Why Don't We Care about Black Women?
Originally when I sat down today I was going to write a very long blog post surrounding the Women’s March, White Feminism, and ultimately some solutions both short term and long term to fix the issues within. I’ve made some posts about it, and today while talking to a close friend I realized “Nope, this needs to be an official blog post.”
I sat down to write, and it hit me like a wave for not the first or second time, but for what feels like the hundredth. America, regardless of gender or race, does not care about the black woman. This includes you too, black men.
I can’t tell you how devastating that is for me or any black woman.
We were there in Black Panther meetings, in fact we lead them. We were the main ones to organize Black Lives Matter as both an organization and as a movement. We show up for ourselves and for others non-stop. It even started reinforcing another dangerous narrative that black women will save us.
Why is it America is so happy to say that black women will save us, but they aren’t happy to stand up for us or listen to our voices?
Why is it the minute we have something to say, we’re angry? Why is it people want to love our music, our art, and what we have to give but they don’t want to love us?
Every day I have to field interactions with people, knowing full well systematically how low on the totem pole I am and gauging my interactions based off of that. I have to rethink every negative situation knowing the racial and gender-based layers that apply or that I feel like apply (and sometimes they don’t).
When a white woman speaks up and uses her voice to talk about injustice she’s regarded as an icon automatically. Yes, she will and can face issues as well from using her voice especially on topics such as rape and sexual harassment. That is not an unknown factor and that is something I’m aware of. However, when compared to a black woman, or any woman of color, there’s that extra layer of stereotypes and invalidation that we go through, sometimes even at the helm of white women.
Every day I log on Facebook or I listen to conversations, I have to listen to men degrading black woman. I hear black men talking in earnest about how happy they are that they don’t date black women. I see how white women co-opt our styles and when they’re called out they act like the victim. I see non-black fragility when being called out. I see gaslighting and people trying to make black women seem like we’re the crazy irrational ones.
I see them saying everything that they possibly can about black women except for acknowledging the fact that we are human too. I see them saying everything except for how we have constantly showed up and yet we are constantly neglected.
I sincerely feel like the only people who care about black women are black women. We got us, but no one else does no matter how much they claim to.
I don’t care about how many times you scream #blacklivesmatter. I don’t care if you say #sayhername. I don’t care if you can rap Nicki Minaj’s verses better than anyone else.
You can rep black women without repping black women, and that’s the problem.