On a lot of bwe blogs many black women love to talk about the GAT-DL or Guarders of all things dark and lovely. Meaning they are a brigade of (usually) black women (and men sometimes) who feel the need to defend ANYTHING that has do with black people even to the detriment to themselves. In the BWE world the GAT-DL are mocked for the way they without fail feel the need to “white knight” for black folk. What I’ve noticed is that while the GAT-DL are told to take a seat, because BWE women can think for themselves the PDOBV- (proud defenders of boob and vag) are always out in full force. Further these women are lauded by some even when they aren’t saying anything valuable.
If you’d like to identify the PDOBV, look for any woman who calls themselves “progressive” or “liberal” look for the women who voted for Barak Obama simply because he had such *great* plans for women. (And these women never talk about the faults of Barak Obama.. *gasp* there are some) And if they didn’t support Barak Obama with all the fanboy techniques of the same women on Jezebel, chances are in some other way, they are always peddling… ahem, talking about the benefits of feminism. (Which usually goes only so far as birth control and abortion and they never take black women’s unique circumstances into account when they mention these policies) But the easiest way to identify the PDOBV is by looking at their hobbies. One of their favorite past times is to disparage anyone who doesn’t support feminism with the full recklessness and abandon as they would. For any woman who chooses to “opt out” the PDOBV loves to join the ranks of white feminists in the shame game
This is especially true for black women who are not only guilted but pressured and lied to until they are beaten into the feminist submission mold. ( I don’t ever here these PODBV trying to rally and guilt the masses of white women into feminism, and *gasp* there ARE white women who don’t identify with feminism.
Usually the conversations that take place between the PODBV and black women they are trying to convert always likes to glance at the history between black women and white women, but then quickly the conversation quickly comes back to how black women have shunned white women who have “given so many efforts to expand their sisterhood” *sarcasm off* while ignoring the pure racism that lies dormant within feminist society.
Let’s take a look at the article in question. Who is obviously a great example of the PDOBV The author *surprisingly a black woman* states right off the bat,
Black women can’t stand white women. That’s really the crux of the matter and that is the primary reason why more black women don’t call themselves feminists—because black women and white women have an extremely difficult time working with each other. Anything that has even a whiff of white women on it will receive an almost visceral rejection by black women, because black women feel that if white women are involved, then it—whatever “it” happens to be—must surely be hostile to black women.
And, let’s be honest: Historically, white feminist women are returning the favor. White feminists have not been anywhere near as inclusive towards black women, or as understanding of the viewpoints of black women, as they could have been.
First off she attacks black women, using phrases like “can’t stand” to oversimplify relations. As if the reason why black women DON’T support feminists is because black women are wary of white feminists because of 400 years ago. She probably thinks if she oversimplifies things and brushes things under the carpet black women will be more malleable?
Let’s look at the real reasons that black women can’t, don’t, or won’t support feminism
- White feminists from the very beginning didn’t actually want black women in “their movement”. Despite women like Sojourner Truth who was writing “Ain’t I a woman at the same time.” Early white feminists didn’t want black women in their movement because they didn’t want to talk about race (and their racial privilege ) in relation to sexism. They wanted their separate movement (but for black women it’s intersected) They didn’t want the power of “their” movement diluted by talk about race. (Susan B Anthony, if I’m not mistaken is one of them.) Further for the women that did work with blacks it was more often than not with black MEN and not black women.
- White feminists have benefited from racism and it is uncomfortable to have to be aware of this. This is why you can go on any “progressive” feminist website and not only are the women dismissive of black women’s unique problems they can be down right racist.
- The things that white women and black women want, because they are on opposities sides of the spectrum
- White feminists not only enjoy privileges based on race they also not only watch but participate in the degradation of black women.
- White feminism only involves talking about how racist/ sexist/ terrible / white men are ( and its always white men, because of course black men CAN”T be colorist, sexist etc.) While these women now sympathize with the same black men who are making black women’s life a living nightmare. Basically black women got tired of Dead beat black man apologizers and would rather not spend their time memorizing ever supposed infraction white men do (and again its always ONLY white men who can be racist/ sexist) and got tired of having to brush away the racism of white WOMEN.
- White feminism directly goes against what would be beneficial to other women of color. For example trying to make “prostitution safe and legal” even though the majority of women who are prostitutes are women of color, poor, and NOT doing it by choice. They completely look over the women suffering for the happiness of a few instead of trying to find solutions to being poor and being forced into that lifestyle.
- White feminism continues to ignore the black women who actually do show up.
To simplify black women and white women’s relations in feminism as black women “not being able to stand” black women is completely smug and glib.
This author also sites Kassandra Perkins murder, and says that,
“Feminism provides a framework from which to understand the widespread violence used against black women to both exploit them, punish them, and to keep them in their place. Feminism from a black female perspective tackles the issue of the disintegration of the family in black communities and the effect that disintegration has had on black women. Feminism gives black women a theory (multiple theories, actually) to hang her hat on in an attempt to understand why lower class black people behave in certain ways and why black men and women have so many problems relating to one another.”
I find this funny that the author was sighting how feminism helps black women understand violence and domestic abuse. Its actually ironic because many feminists didn’t even think this was a “domestic violence issue” but decided to turn it to the greater conversation about “gun violence.”
Indeed this is another sad display by a black woman who is trying desperately to enjoy the benefits that white feminists get although most of the time they do not receive actual support in real life. Because when it comes to black women and feminism, there is always a bigger issue.
Further the author says,
“Can black women and white feminists agree on anything?
Many Black women are jealous and envious of white women. Whereas white feminists were angry and resentful about the limitations that patriarchy put upon them while simultaneously holding them up as the ideal of womanhood, black women were wishing that they could be up on that pedestal instead of cooking and cleaning as a domestic in the homes of white families. According to black women, white women actually had a good deal but they were too privileged to appreciate it. When white women were talking about wanting to go to work, they were thinking about professional careers which would allow them the full expression of their creative faculties—to many black women, work meant menial, rote labor which kept then away from their families and away from the care and upkeep of their homes. Viewed from these opposing perspectives, it is understandable why lower and working-class black women were not as vocally supportive as the average white woman of calls to enter the workforce and leave the home, especially when many black women were already in the workforce and not happy about it.”
This woman yet again likes to simplify black women’s supposed no support of feminism (although again this isn’t even true) to simple jealousy. Instead her sentence could read like this.
“Black women were pressured to join feminism and the call to work outside of the home (even though they’d had no choice but to do it all along). In actuality because of racism and a number of other intersecting factors these women, even if they chose to work outside of the home, or were welcome in feminism would have still been assigned to the menial roles. Further because of racism black women would not ,and in a large portion, have not been able to enjoy the benefits of working outside of the home in “creative “jobs.”
Let’s not twist history. That pisses me off. Instead let’s be honest about the fact, as I’ve said before that black women CAN not fully benefit from feminism fully because they are BLACK. No matter how condescending the author is that fact is inescapable.
To further her own stupidity she says later,
“Disagreement on one issue, such as fat positivity, does not mean that black women should reject feminism wholesale. There is no contract stating that in order to be a feminist you have to be fat positive”
Bitch Magazine declined to publish an interview with Caitin Moran after Moran gave a series of what some felt were racially insensitive replies to a twitter user. Feminist writer Jessica Valenti gave a nod to the importance that women of color assign to the role of motherhood and to how women of color view their status as “mother” in a different light than many middle-class white women.
Let’s not pretend that the disagreement that black women have with feminism can be condensed to one issue. Especially in modern feminism. But even if it was only one issue that there was disagreement on, it is too major to not create opposing factions. Further, just because one feminist author (who I personally can’t stand btw) gives a “nod” ,after 50+ years of feminists ignoring black women’s thoughts and now finally surrendering the point, lets not pretend this is some great feat. If it took fifty years to get a “nod”from one hack feminist btw, on the importance of motherhood how long do you think it will take white feminists to actually call out black ( c )rapper misogynists instead of giving them a pass because “they’re oppressed too”?
She then hammers home her points by saying.
Many white feminists are now attempting to join hands across class and racial boundaries in support of the creation of a liberal welfare state, such a state would undoubtedly greatly benefit poor black mothers who need all of the help they can get. Here is where I think the dissention between black women and white feminists comes in.
Black women want husbands not just to help raise children and elevate the family out of poverty, but because most black women are heterosexual they always want a relationship with a man for companionship and comfort reasons.
In other words, too many feminists are failing to grasp the desires and wishes of black women because said white women lived a different experience. Black women and white women are talking past each other—again.
Again let’s not simplify things. It is not “talking past” is two groups that want completely different things. And that is alright. But lets not try and guilt black women to spend their lives trying to find a way to agree with feminists instead of going after their own dreams. Not only is it not possible for black women to really benefit if their was agreement but it gets in the way of black women enjoying themselves.
Secondly I find it is also a pure lie that white feminists are putting out the hand for black women and black women are, with usual jezebel bitterness shunning them. Instead what I see are white feminists who create conversations that surround themselves and their own experiences and then decide when they are going to “grant” black feminists a voice. Further any conversation that involves black women quickly becomes a bigger issue that white women turn into their own unique issue and somehow black women get pushed out of the way. (see conversations on street harassment. I hear many women speak that when they went to india they were the only one’s who were harassed because they were “soooo fair” (as if black women weren’t harassed daily.)
What is a global woman’s issue turns into a white issue and black women get their voices silenced.
Her final point is:
“ History will always be written by those who bothered to show up. The agenda will always be set by those who attend the meeting. And by black women’s continual rejection of both their invitation to attend the feminist meeting, they are accepting the continued marginalization of black women’s needs and interests both within the feminist movement and within the world at large
And yet, feminism the movement and feminists the people are not perfect. There is room for tremendous growth within the feminist movement and the voices of black women with different viewpoints are appreciated and needed. If black women want to be understood then they must speak up.”
This paragraph should read like this.
“History will always be written by those who have the privilege. Indeed, the ones who have privilege are the ones who even get to show up in the first place. The agenda will always be set by those who have the privilege to put their issues in the front and ignore all the others. “
It is accepting marginalization to continue to work with an “organization” that has proven it neither works nor cares about the lives of black women. It is demented to keep banging your head on a concrete wall.
Further there is no room for further growth in feminism because it has been proven by many black women that intersectionality keeps black women from being heard or benefiting from feminism. Black women need to STOP waiting around for white women to make choices.”
Finally these PDOBV are never on board with black men who say similar things. Imagine if a black man told this black woman that the only way to benefit as a black person would be to align themselves with black men and that black men have always wanted to work with black women (even though sexism clearly proves otherwise) and that black women are just bitter. This woman and many other PDOBV would have a conniption fit. So I can’t help scratching my head that this black women had the nerve to insult black women who have desperately been trying and failing to get a feminist voice as if they were never there or as if white feminists A) created feminism or B) black women are just being difficult.
Women like this are similar to the same people who now want to live in a “color blind” society and say that black people , or other people of color are being racist for even brining up race. As if blacks were born in their own racist vacuum or had the privilege of ignoring race.
For black women to fully join feminism they would have to not acknowledge their blackness (which I’ve said before is impossible) because to do otherwise in this community is “divisive”. Women like this just don’t see that white feminists can NEVER be fully equal to white men if they don’t hold on to BOTH race and sex privilege. Most women won’t give that up for some misguided attempt at sisterhood. What will be sad though is when this woman’s house of cards falls she’s going to wonder what went wrong.