Smile When you say that!: The Multi Cultural Edition


(Accept this picture of a rabbit since I had nothing else suitable)


Note: I don’t do disclaimers, but I will give warnings. This post will probably offend some, who don’t know who and what I’ve been promoting from the very start of this blog. For those who don’t know, this blog is for women of African American descent. I did not create this blog to reach black women all over the world; I didn’t write this in the hopes of helping everyone. That is above my scope and impossible. If you are not an African American woman and you have a problem with posts that focus and put this group of women first, then I suggest you leave or create your own blog that focuses on YOUR specific interests because this blog is what it is.



On to the post,

I have noticed a growing demand for “Fair, and “inclusive” behavior by the thought police, who believe that African American women aren’t doing enough. These “well meaning” people believe that African American women simply need to be doing more. These people think that African American black women should change their behavior in certain ways to suit certain groups of people in the many different ways.

If you don’t know what I’m talking about, if I’m not being absolutely clear, I’m noticing the very troubling idea being thrown around in the general world where African American black women need to foolishly, and mulishly support any other black person across the planet whether or not these groups of blacks ever actually reciprocate the mulish giving that black women do to other groups.

For those who didn’t read the post before the last one, the comments section was positively rife with people who couldn’t seem to grasp the concept that African American black women are a group of women that have their own unique thoughts, ideas, hopes, dream, and do NOT exist solely to give every other person a “ leg up” at the expense of themselves. This sort of behavior (and it isn’t just the misguided people in my comments section, who have a problem with this) has come from many biracial people, “ people of color” , white women and white men (usually people who identify as “ fair” and “ liberal” who believe that black women are being selfish and/or “ backwards” because the put the thoughts of themselves first and foremost.

For black women who bite this bullet and believe the social pressure to screw themselves into a wall, this is a problem for many reasons:

  • This expected and undeserved behavior is supposed to be the RULE for certain groups while for everyone else it’s the EXCEPTION.
  • This behavior is only focused on African American black women and isn’t supported or recognized anywhere else.
  • This behavior largely doesn’t benefit African American Black women
  • This behavior is not RECIPROCATED
  • This group doesn’t benefit (Yes I said this twice).
  • This behavior has resulted in African American women largely being dismissed ad erased because certain groups refuse to acknowledge a difference in lifestyle and privileges that African American black women simply LACK.
  • Most importantly this obligation FORCES African American women out of a NEUTRAL stance, and pushes them into things that could potentially be detrimental.

I have noticed that when African American women speak, think, exist, without asking for the permission of people who believe they should automatically be allowed into this group, there is a large amount of dissent and anger. Usually this comes from Blacks of foreign countries, who believe African American women should recognize them as some sort of comrade, biracial African Americans who believe they should be able to speak FOR African American black women who are NOT BIRACIAL or liberal white Americans who love to speak about being “ progressive” .

As with most people who live ideology instead of reality (as many BWE writers have spoken about) this behavior thrust upon AA BW is the RULE for black women but the exception for these groups. AA black women are as a rule expected to push aside their issues for foreigners and people of multi cultural descent and allow these people to speak as if they are the default for African American black women.

Case in point, the issue on this blog last year when I suggested that AA BW start their own media projects. Some “special snowflake” Canadian black women had a problem with this suggestion and thought it was over the top and got ANGRY and couldn’t fathom that AA BW might find this an appropriate solution.

Or there were the commenters having an issue with AA BW who didn’t want to blindly support an African-Mexican actress who has no ties to the US or US BW and were upset that AA BW weren’t handing out “ free Costco membership badges” to women we don’t know or recognize or don’t share a history with.

Or I could name plenty of liberal (usually “ feminist” ) white women who can’t understand why having biracial black women represent FULL blooded black women results in the erasure of darker skinned black women.

Funnily enough these people, in these groups who call for these rules are usually the ones that have the biggest issues with giving up their own privileges, or DIDN’T have to begin with. OR THEY HAVE SOMETHING TO GAIN by pressuring aa bw to do so.
For example, if bi racial black women get to represent ALL black women in the media, all the roles go to the Zoe Saldana’s the Halle Berry’s and the Mariah Carey’s and LUPITA NYONGO’s who get to SET THE STANDARD.

When I hear white American’s (and usually sanctimonious white feminists) talk about “what’s the big deal” it’s from people who don’t have to SHARE THEIR characterizations with other groups. If you notice white people in Hollywood are played by white people in Hollywood. Not blacks and certainly not BLACK WOMEN. Hell there are more than enough roles for white women why don’t they give up some?

Someone in the comments section brought up Steve McQueen a British Black man making an AA slave movie, to which a commenter replied that AA’s do it all the time so it shouldn’t be an issue.

And yet the difference, the fault in that logic that I’m not sure if most noticed was that McQueen didn’t take his movie to BRITAIN. He came to AMERICA hired almost ALL non American actors for an African American story, and then wanted AFRICAN AMERICAN people to support him.

In the reverse I highly doubt if I went to Nollywood, Bollywood, or Anywhere in the world with black people, tried to REPRESENT THEM, without REPRESENTING THEM, and had an issue when people said WTF, I would be told to GTFOWB. What people also didn’t notice was that these people aren’t in THEIR OWN countries making stories that they find interesting that happen to be about other cultures like the AA’s that did the nelson Mandela story, and was designed for AA audiences, instead McQueen and came to AMERICA for AA support.

I’ve also noticed that this behavior, to let everyone else have “free membership” and recognition is largely not beneficial to AA black women, not only do these groups have their own PRIVILEGES that they refuse to acknowledge or put aside, they step on the backs of black women and their wallets to get where they want to go before, moving on to bigger and better things all in the name of diversity, meanwhile African American women have their issues ignored.

See Zoe Saldana recognizing her blackness when it’s time to sell movies and then when it’s time to acknowledge her privilege, telling AA black women their simply complaining. (Look it up)

Because ultimately the support isn’t going to be reciprocated, it can’t be reciprocated and have her be able to KEEP the privilege that got her the roles in the first place.

Meanwhile, as black women allow any and every Lupita Nyongo to represent all African American black women, there has been a large shift in what people believe AA black women look like. Turn on any tv show, and the majority of the African American black women are NOT played by AA black women, they are played by foreigners, bi-racial black women, and women who are not black at all but qualify as “women of color” Which wouldn’t be an issue if they were representing their own cultures or playing someone who is Biracial. Instead there is the “new’ black woman which means she’s not very black at all. Or she if she is, she’s the weave wearing, neck swerving, wig snatching black woman, which ironically these same groups want to avoid being characterized as.

I think many groups have convinced AA BW they are #winning and being NICE because they recognize these groups meanwhile once the guilt and dust have settled AA bw have yet again zilch. Though nobody wants to admit that.

Because while everyone is claiming that these victories are for “all black women around the world” the winnings and the resources and the MOVIE ROLES leave AA BW for good. But remember the trick is to make you think that everything has changed when really it hadn’t moved and inch.  (To knew readers, Please read my BWiF Series)

These groups who are largely *cough* white America *cough* push this inclusivity on AA BW so they won’t have to give up THEIR racist privilege have little or nothing to say until THEIR privileges are threatened.

Here’s a question to my readers, IF being bi racial makes you white and black, why do you think CERTAIN groups of white people ONLY want biracial people to identify as BLACK characters. Why do you think they are only allowed to play AA people? (and it isn’t for bi racial people’s benefit to be locked out of the other half of their heritage) Shouldn’t these same biracial people technically be able to play WHITE WOMEN by their logic, Since we’re all people? Shouldn’t I? And if we’re all people how come that works when people want to propel themselves from the backs of AA black women and not in the reverse?

I’ll give you a hint.

As one commenter said:

When WP don’t like the rules, they do
what they’ve always done…Change Them!
Lol..whose gonna stop them?


Why give up their privileges when they have dumb AA black women to do it? It’s simple really, because they know many black women aren’t going to CRITICALLY THINK about where their money and support is going.

And that’s the worst fact of all.


Until Next Time…

Ps. This post is part of a Series,

Next Post in Series,

The girl Who believed Anything!



Note: This post had two other “editions”


* images don’t belong to me


127 thoughts on “Smile When you say that!: The Multi Cultural Edition

  1. I think that when some folks hear reciprocity, they take it as applying to everybody but themselves. I see no issue with AA women wanting reciprocity (even from non-AA BW). The rules don’t change (or at least, they shouldn’t) just because someone is black. I noticed how a lot of people in the entertainment industry try to ‘escape’ their blackness, but do it subtly. They would make every effort to let everybody know that they are not AA, but a ‘different’ kind of black. That is what turned me off Gina Torres some years ago, when she was a bit too eager for my tastes to mention that she was Hispanic, as if one couldn’t tell from her name. I could tell that was her way of trying to ‘un-blacken’ herself in, let’s be frank here, white folks eyes. I’m not AA, yet it irritated me because it was quite clear what she was doing and why she was doing it. I would note that I’m yet to ever see her play a ‘Black Hispanic’ character, mainly because these folks from there aren’t interested in casting her black behind in any of their productions, so she is happy to play AA characters, while telling everybody that she isn’t AA! I call bull on that.

    I also remember one of Khadija’s posts from years ago where she was talking about ethnic and racial self respect. I remember that she used the example of Sammy Sosa (sp?) the former baseball player. I think what many Black folks do, and I see it most commonly amongst AA’s, is that because another black person is (or appears to be) proud of their own ethnicity, they take it to mean that that person would be happy to have solidarity with all black folks, even when said person is expressing disdain for black folks of a different ethnicity (e.g, in the recent story of the young man who was accepted into all Ivy league schools, there was a widely read article written by a man of, I think, Ghanaian ancestry. It wasn’t enough to praise this young man’s achievements. He had to throw in a line where he said something like: “He is not just some African American boy off the street”. He made a point of emphasising that this boy was NOT AA. Some silly folks would have read that and missed it, just assuming that this was one bm praising the achievements of another young bm.

    I’ll admit that I wasn’t 100% on it when Khadija (and you here as well), first brought up the issue with Lupita’s casting, mainly because I couldn’t see what she was supposed to have done, as it was her first movie, so she had no clout/pull, to really influence things for her or anyone else’s benefit, etc. I’m not Kenyan, and my reaction would have been the same whoever was cast in that role. I’m relieved whenever I see a BW in the media who is putting forward a good image. However, I think it was when she posted about a new MLK biopic, in which one Black British actor (who, I should mention, has form when it comes to saying rubbish about BW) and a mixed-race British actress were cast to play MLK and Coretta, that I realised that it really was becoming a ‘thing’. The production company behind it are the same folks that were behind ’12 years a slave’, and also the film in which a white actress was cast to play a mixed-race woman. This is a film that is being made in America, yet this film-maker (who, from what I can tell, is also AA), decided to ‘go abroad’ to cast the leads. Even though it’s a film that would have the most appeal to an American audience. It really males no sense!

    In the post before the last one, I think some people chose to interpret it as ‘don’t support any film that casts a non-AA woman’, when what was being said was determine how this benefits you/doesn’t benefit you, before you offer knee-jerk support. It was telling that when a simple question of ‘how does this benefit me?’ was asked, some people decided to throw their toys out of the pram. It reminded me of some years ago when the conversation moved from stop letting BM use you/your time/resources without giving anything back to not letting anybody use you without reciprocity, many of the women who were all for it all of a sudden decided that it was ‘harsh’. They realised that it also meant that BW wouldn’t be muling for other BW (them) as well. I guess most folks forget their principles/arguments when it means that they might lose their golden egg. And let’s be real here: if you weren’t trying to gain without giving anything in return, you wouldn’t have an issue with talk of reciprocity.

    • Totally agree with your comment, I am also a non AA woman but this just seems like basic social justice. I don’t understand why ANY black woman would support the exploitation of other black women understanding what women have gone through in the past. It isn’t moving anything forward. I also thought it was good when Lupita became famous though I wondered why an AA woman wasn’t cast, hearing about the production company and how this type of casting is becoming a trend is worrying. It doesn’t make sense for AA women to erase themselves for non-AA black women or biracial women.

      In what world does it make sense for Zoe Saldana to play Nina Simone?!?!? I mean Viola Davis is right there RIGHT THERE.

  2. Wonderful article and truthful. Black American women history in this county is very important, I find it amusing that non-black American women will come to this nation moaning and whining about Black American women. I recall a conversation I had with a Nigerian woman, who gave birth to a child in this country. The first word out of her mouth, regarding this child. “She is Black American” I burst this person bubble by telling her. “Your child is not Black American and that she is Nigerian American” She cried foul, and I told her that I do not like for anyone to steal my cultural heritage and my place in history. This is the same person who stated to me “I was not Black American because my hair and eyes are black” I believe in the value system, basically I will not support anyone who will try to deny who and what I am.

    • I don’t see how her child won’t be “Black American” so it looks like you’re just splitting hairs to desperately hold on to what you perceive as some time of meaning in your personal struggle. Not all African women look down on you, nor are they out to get you. I don’t understand this hoopla about African women, since many African women (Your ancestors/ mothers in case you have forgotten) at the face of it, have had to go through discrimination, colourism and erasure as well.

      • I can speak on it. I work with Nigerians, one woman in particular who loves to play games with AA people. She is supportive when it serves her needs. I am not mad with her; however, do not use up what little resources I have to benefit you and when it is my time…Oh, sorry I do not have any thing or she might throw you a bone she did not want…this behavior is so similar to colonial white behavior. And, no I am not referencing all.

      • @Tobi, Your opinion is not important to me. As I stated before my value system does not include people who want to used and abuse my status. You are desperate in trying to chance the direction of my message.

      • Tobi, not all Nigerians are asses. However, I will not be fooled into thinking they all love AA people, because they don’t. It is just that simple.

  3. I have seen where many foreign blacks come over here and gauge the time and money from black women and then when there house is in order, see ya,
    The bible says ” a man foes is that of his own household”. Hollywood is telling you that we only want foreign black because they would be a little more compliant. That is why One Less Soldier is sounding the alarm to let Black Women know that we have a new enemy in the form of the X chromosome. The black man hold card has been exposed and is continuing being exposed.
    But our new enemy is the foreign blacks because they studied us and know that we are so desperate for attention that any black face means progress and they know that blacks on a collective level don’t do critical thinking, they know, the foreign black, that we will settle for crumbs because we have not done the real work on working on our collective. You have next month the part 2 movie by Steve Harvey coming out and I hope black women do something else with their money like going somewhere to meet other groups of healthy non-black men because the movie has Gabrielle Union, Kevin Hart and Micheal Ealy who have shown not only are they damaged beyond repair, they lack respect for black women. Yeah, Gabrielle Union is a female who is DBR because she would rather have diseased significant other rather than utilize her options because she is exposed to non-black men due to her profession. She is proof that not everyone who has a degree is not necessarily wise. Black women , the more we put ourselves first and foremost, we will have not only money in our pocket to do the things to make us happy, but we will display a piece of mind that many doors will start to open us for us. We will call the shots and have a brand new image that we were the catalyst and not someone else planning our lives. WE WILL CALL THE SHOTS!!!!!

    • While we agree on the trends, I’m gonna have to disagree with you on the cause. The Africans are not the enemy. They are not trying to steal yours, they are simply trying to get theirs. The problem is and has always been the system. The people that make the movies, that create the system, are trying to make money. They hire the Africans, Caribbean’s, Brits and whoever else, because they are most likely CHEAPER. The Africans, Carribs, Brits and whoever else, take the cheaper pay because it is more than they would make in their own countries and they retreat back to their own countries because they can live well off the currency exchange. Everyone is in it make money for THEMSELVES and the fact that AA-BW get screwed, well that’s just an added society bonus. What AA-BW need to learn to do, is STOP blindly supporting anything and everything that has black people in it (Including OTHER AA-BW!) and look towards making that paper for THEMSELVES. Between the UK and the US, I know a total of 17 Kenyans … and ONLY 5 of them, FIVE total!… went to see Lupita Nyoung in 12 years a slave. (yes, I polled!) and while they were proud of her, not a single one felt invested in her career or even cared AT ALL about that whole “Lupita is a fetish” scandal. AA-BW need to get that attitude and quick. AA-BM have it, have had it for years and ride off on the backs of their privilege and BW as soon as they get an opportunity. BW on the other hand, get stuck running in circles because they are too bogged down from the weight of the entire BC on their backs. I understand that Nigerians have a saying that goes: “EVERYMAN FOR HIMSELF AND GOD FOR US ALL!” It’s a creed that should go on the FIRST page of the BWE Bible…. Should one ever get written.
      and Yes, Gabrielle Union REALLY NEEDS to check herself… but she won’t because she is too busy getting paid and probably counting all the cash she will make from the divorce settlement. (ok, so that got personnal, that was my fault.)

      • Spot on! To add on, I just don’t think it’s productive to scape-goat foreign Blacks. I agree that Afr-Am women need to focus more on supporting themselves more than any group, but I don’t think tearing down Lupita–a positive image for dark-skinned Black women IN GENERAL will do anything. Sure she’s not African-American, but I appreciate her as a symbol of beauty of the natural Black women if nothing else. How can we complain about Bi-racials hi-jacking the black female image and then complain with the same mouth that African women/Authentically black women are being represented? I personally think the former is more harmful than the latter.

        • I’m curious to how you think, pointing out that AA BW don’t reap the benefits of foreign blacks is scapegoating, instead of simply pointing out the truth? Why should black women support groups they don’t benefit from? That’s simply bad business.

        • @Onelesssoldier, I agree with the overarching message of Black American Women supporting themselves; however, I don’t necessary see African women as a separate group since both groups are Black, especially we’re talking about Africans who grow up in America. Both groups have their own set backs/privilege, but given how small of a group we are and how tarnished our image is as a group I think we should stick together in our blackness and not be divisive. I’m not gonna sit here and say I won’t support Shonda Rimes or Kerry Washington because they are not African. At the end of the day they are Black women who go through virtually the same shit as me because they are black. I’m Canadian African, but I’ve never had a problem with connecting with other black women from other nations, be it Ghana, St Kitts, or Grenada. Heck, I connect a lot with your blog and I understand where you are coming from, but please your beef shouldn’t be with African women.

        • I’m not sure why you don’t understand that on the whole all the benefits, privileges and resources gained by foreign bw NEVER returns to AABW who support them. Any Victories people like Lupita Nyongo get rarely return to me, considering she is proud of her African- Nigerian? heritage and while YOU may see foreign black and aa blacks as the same the rest of the world DOES NOT. (especially when it comes to the preceptions of AA WOMEN). i also don’t understand why you believe I have a beef? Lupita Nyongo is entitled to get any resources that she can. She is entitled to play roles that she is hired for, just as I am entitled to contemplate and act accordingly to whether it will benefit ME. I don’t see how looking out for myself means I have a beef. That is simply a RIGHT.

        • @Eji & Tobi,

          Translation of your comments = African-American women are setting boundaries and you don’t like it.

          My reaction = Whatever . . . to paraphrase Karen’s question below, since when are foreign-origin blacks stakeholders in a discussion about how African American black women allocate their own resources? Enquiring minds want to know . . .”

        • There are many instance in which Afr-Am women have taken roles meant for African women (Kerry Washington, Jennifer Hudson), however it makes no difference to me. They are Black, and extension. No disrespect @Khadija and @Onelesssoldier but I’m about my Black girl/woman solidarity, It’s too much of a headache to split us apart.

        • At work, while I said Lupita is an attractive looking person. My Nigerian co-worker did not say one good or bad word about Lupita. To this day, she has not recognized Lupita good or bad. What’s up with that? Maybe Lupita is too dark for my co-worker? Maybe she wished Lupita came from her homeland instead of elsewhere?

        • Tobi by extension you benefit. The average AA woman does NOT BENEFIT. Americans know the difference between African women and African American women.
          Why the splitting? There are those who are actively working to make African woman stand out and above African American women. Go and ask them why the splitting?

        • @simplyme Please point to me where African women are getting this uplift-ment at the expense of Black American women (in the media or elsewhere). I see us getting dragged all the same. I’m dealing with issues like stereotyping, erasure and colourism like the rest of y’all.

        • @Tobi,

          You said, @simplyme Please point to me where African women are getting this uplift-ment at the expense of Black American women (in the media or elsewhere). I see us getting dragged all the same. I’m dealing with issues like stereotyping, erasure and colourism like the rest of y’all.

          Now you’re veering off into what looks like dishonesty to me. Since you claim not to see how you and other African women are getting an uplift at the expense of AA women, I’ll give a thorough response:

          Lupita (and the other African actor and the West Indian director) getting that “come up” from a movie about a historical AA person which was marketed to Americans, specifically AAs, is foreign Blacks’ upliftment at the expense of what—as far as I’m concerned—should have been an AA cast and an AA director. Carmen Ejogo and David Oyelowo being cast to play Coretta Scott King and Dr. King in a biopic about Dr. King is these two African performers’ upliftment at the expense of AA actors and actresses.

          Then there’s the silent ongoing phenomenon of the replacement of AA students with foreign Black students that I talked about during my first month of blogging in 2008. As I stated during that post:

          “There’s a story entitled, “Study: Universities prefer foreign black students” from the March 7, 2007 issue of The Daily Princetonian. Here’s the link:

          The story describes the current situation. Here’s the money quote:

          “Blacks at Ivy League schools are over three times more likely to be immigrants than blacks in America’s general population, a study published in February’s American Journal of Education and coauthored by Princeton researchers suggests. Within the United States, first and second-generation black immigrants make up 13 percent of the total black population. In contrast, data from the National Longitudinal Study of Freshmen found that international black students—either first or second-generation—made up 23 percent of blacks attending public universities and 41 percent of those attending Ivy League schools.”

          . . . Here’s another money quote from the story, “What to do with the conclusions of the study depends on admission officers’ definition of affirmative action, Massey said. ‘If the purpose of affirmative action is to redress past wrongs and redress former slaves and people victimized by a century of Jim Crow, then you want to favor native blacks perhaps,’ he said. ‘If the purpose is to reflect the diversity of American society, then you want to favor immigrant blacks.'”

          I will note that the Princeton website has since deleted that article. I suppose some facts are too hot politically to say out loud like that. I wouldn’t be surprised if a foreign-Black Princeton employee had that article deleted. Other folks don’t want AAs to pay attention to the food that’s being snatched off the plates that our AA civil rights ancestors prepared for us. Anyhoo, I found another article that’s still available talking about the same issue (which is apparently a reprint from a NYT article).

          “Top Colleges Take More Blacks, but Which Ones?”

          Here’s the money quote:

          “CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — At the most recent reunion of Harvard University’s black alumni, there was lots of pleased talk about the increase in the number of black students at Harvard.

          But the celebratory mood was broken in one forum, when some speakers brought up the thorny issue of exactly who those black students were.

          While about 8 percent, or about 530, of Harvard’s undergraduates were black, Lani Guinier, a Harvard law professor, and Henry Louis Gates Jr., the chairman of Harvard’s African and African-American studies department, pointed out that the majority of them — perhaps as many as two-thirds — were West Indian and African immigrants or their children, or to a lesser extent, children of biracial couples.

          They said that only about a third of the students were from families in which all four grandparents were born in this country, descendants of slaves. Many argue that it was students like these, disadvantaged by the legacy of Jim Crow laws, segregation and decades of racism, poverty and inferior schools, who were intended as principal beneficiaries of affirmative action in university admissions.”

          Racially Black students having widespread access (either by affirmative action or financial assistance in the form of scholarships, etc.) to these elite American universities is something that was created by the sacrifices made by African-American Black civil rights martyrs. And by sacrifices, I mean DEATHS. Deaths by murder.

          The African students (including African women students) who are reaping this benefit had nothing to do with creating this benefit. AA civil rights martyrs DIED to make access to these places possible. We died for that. You and yours didn’t.

          African students (including African women students) are reaping this benefit at the expense of AA students (including AA women students). This WILL have long-term negative consequences for the AA collective. Access to higher education has been the only way up out of poverty available to AAs.

          This is why I don’t get happy when I see news stories about this or that Black immigrant-origin student being accepted to this or that elite American university. Because it’s coming at the expense of the people—my AA people—who made these foreign Blacks’ access to these schools possible. Those admission letter, scholarships, and degrees these foreign Blacks get are written in the blood of AA civil rights martyrs.

        • @ Tobi, Did I not say I work with someone who does it. Although, she is very clever with how she does it. In America, who is dragging African women? Who? Where?

        • Also, various media types. AA women’s image is always called into question. Comedians, rappers, movies, etc. If a b/child does something wrong its poor parenting. Noticed how Asians and Caucasians will distant themselves from this latest shooter…”Oh, he is not one of us.” But, if a black person does something wrong then it falls on all of us, especially the Mother.

        • Khadija is correct. One of my coworker’s kids got a scholarship to Harvard, good for him. But, this young man’s father is a doctor. He had a good foundation to help him throughout his early school years. Not so true for many AA kids. It is true American Universities are preferring foreign b/students. No, it is not the students’ fault.

          However, while AA people are out protesting various injustices. Other minorities for the most part are staying out of the protesting business and they are more focused on obtaining an education and starting businesses, take note AA people. Why should they protest any injustice? They will benefit by default benefit from AA people’s hard work. I said this to my coworker and she said something to the fact that AA people should continue to protest but, do get your education/business straight. Really, continue protesting so more middle and upper middle class foreign blacks can easily come to America and live well.

          AAs must focus on completing their degrees and obtaining more businesses.

      • “… AA-BW get screwed, well that’s just an added society bonus.”
        For that little comment you can go screw yourself. I did not see the movie and will not view it if it was free. Enough with the slave movies. And, for my record Luipita looked liked crap in that movie.

        • ” “… AA-BW get screwed, well that’s just an added society bonus.”
          For that little comment you can go screw yourself.”
          1. REALLY? You came THAT ugly over what was a polite discussion?
          2. If YOU can not read sacarsm, go get a book and practice!
          I did not see that movie either, whats your point? My point, which is ALWAYS My point is that, AA-BW should do like everyone else does and go after their’s without feeling like they owe the world or the Community something.

      • Fine, ya’ll are right. I guess I just don’t want to be shut out of this blog because I like it so much. Well, i’ll just read from the sidelines. I apologize for being too forceful earlier

        I guess I don’t understand what it’s like to be Afr-Am despite really connecting with BWE and other blogs headed by African-American women. I consume a lot of African-American literature so I guess I forget that maybe we aren’t completely the same and African can be privileged in some ways over African-Americans. With that said, my resources will be going to black girls regardless of heritage.


        • You said peace, now go. You trying to gain pity in hopes of us saying. “Oh you’re right, we’re sorry” we know what we’re talking about. Last time I checked Africans literally threw their ancestors away. Your country sold us. So Africa is not my home. Throw us away, reap our accomplishments and claim ownership. Nope not happening, this AA woman is not falling for it. Africans want to claim AA when its beneficial for them. I’ve seen plenty of Africans look down on AA women. Yet you re-commented because you couldn’t stand the fact that AA women have set boundaries. You are slso derailing. This blog specifically talks about the AA woman experience. Onelesssoldier has blatantly stated that. Everyone else can be exclusive, but when it comes to AA womsn they want the exception. You’re looking for inclusiveness, not going to happen

      • So this division between African American women and African women is warranted because you think African-Americans are entitled to more spots in Harvard than “foreign blacks,” the rationale being that civil rights movement,which I’m guessing you’re assuming succeeded, purposefully secured those spots for African-Americans. This is utterly ridiculous and very petty. Shamelessly fighting over the white man’s elite resources is unproductive and does nothing to address the current economic problems that Blacks in general face. I don’t think MLK died so that we could beg for scraps at the White man’s table. Firstly, this is a class/attitude problem and not because people hate African Americans and like Africans more. I’m not getting into Harvard solely because I’m African but because I’m rich, supremely intelligent, have an amazing network and a sense of entitlement. Your average African or Caribbean doesn’t come here and get Harvard handed to them. Your example is made all more terrible when we consider the fact that a minuscule amount of people get in–let’s not forget that Harvard is attractive to internationals of all races.The skill of networking is a skill that the BWE sphere has conceded that Black Americans lack, ALSO the pervasiveness of self-hatred in the African-American community presents a challenge to one’s sense of entitlement, another message that is spread clearly in BWE spaces. Thus we also have to consider that maybe African-Americans lack the grandiosity to apply for a school like Harvard. I’ve never met a group of people with a bigger superiority complex than Nigerians and I say this as I Nigerian, it should be studied. So instead of complaining about threats to potential affirmative action spots, maybe you should address the social, structural and economic problems (ie. Blackistans) that impede African Americans from applying for and subsequently obtaining these spots instead of accusing Africans of stealing and not reciprocating. Instead of fighting within the “Black spots” why not fight to expand it? You’ve feel into a divisive trap with those articles that you posted and I’m not impressed.

        • Why do foreign blacks continue to debate with AA BW on how they should feel about what THEIR ancestors accomplished for THEM that these interlopers not only benefit from but show zero to no reciprocity. Since you have now revealed that you are Nigerian, would it not be better for you and yours to address the very present issues in your OWN country and make opportunities there versus lecturing US on how Affirmative Action has benefited YOU.

          Since you feel these “Black spots” and access to these elite American universities (not just Harvard), are “petty,” then you shouldn’t have any problem with AAs working to preserve these “petty” “Black spots” for OURSELVES as AAs.

          Since AAs are the ones who made these “petty” “Black spots” possible in the first place.

          I have yet to read one word of RECIPROCITY from your end but you are demonstrating a fair bit of hubris with your lecturing of US.

          I suggest you find a Nigerian blog that caters to YOUR interests and we AA BW via BWE and other avenues will continue to focus on our interests along with setting boundaries for the likes of you and your ilk.

        • Don’t get it twisted, whites allow those spots to be reserved for Blacks out of decency and pressure, don’t get it twisted if they wanted to make it that no blacks entered Harvard tomorrow they could do so. Don’t believe in the hype of the civil rights movement because blacks still have a ways to go economically. Wallow in your divisiveness, unwarranted jealousy and self-pity. I’m out.

        • @Tobi: Bye!

          @ The AABW Reading Audience: There are some disparaging yet factual things I could say to Tobi about her country of origin, but why bother? Who cares? It doesn’t matter to me; and unless you’re married to/related to/very close friends with somebody from her country of origin, it really shouldn’t matter to you.

          Whatever is wrong with Black foreigners’ countries of origin has nothing whatsoever to do with OUR interests as AA women. And that’s what this conversation (before efforts at derailing began) has been about: OUR interests and how WE choose to allocate OUR resources as AA women.

          I’m going to address this from what’s probably an unexpected angle. Here’s a Pop Quiz for those of you AA women who:

          (1) Have been “caping” for the 200+ kidnapped Nigerian girls AND who are

          (2) NOT married or related in some way to a Nigerian person:

          Did a single, solitary Nigerian person even ask you to cape for these girls?

          Rhetorical question—Or did you start doing UN-solicited caping on behalf these girls? [Which is the AA mules’ behavior pattern.]

          Those of you who have been caping (especially unsolicited caping) for these Nigerian girls while simultaneously NOT caping for the suffering girls from your own AA tribe (for some of y’all, suffering girls from your own family) should read and meditate on 1 Timothy 5:8—

          “But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” King James Version.

          I would urge those of you who identify as Christians to think this over. Because the pattern with most of the different scriptures I’ve read is that there’s a divine promise of negative consequences for folks who don’t take heed of the warnings contained in that scripture. There are larger common sense principles mentioned in this verse—including the generally observed pattern that nobody respects people who refuse to look out for their own interests.

          Nobody respects people who refuse to provide for own selves, their own “houses,” and their own kind. The observed pattern throughout human history is that such persons end up being treated like “infidels.” Disrespected. Suffering the negative consequences of their own folly.

          Interestingly, this describes Blacks (as nations and ethnic groups) all across the planet.

          Africans complain about being disrespected; and they are disrespected all around the world. The Africans, West Indians and other foreign Blacks keep running afoul of this verse. By their continued dependence on international welfare in the form of foreign aid.

          And by their ongoing failure—50 or so years after independence—to lift up their own national “houses” instead of running away in a “brain drain” to the U.S., Canada and Europe. Running away to lift up the American, Canadian and European national “houses.” Their continued failure to make their homelands places in which the population is happy to stay—with no need to run to other countries. Unlike, say South Korea or Japan. There are Korean and Japanese students in the U.S. and Europe. But they really don’t have to leave their home countries to go to internationally respected universities. Them folks have their own “stuff.”

          I’m not saying this to malign foreign Blacks. The situation is what it is in their homelands. The same way our mess as AAs in the U.S. is what it is. And on a collective level, it’ll stay that way or get worse until various folks get their behavior in proper alignment with that scripture.

          The Blacks of Latin American and the Arab world are at the bottom of those societies. And disrespected. Other people in these societies notice Black males’ general and persistent failure to lift up those from their own “houses” (in favor of lifting up other people’s “houses”). Here’s a post about the same behavior pattern regarding wealthy Black Brazilian males.

          AA males keep running afoul of this verse (by their overall pattern of paternal abandonment) and then want to act perpetually surprised that they’re not respected as men.

          Ladies, I submit to you that similar reactions and consequences apply to YOU as an AA woman who capes for everybody and anybody except yourself (and except for the suffering girls from your own tribe).

          And that’s what I and other BWE writers have been talking about—AA women’s refusal to look out for self and kind while they engage in knee-jerk caping for everybody else.

          Follow the money and resource trail. The interaction with Tobi reveals another familiar pattern. When we start saying that we’re not going to keep letting other people eat the food off our plates, the claws come out and all that previous sweet talk evaporates. After all, this is the same Tobi who just yesterday said, “There are many instance in which Afr-Am women have taken roles meant for African women (Kerry Washington, Jennifer Hudson), however it makes no difference to me. They are Black, and extension. No disrespect @Khadija and @Onelesssoldier but I’m about my Black girl/woman solidarity, It’s too much of a headache to split us apart.”

          You’ve seen this same behavior pattern with AA negro males who are acting in bad. Once AA women say that they’re no longer going to cooperate with being exploited, then we’re accused of being “bitter.” With the foreign Blacks who are acting in bad faith, the buzzword accusation they use is “jealous.” Whatever . . . {yawn}.

        • @Khadija,

          My God aren’t you fear-mongering and dramatic-don’t try to drag me by comparing me to BM because I tried to be as respectful and as understanding as I could before you started jumping down my throat. Nobody said that African-American women should not be wise with their resources or look out for themselves fore-mostly. What I’m saying is that your beef/accusations of stolen resources and lack of reciprocity should not be with African women. With DR BM, Koreans and Biracials taking from your pockets, it is simply unproductive to focus all your saltiness on Africans or so-called “foreign” blacks given that we share an image. I guess solidarity isn’t for Black women either, SMH, you’re starting sound like some bitter harpies. Let me just unsubscribe from this blog so I receive no more notifications of this crap.

        • Jealosuy and self pity huh? Yet you are here on this “jealous and self pity” blog trying to convince us to be inclusive. Every other group can exclude including Africans. But god forbid if AA women decide to be exclusive. This blog does not teach self pity or jealousy. It teaches black women to progress, using our resources, and buliding pur resources. It lets me know who my enemies(those who do and will not benefit me or look out for my best intrest). You sir/ma’m are not an allie. You have proven that already. You are a danger to AA women. Instead of telling AA WOMEN to expand themselves, then why not tell that to Latina, Asian, and white women who purposely exclude other women who do not share their phenotype. Your comprehension skills are lacking. First you state you like this blog, now you dislike it. Oneless soilder is not here to impress you. I find you insulting and a Nuance.

    • I work with someone who studies us and uses it to families and friends’ advantage. While many of us here thinks, “Oh, she is so nice”, really? If you only knew how little respect she has for most AA people.

    • AA’s are just a few generations from the old south, and many foreign born blacks know this. Southerners from the old south OF ALL COLORS, are treated like ‘hayseeds’. There was an old saying “you could take the negro out of the south, but not the south out of the negro” and some foreign ones seem to have a little ‘mystery’ about them, along with, sometimes a 2nd language

      • Its easier to play dumb. Oh, I did know that. Am not from here. Although, has been living here for nearly 30 years and still playing dumb.

  4. pop Quiz Ladies,

    For all of their preaching, speaking, and writing about what we should and shouldn’t be doing, has any of them changed in anyway that is for our benefit? No??? When you talk about what you need and how unfair the system is to you do they act like, Look I get it it’s messed up so you can stop talking to me about it. Where’s the actual dismantling of this messed up stuff. No Ladies they aren’t gonna do it. We have to do for us. No I stopped expecting or looking for rectification from these people a while back.

    Just stop doing and never say what your plan is or where you are going. Remember half or what comes out of their mouths is derailment. They need you cause you do and that means they don’t have to and their sh!t gets done. See they are living nice while you’re hustling to make ends meet. Once you stop doing for them you’ll find that you have way more time to get things done.

    Another thing, give real thought about getting rid of your tv as most of us have computers and can watch what we want without all of that advertisement and buying into the next thing. Make your own advertisement with women who look like you and are for you. Find or make blogs, stories, and such about Black Women the way you want them to be portrayed. The internet and a camera are a powerful thing to have. We have options and don’t have to settle for the crap we don’t like and we don’t have to give notice that we quit.

    I say don’t tell them about it because you never tell your enemies or competition what your next move is personally or collectively. If, people don’t fit into your plans in a gainful way consider cutting them out. I’ve found just letting certain people fade has been a good thing while with others a sharp cut was necessary. However, at the end of the day I find that I am better off without such people and faux friends. It an on going lesson, but I’ve managed to surround myself with people who do for me and if, I can’t have that then it’s better to be alone than being used.
    Great post as always OLS.

    • Where is the like button?
      “Make your own advertisement with women who look like you and are for you. Find or make blogs, stories, and such about Black Women the way you want them to be portrayed. The internet and a camera are a powerful thing to have. We have options and don’t have to settle for the crap we don’t like and we don’t have to give notice that we quit.”

    • good comments.
      “We have options and don’t have to settle for the crap we don’t like and we don’t have to give notice that we quit.” “Just Do It”, Nike style.

  5. I am glad that your blog is here.

    About a decade ago, I noticed that I wasn’t seeing as many brown skinned black women on TV. Now, I am a light skinned black woman but it bothered me just the same because I could tell that something was shifting and changing and I wondered what was going on.

    I don’t have a problem with Halle, Lupita or Zoe working. But I’d like to see women like Nia Long, Sanaa Lathan and Regina King working just as well. It shouldn’t have to be either or, it should be both. Yes, it’s true that a lot of white British actors portray Americans, and I’ve heard that the British actors are better trained than American actors, BUT there is enough work for both Hugh Laurie and Brad Pitt to work in America, but not enough for both Nia Long and Carmen Ejogo and to me, that’s the issue.

    Here’s an example, take the film, “Miami Vice,” starring Jamie Foxx, who played the black woman in the movie? Naomie Harris, a black British woman. True, Colin Farrell, an Irish actor was in the film as well, but as I said above, there is enough work for white, male British and American actors.
    What is also true is that black, British actresses can also work in their own country; Naomie Harris was in the James Bond movie, “Skyfall.” Do you think Nia Long would have been cast in that film? Heck no! Why? Because the Brits would have been pissed and probably would have boycotted the film.

    • When Renee Zelleweger (American) was cast as Bridget Jones (heroine of a British best-selling fiction) there was controversy. Even though the character was fictional (as opposed to the historical roles that are being discussed here). Even even though the book was popular in the US (as opposed to the roles that aren’t part of both the US and UK narratives.) And even though the rest of the cast was British (as opposed to 12Y which was predominantly cast by non-US Blacks.)

      When Memoirs of a Geisha was produced, there was controversy about the main roles being played by non-Japanese actresses. This controversy was slightly mitigated by releasing the fact that the production company was Japanese, and that the non-Japanese actress that were cast were already huge box-office draws and were very likely to boost sales.

      So it’s really…interesting…that anyone would have an issue w/Black American’s questioning (or flat out withholding) their support of this film, just on principle. People aren’t supposed to like when they’re being capitalized on while being excluded from the capital.

      • I one for is SICK of the SLAVE movies. What was the point? Lets move the on to bigger and better. Another slave movie, really? All the while the director married outside of his African culture.

    • You are correct when you said there is enough acting work for white Americans and white British people. But, not too much work for people of color. These british b/people might thank AA people for being trail blazers but, that is as far as most will go. Thank you for making it easier for my arse to come to America and win your roles.

  6. Excellent post as usual & very insightful comments by the readers. We as African American women must make decisions that benefit us. I definitely see signs that some of us are finally getting the message and starting to do for ourselves. Financially support those who support & further our image. I totally agree with firefly88 in particular & have changed my entertainment spending towards people who are interested in promoting a positive image for me & mine first and foremost.

  7. Reciprocity is the key.
    Not everyone can claim be an African person.
    Apparently, anyone can claim to being an African American person. This is what is posted on an African woman’s membership site.

    1) Membership to the ASA WOMEN- USA is through affiliate Chapters, or by Members at Large. The association is open to all Anambra State Women in the United States of America. An Anambra State Woman is one who, by birth, marriage, naturalization, or adoption, is a native of the area delineated as Anambra State in Nigeria. ASA Women is already in existence in some chapters in the USA. We are currently providing ASA Women throughout USA an umbrella organization, so that every Anambra State woman living in the USA will have an opportunity to participate in deliberating issues affecting Anambra State Women /Children / Youth in USA and in Anambra State, Nigeria.

    Some of these same people who will work hard to keep AAs in their place, will claim to be AAs when there is a scholarship, acting role, or anything else that is of value.

    Therefore, do not even think of trying to be anything other than an AA person.

  8. There needs to be a better definition of what an African American is. Was your ancestors part of the Middle Passage? Then you are probably not a traditional African American. Therefore, continue to state that you are from X country American and not African American.

      • LOL, they will claim that also, any word with Afro or African. Again, my question would be…where your ancestors part of the Middle Passage?

        The Middle Passage was the stage of the triangular trade in which millions of people from Africa were shipped to the New World as part of the Atlantic slave trade. The is a section in Wikipedia about the sailors who operated those ships. I thought whoever wrote this was trying to make those sailors appear innocent…keep trying.

  9. I admit to being a bit confused–>since when are foreign-origin blacks stakeholders in a discussion about African Americans black women? Enquiring minds want to know or could it be that folks want some of the few crumbs still left from what AA BW’s ancestors achieved in the U.S.? (rhetorical question).

    “.. Between the UK and the US, I know a total of 17 Kenyans … and ONLY 5 of them, FIVE total!… went to see Lupita Nyoung in 12 years a slave. (yes, I polled!)..”

    ^On a separate note, if Kenyans weren’t even that interested in Lupita, why are foreign blacks trying to give us grief for not “caping” for Lupita.

    • Karen you ask a very good question. I don’t know why everyone and their mother believes THEY get to tell American Black Women what they SHOULD/ Are experiencing despite AABW strongly saying its NOT HAPPENING, or why they believe they might have a stake in what AA DO. Its extremely offensive and even more telling.

    • “Caping” has worked out well for Lupita, if reports are correct she will be in the latest Star Wars. Apparently, there were no AA BW actresses to be found and given that in all of the Star Wars movies to my knowledge no AA BW actress was ever given a visible role, it does not bode well for AA BW actresses when they are not even be selected in home grown American movies. Other “tribes”/countries will not go out of their way to cast an AA BW in their movies because they maintain their boundaries and ethnic pride for their own which is normal.

      It again shows what happens when AA BW blindly “cape” for others that never asked for their support and therefore will show no reciprocity in return –> namely, AABW receive nothing in return and the reward/benefits go to “others” while we continue to be marginalized and erased. Unless we begin voting with our wallets and send a clear message, this trend will continue and accelerate.

      • That’s so sad. In a decade AA BW actresses will be effectively locked out of Hollywood. We will only have ourselves to blame. AA BW actresses need to get on the ball and make/produce their own work.

  10. Wait, I’m confused about being here finding no value in Lupita’s success and imagery…is she not black? Is she not bettering the image of Black women in general. It’s okay to be indifferent but I don’t get the animosity (someone saying that she looked like crap in 12 years, really?). I think she has done well, especially for dark girls.

    As for Zoe Saldana…
    She can get dragged for all I care.

    • I’m not sure why you are bringing up this issue here? I have said nothing negative about LN looks, personality. I don’t know the woman. I still don’t understand how you don’t get that for AA BW they are not seen in the same light as foreign bw and most times by groups of other blacks and the larger world are not seen in the same POSITIVE light that foreign bw are in america. You said you are canadian african. Please do not tell me what my experience in RACIST america is because it is not the same and I am entitled to my opinion.

      • I’m not trying to belittle your experience. I understand that African-American women are in a very unique position in society. I actually don’t disagree with your opinion, African-American women should look out for themselves first; however, In my opinion, I just don’t see our images (positive or not) as mutually exclusive…at the very least I do not see it as zero-sum. All black women lose (African or not) when RHOA comes on unfortunately.

  11. I have a serious question.
    What does the blogmother and the rest of the folks commenting consider AA women or black American women?
    Is it reserved for bw whose families have been here for xyz generations (since slaves were brought over), or is it the bw who were born AND raised in the US??? What is the criteria?
    I have been calling myself a black American woman for years. I was born in the US. I was raised in the US. I was born to African parents. Am I considered native or foreign??
    Those who stated this earlier are correct about if you try to claim you are Kenyan or Nigerian or Ghanian and you were NOT born and raised there, simply having parents who are from there isn’t always enough for people to claim you. You would be at most Ghanian-British or Nigerian-German in their eyes. Same for white Americans who try and fail to claim certain European ancestry.
    Thanks 🙂

    • BWLivingWell,

      Let me preface my response to your question with an observation.

      From what I’ve seen, what you’re describing regarding the reactions of continental Africans and continental Europeans regarding the descendants of African or European immigrants from their homelands is the general, normal reaction. Healthy ethnic groups aren’t so quick to allow folks who grew up/live OUTSIDE their countries of origin (meaning grew up OUTSIDE the shared experiences of folks who grew up within and live within their country) to “bogard” their way into stakeholder status.

      This is the general reaction even though these descendants of immigrants share the exact same BLOODLINES as the folks who remained in the home country.

      All the way back from caveman times, membership in most tribes, ethnicities and nations are based on BLOODLINES. In other words, based on SHARED ancestral descent.

      Modern, technicality-driven (like “anchor babies”) views of citizenship does not trump bloodlines and shared ancestral descent. Anchor-baby-driven, technical U.S. citizenship does not change the foreign-origin person’s bloodlines or ancestral descent.

      The children of White/Black/Latino/whatever type of NON-Korean immigrants to South Korea don’t get to wake up one day after growing up in South Korea and proclaim themselves as being part of the Korean people. It wouldn’t even occur to anybody who lacks Korean bloodline ancestry to try that. Folks only presume to do that with African-Americans because we’ve been negligent in setting boundaries with other people.

      African-Americans (AAs) are those Black folks in the U.S. who are descended from the African captives who were held in slavery in the United States. Anybody who’s not part of this shared bloodline is not part of us. Pres. Obama married into the AA bloodlines. His children are AA. But his bloodline (continental African and WW) has ZERO connection to AAs. He’s not descended from the African captives who were held in slavery in the United States.

      There are nuances to all of this. I’m not as annoyed with Pres. Obama calling himself AA because he’s married into my “tribe.” *And I let that slide in mixed company because I feel that overall, it operates as a “credit” to my tribe. I’m also not annoyed with Min. Farrakhan calling himself AA (even though he’s of West Indian bloodlines) because he’s married into my tribe (IIRC); and he’s been loyal to my tribe. And most of all, he was willing to follow and SERVE the leadership of an AA man (Elijah Muhammad). Too many foreign Blacks want to preside over AAs in the U.S. And tell us what to do about OUR issues—like some of the folks who have entered this conversation and the earlier post’s comment section. Which is our own fault because we generally don’t set boundaries with these people.

      I’m leery of people who want to strip the AA ethnic group of anybody and everybody who might be perceived as an accomplished person.

      *Side note to other AA readers: I feel that some of y’all need to watch that. In your fervor to call yourself discarding the “one drop rule” you’re making it easy for non-AA bigots to subtract a lot of historical AA heroes/sheroes from our tribe. There are folks out there who hate AAs so much that they don’t want us to be credited with anything or anybody who’s productive. These bigots are in a hurry to find a way to describe any accomplished AA Black person as anything other than AA and/or Black. And in your fervor to call yourself discarding the “one drop rule,” you’re helping these bigots do exactly that—subtract illustrious historical persons from our Black AA tribe.

      The historical reason why so many of our early leaders and accomplished ancestors were more immediately “mixed” than is “typical” for us is because those were the first AAs who were positioned to have access to education and/or money (as the slavemaster’s direct offspring or as “free persons of color”). The productive, loyal tribe members Black folks that many of y’all new school individuals are in a hurry to call “biracial” and not Black—like the slavemaster’s son Booker T. Washington—used their resources to help lift up other, NON-mixed AAs.

      Please learn to examine the costs/benefits angle with everything. It helps the AA tribe to distance ourselves from and discard toxic, useless people by calling them “biracial.” It does NOT serve our interests to subtract any of our tribe’s esteemed historical members by referring to them as “biracial.”

      Rhetorical question—Why is this so hard for so many of us to understand? White folks have this down pat. When somebody who is half-White & half-Other is a “credit,” they’re quick to claim racial & tribal connection to that person. Folks like Keanu Reeves are identified as White by many (most) other White folks. When somebody who is half-White & half-Other is a turd (like this half-White/half-Asian creep who did the latest mass shooting), they’re quick to distance that miscreant from the rest of their race & tribe. Nuances, ladies—nuances.

    • Hi!
      That’s a good question! I think for me, I would identify AA black women, as those who don’t know who there ancestors are. I think the one defining difference between AA BW and Foreign BW would be that MOST AA BW because of history would have great difficulty ever connecting back where there ancestors originally came from during slavery, because they have been in the country for so many generations and most of it got lost in translation. For example I couldn’t tell you which African country my ancestors were from, and genealogically I could only got back about 200 years or so. But I couldn’t specifically point out from which country my family came. Which is pretty much the defining factor of someone being AA . Most AA because of slavery have much trouble tracing their genealogy to any specific country without a DNA test. I would think that if one’s ancestors didn’t originate from Slavery here in the US (and no i’m not talking about the virgin islands because that is an entirely different culture/history) or if you could trace them back to your original country WITHOUT some sort of DNA test you are probably not Native African American.

      I think you are in a unique position because your parents are African and yet you were born here. But I think it would be hard for many AA Americans to “claim” you simply because there is no shared history.

      I agree with that last statement, which is one of the reasons why I would have a problem claiming actresses like Lupita Nyongo who are clearly foreign born and don’t have any claims and ties to the US (unlike you) or African American black women and has never publicly attempted to make any ties. She has ties with her own country, has her own culture and largely her benefits and they way the world see hers verses me (or even you) would differ vastly.

      I also have a problem with some of the commenter who are black but are not even FROM American AT ALL not born here / not even raised here telling black American Women what is benefiting them. Because yes, American BW and Canadian BW are going to have some differences and to not point that out or pretending they don’t exist would simply be untruthful.

      Hope this clears things up.

    • Khadija as usual made excellent comments. And, onelesssoldier also by pointing out Caribbean people are not considered Americans. The British colonized the Caribbean. Therefore, if your ancestors were not apart of the Middle Passage to America then you are not a traditional African American, case closed.

  12. You cannot beat the level of quality in the post and in the comments.
    It is seriously encouraging to see AA BW enforce boundaries and maintain them, even with other BW.

    • Great to hear from you as always BS and I fully agree with the comments here. Especially glad Khadija jumped in especially since she’d written extensively on this. BTW there will be another post soon, so I will send the post your way for editing when I’ve finished.


  13. Everybody knows how to benefit from the AA woman but the AA woman. Anybody who has grown up in predominantly black areas can see that Africans for a long time has only seen the AA woman as a profit (i.e. braid shops, stores, restaurants) and nothing else. Foreign blacks have no respect for AA blacks. They pretend to like us to use us like the rest of society.

  14. General Addendum:

    To the reading audience, this is how parasites are; they try to “lay low” even act like they are supporting you until the moment you begin to cut off their “blood supply”, then they expose themselves for the parasites they truly are.

    As Khadija has said in previous essays, “follow the money trail”. That is EXACTLY what foreign Blacks and other opportunists have been doing. They want YOUR resources and will use various forms of “gaslighting” to maintain that ONE-WAY FLOW OF RESOURCES.

    It is way past time to CUT THEM OFF!

  15. I met up with my mom today after work and she was HAWT about a hour long discussion that she just heard on the radio.
    Apparently AL Sharpton had announced that he would be taking a week off from his show and well known financial planners were going to be dispensing money saving tips and strategies for BP,( which is why she tuned in as she is not a fan).
    Well the main guy who is putting the whole seminar together decided that he would dedicate one show for BW only. (he’s a BM) He thought BW deserved their own financial planning to help single moms, first generation college students/grads, those who needed help getting off welfare and the best ways for home ownership and start up businesses. He
    stated that he was impressed by how many BW were taking money matters seriously and
    with our spending capital, if we could funnel the money correctly it would be a great way to empower ourselves.
    My mom said the calls were BM after BM blasting the host about that decision and some out right telling him that he was wrong to do so.
    She stated that he said their were four other days that they would focus on BP collectively, but why don’t you even want to give BW one day.
    I asked if the guy ended up backing down and he concluded that segment by saying he was sorry BM felt that way, but he would do it anyway and hoped the BW listening would still call in and take advantage.
    This convo transitioned to BWE and I told her how the blogger Hamila was a Carib BW living in the UK and a few of our issues were parallel. We talked about the global position of BW before it circled back to AA BW where my mom went to church on me saying that she thought it was also spiritual about BM as a collective not getting ahead anywhere as their abuse/humiliation of BW is against God and her hopes that AA BW get together and move on with class and integrity.

    For context, this is a very big statement for my
    mother who is a child of the CR movement.
    She is dark skinned and has shared some of
    the bullying she received during childhood
    before the Black is Beautiful mantra. My sister and I are both lighter than her but not light skinned. She wanted to shield us as best she
    could from colorism/self loathing and all the men in my family acted as our protectors to all the females in the family. She acknowledged that those BM are of a bygone era and there is no sense trying to hang on
    collectively at all.
    I only thought of posting this when Khadija went New Testament biblical up in here!!
    Bravo again ladies:)

  16. I apologise in advance for the length of my comment. There have been quite a few points raised in the comments, so I am just responding to them all at once, sorry if the paragraphs seem a bit disjointed.

    I think that in general, 95% of us (all BW) would benefit in every situation, due to the positive image for BW. For the remaining 5% of times, where there might be conflicting interests, each individual BW, whatever their ethnicity, has to figure out how things work to her benefit and act accordingly.

    I have noticed a recent trend (within the past 5 years), of some AA women raising their mixed kids with the specific intention of telling them that they are not black, unlike previous generations of ir-married bw. I have seen several comments with them stating these intentions. I understand the desire to ensure one’s child is not exposed to the ABC (acting Black culture) mindset, but this seems to me to be a case of taking a good thing and twisting it into something bad. They are now mimicking the behaviour of bm with their mixed kids.

    There does not seem to be much consistency in the application of the one-drop rule. If you consistently try to include people in your group who PUBLICALLY proclaim that they are not of you, you devalue your collective worth. I have seen how many mixed-race blacks behave, particularly with AA’s, in a way that they would never try that rubbish with Asians (in the case of blasians), or with Africans, etc, as it will not be tolerated. They benefit from the ‘black’ label, then discard it when it benefits them. A good example is Tiger Woods, who made a habit of making racial jokes, his ‘blackness’ inoculating him from it being ‘racist’, yet he calls himself some nonsense made up term like ‘Cablanasian’. People don’t realise the other way he benefitted from the ‘black’ label. Part of his appeal was that he was the first ‘black’ star in his sport, so that alone already raised the potential sponsorship opportunities and endorsement deals he was going to get. Funny that you never heard him come out with that cablanazheun line then. After he had gotten the benefits, established himself as a media entity etc, he then discarded his direct connection to AAs, and started emphasising everything else. Saying that he was the first multi-racial golfing superstar did not have as much of a ring to it (similar to how Obama is the first ‘black’ president, because him being the first mixed-race president doesn’t make white folks feel as fuzzy and ‘post-racial’, electing a half-white individual as the first black president). It becomes a real problem when most, and in most cases all of the modern-day ‘firsts’ are half-non-black others. I remember a post the blogger Khadija did some years ago, about how biracial students would claim blackness when it came time to collect money for scholarships, but would become ‘biracial’ once they had gotten what they wanted. At the time, there was this foolish mixed-race female, who used to blog as well. I remember that in response, she had written a post that these AAs were bitter that white folks who donated money for scholarships also wanted biracial students to benefit, that if any of them (AAs) had a problem with it, they should take it up with white folks. When it was pointed out to her that it was Black people, not White, that donated all this scholarship money, she had no response. I will mention that this fool has a Black mother (IIRC, her father had married/remarried a WW, and she lived with them). I suspect that for a lot of biracials, their ‘hatred’ of Blacks is due in part to their own self-hatred.

    I disagree with the commenter that said that white folks claim multi-racial individuals when it benefits them. Whites don’t ‘claim’ off-white folks, they just don’t discard them. They don’t talk about it, so that it doesn’t become an issue that they then have to backtrack from later on if things go wrong. Only Asians (and blacks, which I find strange, as we have no dog in that fight) go on about the asian-ness of Keanu Reeves, Kristin Kreuk etc. In fact, the only time I have ever seen white folks talking about them in that respect was when one WW on a forum was trying to convince the WM on the site that the reason the woman (Kreuk) was so pretty was because of her ‘whiteness’. Many ww have moved away from excluding attractive white-appearing women from their group, because it is in their interests to do so. However, they do not let these women become the standard bearers of the image of what a good-looking white woman is, because that is AGAINST their interests. WM do it too, but for a different reason. It just increases the access they have to women, ensuring that these women (the ones that they want/find desirable), would not be inclined to turn them down based on them being from an ‘other’ racial group. With the way many white feminists with too much time on their hands rail against the excessive number of blonde women in the media, you know that there is tension there. But even they (ww) still play into it, even though the vast majority are naturally brown-haired, because they know that it excludes every non-white woman.

    I noticed the differences in the American and British media labelling of the culprit in the recent shootings in California. If one only read British media sources, you would not know that the shooter was British-born. That is them ensuring that they remove any link or association between their country and this individual. That is a very normal thing to do. Nobody wants to be associated with or lumped in with undesirebles. If AAs want to exclude half-other folks who bring down their image, they should. Everybody else does it.

    I think there is confusion over the term ‘foreign’, as it is being used to refer to both foreign-born blacks as well as 1st and second generation African immigrants (& other black ethnicities), who are American, and therefore not foreign. In a bid to make a distinction between AA and non-AA black folks, it is sometimes hard to decipher what and who exactly is being spoken about because of the terms that are being used to label different groups. Part of the problem with this is because of America’s history, so there is nothing like an ‘American’ ethnicity native to the land (other than with Native Americans). So to be an ‘American’ just requires citizenship (and this is starting to apply in many European countries too. One might be referred to as ‘British’, the citizenship/nationality, as opposed to ‘English, Welsh, Scottish etc). For example, a white, black etc person born in, say, China or was to become a Chinese citizen, no one would ever refer to them as ‘Chinese’, because it is understood that that is in reference to the Chinese ethnicity. With countries like America, Australia, etc, where the bulk of the populations’ ancestors are not native to the land, there is no indigenous ethnicity to use as the identifier to differentiate between the legal citizenship status, and an ethnically indigenous native.

    Foreign students are not eligible for any affirmative action benefits. It does not apply/extend to them. So when looking at the Black students in American Colleges, it is pointless including the number of foreign Blacks as those taking the spots of AA students, as there is a set number of spaces allocated for foreign students, irrespective of what country they come from. It is only the non-AA Black students who are American citizens that are legally entitled to any of these benefits. Chinese students now make up 25% of all foreign students, the universities do not care about any balance, in terms of race, of the foreign students that they admit. If you include the number of students from other Asian countries, there would be an even greater imbalance in terms of the number of foreign Asian students. I actually think this is a dangerous development, as America seems completely blind to the fact that they are educating the very people (the Chinese) that are very soon going to ‘rule’ them, but that is a different discussion. My personal opinion is that only AA and Native Americans should have been eligible for certain things. If the intention was to right or redress historic wrongs, which, I think, should have at least been part of the intention, then that is how things should have been set up. Instead, there was this drive for the current diversity initiatives, and some Civil Rights leaders foolishly pushing for a ‘rainbow coalition’ (I’m still scratching my head at the stupidity of that), it became an issue of reflecting the racial make-up of the population, which is fair enough, but I just don’t think that should have been the main priority. I will note that WW are the biggest beneficiaries of affirmative action, particularly when it comes to jobs. Whites change the law as it suits them, e.g the recent decision in Michigan to outlaw race-based affirmative-action policies, while keeping the ones that benefit them. They kept affirmative action for those who live in rural areas (predominantly white), and for vets as well. The main thing that Black people can do is NOT live in predominantly Black areas, as they always vote to limit the funds that are allocated to you. Live in more mixed areas. If your children are in the same schools as theirs, they cannot vote to deprive yours of the tax spending, as their child suffers as well. Instead, Black folks response was to whine and cry about it, calling it unfair, instead of recognising that these people were just voting for/acting in their interests and it is time that you do the same.

    It will be hard to police the borders of the AA group as AA men intentionally replace AA-BW with half-black women, and lift up mixed kids in the place of black children. The truth is that they intend on having half-non-black offspring, so they see it as helping the children they intend to have in the future. I remember a YouTube video of some pan-African dancing, etc, that was made by a Nigerian man. Some of the Nigerian men complained that why did they use mostly mixed-race and other non-black women at the front. The man who made the video was trying to double-speak, saying that why does it matter, that aren’t they all African. When the men rode him on it, he apologised and said that they just used anyone that turned up (I will note that peculiarly enough, all the men in the video were dark-skinned). One Nigerian man with a polish wife complained in the comments section, as he said he wanted his children to be able to benefit from the resources. The men told him that if he wanted that, he should have married a Nigerian woman. Why should they work to give their collective wealth away to children who were only half-Nigerian. That why can’t he go to Poland and get them to do stuff for his kids since they were also half-Polish. Funnily, he had no response. These were young men, most of whom hadn’t even started a family yet. But they recognised that supporting this was supporting the erasure of their own future children.

    I understand the desire to include people in the in-group who one feels are a credit to the group. But if the rules are changed willy-nilly, it becomes easy for everyone else to disrespect the ethnic-inclusion boundaries. I don’t want to come across as giving unwanted advice, but I think it might be wise for AAs to adopt the approach that most other people use. As I said earlier in my comment, you don’t have to label someone as part of the group (e.g if you label someone as automatically Black or AA because they are half-Black, you would struggle to convince anyone that another half-Black individual is not part of the group due to their half-otherness). Just don’t discard them. Ensure that they have shown that 1) they are a credit to the group, 2) they will reciprocate any support they get, and 3) they wouldn’t turn round later, after they have gotten the benefit of your support, and begin to claim half-otherness of groups that didn’t support them.

    A few years ago, there was an article written about mixed-race people, and their new identity. There was a mixed-race BM, who was half Japanese (or some other east Asian ethnicity). He was in his mid-forties. He said that he was very self-identified with his Blackness in his youth, he was Black power and all that, marched for every Black cause. He had bumped into another mixed-race person as an adult, who purposely self-identified as biracial. He started investigating his Asian heritage, and said that as an adult, he now identifies himself as mixed-race. He now does work to help biracials accept/be confident in their heritage. At the time, I remember thinking that throughout his life, he had access to so many resources as a Black ‘activist’. Now that he is successful, his support is going to mixed-race folks, not the Black community that supported him. So even though I understand the many motivations for still holding on to the one-drop rule, ODR, (and I pretty much agree with Khadijas stance in her comments re nuance and not being rigid with it), I just think it is too easy for these people to be able to turn around and take their resources with them after they have benefitted from the ODR. They never try to take from the non-Black side, as they wouldn’t dare. If you really are going to play it that way, then it should apply in both directions, shouldn’t it? If a half-white half-Black woman is a substitute for a Black woman, then, since they are ‘biracial’, she should also be a suitable substitute for a White woman, should she not? If people are genuinely identified with the in-group (e.g in this case AA), by all means claim them as one of you. I just don’t think that these half-others should be the main standard bearers, especially as many of them seem so keen to distance themselves once they get what they want!

    • This is one of the best comments I’ve read. This is comment is a lesson (and really what i was trying to say but may have done it badly) about how AA black women can protect themselves and remain neutral at the same time. Thank you. Great to hear from you as always.

    • @JaliliMaster,

      I 100% co-sign. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU. You’ve perfectly summarized many of the nuances that I’ve been talking about from the very beginning. I’ll comment on some of things you’ve mentioned.

      You said, “I think that in general, 95% of us (all BW) would benefit in every situation, due to the positive image for BW. For the remaining 5% of times, where there might be conflicting interests, each individual BW, whatever their ethnicity, has to figure out how things work to her benefit and act accordingly.”

      Exactly! But it takes an ability to engage in critical thinking and nuance to do that. Right now, most AA women can’t do that. Instead, they stick to the mulish, knee-jerk caping for everybody but self that they’ve been indoctrinated into (by the AA historical misleadership class, which I’ll get back to). In light of this, I think the safest position for the bulk of AA women to adopt is OneLessSoldier’s Stay Neutral position. Or as I’ll say it: AA Women—For the love of God, PLEASE. STOP. CAPING. PERIOD. JUST. STOP. CAPING.

      You mentioned the AA women who are now “mimicking the behaviour of bm with their mixed kids.” I’ve angered these women over the years whenever I’ve brought up issues of racial and ethnic self-respect. As I mentioned in the comments to a Sojourners Passport post concerning my thoughts about the “Passing As Black” meme:

      “There’s some previously-unquestioned, nonproductive dogmas and taboos that are becoming normalized in various overlapping BWE & BF-IRR circles. It’s time to take a clear look at that stuff and ask ourselves—as individual AA women—does this bit of dogma/taboo work for ME? First, there’s an underlying vibe of wholesale spitting on AA heritage that’s been the unquestioned subtext of many conversations at various BWE & BF-IRR blogs. Second, there’s also been the unquestioned dogma that the “I’m going to check any and all boxes” mindset is always a good and healthy thing. And that this always represents self-actualization.

      . . . I will note that it’s one thing to clearly state the dysfunctions within modern AA culture, social circles, and residential areas that are wrong and deadly-to-AA women. It’s something totally else to become kneejerk anti-AA bigots. Or to advocate such. Or to carelessly say things that needlessly give the message of “Anti-AA & Anti-Black Bigotry Is Welcome & Championed Here—Feel Free To Come Here To Spit On AAs.” Which ties into the unexamined, sometimes unhelpful participation of some (not all, not most, and not many) foreign-origin Blacks at these AA blogs. Which is our own fault because AAs rarely set and enforce any kind of boundaries.

      Let me repeat yet again: I’m not trying to convince anybody of anything. I’m more interested in folks taking the time to think through these mostly unasked and unexamined questions. My point is to give some detailed food for thought while encouraging more AA women to ask the “Cui bono? What’s in it for me?” questions. In the marketplace of ideas, whatever answers anybody comes up with are their own.”

      You mentioned Tigger Woods’ (deliberate misspelling on my part) anti-Black racist jokes. Here’s a link to a post that discusses exactly what he said.

      One of the problems I’ve noticed in various overlapping BWE & BF-IRR circles is that the AA women who are imitating negro males’ behavior regarding mixed race children is that they always give these biracials a free pass on their anti-Black racism. Just like the rest of the AA collective. Somehow, AAs never hold these racist, anti-Black, half-Blacks like Tigger Woods responsible for their anti-Black racism. It’s crazy. And like I said in my most recent Muslim Bushido post, these type of interracially married AA women are on a fast track to becoming the Black grandmother whose descendants claim was just a family servant and not a relative.

      Back to the AA historical misleadership class: My sense of things is that African-Americans aren’t sincerely or genuinely confused about the distinction between technicality-driven, anchor-baby driven notions of “citizenship” versus ancestral heritage. We know who’s of “foreign-origin” as opposed to being a descendant of the African captives who were held in slavery in the U.S. The problem is that our AA negro male misleadership has been pushing these idiotic “Rainbow Coalition” slogans down our throats for the past 40+ years.

      As a result, many AAs feel guilty about openly drawing any distinction between ourselves and other people (foreign-origin Blacks, Latinos, other so-called “people of color,” etc.). Because we’ve bought into that rainbow b.s. ideology. Our historical AA negro male misleadership class has also been shoving “pan-African”-type talk down our throats for decades.

      And so instead of being perfectly clear that the civil rights gains created by AA civil rights martyrs were intended to redress historic wrongs, the historical AA negro male misleadership class sold out the AA collective by allowing affirmative action (and every other civil rights-gained benefit) to be doled out to everybody else. These negro male misleaders were so focused on trying to buy the friendship of nonblacks* (in hopes it would make it easier for them to sex and marry nonblack women), that they gave out free passes to the gains other AA Black folks had died for.

      [*Which, by the way, has NOT worked. There other folks (Latinos, Asians, hunchbacks, etc.) have happily gobbled up the affirmative action goodies created by the sacrifices of dead AA civil rights martyrs, and they still have no real affection for AAs. Just look at how our Latino “allies” treat AAs in California and Florida.]

      I’m convinced that our historic AA negro male misleadership class has been promoting this rainbow mess because from the very beginning most of them were motivated by a desire to be able to sex and marry WW without getting lynched. AA negro male leaders sold the movement to AA women as being about lifting up the entire AA collective, but judging from AA males’ behaviors, this was NOT was it was really about.

      Instead, from the very beginning, it was actually all about diverting AA Black material resources to the future mixed-race children these negro males hoped to have. Most non-AAs won’t play that mess because they have NOT been brainwashed into any sort of “rainbow coalition/we are the world” nonsense. Like the Nigerian men you mentioned who refused to entertain that mess from the other Nigerian man with the Polish wife. Good for them!

      I’ll close by repeating my plea to other AA women,

      For the love of God, PLEASE. STOP. CAPING. PERIOD.

      Please, since you don’t understand/can’t do nuance—JUST. STOP. CAPING.

  17. Very thought provoking post – and very insightful comments for the most part. As some of you know, I am foreign born myself. Even though the image of BW in American media impacts all BW, whether that imagery is good or bad, the implications are higher for AA women obviously, depending on where teh actress is from, and the roles she play. I was mostly indifferent to Lupita, even though it was nice to see a bw who looks like most other BW take centrestage in a very beautiful, graceful and poised way. However, persons who are not invested in uplifting the image of AABW will quickly differentiate someone like Lupita by pointing out the fact that she is foreign born – ie the fact that she is non AA, so as to prevent her being associated with AA women at all, even by accident. In this scenario, the fact that she is black does not matter as much. I know there are forces at work to undermine the image of AA women. Foreign born women, and foreign born people generally do have it easier (read: a better reputation) by virtue of not having the most dysfunctional elements of their culture or ethnicity on display, or on “front street,” who would lend to any unfavourable characterisations or stereotypes about said black people from other cultures. The losers from these groups remain in the country of origin. This is because it generally takes some ambition to emigrate to a country like the United States. This is especially so if you took the more challenging track of coming here on non-immigrant paperwork to attend school, like I did. Thus, most of the dysfunctional equivalents are not here to tarnish anybody’s image. So, it is a bit disingenuous for some of the commenters not to concede to this fact.

    • @Robynne,

      Oh yes, I remember you! {smile} I 100% co-sign. Immigrants represent a skewed portion of their societies—the most energetic people. Most people don’t have the courage and energy to get up and leave their home country.

      Immigration often has the effect of skimming off large portions of the cream of a society. Low-level knuckleheads tend to stay at home, and therefore out of sight of Americans. Thereby immigrants get to keep large chunks of their culture’s dirty laundry out of sight from outsiders because, for example—Delroy The (West Indian) Idiot never left the Caribbean.

      You have to go out of your way to learn what’s going on in foreign countries (to have an inkling of the dysfunction going on in other countries). Most Americans don’t and won’t do that.

      Meanwhile, DeShawn The (AA) Idiot is on full display on “front street” in his home country, the US (as you noted). So, everybody who immigrates to the US can easily see and hear what DeShawn The (AA) Idiot is doing on the local TV news.

      You said, “However, persons who are not invested in uplifting the image of AABW will quickly differentiate someone like Lupita by pointing out the fact that she is foreign born – ie the fact that she is non AA, so as to prevent her being associated with AA women at all, even by accident. In this scenario, the fact that she is black does not matter as much. I know there are forces at work to undermine the image of AA women.” <<<THIS right here.

      First of all, regardless of whatever they say they’re doing, AA males’ observed behavior since the beginning of the c/rap era shows that AA males are on a mission to undermine and destroy the image of AABW.

      Folks, please jump in and correct me if I’m wrong, but I don’t get the feeling that non-AA Black men are on a mission to destroy the image of the women from their own ethnicities. Off the top of my head, I can’t think of an example of a West Indian/African man doing something like what D.L. Hughley did—get on TV and say that he agreed with a WM racist who described some West Indian/African BW as “nappy headed hoes.”

      Second, the U.S. is in a process of re-stratifying its racial hierarchy. This came up during this post in which the commenters discussed what AABW can do survive and thrive in the emerging, RACIST to the core, Latino dominance of various fields of employment in the US.

      Spanish-language bilingual job requirements are NOT motivated by a desire to facilitate communication. Instead, the REAL purpose of bilingual job requirements is to create an ethnic employment monopoly for Latinos in this country.

      Another reader confirmed my Chicago-based observations about this when she described how job ads in Miami actually say: “NATIVE SPEAKERS ONLY.” This practice shows that the ultimate goal is NOT about communication, it’s about reserving certain jobs for Latinos ONLY.

      As a savvy commenter named Beverly said, “You see, what is happening is that Hispanic people are coming here and their goal is to achieve and become full-fledged white Americans. What will we do when their children are born here and speak English fluently (native speakers) and have a couple of degrees under their belt? They will still have the same mentality. Many of them will still only hire Hispanics and exclude Blacks. I saw this dynamic in Los Angeles ( I lived there for 7 years). In Los Angeles, you already have professional black people being excluded from jobs WITH the collusion of silly//self-hating blacks.”

      In response, I said, “Yep. And it’s working because White people are cooperating with identifying Latinos as “White.” Whites also cooperate with categorizing half-Asians as “White.” (Such as Keanu Reaves, etc.) They won’t do that with the offspring of Black folks.

      What confused Black folks who are the parents of “Don’t Call Me Black” self-proclaimed “biracials” refuse to understand is that we and our offspring are the ONLY ones permanently locked out of “becoming White” status. No matter how frantically these Black parents of “biracials” clamor to have their half-Black children categorized as White.”

      Since their raw numbers are slipping and they want to maintain a majority for as long as possible in the U.S., White Americans have started expanding their definitions of “White” to include Latinos* (of various skin shades and varying levels of mestizo appearance). Since their numbers are slipping, White Americans also need a buffer caste that they never needed before historically. And in order to create this new buffer caste, White Americans have begun to support the notion of a separate biracial caste in terms of AAs. White America didn’t play that biracial stuff before because they didn’t need to. They had an overwhelming numerical majority. The historical pattern is that Whites generally only recognize full or partially Black people as Something Other Than Black when there’s something to be gained by doing so. In this case, mitigating the emerging political effects of declining White (European-American descent) numbers.

      In this type of stratification, somebody has to be kept at the very bottom. Rhetorical question—Guess who that’ll be?

      I believe that, in line with the above-described trends regarding re-stratification, White Americans will increasingly perceive various “castes” of Blacks in America. With foreign-origin Blacks positioned as a Black caste above AA Blacks.

      [*As an aside, I believe that Latinos will ultimately have a nasty surprise in store for them several decades down the road (if it takes that long). While Latinos have been taking all the public image “hits” and hostility as the face of illegal immigration, I expect that Asian-Americans (especially Chinese and Korean-Americans) will ultimately ride Latinos’ immigration rights coattails and end up as the future economic and political elite in the U.S.

      Because these Asian cultures are simply stronger and more competitive along various dimensions: (1) the growing economic and military clout of their home countries (especially China); and (2) Latinos have weaker academic cultures—they’re not as inclined to study like robots the way Asian kids are raised to study like robots. Basically, it looks to me like Mexican immigrants (and their cheerleaders) are unwittingly paving the way for future Asian-American dominance in the U.S.]

      • @Khadija Nassif Thank you so much in clarifying this topic. I attend Pasadena City College and the campus has a large Chinese population. Chinese tourists come to this college because of it’s superior reputation, also San Gabriel Valley has a large population of Chinese immigrants. Learning how to speak Chinese is a must for the future.

        • @L, Higginp,

          You’re welcome! Yesterday, I heard Rev. “Baby Daddy” Jackson on the local Black-owned talk radio station and he was still talking that “Blacks & Latinos” kumbaya-fantasy. It’s breathtaking when you stop and think about how incompetent the AA male misleadership class has been/still is. AA negro male misleadership programmed the equally gullible AA collective to cooperate with illegal Latino immigration. And, with the help of gullible AAs, (legal and illegal) Latinos have replaced AAs as the largest minority group in the U.S. AAs have cut our own throats politically and economically (how many jobs have Latinos displaced AAs out of?) with this kumbaya cr*p.

          I believe that even better than learning to speak Chinese* is for more AABW to use the strategy that the earlier commenter named Beverly said in that Muslim Bushido post I linked to above.

          *Relying solely on being an employee is an increasingly losing position. Because these other people that AAs have been taught to believe are “allies” (Latinos & other people of color), will freeze AAs out of any jobs these other people control. And Latinos and others are beginning to control more and more jobs as they ascend in the U.S. Unlike silly AAs who share with everybody, other people of color tend to operate as ethnic monopolies. I’ve noticed that once Latinos and Asians get a toehold in a government office, or the private sector, they quickly work to develop an ethnic monopoly. They will even freeze White people out of employment when they get the chance.

          This is contrary to the “kumbaya kool-aid” that most AAs have been quaffing, but the reality is that the odds of AAs being hired are almost always better with WHITE gatekeepers than with Latino, Asian or other “person of color” ones. We must always remember this.

          Anyway, during that earlier conversation Beverly said,

          “I have thought about this issue for a long time. My conclusion is this: Black people as individuals and small groups need to position themselves as dominate powerbrokers in whatever they do. AND they must operate on an international scale. This is not as difficult as it sounds. It can be done on a small or large scale.

          For example: A black secretary living in Miami may be experiencing discrimination and unable to find work in the Hispanic stronghold. One thing she might do is using the internet and her skills offer her services to others around the country and world. Let’s say she’s a wizard at MSExcel. She could specialize in creating Excel documents for companies small and large around the world.

          Also, since English is an international/bridge language (not Spanish) she has an advantage as a native speaker.

          That’s just one example of how we may want to operate in the long-term. And of course this example is a small, simple one but I want to use it because it illustrates that anyone can use these strategies.

          I’ll repeat the closing response I had to Beverly’s wise suggestions:

          *ACTION PLAN* I know that some of you are assuming that what Beverly’s talking about is not possible for you. Before you limit your possibilities based on untested assumptions, at least take the time to read the following materials: Tim Ferriss’ book The 4-Hour Workweek (which explains how to do what Beverly is suggesting). And check out the following news story about a married BLACK couple who are using these sorts of ideas to run a micro-multinational company out of their home!

  18. If I may ask, what are the goal(s) of the BWE movement? What do black women what to accomplish and where do you see this movement in 10-20 years?

    • I think that @khadija Can answer that question better than I ever could as she was part of creating the movement along with other writers like Halima & Evia (edit: and Faith) I can’t speak on what I didn’t create.

      @ khadija If you have the time could you please answer this question?

    • Part 1 of My Reply To Max


      You asked, “what are the goal(s) of the BWE movement? What do black women what to accomplish and where do you see this movement in 10-20 years?”

      Per OneLessSoldier’s request, I’ll give my individual responses to those questions. Keep in mind that I’m only speaking for myself. I’m sure Evia, Halima and Faith have their own views and answers to those questions. From my perspective, there’s widespread basic agreement on BWE’s core values [(1) reciprocity and (2) BW living well/abundant living for BW] among the “1st wave” BWE bloggers. But each BWE blogger’s mileage may and does vary on specific details and peripheral issues. Just so we’re clear, I’m ONLY speaking for myself and my views.

      I would urge you to check out a website that Halima graciously spent her time organizing that explains the basics of BWE. It’s called Telling BW The Truth.

      BWE wants BW to LIVE WELL. The BWE movement has done the consciousness-raising necessary to enable a critical mass of AABW (and similarly situated BW in other countries*) to start living well. And to avoid living (and too often losing) their lives as the self-sacrificing mammy-mules-Sista Soldiers that generations of AABW have been programmed to be.

      *From what Caribbean-British BW like Halima have said, there are parallels between the issues faced by AABW and Caribbean-British BW.

      This is what those of us who are living well pursuant to core BWE values have done and are doing:

      (1) We’ve left Blackistan to reside in much safer and supportive areas.

      (2) We work toward actively protecting our physical and mental health with consciously-chosen healthier diets, regular exercise, and plenty of self-pampering.

      (3) We’ve cleansed our social circles of male-identified women, damaged-beyond-repair individuals of either gender, along with anybody else who is unable or unwilling to reciprocate our fellowship and support.

      (4) We’re forming as many mutually supportive relationships (of all kinds, romantic, friendship, religious fellowship, and so on) and networks as possible. Our relationships and interactions are based on reciprocity, not race or color. We support those people who support us. We don’t support people who don’t support us. We especially don’t support people who hate us.
      We naturally gravitate toward reciprocating relationships, and away from one-sided relationships. We didn’t need a sermon to explain to us why we should not financially support Precious, Red Tails, D’Jango Unchained, The Butler, Tyler Perry flicks, etc. Because we highly value ourselves, we are automatically repulsed at the notion of giving money to people who hate us.

      This is in stark contrast to the lives of the AABW who are caught up in pre-BWE “business as usual” Mammy-Mule/Sista Soldier mode. In worst case scenarios, that mammy-mule-Sista Soldier behavior pattern literally destroys the BW who engage in it. In best case scenarios, it creates an extremely diminished life for the BW who engage in it.

      Here’s an example of what I mean by that. In an earlier post, I quoted part of a comment made at another blog by a commenter named Oshun.
      partial quote from comment #9 & 34 to this post:

      Oshun said:

      “. . . It seems like all the people I used to know even people in my family are on the razor’s edge. (Knock hard on wood) Underemployed or unemployed + DBR BM and BW who keep having babies like it is 1945 and we are going through an economic boom = disaster.

      I have mule aunts who work full time and have nothing to show for it. They keep coming around asking for financial help and food because they are supporting DBR family who do nothing, but leech and keep up drama and discord and have babies. These women are too young for assistance late 40s- 50s and make too much money according to the poverty scale, but they are drowning.

      They have taken in a lot of DBRs (sons usually) and their baby mamas, and toddlers and newborns. And the suffering is palatable.

      I have one aunt who is supporting her son, his wife, and their two children. Sometimes their utilities are on and sometimes not. Sometimes the rent gets paid and sometimes it is 4 months behind.

      I am not an advocate for aid, but they need to apply for it. And they won’t. They won’t even try to get food stamps, which is the least they could do, and then buy food for the whole house. They also will not clean or cook and then will cuss her out. So she comes over here hunting for food.

      Then the people on her job are trying to force her out because they want to use temp workers not people they have to pay benefits too. If she loses her job she is up crap creek and so are they.

      My next door 40 something neighbor is one of the sorriest things I have ever seen. He has moved in with his grandmother and is leeching off of her because I guess it is so hard out there that baby mamas and desperate women are putting these men out. I am noticing a phenomenon where DBRs are just piling up on older female family members like never before. . . .”

      A few weeks later, Oshun gave an update on that situation with her aunt:

      “My aunt has had a nervous breakdown. She was released from the hospital this morning. The last time I saw her she was sitting like a zombie in my mother’s bedroom. She is barely able to walk.

      They told her that she needs psychiatric follow up care. Her car is being pulled this week and the gas was turned off.

      I was afraid to let my mom go by herself so when we went to pick her up and then swung by her house, we discovered her son, his wife, and their two children all in bed relaxing at 10am.

      When his mother was hospitalized he did not move or even go to check on her. He told her before she left with us today, “I don’t know how you are going to get back and forth to work after they pull your car this week.”.

      As she is standing there, hair all wild, with the hospital band still on.

      I am just stunned.”

      In that same post, I also referred to this NYT news story “Cries of Betrayal as Detroit Plans to Cut Pensions”

      Like the tragic episode with Oshun’s aunt, this news story features something we’ll see more of as each day passes: A 73 year old African-American (AA) lady who is caring for a more or less invalid BM husband who needs dialysis 3x per week. I’m citing this story lest anyone think that the picture Oshun is painting of an over-burdened and under-supported AABW is an anomaly.

      This toxic pattern of 1 or more adults depending on ONE AA woman who’s carrying their burdens for them is what’s happening with literally millions of AA women who are living the mammy-mule-Sista Soldier deathstyle.

      BWE’s goal has been to raise the baseline consciousness-level among AABW so they don’t get caught up in (and destroyed by) these types of situations. To raise the baseline level of consciousness among AABW so they can LIVE WELL instead of living and dying as mammy-mules/Sista Soldiers.

    • Part 2 of My Reply To Max


      You asked, “Where do you see this movement in 10-20 years?”

      In 10-20 years, I see BWE continuing to be just as victorious as it is right now. I see the victory that BWE has already won reflected in the joyous, abundant lives of ever-increasing numbers of AABW.

      BWE has already won. The core BWE message that Black women who are serious about marriage must expand their dating options to include nonblack men has firmly entered the mainstream. A critical mass of African-American women have heard the BWE message, and have MOVED ON into enjoying abundant life in the global village.

      Core BWE values have already become part of the mainstream thought of AABW online. Nowadays, you see AABW raising issues such as reciprocity, AA women’s relationship and marriage freedom to marry out, AA women’s right to seek to be stay-at-home wives and mothers(just like women from every other race and ethnic group) in places like Lipstick Alley and other celebrity gossip sites. This was NOT happening pre-BWE consciousness-raising activism. It wasn’t even safe for an AABW to talk like that online pre-BWE.

      Unlike traditional AA civil rights organizations that go on forever because their goals are never accomplished, the BWE social justice movement has accomplished its primary goals. BWE was designed to provide solid analysis and concrete solutions to help BW MOVE ON into joyous living. This has happened. The tools for escape have been provided. As they hear the BWE message, those BW who sincerely want abundant life have been quietly MOVING ON.

      This quiet and growing exodus of sensible AABW has not gone totally unnoticed. There’s a YouTube video in which a frightened BM asks the question, “Are Black Women Becoming Like Asian Women?” (in terms of dating and marrying White men). In terms of sensible BW, the short answer is YES. As this worried BM has noticed, increasing numbers of quality, desirable BW are leaving the toxic all-Black dating market and have MOVED ON.

      The victory of the BWE social justice movement will prove to be a lasting one because it’s sustained and enhanced by the ripple effects created by every AABW who finds joyous life in the outside world.

      Human nature—in the form of envy—will finish the job of saving those remaining AABW who are capable of being salvaged. The motivational energy produced by envy is over 1,000 times more powerful than any sermon. Each AABW who marries out leaves behind a number of BW relatives, friends, and acquaintances who are suffering in toxic, all-Black social circles.

      The left-behind BW will angrily think to themselves, “So & So (who married out) isn’t any better than me. If she can get a quality husband from the outer world, so can I!”

      This is the point at which the more ambitious among the left-behind AA women will start to imitate the other AABW’s various moves—her self-presentation choices, her social circle choices, and so on. The left-behind AA women will stop engaging in self-segregation. She’ll drop her knee-jerk grudge against White men. She’ll stop having knee-jerk, Oppositional Defiant Disorder-based reactions to the outer world. She’ll also take a hint from Black men, and learn how to do what works for her. Without trying to carry the dead Black community on her back.

      This chain reaction will continue to spread with each BW who successfully marries out into a wholesome lifestyle. One woman at a time. And so, victory will continue spreading to those AABW who love themselves enough to save themselves.

      The victory has been won by BWE, the trick is/will be for AABW to hold onto the victory. Holding onto the victory is/will be the challenge because most AAs have deeply embedded slave programming on top of the everyday collection of human frailties shared by all humans.

      Most AAs have been successfully programmed to sabotage anything that could possibly enhance or save their lives. Most AAs will take any and everything and twist it around into something destructive. AAs take new ideas and superimpose their same old, dysfunctional thought patterns onto the new idea. In the end, the new idea become merely a new slogan that’s used to justify the same old dysfunctional behavior.

      This is why AAs have turned every past solution into a new catastrophe. There are almost endless examples of this. We collectively did the “bait and switch” with many past solutions. We took desegregation and turned it into a pretext for engaging in a permanent, undeclared boycott against all Black-owned businesses (with the partial and dwindling exception of barbershops and hair salons).

      We took the language of multiculturalism and turned it into a pretext for maintaining our racial self-hatred and internal colorism. And there’s usually a sophisticated and fundamentally dishonest discourse surrounding each “bait and switch” episode.

      AAs have a tradition of getting everything twisted around. Which is how what should have been redress for wrongs done to AAs in the U.S. got twisted around into “diversity” benefits for everybody else—including WW.

      BWE is not a mass movement, it’s a self-directed, individual path to abundant living. As far as I’m concerned, BWE isn’t about getting thousands of AABW marching in the streets. I talked about this in detail in this post.

      BWE requires critical thinking skills because it’s a self-directed, individual path to abundant living. Women have to think for themselves and apply the core BWE values of reciprocity and living well to their own individual circumstances. Which is why repeating buzzwords like “reciprocity” and “vetting” are not enough.

      Unfortunately, there have been a number of BW who’ve been reading BWE sites for years and have learned NOTHING except how to repeat the words “reciprocity” and “vetting.” WITHOUT ever applying the values described by these words to their own choices and lives.

      Which has created an opening for unprincipled opportunists and hustlers to step in and pose as BWE bloggers. History has shown that whenever a social justice movement becomes successful, there’s often an incoming rush of latecomers who run in with the sole purpose of making a quick buck off of that movement’s success. This is what has happened with BWE. There’s been a crowd of opportunists and hustlers who want to wrap themselves in the BWE banner, yet refuse to practice BWE values.

      The opportunists and hustlers claimed to be about BW’s empowerment while simultaneously supporting the erasure of BW from their own history in Redtails. While supporting Steve Harvey’s warmed over garbage. And so on. When confronted about their hypocrisy, they say that they’re not BWE sites or BWE bloggers. But yet they continue to churn out blog posts under the tagline and label of “Black Women’s Empowerment.”

      The opportunists and hustlers don’t care if they’re peddling mental poison to AABW. For the hustlers, it’s ALL about trying to make a quick buck off of other AABW.

      But at the end of the day, the hustlers can only hustle certain types of AABW.

      The hustlers can only hustle those AABW who are too lazy to do the internal work needed to apply BWE values to their own lives.

      The hustlers can only hustle those AABW who are too lazy to do critical thinking.

      The hustlers can only hustle those AABW who are looking for somebody else to tell them what to do, what to believe, and how to think.

      The hustlers can only hustle those AABW who are too lazy to read the 1st wave BWE bloggers’ archives.

      The hustlers can only hustle those AABW who want to mimic the self-sabotaging behavior patterns of most interracially married AA males.

      The hustlers can only hustle those AABW who want to keep engaging in the same old Mammy Mule/Sista Soldier behaviors while giving lip service to hip, new BWE buzzwords and slogans.

      The hustlers can only hustle those AABW-Marie Antoinettes and Special Snowflakes are too invested in believing that anything that affects other BW can’t possibly affect them.

      And so on.

      At the end of the day, it’s not about the hustlers. It’s about those AABW who want to be hustled.

      For those AABW who are sincere about wanting to LIVE WELL and enhance their lives by following core BWE values, it’s important to fellowship with like-minded BW. Because as the BWE victory spreads, the okey-dokes (as Evia calls these tricks and snares) that are directed at AABW are becoming more sophisticated. It’s important to fellowship with like-minded BW to brainstorm the best practices for continuing one’s progress in abundant living.

      As I said at the very beginning, these are simply my thoughts in response to your questions. Other 1st wave BWE bloggers’ mileage may (and probably does) vary.

  19. I don’t comment here often, but this was an awesome post followed by one of the best commenting sections I have read in the BWE sphere. Thank you Khadija for taking the time to comment and leave the audience with a fully flesh-out idea of the nuances involved in the this issue of how and when AA and foreign immigrant Black people’s interest diverge. Like a lot of the commentators, I do believe 12 years’ movie and Dr. Martin Luther King soon to be made movies are the beginning of the end for AABW actresses getting work in Hollywood and other mainstream avenues. I was never gung ho about Lupita or the director and never saw the 12 year’s movie. To me slavery movies are the lazy person’s way of ‘learning’ about Black History. Let’s try to pick up a book sometime!

    I’ve seen this pattern for a long time with certain Afro-Latinas that have been working steadily in AABW roles for decades, and now other non AA Black people are capitilizing on this trend. It’s a sad situation all around; which is why I’m gradually weeding out all tv and movie forms of entertainment. It’s sickening to me how the debasement and erasure of bw; mostly AABW is woven into just about every mainstream tv show or movie plot. Sometimes it’s so subtle that you have to really think critically to detect it, but it’s almost always there. Therefore, I refuse to support these people who are getting rich off of harming me and mine; my tribe if you will.

    As for most Africans; my experience has mostly been with Nigerians. I have witnessed enough casual ‘disdain’ in day to day life from them that I have long come to the conclusion that as a COLLECTIVE (definitely not all) they really work to place themselves above AA’s. From the braidshops to working in a place of employment with significant numbers of Africans; I have seen it too often just to dismiss it as ‘random occurrances’. When Africans began to dominate the Braiding industry I saw the handwriting on the wall and stopped supporting them. Where I live it’s hard to find any AA woman who braids at home and does a good job. So. I. Stopped. Getting. My. Hair. Braided. I’ve done the same thing with the Afro-Latinas co-opting AA acting roles-I. Have. Stopped. Watching. Movies. Geared. For. A. Black. Audience.

    It’s not that hard once you start. There are plenty of books/plays/music concerts I can go to that will not debase or erase my image. There are plenty of other hairstyles I wear that do not include complicated braiding. I’m a lot happier with my personal choices now.

    • @Lynn,

      You said, ” Like a lot of the commentators, I do believe 12 years’ movie and Dr. Martin Luther King soon to be made movies are the beginning of the end for AABW actresses getting work in Hollywood and other mainstream avenues.”

      I have that same feeling. I hope we’re wrong about that. Time will tell, as it always does.

  20. Hi Everyone,
    I was away for a minute came back and saw the number and said wow. I was so excited to see what people had to say. I think over all that the comments were awesomeness. It’s great to know other black women are ready to flex into a different reality where they set the course and are learning how to navigate the sometimes rocky sea.
    That said a lot of what I wanted to say has already been said by others. However, there are somethings I will say. 1. This idea that black Americans have no place telling other black people’s stories and are infrenging on others souverinty. Well funny how that is never mentioned when blacks put pressure on the u.s. government on their behalf, go to protest and jail,and donate money to help them at great risk to our lives. We Black USA natives are the most loving caring and concerned people in the world about other so called Africans who in their countries could care less than a date about us here. Looking back at our history we have give way more love in our Africa first, pan African ways than any other group to continatiial African than they do amongst themselves. So, now they have a problem with us telling their stories and playing them in roles that up lift them when we could have a nd should have been telling our own. Well, that let’s me know back in the day when it was popular to send text books to poor children in Africa I was right to question why not ours first. So, in the end while some bring up these things to silence us it is them who will lose out as more black Americans wake up and comply and start telling our stories. We should do as others of their image ask and stop supporting and making films about them and theirs. Not because we haven’t earned the right with our sweat, blood, deaths, and undying love, and loyalty to liberation of all of Africa, but because we are not wanted or needed there. We are needed at home in our own country raising up our own image first, then our local, national, and international images first before we can justify getting involved in anyone’s else’s story.
    2 I think and I know this is going to anger some, but oh well that the people in Africa are not Africans and shouldn’t call themselves that. Why???? Because the are not united nor really want to be they are more national and tribe orentated. They are ebo, Hutu, and such and from what I hear really don’t care much for each other. Yeah, I know we shouldn’t take liberties in naming people, but I’m changing the rules as I feel entitled like a Nigerian who posted here said we should learn from them and defining somethings for myself. We here claim the whole contantent we embrace it all. That should be rethought, a story I remember reading once about some American nations going to I think is now Sierra Leone and the chief wanted to toast them with wine and the maroon leader asked is the wine we toast with here today purchased with the money you got when you sold us across the sea? Following the money trail leads to a lot of truth. A commentor here said we need to stop caping and follow the trail. Great advice and when in doubt stay neutral.
    3 the limits thing. She is well poised and pretty. However, her image doesn’t up lift us all no. She was quick to give props to Kenya and even Mexico, but no props to black folks here who’s story she is telling. No the woman she was portraying was not an contential African as that ended first foot on the slave ship she became black. Second American black women need not be portrayed as a slave anymore we have a glutton of these stories and we have moved well beyond that and maid stories. We need to take cccc control of how we will be viewed in the future and highlight other stories of our past.

    • Oops typing on a kindle sometimes it changes the words before I catch it I meant the Lupita thing.

      Also, it should be noted that we are being watched on this blog and other by continental Africans, black men and others who benefit from us, but offer little in return. The keep pulse on us because as I stated earlier we make life good for them at our expense. I was waiting for the derailment, but was still surprised at how these people felt okay derailing, hijack the conversation and became forceful and gained up so quickly. Also, the telling of black women what to think and do was over the top and when that didn’t work the see I was trying to be nice authority and name calling and snippiness began.
      In public when such people reveal themselves I get far away and keep my moves hidden and alert only trust and proven like minded others. Hope we can get back to discussing controlling our image collectively and personally and how to become independent from the need of a job. Such things I’m working on myself as life has taught most of us black women that we can depend on no one but us.

  21. I’ve never understood or agreed with the way affirmative action has been applied in the US. If one actually reads up on history and the introduction of affirmative action, you would see that what it is now and what it was initially sold as being are completely different. From my understanding, it was to redress the sanctioned historical wrongs of the American government and society at large of oppressed groups in America re Jim Crow etc. So it should only have applied to the blacks in America who were descendants of slaves enslaved in America, as well as Native Americans. Those are the only two groups that as far as I am concerned should have benefited from Affirmative Action. White women argued vehemently against it……until they were included in it. I don’t see why Latinos, non-AA blacks, other poc, and most especially white women are included in affirmative action schemes. It makes no sense to me, and I say this as a non-AA myself. I do not support affirmative action when it’s sole/main purpose is to ‘reflect’ the general population. If I were to go to America tomorrow, I don’t see why I should be included in affirmative action slots because there are no laws or practices sanctioned by the US government that negatively affected the progress./ability to progress of me or any of my ancestors (seeing as they were not living there), so there would be nothing to be ‘corrected’ by affirmative action.

    As for Lupita N’yongo, I wish her all the best and my attitude to her is the same I would have for any other black actress from any country that put forth a positive image of black women, as I believe this benefits black women’s collective image. However, I understand your point. I am Nigerian and within the past few years, there has been an influx of Ghanian and Carribean actors and actresses into Nollywood and vice versa, and I have no problem with it. However, if i got a whiff that they were beginning to be cast because of their ethnicity over Nigerian actresses, in all honesty, i wouldn’t support it either. I agree with Jalilimaster that even though a lot of these things would benefit all/most black women in term of collective image, each individual black woman has to think critically on how each situation affects her specifically and make her decisions on what she would or wouldn’t support.

    I do want to say something though and please do not take offense as it is meant in good faith. Don’t African American women bear a significant portion of the blame in terms of their being erased? The replacement of undeniably black AA actresses with mixed or racially ambiguous women is not a recent thing. This is not just in movies but in media in general. AA women have complained about it for years, but as they were complaining…..would still take their money and support such movies or support the careers of the black males that were intentionally trying to erase them. One non-movie media example that comes to mind is Soledad O’Brien. I never new she was meant to be ‘black’ until she did that ‘Black in America’ series. No disrespect to her, but was there not a single black person in CNN (msnbc?) that could have done it? Instead it was someone who is 1/4 black that was put at the helm. Now I watched some of the show, but did no one notice any difference in the way (and respect) the ‘Latino in America’ was given compared to the ‘Black in America’? Look at the show Vampire Diaries. Black women viewers of the show have been complaining since one of the earlier seasons about the storyline of the black (well biracial) actress, nothing changed, they were replied to with utter contempt from the show producers…..and yet continue to tune in. Also, I watch a lot of American media. I find it so ridiculous when I compare what passes for a black woman on tv yet her identical twin brother would never pass for a black man, because black men would immediately put a stop to it because they know what is up. I saw the recent brouhaha about Pharrels ‘marylin monroe’ album cover. He changed it from a picture of himself joking around with 3 white women to a close up pic of a black woman. It was meant to be a ‘victory’ for some but I didn’t see any. The guy has already made it clear how he feels. Stop spending useful time and energy complaining about it. Just don’t buy his stuff….simple. Why does an empty gesture of changing the cover artwork change anything? We already know the disdain that he and his ilk have for bw.

    I think the only way this will change is when more and more black women AND girls begin to deprogramme from the nonsense they have been indoctrinated with and make choices that are beneficial to them and are unapologetic about looking out for their own interests. I see absolutely nothing wrong with that. It is what everyone else is and has been doing.

    • @FoxyCleopatra,

      You said, “Don’t African American women bear a significant portion of the blame in terms of their being erased? The replacement of undeniably black AA actresses with mixed or racially ambiguous women is not a recent thing. This is not just in movies but in media in general. AA women have complained about it for years, but as they were complaining…..would still take their money and support such movies or support the careers of the black males that were intentionally trying to erase them.”

      My perspective: YES! Yes, AABW bear a significant portion of the blame in terms of continuing to spend their money to support people who are erasing them. This situation is one of several examples in which AABW’s efforts toward “solidarity” and “unity” with other Black folks has gone wrong.

      AND there’s also HEAVY resistance when people like the 1st wave BWE bloggers to corrective action and exhort BW to STOP spending their money to support people who are erasing them.

      If you read the comments to the most recent “To The Stocks” post here, you saw a number of non-AABW shriek and howl at the very idea of AABW questioning whether it’s beneficial to support non-AABW actresses like Lupita. One Hatian-origin chick was actually telling AABW that we shouldn’t even question or notice the ethnicity of Black actresses in American media—just keep our money and support flowing their way. And you saw the same shrieking and howling from SOME of the non-AA women here when AABW talked about redirecting our resources—ALL our resources—toward ourselves.

      Lots of non-AABW try to block AA women’s moves toward corrective action because it means these non-AA women wouldn’t get to eat the food off our plates anymore. It’s parallel to how many Jews and other Whites who claimed to support liberation for AAs during the civil rights movement suddenly had a problem when AAs started talking about self-determination and empowering themselves by redirecting their materials resources toward themselves.

      Then those same Jews and other Whites were scolding AAs by saying that this was “separatism” and “wrong.” Similar to how foreign BW want to scold AABW by saying that putting our own interests first is somehow “divisive” and rooted in “jealousy.” That’s called acting in bad faith.

      There’s also HEAVY resistance to corrective action from those AABW who want to keep engaging in business as usual and want to keep financially supporting their own erasure (along with continuing to support people who hate BW).

      Imma name names: Read the comment section to this post.

      Read the comment section to the above post and you’ll see individuals like Christelyn Karazin and Brenda55 talking about why they chose to financially support a movie that erased AABW like them called Redtails.

      When questioned about her choice to financially support her own erasure in Redtails, Brenda55 did what a lot of AABW do when challenged about hypocrisy and the contradiction of SAYING that you support BWE while simultaneously FINANCING BW’s erasure: She pretended not to know or understand what BWE means. And then start asking for “definitions” of BWE. As if the basic concepts of reciprocity and BW putting their own interests FIRST AND FOREMOST hadn’t already been discussed ad nauseum for YEARS. On blogs that she had been reading and commenting on for YEARS. That’s also called acting in bad faith.

      Anybody who sees that AABW bear a significant portion of the blame in terms of their being erased should NOT have a problem when AABW like me call for corrective action and say to other AABW: Stop caping for Lupita. Stop caping in general. Stop giving knee-jerk support to anybody, including other Black-skinned people, etc. That is, if that person is acting in good faith (as you seem to be—smile).

      • I remember Brenda55 specifically from that whole episode and that is part of the mentality/attitude I am talking about. The whole ‘Red Tails’ fiasco was sort of the starting point of when I began to make a conscious decision to no longer bother to engage with some bw online or try to change their minds about stuff. I wasn’t surprised that there were bw who could not understand the simple concept of not financially supporting bw’s erasure, but the fact that a lot of them were black women who I was quite familiar with in the bwe blogosphere. That was around the time that I came to the conclusion that a lot (most?) bw were not going to be ‘saved’….including those who may actually believe they were empowering themselves. Brenda55 was the one person of goodness knows how many that stood out to me and I still remember up till now. On one site I remember her commenting on (can’t remember which one), I recall her saying that she did not want her husband to lose respect for her and she knew her dad would be upset if she didn’t watch the movie. At the time, I remember thinking that if the tables were turned and say for example someone did a movie about the civil rights era and decided to make up stories where the black women were partnered/married to white guys and the black men were written out, would her dad feel the need to ‘support’ the movie for her sake and would her husband lose respect for her dad if he chose not to support it. I see on Halima’s site, someone shared similar sentiments.

        As for the Jews that were angry about AAs keeping their resources in-house, that is utterly laughable. How the heck did a group that makes up 2% of America’s population be so over represented in media? They were afraid that others would do what they too had been doing. For the record, I see nothing wrong with Jews supporting themselves. I think it is something that blacks could actually learn from. I remember watching a documentary a year or so ago that was to do with old Hollywood. There was this Jewish studio exec and every time he would hire a Jewish person or influence a Jewish person to be cast, he would say/demand that they give a portion of their first pay cheque to a Jewish charity. Also, considering the fact that he would generally only hire Jewish people. This reminds me of a comment Donald Sterling made in his Anderson Cooper interview and everyone seemed to ignore it and brush it under the carpet. I saw some snippets of the interview on tv and in criticism of Magic Johnson and trying to imply that Magic Johnson hadn’t done much for black pple, he said something along the lines of “look at Jews, when we get successful, we try to help our group, but bm when they get successful, they don’t do anything for blacks.” A lot of bp presume that other folks haven’t noticed this. Everyone can see it!

  22. It feels goods to keep my money to me and help only those that help me.
    I live in Chicago and here is the home of the Johnson publications that produce magazine that have more black entertainers. A certain publication next month in June is going digital and no longer will have print copies. Since the sales of the print have been dwindling , then to save face they are going digital. Most of these magazines have been fund off the backs of Black Women. But the kicker is that most of these publication titles have “save our men” or “save our sons”. Not once that I remember seeing anything of “save our girls” or “save our daughters”. So we didn’t matter for a long time but we have blindly funded foolishness for DECADES. I have a friend who married and is now divorced an African man. He told her that the family didn’t want him to marry her because SHE WAS GOING TO TAINT THE BLOODLINE!!
    She is in her mid forties and she has 2 teenagers of her own so the likelihood of her having children will be slim to none. But she went on collect a fee, er I mean married him. They are divorced but he managed to make sure his children who brought over from Nigeria to make sure they had a place to stay before he vamoosed. This is also some of things I have stopped completely:
    1. Unless you are family and I give according to my discretion, you will not get one thin dime out me unless and I do mean unless it is an emergency.
    2. I will not offer financial support to nonAA blacks who feel my time and purse belongs to them.
    3. Black men THAT IS A BIG HELL NO!!!! I have family members who have help me so I GIVE TO THOSE WHO GIVE ME SUPPORT!!
    4. I will only volunteer if it help advance me. I will volunteer if it will help ne enhance a skill to bring me into a social circle of like minded, positive people.
    5. I will find ways to earn extra money and PAMPER ME ALL DAY LONG.
    Summer is coming and I want my mind. body and spirit to be ready and I will put my best foot forward.
    I am not saying that I won’t give, but I will always this question, “HOW WILL THIS BENEFIT ME?” I will only give my time and money to entities who have given back to me and made sure my image was a positive one.
    Stay neutral and stay stealth.

    • ‘2. I will not offer financial support to nonAA blacks who feel my time and purse belongs to them’

      You shouldn’t offer financial support to ANYONE who feels they are entitled to YOUR resources.

  23. Hey! First, let say thank you OLS. You’re blog has been very educational and helpful, especially in sorting out my feelings about feminism and media representation of AA BW. For all my twenty-eight years, I felt something was “rotten in the state of Denmark,” but I lacked the eloquence to articulate my misgivings about the aforementioned issues and issues I see in the BC. However, your writings perfectly express my sentiments, and also challenge me to critically think on other issues.

    Also, I would like to thank Khadija, Evia, Halima, Betty, Faith and others for providing critical analysis and solutions for BW. I stumbled across BWE blogs approximately one year ago, and in that one year, I have made serious strides in getting myself to the good life.

    OLS, I have remained neutral for many things this past year. For example, I did not cap for the 300 missing Nigerian girls. I’ve been accused of being heartless and selfish for remaining silent on the issue, but I just do not see why I should work myself into a dither when I see that Nigerian Americans are not doing so over this situation. More importantly, I’m a little sickened to see AAs worked up over the 300 missing when the same AAs do not give a damn about the atrocities our own girls face each day. Millions of us are missing. Where are the campaigns for our girls? Do you see non-AA blacks worked up over the atrocities AA BW face? When I point out the lack of concern regarding our girls, I’m either met with crickets or with accusations.

    As for the 12 Years A Slave kerfuffle, the Oscar awards really drove home the point Khadija and yourself were making. The first “AA” movie to win Best Picture was directed and starred in by foreign blacks. I truly felt AAs were robbed that night. We are the ones who endured racist Hollywood and fought to open doors for blacks to portray honorable roles. Yet, our hard work culminated into nothing.

  24. “As for the 12 Years A Slave kerfuffle, the Oscar awards really drove home the point Khadija and yourself were making. The first “AA” movie to win Best Picture was directed and starred in by foreign blacks. I truly felt AAs were robbed that night. We are the ones who endured racist Hollywood and fought to open doors for blacks to portray honorable roles. Yet, our hard work culminated into nothing.

    ^^That is the bottom line, AA’s take the arrows, make the inroads and due to not setting boundaries others are benefitting. With the current trajectory we are on as a collective, we will become a minor footnote of our own history.

  25. When I read these posts here, I smile. You know why? I have been noticing for years, maybe for a decade that AABW are being erased in the media. When I’d say something on TV blogs, people would think I was nuts.

    I am not biracial; I am a black woman, I look more like Rosario Dawson than Regina King, but I don’t think that Rosario Dawson should be cast in parts that call for someone like Regina King. I don’t think that if you’re one color you shouldn’t play whatever part; but what bugs and scares me is that it seems that Rosario Dawson/Zoe Saldana/Vanessa Williams/Halle Berry/ are the ONLY actresses playing AABW on TV shows. To me, that’s not right.

    A few weeks ago, I saw the movie “Belle” starring Gugu Mbatha Raw. I had no problem with her playing that part, because she was playing a British woman and she is British. But I asked myself a question. How would British people feel if say, Rosario Dawson played Belle? How would British people feel if Regina King played Naomie Harris’ role in “Skyfall?”

  26. Not to derail, but I think this story is worth mentioning as a tragic example of when all that much-bragged about achievement by immigrant-origin children goes horribly wrong. I’ll just say this one comment about this story.

    “High school student, 17, ‘caught cheating on exam jumps to her death in river'”

    “Omotayo Adeoye was caught peeking at her cellphone during a test at New York’s High School for Math, Science and Engineering on Thursday afternoon”

    “The humiliated teen went to the bathroom after her teacher yelled at her and never returned”

    “The South Bronx resident instead jumped into the Hudson River and has not been found”

    I have no idea if this girl was under any pressure to achieve by her parents or anybody else. Obviously, the WW [Russian-sounding surname] teacher who screamed at this child needs to be punished. But the tragedy does bring up an ugly underside to all these stories celebrating immigrant-origin students’ academic achievements.

    Friends and I have talked about “how much academic pressure on one’s children is ‘just right.'” The widespread modern AA attitude of accepting/accommodating refusal to study and the academic mediocrity and failure that results from that is obviously dysfunctional.

    My impression of things is that even old-school AA parents—who cared a LOT about academic achievement—almost never pressured their children to the degree that is apparently acceptable in many other cultures. THAT degree of pressure for academic achievement has just never really been our “thing: as a people. Old-school AA parents had high academic expectations for their children and put pressure on them to study, but rarely to the degree that’s okay in other cultures.

    Which is why I’m not an admirer of how much pressure many immigrant parents put on their children. Because there doesn’t seem to be a happy medium.

    A Korean personal trainer I had told me about how his buddy would literally tell his kids the following when they brought home any grade less than As: “Do you want Daddy to commit suicide?” Even more shocking to me was that the trainer didn’t seem to perceive this as extreme and emotionally abusive behavior on his friend’s part. {smh at that}

    • Khadija:

      I am glad you posted that story. Extreme’s just aren’t healthy. Telling a child that you don’t care if they get an F isn’t healthy, but telling your child that “everybody will die if you don’t get an A” is dysfunctional too.

      Healthy parenting is about knowing your child’s strengths and weaknesses and about being realistic. I had a college roommate whose father picked her courses out for her, she always got D’s and F’s in those courses, so what was the point? Her dad wanted her to be what HE wanted her to be, not what she was. Don’t know if that makes sense.

      Regarding “Sister Soldiers,” I saw a very interesting episode of MTV’s “Catfish” this past week called “Lucille and Kidd Cole.” An AABW named Lucille got scammed by an AABM con artist who called himself Kidd Cole. Lucille heard some of Kidd’s music (turned out it wasn’t really HIS music) and contacted him. He told her he was on Kanye West’s label and he convinced her he was legit and wanted her to handle some of his business for him. Now, the whole thing turned out to be a scam, but what got me was the “Sister Soldering” that Lucille was doing for this clown. First of all, she had never physically met the guy, second, if someone asks you to do things like hire a limo and security, you don’t use YOUR credit card; you ask THEM for a credit card number. That’s how you can tell they’re legit because if someone’s in the business they have an expense account that would pay for things like that. But Lucille, the “Sister Soldier” had to do it all herself. It was sad, and a cautionary tale for AABW who thing that doing all that soldering will get them where they want to be, it doesn’t work.

  27. I was thinking on the great comments of this particular post and I love all the comments and how a lot things are being exposed to help AABW remove the scales from their eyes. I see BWE making terrific strides because as more and more black see the light and TAKE ACTION, things are going to pick up even more. Today is June 1, a Sunday and I can place a wager that 95% or more of AABW are preparing to go to church or some place of worship. Our schedules go a little something like this:
    Sunday: Church
    Monday -Friday: Work. May a 2nd job. Maybe in school. I am not against education. I feel we worship worship. I feel that we seek education at the expense of gratification. The purpose of education is surround ourselves with better but if we are not perfecting our personal lives, then we will be the most educated, lonely woman because we are social beings and it is not healthy to be all work and no play. We can’t be all play and no work so we do have to have a happy medium. I feel that we use school and church as a means of not honing our social skills. Oh yeah, then they con I mean state that it is godly to give your time and service to God. Well I usually see Black women signing up for something. I am not talking at pre dominant black church, even at diverse churches. If you ask a Black woman her dreams it usually is tied to form of “help” ministry. It is either in some form of back breaking, emotionally draining fields like social work or health care. I am not saying anything wrong with these fields because they are needed. I know that black women tend to more of the foot work and labor work while non-black tend to be in the supervisory positions. I was watching a spiritual program where a ww women stated that she her husband dreams were her dreams.
    If you ask a AABW her dreams. It is some tied to “helping” a DEAD COMMUNITY. I don’t mean to be off topic, but these post turn up the fire under my feet because I have been having BUYERS REMORSE on some things because I am a caregiver to my mother. My father is still living and taking care of her and I help my father. I have a brother and sister. So those comments earlier how bm sons in particular don’t give .02 for the mother that birth them, I can relate. So I am scaling back a lot and One Less Soldier and Khadija and all the other comments have been extremely helpful and healing.
    My eyes have been opened and I have been making the changes needed and will continue to do so. Thank you OLS for all the great work your are producing.

  28. Not that anyone here sucks at the teet of patriarchy, but here is Malcolm Gladwell’s take on Black American/African American vs Other types of Blacks.

    This is illuminating:
    “If Noel’s business takes off, Rosie says, she would like to move to a bigger house, in Garden City, which is one town over. She says this even though Garden City is mostly white. In fact, when she told one of her girlfriends, a black American, about this idea, her friend said that she was crazy–that Garden City was no place for a black person. But that is just the point. Rosie and Noel are from Jamaica. They don’t consider themselves black at all.”

  29. I use to say you better smile when you call me Black!!!!!!

    BWE bloggers gave me clarity and sanity…

    In late 80s I devoured everything (movies, books, lectures, art, etc) that sang the praises of the people who held from the “dark continent”. I anyone of African descent from Ghana to Haiti to Brazil to Jamaica; from blue black to damn near white as kith and kin and an extension of me. Their achievements were my achievements; their frustrations were my frustrations. If my “family member” needed assistance I was there. If you needed some money and all I had was dime rest assured you had at least a nickle from me. I fashioned myself as a ride or die Pan Africanist. I was proud to be Black!!!! (Im Black yall Blackie Black yall) I loved me so thus I loved my people and believed that there was nothing we couldn’t do if we put our minds to it and the “Man” got out of our way. I celebrated my race from Africa and the disapora, I never just focused on my ethnic group, if you will.

    I remember a conversation with some Irish people protesting how they weren’t white but IRISH- “we’re not from America but Ireland. So we’re not white!”((((mind blowing)))). Then I got it It became clear to me that in some peoples minds “white” and “black” are labels solely for those Americans who happen to be either European or African who have been here for 3 generations or more. So in a sense “Black” and “White” are American ethnic groups to be viewed differently than ethnic groups coming from Africa or Europe or Latin America. I started to understand the recoil from a Nigerian or Puerto Rican or Haitian when you referred to them as Black and how they would quickly correct you. This began to explain why in my friends’ conversations with African male students they had NO PROBLEMS dating indiscriminately a white girl or a sistah because they saw both groups as Americans only good for sex but not to be taken back to the family. I remember not being able to wrap my mind around and being offended how they could clump us in with these chicks. We’re Africans!!!!!!! Their response was, ‘no you’re not. You have more in common with whites than with us’ {{{{soul crushing}}}}

    But after carefully reading and rereading Khadija’s blogs and her book (of course I bought the book) (LOL) and a few other bloggers– It clicked. OLS, I was guilty of embracing whole multicultural thing in hopes of instilling pride in and soldiering for all Africa’s children who might have unwittingly swallowed the poison that people of African descent had nothing contribute to humanity. I accepted Tiger Woods and Jennifer Beals (who in article i read in Ebony back in day said she only claimed being Black for the first time when applying for college) in spite of their comments and selves. I supported our ebony hued bruh Wesley Snipes movies (until…) I felt guilty when I didn’t give a helping hand to someone had been historically subjected to white male supremacy (afterall that is the issue that unites PoC). I ignored the fact that the other “PoC” (black men white females, Africans; Asian et al) have more privilege than any Black/African American woman. I ignored the fact that none of these “PoC” came looking; fighting; helping or rallying for AA/BW. I ignored until the BWE bloggers forced me to see that ignoring these things were a premature death for me and the people I professed to love. I was unwittingly participating my erasure by those to drank my wine and eat my food but harbored contempt for me and my ilk. No thank you ma’am
    to be continued…

  30. Both of you ladies are very welcome. We have been the torch bearers and battering rams, going through with the soft side of our heads first for so long. It makes no sense to go so hard for these foreign born Blacks/others when their disregard and disdain for us is palpable.

    They DO NOT like us and do not want to be associated with us. When are the vast majority of Black American women going to get this? Stop marrying these foreign born Black males who are only in it to get their entire village over here so they can all get their green cards, I even had an African hair braiding lady ask me if I would sponsor her children! So they all think we are an infinite piggy bank of resources, money and time… ripe for the picking.

    We show up for everyone, we stan’d for those 300 Missing Nigerian girls, and lets be clear, the one or two Nollywood stars did NOT join the movement and “get on board” until after the movement became popular and it had already gained steam by Black American women. Only to be ultimately usurped by a White woman. Its a shame till it aint even funny.

    This has to stop. BAW are in a unique position of being perpetually picked last for dodge ball. No one wants us on the team but they want us to buy the uniforms and equipment.

    If we took 10% of the energy we expend on others, do you know how much further along we would be? We get it, this is just more preaching to the choir. The larger mass of Black women willfully do not get it and will always choose to never get it.

    We are all doing our best and I talk to the younger preteen ones. Thats where we can begin to see some change. Everyone else, is playing dumb because its easier mentally to do so.

    And I hope every noticed how nasty these foreign born Blacks on both threads turned nasty when we held our ground and told them their slick asides would not be tolerated.
    Let that be a lesson, they will turn on us and take our resources with them cause they never gave a damn in the first place, They only came to snatch and grab and dismiss. I hope that was made clear for everyone paying attention.

    • They act like white women!!!! thinking that they are an authority that we must listen to and that their words carry more weight than ours on our personal issues and that we should all damned if, we don’t march to their orders. Also, they waste a lot of time.

      We don’t have to listen and shouldn’t, but we should keep our eyes open and watch and learn the signs because the ambushes will only get more sophisticated as we fall or stumble less and less. We have the power to change things ladies. We can direct our dollars, create what we want to see for ourselves, we can establish businesses that appeal to all so as to broaden our base, we also control our boundaries and what we will allow in our presence. We have a lot of work to do, but we can get it done and will.

      Everyday I do more to act in my own self interest and surround myself with people and experiences that up lift me. It is not always easy, but is always worth it. Never settle for less than what you truly deserve and desire cause those other things will take up space and block what you should have.

    • @Soul Alive,

      You said, “We get it, this is just more preaching to the choir. The larger mass of Black women willfully do not get it and will always choose to never get it.

      We are all doing our best and I talk to the younger preteen ones. Thats where we can begin to see some change. Everyone else, is playing dumb because its easier mentally to do so.”

      Never despair that you’re preaching to the choir. There’s always a large silent audience of lurkers that are quietly reading these blogs without ever commenting. I know, because I was a silent lurker for several years before I ever sent in a single comment anywhere.

      I was a silent lurker pondering the new ideas I saw at blogs like Evia’s, Halima’s, Sara’s and Aimee’s sites. In fact, I was still in my Black Nationalist trance at the point when I first started reading these blogs. I knew there were grave problems in the AA collective, but I hadn’t really taken the time to re-examine the Black Nationalist ideology that I had bought into decades before as a teenager.

      I will note that I wasn’t a Black Nationalist because I hated others. I simply wanted my own AA tribe to have the good things that others have. Things like racial and ethnic self-respect, functioning communities, and so on.

      It took:

      (1) the Dunbar Village Atrocity (which is a crime against humanity—a truly death-camp level of atrocity that AAs generally never engaged in before now);

      (2) the profoundly selfish, self-absorbed and uniformly irresponsible comments of so-called “conscious” negro males at Black Unity/Black Love blogs like Ruminations of a Racial Realist; no matter how horrible the violent crimes and murders committed against BW by BM, these “conscious brothers” would yawn and continue whining about WM’s victimization of [conquered slave] negro males; and

      (3) the uncontroverted common sense of the earliest BWE/BW-IRR blogs

      to snatch the very last rose petals off my glasses.

      I silently thought things over and realized that:

      (a) BM had LONG since abandoned taking any responsibility whatsoever for the “community;”

      (b) AA males had checked out/threw the deuce on the “community” back in the 1960s—ever since the walls of segregation were lifted;

      (c) the AA males that live in AA Black residential areas mostly live and function as scavengers not providers; and

      (d) that AABW’s continued involvement with the already-dead AA “community” would only increase the number of soul-murders and physical murders suffered by AABW and AA Black girls.

      But I had been reading and thinking over the indisputable points raised at the pioneer BWE/BW-IRR blogs LONG before I came to the above-noted conclusions. The indisputable points raised at the pioneer BWE blogs prompted me to silently question whether it made any common, logical sense to continue with my unreciprocated devotion to a “community” that doesn’t give a d*mn about me or any other AABW or AA Black girl. If I had continued to remain silent online, none of these pioneer bloggers or their readers would’ve had any way of knowing the huge impact their messages and conversations had on me.

      I’m saying all of this to say that the conversations at blogs like this one aren’t just preaching to the choir. They’re raising the consciousness-level of large numbers of silent audience of lurkers.

      The attitudes ARE changing, here’s an example of a blog site writer complaining about that shift.

      {chuckling} As the very first commenter notes, it’s not that the comments are getting “angrier” at Clutch Magazine (of all places), it’s that “the comments in that article and others reveal a shift in the attitudes of black women away from non-reciprocal relationships with groups or individuals who are indifferent to or undervalue us or don’t promote our interests, and redirecting energies towards our own growth and advancement. It’s funny that when black women adopt the same self-interested thinking and behaviors that all other groups naturally have always exercised, it’s suddenly a shock to people.”

      • I witnessed that, it was epic, and sad at the same time.
        It’s a bitter thing to realize you’ve been wrong about something for which you’ve worked so hard, something which you cherished.

        But it was also instructive: Once you realize you’ve been bamboozled, you don’t plug your ears, you don’t hug the lie more tightly.

        You dump the junk and move on, right away! (And tell anyone still-deluded, who will listen) 🙂

        • @Foreverloyal,

          You said, “But it was also instructive: Once you realize you’ve been bamboozled, you don’t plug your ears, you don’t hug the lie more tightly.”

          “You dump the junk and move on, right away! (And tell anyone still-deluded, who will listen) :)”

          Exactly! That’s is, if you call yourself an emotionally mature adult. There’s no shame in admitting a mistake. There’s no shame in changing your mind in light of new information. Elijah Muhammad was correct when he said “a wise man changes many times, while fools never change.”

          The whole process of rethinking all of that was extremely painful. As painful as the concurrent discovery that “Mooz-lim” AA negro males had turned Sunni (orthodox) Islam into an even more extreme mirror image of all the things that are wrong with the Aryan-worshipping, White supremacist version of Christianity that prevails in too many Black churches. These Sunni negro males had simply exchanged their submission to WM for submission to Arab and Pakistani men. I grieved over all of that.

          [I previously had no idea this was happening until my enlightened, self-respecting ex-Nation of Islam imam retired, and then I started looking for a new mosque to attend. At around the same time I started reading the horrific online accounts of the madness that prevails in AA negro mosques.]

          When I finished the grieving process, I moved on and moved forward. 🙂

          Unfortunately, too many AAs choose to plug their ears, cling more tightly to the error in judgment/mistake, and chant “La-la-la-I-Can’t-Hear-You.” This is the path to individual and collective destruction for those who choose that response pattern. Nevertheless, God respects free will and so do I.

  31. “We show up for everyone, we stan’d for those 300 Missing Nigerian girls, and lets be clear, the one or two Nollywood stars did NOT join the movement and “get on board” until after the movement became popular and it had already gained steam by Black American women. Only to be ultimately usurped by a White woman. Its a shame till it aint even funny.”

    That is patently untrue (the part in bold), and I suspect that you know this. I first heard about this incident a few days after it happened, almost a whole month before it became ‘news’ in Western media and before people started protesting. I had been seeing it on the twitter pages of several Nigerian friends (at the time, with the hashtag #bringbackourdaughters). What made the Nigerian government (who I admit, are useless) pay attention was when several Nigerian celebrities started speaking out about it. However, what made them act, or pretend to act, was the international embarrassment the Nigerian government felt due to their inaction. This was the typical black folks reaction of being more concerned with the opinion that non-blacks have of them than of actually doing the right thing. Before many people outside of the country heard of this story, several Nollywood actresses publicly ‘called out’ the First Lady (who is an idiot), for what they saw as her inaction. In the past, the First Ladies always made their husbands look better, this current one does the opposite…….and she sounds like an illiterate. I mean, this is someone who had two protesters for the kidnapped girls arrested because she felt that they ‘made her look bad’.

    There were many ‘protests’ going on all over the place, several in the UK as well. I admit that one of the first thoughts that crossed my mind when I started hearing some white Hollywood celebrities being so aghast about it was that had these girls gone missing in Chicago, would they have gotten so worked up about it. I see it through the same lens as I do when they adopt babies from Africa, but were far less willing to adopt Black American babies. They are seen as a bigger ‘white saviour’/mother Theresa, when they adopt one from Africa (& get far more publicity).

    I’m not saying that people should not have shown concern for these girls, I just give a side eye to anyone who is willing to do more for the child 10 blocks away than the one right next door to you. Also, these are terrorists. I question what and how twitter campaigns are supposed to dissuade them. If the issue is misogyny (it really isn’t, they are just Islamic extremists who want to impose Sharia law), then there are many (black) girls in the west who suffer from the effects of misogyny day-in day-out, yet I don’t see many people trying to do anything for them. Black girls go missing every day, yet the media ignores it, it never makes the front page (which is not the case when white girl§ go missing). So I just call bs on the attention that they decided to pay this one.

    So to my original point, there are many criticisms that can be laid on this, but there is no need to make things up, especially when there is no truth or fact in what you are saying!

    P.S: I don’t want anyone to interpret this as me saying that what happened should have been ignored, far from it. I just think that many bw (whatever their ethnicity) are so used to any sort of bg/bw suffering being ignored, that when the media Western media decided to pay attention to this one, they were so happy that finally some missing bg’s were being paid attention to. It was the same way there was so much wailing after Sandy Hook, but during that same period, several (black) youngsters had been murdered in Chicago and Oakland(and these weren’t gang members), but their deaths weren’t seen as any real tragedy.

  32. To Khadija, I see some change yes, but I also see lots of backsliding as well.

    And to Jalilmaster, no I did not know that wasn’t true. I did a cursory search on Google and didnt see any mention of Nollywood stars until after I first saw it on a BWs page. I can admit if I am wrong, I apologize.

    My larger point still applies.

  33. I will mention that I just saw a piece on the news about the richest actors in the world. Tyler Perry was about number 7, worldwide ! Worth $450 million. So basically, he made his money by shredding bw’s image, and most of his money came from bw’s pockets, because we all know they are the ones that have been supporting this creatures career.

    To all those that prefer to moan and whine that others don’t want to include you in their stuff, imagine if half of the bw who supported this fools garbage actually supported the positive images of bw out there, and actually created their own content, imagine how things could be. And it is not just AA women that support him. I have met quite a few bw in the UK and other parts of Europe who go out of their way to watch his movies. I once told a former flatmate of mine, when she said that she watches his films because she wants to support black ‘talent’, that had it been specifically bw from your ethnicity who he was portraying this way, would you still be as wilfully blind to what he was doing. She had nothing to say in response. Note that when it was time to marry, he managed to, in all of America, find an Ethiopian woman to marry (I don’t know if they married or were just engaged). You know that he wouldn’t dare portray Black Ethiopian women in the same way, despite his familiarity with being in a relationship with one.

    I remember when the Asian wife of Maury Povich (he hosts ‘The Maury Show’, a hood version of trash types one would see on The Jerry Springer show) said that she told her husband that if he ever had an Asian person on his show, she would divorce him. And true to form, he has never let an Asian person come on his show and embarrass themselves. The same with Jeremy Kyle. In the UK, the vast majority of his shows guests were working class whites, or more specifically, chavs. When he moved the show to America, most of the people on the show are black, and you know that it’s intentional. These images go out around the world, so it is not a small thing when people try to run your image down in the media. I have started to notice how some white folks would make racial comments about a particular black group, more often than not AA, then throw in some compliment to or make a positive comparison with another black ethnicity, as an excuse for their racism. And these black folks are too dumb too see that it is not about you, or them viewing you positively. It is more about the black folks that they want to attack/insult, and you are giving them a buffer to claim that it’s not about race. I have heard several white British comedians make these racial jokes, but aim it at AAs, to make it look as if they are mocking ‘Americans’ as opposed to ‘Blacks’. There is this one young white male comedian who uses ‘Shaniqua’ as a name any time he is trying to mock black folks without anyone ‘noticing’. He knows that by doing this, most people’s minds would immediately go to ‘Black American‘, as it is a name that is associated with hood/ghetto people in the US. Or they would make offensive comments about Venus and Serena Willimas (I specifically mention them as they are quite common targets). Any time you take them up on it, their response is usually along the lines of ‘making fun of Americans’ (yet, they never seem to want to mock non-Black Americans to the same degree), or just mocking/demeaning someone’s appearance, but they don’t seem anywhere near as willing to mock white womens images the same way.

    I’m just saying this so that people can know that as more AA and other similarly situated bw become more aware of the okey dokes that they’re fed (I’m using Evia’s terminology here), the methods to bring you down will become slicker, so you cannot afford to slack, thinking that things have mellowed. It is during such ‘mellow’ periods that you have to be alert as it usually means that your enemies (and yes, that is exactly what they are) are planning something!

    I think it was Khadija that said some years ago that there are people out there that don’t want black folks to have anything. However, they have become slicker with their methods. They no longer talk about ‘black people’, but instead, talk about ‘black culture’, ‘AAs’, etc. I have heard non-AA blacks say that AAs are just jealous because white people like them more, and I just think “you fools”! When they have finished doing whatever they want to do with AAs, what do you think is going to happen to you. The same West Indians that are compared favourably to AAs in America are viewed negatively in Canada (as they are the ‘first’ blacks there), and viewed negatively compared to Africans in the UK (as they were the first blacks that moved there en masse as well). The same Africans that are compared favourably to West Indians in UK and most of Europe are viewed negatively in Eastern Asia as they are the first blacks to move there in significant numbers. Black folks in Latin America and the Arab world aren’t even worth a mention, because they are below the bottom, and I mean bottom of the bottom, if that makes any sense. So far, the only place that blacks have moved to that they aren’t acting a fool (yet) are the Africans in Australia, and part of the reason they are flying under the radar is due to the Arabs there who insist on acting like idiots, and the Asians (specifically the Chinese), who the white Australians view as a real economic threat.

    So when one black ethnicity tries to look down on another, I find it stupid, because unless I’m mistaken, black folks, as a collective, aren’t doing all that great wherever they go.

  34. I don’t see the point of creating more divisions. The article is being posed as though “foreign blacks” have some malicious contempt towards AA women, without taking up the fact that many “foreign black women” are in support of AA women. As I can respect and understand your critical take of the subject, and what you are saying largely makes sense from your position. However, the everyday nobody foreign black woman isn’t benefiting from the demise of yours or other AA women as a collective, in fact we are often implicated in your “negative image”. You are creating enemies that don’t exist.

    • If you don’t see the need for divisions you haven’t been reading the over 100 comments explaining exactly why. And unfortunately I can’t help you because its not about “making enemies” at all.

      • I’m really not looking for your help, and don’t even completely disagree with you. You write from a position as an African-American woman, so that’s what it is. However, from MY position (a Canadian black woman), I don’t think that you get the influence America has on the world (which is not shocking), and regardless of whether you can or not, the poor representations of AA women have impacts on black women elsewhere. Women of African decent read your blogs, and “see themselves” in what you are saying because they experience many of the same things. Yes there are differences based on where you live, but there are also many similarities, hence the reason why “foreign” black women are even attracted to BWE sites (some of which are created by black Canadian women). Maybe your blog should be specified as an “AAWE” site ONLY. Unfortunately, blogs like this will appeal to black non-American women, because a black woman is writing them, and saying what is being written is for “black women”… It’s confusing. I would be interested to know which black Canadian AA women are “mulishly working for”???

        And yes, I did read some of the “over 100 comments”, and can appreciate the arguments being made. However, I found it quite telling that while AA women are making distinctions regarding what and who is “foreign”, that NO ONE acknowledged that those distinctions are being made on stolen Aboriginal land.

        • If Non AA american black women can find use of my blog, I think that is great. The more black women ( of all nationalities ) the better. At the same time, I know that its simply impossible to give adequate advice for EVERYONE and so I focus on MY group, which is AA BW. But if other black women can find value with my blog that’s great.

        • Further, and from what other AABW have commented AABW do NOT and are not in the same position of having adequate support groups, or communities that actually *support* them, (that other foreign black women may have) and so there are numerous groups currently bleeding AABW dry and leaving them for dead, which is ultimately my main focus. You said you’re canadian, I do not, and can’t begin to tell you or any other Non AABW what they should do with their life. Their may be similarities but I certainly can speak for other groups except my own. As you said America may have some influence on the world, at the same time, I can’t say that I hear much from other countries of what has occured for the BW there. So I don’t try to. As some BWWE writers have said you can take what you want of my posts and throw away the rest if it doesn’t work for you. (That is the most important part ALL black women seem to be missing.

  35. Hi NYGF,

    For Black actresses interested in having a lead role, this is the time. No need to beg Hollywood for stereotypical roles anymore. Creativity, interesting scenario and being surrounded by mainstream actors (think Hawthorne) can be the start of something new.

    As Variety magazine puts it: “You Tube stars [are] more popular than mainstream celebs”

  36. “IF being bi racial makes you white and black, why do you think CERTAIN groups of white people ONLY want biracial people to identify as BLACK characters.” There should be no “if” in your first sentence because when someone is biracial, that’s what they are no matter what some whites or blacks say or do.

    The whites who call biracial actors black do it to get away with replacing people like you (black) with people like them (half white). It’s politically calculated to reduce the presence of blacks in media while rewarding their half-white kin for pretending to be black. When biracials allow themselves to be cast by calling themselves black, whites can avoid discrimination lawsuits cause it “can’t be discrimination against blacks” if that actor is calling himself black and some whites and blacks are pretending it’s true, right? It’s pretty clever, those whites with their one drop rule. Those whites also use biracial white-black actors to represent whites, Latinos, Arabs and others, keeping some of those actors outa work too. Maybe you haven’t noticed this trend because you aren’t heavily multiracial. Anyway, it’s definitely unfair and racist to black people. Whites and biracial people benefit.

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