In a recent article for Essence.com, The Write or Die Chick voices her support for Harry Belafonte’s stance regarding a dearth of activism among black celebs and younger generations in general. The piece particularly takes black women to task for their strides (or lack thereof) to take up the mantel of foremothers like Dorothy Height and Coretta Scott King:
There are plenty of women who volunteer for, evangelize and perpetuate the same rabble-rousing agenda that our grandmothers and mothers in activism did decades ago. They exist. They care. They do the work. You probably have some in your community because they pop up on the news from time to time and are the face of making things right in the modern-day. I’m not saying they don’t exist at all. Just not on the scale and magnitude that they used and need to.
While the look, shape, and scope of black women’s activism may have changed, it seems disingenuous, if not inaccurate, to argue that the scale and magnitude have downsized. Perhaps we make a mistake when we expect activism to be highly visible or publicized.
I don’t believe in fashion rules. Fashion is too subjective for the generalizing that comes with rule-making. We may all be exposed to current trends and shop at similar stores but fashion is an expression of one’s singular style. A woman’s fashion sense, body type, personality and lifestyle all impact the type of clothes she wears. We’re all too different for fashion rules to apply to everyone.
That’s why it was distressing to see people chide Jada Pinkett-Smith for posing in a bikini for a Facebook picture. The caption read ” To my Forty and over crew! Don’t believe the hype…we DO get better with age! ” and small minds immediately took to the comment section to chide her for wearing a bikini over 40.
I know this probably won’t be a well-received article. The Varied Complexions of Black People is a guaranteed push-button topic, and too many writers have exploited the issue for hits. I hate that this will likely be taken in that context, but I assure you, that’s not what I’m up to.
Hear me out to the end.
When I caught wind of Eric Benét’s latest single “Redbone Girl,” my first thought was “oh, #$%^!” I wasn’t excited; I was loathing the term for the description of light-complexioned women and more so, the comments sections of multiple sites that would inevitably explode with vitriol and knife-twisting in never fully healed wounds. No one man should have so much power.
We’ve all experienced our fair share of unwanted and offensive commentary about our complexions. We say the comments don’t matter and that we’re so over it, but our reactions show otherwise. The emotional trauma, whether you’re 27 light, 1B dark, or a middle shade like 6 brown, all sticks like balls of track glue. What I want to suggest to you here is there is no outdoing each other in the pain category.
A dark girl encounters ignorance about her complexion? Yeah, so does a light girl. It would be nice if she could get a little empathy and understanding, too. Pain is just, well, painful, period. Who’s Hurt More isn’t part of the upcoming Olympics, and the re-telling of emotional battle scars shouldn’t be a competition.
No network show before or since UPN/CW’s “Girlfriends” has been as instrumental in diversifying the way audiences viewed contemporary black women. If “Living Single” opened the door for new representations, urging America to realize our range of personal styles, shapes, sizes, and libidos, “Girlfriends” knocked that door off its hinges. It left few risqué topics unturned, from chlamydia and HIV to mental illness, emotional infidelity, and cross-cultural adoption.
Everyone could identify with one of primary characters in one way or another. But here’s your chance to find out which of the women most closely resembles you. Take the quiz to find out.
1. You’ve been seeing a new guy, but he only answers his phone between the hours of noon and 1 p.m. or 12 a.m. and 4 a.m. What do you do?
A. Pretend this isn’t a problem while spending every waking hour obsessing over it and asking friends for advice.
B. Recognize the behavior for what it is: a married man booty-call tactic.
C. “Do?” How is this a problem? You hate being tied down and are totally seeing a few other people. Seems like a win-win to you.
D. Loudly confront him in a public place. Be sure to call him nasty. And a heathen.
“Sunscreen? I don’t need that!” Unfortunately, this is a myth many women of color still believe today. Although it is assumed darker pigments are immune to the harmful UV rays of the sun, this is only partially true, as we’ve reported before. Here are three reasons everyone should use SPF.1. Helps Prevent Skin Cancer
While more melanin offers some protection, it is not merely enough to shield us from skin cancer. There are three types of skin cancer: squamous cell carcinomas, basal cell carcinomas, and malignant melanoma. Basal cell carcinomas and malignant melanoma are more commonly found in people of color, with the latter being the most fatal. Malignant melanoma is considered to be the scariest because not only does it spread quickly to other parts of the body, but it can also start on areas that are not highly exposed to the sun (i.e., feet and nails). If caught in the early stages, it can be cured, but unfortunately it is commonly misdiagnosed. It is imperative to pay attention and know your body.