Saturday, March 27, 2010

Jill Scott on Black women feeling stung by Interracial Relationships: Part 1

People have taken to the blogosphere to discuss Jill Scott's recent commentary in Essence Magazine about what she describes as a "wince" or a "sting" that Black women feel, particularly herself when they see, hear or realize that a successful Black man is married to a White woman. There are a number of comments in agreement and there are many comments of disdain and finger pointing. I find that interesting.

For Black women, admitting that you may wince when you see a Black man with a Black woman is like admitting that you have peed in the pool before. Some will condemn you and scream "you're nasty !" but I would be hard pressed to find someone that has never peed in the pool before.

Many are calling her racist and that what she says is disgusting (kind like peeing in the pool right?). Many of them are Black. What's surprising is just how many are "SO disgusted". It's common knowledge within the Black community that Black women harbor this sentiment. It's a topic at comedy shows. My White girlfriends have all experienced the fiery stares of Black women as they walk hand-in-hand with their Black male partners. So if this is news to you, trust me you are of the last to know.

Jill explains that Black women and men in American history weren't valued, suffered a harsh existence and struggled together. They were a team.
[...] what we really feel when we see a seemingly together brother with a Caucasian woman and their children. That feeling is betrayed. we exert efforts to raise our sons and daughters to appreciate themselves and respect others, most of us end up doing this important work alone, with no fathers or like representatives, limited financial support (often court-enforced) and, on top of everything else, an empty bed. It's frustrating and it hurts!

She forgets to mention how that wince rarely occurs when the situation is reversed. I literally have to hold myself back from running up and giving a Black woman a high five when I see her married to a "seemingly together" White man. Furthermore, Black women complain about the number of homosexual Black men just as often as they do about Black men dating White women. It isn't just about race, it is also about the numbers.

Black women outnumber Black men. Period. If you are by chance selective and would like a Black man say, without criminal record, to be a college grad, heterosexual AND gainfully employed you have reduced that number drastically----- Not considering whether the two of you have chemistry or if he is even nice to you. If you want him to have good credit and no prior children well--you are looking at my man and you need to back off!! (Kidding. I'm just kidding.)

To better illustrate I will relax the issue of race. As a child of African immigrants my parents pressured me to marry within our culture, common to many first generation Americans. If Black men are hard to find imagine restricting yourself to a subset of them. Finding a "successful" one was not as difficult (immigrant parents usually push their kids really hard) as was finding a nice one. "Successful" Black man? That's a collectors item! He's holding out for the highest bidder and you-member of a subset of Black women-don't even have a paddle to make a bid with. Of the Black American men I know with my cultural background, I don't know ONE that married within their culture. I'm sure there are some but the fact that I don't know of any speaks volumes. You wait for him though that effort is not reciprocated. I know plenty of well-educated women (and their parents) still waiting for their 0.0000019% chance. That is betrayal.

Are we justified? This is where I depart from Jill Scott and explain in Part 2.
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