community are to unmarried women.

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Black Women – Devil’s Advocate: Has our femininity been denied?

It’s September, and it’s Devil’s Advocate* month. This topic will be a bit spicier than usual. :D

Are black women allowed to be women? Has our femininity been denied or compromised? Do we have the right to be respected, protected, and cherished like all other women?

We are accused of being jealous acid tossing lunatics by lying media whores. We are accused of being overly racially sensitive when we are being insulted by deranged bigoted radio talk show hosts. We are the first ones tossed under the political bus by individual(s) we overwhelmingly support out of misguided and ignorant racial loyalty.

Most of our issues are ignored by or are back-burner issues of so-called women’s groups. All of our issues are ignored by “civil rights” groups, unless it is to lay blame in our direction, raise funds from us, or rally around violent black male felon(s) who are a lethal and deadly menace to black women and men in their neighborhoods. We are berated, harassed, and demeaned to put all out, audition for a date, and prove our worth to useless black males who wont lift a finger to respect, provide, or protect us.

How are we being portrayed in the mainstream media right now?

One of the latest covers of Elle’s magazine is mendacious. No, it is beyond that, it is evil.

One of these pictures is not like the others.

Gabourey Sidibe a.k.a. Gabby

It winks: We’re making fun of her, ’cause this is the best looking actress they (black people) have to offer. They have three average looking, cosmetically enhanced white women all glammed up. We get someone who pc-wise people are gushing to declare is beautiful, acceptable, and attractive. Elle couldn’t use Jennifer Hudson?

And miss me with the garbage about hating on Ms. Sidibe. This topic is deeper than that.

Who do these folks think they’re fooling? The publisher of Elle is French – Hachette Filipacchi Media U.S., Inc. (HFM U.S.) , and the editor-in-chief is Robbie Myers. That’s who’s making a mockery of this black woman and the rest of us.

Is this their answer to requests for black staff? Investments in black magazines? Whether black women are attractive? Oh, I know, this fits the “Black women don’t sell covers. We lose money with their faces on the magazine” B.S.

Why is she the only big person?

Hey, I would ecstatically and gladly accept Ms. Sidibe as part of the unique, multicultural, fat acceptance, and “quirky looking people are beautiful too” cover, once they have a 400 pound homely white woman, with too much makeup on, wearing a tent-sized red mu-mu, and her stringy dishwater hair looking like dry straw, filling an entire magazine cover.

White women don’t “other” themselves. They are very, very protective of their image as feminine, sexy, and desirable women – despite the carping of “feminists” over some images.

Someone once said: I’d rather they ignore us than pay us this kind of attention.

You need to watch them. They are quite eager to get black women to be the tough-manly-gal, the jealous-and-hateful-acid-throwing chick, the loudmouth sassy troublemaker, the office mammy / Oprah / free therapist, and the “oh, you’re so brave to be xyz” kind of person.

Ask yourself these questions: At work, do some of these chicks come to you complaining about people like you’re going to be the one to set their tormentors straight? Do you get asked to lift heavy objects when there are plenty of guys around they could ask? Are you always volunteered for clean-up duty, cooking, or bringing in food? Do people push their leftovers, Halloween Candy, fattening meals, or other unhealthy garbage at you? I’m sure there are more examples that come to mind.

I’ll repeat myself: I might be willing to accept the alternative “other” images of us, once they let Ellen DeGeneres and Rachel Maddow on MSNBC be as unattractive and masculine as their original, keeping-it-real selves used to be. But if you notice, the first thing they went through was a total and complete makeover. They were made to conform to an ideal;  an existing feminine and attractive package.

Ladies. All of these people out there enjoy “othering” you. DO NOT EMBRACE IT. Let those bitches go first.

It’s a disgusting and deadly thing these people like to do to black women. When you accept “othering”, MEN wont and do not regard you as feminine. They will not come and protect you. You leave yourself vulnerable. That’s why people like throwing “strong black woman” at us. No one feels we are entitled to respect, protection, to be provided for, or cherished like other women.

Nearly everywhere one looks, there’s an overweight, or obese black woman (who’s often loud) receiving  mainstream media attention and accolades. Even if her career is going to last 5 minutes. Or maybe she’s the face of an extremely harsh and pungent detergent, feminine yeast problems, or other unattractive ailments, and even if she’s pleasant, the product is nice – there’s something off about her.

That big loud woman fits a mammy stereotype. Things haven’t changed when it comes to this offensive image of black women. She’s been around since Gone With the Wind and before. Her imagine was created to “other” us. I honor and respect her sacrifices. Black women needed these roles to survive and thrive.

However, we do not need to embrace her now.

A lot of us – feeling conflicted – honestly believe that if we embrace these “othering” images, they’ll eventually give way to those of beautiful, feminine, graceful and glamorous black women. Haven’t we been here before?

Don’t black women realize that when we ARE making strides, they deliberately bring up garish images of us?

Unfortunately, some of us fight each other over it, because for a number of us it means some kind of “acceptance” in all our diverse glory. I notice that this diversity almost always happens to be represented by the same type of morbidly obese, grotesquely crude, asexual and unfeminine black woman. I’m not putting all of this at Ms. Sidibe’s door. But would she have been as widely embraced if she was as slim as Zoe Saldana after doing only one bloody damn movie? At least Ms. Saldana has several blockbusters under her belt.

Funk that nonsense. I am not embracing “otherness.” I want black women to look as hot, glamorous, sexy, desirable, and feminine as the average looking, cosmetically enhanced, photoshopped white chicks on the cover of any magazine. We are women too. We can look as good, if not better, than they do.

Do we believe we are feminine? Are we equal to them as women? Or have we gone so deep down the “othering”, unfeminine and unattractive well that if Tyler Perry showed up as Madea on the cover of a magazine as an Influenial Black Woman – we’d talk about how much progress that is for us? Or would we only complain about the dress and wig he chose to wear? Would we miss the insult entirely?

I think we’re still missing the insult(s).

Black women wake up. Embrace being a woman first. These people are working hard to rob us of our womanhood, our femininity, and sense of self. Don’t let them do it. Don’t accept this distorted view of ourselves, where we are the “other.”

We are women. Our luminous, satiny, and beautiful dark skins do not detract or subtract from that.

*According to Wikipedia, Devil’s Advocate is:

In common parlance, a devil’s advocate is someone who, given a certain argument, takes a position he or she does not necessarily agree with, just for the sake of argument. In taking such position, the individual taking on the devil’s advocate role seeks to engage others in an argumentative discussion process. The purpose of such process is typically to test the quality of the original argument and identify weaknesses in its structure, and to use such information to either improve or abandon the original, opposing position.
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Black Women – Devil’s Advocate: Are Black Males Real Men?

It’s September, and it’s Devil’s Advocate* month.

I was sent a link to this picture. Thanks Chocholatestar. 😀

We don’t know who created it, but it does beg the question: Are black males real men? People like to pretend that out of wedlock (OOW) births are an issue that is the sole responsibility of, and problem for, black women to resolve. It is not. Although black people love to embrace this particular myth, I need to repeat this fact to shatter it. Black culture or societies, whether in America, or around the world are NOT matriarchal. It never has been. Not by accident, not by default, and not by design.

It is a man’s world. Always has been, always will be. People enjoy tossing the words “strong black woman” and matriarchal around to hide a glaringly obvious defect: black males are failing as men. Their sole competitors are other men, not black women. Socially, economically, and developmentally they are lagging behind. Black women cannot fix that problem for them. No matter how financially generous, emotionally supportive, abject, submissive, relentlessly hyper-critical and abnegating of self – you cannot lift nor mold an “adult” black male into a man. It is self-destructive. It is the core of dysfunction.

Years ago, a radio talk show host I was listening to, without an ounce of political correctness in his body, made the following joke:

Question: “What is Father’s Day called in the black community?”

Answer: “Who’s My Daddy Day.”

So not only does a national talk show host know about the situation, it’s considered a joke. Despite what people may think: the joke is on black males, not black women.

Recently, a football coach of a prominent college mentioned that the only recruits that interest him are those with a father involved in his life. I think the coach was one of the few people talking about a strategy that people already utilize without giving voice to. Despite the polite chatter of the mass media, in real life people are quietly and severely penalizing the OOW offspring of black males.

Why? Because if they don’t care about their children, why should they expect others to?

Which brings me to this point: why mess with a male who statistically is predisposed not to marry, provide protection, bring resources to the relationship, offer support, or bother to raise his own children? Jill Scott may wince at “brothas” who are marrying non-black women, but she willingly had a child for one with a I-Am-Irresponsible neon sign over his head.

Is she a masochist? Perhaps.

Black women, do yourselves a favor, don’t join the masochists’ club(s). You are entitled to be happy. Don’t let anybody tell you that you are selfish, greedy, mercenary, a gold digger or desperate, because you seek a MAN who is going to do the things that most normal men around the world automatically do: marry, provide for their families, and raise their children.

Always consider this: there are millions of illegal immigrant MEN willing to face murderous gangs, cross a deadly border, walk for thousands of miles in the desert, eagerly join our military, and work from dust to dawn at sub-minimum wages just to send their meager earnings home to feed, clothe, and shelter HIS WIFE and KIDS.

Why? Because that’s what REAL MEN do.

*According to Wikipedia, Devil’s Advocate is:

In common parlance, a devil’s advocate is someone who, given a certain argument, takes a position he or she does not necessarily agree with, just for the sake of argument. In taking such position, the individual taking on the devil’s advocate role seeks to engage others in an argumentative discussion process. The purpose of such process is typically to test the quality of the original argument and identify weaknesses in its structure, and to use such information to either improve or abandon the original, opposing position.
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Pretty Guy of the Moment: Sendhil Ramamurthy

His name is a mouthful (snicker), but OMG – he’s so fine. One of the prettiest men on television.

I am happy to see him getting work after Heroes treated him so poorly. His character went from central to sidelined. It’s like they didn’t know what to do with him. Not his fault though. The writers were stupid and messed up a good show that could still be running!

He is on the show Covert Affairs, and for as long as it lasts I’ll be watching for him. Yummy.

 
 
 
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Black Women – Devil’s Advocate: You Gotta Chase a White Man

It’s September, and it’s Devil’s Advocate* month. Let’s have some fun, shall we? :D

You’ve been dateless, man-free, and frustratingly single this entire summer, month, year, decade, or century.

All these BWE / BW-IR blogs are starting to work your last nerve. Why?

You are getting so effing tired of hearing all these damn rules of what YOU gotta do to get you some swirl action.

You are getting so tired of these relentlessly cheerful, unnaturally happy, skinny ass, absolutely perfect, nauseatingly special black women who find it sooooo dayumn easy to get hold of a (white) man. It’s like some of these chicks rolled out of bed, opened the front door, and there stood Mr. Prince Charming with a dozen red roses in one hand and a 14kt diamond engagement ring in the other. It’s gotta be maddening to find out that he looks like Bradley Cooper or Jonathan Rhys Meyers with Ryan Reynolds’s deliciously hot body.

It’s been a long, long, dry (really dry and you’re thirsty ’bout now), hot summer, and you didn’t get yours.

The “solutions” that keep coming are fast and furious, yet they’re not only contradictory, they seem annoyingly unrealistic and unreachable. You wanna hear some “keepin’ it real” advice from one black woman to another. Not stuff you could easily read in any white woman’s magazine or The Rules book.

Everywhere you go – you keep asking the same question: Where are all these wonderful white men these chicks keep finding? ‘Cause no one’s really looked your way since your hairdresser “accidentally” dyed your hair baboon-ass red, and promised the color would fade in a week.

As the Devil’s Advocate, I’m here to confirm your worst fears: finding a man will be hardest task you’ve ever undertaken. The truth of the matter is: these white guys really aren’t checking for YOU. Of course, it’s easy for all these other ladies. But for you? Pshaw. You will have to roll up your sleeves and get to work.

I know the excuses. So let’s throw them under the bus:

  • you’re not heading to Europe for a man.
  • you have no intention of traveling for luv.
  • you’re not losing 10-50+ plus pounds just to get a man. they gotta love you as you are.
  • you’re not joining any clubs that are dominated by men.
  • you’re uniquely quirky (weird) with a strange sense of humor. guys don’t dig you.
  • you don’t want to hear any mess about your hair. ever again.
  • you ain’t planning on grinning and skinning all day for no man. he’s gotta understand you have moods.
  • you’re not buying any new clothes. funk that. you love lumberjack flannel shirts.
  • you know the truth that no one else will ever admit: most, if not all, white men just don’t like black women!!!!

Sorry. You’re gonna have to make changes, but let’s ease into it.

Let me roll out some things here that you might want to think about, but don’t over think about.

  • How often and how long do you make eye contact with an attractive (in your eyes) man? Long, short, blink and gone?
  • Do you smile and say hello first? If he doesn’t respond, do you think you weren’t loud enough or that the dude probably hates black women and you swear you’ll never to do it again?
  • Do you believe men know what you’re thinking?
  • Do you assume you know what men are thinking when they look at you? Are your thoughts negative, neutral, or positive?
  • Are you able to have a conversation without uttering one negative word or thought? That one might not be easy.
  • How’s your body language? Closed or open? Arms folded a lot? Do you lean towards the person or away?
  • Do you shy away or hide from men? It’s possible you’re doing it subconsciously.
  • Ever went to a party / gathering and decided to touch every guy when crossing the room? You know, just a light caress down the arm. If you’re feeling bold, turn your head, smile, and look ‘em up and down… Practice makes perfect.
  • Online dating is hit and miss: stop joining sites where 98.23% of the white guys will date anybody, even other men, but a black woman. Seek out the interracial sites, the men are half-way there and willing. That makes sense, right?
  • Relax. Relax. Relax. Flirt. Flirt. Flirt.
  • Get in the habit of making friends with white men. Friends. Friends. Friends. With no benefits. Keep it platonic.

I have more bad news for you.

There is no magical interracial swirl fairy. You’re gonna have to get a man the old-fashioned way: chase him down and collar him. To chase a man means being coy, witty, friendly, feminine, and slightly seductive. That takes practice.

Have fun.

*According to Wikipedia, Devil’s Advocate is:

In common parlance, a devil’s advocate is someone who, given a certain argument, takes a position he or she does not necessarily agree with, just for the sake of argument. In taking such position, the individual taking on the devil’s advocate role seeks to engage others in an argumentative discussion process. The purpose of such process is typically to test the quality of the original argument and identify weaknesses in its structure, and to use such information to either improve or abandon the original, opposing position.
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