What’s In a Name?

Greetings Readers,

Today I’m going to write this post using SpongeBob gifs because clearly people have proven from the reactions to the last few posts, and continue to prove daily that they’re one synapse short of a working brain.  Since spongebob seems to be universal and I’m determined to make it so easy a caveman can do it.

One phrase I continue to see splattered across the internet is the word “ally”.  People calling themselves “allies”, people claiming to be “allies”, people claiming they need “allies”. Yet, among the majority of the population of black women young and old, I notice that very few people actually can go about correctly identifying one.

* Note: To Khadija, Faith, Halima, and Evia I know that you all have talked about this topic in your own forums multiple times.  Please feel free to post those links in the comments section if you’d like to/ have the time.   I am in no way trying to erase what ya’ll have done. Your comments in this forum have helped greatly.

As I’ve said before there are plenty of BWE writers who have clearly written on this topic

http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/2014/07/african-american-women-they-hate-you.html

http://www.blackfemaleinterracialmarriage.com/2014/07/ucc-news-views-july-7-no-im-not-making-excuses-for-bm-black-women-must-stop-being-the-grunts.html

http://actsoffaithblog.com/allies-and-opportunists

http://sojournerspassport.com/pay-attention-to-nuances-when-black-people-say-they-%E2%80%9Cdon%E2%80%99t-understand-what-black-means%E2%80%9D/

I’ve attempted to broach the subject of black women getting screwed by self-serving groups

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/05/06/ah-benevolance-the-trick-is-to-make-you-think-its-for-your-own-good-when-really-you-wind-up-as-empty-handed-as-before-bwif-103/

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/05/18/the-dance-is-over-and-you-dont-owe-them-a-thing-bwif-104/

Aside from that, I’ve spent my entire blogging “career” writing about black women who get okey doked by the same groups over and over, and the importance of STAYING NEUTRAL to serve your own best interests and yet many black women continue to get PLAYED.

By foolery like this Time Article ( I will not link find it yourself)

Dear Black Women: White Gays Are Your Allies, So Don’t Push Us Away

Or they continue to be played by events like this

http://www.clutchmagonline.com/2014/07/straight-racist-casting-straight-outta-compton-biopic/

http://www.clutchmagonline.com/2014/07/wendy-williams-executive-produce-aaliyah-biopic-alexandra-shipp-cast-lead-role/

And express thoughts, lament all over the internet their hurt feelings  that they couldn’t believe that what I have said happened actually happened. And cry about the allies that never were.

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/05/04/the-trick-is-to-make-you-think-that-everything-has-changed-when-really-you-havent-moved-a-damn-inch-bwif-102/

It appears that the majority of black women fail to comprehend this very basic concept.

Or completely miss the point.

LOL spongebob spongebob squarepants omfg patrick patrick star fuck yea the lid

So I will try to explain this very simple concept and hope that somebody somewhere will be able to firmly grasp the idea of what an “ally” actually is and actually does.

* Side note:  To the dissenters  who think their insipid, and ill thought out remarks are helping the conversation, to the people who live outside of the USA and can’t firmly grasp the concepts and issues that AMERICAN BLACK WOMEN have: Please take your attempts at “saving us from groupthink” or giving “fresh prospective” elsewhere.  BWE was set up by a group of women who already had their tenets established. If you don’t agree with these tenets that is absolutely fine. But THIS is a blog that does. You are not helping. You are NOT providing us with any great philosophical debates. This is not an open forum where people throw out random ideas that have nothing to do with the actual topic or have been proven to hurt aa bw. If you disagree fine but the people that clearly are only here to stir up trouble, and the willfully stupid/ perpetually surprised can GO. NYGF does not want you here. Further, I don’t care about your platitudes, what Confucius says, hell I don’t even give a damn what the fox says. I am only interested in helping black women in PRACTICAL ways. If YOU cannot apply it, fine. But do not tell me other women can’t use those techniques. Or that they are simply crazy.

Take your fortune cookie life strategies OFF MY DAMN PAGE.

In very pointed other words:

You are not welcome here.

Meanwhile, to the people who actually believe in the tenets that BWE founders actually established let’s get on with the post.

To clarify I decided to go straight to the dictionary since plenty of people have attached connotations to this word that would make Webster turn over in his grave.

al·ly

[v. uhlahyn. al-ahy, uhlahy]  Show IPA

verb (used with object), al·lied, al·ly·ing.

to unite formally, as by treaty, league, marriage, or the like (usually followed by with  or to  ): Russiaallied itself to France.

to associate or connect by some mutual relationship, as resemblance or friendship.

Likewise here is the definition of alliance.

al·li·ance

[uhlahyuhns]  Show IPA

noun

formal agreement or treaty between two or more nations to cooperate for specific purposes.

merging of efforts or interests by persons, families, states, or organizations: an alliance 

between church and state.

As you can see the basic definition of an ally and alliance have to do with FORMAL agreements, they are a MERGING of efforts and for people with LIKE INTERESTS. That can benefit BOTH PARTIES.

It does not involve CAPING for someone who never agreed to RECIPROCATE for YOU. It does not mean laying out the red carpet for people who have not proven that they will ever return in the future. It does not mean laying out the red carpet for people who simply have a “ likeness”  to you. Or will separate from you at will. It does not mean laying out the red carpet for people who wouldn’t piss on you if you were on fire. And it certainly doesn’t mean refusing to follow the money trail first.

I continue to see black women refuse to follow the money trail or fact check and they watch as their lives crash and burn. 

spongebob

And I’m not simply talking about black women’s overwhelming compulsion to support/ serve self serving “ new black”  celebrities wannabe  “ feminists” and their crew. I’m talking about women who pour their resources into people in their personal lives only to find that they were left empty handed.

I’m talking about black women who support any cause for the sake of being as other authors have said “Progressive” meanwhile those groups virtually pump and dump black women once they’ve gotten what they wanted.

I’m talking about black women who’ve sacrificed their health, wellness, safety, sexuality, representation, lifestyle and existence, in support of the lifestyles of people who will NEVER put their money where their mouth is.

I’ve also noticed that there are a group of black women  are perpetually played by groups of people who don’t know or care about BW’s strife/ troubles and fall for their lies that black women should put others before themselves.   These groups have got a great scam going. They effectively have numerous plates spinning and are able to zap black women of their resources with all manner of excuses.

I am here to tell you that it is not NOBLE.

Let’s be real for a moment. It is not noble, likable, or admirable to “cape” for groups who don’t pay up.  People do not respect you. And the smart ones know exactly which trees to tap to get syrup.  Don’t be the tree.

http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/2014/07/african-american-women-they-hate-you.html

I’ll also take it one step further since I know that some of the black women here are Christians in some way. The bible doesn’t take providing for others, while not keeping you and your family afloat lightly. In fact I read a very good article that I think other black women (if you are religious that is) might find valuable.

http://www.revelation.co/2009/01/14/how-should-christians-respond-to-people-taking-advantage-of-them/

It’s about what to do when you are being taken advantage of.  Some black women think they’re being “Christian” when they give up their lives resources for so called allies.  You are not.  The bible says you should “give one coat, when you have two.”  NOT take the coat straight of your back and freeze yourself. Especially if the person has more than you. There ain’t nothing smart or noble about being a fool. You just look like a fool. And people notice it. Which leaves you open to further degrading.

YOU can’t be an ally until you can help yourself.

And you CERTAINLY can’t have an ally until you know what that means. I see some of ya’ll walking around behaving like this

gif LOL funny spongebob spongebob squarepants patrick patrick star big pink loser

While your personal lives are a complete and utter mess.

So here are a few tips to help you identify one.  If anyone has any articles on this subject please add them.

  • An ally doesn’t need to be coerced, jabbed, threatened, boycotted, shamed into doing what they are supposed to do. They simply do what they’re supposed to do
  • An ally doesn’t bad mouth you/ shame/ degrade you.
  • An ally doesn’t take without giving anything back
  • An ally doesn’t get angry/ peeved/ upset/ gaslight you when you want to look out for yourself
  • An ally has a history of helping
  • An ally doesn’t have a history of using whichever group as a mouthpiece for their own interests.
  • An ally doesn’t use you as a leg up and never reach back to pull you up also.
  • An ally has something in common besides skin color/ ladyparts. As other BWE writers have said, all skin folk aren’t kinfolk.
  • An ally doesn’t degrade / humiliate/ taunt you.
  • An ally doesn’t sit back and watch others degrade humiliate/ taunt you.
  • An ally doesn’t make you do the brunt of the work, or watch you mule for them and carry the load.
  • An ally gives to the people they are in an alliance with.

Here’s an example, years ago my grandparents moved to a very nice area in California in the 1960’s. This was before the entire town was what it is today. During this time all the land around their house was free and un owned farm land. Their neighbors (a white couple) somehow knew that the land was being sold.  While they bought land, they never bothered to tell my grandparents who would have liked to by land that it was for sale and so my grandparents missed the chance to expand their property. Thus now it is owned by someone else. (presumably white considering the towns ethnic makeup). My mother always remarked that while those people skinned and grinned in their faces feigning friendship, they never bothered to let my grandparents in on that secret.

In other words they are not an ally. They did no lend any advice, they did not help. They smiled in their faces and betrayed them.

This is what I see happen to black women all the damn time.  Someone comes in, spins their plates meanwhile they’re going places and doing things without letting you know the deals they’re cutting with their real allies.

For black women, who appear to be the largest group getting taken advantage of. I would advise you to wait and see what others will do before signing on the dotted line. OR cut the ties you have with people draining your resources NOW.

In other words stay neutral.

Until Next Time….

OneLessSoldier

Next Post:  D for Dependency

PS. I created a Facebook account for this blog. I think since I post so infrequently here, I can post there thoughts on what I feel about certain topics concerning black women, without making a full post. Follow if you want, if you don’t want to disregard this message. If it gets too real or too troll-y I’ll probably close it though. But hopefully this will be okay.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Notyourgirlfriday/1446209385654376?ref=tn_tnmn

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238 thoughts on “What’s In a Name?

  1. The reality is this, white gay males are not friendly to Black American women interests period. They practice a level of deceit in which they used to undermined issues that pertain to our goals and heaven forbid you called them on their behavior. Regarding your grandparents situation, my parents have a similar experience, but my parents were able to purchase the surrounding house’s on both streets. As you stated before, remaining neutral is the best response.

  2. OLS,

    Thanks so much for the shout-out! I deeply appreciate your work—I think it’s a very good thing for younger AABW to hear BWE discussions led by another younger AABW. It’s a strange feeling as I watch more and more celebrities that were famous and on TV when I was a little girl pass away. My parents liked to watch The Rockford Files when it first came on TV. RIP, James Garner. Mr. Garner ties into this conversation about allies.

    From what I could tell when I became old enough to understand adult matters, Mr. Garner was an “ally” during a moment in time during the early civil rights movement. Before it was particularly safe for one’s career to do so. He was photographed holding hands with Diahann Carroll while participating in the 1963 March on Washington.

    http://www.inquisitr.com/1363342/james-garner-always-stuck-to-his-guns-when-it-came-to-politics/

    Keep in mind this was in 1963. Five years before the 1st scripted interracial White-Black kiss on TV on a 1968 episode of Star Trek, which was a problem for the network executives (from Wikipedia):

    “Also, William Shatner recalls in Star Trek Memories that NBC insisted their lips never touch (the technique of turning their heads away from the camera was used to conceal this). However, Nichelle Nichols insists in her autobiography Beyond Uhura (written in 1994 after Shatner’s book) that the kiss was real, even in takes where her head obscures their lips.[4]

    When NBC executives learned of the kiss they became concerned it would anger TV stations in the Deep South.[5] Earlier in 1968, NBC had expressed similar concern over a musical sequence in a Petula Clark special in which she touched Harry Belafonte’s arm, a moment cited as the first occasion of direct physical contact on American television between a man and woman of different races.[6] At one point during negotiations, the idea was brought up of having Spock kiss Uhura instead,[7] but William Shatner insisted that they stick with the original script.[citation needed] NBC finally ordered that two versions of the scene be shot—one where Kirk and Uhura kissed and one where they did not.[8] Having successfully recorded the former version of the scene, Shatner and Nichelle Nichols deliberately flubbed every take of the latter version, thus forcing the episode to go out with the kiss intact.”

    If a fictional kiss set in a distant future sci-fi TV episode was a problem, one can imagine the career risks to what Mr. Garner did (and others like Marlon Brando, Charleton Heston—not to mention the Black celebrities who participated, etc.) during a real life political protest 5 years earlier. [Especially not to mention comparing the courage of some of the celebrities from 50 years ago versus the total cowardice of the vast majority of today’s silent and/or “new Black” Black celebrities and athletes.]

    For that moment in time—for that ONE incident—Mr. Garner and others took the sort of ACTION that would’ve justified calling them “allies” for that one moment in time. Be that as it may, you still have to continuously watch and screen (“vet”) people. You also have to watch to see what somebody does over a period of time. Just because somebody does ONE correct thing, does NOT mean that you can automatically consider them an ally. You need to examine a person’s body of work in its totality.

    As far as my limited research into the matter goes, it appears that Mr. Garner was fairly consistent in the sorts of political positions he took. By contrast, just a few short years after participating in the March On Washington, Charleton Heston started taking extreme right-wing and downright racist positions in public. Maybe Mr. Heston was a rabid racist WHILE he was participating in the March On Washington. Who knows? And who can ever really know why people do certain things?

    But Charleton Heston is a good example of why it’s foolish to give people permanent “passes.” Much less automatically refer to them as an “ally” as if that can be determined based on one action or one moment in time.

    Given how clueless most AAs (and especially AABW) are about such matters, it’s best for AAs to remove the words “ally” and “allies” from their vocabularies.

  3. I am in complete agreement with this post. Everyone else on the planet gets this simple concept of allies and how true alliances function. This principle works in all realms of life, personal & business. Those who do not understand the difference are always on the outside looking in and ” perpetually surprised ” when they get left in the dust after doing the heavy lifting. Thankfully, blogs like Evia, Faith, Halima, Khadijah & your excellent blog are helping many bw wake up. I have noticed a change in the responses from bw regarding infringement on our rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. It seems more of us are FINALLY paying attention & implementing BWE principles in real life. Let other people fight their own battles…we have more than enough work to do on our own for ourselves.

  4. I do wonder what it is those White gay males think they have in common with Black women? I’m most certain it’s tied into the reality TV& W.orld S.tar version of American Black woman hood SMH.

    As I dig back into the archives of the BWE writers who’ve been around for a long time, I’ve become convinced you all are prophets.
    You ladies have predicted so many things that have happened and things that are happening.

    All I can do is keep reading, self work and find like minded Black women to ally myself with.

    • @chicnoir, Would like to recommend “Darline Clark Hine” history books regarding the history of Black American Women in this nation.

      • Thank you for this recomendation. I’ve added to my Goodreads “to read” pile. I’m super intrested in reading more about BW contribution to the Civil Rights movement and AA HISTORY.

    • Chicnoir,

      Thank you for your kind words about the earlier BWE writers; I truly appreciate it.

      You said, “I do wonder what it is those White gay males think they have in common with Black women? I’m most certain it’s tied into the reality TV& W.orld S.tar version of American Black woman hood SMH.”

      I think that’s a small part of it. I think the bigger part of it is that AABW are the only [unprotected] ones that it’s safe for them to engage in “Columbusing” and appropriation with. Gay WM can’t step on, talk over—and the next step is for gay WM to claim to speak FOR—anybody except AABW.

      Gay WM won’t be allowed to step on, talk over, or speak for WW, Latina women, or any other category of women.

      Gay WM won’t be allowed to step on, talk over, or speak for straight BM or any other type of straight men.

      {rhetorical question} Who does that leave for gay WM to appropriate as “mascots” of a sort?

      It’s emotionally fun for gay WM to appropriate [their distorted image of] AABW because we’re the only ones it’s safe for them to appropriate. Gay WM can’t safely do that with anybody else, because everybody else is protected.

      • @Khadeja

        Agreed

        I think one of the most foolish mistakes buppy Black women have made was when they started doing those segments(Nightline comes to mind) on how they could not find a quality man. Why blast your weaknesses to those who can use those same weaknesses against you.

      • So true even gender bending asain men don’t step on asian women coat tails. They carve out a third gender!!! Only we have these strange encroachers.

  5. Chicnoir, I have not posted here a ton, but have followed Evia and Khadijah for years and commented on their sites under a similar name. Vetting is important, and I don’t want you to think I fell off a turnip truck. Just wanted to let you know that there is another BW in Baltimore who thinks similarly.

  6. I have printed out the definitions of ally and alliances. I will do my homework assignment and memorize them. (LOL). I have noticed that everyone use this God will reward you with Black women only. Every one else expect something in return and they are good at telling black women to WAIT, WAIT AND KEEP ON WAITING. No mas, too many black churches and the black male pimps, I mean preachers have made a killing off of black women will we are killing ourselves by denying ourselves happiness. Black women are too trusting when it comes to everyone else but we scrutinize each other and have 2nd doubts when it comes to something we are involved in.
    The song back in the 70’s SMILING FACES TELL LIES. I am not sure who made it if it was the O’Jays, but they are lyrics and that holds so true today. Aside note, it seems to me that I know 3 and 4 years old have cable bills in their name because the mothers chose men who are not working and just to say they have someone. It is getting so that the families have to be vetted because it so much abuse that black women receive in the form of everyone always borrowing money from her and using her car without putting gas back in it. That list should be posted on every wall of the work and church and any place where black women frequent because that list is a must read.

  7. GREAT article OLS, and thank you SO much for the recognition of my attempts to Pay It Forward what a host of old school AA black people gave to me and did for me.

    I’ve written a lot about ON PAR RECIPROCITY. Not only must others reciprocate, but AAbw must insist that others reciprocate at least roughly equivalent to what AAbw give to these others. Not doing that is what usually leaves the bulk of AAbw on “Empty.” It can’t be ‘tit for tat’ but common sense dictates that the back and forth giving must balance out. And this balancing needs to be closely monitored on a regular basis. The old school blacks as well as the non-AAs I’ve mingled with monitored/monitor this closely. They don’t give and give to ANYONE without a significant ongoing return. But there are all types of systems set up so that people in other groups benefit from the reciprocity of each other inside and outside their group. Reciprocity is more of a fluid art than a science, but an accounting or “the books” must be kept.

    I’ve pointed out numerous times in various ones of my articles some simple analogies to help bw to understand ON PAR reciprocity. For ex., if a bw is giving someone $1 every day, and these others only give back a penny in return daily, then yeah they’ve reciprocated her, but just look at the difference. The “reciprocity system” in other groups would address this FAST, but this doesn’t occur for a typical AA women because there is no system operating for her. This difference between $365.00 annually she gives and $3.65 the other person gives is of course, enormous, so we know easily who will end up po’. I’ve never heard this addressed by even the most so-called “well-intentioned” AA leader. This is a common scam played on many AA women who’ve been programmed by their “community, their minister or programmed by their minister and their mama/grandmama,, etc who was programmed by a minister to be “cheerful givers.”

    OLS, as you and others have alluded, a lot of this willful refusal to use common sense about reciprocity is rooted in organized religion, so BWE organized religion scholars need to dissect some of this stuff.

    But, let’s go back to a crude ranking system I set up years ago to help AAbw with this. I suggested that the women think carefully about each person/group for whom they provide even small amounts of time, energy, money, support etc. and rank these individuals/groups in terms of how much overall actual VALUE these individuals bring to that AAbw’s table or the table of her IDENTITY group/IDG. BTW, the IDG is the group that shares your key VALUES and IDEALs and has PROVEN to have a vested interest in the well-being and in the thriving of your tribe for now and the long term future. People rarely ever walk away from their vested interests.Studies have shown that the longer a person invests in anything, the less likely they are to walk away from it and lose their investment. This shows that typical AA men have rarely had an ACTUAL vested interest in AA women and children and the thriving of this so-called black “community.” IDG members demonstrate this commitment to their vested interests on a regular basis and this is what uplifts the overall group and sustains it. It’s NOT based on talk; it’s based on demonstration–which means you can MEASURE it. You’ve got to be able to MEASURE it.

    But we know that is another major source of confusion for typical AA women because most AA women don’t know who exactly is in their IDG and who is NOT–SMH! They base it on “lip service,” or on what other folks tell them, or on how they “feel” or skin shade, common historical suffering, bloodline, etc. So they don’t know WHO to support or not. Anyway, the ranks I suggested that AA women assign to others: were/are High Value (HV), Moderate Value (MV); Low Value (LV) and No Value (NV). Based on that ranking system, my husband, my sons, certain family members, and selected other people have PROVEN to me time and time again that they are my HVs and my MVs. They have PROVEN to share my long term “vested interests.” I can MEASURE what they do/have done for me. I also know exactly who are the LVs and NVs.

    Most of these groups that AAbw discuss ad infinitum on various forums are straight up LVs and NVs, but AA women use so much of their valuable time and energy hunting and pecking to find any little crumb of value among these other groups! LOL!

    This is really not rocket science. It’s actually very easy and it’s the way MOST people and groups operate. IMO, a typical AA woman could and should approach this issue of ON PAR reciprocity by looking at each person/group (no matter what gender or race or ethnicity or sexual orientation) by conveying the following message with her behavior to these others. No need to be shrill or even verbal because this is usually sent by ignoring NV and LV others.

    But the following is what she needs to convey with her mind AND behavior:

    “If you haven’t brought anything to me or my IDENTITY group’s table that I can measure or will be of benefit to me/us, then you are of NV to me/us. However, just maybe I’m not aware of what you’ve done for me/us or what you’re willing to do? So I will give you a chance to SHOW me all the wonderful things you’ve done or will do, and I will measure them. We may be able to work out an on par arrangement for the future because I have permanent interests. This means I’m always willing to hear you ‘make me an offer I can’t refuse.’ ”

    I’m going to bow out here. As Khadija said, younger BWE writers and advocates need to break BWE down and spread it.

  8. OLS, Evia, Khadija, Halima, and other BWE pioneers have really provided some really good life lessons on your blogs. As the years pass, the more things click. I am beginning to see how paying attention to the amount of reciprocity in professional relationships, friendships, and romantic relationship can tell you if the person you are dealing with really cares about you. I like the idea of silence as a response to those that are of NV or LV. If you constantly talk about somebody, you are showing them how important they are to you. I feel like some of these YouTube videos, blog posts, comments, etc. discussing or lamenting what ignorant people have to say about BW only add fuel to the fire and give these fools a larger platform. For example, the Curly Nikki debacle has made that white female featured into a pseudo-celebrity, which I’m sure she’s excited about since she has been trying to promote her own beauty blog via social media. This WW has probably got thousands of visitors to her site due to the commotion created on FB, blogs, and forums by BW, and I’m sure that her and TextureMedia are in talks about how they can make some money over this drama.

    I know that sometimes it is important to dissect these issues in order to raise awareness, but sometimes these discussions paint BW as needy, desperate, uptight, etc. to outsiders and provide shine to people who do not deserve it. I wonder if there is a way to create a safe place where likeminded black women ONLY can come and hash out these issues away from the prying eyes of outsiders. I’m thinking about an online forum. You know like LHCF, but for BWE and with more stringent access requirements. It would also allow us to strategize more effectively. As the Curly Nikki deal showed, we have too many people in our business. Too many people who know the ins and outs of black culture, dysfunction, and vulnerabilities. However, ask the average black person about cultural issues in the white, Hispanic, and Asian communities, and they wouldn’t have a clue because most groups have boundaries in place to keep others out of their business. However, every non-black person knows all about or at least has an idea about the health disparities and socioeconomic issues that plague the black community. They are also aware that some BW worry about being able to find a husband despite being superwomen (e.g. good job, good money, good looking) because “good” BM are scarce and want/fetishize non-black women. Now, I understand why some BWE bloggers made their blogs invitation only. Not all conversations should be heard by everyone, and you can’t trust everyone either.

    Asking for reciprocity in your relationships really boils down to not being naive. It’s about trusting an individual’s actions ONLY and not their promises or seemingly good intentions. If a person, organization, or group actions hurt you emotionally or financially OR bring no or limited value to your life, then cut them off.

    • My apologies for this very long comment:

      APA,

      You said, ” I wonder if there is a way to create a safe place where likeminded black women ONLY can come and hash out these issues away from the prying eyes of outsiders. I’m thinking about an online forum. You know like LHCF, but for BWE and with more stringent access requirements. It would also allow us to strategize more effectively. As the Curly Nikki deal showed, we have too many people in our business.”

      I’m gonna be R-E-A-L in my response, and say some things that I normally only discuss with close friends and a handful of blogging peers. I feel that the BWE victory has matured to the point that I can now firmly emphasize some things I’ve previously played off in public.

      YES, there SHOULD be a private forum. However, it is not at all reasonable to expect anybody to take up their time with something like that for free. I’m NOT saying that you, APA, expect anybody to work for free like that. But, truth be told, that’s what the vast majority of the BWE reading audience expects. It’s a widespread AA cultural problem: AAs really do take kindness for weakness and stupidity. AAs really do expect the handful of other AAs who are kind enough to offer life-saving information for free to do even MORE work for free. That’s why some readers kept trying to give me and other BWE bloggers additional work to do: “You should do a podcast . . . You should write another book . . . You should do this . . . You should do that . . . [while I’m doing absolutely n-o-t-h-i-n-g].”

      Even though some of the folks saying this meant well, I didn’t appreciate that type of talk because AAs have a long, sordid, and ongoing history of using up the handful of AAs who try to help our tribe. Use them up, suck them dry like leeches, and then forget about them like cast-off toys. That’s how AAs collectively did Dr. King’s and Malcolm X’s widows. That’s how we did Rosa Parks.

      I saw this play out when I started doing premium content at the Sojourner’s Passport blog. I got fed up with the many lurkers who were quite content to soak up life-saving information for free, but were too trifling to even bother contributing to the conversations by commenting. I didn’t even charge money for the premium content—the “price” of admission to the premium content was a person having had a track record of regular participation in the blog discussions. I sat down, went through the online archive of all the comments submitted for the 6 months prior to starting the premium, confidential content, and saw exactly who was participating in the blog conversations.

      I was appalled by the number of individuals who pretended like they couldn’t understand what the phrase “regular commenter” meant. First, there were the bad-faith, trippin’ questions asking what constituted a “regular commenter.” Then, there were the people emailing me talking about how they “needed” the confidential, premium content—and therefore I should just give it to them even though they hadn’t bothered to participate in the blog conversations. Around 2 or 3 such individuals showed themselves to be trolls who then began sending me hateration emails when I refused to give them the premium content.

      A fairly large number of lurkers offered to pay for the premium content, but that was missing the point as far as I was concerned. For me, the premium content was about giving on-par reciprocity to those readers who contributed to the info being shared on the blog by their participation. I deeply valued their participation and wanted to show my appreciation with special content that was just for them.

      I let the “I Want Something MORE For Nothing” foolishness regarding the premium content play out without commenting on it, because I wanted to see what folks would do (without any prompting from me).

      Folks ask for private forums and groups, but most don’t want to get up off the money needed to sustain such work. Which brings me to my next point: There are already people offering BWE-focused private forums and/or groups. There groups—quite reasonably—charge money for dues. Instead of asking for more and new private groups, it would be a good start for folks to support what already exists!

      I feel that if folks are refusing to support what already exists, then they don’t need anything more. That’s just how I, Khadija, feel about things. Other BWE bloggers’ mileage varies on various issues. And that’s perfectly okay.

      Evia, blog host of Black Female Interracial Marriage ezine has been running a private group. I feel totally comfortable vouching for her because I’ve talked to her; and I’m familiar with her track record. So, I would strongly urge anybody who’s serious about participating in a private group to contact her about possibly joining her group, and becoming a dues-paying member. Over the years, I’ve made this suggestion before when the topic of “next steps” come up.

      http://www.blackfemaleinterracialmarriage.com/

      I’m aware of another person offering a private forum/group, and that’s the woman who runs The Black Woman Think Tank. What I’ve been sent from her publicly available work has been good. I can’t vouch for her because she’s new on the scene, I don’t know her, and I’ve never talked to her. But I CAN comfortably recommend that folks who are serious about doing the private group thing check her out. She’s apparently hosting a free event—which could help folks figure out whether or not they feel her group would be a good “fit” for them. I feel that those who find her group to be a good “fit” should join and become dues-paying members. See her Facebook page for more details.

      https://www.facebook.com/blackwomanthinktank

      The BWE movement 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. With each day that passes, more AABW are waking the heck up and rejecting non-reciprocal relationships and interactions.

      As BWE’s victory becomes entrenched, the supporters will continue becoming increasingly sophisticated and savvy in their outlook and REAL LIFE behaviors. A large part of this is making the transition from lip service to actual practice. A lot of folks flunked that test by running out to support their own erasure by supporting the Red Tails movie.

      A large part of going beyond lip service is for more BWE readers and supporters to put their money where their mouths are. And start paying for the forums, products, and other pro-AABW services that they claim to want. Women from other ethnic groups understand that in the real world you have to pay for what you need.

      • I agree completely Khadija. I would also advise black women who have or want to have their own private groups/ pages/ communities to be very careful about the people who join. Even the ones who pay. Just a quick story. I’m an author so i have a tumblr page, and recently got a new follower. Out of curiosity I clicked on the profile of the person and it took me to their page. Now, I write interracial fiction and mostly reblog posts concerning black women. I noticed that this person was bm who posted somehwat sexual photos of mostly non white black women. I was flabergasted. Why would this black man follow me on tumblr? Most men aren’t reading women’s fiction or interested in bw’s issues so I wondered wth this man could be doing on my blog. I came to the conclusion that these men are simply here to see what they can see black women doing and go and tell others/ cause trouble later. Like the men on the CLUTCHMAG website. Those men clearly hate bw they don’t care about their issues and they are misogynistic. Same goes for the ww who decided to invade the cirlynikki website with her own “natrual hair” (lol) experience. I have to wonder what her angle was. (most smart people saw it was money). To black women hoping to start a blog or page. Even if the people pay. VET. Some are there simply to know what you’re doing and throw a wrench in it. I’m considering blocking this user on tumblr. Might be too much but *shrugs* I’m not taking any chances. There will always be a reason why *some* people would go to a blog completely unrelated to them and waste their time, and most of these people are not there to lend fresh perspective. Especially to bw. Be careful

        • OLS,

          You said, ” I would also advise black women who have or want to have their own private groups/ pages/ communities to be very careful about the people who join. Even the ones who pay.”

          I 100% co-sign your entire comment. It takes a LOT of work to police a website/forum/private group, etc. in order to ensure a safe environment. There are oodles and oodles of lunatics and haters out there. Just because the lunatics have learned (the hard way via law enforcement in some cases) that it’s better for them to remain quiet does not mean that they’ve gone away. Let’s just say I held onto many of my online tools from back in the day when I was actively blogging. Some of the freaks that I’m aware of are STILL haunting my retired and semi-retired blogs. From the things these freaks say in other venues, I can tell that they’re STILL haunting other BWE blogs, including this one.

          I’ll mention a few things I discussed in detail in this post:

          http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/2009/08/table-talk-for-activists-part-7-open.html

          If you’re going to be a responsible BW online host, you need to be prepared to—at minimum:

          (1) Keep track of the trolls’ IP addresses and geographical locations;

          (2) Maintain a log of print outs of the trolls’ comments (whether you publish them on your blog or not—you need to keep a file on these nuts);

          (3) And most importantly, be prepared to call your local FBI field office, local law enforcement, and local law enforcement in the troll’s jurisdiction THE MOMENT the troll submits a comment that you feel is in any way threatening!

          In terms of any offline gatherings that you sponsor, I would strongly urge you to hire security. As an additional step, I would urge event organizers to hire a private investigator to film and photograph EVERY Black male that:

          (1) Seeks entry into the event (since they have no legitimate reason for being there unless they are an invited speaker); and/or

          (2) loiters around outside the event; and/or

          (3) appears to be watching who’s going in and out of any event that you’re sponsoring.

          Some of the Internet Ike Turners/Bitter Black Males might not be bold enough to try to physically crash your event; but some of them will want to conduct hostile surveillance on the BW who attend your event. You need to watch the people who are watching you. This is what law enforcement agencies do in terms of filming activists at protest marches.

          Ladies, remember Asia McGowan. Get professional and get real about your own safety and the safety of your guests.

      • Khadija, i have looked at her BW Think Tank facebook page. And while I mostly like what she is saying. Something did jump out at me and I wondered at your input she says

        And we do not cater to nor are we beholden to any of the other “BWE” ideologies or constraints. We take what we want from each, and discard the rest.

        Now I respect the neutrality. All my readers know that I’ve been talking about that for a long time. At the same time I sort of feel as if she’s slapping in the face people like you guys who have actively worked to make it even possible to have those blogs. *shrugs* maybe its just me. But I can take neutrality, i can’t take using. Not even an acknowledgement to the blogs who laid the groundwork and the concepts that she didn’t neccessarily create Not sure if that makes someone a good ally. Maybe i’m reading it wrong. I’d appreaciate yours or faith or evias input on that.

        • OLS,

          Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!

          YES, I saw that “diss” when I recently browsed the Think Tank woman’s Facebook page. It p*ssed me off. Nevertheless, I’m still willing to send business toward other BW on the chance that a large part of what they’re doing might actually be helpful. You take what’s helpful and dump the rest. Because I’m not petty. Which is why I chose not to say anything about that “diss” unless and until somebody ELSE brought it up. So, THANK YOU for mentioning that.

          I’m happy that the BWE movement has matured to the point that we can publicly have these conversations. Some matters are better discussed in private. Some other things are better discussed in the cleansing sunlight. What the Think Tank individual did by disrespecting the previous BWE bloggers who laid the groundwork That. Made. Her. Paying. Audience. Possible is unfortunately standard-operating-practice among too many AABW. AAs have a shameful habit of denigrating whatever and whoever came before us.

          It’s one of the things about Gina’s work over at WAOD that bothered me from the very beginning. And let me say—yet again—for the record (because I try to be meticulous about giving credit where it’s due) that I deeply appreciate Gina’s early work at What About Our Daughters. Her coverage of the Dunbar Village Atrocity is what first snapped me out of my complacent Black Nationalist trance. But her knee-jerk disrespect of our civil rights elders never sat well with me. Because: (1) even with all their many mistakes and flaws, those “civil rights industrial complex” folks made the things we enjoy possible, and (2) even with all their many mistakes and flaws, those “civil rights industrial complex” folks were a zillion more times successful in their activism than ANYTHING that ANYBODY nowadays has been doing.

          I don’t know if this Think Tank individual is a user and opportunist like Christelyn. It’s too early for me to tell. I don’t have any problem with people being compensated for their work. I DO have a problem with exploitation and betrayal. For now, I’m willing to look beyond that “diss” that you spotted, and send business to the Think Tank individual. Because large portions of what I’ve read thus far of her publicly available work are helpful in serving AABW’s interest. It looks like it’s worth checking out.

          Another reason why I’m willing (for now) to look beyond that “diss” that you spotted is because I believe in the general principle that people aren’t ready for anything new unless and until they support what’s already available. But, it also gets back to what’s been discussed in this post: You have to screen (“vet”) people. Continuously. Doing one good thing does not merit a blank pass. There really shouldn’t be any blank passes. Folks have to keep their eyes open and observe.

          As always, everybody’s mileage may and does vary. I’m only speaking for myself.

        • Thanks for your thoughts and I agree. I had one more comment and you can let me know what your opinion on the matter is. Re people charging for premium content. I understand completely why black women do that. At the same time, I would like to warn black women to watch out for people who right off the bat start charging money without putting up any proof that what they are saying is Original ie not somebody elses concepts and that it is actually helping. I’m not specifically talking about this BW Think Tank either. Because I have seen some posts on that facebook page that may be helpful. But I also have to stress a wariness of people, any people, who come out of the woodwork (especially concerning black women) then start charging. I understand why you and the original bloggers are charging. You guys have a record of proving that you have put BW’s collective interests. You have a “calling card” so to speak. And a reference point. I guess what I am saying is that while yes black women should be paid for their labor and their efforts don’t fall into the old track of giving your money to charlatans only in it to make a quick buck in some get rich quick scheme (like steve harvey). And remember to fact check before spending money and definitely research. Don’t get exploited.

        • OLS,

          You said, ” But I also have to stress a wariness of people, any people, who come out of the woodwork (especially concerning black women) then start charging. I understand why you and the original bloggers are charging. You guys have a record of proving that you have put BW’s collective interests. You have a “calling card” so to speak. And a reference point. I guess what I am saying is that while yes black women should be paid for their labor and their efforts don’t fall into the old track of giving your money to charlatans only in it to make a quick buck in some get rich quick scheme (like steve harvey).”

          I agree. There are nuances to this charging money regarding AABW’s interests issue. LOTS of nuances. And a HUGE need to exercise discernment. Let me again emphasize that I’m only speaking for myself. And speaking in terms of how I happen to view things. Other people’s mileage can and really should vary.

          I think the 1st step is for every individual woman to figure out what is her primary, secondary and even tertiary priorities in various scenarios. My 1st priority when looking at anything that claims to be in support of BWE principles is safeguarding the integrity of core BWE values. My 2nd priority when coming to sites like yours is to support the BWE work that you’re doing. I come to BWE-centric websites and other things primarily as an activist who wants to protect, support, and advance the BWE movement.

          Enjoying BWE-centric sites and materials as a consumer is 3rd or 4th on my list of priorities. I primarily come here to support your work because your work supports the BWE movement. Even though I greatly enjoy blogs like yours, I’m not coming here to be entertained. That happens to be a pleasant side benefit of visiting many BWE-centric sites.

          How all of this plays out in terms of my actions: (1) If I see somebody doing something that I believe works to sabotage the BWE movement, I’ll speak out about it. (2) If I see somebody doing something that appears to serve and advance the BWE movement, I’ll support their efforts unless and until new information comes to light that changes my mind about the net value of what that person is doing.

          In terms of safeguarding the BWE movement’s core principles (preventing people from deliberately getting it all twisted around), I’m always wary of people who suddenly appear out of nowhere. And who don’t have any sort of track record as commenters, guest bloggers, or any other sort of past participation on BWE-centric sites. This is me viewing things through the activist lens. That’s not necessarily how I view things if my primary priority is to come somewhere as a consumer.

          As a consumer, I’m willing to take chances on a new voice—even if it appeared out of nowhere. But there are limits with that. Anybody who is not an already trusted source gets heightened scrutiny from me as a consumer when they’re trying to sell me either: (1) something that is expensive (relative to my personal means), and/or (2) trying to sell me an idea that could have major bad results if it turns sour. I’m more willing to take chances as a consumer with things that don’t cost much (relative to my personal means), and with things that won’t hurt much if they go wrong. Everybody’s mileage does and should vary with this. Because everybody’s living in their own individual set of circumstances. One size can’t possibly fit all.

          My personal concerns with the notion of private groups and forums mostly revolve around privacy and security. Before I joined anything, I would want to see assurances and reasons to believe that the person running the group will act as a responsible administrator with my private and/or personal information.

          Everybody’s mileage varies. I personally don’t like situations in which “preaching” is the only means that a person has to feed themselves. In other words, I don’t like situations in which preaching is a person’s sole or even primary source of income. Because what all too often ends up happening is that: (1) The sincere-but-financially-dependent-preacher is no longer free to tell the flock what they really need to hear, and instead tells them what they want to hear. Tells them things that will “tickle their ears” and keep them sitting in the pews. (2) There are no checks and balances other than the cash register on the corrupt-and-greedy-preacher. Because it was all about money from the very beginning.

          In the online context, when I see a website that’s so chock-full of ads and pop-ups that you can’t even read the articles, I click away. Because the owner’s choice to have that kind of set-up lets me know what they’re all about. People don’t have to do that—that reflects straight-up greed as far as I’m concerned. You make money online by building up an email list of people who are open to receiving information about your products when they come out. The saying is true: the money is in the email list, not in ads. In the indie fiction writer context, here’s a post that discusses that in detail.

          http://davidgaughran.wordpress.com/2014/07/23/building-a-killer-email-list/

          In terms of the sincere-but-financially-dependent-preacher, the pressure to feed the flock Kool-Aid-flavored rat poison isn’t just coming from the preacher’s financial worries. It also comes from the flock members who want to be coddled in their dysfunction. I saw a few BWE readers try to pull that at my blog when I angered them by talking about obesity issues. They thought they were really threatening or punishing me by saying they weren’t going to buy my book. They didn’t like it when I told them NOT to buy my book. My money does NOT depend on AAs. Never has, and never will, God willing.

          I’ve seen disgruntled colored women try to pull the same “I’m not going to buy your book because I don’t like what you’re saying” threat at other BW’s sites. Meanwhile, these same colored women spend shopping bags full of money in support of DBR negro males who insult them. Without angst. And without a care in the world.

          That sort of mess is another example of why activism or preaching or any sort should NOT be the preacher’s sole or even main source of income. As an AA, you should never make your livelihood vulnerable to the whims of other AAs.

          As a consumer, I’m willing to take a chance on new voices. I’m willing to check out new things, and to help support new BW-owned business ventures. There are very few people or products that I’m willing to vouch for. But I am willing to encourage folks to check out other BW-owned businesses. Especially those that appear to be BWE-centric. Nevertheless, everybody MUST do their own due diligence, figure out their own priorities regarding any particular product, website, or service, and do what works best for THEM as individuals.

        • Thank you for your input! And I agree. I think black women need to pay attention to this comment. For those who are reading, when reading new sources just make sure you proceed with caution! I also agree with you that websites with tons of ads should send off a red flag.

      • Khadija:

        Thank you for the suggestions! I’ll do some investigating and start contacting folks, and yes, people always like suggesting that some people do more work (especially for free). I asked the question because I am interested in how BW, specifically me, can create more of these forums. In the beginning of the BWE, there were a lot of blogs that allowed for these types of discussions, but some of the blogs that were around in the beginning are no longer active. I understand that at some point the bloggers need to move on and pursue their goals and interests in their real, offline life, and I respect their right to do that. However, when the blogs become inactive, it’s almost like a void is created, and it’s one that I would like to fill.

        • Well before She had the BWTT, she had her personal page where she doled out advice. On a few occasions, Faith pointed out to her that the long time bloggers had already gone over those points.

          So she had her personal page and announced that she was creating the Think Tank and would kick anyone off of her friends list who did not pay by a certain date.

          She did so, and a few months later came back with the public fan page which is awesome and useful. My hesitation for paying was how she handled the initial launch and her sort of “relationship” with the Bed Bath and BeyondBlack & White blogger.

          I had a feeling that I would be taken for a ride. I may be wrong, but the fact that they were so… simpatico gave me pause.

          Does she have useful information? Yes. Is it anything that the original BWE bloggers in some form or another have said and Black women would have known if one did their research? Some of it, but most is not something I haven’t heard the founding BWE mothers say before.

          Overall, I would say do the free event and if you like it, pay the $45 monthly and take it from there.

  9. I immensely appreciate all of the pioneer BWE bloggers. I gained such an education from Khadija, Evia, Halima and Saras Love and Spice I think it was. There was also a very brief but amazing blog called Dbr Alert. http://dbr-alert.livejournal.com/900.html. Linked here is a great entry on talking Black, marrying white aka getting Black women to guard dog for BM.

    And before her current stance, I was completely into Gina from WAOD. She did some amazing work early on. I thank all of these great, innovative, brave Black women who lead the way to the newst amazing bloggers/writers such as OneLessSoldier and Breuklen Bleu (Black Woman Think Tank)

    In regards to allies, its hard for BW to set boundaries and have standards because so many BW re afraid of being unliked. I’ll expound on that in a more detailed comment separate from this one.

    • Soul Alive,

      THANK YOU—I truly appreciate it!

      I’ve been tracking down some of Sara’s posts for some of the younger/newer audience members to sample (because she was one of the pioneer BWE bloggers whose work helped me when I first snapped out of my previous Black Nationalist trance). One observation she made during a blog post stuck with me years after first reading it. She talked about how many BW are like the BW during slavery days: stuck on endlessly crying over a BM slave who has LONG since been sold “down the river” and is NEVER coming back!

      Here are some links to some of Sara’s posts.

      “Black beauty through the eyes of white and black men….”
      http://interracialloveandspicebysara.blogspot.com/2008/12/black-beauty-through-eyes-of-white-and.html

      And a link to a page that has several posts.
      http://interracialloveandspicebysara.blogspot.com/

      When I started blogging, I wanted to pay it forward in gratitude for how much the pioneer BWE bloggers (Sara, Halima, Evia, Focused Purpose and others like Arlene of Black Women Vote!) had helped me with their essays.

      A handful of the earliest BWE pioneers like the ones I mentioned above did the earliest ground work that made today’s mass awakening among AABW (and similarly situated BW from other ethnic groups—Halima is a Caribbean-British BW and Arlene is of West Indian heritage) possible. I’m very thankful for their efforts! 🙂

  10. Everytime I here the word reciprocity the name Esmin Green come to mind. http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/07/01/waiting.room.death/index.html?eref=rs How this could have been me. I’m not sure which pioneer blogger (I think it was Khadija) brought this story to her readers attention, but it was a game changer for me. I cleaned house. Changed churches, eliminated family blood suckers and reexamined my lifestyle and who was in my circle and why? Some people were confused by my changes. Oh, well.

    You Pioneer BWE blogger didn’t have to do any of this. You could have kept all your jewels to yourself, yet you chose to share with strangers. I am seeing a change in younger black women. They are turning the corner slowly, yet they are still turning it. Thank God for you ladies!

  11. Just stopped back in to say the following and I too must apologize for the length. Whew!

    @APA– You said:

    “I know that sometimes it is important to dissect these issues in order to raise awareness, but sometimes these discussions paint BW as needy, desperate, uptight, etc. to outsiders”

    I AGREE!! This has been one of the hardest things for me–as an old school woman to do–to discuss OUR business on Front St. To old school folks that I was raised among, that was one of THE worst things you could do. LOL! So, despite me saying a lot in these forums, I STILL don’t say “everything.” I just can’t. It was completely ingrained in me as a child to not blab my personal business or anything that would cause me or my group to be viewed in a lesser manner. That was considered “uncouth, low class, betrayal of the group.” So, I’ve tried to take the high road in discussing these issues. Another thing is that since I’ve lived all of my adult life among middle class and higher others in other groups, I know that they also have much dirty laundry and underbelly stuff, but as an outsider, you’d never know it BECAUSE they don’t blab it around you. They DO have or convene private places where they talk about their “stuff” with each other. They know it brings down both their personal and group value to publicize their underbellies. So you have to live among them to KNOW the underbelly of their lives.

    @APA, Khadija, OLS–

    There needs to be a PRIVATE forum for bw–of some sort–because most people have the need to mingle on an ongoing basis since human beings are social animals. It’s totally normal to want to interact with like-minded others and socialize in a lighthearted manner inside a socially safe environment. But I’m not in favor of a forum where AAbw will continue forever to mainly WALLOW in anger or “business as usual” mess. There needs to be a place for AAbw to develop and reinforce a new MENTALITY as well as devise strategies and tactics for MOVING ON towards living well personally and to benefit others in their IDG.

    As some of you know, I created the MICOMSA (social and support) Network that I intend as the foundation layer for the establishment of intentional communities in various locales for those of like minds with similar lifestyle goals. Other groups of average people belong to exclusive (though usually invisible to others) networks/clubs/organizations where they engage with likeminded others. I believe that these kinds of exclusive networks are critical at this juncture for SOME bw who are trying to separate from the usual surrounding social cesspool–because while they’re separating, they still have normal social needs to mingle with others who share their value-set and viewpoints.

    In MICOMSA, members donate subscription fees quarterly, and in order to get to know each other, in the past–we had MANDATORY bi-weekly large group chats using GoToMeeting call/meeting program. Attendance was required for approx. 9 months to get to know each other and there was offline interaction too, in some cases. Some members meet in their area to socialize. Some meet to travel, etc. I employ a slice of transparency in Micomsa since we’re a social connection network just like the Red Hat Society. There is nothing to hide. There are common sense rules (precepts) that are strictly ENFORCED. There hasn’t been any conflict that I’m aware of because Micomsa is a place for social connection and support. The Micomsa women live all around the country and we currently have one member in Europe. Since this was my first time doing this offline and I didn’t know what to expect, I did next to no publicizing. The maximum number that have joined Micomsa in the past year has been approx. 25. Some have left, inspired to work on various personal goals.

    Women of all groups have always had social clubs and networks, including AA women of the past. Micomsa does not exclude on the basis of ethnicity, nationality, or race and there are a variety of ethnicities involved. Members DEMONSTRATE reciprocity and they promote and protect OUR interests on an ongoing basis, (and this is monitored). As I said, we’re a social connection and support network similar to the Red Hat Society. I had a Micomsa Retreat at our farm last September and 15 women from all over the country came and we had a wonderful few days together talking, laughing, dancing under the stars, eating group meals, and at one point, we all jumped in vehicles and drove caravan style to another state together.

    I’m currently revamping Micomsa into a social connection subscription network, which will enable members across the country (globe) to get to know others of like minds, common value-set, and lifestyles in their general area. At this point, we don’t have a “daily” discussion forum, but there is a Micomsa private site for discussion that houses lots of pertinent info and articles, where anyone can connect and talk about whatever they’d like. I have to emphasize that Micomsa has common sense rules (precepts) that are enforced.

    However, if you’re still angry or mired down in any of the various sordid aspects of the black “community” and need to heal or purge the poison or grieve, then Micomsa is NOT the place for you at this time. Take the time you need to get it out of you. It’s a process; it can’t be rushed.

    I must emphasize as I have on my Ezine that in 2014, typical AA women must stop looking back and dwelling on the madness of business as usual stuff. Look forward ONLY. VET everyone. Pick your battles carefully. Ignore ALL NVs and virtually all LVs. Enforce your boundaries with EVERYONE. ALWAYS insist on ongoing On-PAR reciprocity. Do NOT blab. Investigate and pursue all appealing options. Promote your self interests without apology.

    Darren and I have been out of the country on vacation over the past 10 days, but I heard at a festival the other night–a quote from Nelson Mandela (in a tribute to him) and it applies to many of the people-pleasing AAbw who seem to be waiting to get “permission”–to live with all their might. I paraphrase the quote: “You were not born ‘to be’ free; you were born FREE.”

    • Thank you for the info Evia! MICOMSA sounds like the safe place for BW that I had in mind. Do you mind providing a link for the membership page? I looked at your website and tried googling it, but I couldn’t find anything.

      In your second to last paragraph, you wrote:

      “Look forward ONLY. VET everyone. Pick your battles carefully. Ignore ALL NVs and virtually all LVs. Enforce your boundaries with EVERYONE. ALWAYS insist on ongoing On-PAR reciprocity. Do NOT blab. Investigate and pursue all appealing options. Promote your self interests without apology.”

      I feel like these should be the commandments for the BWE movement. If every BW followed these rules, a lot issues that we struggle with would be resolved.

  12. I came across the writings of OLS, Khadija, Evia, Sara and Betty about a year ago, just shy of my 27th birthday. In all honesty, the work of these ladies has changed my life in many ways. Especially in the following ways:

    1) BWE pioneers taught me girl game. I was rather rudderless in dealing with men in the past. I knew what I wanted (marriage, children, middle class+ lifestyle), but I had no idea exactly what to look for in a man nor what to expect out of a relationship. Unfortunately, the men of my family serve as examples of what NOT to look for and mom believes in being “nice” to everyone, regardless of how they treat you (she is the ma dear of our family). Thanks to these ladies, especially Evia, I’ve learned what qualities to look for in a man, the appropriate timeline of a relationship and most importantly, that setting boundaries and standards with men is okay. While I wish I started sooner than my late twenties, I am now actively seeking quality, marriage-minded men.

    2) Before a year ago, I never considered owning my own business. I simply never had the interest. However, thanks to Khadija sounding the alarm about the economy and the need to have a side income stream, I am now set to open my own business in 18 months to 2 years.

    3) The ladies of BWE made me face things in my personal life that I did not wish to. I am the eldest and the only black child of my father. My father did what so many black men do, which is marry a black woman when they starting out and struggling only to kick her (and any resulting children) to the curb for lighter pastures once the black man achieves. Once my father achieved attending status, he left my mom and got together with an Asian women of dubious reputation, even though my mother, his wife, stood by him through most of medical school and his residency. I went from being my daddy’s princess to never receiving a phone call or even a birthday card. In fact, he had absolutely nothing to do with me for 17 years. I never wanted to acknowledge why my father cast me down, but the BWE ladies extensively laying out the pathologies of BM and the BC forced me to face the real reason behind my father’s behavior. Color.

    As for “allies,” AA BW must remember that true allies only form from true reciprocity. I feel that there are two ideologies behind the capping behavior so many AA BW exhibit. First, AA BW mistakenly believe that if we are nice to others, they will be nice to us; operating under this mindset is utter foolishness. Where did being “nice” get us with BM, with Latinos, with every group that want our resources? Kicked in the teeth. There is nothing wrong with being nice (I prefer the term polite), but we must place ourselves at number one and be willing to pull the rug from ANYONE who abuses us. Second, for some reason, AA BW believe that we the lowliest of the low and approach allies from a place of inferiority. Approaching out of inferiority allows others to spit in our face as we seek their validation. AA BW need to develop racial and ethnic pride. Lastly, AA BW need to remember that alliances do not have to last forever. We can come together with people over one issue and avoid those same people on other issues. For example, while I disagree with many of their other ideologies, I stand with conservatives and others on the issue of illegal immigration and amnesty because I feel this issue adversely affects my group. Sometimes, you must take on strange bedfellows to protect your own interest.

    • Regarding Point #3
      Just to be clear, I am not angry nor bitter regarding the circumstances of my life. In all honestly, facing the real reason behind my father’s abandonment has truly helped me. After acknowledging the truth, I was finally able to let go emotionally and gain closure. Facing any truth is painful at first, but is ultimately cathartic.

      • @DiraD

        Just to be clear if, you were you’d have every right to be. Being put in such circumstance can be fatal to ones growth. The fact that you can even talk about it so calm and clear is a testiment to your strength and grace. It is his loss that he has missed out on affective your life and can take no credit in your rise.

  13. As a young, Black woman, I am new to reading BWE. A friend introduced me to BWE after I left Black Nationalism. And from what I am reading, I like the message of BWE. More Black women in America and in the West need to heed the message and stop supporting groups that don’t reciprocate, need to find quality men that will provide for her and her children and start valuing and loving themselves.

    I left Black Nationalism because I realized that it was for Black men mainly and how Black women are used as sacrificial lambs, mules and mammies to keep the ”poor” ”Brotha” from ”da evil” White man so that he could get himself a White woman. Plus many of the things in it just didn’t add up to me. I was constantly disrespected by Black men in the movement and out so I didn’t see the need to ”sacrifice” my time and energy ”saving” people who don’t care about me. Also Black women were ostracized and called sellouts for dating outside of their race yet most of these so called pro Black man dated outside of their race. And most of all, I was tired of being something I was not. I am not a race woman but a unique individual with talents and interests like everyone else and I deserve respect like everyone else.

    And I didn’t get that respect in Black Nationalism.

    Reading BWE blogs like this, Muslim Bushido, Evia and others made me feel much better about myself and made me realize that I deserve respect and love just like everyone else. I am not anyone’s sacrificial lamb or mammy. I am me.

  14. APA—I hope you won’t take this the wrong way, but I think it would be best for you to set up a separate private “discussion” forum because it seems that you and maybe some others want to or need to dissect these issues on a daily or regular basis in a way that MICOMSA women no longer need to do. The typical MICOMSA woman enjoys being a part of like-minded others in her IDG, but she has “graduated” from the need for constant talking, so there isn’t much discussion at all. We simply have an “understanding” about these topics that goes beyond constant dialogue because we already know the score. I’m specifically saying that because you mentioned the “void” if there’s no place to talk and share views. You are welcomed to join MICOMSA, but you might still feel that void because there isn’t constant talk, though we do hash out certain issues sometimes.

    Okay, I want to mention a few other things in general that were referenced here.

    In a private discussion last night, some of the MICOMSA women brought to the forefront the TIME Magazine article (referenced above) re Gay WM supposedly stealing AAbw’s “CULTURE,” and that whole brouhaha and I had to admit to them that I hadn’t even bothered to read the article because to me —and I’m just speaking for me— it’s total STUPIDITY for AAbw to be mentioning certain groups by name and telling them, in effect: “We (AAbw) are fighting YOU!”

    I, Evia, am NOT fighting gay wm or ANYONE.

    I don’t consider any ‘drag queen’ routine–where gay wm might mimic Beyonce or Rihanna or certain mannerisms of SOME bw–as AA “CULTURE.” I went to drag queen shows in NYC when I was in my 20s when gay wm imitated women and no one connected that to AAbw’s CULTURE. Darren and I went to a drag queen show up in Provincetown, MA last year where gay wm and bm put on a fabulous show imitating a whole host of black and white women performers.

    But OMG! Every time I turn around these days, one segment or the other of AAbw is trying to OPENLY fight just about every other group or subgroup. It’s as if SOME AAbw think we have the U.S. military behind us!! Since when???

    AAbw need to pour all of their energy into vetting and making friends and allies with each other FIRST, and then with others; AAbw do NOT need to pour energy into making enemies.

    Again: AAbw have NO allies, don’t know how to get allies, and for the most part–don’t even support each other–aside from lip service. Yet, SOME AAbw are openly declaring war on just about everybody. This is INSANE.

    I would remind AA women what my mother and many other mothers used to say:
    “Don’t let your mouth write a check that your azz can’t cash.”

    This is an INTERNAL issue. And I’m gon say this the old school way: Some AA women really need to SHUT UP and swallow their ignorance because they lack a lot of knowledge about the way the world works, but the world is not going to stop operating in the way it’s always operated simply because you or I don’t like how it operates or because you or I don’t know how to or won’t join in the flow or insist on on-par reciprocity.

    In 2014, it is not the fault of ANY other race, ethnicity, gender, subgroup, or segment that the bulk of AAbw don’t support each other, don’t VET, won’t keep the purses closed, don’t erect and enforce their boundaries, will easily suck up okey dokes, are people pleasers, do not demand On-Par RECIPROCITY or NOTHING, etc.

    Anyway, this morning, I forced myself to read the TIME magazine article and the Clutch article *sigh* about this supposed “theft” by Gay wm of black female culture. OMG, I discovered that a bw Mississippi college student sparked this latest furor about gay wm stealing from bw. So, we’re now supposed to round up the troops because of what a bw college student thinks?

    *Hanging my head in TOTAL embarrassment about this.*

    As soon as that article hit the newsstands, hundreds of thousands of AAbw should have ripped a hole in TIME Magazine for printing such garbage.They could have done that by buying a copy of TIME magazine and ripped that article to pieces and mailed it back to TIME headquarters. There are any number of ways that AAbw could have shown their outrage to garbage like that.

    But, it seems that in 2014, we have certain AAs declaring themselves spokespeople and claiming all kinds of EXTREME AAbw behavior (twerking) as a part of AA female “CULTURE.” NO! NO! and NO! This is the same way that extremely misogynistic (c)rap music was given the green light by the bulk of AAs in the 80s and 90s. “It’s our CULTURE,” they said. It’s the same way that OOW motherhood became the norm–as well as various other AA genocidal trends that are STILL being defended by AAs.

    We now have bizarro bw walking around with blond hair and the longest hair in the world that they got from somewhere and some wear it hanging below their butts or “natural” black textured hair that sticks out a mile wide. I’d guess that many AAbw embrace that too as “black female CULTURE.” NO! These are all pathological caricatures of the AABW Acting Black Crew (ABC), but a LOT of “normal” AAbw support and/or defend this mess. Then, when other folks use it to ridicule or socially shun and/or bury AAbw socially, some AAbw get angry. Well, AAbw can just get ready for more of that. Outside of the ABCs, most people know bizarro behavior when they see it.

    Beyonce and Rihanna & co are performers. They earn their $$$$$ by dressing and behaving in extreme bizarro ways in order to get attention and keep the $$$$$$ rolling in. Average bw who dress and act like BEYONCE and Rihanna & co are going to be RIDICULED because it’s abnormal to look and behave like caricatures and clowns for FREE..

    Anyway, it’s just SCARY that any AAbw who wants to say any stupid thing about any other group these days seems to be embraced by the bulk of AAbw as speaking for ALL AAbw.

    Y’all can get mad at me. LOL I’m not going to commit suicide by being a people pleaser when I know where this will lead. This is very dangerous to make wholesale enemies, have NO protection, no support, and have nowhere to run.

    Everything we say online has legs that will take it into the future because it’s being read by the world. And people will not forget that YOU said you don’t like them and that YOU said or implied you will fight or thwart them when and if you get the chance. This is what’s being implied by this level of hostility in the tone of that TIME article. Most groups of people who some bw have spoken with open hostility about will not wait for bw to attack them, they will prevent you from ever getting the chance–if they can. That’s the way the world works.

    What I’m doing here is vetting a situation that has dangerous tentacles.

    I, Evia, am not co-signing ANY of this fighting of others because AAbw need to spend ALL of their energy cleaning out the trash in their own brains and in their own houses.

    And an interesting question I had when I read the TIME article is : WHY did TIME Magazine even print this garbage??? Did they think that an AAbw college student was the spokesperson for AAbw? Or were they mocking her and presenting her as an AAbw Bizarro exhibit? Doesn’t matter now. Since some AA women want to isolate themselves so that they can commit suicide more easily and gave TIME the fodder and the green light to assist them, TIME complied..

    • Evia – You stated – rather eloquently, I might add – exactly my thoughts on the matter. CNN did a segment on the entire subject and the college girl was so out of her league when she had to argue against the gay man who wrote the piece in Time. Don’t remember names and I only lasted about a minute when I realized this was not worth my time, and “much ado about nothing.”

    • Evia:

      Well you know that I agree with you; I’m old school as well. I feel that AABW need to stop being people pleasers. We need to STOP wanting to be liked. If you’re a people pleaser, folks will not like you because they won’t be able to trust you. Have boundaries, don’t care about being liked and you will be respected.

      When I was growing up, people would say, “Black people know more about white people than white people know about black people.” Back then black people would work in white people’s homes, look, listen and be quiet. When you do that, you learn all about different types of people, how they succeed, how to find a quality mate, etc.

      I was appalled when I saw that Nightline nonsense “Why can’t a black woman find a man” because they didn’t talk about racism or misogyny in the black community; that program made it look like it was the woman’s fault entirely. I turned that mess off, but to me it was harmful because I saw AABW airing their dirty laundry to people who don’t care about us and they were doing it because they wanted to be liked.

    • Woah, Evia, you sure have some amazing points. You are right, we need to build allies among ourselves as Black women. I am trying to spread the BWE message to other Black women I know. They need to hear this message

  15. I wanted to comment on the profound impact Khadija and all the pioneer BWE bloggers have had on my life. For a long time I was one of the ‘lurkers’ on her Sojourner’s blog. Initially the quality and of the posts and the dialogue was intimidating to me. Since my own views on the same subject matters was not as well thought out and there were nuances I had never considered, I felt out of my league. Eventually I did leave a few comments on her blog and I hope they added to the discussions.
    I definitely understand what Khadija means by a lot of the readers never commenting or contributing. Never adding into the body of knowledge and just taking from it. In my opinion I do believe some of those lurkers may have been just like me and felt out of their depth, and maybe that their contribution would not be useful. I’m not justifying or minimizing why people did not contribute, just throwing out my opinion.
    Thank you Khadija, Evia, Halima, Faith, and others for everything that you have done and continue to do. Thank you, OLS for continuing in their footsteps. The intersectionality nuances your posts have added to the general BWE body have been amazing. I regret not commenting more and I hope to do so in the future, if only to give some testimonies to how BWE has completely changed my life.

    • Lynn,

      You’re most welcome, and thank YOU!

      Yes, your comments did contribute to the conversations at my blog. I hear you in terms of some readers feeling intimidated by the blog conversations. I did my best to make my blog a welcoming and non-threatening environment. As with all human endeavors, my efforts fell short of what I had hoped for. It took way too long for me to figure out to do things like the weekly “Finishing School Friday” posts that would help more readers feel comfortable commenting. My bad; I live and learn. 🙂

      And, if you’re the same Lynn I’m thinking of*, I haven’t forgotten—and I continue to appreciate—how you showed reciprocity by standing up in the middle of a hostile crowd at What About Our Daughters around 2.5 years ago to support the BWE movement that (overall) has supported you and other Black women. THANK YOU, and may God bless you!

      [*As I mentioned in another comment to this post, I have a looong memory when it comes to certain things. {smile}]

      • Yes I’m the same Lynn that is probably banned from commenting at WAOD’s because of that incident. I still read her blog from time to time, but like most of the bw here I do believe she is ‘stuck’ in soldiering and will never move beyond that. She will never except a large percentage of AA’s are degenerate and beyond saving. I would even go as far as to say most AA’s are male-identified, mysoginistic, and on this downward spiral to be on other side of the ‘peace walls’. She will never except that BW cannot shame the Black Male collective into performing their roles as protector and provider for their children and BW in their orbit. I actually feel bad for her because Gina has way more knowledge of these atrocities but refuses to admit as to the real cause; coddling BM.

        In fact I would even say in some figurative sense, the peace walls are already here in some demographics. When you have suburbs in Atlanta lobbying to become their own cities in order to be in control of how their tax dollars are spent, and universities like Duke admitting they’re extremely hesitant to recruit males who grow up in single parent homes for their sports teams, figurative peace walls are already in place.

        • The mental peace walls are here, the physical ones are coming. I mingle with a group of high class WP, several who are city planners and big in real estate. In nearly every city now, you’ll see BP and other undesirables (WW/LW, etc. who have children with BM, low class meth addicted WP, etc.) who will be moved further and further out into rural exurbs with limited public transportation while the cities will become the home of hipster, etc. WP and others who have the money and class to live there. There will be a remnant of lower classes in the cities to do the grunt work but they’ll be highly vetted. The underclasses will be out and not let out of their areas at certain times. There may or may not be fences but there will be a buffer of land at least to act as a wall. Paris and it’s suburbs are coming to America.

          The reasoning for this will be set up by willing AA BW who act a fool crying over BM criminals and continue to accept any and all dysfunction. When it happens, no one will care because too many BW will have set themselves up for it by failing to learn, listen, and be neutral. They’ll only add the failed non-BP as a way to be “fair” and also because no one with sense wants to be around meth addicts.

    • I was one of those lurkers as well. I think I found Evia’s blog first in 2008. In those days, blogs were still pretty new to me and I only spent one evening a week browsing through the backlogs of the works by Evia, Faith, Khadijah, Halima, and a couple others. By the time I got to their current writings and the comment sections, anything I might have been able to contribute had already been said. So I told all of my friends about these blogs and the great work these people were doing to encourage black women to ‘think for self’ first and foremost. Several of my friends are regular readers – don’t know if they comment as we don’t share our online names. 😉

      These blogs were like a balm to me. FINALLY, there were black women whose thoughts were aligned with mine, and introduced ideas that I had not even considered. I thought I had torn up my ‘black card’ back in the early 1990s, but through their works, I saw the small and nuanced ways I was still caping for people who were not reciprocating. So I THANK ALL OF YOU LADIES for waking me up to some new ways of thinking. Folks around me are downright shocked when I demand to know what I’m getting out of my efforts when I am asked to contribute my time or money

      Although I understand your reasoning for not allowing premium access to ‘special discussions’ to those who do not have an online track record for contributing and supporting the principles of BWE, please know that I – and I would guess others – are spreading the word to those in our sphere of influence. I am making sure the women with whom I spend my time are not playing stupid with their lives, which would inevitably spill into my life.

      That’s all I have to say for now. Peace.

    • I concur with you. I was 24 in August 2008 when I discovered BWE and I have to say, BWE basically changed the trajectory of my life. I went from the precipice of making some horrible decisions to fit in with the BC church I was a member of to starting the process of being truly free and neutral. Today, I try to pass it forward in my work with young AA BW girls.

      Thank you to Khadija, Evia, Faith, Halima, Sara, Aimee, the pioneers, and to OLS, Mrs. Glam who have taken up the torch. Your work has truly meant a lot to us.

  16. Speaking for myself only (I have to keep emphasizing that—LOL!):

    Respectfully, here’s why I’m not going to sneer at the Black college girl who [foolishly] wrote the piece in Time magazine titled “Dear White Gays: Stop Stealing Black Female Culture.”

    First, it would be hypocritical of me because I was very much like that girl when I was a college girl. Hindsight is always 20/20. Hopefully, she’ll learn not to do things like that as she matures. The same way I learned not to do things like that as I matured.

    Second, I have always had very, very mixed feelings about the “Just shut up” admonitions often given to AABW. I’m all for winning strategies. I just don’t like some of the past dynamics I’ve experienced with some of the “You should just shut up” AABW. I give this girl credit that at least her misguided speaking out was in support of BW. Instead of the usual pattern of AABW only speaking out in support of everybody and anybody except BW.

    Truth be told, for me some (much? most?) of this ties into some annoying observations I made during college and young adulthood of more than a few of the BW who would tell BW campus activists to “Just shut up.”

    I’ll say it the plain way: When some of those silent, apolitical [AABW] heifers I went to college with got date-raped back in the late 80s and early 90s, they typically had nobody else they could turn to for help except the campus activist women that they had up to that moment been telling to “shut up.” At that point in time, there were no such commonly-used expressions such as “date rape” or “stalking.” Since they were apolitical, these “Y’all should just shut up” chicks didn’t know where any shelters, crisis centers, or rape counselors were located.

    When some of those silent, apolitical [AABW] heifers I went to college with got their a$$es beat by their domestically violent boyfriends was another situation in which they would come running to the same campus activist women that they had up to that moment been telling to “shut up.”

    I thought of them as “heifers” because the ones I’m referring to were heifers. Most people are apolitical. That’s typical. Whatever level or absence of interest in political issues is perfectly okay as long as folks are cool about it, and treat other people with basic courtesy. In this comment, I’m only referring to the apolitical AABW students at my campus who didn’t have the “live and let live” attitude, and who were quite nasty toward the campus activist BW.

    I’ve never been a saint or a believer in turning the other cheek, and I have a loooong memory. I took a LOT for me to help some of these heifers when they were in crisis and had nobody else they could turn to. I was verrrrry tempted to leave one of them to her own devices when she was in the middle of her crisis . . . but I digress . . .

    I hope and pray that the college girl in question (and others like her) wake up and learn to be more sophisticated about pursuing their political interests and goals as they mature.

  17. Khadija, I’ve always been outspoken and I’ve got the lumps, bumps, and scars to show for it. LOL! I’ve taken plenty of figurative brutal butt whippings when necessary in order to express my views. Some people who may be reading here who know me offline know that. But I’ve observed that many AAbw these days will lash out like infants and are NOT able to deal with the retaliation or any of the consequences. It’s as if they don’t realize that there will always be consequences.

    And a critical difference I see here between your outspokenness during your college days and hers is that this young woman appointed herself a spokesperson not for just herself but for AAbw “black female culture” in totality and before a worldwide audience. That’s a tremendous responsibility and IMO, that’s VERY problematic–unless you agree with her, and I do NOT. What she did was reckless and dangerous and I don’t think it should be encouraged. Was she groomed for this, at all? What was the preparation? Who were her advisers? I don’t want just any AA woman or any person who gets agitated to stand before a worldwide audience speaking for me and mine. She should speak ONLY for those she represents.

    I read her article and actually went and listened to her. At no time did she say she was only speaking for herself or for a segment of AA women or anything like that. It would have been easy for her to say: “I’m speaking ONLY for those AAbw who get extremely annoyed by the way gay wm talk to them or mimic some of our behavior and styles.”

    Since she didn’t do that, the backlash will be directed at ALL AAbw. NOT okay, no matter if she did think she was doing something good.

    I’ve gone on record to denounce AAbw blabbers. It’s foolish to the max for AAbw to continue to bleat or blab all their feelings out, especially at stronger, organized groups and anger this and that group UNLESS these women have what it takes to go into battle and win. What did she win in this case? Well, maybe she and her supporters felt good that she told gay men off. One very obvious consequence of this is that more AAbw will be viewed even moreso as super-sensitive and shunned. So how much did she actually win?

    This is why I’ve advised AA women need to pick their battles CAREFULLY because we’ve seen how these loud public proclamations that many AAbw make almost always come back to bite them in the butt. And they have no hiding place.

    I certainly turn the other cheek sometimes because I can only fight so many battles at once. Therefore, I choose carefully. LOL

    And when I read her article and listened to her Huff piece, what she’s really complaining about is systemic RACISM. So, she was aiming at racism, but hit gay wm.

  18. Evia,

    Interestingly, I 100% share your views about how counterproductive—really, destructive—that girl’s article was. I couldn’t read it all the way through because I was annoyed for all the reasons you’ve mentioned while discussing that article.

    I’ll also say upfront that I’m not rallying around this particular girl. For all I know, she could be one of the arrogant new-school types that “can’t nobody tell her nuthin.'” I don’t know her. I don’t know what motivated her to do the article. I have no way of knowing whether the article was the result of misguided conclusions after giving the matter some thought OR if it was the result of yet another AABW mindlessly and emotionally “popping off” in public view. I don’t know.

    I will note that the only thing that kept me from doing something equally destructive when I was in college was my choice to follow the lead and suggestions of older, established activists and organizations. In terms of my activism regarding the South African apartheid regime, I only did what representatives of Black South African organizations asked Western activists to do (protest, march, forward statements that had been prepared by Black South African activists, etc.).

    In terms of my college activism about other issues (women’s issues, AAs with AIDs, etc.), I modeled my activities after what I had observed of the Nation of Islam’s methods. The NOI focused on taking action to help meet Black folks’ needs instead of public screeching. And so, I volunteered for a local crisis hotline, a literacy training group. During law school I found a volunteer lobbyist to work on raising money for a local African-American AIDs shelter (the Kupona Network). I didn’t strike out on my own and try to “ad lib” like this young woman apparently did. Which is most likely at least partially a result of the near-total absence of AA activist groups nowadays (and for a very long time).

    Let me stress that I’m not claiming to have been wise in my activism. There were established groups and organizations for me to plug into during college and law school. If there hadn’t been established groups for me to plug into, I might’ve done something like what this young woman did. Who knows?

    I will also note that most of what passes for activism among AAs is ill-considered and ill-conceived. The vast majority of the AAs who speak out do so in a manner that presumes to speak for the rest of us. Very few AAs speak with precision (or humility, truth be told) when addressing political issues.

    Aside from the old-school/previous version of the Nation of Islam, AA activists are not groomed or prepared in any way, shape or form. We’re not that organized. Self-appointed people pop up and start doing things. And aside from the NOI, they learn by trial and error. Which is why it has always been very easy for the U.S. government to destroy most AA activists and activist organizations. [That is, unless they’re being guided by foreign political organizations, which creates a whole other set of problems and disasters.]

    I’m saying all of the above to say that I share your critique of this incident (and similar incidents).

    I’m reacting the way I am because of the college experiences I mentioned in the earlier comment. And also because it’s safe to say that many of the AABW who will eagerly run with the “Y’all should just shut up” critique DON’T have your personal history of courage. I’ve watched too many repeated examples in which all that “We should be strategic in how we speak,” “Y’all should just shut up,” etc. talk is just an excuse for cowardice. And an excuse for many AABW’s desire to keep engaging in the same Business As Usual that’s destroying AABW and girls. [I will also note that the cowardly Crossover Negro Politicians use those same types of phrases as excuses while they do absolutely nothing to address the issues of the AA voters who supported them.]

    A person like you means one thing when you talk about being shrewd, savvy, and strategic. The legions of cowardly mammy-mules mean something entirely different when they run behind those phrases and use them as excuses for their continued muling. For just one example, variations on the “Y’all should just shut up about that” thing is something many mammy mules and Sista Soldiers say whenever other AABW mention BM’s colorism. They also pull out that type of silencing “You shouldn’t talk about this/you shouldn’t mention this/stop blabbing” phrase when it’s pointed out that so many “Black” actresses are WW’s children.

    A lot of those phrases and “memes” (to use the current terminology) are tainted as far as I’m concerned. I’ll take it seriously when coming from somebody with a personal history of courage and a personal history of actively supporting other AABW. I’ll listen and give serious consideration when somebody like you, Evia, says things like that. But those same phrases and memes are bad-faith silencing techniques when coming from mammy mules and Sista Soldiers.

  19. Khadija, you said:

    “But those same phrases and memes are bad-faith silencing techniques when coming from mammy mules and Sista Soldiers.”

    Lawdy! I think I’m the one who needs to Shut Up and pack up my stuff and go somewhere else, which I’m in the process of doing. I know you’re out there in the mix and you’ve shown your unrelenting dedication to uplift AAbw. So, I accept your view of the real deal out there. The more I hear about this plague that has poisoned the minds of typical AAbw, the more I realize how I TOTALLY do not understand and truthfully, I don’t even want to understand these “new school” AAbw. I’ve tried, but I realize I will never understand them or what they’re afraid of or what they think they have to lose.

    The other night, someone sent me some material from Black Women’s Think Tank site and the mentality she depicts as typical of numerous AA women who are desperate to hang onto any scrap of a piece of male out there literally blew my mind. Girl, after I read it, I was wasted–no mo good as my grandmom used to say. I had to go to bed fast after I read that stuff. LOL!

    Anyway, this episode with the college student blasting gay wm has been valuable to me because it has helped me to much more clearly see WHY it is that so many AAbw’s thinking is out of sync with anything approaching normalcy. If ANY AA person (like this young college student) can pop up and be embraced–whether it’s through being an entertainer, TV personality, sports figure, “pie-in-the-sky” minister, or a controversy of some sort, etc. and become the spokesperson for all the rest of us, then that “LEADER” without any leadership grooming, common sense, uplifting long term vision for AAs, and usually has self-hate and sometimes may even be mentally ill–WILL be copied. This WILL happen because AAs have NO bona fide leaders these days and nature abhors a vacuum. ALL people need leaders and WILL find them, whether any one of us approves of who they found to lead them or not. TIME magazine gave the college student a worldwide podium, so she will be recognized from now on as OUR leader or as one of them.

    This is also why many young males will continue to copy the Lil Waynes. He is their LEADER. Young and older females WILL continue to copy the appearance and lifestyle choices of entertainer Beyonce who CHOSE to legally commit to and have her children by a misogynist former drug dealer. And some Ivy League corporate type AAbw even refer to her as “QUEEN.” Lawdy, Lawdy!

    She has become a LEADER for a gazillion AAbw. No shade on her. She has a right to display her fabulous talent and choose the dna of any male she wants to produce her children.

    Unfortunately, Michelle has been gagged. And I personally can’t think of any other AAbw aside from maybe Oprah who is as prominent as Beyonce. So, lots of young AA women are going to keep their eye on her and do what their leader/QUEEN did and does.

    As you said, in former decades, AA leaders–though far from perfect–came out of organizations of some sort, so they were accountable–to some extent to a sizable segment of AAs. Whether anyone hated them or agreed with them or not, anyone listening to a spokesperson from the NOI KNEW they had been groomed. Nothing they said was by accident. It was all strategic.Malcolm X was a strategic speaker, Dr. King was a strategic speaker. ETC. There was SO MUCH more discipline. I remember how it was COMMON for black parents to tell their children that they’d better not EVER go out there and run off at the mouth in public. So if you ever had a microphone in your hand or got into the limelight in any way, we KNEW we had to be VERY careful about what we said since it would come back to bite all of us in the butt or help all of us.

    *Sigh* Anyway, y’all carry on.

    • Evia,

      Growing up in the 80’s I remember being told the same thing. My siblings and I knew, without a doubt not to ‘act out’ or say the wrong thing in large groups of white people. It was always about not ‘bringing down the race’. I’m always appalled at how BW/BGs my age and younger act in public. And I’m in my late 30’s! I also feel out of touch with the typical BW today.
      These are symptoms of the breakdown of the family structure in the Black Construct. Wisdom like knowing how to behave in certain settings, lady-like behavior, has not been passed down the generations. We now have several generations of BW who have appalling public behavior patterns, so this is what the young bg’s model themselves after.
      At this point I’m not sure there can be a mass cultural change; only individual bw distancing themselves from the ABCs and being on point in public view. There is massive pushback on all sides; particularly from the ABC ‘intelligensta’ crew and the more well off BW who model the same behavior. Maybe if enough of us become the ‘exception’, and people see us living well might be enough to spark a cultural shift. Until then, I’ve noticed massive pushback by both BP and WP as my own behavior has gotten more refined. I live in the South, so this might be more pronounced down here in other places of the country. My boyfriend and I receive plenty of dirty looks from everyone here; including people who don’t even bat an eye when they see a Black guy with a White girl! I have literally seen WM, WW, and BM totally bypass BM and non-Black women couples, but stare us down for ridiculous amounts of time in the same setting. The South still has a long way to go in accepting BW and non-Black men together.

    • Evia,

      You said, “The more I hear about this plague that has poisoned the minds of typical AAbw, the more I realize how I TOTALLY do not understand and truthfully, I don’t even want to understand these “new school” AAbw. I’ve tried, but I realize I will never understand them or what they’re afraid of or what they think they have to lose.”

      {slipping into ebonics} Guurl, they crazy. They Crazy-For-Real crazy! I don’t understand them either. But I have learned to recognize patterns with their behaviors. As you say, I’m still in the mix* in terms of still having fairly frequent interactions with (formally educated) younger, new-school AABW. I thank God there are young BWE voices on the scene who can effectively talk to this new-school generation.

      [*Although, I’m slowly distancing myself and disconnecting from that—LOL! It’s just too draining to interact for very long with the vast majority of them. The gulf is just too large, and I have to be careful to walk on eggshells when talking to most of them, because their values and underlying assumptions about how the world works are so very different from most of the folks I encounter in our age group. Let me stress that I’m not speaking about all younger AABW. I’m speaking about most of the younger AABW that I encounter in real life. There’s still a contingent of younger AABW who are sane, like-minded and have old-school values.]

      Listening to them has shown me how total and complete the collapse of the AA culture has been. AABW in our age group grew up in an entirely different cultural universe. A cultural universe that still had functioning organizations (although they were on their last gasps when we were college age), along with commonly held values and standards that weren’t so far removed from healthy human norms.

      You said, “The other night, someone sent me some material from Black Women’s Think Tank site and the mentality she depicts as typical of numerous AA women who are desperate to hang onto any scrap of a piece of male out there literally blew my mind. Girl, after I read it, I was wasted–no mo good as my grandmom used to say. I had to go to bed fast after I read that stuff. LOL!”

      {chuckling} Yep, it’s VERY draining to sift through that madness. That’s part of why I couldn’t finish reading the Time article under discussion. I have to limit my intake of foolishness and madness. I just don’t have the mental stamina for that sort of thing anymore.

      You said, ” If ANY AA person (like this young college student) can pop up and be embraced–whether it’s through being an entertainer, TV personality, sports figure, “pie-in-the-sky” minister, or a controversy of some sort, etc. and become the spokesperson for all the rest of us, then that “LEADER” without any leadership grooming, common sense, uplifting long term vision for AAs, and usually has self-hate and sometimes may even be mentally ill–WILL be copied. This WILL happen because AAs have NO bona fide leaders these days and nature abhors a vacuum.”

      Exactly! This phenomenon is something that old-school Black Nationalist organizations like the NOI understood. AAs respond to prominence. Meaning that most AAs will gravitate toward whichever Black person is given (or grabs hold of) a public microphone. Regardless of the content and consequences of whatever that Black person at the public microphone is saying and doing.

      That’s why every year the NAACP Image Awards reward whichever Black faces happen to be prominently feature on TV the previous year. None of it is about achievement or any kind of substance. It’s about prominence. That’s why Rev. Al “Hot Comb” Sharpton and others of his ilk have been successful with the ambulance-chasing/White-media-microphone-chasing model of faux activism. The White powers that be learned decades ago that they could select AA-Black “leadership” simply by selecting which Blacks they would let have air time on mainstream White media. It’s worked!

      So yes—if the White media continues to choose to give the college girl who wrote that Time article airplay, a few years from now we’ll be told that she’s an AA leader. Or, at minimum, we’ll be told that she’s an AA so-called “public intellectual” like Cornel West, Melissa Harris-Perry, Michael Eric Dyson, and others. Yep, the White media just might select this girl to be one of our future leaders.{side eye at all of it}

      One of several reasons why it’s worked is due to the AA consumers’ ongoing, decades-long, undeclared boycott of visibly Black-owned businesses. If AAs had really wanted a Black Hollywood media industry (like the one Latinos have), we could’ve built dozens of them by now. If AAs really wanted to put ourselves in a position to determine who among us becomes prominent, we could’ve done so.

      You said, “There was SO MUCH more discipline. I remember how it was COMMON for black parents to tell their children that they’d better not EVER go out there and run off at the mouth in public. So if you ever had a microphone in your hand or got into the limelight in any way, we KNEW we had to be VERY careful about what we said since it would come back to bite all of us in the butt or help all of us.”

      Many old-school AAs (and the NOI) understood that the mainstream media microphone or platform was almost always a trick and a trap. Far too many AA parents in our age group failed to pass that message (and so many other old-school common sense messages) along to the current generation of young adult AAs. That failure (along with the overall implosion of the AA collective) is what makes those wretched “reality TV” shows featuring deranged AAs possible. Underclass Whites, Latinos and other non-AAs are more likely to still have the sense to run away from the cameras and microphones. Because they know that showcasing their deficits is not a good look for their group.

  20. Khadija,

    I just want to chime in and also express how your blog was an “awakening” for me. I came across your post about black men taking the work and support of black women and giving resources to Becky, Mei Ling and Lupe. That really hit home for me because at that time I was involved in a business venture with a BM and your blog post was the wake up call that I needed.

    I also commented, mostly because I felt “late to the party” as so many discussions were either old, or I was very late in coming into the comment section. So I was a silent absorber and not a contributor at all.

    I did see your post about premium content for contributors but at that point I didn’t feel that I could earn the contribution to get access to the content so I gave up that idea.

    Having said that, your blog has been an instrumental force in helping me re-shape my views of what I was questioning at that time– is this something every generation of BW goes through when they reach a certain age, or is it something special about the time we are living in– and open my eyes to what the black community will try to stop BW from seeing.

    I still read old posts for inspiration or CLARITY from time to time. Your posts about fitness, hair/beauty and creating businesses FOR black consumers also hit home. I’ve had that experience of black owned-black targeted and I swear, other black people do not want to hear you when you try to tell them what it’s REALLY like vs the fantasy ideal they THINK it’s like.

    I also want to voice my appreciation for all of you ladies, including OLS. I’ve read ALL your websites and I love the community you create.

    A long time friend of mine runs a community focused on a specific business vertical and moderates with a heavy hand. When she was questioned, in the past, she would respond that she considered her blog like her living room and if you couldn’t come into her house and disrespect her space, you couldn’t do it on her blog.

    I have a point here.

    I say that to point out that even a comment section of a blog is reflective of the blog owner. If you allow foolishness in your comments/living room, you can’t deny your culpability in it. What I appreciate about the communities you women develop is that the conversations are so focused and uplifting, no trash, no trolls, no ignorance, no “covering the same ground because we keep letting the same people voice the same objections” and that’s refreshing to read and so hard to find in the BWE space. Simply because others would rather allow foolishness to keep those page views, and ad revenue, up.

  21. Lyn, you said:

    “Maybe if enough of us become the ‘exception’, and people see us living well might be enough to spark a cultural shift. Until then, I’ve noticed massive pushback by both BP and WP as my own behavior has gotten more refined. I live in the South, so this might be more pronounced down here in other places of the country. My boyfriend and I receive plenty of dirty looks from everyone here; including people who don’t even bat an eye when they see a Black guy with a White girl! I have literally seen WM, WW, and BM totally bypass BM and non-Black women couples, but stare us down for ridiculous amounts of time in the same setting. The South still has a long way to go in accepting BW and non-Black men together.”

    Yes, this is because the wm-bw is almost always a POWER couple, comparatively speaking. People know that a comparatively substantial amount of critical resources (knowledge/know-how, skills, intellect, money, education, influence, social currency, etc.) are contained in the wm-bw coupling. At whatever socioeconomic level, the wm-bw couple’s resources are highly likely going to be substantially more than the bm-ww couple’s and in all kinds of ways. There has usually been much more vetting done in the case of bw and wm before they commit to each other, and of course, the research consistently shows that the income of the wm-bw couple is higher than the bm-ww’s, That’s just a given, but when I mention resources, I’m usually focusing equally or more on those “non-financial” resources because non-financial resources can have a staggering impact on a couple’s standard of living and their family’s upward mobility. Can’t say that this is always the case, but that has definitely been the case in my marriage. Those other resources are usually hidden from view, like the “prize” that used to be in the CrackerJack box. LOL!

    But Lyn, THESE are the kinds of things that need to be discussed in a PRIVATE forum because there are many women of all types who “comb” through AAbw’s discussions for this kind of info because AAbw are the ONLY ones who will share these jewels publicly. So, I won’t say anymore about “prizes” here. 🙂

    • Evia,

      Yep, I hear you about BW/WM couples. I guess I wanted to point out that EVERYONE is comfortable with BW acting in stereotypical vulgar behavior patterns. You will receive pushback from all sorts of people when you don’t conform to their expectations. Some people will even try to provoke you into acting the stereotype. Unfortunately, it can be a double-edged sword, because if you do respond in anger, you’re giving those people exactly what they want. And if you don’t you have to find a way to internally let go of the justified anger that you feel to minimize your stress levels.

      I find that acting a lady at almost all times works to my benefit. Because of a loud-mouth BW at my job, everyone knows that I date WM. For quite some time most of the BP would act ‘stank’ about it, trying to give me a hard time. I found that consistently refusing to respond in kind has actually won some of them over time. And the WM at my job have noticed their unprofessional behavior and they go out of their way to look out and mentor me! I have received so many benefits by being pleasant to EVERYONE at work, even the people that I don’t like. This has also spilled over to my personal life too. I have received ‘hookups’ WP usually reserve for themselves. The men here are extremely courteous to me too. Keepin’ it real will never work to a BW’s benefit.

      • Fantastic, Lyn–I’m CLAPPING for you. You’ve broken the code!!!

        You said:

        Some people will even try to provoke you into acting the stereotype. Unfortunately, it can be a double-edged sword, because if you do respond in anger, you’re giving those people exactly what they want. And if you don’t you have to find a way to internally let go of the justified anger that you feel to minimize your stress levels.

        Depending on how we are positioned and other factors, some of us IR-relating bw encounter this more or less than others. But this is a topic that has been discussed among the Micomsa women quite a bit and when you have an IDG (Identity Group) with whom you can share and laugh at these antics of feeble-brained others, you can learn other tactics for handling these folks and how to allow this stuff to roll off your back. Support lightens up our lives and loads in all kinds of ways. I tell ya, we’ve had some great laughs about these antics of others, and that’s the best stress reliever.

        When I encounter them–which is rare–I personally regard them as “specimens” and I study them. I never take their stuff ON me because that stuff is THEIRS.

        • Thanks, Evia I really appreciate it. I hope large numbers of BW/BG’s in their teens and twenties are listening in and learning the stuff I had to learn in my 30’s. It will save you lots of unnecessary hardships. This is where I think the bulk of BW in the ‘midlife’ stage can probably help BWE the most. If we can’t devote the time to set up our own blogs we should be regular commentators.

          I think the comments should center around concrete examples of applying BWE principles and the benefits/improvements resulting from this. The bulk of AA BGs have NO guidance and are essentially being raised like weeds. BP think all you need to do is feed and clothe BGs and their job is done. It’s heinous how BGs are ignored in the Black Construct.

          Those of us that are actively applying BWE in our lives everday can actually spell out the results to these girls. They need to be able to visualize how their lives will improve. In the future, I think I will be making the effort to comment on EXACTLY how I apply the principles and how my life has changed as a result.

          BTW, I’m not trying to brag but I’m approaching 40 FAST and most people can’t believe it! They think I’m around 25. Even BP! Now you know it’s hard to fool your own ’cause we know how well the typical BW ages. My bf is 9 years older than me and people look at him like he’s a cradle robber! It’s funny sometimes. I’m saying this because I honestly believe my lifestyle is extremely easier and less stressful (in comparison to my distant family members) and this is the reason that I’m blessed to age gracefully. Stress, hardships, poverty, Babby-daddy violence, coping addictions like overeating, all will age you QUICK! You younger BW have the opportunity to avoid all that by adopting BWE principles now.

  22. @Khadija–

    You’d mentioned above how many of your readers used to irk you because they used to come to your site and not contribute. Well, you and I both consider(ed) that a form of cheating (lol) or being a user–by loading others of us down with all the work of keeping those critically important discussions going and keeping them informative and interesting. But I’ve had to think about that because that’s also occurred with SOME of the MICOMSA women.

    Some of them absolutely refused to share their views–initially–for months. Some rarely ever share(d) their views.Some still don’t. That bothered me too–for months. However, I came to the conclusion that many younger AAbw have grown up in a very different, fear-filled social environment. They’ve so often had their opinions and themselves ridiculed, viciously attacked, and their very selves devalued so much or at least NOT ever appreciated so much until they would just rather not stick their heads out there to be shot off. Apparently, there’s been absolutely NO layer of protection around them, no one to step up and say, “Leave her alone.” I’m thankful to have had that even though I’ve been outspoken all of my life and plenty of folks have swung at me. LOL So, it takes some of the Micomsans to feel safe enough, to realize that ALL opinions that are expressed tactfully will be respected and valued, that no ferals are around them or won’t show themselves, that no Blackistani tactics will be tolerated EVER. I’ve found that when they feel secure enough, most of them will express themselves even when I’ve disagreed with them on one topic or another. It’s normal to disagree sometimes. Anyway, this is what’s happened in MICOMSA.

    You said:

    “Many old-school AAs (and the NOI) understood that the mainstream media microphone or platform was almost always a trick and a trap.”

    Exactly! And any black person who stepped up to the mic HAD to be groomed to avoid those tricks and traps and still get the generally group-scripted message out there in a few minutes. A lot of thought went into those messages. That’s why I’d asked who groomed the college girl. As a result of her letting it rip, the bulk of gay wm have concluded that AAbw are their adversaries. However, they won’t think that about non-AAbw even though some of those women may be much more homophobic than some of us. So, when influential gay wm need to select a bw for a B’way show or a model shoot or TV slot, they are more likely to rather deal with a bw from a group who has NOT shown outright hostility towards them. It’s just easier to deal with those who are not outright hostile. So, I realize that some typical AAbw will say, “I’m just gon say it how I feel it,” but what do they get in exchange for ‘keepin it real’ whereas the Lupitas have been taught to keep their views to themselves and they rake in all the gold.

    It’s mostly about HOMETRAINING. Without hometraining, most people, including many of the rich and powerful, end up losing much more in the social realm than they win. This is why life gets too hard for some of them and they just take their own lives or do other destructive things. Good home-training infuses the notion of “balance” in all aspects of life. Good home-training is the most valuable thing a parent can ever give a child. Old school AAs knew that and much more.

    • Evia,

      You said, “Some of them absolutely refused to share their views–initially–for months. Some rarely ever share(d) their views.Some still don’t. That bothered me too–for months. However, I came to the conclusion that many younger AAbw have grown up in a very different, fear-filled social environment. They’ve so often had their opinions and themselves ridiculed, viciously attacked, and their very selves devalued so much or at least NOT ever appreciated so much until they would just rather not stick their heads out there to be shot off. Apparently, there’s been absolutely NO layer of protection around them, no one to step up and say, “Leave her alone.”

      I’m willing to believe that this fear thing applies to some of these silent women. I’m willing to believe what some other commenters said about not feeling that they had anything to contribute to the conversations. Nevertheless, I still believe that there’s some bad-faith, shady behavior mixed up in this lurking situation for a segment of the lurkers.

      I’m reminded of an incident years ago when I briefly ran a small closed blog. You might remember this incident. Everybody who had access to the small private blog had been specifically invited (by me). And they were all women that I thought were reputable based on what I had seen of their other online interactions.

      Well, I noticed that around 2 of these women were lurking without ever letting the other private blog members know of their presence. I didn’t feel comfortable with “outing” these couple of lurkers by simply typing up a comment to let everybody see the screen name of all who had been present during the previous week (whether the screen names had said anything or had only lurked). It didn’t feel like it would be ethical to do that—because it could’ve tarnished these lurkers’ reputations with the other micro-blog members when I had no way to be sure what exactly was driving that shady-looking behavior. I never expected that these previously-trusted women would do something like that.

      After thinking it over, I published a comment announcing that any [lurking] blog member who didn’t post an introduction comment to let the other members know they had access to the private forum by a certain deadline would be permanently banned from that forum (and anything else I ever did online). At which point, the “secret agent women” opened up their mouths. After silently reading the other members’ conversations for about a week (if I remember correctly). That whole thing of “Imma lay up in the cut and see if I can hear some other folks’ private thoughts while I refuse to share any of my own” is some undercover agent-type behavior* that left a very nasty taste in my mouth. I was disgusted by that little episode, and ultimately shut down that micro-blog.

      Let me give a warning to women who do lurking behaviors in private groups: Whatever your issue or problem may be (that’s causing the lurking behaviors), when you do that lurking behavior in a private group or forum you undermine the trust and fellowship within that group. Whether or not that’s your intention. God bless Evia, because she’s more patient (and less paranoid*) than I am with that sort of thing. Because I know that if I were running a private group and I saw that type of behavior, I would get anybody engaging in that silent lurking behavior OUT of my private group. With a quickness.

      Furthermore, in the context of a political organization, other members (who are savvy and familiar with the history of COINTELPRO) will start to wonder if lurkers are some kind of undercover FBI agent or cop.

      [*Historically during COINTELPRO and in the current era in terms of FBI infiltration of American Muslim mosques and organizations, that silent lurking member behavior profile has been one type of undercover FBI agent behavior. Government agents also tend go to the other extreme of acting like hyper-enthusiastic members who advocate extreme positions. In other words, being agents provocateurs who try to entrap people into illegal schemes thought up by and advocated by the undercover agent.

      As a Muslim in America, I can’t afford to have even the slightest whiff of shady-acting people around me. I can’t participate in any private setting that contains people engaging in those lurker behaviors. Sometimes, a certain level of in-group transparency helps to keep everybody in the group safe.

      For clarity: NO, I don’t think any of the past (or present) lurkers are agents. I don’t think the BWE movement has attracted THAT type of attention, praise God. For all the reasons above, I’m just saying that I, Khadija, don’t want to be around anybody who’s acting like a lurker in a private group context.]

  23. Lyn, you said:

    “I hope large numbers of BW/BG’s in their teens and twenties are listening in and learning the stuff I had to learn in my 30′s. It will save you lots of unnecessary hardships. This is where I think the bulk of BW in the ‘midlife’ stage can probably help BWE the most. If we can’t devote the time to set up our own blogs we should be regular commentators.”

    YAY!!! Lyn, this is so FAB! But why can’t some of y’all set up a PRIVATE forum and take turns with it or do it for a FEE, as APA is interested in doing.

    Unlike many AA women, women in other groups do not have the resistance toward applying gems of wisdom and using winning strategies and tactics. Women in other groups will scoop it up and hit the ground running with it. AAbw resist using gems because they KNOW that doing so will separate them from the various bottom feeders they love.

    I personally know that there are some women in other groups who comb through my site.Some of them didn’t grow up getting much of this either. For ex., I read on her site where an Asian woman was discussing some of my content, quoting me, and urging others to come to my site. LOL Over the years, I’ve heard from ww thanking me for sharing and asking me to help them in some way.

    • Well I’m one in my teens, going off to college/university next year. Yours and Ms. Khadija’s blog have helped me a lot, just wanted to say thanks.
      Somethings are harder to talk about because my parents are Nigerian and don’t see or experience to the things I do. My mom does see what’s happening in the US and the whole light skin obsession thing. Even shocked to hear my brother saying these things now, we concluded he got it from the rap music he listens to and tries so hard to imitate negative aspects of the music. I’m from Canada btw. I never discriminated on race, it wasn’t until recently I was scared because how my brother talks about if I date a wm but refused to date a full black woman. My mom said something that really got to me, and it’s about how he’s trying to imitate the part of AA “modern culture” that AA don’t even like and are running away from. I just pray for him, and my mom is also teaching me a lot along with you about reciprocity.
      Any advice for a woman my age in the modern times because I remember being so confident in my heritage loving my skin and thick hair, but now it’s like I feel this hate a lot and I don’t even go on gossip blogs.

      • Simi,
        As for starting college, there is a lot of adjustment during the first semester/year of school so don’t fret. You will succeed! I’m excited for you and I hope (you better) take advantage of the large amount of eligible men you will be interacting with. No excuses about having to study. college is the EASIEST time for most people in their life to make friends and find love 🙂
        If you like reading material, these are great dating and relationship-building books with advice you may or may not get from home (OLS i hope its okay if i leave these here):
        http://www.amazon.com/How-meet-Rich-Business-Friendship/dp/0595367232/ref=la_B001K8QTIS_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1407128161&sr=1-1
        http://www.amazon.com/Seduction-Mystique-Definitive-Meeting-Marrying/dp/0380783657/ref=la_B001K8QTIS_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1407128161&sr=1-6
        http://www.amazon.com/How-Irresistible-White-Men-Interracial-ebook/dp/B00H2VESLW/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1407128338&sr=1-1&keywords=asian+black+dating (don’t focus on the rich aspect as much as attracting and findings guys of HIGH Value)
        Evia and Khadija have also written about how important marriage and dating men of high value/quality is for bw and how important ones private and professional network are so their books will also be a great resource.
        http://www.amazon.com/Eve-Sharon-Moore/e/B005O97ZP0/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1407128758&sr=1-1
        http://www.amazon.com/Khadija-Nassif/e/B00J7R3PDQ/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1407128779&sr=1-1
        Your parents I’m sure will advise you on the academics portion lol, but if I were you I would plan a study abroad at some time during your time in uni.

        KEEP digesting what is being said in these spaces and continue to be respectful (as you were in your comment) when topics about AA’s occur. There is a black Canadian women blogger around here (i’m sure she’s lurking) who is making it her mission to discredit the work of the the BWE pioneers. ignore these people.
        I too come from a Nigerian family (i was born in the states) and I am seeing how some Nigerian men raised in the US are being influenced by the garbage many black entertainers are putting out year after year. very sad, but I know most Nigerian women will kick them to the curb before they allow these men to drag them to the bottom.
        I can be very blunt when it comes to my siblings respecting my space, so I’ve made it VERY clear to my youngest brother that he is NOT to bring that mess around me. He is a STEM & music student (a good boy on paper) who recently seems to have taken a particular liking for what i call “coon music” and other disgusting content with blacks embarrassing themselves for a few dollars. I’ve made it crystal clear that if either of them find themselves without any common sense and do something to jeopardize their future, I’d let stay suffer the consequences.
        Now I know other bw would say that is cold or selfish, but I do not play around with that kind of foolishness. My own mother used to “joke” around that if any of us were caught drinking and driving and got arrested, not bother calling home because neither her or my father would come get us.* Nigerian accent* “you will rot in jail oh!! we did not come to this country for you to disgrace us.” I never knew if they were kidding or not, but I didn’t want to find out so I tried my best to stay out of trouble.
        in my opinion there’s not much you can do to change your brother’s behavior. You aren’t his mother or father, so let your parents do the parenting. Just make it clear to him AND your parents that you are NOT here to clean up his messes and you WILL go about your business if he decides to act up and embarrass the family. Every family has relatives that NO ONE interacts with because of too many screw ups. My younger brother got the message loud and clear and my middle brother (a working professional) KNOWS not to even go there lol.

        Good Luck!!!

  24. Khadija, you said:

    “For all the reasons above, I’m just saying that I, Khadija, don’t want to be around anybody who’s acting like a lurker in a private group context.]”

    LOL! Khadija, I hear you, but this is why I decided at the outset of MICOMSA, that I was going to have a high level of transparency in the group because initially, I wanted to operate MICOMSA as a community. We have NOTHING to hide since we’re a social connection and support network just like thousands of other organizations and clubs that operate in the U.S and world. If any “shady” person or “saboteur” would “infiltrate” Micomsa, they would probably become quite bored. LOL!

    Also, I may not be explaining this clearly enough. ALL of the members DO talk to me freely and with each other, as time has gone on. I’ve had LONG discussions with virtually ALL of them more a than few times. But in large group chat discussions, that’s where they would clam up or they’re hesitant to write commentary, for maybe the same reason that Lyn mentioned. I don’t believe they were being “shady.” I’ve been touched by their generosity in various ways and this is the case with ALL of them. None of them have shown me anything but the best that I could expect from any human being. I believe that when they didn’t do what was expected, it was because they simply didn’t know how. I’m not just saying that to be kind. This is too important for me to do that.

    SOME bw who are very good people simply have emotional baggage from past interactions with other BLACK people. They’ve been dissed, disappointed, and treated even worse so much by other BLACK people. So, I think that some of them wanted to be sure that it’s not “business as usual.”

    And lastly, these women don’t hesitate to donate money to keep MICOMSA operating and they want so badly for me to expand it. Some of them have offered to donate substantial amounts of money and have made other sacrifices on behalf of MICOMSA. They KNOW that networks like Micomsa are crucially needed because they’ve benefited a lot from it in various ways. They pointed out that they don’t get a chance to meet quality other bw the way they’ve been able to do in Micomsa. Therefore, left up to some of them, the membership would be huge by now and a few of them have been willing to go above and beyond to make that happen. SOME of them want us to have national conferences and a few retreats each year and invite lots of others. Whew! LOL! They are really a great bunch of women. I’m the one who’s foot-dragging because I don’t want to get in over my head because I have other projects I work on along with responsibilities to my family.

  25. So there is a beauty site for Black women that is sort of like Sephora. One of the two owners is a Black woman(maybe AA). There is a ten dollars off your first purchase coupon. This is certainly a good thing for sisters living in isolated areas where products for us aren’t sold.

    http://www.doobop.com

    The White partial owner makes a comment that could be problematic.

    http://mobile.nytimes.com/2014/03/20/fashion/makeup-foundation-for-the-many-shades-of-women.html?_r=0&referrer=

    • @ Chicnoir

      Ahh yes the doobop thing is interesting. I have no problem with black people working with whoever is going to take them there. Nor do I think we should limit ourselves to catering to just black women. We can be pro- bw and support bw and work with, share space with and so on with others when it serves our purpose.

      When reading blog, story, and ads it is clear it is for deeper ethnic shades and textured hair (No Afros Darling, No Afros.). They are careful not to say for black women, but feature them cause that is how they are getting thier start and will branch out later. Yeah, the man said some foot in mouth stuff and the woman seems to back him up. I don’t know if, it’s a lack of tact or respect.

      However, how many people are aware of what he said and how many black women will close their purse? Knowing this and not liking his words I’ll never buy from them. I’ll find someone else when I want to shop for such things.However, if, I didn’t see this and I just visited his site I would have been none the wiser unless someone like you had pointed it out or I stumbled across it later. Thanks.

  26. chicnoir,

    Do you mean this section of the article?:

    “When we started the company, my biggest fear was to start an ethnic site,” Mr. Bernet said. “It would seem like it was 1990, where you have black women on the face of the product. It’s so boring for everyone: for the brands and the customers.”

    Ms. Patterson said: “Beauty needs to be out of the ethnic aisle, gone. We are post-ethnic but we are totally pro-edit. There are some specific concerns that I have that might be different than you. I want a brand that speaks to that or that specific need without saying I’m going to package it differently and put it over there.”

    If so, then the black woman, who is part owner, and BW, who plan to financially support this site, need to very careful since one of her goals is to provide products gear towards WOC. I feel like this will be a repeat of Carol’s Daughter and Curly Nikki. The founders will use BW’s insecurities to make a profit and build their business, and then they will use said profits to expand their business and become more “inclusive,” which basically means featuring everybody, but BW, who are clearly of African descent in their advertisements. However, the bulk of their profits will still come from these BW, who still need a site that sells ethnic makeup not readily available at most malls, beauty supply stores, beauty boutiques, etc. Once again, BW will be propping up a business that only wants their hard earned cash, but doesn’t give a rat behind about them or their interests.

    I wonder if the BW business owner properly vetted her business partner properly. If my potential business partner was making obviously racist and hostile comments about BW like the above, then I would have to pass on a partnership with him because he doesn’t respect me or my culture and would probably end up pushing me out of my business. Individuals only genuinely help and promote people who they respect. If she went into this business relationship with eyes wide open, then she either is naive or just wants to get paid. Either way, I believe that she will not be the main driving force behind the business in the long run. My guess is that she will sell her business to a non-black company for a payday especially considering the WM, who she has chosen to partner with.

    Let’s be real many of us use at least some products and services offered by non-black companies and individuals. However, these non-black companies are not trying to pull the wool over our eyes by playing on our insecurities by telling us that they are creating a company that is just for us and about celebrating our often ignored beauty, so we will become emotionally invested and give them all our hard earned cash. After they have gotten our money and made us dependent on their products or services, they pull a switcharoo and roll out the real, ethnically ambiguous business that they wanted to run the whole time, but couldn’t because they needed to gain profits by cornering a niche market in order to enter a larger market with higher barrier to entry.

    While I want to support the website because:
    (1) one of the half-owner’s is black and wants to provide services for people who are black
    (2) black women are currently being featured prominently on the site
    I am wary because of some of the dynamics that I have observed with other supposedly black-owned beauty companies/blogs (e.g. Curly Nikki, Carol’s Daughter). I just don’t want to prop up a business that only seeks to use me. I think a good compromise will be to only purchase the products created by black-owned companies (e.g. Lamik).

    Another issue is that there are a lot of white-owned companies being featured on the website. A company geared toward WOC should feature and promote businesses At least, for the hair care section, there are at least six, highly successful black-owned hair care companies that could be offered on the website:
    (1) Karen’s Body Beautiful–sold at Target and various brick-and-mortar and online beauty shops
    (2) Oyin–sold at Target and various brick-and-mortar and online beauty shops
    (3) Miss Jessie’s–sold at Target, Walmart, and other various online beauty shops
    (4) Carol’s Daughter–sold at Sephora, department stores, and various online retailers
    (5) Qhemet Biologics–sold at a few online stores, but still extremely popular esp. w/ naturals
    (6) Curls–sold at Target, Walmart, and various other online retailers
    A lot of the companies featured on the website may have products that WOC can use, but they don’t primarily use BW in their advertisements or target BW in their marketing. Some of the black-owned companies may be problematic (e.g. Carol’s Daughter, Miss Jessie’s, Curls, etc.) for reasons touched on in other discussions, but I just wanted to make the point that more products from high-end, black-owned companies could be featured on the website.

    Also, for the record, I have no problem supporting black-owned businesses. One of the things that I liked about the natural hair movement was that a good number of BW started hair care companies (e.g. KBB, Oyin, Qhemet Biologics, etc.) geared towards the specific hair care needs of BW. Before these companies were founded, the only high-quality hair care brands available for BW specifically were Mizani and Keracare. Now, BW have several options, if they want to use a high-quality, high-end hair care line. Many of these companies are now being sold in Target and Walmart due to the support that BW gave these companies. I make a point of only purchasing my hair care products from black-owned companies. In addition, my doctors, hair stylists, etc. are black. I’m not at the point in my life where I need a lawyer, accountant, financial advisor, etc., but when I do need that kind of professional help I will seek out black, trustworthy people.

    • Sorry guys, I noticed a ton of typos and grammatical errors after posting.

      I just got a little excited responding to your post. I’m a beauty fanatic, so the issue of BW and the options available when it comes to beauty and hair care products is extremely interesting to me.

    • @APA

      Yup the first quote you posted is what I called problematic. As Khadeja and another commenter mentioned, it’s so difficult for many of us to support our bussiness ventures so it may be a smarter move on the side of the bussiness owners to try to appeal to a wider audience.

  27. [quote]If so, then the black woman, who is part owner, and BW, who plan to financially support this site, need to very careful since one of her goals is to provide products gear towards WOC. I feel like this will be a repeat of Carol’s Daughter and Curly Nikki. The founders will use BW’s insecurities to make a profit and build their business, and then they will use said profits to expand their business and become more “inclusive,” which basically means featuring everybody, but BW, who are clearly of African descent in their advertisements. However, the bulk of their profits will still come from these BW, who still need a site that sells ethnic makeup not readily available at most malls, beauty supply stores, beauty boutiques, etc. Once again, BW will be propping up a business that only wants their hard earned cash, but doesn’t give a rat behind about them or their interests.[/quote]

    I’m probably going to write a few things that people won’t like.

    First let me start with saying that I’m only slightly familiar with Curly Nikki and will not comment on that.

    Having been on the business side of the beauty business, once you get distribution in places such as Sephora and Macy’s, you are in a different business model and the requirements for staying there are such that you MUST grow and you MUST advertise like hell.

    I understand that people feel like CD pulled a switcheroo, but we have to be careful about limiting black owned businesses to serving black women primarily, or focusing on BW primarily, if we want those companies to stay in business and prosper.

    Having been in that business, I have come to believe that– for the most part– the general black female collective is more concerned about being catered to than they are about economics. Over the years I have witnessed group of women publicly tear down these companies and their products (CD, Miss Jessies. ESPECIALLY etc) yet get upset when they become more “inclusive” in their targeting.

    Having been in that business, I have witnessed BW who believe that the way to voice an opinion, or issue, is to “put everything on blast” who will viciously “go after” a company when they experience something negative and who will put a whole lot of energy into negative activity that they would NOT EVER do to a white or publicly owned company, or better yet, the prejudiced Korean beauty supply stores. Not to mention the CONSTANT complaining about what things cost as if the companies should sell their products for no profit, or try to compete with ninety-nine cent Suave conditioner.

    I can say that something feels wrong about how CD changed their tune with their marketing, but I completely understand. I’d rather that business grow and prosper– and stay on HSN and in Sephora and Macy’s– which WILL and HAS opened doors for other black beauty products to come after them– than to have stayed black focused and never opened those doors and knocked down barriers.

    I wrote this because it burns me to see people write this because it’s like “stay small”. It comes across as more EGO than ECONOMICS. Because to be perfectly honest, this is what you SHOULD want. You SHOULD want a black business to be able to branch out and get more and more mainstream, just like you SHOULD want a black woman to “come up” in the world and branch out to a more “inclusive” community if that will provide more opportunities for her.

    Otherwise what you are wanting for that black owned business is just like wanting to keep a BW trapped in the black community.

    For black businesses to grow, survive and prosper in this time, the best strategy is to be able to get into the consciousness and wallets of consumers globally. It’s not even just to focus on AAblacks or AABW or BW because international commerce is easily accessible by the small business now. It is not to say that you should take advantage of BWAABW, but just that you have to have a broader focus to grow and compete today.

    —————- ONE LAST THING, THIS IS RE: DOOBOP

    APA made a list of brands they SHOULD carry. This is what I CAN tell you: once a brand has distribution with ANY major retailer (Target, Sephora, etc), they have restrictions on selling to other retailers. Each brand is different and each retailer is different but generally speaking, they usually are not able to open new accounts with certain kinds of retailers unless those retailers have serious financial backing or a heavyweight brand name behind them. I’d put money on it that they can’t get Carol’s Daughter because of Sephora. That’s not to say they never will, but I’d bet they can’t do it right now for a lot of the brands you listed.

    Generally speaking (in beauty and fashion and many other industries), retailers have exclusivity. For example, if a product is sold in a Nordstrom or Sephora retail store, there is usually a radius (of miles or zip codes) around that store where the brand cannot sell to any other retailer located in that area. Online becomes a different beast because sometimes that company can’t open any new online accounts (again unless it’s a heavyweight). Some retailers will practice “diversion” which is where they buy with approval for one channel and start selling into another (i.e. approved to sell in their salon/store but start selling online) but if they are caught, their accounts are terminated, thus diversion makes it seem like it’s easy to just get a brand and sell it online, when in reality it’s not.

    I just bring this up because I feel that the criticism is just hurtful to the concept of the prosperity of black owned businesses. Especially when people want to fault them for not doing something when they don’t know how the industry works. It’s like ‘passenger seat driving’ or ‘armchair quarterbacking’ but in a business sense.

  28. Gina,

    The brands listed aside from CD (e.g. KBB, Oyin, Miss Jessie’s) are carried at a multitude of smaller and larger retail outlets (e.g. Walmart and Target) both online and offline. One of the reasons is because these companies were carried by large box retailers AFTER they gained a large following and generating MILLONS in revenue in the BLACK community, so I believe if DooBop truly wanted KBB, Oyin, and Miss Jessie’s, they could have worked out a deal. I don’t know the ins and outs of their contracts, and neither do you, but I think that we can all agree that there are many more black-owned/WOC-owned beauty brands that could be featured on a site especially since it is geared towards WOC. In addition, a lot white-owned brands offered on the site are carried at Sephora, Ulta, and department stores, but the owners of DooBop were able to work out a deal with these exclusive brands (e.g. Claudie, AHAVA, etc.).

    As far as black-owned companies needing to change their advertising when they make it to the big leagues, I don’t know if I agree with that 100%. They made it to the big leagues by marketing to and selling to mainly black customers, so they can easily stay in the big leagues by continuing to focus on black customers. I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that Walmart, Target, Sephora, Ulta, etc. would not carry these brands in their stores if they didn’t think these companies ALREADY had the base (i.e. BW) to sell their products. In fact, I’m going to say that Walmart, Target, Ulta, Sephora, etc. added these black-owned lines because they wanted to capture the millions of dollars being spent by BLACK women on these products! They have enough white people shopping at their stores already, and white women (except maybe those with VERY curly hair) are not interested in buying black hair care products because it typically isn’t a practical choice for their hair type. What these big box stores are trying to do is capture another segment of the market by bringing in products that will appeal to other groups (i.e. WOC). Black-owned beauty companies can include non-blacks in their advertisements, but I don’t want like it when black-owned beauty companies start whitewashing their companies when they were propelled to the top and being kept at the top primarily by the hard earned dollars of BW.

    Let’s be honest. While NOT focusing on black consumers may the way to go in other industries, targeting black consumers is the way to go if you want to make a pretty penny in the hair care and beauty industry. BW spend the MOST money on hair care(~1/2 trillion dollars)! Why anyone would want to re-direct marketing dollars from black women to WW, Hispanic women, Asian women, etc., who can get by with just shampoo and conditioner is beyond me. What some of these natural hair care companies should do if they really wanted to expand their business is start actively creating and marketing products that people with relaxers can use. Because truth be told, a lot of these BW-owned hair companies have really tapped into the larger AA-market. They only cornered a small profitable niche–natural hair. They would make money beyond their wildest dreams. All without having to target non-black women.

  29. — BW spend the MOST money on hair care(~1/2 trillion dollars)!–

    That’s not a very accurate fact. In fact the quote is as follows:

    —-What’s missing from these figures are general market brands, weaves, extensions, wigs, independent beauty supply stores, distributors, e-commerce, styling tools and appliances. If all of those things were to be taken into consideration, the $684 million in expenditures could reach a whopping half trillion dollars.—

    The key here is COULD.

    There is also a difference between spending the MOST and spending the most PER CAPITA. But nonetheless, the half a trillion is speculation, it’s not measured spending. What IS measured is $684 million. BIG difference between half a billion and half a trillion.

    http://un-ruly.com/the-changing-business-of-black-hair/

    Secondly, most of the measured spending is spent on what are often called drug store brands, and at ethnic beauty supplies. Most of that money is NOT spent in the premium hair care market.

    I kind of don’t want to debate the rest of it with you (too much hyperbole for me), so I’ll leave with this:

    It is a disservice to strategic discussions about business and economic prosperity when people who won’t let go of a consumer perspective try to discuss how a business should be run. There’s almost always a lack of understanding of the various factors that influence business decisions, not to mention treating the people who run the business as if they re idiots who don’t make calculated and thought out decisions.

    I would love to see YOU TRY to follow what you feel Doobop.com SHOULD do because if you DID, you would expend a lot of time and energy finding out what they already know.

    —so they can easily stay in the big leagues by continuing to focus on black customers.—

    Okay. Show me. List premium hair care/beauty brands that have department store or high end retail distribution (not drug store distribution primarily), that focuses primarily or exclusively on black customers. If they can EASILY do this, and still grow their businesses, show me who has.

  30. Gina & APA,

    You both (especially Gina) know waaay more than I do about the beauty & hair care industry. I’m excited about the opportunity to ask some questions of both of you that usually don’t come up in these sorts of conversations, so please bear with me if what I’m asking is rooted in insufficient knowledge or confusion about how these things work in real life.

    Could it be that the core of this issue is more about a structural business problem with Black-owned hair & beauty products? That perhaps it’s more about the inherent problems of not having vertically-integrated businesses (than anything else)?

    I’m sure you both know this, but for those who don’t, the point of vertical integration in business is for a business to own and control all (or as many as possible) of the processes needed to make their product available. From Wikipedia:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vertical_integration

    “Vertical integration is the degree to which a firm owns its upstream suppliers and its downstream buyers. Contrary to horizontal integration, which is a consolidation of many firms that handle the same part of the production process, vertical integration is typified by one firm engaged in different parts of production (e.g., growing raw materials, manufacturing, transporting, marketing, and/or retailing).”

    I agree with large chunks of what both of you are saying. On the one hand, I don’t appreciate ANY business entity treating me and other BW consumers as if we had “cooties.” It’s the same reaction I have to 99.999% of Crossover Negro Politicians. It’s easy to use and discard Black consumers (who are extremely emotionally wrapped up into certain types of consumer choices—much of AABW’s spending is extremely insecurity-rooted and woundedness-rooted). It takes rare skill to reach out to nonblack consumers/voters WITHOUT treating AA/Black consumers/voters as if they had cooties. Former Chicago Mayor Harold Washington is one of the few Black politicians that have been able to do this.

    On the other hand, I think y’all know how I feel about any Black-owned business depending solely on Black consumers. That’s the quickest road to bankruptcy and ruin as far as I’m concerned. I believe that any Black-owned business that wants to survive and thrive MUST seek nonblack consumers. There should be a way to do that without treating Black consumers as if they have cooties.

    As I read both of your comments, I’m thinking the core problem is more about Black businesses almost never being vertically integrated. Please correct me if I’m mistaken. We almost never control the other make-or-break portions of our business, such as having production facilities or distribution chains. All of which makes Black-owned businesses extremely vulnerable to the whims (and ongoing hostility) of nonblack distributors.

    It all reminds me of something that came up in the comments to this post.
    http://sojournerspassport.com/compared-to-stephanie-st-clair-are-you-a-total-jellyfish-chicken-or-a-wimp/

    A reader had mentioned drug dealer Frank Lucas as an example of an evil but successfully-run business. I said the following in response:

    [quote]”Leaving aside the demonic aspects of the drug trade (I hate drug dealers), Frank Lucas was still dependent even after cutting the Italian mobsters out of his supply chain. This is because he still had to go to non-Black outsiders for a critical piece of his enterprise—he had to go to Asians to get the drugs that he sold. It was never his “product,” it was the Asian growers’ product. If they chose not to sell to him at all, or changed the terms under which they would sell to him, then he would be SOL. The only way for him to truly have been in control was if he (or somebody associated with him) had been growing the drugs that he sold.

    Contrast this with the numbers situation: The “product”—the money that AAs spent on gambling—came from Blacks. The bets and the money played were collected by Blacks. It was housed by Blacks. After somebody’s number hit, the winnings were delivered by Blacks back to the Black player(s) who won. Note that this was a CLOSED loop with Blacks folks handling each and every step of the loop.

    This was an example of what Dr. Claud Anderson (author of Black Labor, White Wealth and Powernomics) calls a vertically integrated business—one where a group controls each step in the process from top to bottom. Black businesses are always extra-vulnerable because we never have closed “loops.” There’s always some outside person controlling at least one critical aspect of our service/product “loop.” This control gives these outsiders the ability to seriously undermine and destroy various Black businesses if they want to. There are many examples of this:

    (1) The Koreans essentially controlling the distribution of Black hair and beauty supplies. Once more Koreans get into actually styling BW’s hair, I won’t be surprised if their brethren stop selling hair care supplies to AA hair stylists and salons altogether. Then what will AA stylists do?

    (2) There was an incident in the late 80s-early 90s where Min. Farrakhan was planning to produce some personal products like lotion, etc. Supposedly, the Johnsons of Johnson Publishing and Fashion Fair make-up had agreed to produce the containers for these products. Well, the Johnsons are dependent upon White-owned chain stores to distribute their cosmetics. The White chain store owner(s) told the Johnsons that if they did this with Min. Farrakhan, then they would stop carrying Fashion Fair make-up in their stores. The Johnsons backed out of their deal with Min. Farrakhan.

    A legal example of a vertically integrated business are the seafood restaurants that Dr. Anderson has been involved with. As he said in various interviews, Blacks controlled the process “from the boat to the [customer’s] throat.”[end-quote]

    This is the same problem with Black movie makers. They still have to depend on the good graces of White distribution networks—White-owned theater chains.
    __________________________

    Gina,

    Just so others can see how many moving parts are involved in this (all of which are invisible to me and other consumers):

    If you have the time, as someone who has been on the business side of the beauty business, could you please mention some of the different things a Black-owned beauty business would need to control in order to be totally vertically integrated? I think that would be quite enlightening.

    I would figure a factory to make the product, product bottles and other containers and ownership of a chain or retail shops to sell the product. What else is involved in the end result of having the product available to consumers?

    I also wasn’t aware of the exclusivity angle. What are some of the other details that are invisible to me as a consumer?

  31. Thank you so much for asking and opening the discussion for this. I will address as many of your points as I can: (excuse my punctuation, when I type fast, I overlook capitalization)

    —-could you please mention some of the different things a Black-owned beauty business would need to control in order to be totally vertically integrated?—

    IMO,I don’t believe that a BOB (black owned business), in the beauty space, needs to own production facilities. I think in the economy in which we live, the business model that works best is to be able to market a product to the end consumer. Not necessarily make it.

    I have not ever had issues having a product manufactured. In the case of a beauty product, most of those are manufactured stateside and I have not faced any discrimination. When you have your “ducks in a row” it becomes clear to contract manufacturers that you are a legitimate business person as opposed to a tire-kicker.

    I will also mention that to get the necessary equipment– and more importantly– safety testing equipment and staff– it becomes cost prohibitive to be solely a manufacturer of your own brand unless that brand is large. Locally, we have a large company that has been around since the 70s (they were the original body shop, the body shop you all know came over from Europe and pushed them out of the trademark- it was a big deal). Even that company that produces their own product lines still does a lot of contract manufacturing for other manufacturers and retailers (private label brands for companies such as whole foods).

    I think this is reflected in the “hurdle” a lot of “kitchen/home grown” black targeted beauty lines face, where they start off as hand crafted then move to a contract manufacturer.

    But I don’t believe that’s an issue.

    Now when you talk about the Korean BSS, yes if you want those brands, you will face battles that IMO are not worth it. They have it on lock. Many Korean BSS aren’t even profitable, it’s more about having a local monopoly than it is ensuring inventory turn is profitable. It’s through the monopoly that the entire business becomes profitable.

    However, when it comes to global trade, let me tell you, most Asian factories (Chinese, Indonesian, Indian) don’t like the Korean monopoly either. And yes, in SO MANY cases they would rather sell to a non-Korean person, even a black person, than a Korean because what they do to us, they do to them. Predatory pricing, pressure for cheap products, slipping quality standards (i.e. mixing in horse hair with human hair in the weave products– #facts).

    —-ownership of a chain or retail shops to sell the product. What else is involved in the end result of having the product available to consumers?—-

    Now we’re getting to the issue. Where the REAL issue comes in is in the retail distribution. The internet has opened that up widely. Carol’s Daughter would not be CD if not for the internet. Miss Jessies, none of these brands would. However, for a beauty brand to become a solid brand it needs retail distribution.

    Mom and pop stores and salons are nice, but few move product. You’re talking orders of 6 – 12 pcs, and even mixed units. So instead of a full case (most case packs are 12pcs) you’re talking 3 of this, 3 of that, etc.. That pales in comparison to Target or Sephora where you’re shipping pallets (or even full truckloads).

    I don’t think people understand this part of distribution. They see a product in maybe 36 mom and pop stores and salons but they don’t understand they don’t move a lot of units. I have business colleagues who sell to mom and pop retailers as well as large chains like Target (I am manufacturer direct to consumer, I don’t focus on selling to other retailers) and it’s 80/20. Majors are 80% of their revenue. Not to mention, it takes a lot less (staff, effort, customer service, etc) to sell to a handful of major retailers than it does to sell to tons of small stores.

    I have colleagues in many different aspects of the industry, from $20-35 price points all the way up to $150 average price points (selling in top tier stores like Neiman Marcus) and the patterns are the same- the few large stores move way more product than their hundreds of smaller retailers.

    There was one company that purchased from that was in business for 20-30 years, selling to over 1,000 independent retailers and some department stores. They closed that up to license to Target and collect a royalty check. It was simply, more profitable, than servicing all those accounts. Granted they wouldn’t have been in a position to license, had it not been for that history and track record, but I’m just giving you an idea.

    ——————– MY FOCUS HERE IS ON HIGHER END RETAILERS

    What are some of the other details that are invisible to me as a consumer?

    Sephora has “soft requirements” of advertising, press, beauty awards, etc., I used to work with the former PR (manager, director, I don’t remember) for Tweezerman, so if Tweezerman had these requirements, better believe they filter down.

    Let’s take one step back. There is one consistency with broad scale retail (this includes food and beverage like starbucks). Retail is about real estate. When you start talking chain stores and major retailers, you’re talking about companies that leverage real estate to sell things. They have large real estate divisions and SOMEtimes, their real estate is more profitable than their retail.

    This is important.

    Because when you have space in a major retail store, you are essentially benefitting from their accessibility to high value retail and that’s how they see it.

    For example, cosmetic counters in department stores (like macys nordstrom etc) are leased. If you work at the Benefit counter at Macy’s, you work for Benefit, Benefit is leasing space from Macy’s. You are employed by Benefit, not Macy’s. When you are a vendor in Sephora, you are also responsible for your brand. You leverage their space, but you are responsible to ensure that your brand moves (the same can be said for major online retailers like Zappos). So for YOU to continue to have that space over another brand, you must have your marketing plans, advertising plans, in store promos, gifts with purchase… all of it needs to be lined up to ensure that consumers keep coming in to pay. You get weekly– if not daily– sales reports. Too many comparative declines in sales and you’re in trouble.

    It’s not a kick the feet up I’ve made it situation.

    So when you see a company like CD get into Sephora then have to start advertising outside of the AA community, I get it.

    —What are some of the other details that are invisible to me as a consumer?—-

    So I’ve mentioned exclusivity. This is not an all-inclusive list but some are:
    Co op advertising dollars (i.e. share the cost for store ad campaigns to have your products featured)
    Your own ad campaigns and minimum budgets required
    Sampling events and other in-store promo events– for which you pay the cost (IN FULL)
    Celebrity endorsements or celebrity product placement (that you must get on your own)
    Magazine editorial coverage (that you must get on your own- for example in beauty Allure magazine is the gold standard)
    Training. If you don’t have staff in the store, sometimes you have to pay to train their staff on your product line
    Free samples (when you buy on Sephora.com you can select a certain amount of free samples)
    Gifts with purchase (this is the thing in cosmetics and fragrance– it’s practically mandatory)
    Holiday promotions and gift with purchase

    And it goes on.

    ——Could it be that the core of this issue is more about a structural business problem with Black-owned hair & beauty products? That perhaps it’s more about the inherent problems of not having vertically-integrated businesses (than anything else)?—-

    It could very well be. I’m not yet at the point where I would say that a company needs to invest in manufacturing facilities– because that’s the most capital intensive low profit margin side of the spectrum. Factories work on insanely slim margins and rely on volume.

    But… I remember when Forever 21 was a raggedy retail chain with tight crowded stores in second rate malls. Back when I was… 21, LOL. Forever 21 is Korean owned and owned by a family. This company is both revered AND hated. Hated because of design theft/piracy, revered because they are KILLING it and are now retailing in prime locations with a “household name” brand.

    They are vertically integrated, though not exclusively and not across all product lines. But they key here, and this is where I think you are going with this, is they can’t be blocked by say— Macy’s— and not have access to the retail consumer.

    http://www.forbes.com/2009/04/29/billionaire-retail-forever21-korea-rich-09-wealth.html

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Forever_21

    Now to bring this back to the beauty business, yes I am sure there is way for a black owned business to be able to do what Forever 21 has done, I just don’t think it can (or should) be done by catering primarily or exclusively to the black consumer. For one, catering to the black consumer WILL dictate your real estate. What sense would it make to cater to blacks but have your store in some of the highest sales per square foot retail spaces in the USA (or the world) when the demographic data CLEARLY shows that the black population in those areas is low?

    Here’s a quick way to ballpark some of the prime retail real estate in the country– where are the Apple stores (I kid you not, without having retail real estate metrics at your disposal, the Apple store is a damn reliable indicator). You will also notice patterns of other retailers in those areas. Typically you’ll see Sephora and Aveda, when it comes to beauty (Ulta will often go into go into what is considered “Class B” retail).

    Now if you want to talk about being where there are lots of blacks, you’re talking a lot of urban shopping centers– which are on the decline. Or class “C” retail, strip malls (anchored by a drug store or grocery store), etc. which doesn’t fit into the business model I outlined above (I’m not saying it doesn’t work, just that it’s a different model).

    http://nreionline.com/retail/look-out-below

    If anything I’ve written is unclear, let me know and I’ll clarify.

    • Gina,

      Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for taking the time to break it down to us in such detail! Your explanation of the REALITIES involved in selling hair and beauty products was a business course all by itself. 🙂

      I chuckled at some of the details you mentioned:

      (1) Guurl, don’t get me started on the “tire kicker” mentality*. I could endlessly foam at the mouth about that in the context of how most AA consumers treat visibly Black-owned businesses.

      [*“A tire kicker (tyre kicker in the UK) is someone who comes around looking at the car for sale, examines the engine, kicks the tyres, but has no intention of actually buying the car – and is wasting the seller’s time. The term is applied to other contexts as well, with the same general meaning.”]

      (2) That, with their monopoly business practices, the Korean BSS have managed to even p*ss off other Asian factory owners. Wow—LOL!!!!

      From what you’re describing, the core difficulty with running a successful and thriving Black-owned hair and beauty company revolves around retail distribution. I would guess that most AA consumers have what can be called “Black business fantasies” about the long-term viability of Mom and pop stores and salons. What seemed most significant was the explanation you gave about this when you said:

      [quote]“Mom and pop stores and salons are nice, but few move product. You’re talking orders of 6 – 12 pcs, and even mixed units. So instead of a full case (most case packs are 12pcs) you’re talking 3 of this, 3 of that, etc.. That pales in comparison to Target or Sephora where you’re shipping pallets (or even full truckloads).

      I don’t think people understand this part of distribution. They see a product in maybe 36 mom and pop stores and salons but they don’t understand they don’t move a lot of units. I have business colleagues who sell to mom and pop retailers as well as large chains like Target (I am manufacturer direct to consumer, I don’t focus on selling to other retailers) and it’s 80/20. Majors are 80% of their revenue. Not to mention, it takes a lot less (staff, effort, customer service, etc) to sell to a handful of major retailers than it does to sell to tons of small stores.”[end-quote]

      From the Invisible-To-Consumers details you’ve graciously taken the time to explain to the rest of us, it’s pretty clear that for a Black-owned hair or beauty company to make it in the long run, it HAS TO make that jump from spending a lot of time and resources dealing with mom and pop retailers who move very little product to also dealing with major retail chains who move a lot of product. And making that jump will inevitably cause changes in how that company markets its products (in order to attract nonblack consumers).

      Again, THANK YOU Gina for taking the time to explain this. That retail space tip regarding Apple stores was especially invaluable. I hope any aspiring Black business owners in the reading audience are paying CLOSE attention to the info you’ve graciously shared here!

    • Gina thanks so much for your comments. You have really schooled me. I figured when Black natural hair companies started working with Major retalirs like Target etc.. there would be contract limitations. Your comments further opened up the industry.

  32. —-(2) There was an incident in the late 80s-early 90s where Min. Farrakhan was planning to produce some personal products like lotion, etc. Supposedly, the Johnsons of Johnson Publishing and Fashion Fair make-up had agreed to produce the containers for these products. Well, the Johnsons are dependent upon White-owned chain stores to distribute their cosmetics. The White chain store owner(s) told the Johnsons that if they did this with Min. Farrakhan, then they would stop carrying Fashion Fair make-up in their stores. The Johnsons backed out of their deal with Min. Farrakhan.—-

    I wanted to respond to this separately.

    If this were to happen now, it would be a different story. Now, you can easily google and finds hundreds of overseas factories producing plastic containers, and maybe a few dozen domestic ones.

    You can find dozens of contract manufacturers to product the product, and even a few that are black owned, because this is a faceless business now.

    I think, more than anything, what affected those over 50 is that they didn’t have the benefit of the internet age where the barriers to trade are rapidly disintegrating. I’ve bought wholesale components from what we would see as “raggedy” shops in Hong Kong: (just click on a few of these pins, because Google Maps street view wasn’t available there when I first went)

    https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF8&t=h&oe=UTF8&msa=0&msid=112930762430072237049.000476c01285e18a9f11a&dg=feature

    So in that age, he HAD to go to Johnson’s, because how would he have even found a company like http://mckernan.com/ or an overseas manufacturer unless somebody really hooked him up.

    Unless it was precisely because he wanted to have another black owned business manufacture the containers, well then, yeah…

    • Gina,

      Again, THANK YOU for graciously sharing these nitty-gritty details!

      Yep, the internet age has made it possible for Black business owners to jump over many business barriers that had blocked earlier generations of Black business owners. With the Farrakhan incident, I had the impression that he specifically wanted to have another Black business owner manufacture the containers. Although, historically the NOI has not been opposed to working with nonblack others if necessary to accomplish their business goals.

      This applies to so many different contexts. Which is why I’m not feeling the so-called plight of those AABW actresses who are too lazy to take advantage of the opportunities that literally didn’t exist for earlier generations of Black actresses.

      And with that, I’m off to do some more reading up about the Forever 21 owners. I had no idea they’ve “had it going on” like THAT. {chuckling}

  33. I clicked the link that you provided, and correct me if my understanding of the article is not incorrect. A research firm (Mintel) calculated expenditures for black hair care and got the figure $684 million. The same research firm also said that if they had included things such as general market brands, weaves, extensions, wigs, independent beauty supply stores, distributors, e-commerce, styling tools, and appliances then the figure could approach ~1/2 trillion dollars. Basically, they said that black hair care expenditures are probably 700x larger than what we calculated because we chose not to factor in numerous types of expenditures when doing our calculations. Am I right? Or am I wrong?

    I think we can all agree that there is a tremendous opportunity to make money in the black hair care industry, and white-owned companies have been taking advantage of this opportunity by marketing to black people using black face. For years, black women have complained about the lack of black-owned companies. What they wanted was an actual black person selling them their products. Now, we have a few black-owned companies that are growing and slowly beginning to corner the black hair care market, but what some people are arguing for is that these companies should become more “inclusive,” which typically means to start limiting the number of BW in advertisements as well as products/services provided for BW while still expecting the same (or even greater) financial support from BW.

    I honestly think that we are discussing two completely different issues. You are thinking about money, and I am thinking about how this fits into the issue of the erasure of BW from the institutions and organizations that they support. To me, the owners of DooBop.com comments just sounded like more of the status quo, where black people are expected to spend their money on brands, products, services, entertainment, etc. that intentionally excludes them from their marketing campaigns because we taint, diminish, or limit their brand/image. The idea is that white is universal, but black is limiting. Black is even boring, if you believe what the white owner had to say. Am I also to assume that the countless white faces in every magazine photo shoot, ad campaign, and TV commercial are boring as well? Why should I support a company who has owners that openly spout these views? What do you think will be the trajectory of said company?

    With all this talk about the need for “inclusiveness” in business, I have to ask why should we as BW be concerned/not support the following things:
    (1) Democratic and/or black politicians who do not specifically reach out to BW, who voted overwhelming for them in elections, even though their platform consists of policies that are beneficial to everyone as well as other special interest groups (e.g. LBGT, undocumented workers, etc.)
    (2) Black artists who do not have offensive lyrics, but rarely feature BW in their music videos or promotional material even though they may feature other WOC (i.e. Latinas, Asians, etc.)
    (3) Black bloggers, who sell their blogs, which are centered on black issues, to white-owned companies and who start including non-blacks, who can supposedly relate to said issues, in formerly “black” movements in order to expand their audience
    (4) Magazines, TV shows, films, etc. that don’t feature BW as well as other WOC even though they know that many WOC purchase, read, or purchase their content
    All of the above entities made power plays by excluding BW/black people and appealing and catering to the dominant group (i.e. white people), and all of these are topics that have been debated in one form or the other on BWE sites. Should I be understanding of their willingness to be “inclusive” or more “universal” by courting non-blacks/whites? Should I celebrate the fact that some of these people have become more mainstreamed? Why do we disapprove of the above groups, but are okay with black-owned hair care companies dissociating themselves from us even though these companies still want our money? How do the above decisions/situations differ from a black-owned hair care company who decides to become more “inclusive” by whitewashing their marketing campaigns even though BW initially put them on so to speak?

    I’m not asking the above questions to be smart. These are questions that came to mind when I read your assertion that black-owned hair companies can’t survive if they become “mainstream” and more “inclusive.” Are we to assume that black bloggers, artists, politicians, entertainers, etc. can’t survive too without being “inclusive”? On the one hand, we have conversations about the erasure of BW and why BW are not at the forefront of the organizations, communities, and industries that they help prop up. On the other hand, we have conversations about how black-owned businesses should take after white businesses and use white face to market their products even if said products are primarily being purchased by BW/black people, so they can reach a larger audience and make more money. Does anyone think that these issues may be related? If we view using our own images to promote our own products, entertainment, services, etc. as a liability, then how can we expect larger society to use and promote normal, healthy images of BW/black people?

    • APA,

      I’ll respectfully and cheerfully agree to disagree. 🙂

      You said, “I honestly think that we are discussing two completely different issues. You are thinking about money, and I am thinking about how this fits into the issue of the erasure of BW from the institutions and organizations that they support. To me, the owners of DooBop.com comments just sounded like more of the status quo, where black people are expected to spend their money on brands, products, services, entertainment, etc. that intentionally excludes them from their marketing campaigns because we taint, diminish, or limit their brand/image. The idea is that white is universal, but black is limiting. Black is even boring, if you believe what the white owner had to say.”

      Speaking only for myself (as always—LOL!), I don’t believe these are two different and separate issues. In my view the AA collective’s mass misuse (and disorganized use) of money is what drives and creates all these negative dynamics you mentioned. AAs don’t seriously support Black-owned/controlled anything in any reliable manner. So, instead of having organizations and institutions, we have one-shot, hit-or-miss endeavors. A real institution functions whether or not specific individuals are still participating in it or running it. Real institutions outlive their founders and creators.

      Everything you mentioned,

      . . . from the Black and Democratic politicians who ignore and run away from the Black voters who blindly support them . . .

      . . to the Black artists who refuse to feature BW in their videos . . .

      . . to the Black bloggers who sell their blogs to White entities . . .

      is the end result of AA Blacks not having any solid institutions of our own.

      Other people can erase and whitewash BW because other people control our image.

      Other people can control our image because, for the most part, we don’t have any thriving media (or other institutions) of our own that can control and promote our own image. In terms of Black-owned business or industry, we don’t anything remotely corresponding with the amount of money that flows through AA consumers’ hands.

      We don’t have solid institutions of our own to do the things we claim to want as AA consumers (such as positively promoting BW’s image) because since the end of segregation, AA consumers have conducted and undeclared boycott of most visibly Black-owned businesses.

      Lifetime TV can sharecrop out the portrayal of Aaliyah to whichever WW’s daughter they want because, aside from Oprah, AAs don’t own viable cable TV stations. [I have questions about the long-term fiscal health of Oprah’s channel, but for the purpose of this comment, I’ll assume things are just fine and dandy with her station.] The current WW’s daughter cast to play Aaliyah is a Nickelodeon starlet. Similar to how the WW’s daughter who was previously cast as Aaliyah is a Disney Channel starlet. These girls were lifted up and sent through the career-creating pipeline by White media institutions. AAs don’t have a Nickelodeon or Disney Channel to create Black teenage starlets who can then be promoted to starring in adult roles as they mature. We don’t have it because we don’t support the existence of such.

      The same dynamic applies to the Black and/or Democratic politician/candidate. It costs money—lots of money—to run an effective modern campaign that has any realistic hope of winning an election. Any candidate is going to be beholden to whoever is contributing the money that makes their election campaign possible. And they’re going to be most responsive to whoever or whichever entity is controlling the organized large blocs of money that comes into their campaign.

      They have no rational reason to be responsive to disorganized, individual Black voters who are contributing $5 here and $10 there to their campaign (nickels and dimes relative to the money those same individual voters spend weekly on Mickey D’s, etc.). Especially when they know those AA voters will vote for them as the so-called “lesser evil” no matter how much they ignore them. It takes organized money—in the form of paid lobbyists and/or an established political “machine” (which still involves money; these political machines control access to “good government jobs”)—to make politicians accountable.

      The typical AA buy items like Starbucks coffee, Dunkin’ Donuts, Mickey D’s bacon, egg and cheese biscuit, etc. on their morning commute to their job like clockwork. A person could set their watch to how many times per week the typical AA consumer will spend X amount of $ to consume various useless or even harmful products. By contrast, AA consumers are extremely “some-timey” with spending our money on the things that really matter in the long run. Instead of the established routines AAs create as consumers to consume products from White entities, most of us wait until the spirit happens to move us (or a special occasion like Kwanzaa) to buy something from a Black vendor.

      Because as a group we’re disorganized and only respond to periodical emotionally overwrought crusades. Meanwhile, we continue or daily or weekly routine of purchasing from various White entities like clockwork before, during, after, and in-between the periodic Vote Black!/Buy Black! crusades.

      The same applies to the BW blogger situations like the Curly Nikki mess. When her book came out, I recall being quite annoyed to see legions of colored girl commenters proudly announce on various BW’s blogs that they were not going to buy Curly Nikki’s book. Purportedly because they just weren’t that into hair. Even though I’ve been told that more than a few of the commenters who proudly announced their refusal to buy her book are into hair to the extent that they’re members of Black hair forums.

      Given how everything has played out, I’m no longer offended by these women’s knee-jerk refusal to support Curly Nikki’s book. Which is not to say that they knew the real deal about Curly Nikki when they made the proudly announced choice not to buy her book. Judging from their comments at the time, the bulk of them didn’t. They seemed to be simply doing the AA consumer crab-in-a-barrel standing operating practice at that time.

      On the other hand, I suspect that part of why Curly Nikki did what she did is because she knows how AABW consumers do. She probably knew who she was dealing with. AA consumers give a lot of lip service about Black-owned business, but there’s never any serious or sustained follow-through. Not enough to build a thriving business or industry. And so, other people remain in control of our image.

    • — Basically, they said that black hair care expenditures are probably 700x larger than what we calculated because we chose not to factor in numerous types of expenditures when doing our calculations. Am I right? Or am I wrong?—

      Here’s the problem: when I looked into that earlier, I couldn’t find any RELIABLE source for that quote. Considering that, I prefer to stick with the data they actually DO have.

      Besides that, half a trillion just SOUNDS wrong. It SOUNDS propagandized. I’m not one to disregard solid data, which is why I googled it when I read what you wrote. I just could not find anything to reliably back that up.

      So let’s talk facts:

      Women-owned businesses represent nearly 50% of privately held companies in the U.S., however, three quarters of these businesses are not able to grow their businesses past $50,000 in annual gross revenue.

      http://www.forbes.com/sites/thestreet/2012/05/17/why-women-owned-businesses-dont-grow/

      This is verifiable data. I’ve been involved in women owned business organizations for a while now and this is considered common knowledge within those circles.

      Let’s go over that one more time: 75% of women owned businesses revenues do not surpass $50,000 GROSS.

      This is across ALL races/ethnicities.

      How much worse do you wanna bet BW owned businesses fare?

      I believe what you advocate is dooming BW owned businesses to STAY SMALL.

      I don’t believe that these businesses have or SHOULD tackle the issue of erasure because I honestly believe more is to be gained by becoming large businesses with POWER, INFLUENCE AND MONEY than by catering to the BC’s social issues.

      Also having a Black exclusive focus GROSSLY limits a business’ access to investors. It would be idealistic to think that the wealthy blacks are eager to invest in BOBs but I have witnessed BOBs pitch for funds to be overlooked in favor of the first pale face with the same concept. (It should be noted that CD went more “mainstream” shortly after taking investor funds. While many of the investors were black, they still are investors.)

      We already know how blacks fare when it comes to lending, no reason to think business lending is any different.

      I believe that what you are proposing is a prescription for either failure or staying small. It’s not what I advocate and never will.

      I believe that BW should take advantage of the opportunity to be faceless and get as much global revenue as they can.

      I believe that BW should leverage technology and the reductions in the barriers to global trade as much as they possibly can.

      I believe that these businesses SHOULD as much as possible reach a mainstream audience. Most BW start with the BC because they feel it’s “low hanging fruit” and that they intimately know the needs of the black consumer, however the problem is it can pigeonhole a business.

      I believe that if necessary, BW should hire a white face to gain access and/or leverage where it is useful. There are actually websites where business owners can “rent” white people (mostly men) to handle their trade negotiations in foreign countries.

      I personally don’t hold these businesses to the standard of having to represent “me” or black women in general. I don’t think YOU should change your views at all, you don’t have to celebrate anything. These views just aren’t views that I share.

      I market to white people using white face all the time. All day, every day and twice on Sunday.

      —-To me, the owners of DooBop.com comments just sounded like more of the status quo, where black people are expected to spend their money on brands, products, services, entertainment, etc. that intentionally excludes them from their marketing campaigns because we taint, diminish, or limit their brand/image. —-

      So, I don’t think they “expect” black people to do anything. However, I will raise 2 points:

      1- You don’t have to market directly to the black market to reach the affluent black consumer. The affluent black consumer is very aspirational and “in their mind’ has more affinity with affluent whites than with working class blacks.
      2- The most vocal consumers, are NOT usually the most affluent. I get a little amused when people get riled up and start these discussions, complaints and protests (i.e. the equivalent of being loud), they usually do not represent the majority of the business’ revenues. If they did, the company would change their tune immediately. When you study consumer behavior you will notice that affluent consumers have a different way of voicing their displeasure.
      —————-

      I’ll leave you with a couple more things:

      1. I believe a business is a business, not a social agency.

      2. It is my firm believe, after years of observation, that the vocal black female complainer consumer truly believes that she/they represent more of the business’ [in question] revenues (or the market in general) than they actually do.

      But most importantly, the BW often neglect the reality that other demographics are growing at a faster rate (especially Latinos) and will soon displace us as their population base grows, and that we live in a GLOBAL economy.

      And I believe approaching things from that “complainer” perspective leads to what amounts to powerless protest.

      The biggest recent faux pas I recall was the debacle over Pharrell’s G.I.R.L. cover. Even after the originator of that issue ended up with her foot in her mouth, THEN the goalpost got moved because the black girl on the cover wasn’t dark/black enough.

      This kind of stuff is becoming the “representative face” of the black female consumer and I’m distancing myself form it as much as I can because honestly, I think it’s the opposite of strategic and long term effective.

      • Gina,
        you said: “But most importantly, the BW often neglect the reality that other demographics are growing at a faster rate (especially Latinos) and will soon displace us as their population base grows, and that we live in a GLOBAL economy.”

        I agree with this so much. I believe that is what the women who started “Mixed Chicks” realized. The truth is that many Hispanic women have hair liked “mixed chicks” and many BW who aren’t mixed (like myself) have hair like “mixed chicks” as well.

        I am middle aged and I remember the days when BW could not find make up in stores like Bloomingdales and Macys AT ALL. At that time advertisers didn’t even think BW wore make up, market research didn’t even consider BW or Black people at all. I remember what a big deal it was when Fashion Fair cosmetics came into Macys and Bloomingdales and these companies were so successful that Revlon followed suit with Polished Ambers. Now nearly every make up line has a wider selection of shades (not perfect yet, but better than in the 1970’s).

        The sad truth is that if you want your business to grow, you have to think global, if you want to think global then you can’t JUST focus on BW. However, inclusion means just that, inclusion, meaning your primary focus on BW and the secondary focus on other WOC. IMIO, Carol’s Daughter has taken their focus off BW and put it on other WOC, which is think is a foolish business decision, because expansion doesn’t mean you turn your back on your base.

        • —I agree with this so much. I believe that is what the women who started “Mixed Chicks” realized.—

          I believe the women behind MC saw how the earlier, internet gathered, vocal, natural haired collective treated other businesses who catered to them:

          – complained about prices
          – bickered over ingredients
          – mixed in raw ingredients with the prepared product to “stretch” it so that it didn’t cost so much
          – put every little negative thing on “full blast” on the message boards
          – threatened when they didn’t get their way (I’m going to tell EVERYBODY not to buy from you)
          – waged internet protest whenever prices increased

          And decided to just not go there.

          Businesses run as businesses (and not social causes) also have to look at how much money the group is spending and deal with it accordingly. For example, overdraft fees in bank accounts exist to “punish” you for not keeping a high balance. Without a high balance in your bank account, you are not valuable to the bank. A bank needs high balances in deposits to increase their lending ratio (I used to work in banking). If you don’t have that, they can ONLY make you valuable through transaction fees (which is why on all fee structures they are waived if you keep a consistent balance).

          As consumers, we have to know our worth to move with power. THINKING you are VALUABLE because your ego tells you so is foolish.

          ———————————-

          I wanna tell y’all something crazy. I hope if you remember nothing, you remember this.

          I do a LOT of Facebook advertising. Right now, Facebook ads is where it’s at because people voluntarily give Facebook so much data. Not just what you do on Facebook, but what you do on the internet while logged into Facebook.

          Anyhow, there have always been large companies that are “data aggregators”. So back in the direct mail days they bought data from many different companies and combine it into profiles. This is how companies would get profiles of their customers. They didn’t have to survey, they could buy the data.

          We’re talking tons of data from everything to what type of cards you have, what kind of car you drive, do you eat out a lot, etc. Now I don’t mean specific data on a specific person (because they can’t sell your name with a profile).

          Nonetheless, the internet has changed this. It’s a long explanation, but follow the story. So now profiles are linked to user IDs across the internet. Have you ever browsed the web on your computer and been shown an ad for that site, later, on your phone? That’s part of it.

          Nonetheless, Facebook has vast amounts of data and for any large audience, you can go into a Facebook advertising tool called Audience Insights and view all the info they have on that audience. It’s a combination of Facebook data and data from these data aggregators (Acxiom, Personicx if you want to look them up).

          What this data will also show you is how that audience compares to the general facebook audience. So it has a simple graph of that audience you’re analyzing, in the background grayed is the facebook audience and it gives you a +% or -%.

          So I’m in there, right, analyzing audiences. Just out of curiosity, I decide to drop in a few brands that are targeted at black women (you can look at the audience insights of a facebook page or brand if it has a large enough audience).

          WOAH.

          Then I drop in another one.

          WOAH.

          Then I drop in another one.

          Pattern.

          So here’s the generalization:

          1- Skews young (25-34)
          2- Disproportionately single (this relates to other things which is why I mentioned it)
          3- Disproportionately lower household income and housing value
          4- Depending on the brand, can be more educated (more advanced degrees) than the general facebook audience (which can be a bad thing bc most take on student loan debt)
          5- Disproportionately employed in lower paying jobs and industries (remember people often put where they work and what they do into their facebook profiles)
          6- Disproportionately single parents (but we already knew that)
          7- Disproportionately living in “black” urban areas (detroit, newark, jackson)
          8- Way way way disproportionately active on facebook (like 2-4x as active as the average facebook user)
          9- Disproportionately underutilized with desktop computers– this is also an important one. It indicates a lot of people who only access the internet via phones.

          but here’s the part that KILLED me. KILLED me.

          In every “black” brand I looked up… Facebook has a metric called spending methods that covers card types (bank card, gas card, premium card etc). Every black brands audience was off the charts high with primarily cash and extremely low with primarily credit cards.

          What does that tell you about the BW consumer and what these brands face?

          ————————-

  34. (i apologize for any typos)
    What a resource the comment section of this blog continues to be!!! Thank you blog mother!
    I hope I am not derailing the conversation by leaving this comment (let me know blog mother). I had to leave a comment to say THANK YOU to APA, Gina, and Khadija for this discussion on black-owned businesses and how it relates to alliances. It’s right on time for me. Gina….you should charge for this kind of content bc I and everyone entrepreneur reading this is taking notes (no seriously, do you consult or do market research on the side? lol There are folks like myself who would gladly pay up!)

    I have read every single post Khadija has done on small businesses and they have been a true life saver (saving my precious time, my precious resources, and my precious sanity!! lol). TY Khadija!!I have grappled with, toyed with, and agonized over getting into the black hair and beauty market in some kind of capacity for several years. At the end of last year I bit the bullet and decided enough was enough and got to work. It had been a side project up until recently, and now I am determined to launch my services late this fall *knocks on wood*

    I’m so glad Forever 21 and its Korean-owners were brought up in this discussion. THIS is a model that ANY bw entrepreneur can replicate. so often we hear complaints about white-owned business using black faces to get black dollars. What exactly is stopping bw from doing the SAME thing?? I had no idea up until a few months ago that Forever 21 was not white-owned.

    I just went to Forever 21’s website…..i didn’t see any Korean girls….heck no Asian girls either…just thin ww and much larger ww for their new plus size options. I think I’ve seen biracial bw on there but i’ve NEVER seen any Korean women on that site…someone correct me if I’m wrong.

    It doesn’t seem to bother this Korean family or their daughters, who have taken positions within the company….its the same attitude I see with other Asian or Jewish-owned businesses (uhh Motown anyone?? NBA anyone??). Their members may not be front and center, but you better believe their groups are retaining MOST of those profits and those $$$ will be invested in THEIR communities, businesses, hospitals, schools, nonprofits, etc.
    Do all bw-owned businesses have to operate this way? No, but it’s a strategy that has made various identity groups a fortune…..

    I believe Khadija said in one of her black business posts that the black OWNER of a bakery shop would pretend to be an employee or would not correct the customers if they assumed he was, because at the end of the day, he was getting their business so why get prideful and make a fuss 🙂

  35. Khadija, you said:

    “Other people can erase and whitewash BW because other people control our image.

    Other people can control our image because, for the most part, we don’t have any thriving media (or other institutions) of our own that can control and promote our own image. In terms of Black-owned business or industry, we don’t anything remotely corresponding with the amount of money that flows through AA consumers’ hands.

    We don’t have solid institutions of our own to do the things we claim to want as AA consumers (such as positively promoting BW’s image) because since the end of segregation, AA consumers have conducted and undeclared boycott of most visibly Black-owned businesses”

    I agree with this not just 100%, but 1000%. This is the elephant in the room that many younger bw TOTALLY and willfully overlook. As I’ve repeatedly pointed out: AA women give ONLY lip service to supporting each other. This is not the case with other groups because in each of these more successful groups, they have large functional organizations and/or institutions, albeit invisible to many of you. They are ORGANIZED. Not saying that every member of these groups belong to one of these organizations or institutions, but they are generally ORGANIZED. Even ww had to organize into NOW (National Organization of Women) in order to change the landscape for ww.

    This is what needs to be focused on and fixed among “enough” AA women. What is it about many younger AA women that causes them to NOT want to come together and organize themselves? Honestly, this is what makes me WARY of many of y’all. LOL! I don’t necessarily care that much whether some of you talk much. What makes me nervous about some of you is that you can’t seem to come together even when your lives depend on it. THAT is the point most AA women are at now because AA women have largely lost their social currency in the U.S. I suspect that the lurking behavior and not being able to come together are connected.

    AA women never had a LOT of social currency, but we used to have a heck of a lot more than we have now because other groups “thought” we were connected/unified.

    So, I have to chuckle at how some of you think you will be able to change anything trying to operate SOLO. This is not the way the world works. Most individuals in other races and ethnic groups and definitely among the whites and other black ethnics I’ve mingled with as an adult are connected/organized into groups, whether it’s through their clubs, churches, networks, civic organizations, neighborhoods, jobs, institutions, informal groups, etc. For ex., near me there are several large golf clubs that may have hundreds of members each, who are 99.9% white.Some of those same members also belong to the same other local organizations and clubs and their family members do too, And that’s just ONE type of club. Just about every area in this country would have this same setup with multiple clubs and both formal and informal organizations. So, when you multiply this out, you’ll see that there are hundreds of thousands of these folks who can be activated to oppose or approve something with just one phone call from anyone in their network. They are a part of a WEB–all connected to promote and protect their interests.

    How many of you belong to a WEB like that? How many of y’all–who feel highly offended by what this wm said–could call a couple of bw in YOUR WEB today and activate them to mount a backlash at him?

    Groups like the Tea Party didn’t just spring up overnight. They were already connected by that WEB. All they need is a phone call from someone else in their WEB.

    There are many individual rich AAs, but even when some of them may think exactly the way many of us here think, they cannot change anything either because they know they lack the support needed to do so. They don’t have a WEB or only a tiny one. Money is not nearly enough because no matter how much money an AA has, the money in other groups dwarfs that AA person’s money and the money in other groups is ORGANIZED money. I believe that Oprah thinks very much like some of us here. After all, as an AA woman, she gets insulted too, probably more often than she even mentions. But she knows she won’t succeed if she were to go up against the giants in other groups because Oprah has virtually no support among AA women, aside from Lip Service.

    When people in stronger groups know that you are a SOLO bird, watch out! They will be shooting at you all of the time and they know you can’t retaliate because you’re flying or trying to fly SOLO.

    I know that some of you younger women THINK you’re saying something very new in this discussion, and I don’t mean to discount the value of some of it to anyone who may find it to be of value, but this kind of talking about these issues has been going on for the last 40 years among AAs, and it’s the SAME talk. But, just maybe, the internet WILL be the piece needed to change things this time. But I recall the black business talk GURU, Tony Brown, of Tony Brown’s Journal, which was a longlasting ’70s PBS TV show in which he basically drew the blueprint for AAs uplift via business and other areas. Tons of AAs hollered “Amen!” And that was the end of that.

    So things have degenerated to the point where this wm can outright say that he knows he can get your money and he’s telling you to your face, he’s going to erase you. And he’s right because he knows you are hooked on those products and you have nowhere else to go to get those products. He and many others like him KNOW that most of you lack the discipline to keep your purses closed, and AAs also lack ???? something else– whatever that thing is that would compel you to come together and produce your own.

    Since I’m an old school woman from a certain place and time, I don’t have your mindset. I will always be able to come together with others who are willing to promote and protect my interests. I don’t fear doing that. I fear NOT doing it. It’s not a matter of bravery as some of y’all seem to think. LOL I’m NOT brave. Instead, I KNOW I don’t have a choice since I live in a world where most others operate as GROUPS. From both common sense and science, they know that “animals that travel in herds are safer.”

    Some of you continue to tell me that there can be no group–anything among AA women anymore and that AA women just have to operate SOLO these days. Well, that may be, but y’all may as well get ready for a heap of public insults hurled at you and all sorts of micro & macroaggressions–mentally, emotionally, socially, and physically because that’s how SOLO birds are treated. This is already happening and WILL increase, so stop already being “perpetually surprised”!

    • Evia,

      I 1,000% co-sign.

      What too many younger, new-school AAs fail to comprehend is that success is a TEAM sport! Every other ethnic group (Whites, foreign Blacks, others) has plenty of multiple, often-overlapping “teams” (or “webs” as you’ve called it) that keep large numbers of them connected to each other.

      AAs have the last gasps of previous generations’ AA “teams” such as AA sororities, etc. But all these AA teams created by our ancestors are on their very last fumes and/or already dead. The post-segregation level of cohesion within and between these remaining AA “teams” has been lackluster, to say the least.

      Like you said, this flying solo fantasy that a lot of younger AAs have leads to destruction. Really, it eventually and inevitably leads to the premature mental, spiritual, emotional and physical DEATH of the individual who’s flying solo. Even cave people understood that Isolation = Death. Unfortunately, a lot of younger AABW will have to learn that lesson the hard way.

      • I can say with this new venture I am entering, it would NOT be possible without the emotional AND financial investments of my extended family AND their business connections. For this business it would not have been smart to focus solely on the AA-market which is why I decided zero in on certain markets outside the US that my research and my contacts in those areas have shown will be very fruitful.

        I know some women my age would shun me for this because they believe there’s enough resources for me online that I should go about it ALONE. Yeah, not gonna happen 🙂
        I remember when a ww friend was complaining about job opportunities (this after I had announced I’d accepted a job offer) and I asked her what about seeking help from her family members who work in high places for top companies in our discipline. She told me she’d feel guilty asking for their help and that she wanted to earn the job on her own merit. I’m not sure if she was saying that to impress me or imply something about my own job search success, but it struck me as very odd. Only a fool would discard that kind of human capital in their arsenal out of pride.

        • I learned last year that AKAs have white members. My question is are there any white sororities that have black women members?

      • Normal, healthy teams have a focus and will not allow outsiders to derail that focus. I feel that many AA, especially AA BW, organizations are on their last leg because they refuse to adhere to the aforementioned, common sense principle. We not only allow outsiders in our groups, but we give them equal status; eventually, the initial focus of our group is either diluted or completed derailed. To illustrate my point, I will give two examples.

        Background: I was the lone black in my high school’s IB program. I gained admission to a Southern Ivy. While I had (and still have) no qualms about being friends with non-blacks, I was truly excited for the chance to mingle and befriend what I assumed to be like-minded blacks at a top-tier university. I joined a black sorority with this assumption in mind; I joined my particular sorority as a legacy.

        Example One: I was in college during the Jena 6 controversy. My sorors decided to skip class, travel across several states and protest on behalf of these black male criminals (T-shirts and all). I stayed my behind home and was vilified for my choice. Even though, IMO, coddling criminals and faux cries of racism eroded AA political clout. Even though such a behavior harmed BW (skipping class, othering). Even though the black fraternities would go to such lengths for a BW criminal

        Example Two: For one weekend a year, my alma mater hosted Culture Weekend. During this weekend, cultural groups highlighted their unique aspects through food, dance, historical plays, symposiums, etc. My sorority chapter not only highlighted various non-AA black cultures, but gave these cultures an equal platform. For every lecture regarding AA concerns, there was one focused on no AAs. Caribbean and West African foods were served equally alongside AA cuisine. Keep in mind that at a top-tier university, the black Greek organization usually has the sole burden of hosting any AA cultural events. Hence, my campus’ lone AA voice diluted further diluted itself by giving an equal platform to non-AA blacks, yet the African and Caribbean student groups did not even make a poster highlighting their AA cousins.

        The lesson to be learned from these examples is that when a group focuses on everyone but themselves, the group becomes dysfunctional and non-effective. As more of us start our own groups, we must determine its focus and not allow outside interests to take precedence.

      • I agree. I remember about two years ago an all white female Greek stomp team won. They were good but, I honesty do not think they were better than the all bw team. There was some controversy about the people who voted for the winners. Yes, I think the judges were biased towards the white team. And, why stomp? It’s not part of your cultural up bringing?

    • I have seen some of the things Evia and Khadija have talked about. Going it alone is not good. As Evia always say, “Vet, vet and vet again.”

    • We simply do not love each other enough. Some of us are confused. Many of us are concerned about silly things that do not have any value.

    • Yep. I remember Tony Brown. I specifically remember him pointing out how much money it cost to put on some black org’s national yearly conference (NAACP maybe?).
      He said if they cancelled it for just one year they could apply the cost to BUYING a hotel. That hotel would of course generate lots of revenue and employ lots of BP.
      But, he said, every year people got together, gave speeches, gave each other awards, did the electric slide and then start making plans for the next conference. smh

  36. Gina,

    I know I shouldn’t have had this reaction, but I’ve been shrieking with laughter at your comment dated July 27, 2014 at 2:34 pm. The comment in which you told the REAL DEAL regarding the AABW consumer in terms of Facebook data. {still chuckling}

    I’ve been looking at similar types of info because I plan to use Facebook ads to promote my next Written For The WW Romance Novel Consumer series of romance novels. [Sorry folks, before anybody asks, I write my romance novels under an Anglo, White-sounding pen name that I never divulge.] In recent months, a lot of indie fiction writers like myself have realized that—at this point in time—using Facebook ads often gives a better bang for one’s advertising bucks than advertising in other places such as BookBub, etc.

    While reading the Facebook stats you mentioned in your comment, the phrase “Ain’t nobody got time for that” kept going through my mind. I’ve made a lot of other (current and aspiring) AABW business owners very angry when I’ve discussed these types of issues you mentioned. Like here:

    http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/2013/07/stacking-deck-for-or-against-yourself.html

    http://sojournerspassport.com/if-you%e2%80%99re-a-black-business-owner-who-wants-to-succeed-leave-the-african-american-consumer-behind/

    What I found most interesting about those stats you cited was the Black consumers’ underuse of desktop computers–an indication of “a lot of people who only access the internet via phones.”

    I also recall a commenter who had been a long-time member of Black hair forums describing the same BW consumer behavior pattern that you mentioned: First the BW consumers pretend to be excited about the Black business endeavor. Then, they start backbiting it. Then, they work their fingers to the bone to pull it down.

    For any Black business owner whose goal is to earn a decent living from their business, who has time for any of THAT?

    • WOW! I’m a member of a lot of Kindle writer groups although I’m not a writer and only have one kindle book (non-fiction) that was mainly an experiment. I joined, to follow, because I find them fascinating. I had a friend (writer) who would struggle with writing ethnic fiction or for the caucasian market and before she finished the sentence I would scream WHITE every time.

      I think a lot of blacks have a comfort zone and also some feeling of guilt about not writing for blacks, so I applaud you for showing people, time and time again, to go with what makes the most BUSINESS sense, not a feeling of social loyalty (that apparently only black women feel beholden to).

      I tell any business owner who listens that Facebook is where it’s at right now. It’s like when you could get clicks on Google Adwords for pennies. And a LOT of small business owners aren’t paying attention.

      I’m going to contact you through your website. When you’re ready to run ads (close to when you’re ready to pull the trigger, because facebook changes a lot within a short time span), hit me up and I’ll give you a brain dump on all that I’ve learned. I’ve managed over 30K in ad spend (which is not much, but still enough to get a lot of data) and I stay in different internet marketing groups where a lot of facebook ad techniques are tested.

      • Gina,

        You said, “I think a lot of blacks have a comfort zone and also some feeling of guilt about not writing for blacks, so I applaud you for showing people, time and time again, to go with what makes the most BUSINESS sense, not a feeling of social loyalty (that apparently only black women feel beholden to).”

        I agree. It seems to be a weird combination of comfort zone (which is really not all that comfortable when you look at the actual behavior of most AA consumers toward visibly Black-owned businesses); guilt about not Sista Soldiering in every context (meaning guilt about choosing NOT to write for Blacks); and fear of the unknown. Somehow many aspiring and current business AABW owners don’t understand the “put on your own oxygen mask first” principle. You don’t have the ability to engage in charity if you’re drowning economically.

        You said, “I tell any business owner who listens that Facebook is where it’s at right now. It’s like when you could get clicks on Google Adwords for pennies. And a LOT of small business owners aren’t paying attention.”

        Far too many AABW in general are not listening to anything when it comes to pursuing opportunities. I’ve repeatedly tried to pull more than a few Already-Writing-As-A-Hobby AABW’s coats about the opportunities presented by indie publishing. Most of them won’t hear it. They come up with a litany of self-created “reasons” why it “can’t” work. My favorite nonsensical excuse was the assertion that: “A lot of Blacks have lost their jobs, and they can’t afford to buy ebooks.”

        My response (which was met with the sound of silence): “First, why are you fixating on writing for Blacks? Second, why are you fixating on writing for jobless and broke people? What sense does that make? Businesses make money by serving people with money to spend. Again, why are you fixating on broke people?” I never got an answer to any of that. The woman just shrugged, and went back to complaining about her job.

        I didn’t even bother to mention the dynamic that people will spend money on amusements such as [various forms of] entertainment, eating out, and drinking whether they can “officially” afford it or not.

        This is part of why I laughed at the info you gave about the AA Black consumer mostly surfing the internet on smart phones (as opposed to having or using desktop computers): Many people—particularly the younger demographic who are almost surgically attached to their smart phones—will eat Ramen noodles all day everyday before they give up their smart phones and use a cheaper, non-smart phone without all those features. They’ll also buy products to be enjoyed on their smartphones before they concern themselves with spending their money on things that are actually more important and of practical use. And they’ll spend that money on smartphone-related toys and amusements without angst.

        A handful of the women I talked to in real life took heed and are taking advantage of these opportunities, but most of the Already-Writing-As-A-Hobby AABW I told about the opportunities presented by Kindle would not listen. Even though many of them hate their jobs. Even though many of them are in constant danger of being laid off. Even though many of them are being mistreated by management on their jobs. Even though many of them are barely making ends meet as things stand.

        Meanwhile, other folks (mostly non-AAs) who don’t have these mental blocks are busy helping themselves to a slice of the money that’s available through indie publishing. Such as the hundreds of folks who wrote in to describe their experiences on this link:

        http://www.thepassivevoice.com/07/2014/indie-authors-quitting-their-day-jobs/

        Since you’ve been generous with sharing vital info in this thread, I will too: I would strongly urge anybody who has the slightest interest in writing and who wants to learn about the opportunities available with indie publishing to get the Kindling course by Geoff Shaw. It’s well worth every penny; and in my experience it’s the only Kindle self-publishing course anybody needs. [And I bought plenty of other Kindle-related materials before I bought the Kindling course a long while back.]

        http://geoffshawmarketing.com/

        I would also urge anybody who’s already bought the Kindling course to join the Kindling Facebook group. The information shared there by Kindling members is priceless.

        I don’t have any affiliate relationships with anybody. I’m mentioning this course because the skills it teaches and guidance it gives can help people create a financial lifeline for themselves. People are making money and paying some of their bills with the income streams they’ve developed with self-publishing. The truly blessed ones have been able to quit their day jobs altogether.

        There’s also the secondary market that I mentioned a couple of time on-blog. I knew the vast majority of readers were spacing out whenever I did posts about making money from writing.

        What I tried to tell folks is that you can also make money by servicing the writers who are self-publishing. If you’re naturally a grammar Nazi, you could offer your services as an editor and proofreader. If you’re an artist or designer, you could offer your services as an ebook cover designer. If you’re a photographer, you could hire some models in historical period-appropriate clothes, and sell stock photos for historical romance ebook covers. There’s an unfulfilled need for such stock photos (of people and couples wearing real historically accurate clothing, not Halloween costumes). Like this website:

        http://www.periodimages.com/-/galleries

        Unlike the bulk of AAs, other people are jumping on these opportunities. With both feet.

        You said, “I’m going to contact you through your website. When you’re ready to run ads (close to when you’re ready to pull the trigger, because facebook changes a lot within a short time span), hit me up and I’ll give you a brain dump on all that I’ve learned.”

        THANKS so much! Please do email me (the contact button at the Sojourners Passport site), and when I’m ready to make that move, I’ll let you know.

        • —This is part of why I laughed at the info you gave about the AA Black consumer mostly surfing the internet on smart phones (as opposed to having or using desktop computers): Many people—particularly the younger demographic who are almost surgically attached to their smart phones—will eat Ramen noodles all day everyday before they give up their smart phones and use a cheaper, non-smart phone without all those features. They’ll also buy products to be enjoyed on their smartphones before they concern themselves with spending their money on things that are actually more important and of practical use. And they’ll spend that money on smartphone-related toys and amusements without angst.—

          Absolutely. Furthermore, I truly believe that the rise in smartphone and tablet usage will put the vast majority of blacks further behind when it comes to technology.

          Why? Because people who aren’t tech savvy believe they know technology because they can use an i-device.

          So we’re going to have more and more people who believe themselves to be more competent than they are because they have this false sense of tech understanding from devices. Falling further and further behind those who use actual computers. Which is such a shame because leveraging technology is the modern day equivalent of a gold rush and too many aren’t taking advantage.

          Every single person who is reading this can develop a second income stream by leveraging technology. You’ve so generously listed many ways to think “outside the box” and the possibilities are too many to list.

          And when people read it and think “not now” or have a bunch of reasons that they can’t do it now (or ever) just know that somebody in a third world country WILL come for that opportunity and will get that coin.

  37. I was watching a program where the late Bobby Womack was saying that Sam Cooke wrote a song for him. He was going to sing it but Sam Cooke advised him to let these white guys, who he was referring to the Rolling Stones sing it and and Sam Cooke was saying how these white boys can get you more money. That is the reason why Oprah would have audience mainly of white because she knew who had the money. Oprah helped build schools when she became a millionaire ,but that help did not have the sting as if she was only helping one group of people because she had already established herself. She would raise money for Moorehouse and other Historically Black Colleges and University where she wasn’t deemed to give exclusive to blacks but they seen her work as more of philanthropy. I have know some blacks who had to have their white friends apply for apartments in nice areas just to get away from blackistan.
    We didn’t make these rules but we have to make sure that we use what is here to our advantage and help our families advance. I just play with hand I was dealt and become strategic in making sure I make smart, savvy moves to come out on top. .

    • First, l must give a big THANK YOU to Khadija for her life-enhancing work. I’m always on the hunt for excellent, uplifting, PRACTICAL methods and strategies to upgrade my life beyond the white-collar office job (from working-class background) that I currently have.

      I’ve never posted before on any websites that I’ve read over the years. I’m always a lurker. Discussing my opinions in such a public way is odd for me, and yes uncomfortable. But because I’ve received tremendous insight from her work, I’m de-lurking as a show of thanks and respect.

      I discovered Khadija’s blogs last year and read them through and through, and continue to return to the archives. Her work synced many patterns I had noticed and illuminated others of which I was completely unaware. It gave me the big picture. So I purchased her book because I believe in supporting positive works created for and by Black Americans with my money.

      I’m so pleased at the quality of her discussions and of her commentators. I discovered her blogs after she had shut them down. I’m grateful that she has left them up for me and others to find. I especially love the discussions on creating other streams of income, on writing and on traveling as this has been my own desire for a number of years! I’m working to accomplish them too.

      I also thank Evia. I’ve frequented her blog as well and purchased some of her materials.

      One Less Soldier, thank you for this blog. Your words echo what I have practiced for years. And I’ve grown more refined in that practice!

      All of you ladies are already light years ahead with the problems AND the solutions. For too long I was stuck in the problem and now, I’m all about solutions. I need to save ME. I need to get married and have children. I need to create multiple streams of income. I need to travel. I need to have the good life!

      Before I found Khadija’s blog I was busy strategizing on how to improve my life, which includes GETTING MARRIED and having at least one child. I’ve already wasted too much time already, but thanks to the above mentioned ladies I’ve realized I MUST broaden my horizons in my search for marriage. This has been particularly difficult because it seems that many quality men are already married by their 30s! And I’m in my early 40s.

      Anyway, I’m also thanking the commenters on this blog for their information.

  38. On the subject of allies, I have to admit, I found it very funny to log on LSA and see a majority of the women there refusing to be gaslighted about Janet Mock and supporting others who have not shown themselves to be allies of AA BW. It’s very interesting times now as BWE has reached critical mass and so many are either applying or half-heartedly applying BWE to their lives.

  39. I can only concur with Gina and Khadija with regards to business realities. I am also self-employed and my target customers have been based on where I can maximize my revenue not on race. Businesses are not charitable organizations.

    ^^I recommend any AA BW that is considering any type of business venture to recognize this basic principle and to decide up front if they have the “intestinal fortitude” to be a business person. One has to have a certain level of emotional detachment and to view things from a profit/loss perspective. This is especially true of any type of negotiations.

    As one of the long time commenters, I tip my hat off to the BWE Pioneers. I have been fortunate to have been living these principles before the name BWE was coined and have try to pay it forward by being a regular commenter primarily at Khadija’s old blogs to share what I have learned in the hope that it makes the road a wee bit easier for the next generation(s) to come.

  40. Hi,

    I hope I am not off topic here. I just want to add my contribution about “12 years as a slave” the movie, which was criticised by Ms Nassif.
    An article on Vulture (http://www.vulture.com/) voices similar concerns to those of Ms Nassif: Where Are the Serious Movies About Non-Suffering Black People?

    In conclusion, this movie will not uplift your mood.

    • Well I wish a AABW would make a Black Amelie. God knows I would pay to see it as well as donate to a kickstarter campaign

      I think this sort of movie could be one of many steps to changing the image of Black women.

    • @Khadeja

      OMG I love reading romance novels. I love reading vintage HP. I live for a good groval. Charlotte Lamb is a personel favorite.

      Anyway, about romance ebooks, the world is your oyester. You can key into what women readers are looking for. From whats selling it seems like women are enjoying fateed mates(paranormal), H loves h more etc…

      What I notice many authors doing even top authors like K.resley C.ol.e is breaking their novels into novelas sold for between 99-1.99 each. With novelas you may hook people who would not bite at $10.

      I would also suggest the fan fiction site to BW writers who want to test the waters. It’s how the author of 50 Shades Of Grey started out. You get free feedback, maybe get a following who will purchase your ebooks.

      Many people may frown at spending 10 bucks for an ebook but will drop a dollar on almost anything and think little of it.

      It’s like the people who play the penny machines at casinos thinking they are being frugal when they are often spending more than those playing 25 cents machines.

        • Oh how did I miss this comment OLS.
          *smile*

          I’ve read books by Patricia Willson and Sally Wentworth (The Judas Kiss) I think both are pretty good writers. Once Harlequin writers were forced to become PC, something changed. I tend to favor the vintage books of the 70’s and early 80’s.

          I have themes I prefer to read about like amnesia, love at first sight H, virgin h, H loves h more, I tend to like European, NYC or country/farm locals.

          I hate hate hate when the h falls pregnant right away, h and H have sex too soon and when the h chases the H.

      • Chicnoir,

        Thanks. I’ve already spent quite some time decoding Becky’s reading habits and Romance Reader Becky’s demographics. There’s quite a bit of research out there, such as the results of this study commissioned by the Romance Writers of America:

        http://www.rwa.org/p/cm/ld/fid=582

        Again, in the same spirit of generosity as Gina (who graciously told us for free the sort of market research that people pay good money for), for anyone who’s interested in getting their own slice of the Kindle-driven fiction gold rush:

        You have to find the intersection between the sort of fiction you genuinely like and what readers in whichever market you’ve chosen like. Because readers can tell the difference between things a writer is genuinely interested in versus stuff they whipped together solely to make a buck. Before I started writing romance, I never read “purely” romance books. But I do genuinely like all sorts of historical fiction, including those that have romance plots and subplots. So, historical romance is a comfy romance niche for me.

        I wouldn’t be able to write a contemporary romance (at least not at this point) because I haven’t found a subjective emotional “hook” that would make me even remotely interested in telling a story in that particular niche.

        Series sell more than isolated, stand-alone books. I’m aware that serials are popular, but I’m not going to do that. As a reader, I can’t stand being strung along and left hanging at the end of book. I don’t mind if there’s a larger overall arc that’s played out over several books (which is what happens in a series as opposed to a serial).

        But as a reader I prefer books that are complete stories in themselves (even if they factor into a much larger overall arc). To put it in the TV context, I hate cliffhanger episodes. I like episodes that wrap up the smaller storyline in that particular episode. Even if that one storyline is a small part of an overall arc that plays out over a season or multiple seasons, such as the overall arc in Babylon 5 or Wiseguy (which were some of the earliest shows that had season-long arcs, long before modern shows like Breaking Bad). Since I don’t like to be left hanging as a reader, I don’t do that to my readers.

        It’s usually good to have a unified design for multiple books in a series. That way, they’re easier to market as a collection. Also, a unified design makes it easier for readers/fans to recognize that any particular book is part of that series. Here are some examples:

        I don’t like the “kill, kill, kill” in his book titles/covers (nevertheless, it makes sense in the context of his chosen genre), but it’s easy for a shopper to tell that a book is part of his series:

        http://www.amazon.com/Andrew-Peterson/e/B0034P2DJO/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1406812406&sr=8-2-ent

        Obviously, with romance books readers expect to see a person or couple on the cover. With other genres, it can make more sense to go with an abstract background. The font is a little bit hard to read, but overall I like the unified look of this self-published author’s “Emperor’s Edge” series of book covers:

        http://www.amazon.com/Lindsay-Buroker/e/B004FSRHUE/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1406812542&sr=1-2-ent

        I’ve looked at several fan fiction sites, and I plan to write a few shorter stories to put them on Wattpad as a form of advertising for my paid stuff.

        What’s working best right now for a lot of indie writers is to have the first book in the series at “permafree” and use Facebook ads to drive readers to that free first book. [Which serves as a funnel into the subsequent paid books in the rest of the series.]

        • @Khadija,
          Thanks for more great insight!
          I didn’t detail it in my previous post, but I’m a fiction writer. For a number of years I’ve been studying and practicing my craft. Currently, what I write are children’s stories with Black children as the main characters (of course!)  . The kind of stories I would’ve loved to read as a child instead of ones that featured only White children. I had no desire to write for Black adults because I know too many of us don’t read and won’t purchase books unless it’s that atrocious “street lit” garbage.

          Anyway, for the past few years I’ve (unsuccessfully) experimented with various forms of online businesses aimed at the mainstream. I wanted a six-figure online business to support me while I wrote because most Black authors are NOT rolling in money. I’m not disheartened because I’ve learned A LOT from my attempts to create additional income streams. However, I’ve still been looking for ways to earn that kind of money and leave suffocating Corporate America and its drones behind forever.

          Which brings me to the point of my post: I’ve been over at the Indie voices link that Khadija posted and I’m STAGGERED by the number of indie-authors who have raked in piles of money!

          Although, I shouldn’t be surprised. I joined RWA a few months ago and have been combing through their VAST archives. I’ve been attending their meetings too, which are wonderful for me! Many of the WW writers there are BIG into self-publishing and have many speakers discuss this with us, including taxes, incorporating as business, writing under pen names, the list goes on. This group is a wealth of information and I urge any BW here that is serious about writing to join RWA. These WW are doing everything they can to earn BIG BUCKS from their writing and I am too! The group is very professional and a good networking opportunity as well as educational and fun.

          Before I joined RWA I hadn’t planned on writing for a White audience. But ever since last year, I’ve meditated on Khadija’s posts about stacking the deck for yourself as a Black Business owner. As well as the post about the Asian author writing for mainstream white audience (I also read the posts by author Roslyn Hardy Holcomb and that was another “aha!” moment—for me to think about writing Romance novels).

          This resonated with me as a Black author. I’m aware that many Black parents DO NOT emphasize reading to their children OR buy books specifically written by Black authors for children. So where does that leave a Black author besides broke? This was a deep concern for me—until I joined RWA. Then the answer was simple—write for White audiences too! And this way, my writing for a White audience, as an indie-published author will be my “six figure” business!  So I laughed when I saw that Khadija will use an Anglo sounding pen name, etc. Yes, that’s my plan too. I will not be writing “multi-cultural” romances either. Nope, White characters only. And I have no problem with it. And I’m not the only one.

          I’ve noticed in my RWA meetings — several of the BW in this group are already writing and PUBLISHING novels with ONLY white characters in them. And I agree with that! That is the smart thing to do because they are the largest reading group and they seriously gobble up these Romance books and spend MUCH MONEY to do so. I’m continuing to read within and research this Romance genre while I gear up to write them.

          So Chicnoir is correct, this genre ALWAYS has readers. I was at Barnes & Nobles the other day looking at the shelves and shelves of Romance books. So if anyone is interested in writing, I encourage them to pursue this avenue and “follow the (billion dollar$) yellow brick road.”

          My next step is purchasing this book:
          http://www.amazon.com/The-Naked-Truth-About-Self-Publishing-ebook/dp/B00DHPQGN0

        • Chicnoir,

          Thanks!

          Black Petals,

          You’re welcome! You said, “This group is a wealth of information and I urge any BW here that is serious about writing to join RWA. These WW are doing everything they can to earn BIG BUCKS from their writing and I am too! The group is very professional and a good networking opportunity as well as educational and fun.”

          Yep, other folks are SERIOUS about getting their money. Too many AABW have been indoctrinated into some Sista Soldiering head-trip.

          You said, “As well as the post about the Asian author writing for mainstream white audience (I also read the posts by author Roslyn Hardy Holcomb and that was another “aha!” moment—for me to think about writing Romance novels).”

          I also remember those posts. And, IIRC, Roslyn had also talked about this in some comments at a major White romance reader blog several years back. The Asian writer that came up in these various conversations was Tess Gerritsen of Rizzoli & Isles fame. I had no idea she was Chinese-American. She basically hid that fact until AFTER she got her fiction writing success and money:

          “After 22 successful novels, ranging from romantic suspense to New York Times best-selling medical and crime thrillers, Tess Gerritsen says she realised it had become time to truly embrace her own ethnicity in her work.

          While she has drawn on some of her experiences as a physician in her previous books, which have sold more than 20 million copies, it wasn’t until The Silent Girl, just released in New Zealand, that she strongly incorporated another important part of herself – her Chinese-American heritage.

          . . . Gerritsen started writing while on maternity leave from her job as a doctor in Hawaii in the mid-1980s. Her earliest novels were more romantic, and she recalls being advised by editors that books with Asian-American major characters weren’t successful, and that there was little marketplace for the Asian-American voice.

          That stuck with Gerritsen, the daughter of a Chinese immigrant and a Chinese-American, for a long time. Even as she toned down the romance and turned up the thrills as her career flourished, that reticence towards evoking her own culture remained. Until now.”

          http://www.nzherald.co.nz/entertainment/news/article.cfm?c_id=1501119&objectid=10750266

          Unlike far too many AABW, “Mei Ling” is in it to win it! Something else I’ve noticed about Asians over the years that’s a stark contrast with Latino immigrants: They’re smarter in terms of knowing what to do to avoid stirring up unnecessary enmity from [White] Americans. Unlike so many Latinos, Asian immigrants are more willing to learn English.

          Instead of automatically and arrogantly expecting Americans to cater to them by providing free interpreters in various settings (the way Latinos act), many non-English-speaking Asian immigrants have the common sense to bring somebody with them who speaks English. I’ve noticed this different behavior pattern in the court system. [Which will provide free interpreting service for all sorts of other languages—but Asian litigants don’t seem to come to court assuming that they’ll automatically be accommodated.]

          A friend who’s a nurse confirmed this. Unlike the Been Living Here For 10+ Years Without Learning English-Mexican patients who expect to be accommodated, most of the non-English-speaking Asian patients she’s seen will bring an English-speaking friend or relative with them.

          The other thing I’ve noticed is that unlike so many Latinos, Asian immigrants aren’t hung up on trying to force American English speakers to say their non-Anglo, foreign names with matching foreign pronunciations. If I said my name the Arabic way (which I don’t like) with a coughing-type noise for the “Kh” consonant sound at the beginning, nobody would be able to understand it.

          It’s gotten so crazy that I’ve even seen an Indian-American attorney make fun of some Latino attorneys in court about that: Instead of saying his Indian surname the way he usually does—in a way that’s understandable to English-speakers [meaning with the Anglo pattern of pronunciation]—he said his surname the Indian way when one of them asked him his name to write it down in their case notes. He did them the way a lot of them do non-Spanish speakers. All the other lawyers in the courtroom chuckled at that.

          The other smart thing a lot of Asian immigrants do is come up with an “American” first name to use when introducing themselves to Americans. And use their Asian individual names among themselves. They’re in it to win it—LOL!

          To bring this mini-rant back to the interests of AABW, Asians are preoccupied with doing what it takes to WIN in various scenarios. They don’t have the same self-defeating hang-ups and preoccupations that many others (most AABW, many Latino immigrants in certain contexts, etc.) have.

        • @Chic Noir, Khadija, Black Petals–

          I definitely agree that romance writing–all of those “intertwined sweaty limbs”–is here to stay forever. LOL! One of the most life-changing things I’ve done in my life was to write a romance novel (using a pseudonym) a while ago. It did quite well, was picked up by Random House and translated into several languages, etc. My main characters were blacks. I wanted to write a novel where the bw definitely got PLENTY of loving! LOL. So, I did that. One of the things I loved about the whole experience was the amount and variety of fan mail that I got from mostly blacks but also a few non-blacks! That was SO interesting and great feedback. An added plus was that I met some interesting people at book signings. I made a nice chunk of money, but I didn’t write the book to mainly make money. I agree that IF you’re mainly in it for the money, then connecting it to the widest money trail is paramount. Exclude everything else.

          However, although I found I was good at it, I found that pure romance writing was not for me even if I wanted to do it for money. I agree, Khadija, that some romance writers (like me, too) definitely need to find another focus that they can combine with romance that will keep them interested in continuing to write.

        • “Unlike so many Latinos, Asian immigrants are more willing to learn English” idk about that, come to Canada and you’ll see the opposite, they took over the grocery store in my area and built a Chinese one. It’s annoying because hardly anyone there speaks English. Chinese people come in flocks, they stick together and keep the money in the community for longer. It’s not that theyre really smart like White Americans stereotype them to be because they’re not. They stick together, in school I notice they’ll be one smart Chinese kid and they all pretty much copy from that person. Just giving my own experience, because I know in the US they have a lot of Latinos, whereas in Canada it’s Asians

        • Simi,

          I suspect the dynamics are different in different countries (what you’re seeing in Canada relative to what I’m seeing in the U.S.). Due to the different compositions and histories of different countries.

          In the U.S., Latinos don’t seem to realize this but other immigrant groups are pimping them the way they and other so-called people of color have pimped AAs’ civil rights martyrs. In the U.S. context, Latinos are the public face of illegal immigration and the main ones who are noted for their refusal to learn English no matter how many decades they squat in the U.S.

          In the U.S. context, Latinos are taking all the public relations “hits” while other types of legal immigrants and illegal aliens ride Latinos’ coattails to reap the benefits of bilingual requirements, amnesty for illegal aliens, etc. All without becoming the public face of illegal immigration and the arrogant refusal to learn the language of a country after moving there.

          For another example of this (in addition to the Asian immigrants I’ve seen and heard of here), Chicago in particular has had a huge Polish population for generations. Over the years, I’ve read references to there being numerically more Poles living in Chicago than in Warsaw at certain points in time. Many of them are illegal immigrants who don’t speak English; who are working as cleaning women and construction workers. However, they avoid rallying around illegal alien issues like the plague. The multitudes of illegal Polish immigrants here never put themselves on camera as the face of illegal immigration. You won’t see them at rallies or protests for illegal aliens, etc. And they generally try to learn to speak at least a bit of English. [Unlike Latinos, many of whom have attitudes when they encounter American hospital workers and others who don’t speak Spanish. They’ve really got this entitlement attitude towards bilingual services. It would never occur to me to move to another country and refuse to learn that country’s language.]

          In the U.S. context, I think part of it is that other people have seen the widespread enmity that Latinos have created for themselves in the U.S. with their belligerent refusal to learn English. Other, more sensible, immigrant groups see that this is not a good look and want to avoid stirring up the kind of mass animosity that kind of behavior creates.

  41. Hmmm, I saw where some commenters specifically addressed my comments.

    Neurochick, you said:

    Evia:

    “Well you know that I agree with you; I’m old school as well. I feel that AABW need to stop being people pleasers. We need to STOP wanting to be liked. If you’re a people pleaser, folks will not like you because they won’t be able to trust you. Have boundaries, don’t care about being liked and you will be respected.”

    Hmmmm—do you think that many AA women exactly want to be people pleasers? I don’t think anyone really “wants” to be “runners and fetchers.” IMO, these days, they are afraid NOT to be people-pleasers because they don’t want to lose the NV and LV people they are around. Many of the AA women I knew for the first decades of my life who were people pleasers were that way because it was a matter of having food on the table or for true reciprocity. They didn’t do it to just have a scrap of a man or fake friends. Big difference.

    And there are critical nuances within this “people pleasing” behavior that AAbw engage in these days. AAbw are not nearly selective enough in the people they please. They mostly try to please NV (no value) and LV (low value) people–even strangers on the street. People in these categories never or rarely ever reciprocate anything. It’s clear that these people-pleasing AA women do not VET and receive anything approaching ON-PAR reciprocity from MOST of the people who they bend over backwards to please because if so, they wouldn’t be left holding an empty bag in so many situations. So, I don’t think they should totally stop people pleasing; they just need to be more cutthroat selective in WHO they decide to please. If they direct 85% of their people pleasing energy toward pleasing the HV (high value) and MV (moderate value) people, they will stay ahead of the game.

    I was talking with a few of my white sister-in-laws (have about 7 of them) about this people pleasing behavior, and they pointed out that typical white women are also conditioned to be people-pleasers. Their view is that ALL women are conditioned that way, and that’s true, but I pointed out that the big difference is that ww belong to a socio-cultural SYSTEM where they receive built-in reciprocity for their people pleasing efforts; typical AA women do NOT. Nigerian women also bend over backwards to please their men and others among them, but their socio-cultural SYSTEM makes sure that they receive enough reciprocity from those men and from others in their cultural system. Typical AA women THESE DAYS do not belong to a socio-cultural SYSTEM. Period. For all practical purposes, they operate SOLO.

    There is NO system or actual culture to speak of among AAs. Dancing and singing in a certain way or soul food cooking, and being a “style trendsetter” and going to church more than other groups does not mean that AAs have a culture, as so many AAs seem to think. A culture is an organized set of tens/hundreds of thousands of interlocking tiny and huge parts that exist to meet the needs of a people, to enable them to continue as a group towards goals set at some point by that particular group in order to reach THEIR common destiny.

    AAs used to have a strong, fledgling culture that sustained us through hard times and enabled us to make phenomenal strides. We’re still coasting on the coattails of those strides. We haven’t actually accomplished anything as a group since integration. Those strides were so great until all POC, ww, and gay wm have enormously benefitted from latching onto the coattails of those strides.

    AAs were yesterday’s heroes. But as Dionne Warwick sang: “We don’t give medals to yesterday’s heroes because yesterday is over and we’ve got to live for today.”

    This leads me to my next response to a comment made to me above.

  42. Adeen, you said:

    “Woah, Evia, you sure have some amazing points. You are right, we need to build allies among ourselves as Black women. I am trying to spread the BWE message to other Black women I know. They need to hear this message”

    It’s GREAT that you’re trying to spread the BWE message, and it’s important to have as many allies as possible from whichever groups. But when it comes to alliances with other Black women, that’s tough sometimes because many of them have been so okey-doked by so many other blacks and so poisoned against themselves and other bw.

    As an old school bw from a certain place and time, I’ve always embraced bw BECAUSE a LOT of AAbw used to be there for each other. I wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for a lot of bw being there for me. Also, I was taught to trust any individual person of any background until they give me a reason NOT to trust them. So, I interact with people as individuals. However, I’m also a very good VETTER of both men and women and mostly, I don’t hesitate to cut someone off–without an afterthought–if they even begin to try to show me their hind parts. That’s just common sense and a self-preservation tactic that ALL AAbw should use.

    ______________________________________

    deb, you said:

    “I have seen some of the things Evia and Khadija have talked about. Going it alone is not good. As Evia always say, “Vet, vet and vet again.”

    AND

    “We simply do not love each other enough. Some of us are confused. Many of us are concerned about silly things that do not have any value.”

    Well, one Micomsa woman pointed out that many new school AAbw don’t know how to interact in a functional community. And love or no love, flying SOLO is a precarious experience. This is especially stressful to females. Very few survive to even get to the point of thriving. Human beings AND most higher level primates (the apes, monkeys and a couple of hundred other species) form groupings. I tell ya, sometimes, so many AAs do act like they’re a “brand new” life form on this earth! LOL This is why I really understand what Bill Cosby meant when he asked: “Where did these people come from?”

    In the MICOMSA Network, I knew that I would need to establish firm common sense rules (precepts) that were in sync with the way the real world operates, with penalties, and have strict enforcement for the good of us all and for the progress of Micomsa. I invited discussion about the rules and penalties so there was much input. The women who joined Micomsa welcomed the rules and penalities for breaking the rules because they were tired of the BAU (business as usual). They’d seen how BAU leads to failure upon failure. There were a few people who broke the rules and they paid the penalties without complaining.

    HISTORICALLY–
    The problem was even during the time before the Civil Rights movement, AAs did not confront the monster of colorism, the most serious form of RACISM or racio-misogyny. That monster was in our house or lying next to us in our bed since it lived in the hearts of the males. AA men and women used all of their energy to attack the white racism but pushed the black man’s racism under the house. The black man’s racism is now draining the money and sucking the spirit out of all the achievements that AAs have ever made.

    We have to face it that AA men and AA women have 2 distinct mindsets that have pretty much run on 2 different tracks for the past hundreds of years. Chiefly, the vast majority of AA men ALWAYS wanted to be with the woman who lived in the big house or a white woman and in order to get her, they knew they had to risk it all in order to break down the walls of segregation. This was a key aspect of their collective mindset all the while. This didn’t just suddenly materialize in the past 2 decades. Of course, they didn’t share that little part of their dream with AA women, but AA women should have been highly suspicious when they saw that the pattern of typical “successful” AA men for the past hundreds of years, was mostly always marrying the lightest woman he could get. AA men always escaped criticism for that by saying, “She’s still BLACK,” just like they now say that Kim K is not really white since she’s of Armenian descent. LOL Or they say that Michael Jordan’s new wife is not white since she’s Cuban.

    However, the AA woman’s dream was for her children to be able to not just have access, but sit at the table of power inside the WHITE HOUSE and get to be one of the power-holders slicing the power cake. These were TWO VERY different goals for AAs, but the women didn’t know that the men had that different goal.

    So, these days, if the police would just leave AA men alone now, I believe most AA males would be content because they’re now able to have the woman of their dreams. THIS is the primary reason why I’ve urged AA women to leave AA men alone and continue on towards THE original goal.

    And I’m going to say something here that some of you will not like. AA women are doing a piss-poor job of raising their children WELL. I know you don’t know how and it’s NOT your fault, and you can’t do it well alone but you’re still doing a piss poor job of it. Do NOT have children if you don’t know how to parent, or if you don’t have the financial and emotional resources to raise them reasonably well.

    Another thing is that a woman owes it to her children to find THE BEST quality father (not just sperm donor) possible for her offspring.

    deb, you said:

    “I agree. I remember about two years ago an all white female Greek stomp team won. They were good but, I honesty do not think they were better than the all bw team. There was some controversy about the people who voted for the winners. Yes, I think the judges were biased towards the white team. And, why stomp? It’s not part of your cultural up bringing?”

    I respectfully disagree with the part of this where you say that whites shouldn’t participate in stomping since it’s not a part of their cultural heritage. Likewise, I guess you might have thought that when I’ve gone skiing or ice-skating that those activities weren’t a part of my cultural heritage. Suppose I wanted to take up Flamenco or Hula dancing, the Spaniards in Spain and the Hawaiiians might criticize me and say those art forms are not a part of my cultural heritage since I’m black. Or would you criticize me for doing those dances? LOL While we were on vacation, Darren and I went to an African Music Festival where quite a few white women could do African dances better than me and lots of other black women. You’d probably feel they shouldn’t be doing that since that’s not a part of their cultural heritage. You see where I’m going with this?

    We are all FREE to live and learn as much from each other and participate in any activity we want. Why should anyone limit themselves? I’ve advocated for years that AAbw must break out of their “lane” and stop self-limiting. I can tell y’all now that no one is going to have much success in getting other groups to limit themselves, so AAs sound beyond pathethic to me when they complain about how whites and others are “appropriating” black culture. Instead of feeling that whites shouldn’t be twerking (as some blacks feel) or engage in stomping (as you do since it’s not their heritage), there is NOTHING stopping you from becoming a Flamenco or Hula dancer. I’ll bet that if you practiced enough, you could do those dances better than many Spaniard or Hawaiian women.

    Cultures and groups of people that exist right next to each other “borrow” from each other all of the time. Blacks “borrow” a lot from whites too and we don’t have to do that. Many of us could make our own clothes in our own styles. Instead we go and buy Euro styled and made clothes. People who study societies and the cultures in those societies–going back for thousands of years–have seen this throughout the history of humans on earth.

    • “And I’m going to say something here that some of you will not like. AA women are doing a piss-poor job of raising their children WELL. I know you don’t know how and it’s NOT your fault, and you can’t do it well alone but you’re still doing a piss poor job of it. Do NOT have children if you don’t know how to parent, or if you don’t have the financial and emotional resources to raise them reasonably well.”

      Evia, I’m glad someone has said this.

      About people pleasing, yes that is what I meant. I see too many BW throwing their pearls to swine. But still, there’s pleasing people because you are getting something out of it, and there is pleasing people just because you want to be liked. I’ve seen too many young women please men on NV just because they want to have a man, that’s what I meant.

      • Yes, Neurochick, the parenting issue is the BIGGEST issue of all.

        I’ve been toying with the notion of writing or podcasting about parenting, but where’s the time? My specialty used to be behavior intervention, so I would have an endless amount of info that I believe would be helpful. I counseled so many parents of various races and ethnicities who were NOT functioning as parents.

        With my ex-husband, I co-parented 2 well adjusted male children who are very productive, normal adult BLACK men–who are successful by this society’s standards. So this CAN be done and it’s not that tough if certain decisions are made and implemented early on. We barely ever had to lay a finger on our sons, but my old schoolness definitely helped. LOL!

        This many AA children don’t have to be running amuck out there, as evidenced in the stats. I get so tired of so many black parents blaming their children’s misbehaviors on their favorite scapegoat: “de evil white man.” Although this issue cuts across ALL races, ethnicities, and income lines, this is especially pressing for AAs.

  43. My apologies for going a bit off-topic but I felt it was necessary as “Peace walls” have been referenced.

    Here is a real example of what “Peace walls” will look like:

    http://www.rollingstone.com/culture/news/apocalypse-new-jersey-a-dispatch-from-americas-most-desperate-town-20131211

    Because AA’s refuse to;

    build something of their own (as the BWE pioneers have stated in various essays)
    address the criminality in those communities and
    refuse to address the massive OOW births which result in feral males and females,

    there will be MANY predominantly black failed cities like Camden.

    Those who pay into the system via taxes will be reducing or cutting off infrastructure services to those who are seen as a burden to the system –>Detroit cutting off water is only another preview of what is to come.

    For those who are still on the fence about leaving Blackistan, time IS running out.

    • Karen,

      You are SO right about the massive OOW births. Too many AA women are still having children with SBM (Sorry Black Men) and this continues the vicious cycle; fatherless boys and girls not knowing how to be in a healthy relationship, growing up and continuing the cycle.

      The problem in Camden though was that industry left because the company owners decided they wanted to get richer and realized that paying their employees a living wage wasn’t going to line their pockets, so first they left the Northeast and then the United States altogether. A lot of towns have gone belly up because jobs have become outsourced.

      I agree with leaving Blackstan, but be very careful when you leave. Many AA’s did leave Blackstan many years ago and you know what happened? White folks saw them coming and said, “Oh heck, here they come,” and moved. That has happened to someone I know right now, in Florida, she moved into what she hoped would be a nice area and now the white people are leaving. She is fearful that AAs of NV or LV will move into her area and her life and property value will go way down. That’s what happened to places like St. Albans Queens, Jamaica Queens and Babylon Long Island. I remember when those areas were mostly white, AA’s moved in and the whites fled. So when you leave Blackstan, make sure the area is in such a place that the whites won’t leave. It’s like how white people are moving to Harlem and areas of Brooklyn. Why? Because they don’t want to commute two hours to work and back every day, and they don’t want to spend money on gas and money to heat and air condition their homes so now they’re coming to the city because it’s economically smart to do so.

      From what I’ve seen AA’s should never, NEVER move to an area that’s secluded from the center of the town/city, if you do so, the government might decide to cut off access to the main city, this is happening in sections of Queens where the trains don’t run on weekends and after certain hours.

      • Neurochick,

        Yes, those industries did leave (as is happening all over America); but my first point is still valid. Had AA built their own infrastructure (own businesses, schools, grocery stores, etc.), we would not be so vulnerable to those in power because we would have power of our own; instead we are always begging for other folks to treat us right.

        Prior to civil rights, AA’s had black owned businesses, banks, etc. and were beginning to make real progress. Many families have the same story of their great-grandfathers having had businesses but with civil rights we translated “moving up” to buying anything that was “non-black” and “progress” to mean that we were being hired and promoted by white-owned firms and/or getting government jobs versus creating our own.

      • Neurochick,
        Gentrification is happening right now in my hometown, Detroit. 10 years ago when I bought my house in a historic neighborhood folks talked about me like a rabid dog. Why would you buy a home in Detroit?! EEEEKKKK! I had no desire to spend hours weekly to get to my workplace ( I hate rush hour traffic ). So I looked around my neighborhood & noticed something interesting….it was fairly diverse. So I took the plunge & went for it. Now there is a mass influx of suburbanites moving to my neighborhood & downtown proper. Young professionals live downtown & are working in high-tech green start ups. We have young families, older couples, & a new sense of vibrancy in the city. I don’t recognize areas of the city because they have been redone. I knew it was a new day when our current mayor was voted in by a wide margin. My suburban colleagues are now trying it figure out how to move back to Detroit. I now can do all my grocery shopping within the city limits. When I call the police they show up ( rare issue in my neighborhood ). You know who isn’t here? Pookie, RayRay ‘n ’em because they can’t afford the upkeep or taxes on homes. So where are they? In the suburbs, with the papier-mâché houses, limited public transportation, and easy means to isolate them. A lot of people are reclaiming the
        ” urban centers ” and geographically isolating undesirables. Not necessarily literal peace walls, but very effective geographic ones. Keep watching, the general population is tired of the ABC crew & measures are being taken to isolate them like the plague they are.

    • @ Karen

      I read that Rolling Stone article a few days ago. OMG this country is in trouble. They( the ruling class) have even decided to leave a sizable number of the White population behind.

      I reads like Parable of The Sower
      – Blacks left to fend for themselves.
      – Police retreating from policing.
      – drugged out White kids from the suburbs.
      – out of control theft.
      – murder becomes banal.

      The only thing missing are high rates of illiteracy* and cannibalism.

  44. Neurochick, you said:

    ” I agree with leaving Blackstan, but be very careful when you leave. Many AA’s did leave Blackstan many years ago and you know what happened? White folks saw them coming and said, “Oh heck, here they come,” and moved. That has happened to someone I know right now, in Florida, she moved into what she hoped would be a nice area and now the white people are leaving. She is fearful that AAs of NV or LV will move into her area and her life and property value will go way down. That’s what happened to places like St. Albans Queens, Jamaica Queens and Babylon Long Island. I remember when those areas were mostly white, AA’s moved in and the whites fled.”

    This is a topic that really needs careful dicing and slicing because there are lots of nuances here. The fact is that there are many blacks who have the money to move out of Blackistan into middle class and upper middle class suburbs and do so, BUT they take many aspects of the Blackistani mindset with them. I can’t speak for those whites (who most likely were racists) or anyone else, but I would definitely not want the children of these folks living near my children–no matter how much money they make or any amount of education the parents may have. The problem is that many AAs don’t exactly understand the kinds of thinking or behavior that is repulsive to some others of us, and I’m obviously NOT white. It may not actually be pure Blackistani thinking or behavior, but I know it when I see it and I know it’s not good for my children or grandchildren.

    Now, y’all can call me an elitest if you want, but I definitely didn’t want my children exposed to it, and when I saw it around us, I didn’t allow my sons to mix with those children and I either put them in private schools, or in a couple of cases, we moved.

    I’ve lived this experience, so I could write a book about it. This is why I keep focusing on MENTALITY. It’s MOSTLY the mentality of lots of AAs that needs to be revamped–if there’s to be any significant group progress.

    • Evia,

      I 100% co-sign. What you’re describing is why I cringe every time I hear a delusional “edumacated” AA person scorn what gullible fools refer to as the so-called “politics of respectability.”* Too many AAs use fake sophisticated-sounding political jargon to cover a total lack of common sense. All these big words and no common sense.

      *They’re not fooling anybody. That “politics of respectability” talk is primarily about excusing AA males’ mass habit of refusing to marry the BW they impregnate and their mass paternal abandonment of their illegitimate children. It takes a deliberate lack of common sense to avoid seeing the blinking, red-light-with-sirens-connection between AAs’ oow childbearing, single parenting and the lethal anarchy that exists in places like Chicago’s Blackistan areas.

      When I was a teenager (and still thinking on a childish level) I thought my aunt (and some other relatives) were snobs. And then I grew up and put away childish thinking. My aunt and others were right. They were right. By God, they were right!!! And they HAD to be concerned about these issues because they and their husbands were working hard to raise successful, productive children to adulthood. It’s easy to take a lax attitude when you’re not responsible for anything important (such as raising children).

      Money does not guarantee being a classy, hassle-free neighbor. Mister T had money. Living near him was apparently a nightmare for many of his neighbors. Formal education does not guarantee anybody being a classy, hassle-free neighbor. Having a “good job” does not guarantee somebody being a good neighbor. More importantly, none of that stuff guarantees somebody being a good—or even acceptable—influence on the children in one’s family.

      I’ve run across a lot of dysfunctional, formally educated AA strivers (specifically other AA attorneys who got a formal education and made it out of the ‘hood) with good jobs and money that I pray to God never move into my neighborhood with their oow children. Because they have ‘hood/Blackistan mentalities and behaviors. I don’t want them around me. Nobody with any sense does.

      The core problem with modern-day AAs is that we’ve allowed gutter/ghetto dysfunctional values to ascend the class ladder among AAs. I often enraged a lot of readers and stepped on the AA “3rd rail” at my blog by openly talking about AA class issues.

      http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/search/label/class%20issues

      I’ll repeat some things I said in the following post:

      http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/2008/10/art-of-majesty-part-2-imploding-black.html

      Imitating the Poor Leads to — Surprise! Being Poor! Who Knew?!!

      Our “good jobs” can’t be passed on to our children. It almost doesn’t matter. Many of our children can’t get or maintain a “good job” because they are emulating the Black underclass. I first found out about this article from Evia’s blog. It’s entitled “Black Culture Beyond Hip-Hop,” and it’s from the May 28, 2007 issue of the Washington Post. Here are some quotes. [My reactions are in bold.]

      Despite 40 years of progress since the civil rights movement, in the hip-hop era — from the late 1970s onward — black America, uniquely, began receiving its values, aesthetic sensibility and self-image almost entirely from the street up.”

      I was a teenager at the start of this mess. Many of us knew better. We hated the “music” and its message of self-degradation. We allowed ourselves to be silenced by accusations of being “bourgie. ” I will NEVER make this mistake again.

      “The historian Paul Fussell notes that for most Americans, it is difficult to ‘class sink.’ Try to imagine the Chinese American son of oncologists — living in, say, a New York suburb such as Westchester, attending private school — who feels subconsciously compelled to model his life, even if only superficially, on that of a Chinese mafioso dealing heroin on the Lower East Side. The cultural pressure for a middle-class Chinese American to walk, talk and act like a lower-class thug from Chinatown is nil. The same can be said of Jews, or of any other ethnic group.”

      Does anybody else notice how we adopt behavior patterns that are contrary to any known, surviving (much less THRIVING) group of people?

      “But in black America the folly is so commonplace it fails to attract serious attention. Like neurotics obsessed with amputating their own healthy limbs, middle-class blacks concerned with ‘keeping it real’ are engaging in gratuitously self-destructive and violently masochistic behavior.”

      And then we act surprised to see that we’re dropping out of the middle class and into poverty.

      “A 2005 study by Roland G. Fryer of Harvard University crystallizes the point: While there is scarce dissimilarity in popularity levels among low-achieving students, black or white, Fryer finds that ‘when a student achieves a 2.5 GPA, clear differences start to emerge.’ At 3.5 and above, black students ‘tend to have fewer and fewer friends,’ even as their high-achieving white peers are at the top of the popularity pyramid.’ With such pressures to be real, to not ‘act white,’ is it any wonder that the African American high school graduation rate has stagnated at 70 percent for the past three decades?”

      Sounds like White folks like winners. And we like losers. Maybe we need to get our children away from those who prefer losers, and into another environment? Do ya think?

      • —The core problem with modern-day AAs is that we’ve allowed gutter/ghetto dysfunctional values to ascend the class ladder among AAs. I often enraged a lot of readers and stepped on the AA “3rd rail” at my blog by openly talking about AA class issues.—

        Absolutely! I think the bitterest pill of all is coming to the honest realization that AAs carry low-class issues all the way through the socio economic ladder and that having the “accoutrements” of middle class and upper class lifestyles doesn’t mean anything.

        And I particularly agree with your statements about Asians and their efforts to assimilate to win, vs Latinos and their attitudes (that mirror AAs) of “I’mma be me and you just gonna have to deal.” The only saving grace Latinos have (vs AAs) is that they have strong communities, support each other, and have their own sub-economy.

    • Evia:

      I could NEVER call you an elitist at all. I mean my parents sent me to a private school in the 1960’s because they thought the local public school was filled with children they did NOT want me to be around, I know very well what you are saying. Some AA’s will still say ignorant stuff like, “Black folks don’t swim/ski/travel.” It’s the mindset that keeps a person from getting a passport, here’s an example. My mom knew a woman from her hometown; her daughter, who is now my age, had a beautiful singing voice. She got an offer to study music abroad, but she didn’t go, the reason? She was afraid because people in her church told her: “White people are prejudice in Europe, they’ll lynch you.” I’m not kidding, this is what she was told. So this girl never went abroad, in fact as of today, she’s never left her home town.

      Fear is a powerful thing. Some fears are necessary, but others can cripple you.

      OT, I’m watching “Running Wild with Bear Grylls” (a good show to watch regarding getting over fears) and I can’t wait to see Tamron Hall’s episode.

  45. I know this may be OT for this post but I feel the need to share this. It’s about my experience with Mammy Mules and why AABW really have to STOP this insanity.

    I knew a woman who was a mammy mule, she wasn’t a friend but I knew her well enough to say hello to her, but I did know her deal. What happened was she supported her family to the detriment of herself; she put everything into them and they did not do the same for her when she needed the help. She wound up losing her home because she used all of her money to care for children, grandchildren daughter and son in laws, etc. I don’t know what happened to her after she lost her home, but someone shook their head and said how angry they were that none of the adults who lived there could put two nickels together to help her out.

    My first boss was a white, Jewish woman. She and her husband had a beautiful home in the suburbs, they had two children and raised them there. When her children had grown up, and her husband retired, they sold their home (for a good price mind you) and moved into an apartment in a very well heeled neighborhood. She told me, “I raised my children, they are adults and can care for themselves, there’s no reason for us to have that big house; we’re doing what’s best for us.”

    My boss was a smart woman, not selfish nor self centered. She’d done her job, she educated her children, and true, things were different in the 1980’s, college costs weren’t insane and jobs were easier to come by but that doesn’t mean your children should be allowed to run you over.

    I see the ghetto mentality, I see generations of AA children hanging out in the streets at all hours of the night, while children from other nationalities are home in bed, after studying.

    Here’s another ghetto mentality, people spending hundreds of dollars on fad clothes and then not having money to spend on necessities like medical expenses or dental care. Don’t spend your money on clothes, they depreciate in value; spend your money on your health and on having experiences, because those things are lasting and will help you live longer.

  46. Khadija, you said:

    “They’re not fooling anybody. That “politics of respectability” talk is primarily about excusing AA males’ mass habit of refusing to marry the BW they impregnate and their mass paternal abandonment of their illegitimate children. It takes a deliberate lack of common sense to avoid seeing the blinking, red-light-with-sirens-connection between AAs’ oow childbearing, single parenting and the lethal anarchy that exists in places like Chicago’s Blackistan areas.”

    The AA intelligentsia and upper class AAs (and I’m talking mentality here), refuse to be brutally honest about this situation because they know nothing will change anyway. And the public infighting would just be horrendous. AAs are SO hardheaded; they don’t listen to ANYBODY and always want to argue with you even when you’re throwing them a lifeboat. And I know I’ve mentioned this before, but just look at how AA men slammed Obama when he told them they need to be more involved fathers. OMG–they couldn’t get over the audacity of the president of the United States trying to tell THEM what to do! LOL!

    And anytime Bill Cosby utters any common sense, so many AAs go into a feeding frenzy. So why would anyone make themselves a target for that when they don’t have to. Nothing will change anyway.

    In groups where the males know it’s their responsibility and role to steer the group to higher grounds (mostly all other groups), the bulk of the males do NOT go from woman to woman donating sperm and leaving their children defenseless because they know that’ll make their job that much harder. But the bulk of AA males clearly show that they don’t have a clue about leadership. A leader leads. If a man is leading towards anywhere sensible, women will see that and will follow. I’ve read where these males complain that bw won’t follow them. SMH This is because the women know the males are not headed toward higher ground. Women WILL follow men toward higher ground because women constantly crave security and safety.

    • —The AA intelligentsia and upper class AAs (and I’m talking mentality here), refuse to be brutally honest about this situation because they know nothing will change anyway. And the public infighting would just be horrendous. —

      I completely agree. At some point you throw up your hands when you personally have no dog in the fight and realize it’s an uphill battle, because to continue to try to help those who won’t be helped eventually becomes muling.

  47. Here are some links to some interesting conversations about the Columbusing of IR Romance fiction for anyone who’s interested in getting their own slice of the Kindle-driven fiction gold rush:

    http://roslynhardyholcomb.com/2014/08/03/on-the-columbusing-of-interracialmulticultural-romance/

    http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/1469127-suzanne-brockmann

    Here’s Suzanne Brockmann bragging about how she opened up the market for “diverse” romance fiction.

    http://www.readaromancemonth.com/2013/08/day-26-suzanne-brockmann-embracing-the-other/

    I happen to agree with Roslyn and Sharon about the dynamics involved in this mess. When it looks like something is making money, “others” are quick to vamp on it. Nevertheless, I feel that—similar to the mini-discussion in this comment section about the Black beauty and hair industry—there are some structural forces at play. As always, speaking for myself only:

    It’s not the modern WW consumer’s fault that AA consumers will happily buy romance novels, movie and TV series DVDs starring White characters while White and other nonblack consumers generally WON’T buy romance novels, movies or TV shows starring a Black character. There will NEVER be any sort of reciprocity in this particular context.

    Entertainment products are about consumer fantasies. For the most part, AAs/Blacks are NOT a part of nonblack consumers’ fantasies. And certainly not an integral part of nonblack consumers’ fantasies. Nonblack consumers are quite happy, comfy and cozy in fictional worlds that don’t have a single AA/Black face in them. I don’t see that changing because healthier ethnic/racial groups are focused on SELF. Their dreams and fantasies revolve around their OWN group.

    AA consumers are willing to enjoy a vicarious experience through the lens of White characters. By contrast, nonblack consumers generally insist on seeing and enjoying vicarious versions of themselves in books, and on the screen.

    To put it bluntly, the American romance market is Becky’s market. Becky does NOT and WILL NOT fantasize about (or particularly enjoy seeing) a BW being cherished and adored by any man. That’s not Becky’s go-to fantasy or daydream.

    Becky’s daydream is all about seeing Becky being cherished and adored by all sorts of categories of men. That’s a structural problem. In my view, NO amount of complaining is ever going to alter this core dynamic.

    It’s not Becky’s fault that the AA consumer happily consumes a steady diet of all-White entertainment products—products that render AAs invisible and non-existent. AAs don’t have a publishing industry of our own (the way White people have one of their own) because we don’t support the existence of such. Which leaves us desperate to see Black faces on the screen and leads to a certain segment of us being willing to support (and practically guaranteed to support) low-quality mess that has Black faces. Other people know this, and cash in on this dynamic by creating low-quality mess that’s directed at AA consumers.

    • I’m not surprised, it’s been coming for a while. The columbusing started in the self-published side and now its making its way up the ladder. Part of me is angry and part of me doesn’t care because I plan on using white only characters to get my own piece of the pie from WW readers.

      • I agree with IamKM.

        This type of deceit by some White writers coupled with the REFUSAL of the majority of Blacks to support any positive portrayal of our image is why I intend to carve a large portion of the WW readers for myself by using White only characters in my Romance novels.

        Now, I will continue to write my children’s stories with Black children as the main characters. I’m NOT giving that up. However, I’m realistic in understanding it doesn’t have the potential of making piles of money like writing for a White audience.

        So I’m ensuring my financial success with my writing one way or another. Under no circumstances am I willing to hinge my writing fate on the Black masses. Most AA’s have been programmed to enjoy Black people practicing only debased behaviors.

        That’s the prime reason why I watch very little television or listen to any contemporary Black-oriented music.

    • OLS,

      You’re welcome!

      IamKM & Black Petals,

      I feel the same way. I’m annoyed by all of this. But the bottom line is that AAs are (and will remain) vulnerable to this Columbusing thing because we don’t have anything of our own. And we don’t have anything of our own because of crazy/slave-mentality AA consumer behaviors. AAs’ ongoing undeclared boycott of Black business has other negative effects that most of us don’t realize.

      One example of this is in the court system. AA/Black judges HAVE to be afraid of angering White prosecutor’s offices with their rulings because we don’t have Black law firms the way White people have White law firms of various sizes (solo, small, medium and huge). When White judges lose political favor by not doing what White prosecutors tell them to do, they can find jobs at large White firms. Many White judges come from private firms. And they can go back to their firms—with prestige as former judges—if they want to.

      By contrast, most AA/Black judges come from either: (1) jobs as government attorneys, or (2) solo practice law firms. If a AA/Black judge loses their robe for whatever political reasons (the most dangerous thing career-wise for a judge is to anger a prosecutor’s office), they don’t have a safety net of jobs to go back to. If they were in a solo practice, they don’t have a business to go back to because they closed up shop to start working as a judge. There aren’t any major or large AA firms because AAs don’t support AA businesses, including our refusal to patronize AA professional services. And, quiet as it’s kept, the few “name” AA firms that Black laypeople have heard of heavily hire NONblack attorneys.

      To put it in the context of Chicago-area judges’ salaries, Black judges here better do whatever White prosecutors want them to do because they don’t have any realistic way of replacing the $183,000 annual salary they get as a [full circuit court] judge.

      I’m going to display my ego here—LOL! I feel that any so-called professional who can’t figure out a way to feed themselves without being utterly dependent on a j-o-b controlled by somebody else doesn’t deserve to call themselves a professional. What I described above is why I have very little respect for the multitudes of needy, dependent judges I’ve seen (of all colors—the dependent employee mentality comes in ALL ethnic/racial flavors).

      The public isn’t aware of this, because they hear the title “judge” and assume that those individuals have actual authority and power. NO, the bulk of them only have authority over nonwhite litigants, and White litigants who are lacking in wealth and clout. The vast majority of judges—who have NO way of replacing their current salary on their own—are as vulnerable as the workers flipping burgers at McDonald’s. Even with such large salaries. This is because true and lasting victory in the game of life is mostly about mindset (as Evia often says). The real deal is that most people create lifestyle expenses that match (or exceed) whatever salary they get. It takes rare emotional discipline to live beneath one’s means.

      Anyhoo, AA/Black judges are the most economically vulnerable judges of all. Because we don’t have a legal industry of our own. We have a group of solo and small Black firms filled with AA attorneys who have to spend more time that nonblack attorneys on chasing down their clients for their money. [Many AA consumers don’t want to pay other Black folks money.]

      Having more AA/Black judges hasn’t and won’t significantly increase the odds of AAs being treated fairly in the court system. Which is yet another heavy price all AAs pay for our mass refusal to support Black businesses.

      • Khadija Nassif, you said:

        ” The real deal is that most people create lifestyle expenses that match (or exceed) whatever salary they get. It takes rare emotional discipline to live beneath one’s means.”

        If you spend less than you earn, you’ll always be rich.

  48. Gina, you said:

    “I completely agree. At some point you throw up your hands when you personally have no dog in the fight and realize it’s an uphill battle, because to continue to try to help those who won’t be helped eventually becomes muling.”

    Well, maybe because of my old school background and where I grew up, I personally believe that I have a lil dog in the fight–lol, but at the same time, I know that among AAs these days, it’s necessary to cut your losses and just walk away. I know that I and mine can’t co-exist in proximity to people with the gutter/ghetto values that the vast majority of AAs have consumed. It would have been very detrimental to my children especially if I’d allowed them exposure to these folks, and I didn’t have children to allow them to end up in anybody’s pen or negative statistics.

    Re social classes, there’ve always been people of relatively different classes in ANY group and this was also the case among AAs Down South where I grew up. But ALL AAs were lower class (economically) at one point. Prior to the Civil Rights era, those AAs who had worked their way up to become business owners, teachers, doctors, ministers, those with more education and skills, like brick masonry, etc. were considered higher class. No one translated that to mean “better than.” ALL AAs lived among each other in those days. There was no separation needed because each segment understood the relationship and they knew that the relationships were critically important. So they treated each other in a certain way to honor those relationships. Of course, people argued and fought sometimes but they knew they needed each other, so things would kind of work their way out because they knew this would affect them and their entire family.

    . Those in the lower class looked up to those in the higher class. The higher class blacks were role models and the leaders in the community. Blacks in the lower class wanted their children to emulate Mr. or Mrs. So-and-So in the higher class or the children from higher class homes. The higher class AAs generously helped out the lower class blacks in all kinds of ways, helping out financially, giving LOTS of practical assistance, tutoring, teaching skills, lending cars, tools, equipment or other things that a lower class person might need, etc and they hired other blacks in their businesses or homes. This enabled more of the lower class blacks to improve their situation and with each generation, more of them were able to join the higher class. But in those days, the lower class blacks WANTED to move up and they knew they had to do their part– and with NO EXCUSES. Period. They were also thankful to those who helped them and they knew they had to help others. And did.

    And ALL AAs did their best to raise their children well. Everybody had to carry their own weight. Therefore, hometraining was of paramount importance!!! This was a KEY value shared by ALL black folks during that time of whatever class. Keeping your house and yard clean or general cleanliness, making sure children had good hometraining, and conducting onesself with decorum in public were vitally important. OMG! You would be verbally massacred in the community REAL FAST if you didn’t do your best at those 3 things. LOL! If you were doing dirt (and all people have always done SOME dirt), you had best be discreet about it because once your reputation was gone, you AND your family would have to face dire social consequences.

    Just about all of those folks were illiterate by today’s standards, but I want to stress that they ALL understood that if the children weren’t raised well, NONE of us were going anywhere. This, of course, meant that women needed husbands, and men needed wives to set up a home and then BOTH play their position to raise the children well as well as meet other needs of theirs.

    Old School Me was shaped by that community. Those are my roots. I left home the year I turned 17 and I never went back there to live. But those roots have served me SO well! Those roots are what I’ve been sharing on my Ezine all of these years. LOL Not much else. And I know all of this sounds SO old-timey, but it’s not. This is how most present-day groups STILL think and operate.

    As I said, most AAs in that place and time throughout most of the Deep South were either totally or mostly illiterate but they understood that the family is the most basic unit and that there would be no group progress without that basic unit functioning well among most AAs. Other groups know this too. But a woman can make lots of individual progress too when she’s married. My ex-husband was my #1 supporter in all ways when I went to grad school. When I was writing the book I mentioned above, he did the initial proofreading (since he learned English grammar perfectly in Nigeria), etc. There’s been much reciprocity in my marriages. These guys have definitely elevated my life in countless ways.

  49. Neurochick:

    You mentioned that you thought that the story about an acquaintance who lost her home because she chose to put others before her needs may be off topic. I believe that it ties in perfectly with the conversation because most of what we have been talking about centers on how to properly identify allies (i.e. people who really care about us). Your acquaintance wrongly assumed that her family members were her allies because they shared the same blood. However, they were nothing but users who did not understand the concept of reciprocity, so when your friend was on the verge of losing her home no one felt like they should be the one to step up and help like she did countless times before. Being generous and kind is important and a virtue, but I think more goodnatured people should more vigorously vet the individuals that they choose to help for their own sake especially when helping could endanger their own wellbeing, comfort, or safety. They need to give people time to show them who they really are before making huge sacrifices, so they don’t end up casting their pearls before swine!

    There are too many stories of people who have made tremendous sacrifices for others and then had the people who they helped turn them away in their time of need. Personally, I’ve started negotiating with people when I agree to do favors (i.e. work for free). For example, I’ll say, “Sure, I don’t mind doing X. Now that you mention X, it reminds me that I need help with Y. Do you mind helping me with Y?” That way, I am benefiting in some way from the exchange, and I don’t need to wait years after continuously helping someone to find out that they are selfish. I learned my lesson after providing free transportation to a “friend.” I didn’t ask for gas money (and it was never offered) because I was helping a “friend.” Only to find out that said person wasn’t truly my “friend,” but a user of the worst kind. True friends reciprocate to the best of their ability. Fake friends don’t even try and don’t even care to try. Since then, I’ve become more strict about the people who I associate with, let into my life, and help.

    I was watching a YouTube video where Karyn Calabrese, a health food guru, was saying that she was probably the most selfish person in the world because she makes a point of putting herself first. She went on to say that because she takes care of herself she is in a much better position to help others. While I’m not sold on her diet (i.e. raw veganism), those words did resonate with me. BW need to focus on themselves and their emotional, financial, and physical wellbeing, and we need to only pursue paths in life that will improve our quality of life. We can not effectively help anyone if our own houses are in disarray. We also need to resist the pressure put on us to do the heavy lifting in other peoples lives (i.e. help out every relative, friend, baby daddy, etc. that needs money, food, or shelter). Most BW are working hard to support the dreams, desires, and demands of other people while neglecting their needs and wants. If BW put all the effort that they put into sista soldering and caping for other people into their projects, goals, and dreams, a lot of the issues plaguing BW would be resolved.

  50. THANKS, OLS. And thanks to all of YOU here who have given kudos to me and my work!! It warms me and means so much to me.

    OLS, I want you to know that there are many readers who are following these discussions on your site. They’re not commenting here, but I’m hearing from SOME of them.

    Anyway, y’all know that people send me a LOT of info. Actually WAY too much sometimes. LOL!

    But this popped up about 15 minutes ago: 64,000 Black Women MISSING across America

    Just WOW!! I just wish this was just a part of a horror movie script, but it’s not.

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2088428/The-shocking–forgotten–toll-missing-black-women-U-S.html

    Just shows that BWE needs its own news organization/business, but we already know that most AA women wouldn’t support that since it wouldn’t be focused on AA men and because as Khadija points out, AA women tend to boycott black businesses.

    SMH! Is this story even mentioned at all in those rags: ESSENCE or Ebony or on any major internet site where so many AAs congregate and run off at the mouth?

    I tell ya–the attention of AA women is SO scattered. No one is looking out for them and while they’re pressured in all kinds of ways to soldier for alla our people, NO ONE is watching THEIR backs. I would bet that most of these women and girls who are missing were duped by predators who know that AA girls & women are softhearted and caring and are always trying to save somebody or look out for other folks. Predators study their prey before attacking.

    AA women need to make a DECISION this morning and decide to go in one direction or another–whether they win, lose, or draw and then NEVER look back. When anyone sits on the fence wavering, they become a prime target. As the saying goes: “When you hesitate, you’re lost.” Salespeople LOVE hesitating prospects. LOL! They know they can usually get those types of folks buy. Too many AA women are still on the fence, sitting like SOLO birds, with a very scattered focused and becoming targets. Just look at the various popular sites where AA women congregate! Those sites hog AA women’s attention and keeps it focus on 50 different things daily and the overwhelming MOST of those topics don’t deal with anything that zeroes in on steps in elevating or protecting AA women. The topics do nothing but keep AA women focused on frivolous things or emoting all over the place and lashing out at others.

    And here’s the key: The elevation of AA women has NOTHING to do with AA men these days. AA men and women are on completely different trajectories NOW. And as some AA men rise, they’re making it very clear that they won’t be lifting up average AA women.

    Y’all should be THANKING them for letting you and other women you care about–know IN ADVANCE.

    AA women have the female card and you ought to be also thanking your CREATOR for that card! We have MUCH to be thankful for! AA women need to drop the bravado, humble themselves, and put maximum attention toward LEARNING how to use their female card effectively and then put that learning to good use without any explanations to anybody. Nature gave you your parachute prior to birth. And nature has not changed no matter what ANY black or other person may say.

    I bet my female card that nature had my back. And I won. YOU can too.

    Y’all carry on. But before I go, I want to share this with y’all: Ever wonder why many bm sometimes get quiet and won’t discuss certain “important” things even though bw will keep trying to get them to talk about this or that? Or if the man does talk, he’ll say something ho-hum or won’t say anything much. Well, my oldest son told me that many bm do that because they KNOW that the less they say, the more bw will just keep talking and blabbing their REAL feelings and opinions and that way, the man can find out exactly what the woman’s WHOLE program is and always keep her hoping and hopping. This way, he stays in control and gets what he wants from her.

    But trust me–bm are NOT the only ones reading these discussions. Many others are reading them too, and for the same reason. I know there are real concerns about doing so, but some of you need to set up a private forum and charge enough money to discourage those with the wrong intentions. It’s just not wise to publicize your game plan.

    However, I will not participate in the private forum–if it materializes–because I think I’ve already contributed enough openly, and I do have a few other projects. 🙂 Love y’all!

  51. @Khadeja

    http://www.bellanaija.com/2014/07/28/what-is-black-lets-talk-about-acting-whit.e/

    So remove the period between the t& e (t.e/) at the end to visit the link.

    Anyway this is just an example of what Khadeja was posting about. No she does not hate no AABW nor does she think foreign born BW are the enemy. She thinks AABW should concern themselves with matters of self first. Just as other groups of Blacks do.

    The blog linked above is from a Nigerian* blog where by and large the commenters are not happy to see a topic they view as one concerning AAs. The comment by Engoz certainly isn’t the most harsh and she keeps it real.

    If other groups of Blacks are able to draw boundaries, why can’t we? BWE is for all Black women but just know that some threads pertain to AABW. There is no need to runway from the movement or lambast AABW for looking out for self when other groups do the same thing.

    *In my experience the most

  52. Chicnoir,

    Imma say some more things out loud here. {warning—LONG comment coming—LOL!}:

    Respectfully, I appreciate your diplomatic approach. 🙂 You’re speaking as if the foreign Black haters and slanderers of BWE (oh, I’ll pick an example out of thin air—such as the Canadian* “elegant hoodrat**” who probably still lurks here) are confused. They’re not confused.

    Anybody who genuinely wishes well for another person has NO problems with that other person setting boundaries. These foreign Black haters were haters from the very beginning. It’s just that they’ve been unmasked as the baseline consciousness-level among AA women has risen as a result of BWE.

    Everyone, please note that I’m ONLY talking about the foreign Black haters and slanderers of BWE. Not the non-AA Black women who participate in these conversations in good faith, fellowship and solidarity.

    There are typically a couple of things going on with the bad-faith foreign Black haters that hover around BWE circles. Among other issues with some of the various types of counterproductive people hanging around BWE blogs, I discussed in the following post (because from the very beginning I could see some problems brewing just underneath the surface), I mentioned:

    http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/2009/02/open-letter-to-those-who-support-bw.html

    “Some commenters are foreign-origin Blacks (West Indians and Africans) who come to these forums as voyeurs to insult AA men (and AAs in general) under the guise of supporting BW. These West Indian and African commenters rarely mention the many dysfunctions of their own societies. Or their own oppression as women within these societies. I had to ban one such foreign-origin voyeur from this site.”

    Another motivation that’s driving some of the foreign Black haters that hover around BWE circles is that too many gullible AABW allow them to exercise leadership and influence (over AABW) that people from these women’s OWN ethnic groups NEVER accord them.

    This, among other related issues, is what ultimately led to my falling out of fellowship with Rev. Lisa Vazquez years ago. She always made a point of self-identifying as a “Black Puerto Rican,” but yet she wanted to preach to, preside over, and exercise leadership and influence over African-American BW. Everything that I saw her preaching about were actually African-American Black women’s issues. NOT Puerto Rican women’s issues. And then she would get angry whenever anybody pointed out that she was an outsider when it comes to discussing AA issues (especially since she made a point of self-identifying herself as something other than AA).

    I doubt her fellow Puerto Ricans ever accorded her any sort of leadership or influence over them. My other major point of friction with her was that she would denigrate AAs’ ethnic identity (claiming that we don’t have one, and that we’re somehow ethnic blank slates) while making sure to hold on tight to her “Black Puerto Rican” self-identification “card.”

    It’s similar to the dynamics with Stokely Carmichael. This man had to come among African-Americans in the U.S. in order to exercise any sort of leadership (over AA followers). {rhetorical question} Did large numbers of folks (or anybody, for that matter) in his Trinidadian homeland give him the sort of deference that silly, gullible AAs did? As far as I concerned, the same with Shirley Chisholm. She had to be among AAs in the U.S. to do certain things she apparently couldn’t do in the Caribbean. Nobody talks about that. Nobody talks about how AAs have a pattern of helping make other folks’ dreams possible—dreams they typically can’t fulfill back home.

    Imma say it the rough way: I don’t blame these non-AA others. This is ALL our fault as silly, gullible, kumbaya-poisoned AAs. Nobody except kumbaya-poisoned and coalition-brainwashed AAs allows other people to preside over them. It took several years of BWE consciousness-raising for a critical mass of AA women to wake up, smell the coffee, and start setting boundaries with various outsiders. And to stop knee-jerk caping for these other people.

    It’s similar to the deficit that exists in most AA Christian negro male preachers that so many AABW listen to. These negro male preachers ONLY exercise leadership over women. They are NOT leaders over other men. Which disqualifies them as far as I’m concerned. If a male preacher can’t command the respect of and influence other men, why in world should I listen to that individual? The same applies to non-AA Blacks who want to preach to AAs. If they can’t create a following among—and exercise influence among—their OWN ethnic group, why in world should I listen to that individual?

    There are some other considerations (such as inter-cultural sensitivity and courtesy) involved in cross-cultural preaching.

    Ladies, be aware: all sorts of people come among us to do things they CAN’T do among their own people. This applies to all sorts of behaviors and contexts. Some negative, some neutral, a few positive.

    NOTES IN THE MARGIN–

    *Incidentally, many West Indian-Canadian Colored Girls With “Face-tee” Attitudes are living in a glass house. And perhaps should refrain from throwing stones. From what I hear from my sources in Canada, many of the same dynamics are currently playing out there. From what I’ve been told:

    (1) Lots of West Indians came to Canada in the 1980s and 1990s. Large numbers of Africans came there in the early 2000s.

    (2) Far too many of the West Indians who came showed their rear ends, and the criminals and deviants among them brought their 3rd world slum behaviors to Canada. And the immigrant West Indian criminals/deviants have been “face-ty” in their bad behavior as guests in Canada. [Head-scarf flutter in salute to a commenter named AK for my borrowing of the “face-ty” [feisty] terminology. {chuckling}]

    (3) Since Canada is seemingly a much more polite society than the U.S., they’ve started quietly cracking down, and restricting the numbers of West Indians allowed to even temporarily enter the country on visitors’ visas.

    (4) So, apparently, even decent West Indian relatives of current Caribbean-Canadians who want to visit have been increasingly denied visitor’s visas. And when they apply for permanent residency, the Canadian government politely buries them in endless paperwork. They do this instead of quickly saying “No” up front. Again, they’re a much more polite society than the US. But the end result is the same—increasing numbers of these folks are apparently being denied entry (even temporary entry) into Canada.

    Oh well…this sort of thing is what happens when folks wear out their welcome. That’s not my problem, that’s their problem.

    **I say “hoodrat” because it demonstrates an ignorant hoodrat mentality to arrogantly presume to do cross-cultural preaching at other people when you don’t even comprehend what’s going on with these other people. And to cop an attitude when the people you’re preaching at tell you that you don’t understand what’s going on with THEM in the context of their OWN country and their OWN ethnic history. That’s downright crazy. There’s nothing “elegant” about that sort of behavior.

    • Well said.

      I doubt her fellow Puerto Ricans ever accorded her any sort of leadership or influence over them. My other major point of friction with her was that she would denigrate AAs’ ethnic identity (claiming that we don’t have one, and that we’re somehow ethnic blank slates) while making sure to hold on tight to her “Black Puerto Rican” self-identification “card.”

      This is a personal pet peeve. Most of the world listens to music made by African-Americans both the good and the bad. The high fashion world of Europe is known for copying styles of dress from African Americans. Even things like nailart have been taken over by Non African-Americans. Remember when nail art was seen as tacky and ghetto. Now middle aged White women are working at Vogue rock nail art.

      Every time I read an article about the top nail artist blah blah blah, I have yet to read one about an AA nail artist or any Black nail artist unless it’s on a
      Black website or publication. The exception is a Black British woman.

      Far too many of the West Indians who came showed their rear ends, and the criminals and deviants among them brought their 3rd world slum behaviors to Canada.

      I’ve come across Jamaicans talking down to AA’s about criminality etc.. I’ve had to ask Jamaicans about the murder rate in Jamaica SILENCE! IIRC a few years ago Jamaica had the highest murder rate in the world.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Crime_in_Jamaica

      (claiming that we don’t have one, and that we’re somehow ethnic blank slates

      This is interesting coming from a West Indian considering they are the descendants of slaves just like we are. I’ve had to point this out to Black West Indians and the conversation dies lol.

    • It was Rev Lisa Vasquez’ attitude and approach to AA ethnicity versus Puerto Rican and other black ethnicities that actually made me engage in proper thought as it concerns this issue. That was when I actually began to consciously see AAs as a distinct ethnic group. It just made no sense to me that AAs, black Caribbeans and black South Americans etc all got to those shores via similar means yet Jamaicans, Haitians, Panamanians, Puerto Ricans etc are ethnic groups but AA is not. I think this is a perfect example of the kind of nonsense that happens when people refuse to set boundaries.

      I have a lot of respect for her and the work she did but even in all that I could see the bs where she was insisting it was alright for blacks of other ethnic groups to have their spaces that didn’t include AA, multiracials could have their spaces that didn’t include AA, yet AA women couldn’t (I don’t recall her saying this verbatim but that was the feel I personally got from some of her stances and comments).

  53. “This, among other related issues, is what ultimately led to my falling out of fellowship with Rev. Lisa Vazquez years ago. She always made a point of self-identifying as a “Black Puerto Rican,” but yet she wanted to preach to, preside over, and exercise leadership and influence over African-American BW. Everything that I saw her preaching about were actually African-American Black women’s issues. NOT Puerto Rican women’s issues. And then she would get angry whenever anybody pointed out that she was an outsider when it comes to discussing AA issues (especially since she made a point of self-identifying herself as something other than AA).

    I doubt her fellow Puerto Ricans ever accorded her any sort of leadership or influence over them. My other major point of friction with her was that she would denigrate AAs’ ethnic identity (claiming that we don’t have one, and that we’re somehow ethnic blank slates) while making sure to hold on tight to her “Black Puerto Rican” self-identification “card.”

    I remember all this quite well, and it was at that point that I really started to see the need for there to actually be specific, self-identified AA ethnic group, (as opposed to just ‘Black American’, which would encompass any Black person who was an American citizen). Not to belabour the point, but I did find it rather peculiar that, IIRC, she identified solely as ‘Black Puerto Rican’, even though, once again IIRC, her mother was AA. Especially as she did mention on several occasions that she intended to adopt a Puerto Rican baby in the future, but did not seem to have any emotional pull towards adopting an AA baby! (I do remember her mentioning a son she had already adopted/fostered, but I cannot remember his ethnic background).

    Many folks are wilfully dumb that they somehow believe that their Black ancestors got the ‘the Americas’ via a different way, and had a much different history. The Black folks in southern American countries, particularly Cuba and Brazil, have almost entirely adopted the culture of the local Indian and ‘Browner’ folks. Bar a few pockets of those who still have deep cultural ties to specific communities in certain West African countries, the only thing that would differentiate them from the non-Black population around them is their skin colour, and the fact they are just that much poorer than everybody else. I don’t mean to sound insulting towards Blacks in South American countries, but it is worth noting that unlike Black folks in America, the Caribbean and Africa, there hasn’t been a single, successful emancipation movement by them.

    • Not to belabour the point, but I did find it rather peculiar that, IIRC, she identified solely as ‘Black Puerto Rican’, even though, once again IIRC, her mother was AA.

      -I found this odd as well.
      ——————————————————-

      I don’t mean to sound insulting towards Blacks in South American countries, but it is worth noting that unlike Black folks in America, the Caribbean and Africa, there hasn’t been a single, successful emancipation movement by them.

      I think this probably plays a significant part in why black South Americans (with the exception of Panamanians) seem to have such an issue with being seen as black. Where even the blackest looking person would call themselves every name under the sun other than black. What a lot of them fail to realise is that they are displaying a real lack of racial self-respect, and if one doesn’t respect oneself, no one else will.

    • *Many folks are wilfully dumb that they somehow believe that their Black ancestors got * to* the ‘the Americas’ via a different way, and had a much different history.

  54. {another long comment; there are nuances that can’t be said in a soundbite}

    JaliliMaster & FoxyCleopatra,

    I agree with what both of you are saying in your comments above. I deeply appreciated and respected Rev. Lisa’s work in terms of introspection. Because I believe that’s what’s at the core of solving most of the difficulties AABW face. It takes a willingness to engage in introspection to examine the ways in which one is often complicit in one’s own oppression; and to STOP cooperating with one’s own oppression.

    Most of the African-American males who demean and degrade Black women in public are being fed directly or indirectly . . . by AA women. African-American women buy their “music,” see their films, read their books, follow their blogs, agitate in support of them getting tenure, and so on. African-American women control most of the money within the African-American collective. We’re the ones who are making most of the consumer purchases that prop up the African-American males who hate us. The short-term answer is simple:

    Stop feeding the Black men who hate Black women. Stop feeding the Black women who persist in supporting these Black men. When you stop feeding things, they cease and desist. One way or another. So, introspection to get AABW to stop feeding the people who hate us is essential.

    It’s when Rev. Lisa’s discussions touched on ethnic and racial issues that they went off the rails, as far as I’m concerned. There was also the bit where at one point she was advocating that straight BW (read=AABW, I don’t think this type of talk was ever directed at Black Latinas, Caribbean BW or African women) take up with Black so-called “trans men” because of the numerical disparity in terms of AA women and men. And also because of so many AABW’s unwillingness to date out. I didn’t care for that suggestion, to put it mildly. I felt it was rooted in a basic disrespect for AABW. But, that’s my view. Everybody’s mileage can vary.

    But it all gets back to AAs prior mass cluelessness about setting boundaries with other people. Part of it is rooted in the kumbaya-coalition-Pan African, etc. indoctrination that most AA misleaders have shoved down our throats for over a century. Another part of it is due to most AAs conflating race with ethnicity. Another part of it is a basic lack of ethnic or racial self-respect among most AAs. Another part of it is the long-term effect of literally having any and all ethnic and racial self-respect physically tortured out of most of us during slavery and Jim Crow. That history can’t be forgotten or minimized.

    With the (tainted for reasons that are too long to get into here) exception of the old Nation of Islam (in terms of large AA organizations), AA leaders never staged any sort of ethnic/racial self-respect intervention with AAs to root out ethnic/racial self-DISrespect. The vast majority of our (mis)leaders have been just as racially/ethnically self-DISrespecting as the masses.

    One of the things I appreciated most about the old NOI is that Elijah Muhammad understood the sick and wounded psyche of the North American freed slave. And he built his program around that. He knew that it would take active, heavy-handed, and constant intervention to break the North American freed slaves’ mental chains.

    As Rev. Albert Cleage (father of writer Pearl Cleage) discussed in his book Black Christian Nationalism, all the other AA groups (like the NAACP, the Panthers, etc.) tried to advance a liberation agenda with AAs just as they were—deeply sick and wounded. Which is why AAs have an uninterrupted pattern of turning past solutions into new disasters.

    There are almost endless examples of this. 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). The lack of a racial/ethnic self-respect intervention reinforced the AA perception that SHOPPING WITH NON-BLACKS = FREEDOM, ACCEPTANCE & PROGRESS. So, most AAs get an emotional high from shopping with non-Blacks. It makes them feel “free” to have their money accepted by non-Black others. They don’t get any emotional satisfaction from patronizing their own people’s businesses.

    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 episode. “I’m just celebrating all of who I/we am/are.” “AAs are a rainbow people.” “It’s just a preference for light skin.” Etc. While the gendered colorism suffered by AABW among AAs not only remains, but has escalated in the past 30 years.

    I see things this way because I came to BWE from a previous political and social orientation towards Black Nationalism. Meaning, I came to all this from a personal background of active appreciation of my ethnic and racial heritage. Unfortunately, most AAs operate from a default position of: “Nobody else will ‘let’ me be anything else, so I guess I’m Black/AA.” AAs will get angry if you describe their self-image in this manner, but that’s what their commonly observed ACTIONS announce to the world.

    That’s why so many of Elijah Muhammad’s phrases still resonate. Such as “Accept your own and be yourself.” The bulk of AAs don’t want to be themselves. Most AAs want to be somebody—anybody—else. Which is why AAs are so comfortable having all sorts of outsiders preach over us, preside over us, lead us. And so comfortable with having biracial women replace BW in movies and music.

    Because we’re so frantic to latch onto other people, AAs traditionally allow NON-Blacks and Black-skinned NON-AAs to have command and control over what are supposed to be our organizations. AAs allowed White men like Kivie Kaplan to be the head of the NAACP at least until the late 1960s. We allowed West Indians like Stokely Carchmichael to run and set policy for some of our civil rights organizations.

    While other people (quite sensibly) don’t allow outsiders to make “command and control” decisions in terms of ethnic issues. Nobody else allows AAs to rule over them in their own organizations. Nobody allows AAs to set policy for or have command and control over THEIR ethnic and/or political organizations.

    And I don’t blame others for not allowing AAs to control their critical “stuff.” Only a foolish group of people allows outsiders to set policy for them. No matter how close an alliance is, or how long it’s lasted, NO responsible government gives it’s nuclear codes to an allied government. There are certain things that sensible people keep control over restricted to themselves. AAs love to give our “nuclear codes” to non-AAs.

    I’m just happy that a critical mass of AABW have raised their consciousness levels, are engaging in introspection (as Rev. Lisa advocated), and are taking self-loving action to raise the quality of their lives. Which includes cultivating racial/ethnic self-respect and setting healthy boundaries with other people.

    • Thank you for this comment. It is SO spot on, especially when you mention the wounded psyche of the freed slave. So true.

  55. “(3) Since Canada is seemingly a much more polite society than the U.S., they’ve started quietly cracking down, and restricting the numbers of West Indians allowed to even temporarily enter the country on visitors’ visas.

    (4) So, apparently, even decent West Indian relatives of current Caribbean-Canadians who want to visit have been increasingly denied visitor’s visas. And when they apply for permanent residency, the Canadian government politely buries them in endless paperwork. They do this instead of quickly saying “No” up front. Again, they’re a much more polite society than the US. But the end result is the same—increasing numbers of these folks are apparently being denied entry (even temporary entry) into Canada.

    Oh well…this sort of thing is what happens when folks wear out their welcome. That’s not my problem, that’s their problem.”

    The Canadians have past that point. Now, they are quite upfront, officially , that they don’t want any more Caribbeans entering their borders. You will not see more ABC behaviour from anyone than you will from the majority of Black fools that move to Canada from the Caribbean. Many of them already have a very poor grasp of proper English, and make a point of NOT learning to speak French just to ‘keep it real’. When they hear another Black person speaking French, because, you know, it’s the second most spoken language in the country, they start getting an attitude.

    I remember in the beginning of the BWE movement, when so many were willing to talk about the ills of bm, the bc etc, as long as the focus was only on AA men and the bc in America. The moment any mention is made of their home countries, they start copping an attitude. No group of bm date out more than Caribbean men in the UK (& wherever else they go), yet many of the Caribbean-origin BW, were only willing to talk about their marriage prospects within their West Indian countries, where the majority of folks are Black. They wouldn’t tell you that once they leave those shores, those men, by and large, do not include them in their dating choices. They wouldn’t tell you about the caste system that exists in their countries, where someone of, say, Rihanna’s complexion, would never be allowed to date someone of, say Morris Chestnuts complexion, because her parents just would not allow it. They (like everyone else), keeps the dysfunctional and embarrassing aspects of their cultures hidden, unlike the majority of AAs, who are willing to put it all on front street. As a result, many others are then able to use AAs to make themselves look better, even though in their home countries, things are just as bad, if not much worse!

    I’m not trying to throw shade on Africans (my Mum is African), but let’s be real here, many of those that are in the West are either those who are citizens of western countries, those whose parents have enough money to send them here for a western university education, or those who have enough money and/or education to be able/allowed to immigrate here. So many are starting from a somewhat different baseline than other Black folks. After all, wouldn’t all the other black folks in these countries happily emigrate to somewhere in the west? But they can’t because they fall way too short of the criteria, so their only hope is a green card. In the UK, one is almost as likely to see an African sounding surname as an English one (and hence, most likely a Caribbean), when there is a newspaper article about the members of a gang that were convicted. This happened because unlike in the 50’s, 60’s and early 70’s, the Africans that were in the UK, were either from well-to-do or middle-class families, that attended boarding school and/or university there. In the 80’s, they started letting the dregs in. That’s part of the reason that many still have the, in my opinion, false impression that the black gangs in uk are Jamaican ‘yardies’, and other West Indians. The African males that were born or grew up here are almost indistinguishable from their Caribbean counterparts in every single way. The difference is that they hide the bad behaving ones from public view, resulting in people having the impression that the Africans are the educated ones while the Caribbeans are the criminals. This could not be further from the truth.

    Whenever folks try to throw shade and tea on you, all you need to do is point out the dysfunction in their own home countries and amongst their own ethnic group. That tends to shut them up, because they rarely have any response!

  56. Rev Lisa Vasquez never once said that she was not black. The bulk of the ideas of the BWE movement comes from Rev Lisa Vasquez’s blog which was entitled: Black Women Blow the Trumpet.

    Some people share two ethnicities, and because they were raised by one parent, they choose that parents’s ethnicity. Rev Lisa Vasquez, if anyone remembers, said she was raised by her Puerto Rican father. Her mother had died.

    There is a big difference between ethnicity and race.

    A black person born in Barbados or of Barbadian ethnicity is still Black . Simply because they consider themselves Barbadian does not mean they are denying being Black. Why should these people abandon who they are when they or their parents come to the United States?

    “Many folks are wilfully dumb that they somehow believe that their Black ancestors got * to* the ‘the Americas’ via a different way, and had a much different history.”

    If you visit the Caribbean(Spanish, French,English, and Dutch speaking) and a good part of Latin American countries(whether they have many blacks there or not, ), you will find more of an African culture or authentic Black, and Black, meaning good , and not Black meaning bad, as many are apt to believe, than there is in in the United States.

    Food, folkloric dances, religiosity, speech,, secrets,home remedies,etc and all sorts of traditions that have become intertwined with Western traditions to somehow still stand out as very distinctly African, where everybody knows it is African when they see it, feel it, hear it or taste it.

    Black people in the Western world have been living on these shores for a very long time(centuries) and many of them just like African Americans identify with their country of birth.

    Blacks in the Western world have always taken the nationality and thus ethnicity of their country of birth or that of their parents with utmost pride. Example, St Lucian, Jamaican, Puerto Rican, Trinidadian,Guyanese, etc.

    If this offends or confuse anyone, it is because they are not proud of their ethnicity .

    Black people throughout the Western world should be proud of their ethnicities because everyone else is.
    I am married to a white man who is. soo proud of his ancestry that he constantly talks about where his grandparents are from. And most of his white friends do the same thing.

    Africans also do it too; they never cease to say they are Nigerians, Kenyans, or Ghanaians. Some of them even go into more ethnic specific and say they are Yorubas, Igbos, Ashantis,or Luyos.
    All of this has nothing at all to do with race, and when one group shows pride in their ethnicity, they are not offending another group who may share the same race with them.

    • Josephine,

      On the one hand, I like loyalty. In terms of my own ethnic group, I think it’s a very good thing that more AABW are learning to speak up in support of the BW who helped them as individuals. I hope that more readers who appreciated Rev. Lisa Vazquez’ work speak up in support of her work and add their voices to this conversation.

      I can disagree with another activist regarding certain issues, and still deeply appreciate that person’s work regarding other issues. That’s how I feel about Rev. Lisa’s work. I have no problem or hesitation in praising the aspects of a person’s work that I agree with. As I did when I praised the parts of Rev. Lisa’s work that I’m thankful for—such as her emphasis on introspection (as I said in my earlier comment).

      It’s okay for activists and anybody else to have points of disagreement.

      You said, “Rev Lisa Vasquez never once said that she was not black.” Who said she said anything like that? I haven’t seen anybody say that here. I don’t know what it is that you’re responding to when you say that, because I didn’t see anybody make that claim.

      You said, “All of this has nothing at all to do with race, and when one group shows pride in their ethnicity, they are not offending another group who may share the same race with them.”

      Showing pride in one’s ethnicity is a good thing (which I think I’ve mentioned in my earlier comment above). I have pride in my ethnicity. All that is great. So, I can agree with that part of your statement that I quoted above. Nevertheless, nobody gets to pick and choose what another person finds offensive.

      I don’t celebrate Kwanzaa, but I DO believe in its principles, including the principle of Kujichagulia/Self-Determination for all peoples of the world. Every people’s right—including AAs’ right—to define ourselves, name ourselves, create for ourselves, and speak for ourselves.

      That means outsiders—any and all persons who self-identify as something other than AA (persons who self-identify as somebody ELSE)—don’t get to define AAs’ ethnic identity or culture. Much less get to claim that AAs don’t have one. Outsiders don’t have any legitimate place in that type of internal conversation. And I notice that nobody even tries to go there with anybody except AAs. Because other people have boundaries and would never stand for it.

      You said, “The bulk of the ideas of the BWE movement comes from Rev Lisa Vasquez’s blog which was entitled: Black Women Blow the Trumpet.”

      {record scratch sound} NO. No, I’m not going to let that revisionist history pass. NO, “the bulk of the ideas of the BWE movement” DID NOT come from Rev Lisa Vasquez’s blog which was entitled: Black Women Blow the Trumpet. NO, that’s not true or accurate.

      Rev. Lisa Vazquez was ONE OF SEVERAL early voices. As I recall, the BWE pioneers such as Evia, Sara, Halima, Focused Purpose (who in recent times has focused on religion) and some others were already blogging before Rev. Lisa became known.

      In my view, what Rev. Lisa DID do moreso than anybody else in the early years of BWE was:

      (1) bring the importance of introspection to the BWE reading audience’s attention (she took the conversations deeper than where they had been at that point in time);

      (2) popularize and spread the idea of “divestment”/BW divesting from the Black community; and

      (3) tirelessly spread the word about her blog AND about other BWE blogs throughout all corners of the Black blogosphere (unlike some of the BWE-lite latecomers, Rev. Lisa’s efforts didn’t revolve around self-promotion).

      I greatly admired the systematic way she made the rounds at all sorts of Black blogs spreading the word about (and praising the work of) several BWE bloggers. She would comment at (and spread the word about divestment at) all sorts of “mainstream” Black blogs that I just didn’t have the fortitude to deal with. I often had the experience of running across all sorts of Black blogs that were new to me, and discovering that Rev. Lisa had already been to that blog several months earlier leaving comments. Including comments about divestment, and also comments that encouraged readers to check out some of the pioneers’ blogs.

      Among the other praiseworthy accomplishments I mentioned above, Rev. Lisa Vazquez was quite thorough, systematic and generous in helping to increase the audience for other BWE blogs. Thereby increasing the reach of the ENTIRE BWE movement.

      I believe that BWE’s success came sooner than it otherwise would have BECAUSE of how thorough, organized and systematic Rev. Lisa was in spreading the word.

      That was one of several things I deeply admired and respected about Rev. Lisa’s work. Again, having points of disagreement does NOT equal condemning someone’s work.

      • I saw your comment on your own blog today, and came back to comment here.

        I was one of those readers who benefited from Rev. Lisa’s work. I came to her blog from your blog, which was also of great benefit to me, as well as Halima’s, Evia’s, Faith’s, Sara, and Gina’s (there were other bloggers in that cohort, but these were the ones I mainly frequented.)

        What I respected about Rev. Lisa’s blog was what I also found valuable in the BWE writers: but the unflinching honesty, the level of critical analysis and the explicit desire to be focused on uplifting BW. I didn’t always agree or even quite understand the viewpoints of the authors I encountered, but the information given there was truly life changing, and I deeply appreciate the WORK that authors put out there.

        I can honestly say that the quality of my life has been substantially improved by not only what I learned to do, but how I learned to think. I don’t mean in terms of nebulous feelings, either. I mean areas of my financial, social, and romantic life have improved by utilizing what I learned from the early BWE writers.

    • “Rev Lisa Vasquez never once said that she was not black. The bulk of the ideas of the BWE movement comes from Rev Lisa Vasquez’s blog which was entitled: Black Women Blow the Trumpet.”

      I have great respect for the work she did, and her blog made me think about certain things very deeply, explored issues that were only previously touched upon, etc, so I’ll just ignore that comment, but say that you are wrong. There were several early pioneers in BWE, Rev. Lisa was one of them. But to say that her blog provided the “bulk of ideas of the BWE movement “, does that even sound credible to you. Just think of what it is you are actually saying!

      “Some people share two ethnicities, and because they were raised by one parent, they choose that parents’s ethnicity. Rev Lisa Vasquez, if anyone remembers, said she was raised by her Puerto Rican father. Her mother had died.

      There is a big difference between ethnicity and race.”

      You are responding to something that nobody said. The issue was not about anyones’ ethnic self-identification, it was about wanting to define for others what their ethnicity should be, and going as far as to say that that ethnicity (AAs), did not actually exist!

      I do not know why you are so confused about this. From your comment, it would seem that you are either of South American or Caribbean ethnic-identity, and proudly identify as such. That is a good thing. It is vital to have racial and ethnic pride/self-respect. So why begrudge others, in this case AAs, from exercising the same right?!

      _____________________

      “If you visit the Caribbean(Spanish, French,English, and Dutch speaking) and a good part of Latin American countries(whether they have many blacks there or not, ), you will find more of an African culture or authentic Black, and Black, meaning good , and not Black meaning bad, as many are apt to believe, than there is in in the United States.”

      I sense so much shade in that comment! I will not point it out, but I’m sure others can figure it out.

    • You know what, I am going to exit this conversation. I have a feeling that in a bid to dismiss what is being said, some will turn it into one trying to attack Rev. Lisa, as opposed to just having a very different position on an important issue. No one is going to do me like that! Bye.

    • Josephine,

      As much as I am trying hard to give you the benefit of the doubt that you are not trying to stir up nonsense….I can’t. I have re-read the comments that i as well as others made and cannot figure out what it is you are responding to. Who said anything about Rev. Lisa not calling herself black? In fact didn’t Jalilimaster mention that she said she was black Puerto Rican? My point simply was that why is it fine for other black ethnic groups to identify as such and have pride in their ethnicity/nationality but then some people want to deny AAs the same? What does me making this point have to do with the comment you wrote.

      As for this….”The bulk of the ideas of the BWE movement comes from Rev Lisa Vasquez’s blog which was entitled: Black Women Blow the Trumpet.”……..I’m not even going to go there with you. I had something to write in reply but after reading Jalilimaster, Khadija and Evia’s reply, I’ve got nothing more polite to add. Black Women Blow the Trumpet was definitely one of the 5 or so early BWE blogs I used to frequent the most, but to say the bulk of BWE comes from her is beyond disrespectful to the other BWE pioneers! By the way, didn’t Rev. Lisa dislike the term ‘movement’ being used to describe her blog?

      • By the way, didn’t Rev. Lisa dislike the term ‘movement’ being used to describe her blog?

        True, she insisted that it was a ‘Think Tank’, and I had no problem with that position, so that is what I referred to her blog as.

        It is good to give people their due, but in the process, be wise to not diminish or erase the effort that others put in.

    • “The bulk of the ideas of the BWE movement comes from Rev Lisa Vasquez’s blog which was entitled: Black Women Blow the Trumpet.”

      This is not so. The main voices of the early days of BWE were Evia, Halima, Gina at WAOD, Aimee, Sara and a few others. The Rev Lisa was there as a voice in the conversation, not as the leader of thought.

  57. @Josephine–You said:

    “The bulk of the ideas of the BWE movement comes from Rev Lisa Vasquez’s blog which was entitled: Black Women Blow the Trumpet.”

    Now, Josephine, why did you come here with this LIE? Do you think we all have amnesia? I had retired my boxing gloves but I’m a tireless fighter when I need to fight, so I’m ready to slug this one out forever–if necessary. Enough is enough! So put up or shut up! Normally, I stand clear of these types of online slugfests but I’m ready. This is just WRONG.

    I, too, value Rev. Lisa for urging AA and other bw to look inside at the role they play in their plight, but unless you can show and prove that Rev. Lisa started posting the primary talking points of BWE ideology–and in this particular framework–prior to July 2006, I’m calling BS on this. One of the MAIN reasons why I’ve hesitated to move my main site and the various related sub-sites of mine on Typepad is because I KNOW that folks like you are going to step forward to say that they, or someone else of their choosing, are ones who invented BWEology. We know how this goes. I knew the Columbusing of BWE would begin at some point because it’s been effective!! So, in the interim, you’ve decided to advance Rev. Lisa’s name. LOL! Are you serious or is this a trial balloon you’re floating? A LOT of us (Khadija, the names she mentioned, etc) have contributed to this body of work and some of us beat the drum tirelessly about various aspects of it more than others, and some of us have shrilly amplified certain parts of it more than others, and Rev. Lisa made a worthy contribution, but she was NOT the contributor of BULK of these ideas.

    I got into putting forth and promoting some of these major BWE concepts AFTER I ran across Halima Anderson under attack on a black nationalist site back in late 2005/early 2006. I looked her up and saw that she was promoting IR dating for bw who were interested in going that route, and since I was IR married, I wrote to her to lend my support to what she was doing.. Also, there was another woman, a black biracial British woman whose writing pointed me at the ways in which bw’s image was being defiled by bm, but despite how she was aware what bm were doing, she still defended them. Of course, Halima pointed out the vileness of this pattern, and pointed out that a very similar desecration of bw’s image was occurring in the UK by bm there. I was of the same mind as Halima and tossed my hat into the ring because no one was going to freely pee on my grandmother’s image and AA women of her ilk–on MY watch without a fight. So, if anything, HALIMA ANDERSON, is the originator of both the foundation and some of the current flesh and blood ideas of BWE. Mind you, this was 2 years before I ever heard of Rev. Lisa. So, you’ve got to PROVE that she was writing about these concepts PRIOR to July 2006 because that’s when I started from the beginning talking about a host of very basic concepts like ‘first and foremost’ and bw supporting other bw and only supporting those who support them (RECIPROCITY)–that to me were just simple common sense.

    So, where’s your PROOF? Surely, you have it. Other than that, you must think we are FOOLS. But if you can prove it, I’m more than woman enough to apologize to you.

    I was the one who put forth the commonsense concepts such as bw Marrying Well, hypergamy, the Magical Thinking that plagues many AAbw, the DBR mentality of many AA men, the critical need for bw to Vet, escape/marry out, blacks being perpetually surprised, AAbw being okey-doked, the need for a RUCOSS, the value of intentional communities for AAbw, and I could cite some more key concepts that are now a part of BWE. Most of my billion-word articles are still online–lol– along with the dates and the ones that are not there on Typepad are on Bloigger.

    Okay . . . .Insofar as anyone claiming they’re NOT AA, I’ve never cared about that. I’m AA and my ancestors were too. I don’t care whether anyone else is. I’m enough all by myself as long as others who say they’re not NOT AA don’t step up to share in the any part of the pie that AAs have fought for and won and don’t look for support from AAs when their azz is being fried.

    I do NOT approve of trying to force anyone to acknowledge their AA-ness. I don’t care about them and if they ever need help, my boundaries are always in place, so I can ignore them easily. I don’t even waste my energy talking to them. And it sickens me that other AAs try to force other blacks to be black or be AA. UGH!!! It shows a total absence of racial or group pride to try to claim people who don’t want to be a part of your group or race. Being an old school AA is something GREAT to me!! I don’t need anyone else to share in that greatness. However, my sons are partially Nigerian and partially AA. We emphasized their Nigerian culture when they were growing up because there were a lot of progressive, family-minded Nigerians around them who were very willing to practice and teach the culture, whereas so many AAs have abandoned the fledgling culture that AAs used to have–that culture that brought us up to and through the Civil Rights era and enabled us AND ALL other blacks in this country, ALL POCs, ww, and gays to make great strides in this country. It’s not my or my children’s fault that others AAs have lost their minds and willfully abandoned AA culture. I understand the importance of culture, and I knew I needed a cultural umbrella under which to raise my sons.

    I am VERY thankful to the Nigerians and other Africans who were a big part of helping to shape my sons into the young men they are today and to the Nigerians and other Africans who contributed in various ways to supporting ME. The fact is that I’ve always been able to count a lot on Nigerians and other Africans for support during the decades and even now when more than a few AAs refused to support my entrepreneurial pursuits or only do so when they felt like it. It’s the stone cold truth when Khadija says that AAs tend to boycott other AAs products and services, no matter how high quality they are.

    So, I am always going to support those who support me and I will support them first, since I believe STRONGLY in on-par Reciprocity.

    • I am glad you said this Evia, your whole comment, because I was cautious of how to refute what she was saying without some folks out there trying to turn it into some kind of attack on another BWE blogger.

      I thank you Evia, because it was through you that I was first exposed to BWE. I was still in my teens the first time I landed on your site (I am in my late 20’s now, so that should tell the reading audience how long many of these BWE pioneers have been working tirelessly at this). I was on a Black entertainment gossip site I used to frequent, and one commenter posted a link to your site. She said something along the lines of: “I don’t agree with everything this sister is saying (about bm), but I think she has a point.” I only even clicked on the link because the person who posted the comment was a regular user. I just scanned through the site and then left, because I had assumed the sister she was referring to (i.e. you, Evia), might have just been chatting random stuff. At home, my sister had asked me whether or not I had clicked on the link, and I told her that I had, but didn’t really read much of it, that I only glanced through. My interest was piqued, so the following day, I decided to visit your site a second time, and thank God I did.

      I remember in those days you used to take comments, and the hypocrisy of the bm whose comments you would use in your posts was just something else. I remember one of the first things I read was one of your articles where a bm who went by the user name of ‘YellowMon’ was disputing your assertions about colourism, saying that it was only natural that bm would (1) have a strong preference for half non-black women, and (2) since you had no problem with wm preferring ww, why should there be a problem with bm, en masse, preferring ww and other women who were not black, (3) that it was wrong for bw of a certain calibre and desireability to date wm because as long as a bm, any bm, wanted them, then they should be with a bm. He was just one of the many bm whose comments you used as a teaching tool so that your readers would know what the reality was with the majority of bm. I remember at the time, wondering how you had the patience to deal with such individuals, but you knew that there were many bw out there who would only listen to the truth if it was put right in front of them. I know you probably don’t remember a lot of this, because you have written so much.

      From that point on, most of the things I did online went from typical teenager stuff, to mostly BWE-centred. So I grew up in my formative years, into womanhood, with a BWE mindset, and that is thanks to women like you and all the other BWE pioneers who did the painstaking work to set the foundations of BWE and build it into what it is today.

      I remember others like focused purpose (who, for a long time, I used to confuse with Khadija, because their comments had a similar writing style, until they both started signing off their comments (I remember Khadijas was something else, till she changed it to ‘Peace, blessings and solidarity‘). I remember Shecodes, and Aimee, and Black Girls Haven, Black Girls Rock etc, Black Women Vote (I think that was Shecodes), Sara, and countless others who no longer blog. There were so many of you who volunteered your time.

      Khadija, I remember how happy I was when you first started Muslim Bushido, as I enjoyed reading your long comments on other peoples blogs. I remember when you left it and started Sojourners Passport. I remember the ‘Flawless‘ post (not sure if it was on MB or SP), and how several commenters who were so receptive to everything else had such a problem with that post. I remember how you encouraged BW to not let anybody steal our crowns.

      I remember all these things. I am saying this because I want those who are reading this, with the intention of trying to rewrite history to think again, because there are many of us who were there at the start or from very early on.

      I was trying to be polite with my reply to the poster ‘Josephine’, because I wasn’t sure of her motives for some of the things she was saying. There were many who contributed to the foundation of BWE, even more who contributed to its growth, why would you want to erase them, their hard work and their contributions?

      • JaliliMaster & ForeverLoyal,

        I’m tickled and flattered to hear that my writing style is similar to Focused Purpose’s style. Her writing is eloquent AND often hilarious—LOL! She was one of my blogging inspirations. 🙂

      • Ahhh, Jalilimaster, this is SO touching!! Thank you! Actually, I just got a note from someone who said that your comments re the impact of our painstaking work on you brought tears to her eyes. I believe you’re speaking for many young bw readers of our sites who aren’t saying anything, but were most likely changed forever by their exposure to the real reality early enough to avoid or develop an immunity to the poison and head in a much more positive direction. I know that many young women of African parentage who are growing up in this country with their clueless African parents are also struggling bigtime because their parents simply cannot grasp their social reality (the same as as AA bw’s) that their daughters must grapple with daily and usually all alone.

        I also want to say that many of the commenters and other readers who supplied me with LOTS of articles and links deserve a LOT of the credit for my contributions to BWE. I brought to BWE lots of the common sense teachings from my mother and grandmother and a host of personal experiences and observations, but the pioneers had to, in essence, clear out the clutter and create a new WORLD, fill in lots of pieces, get rid of flawed/poisonous information and replace it with something uplifting at every turn–complete with new vocab and a new language because as a student of culture and language, I KNOW that words create mental images and those images altogether create each person’s reality.

        And for sure, Khadija and Focused Purpose are two of the best wordsmiths I’ve ever encountered. It’s always been a joy reading them. I’m always left in awe by Khadija’s mastery of her word swords. Whew! But a few years ago, I remember one day frantically looking for Focused Purpose’s new blog articles and was so disappointed when I couldn’t find them. Her words always took me higher.

      • Lol I remember getting into a disagreement with someone where I was actually conflating FocusedPurpose and Khadija. They were telling me that I was mixing up two people and I completely dismissed them and said they were talking rubbish. I was too embarassed later on when I realised I was completely wrong. I didn’t realise other people confused them as well.

        Like you Jalilimaster, I also grew up with BWE and I am so grateful to all of you: Evia and Halima (who were my first introduction to BWE), Khadija, Faith, Focused purpose, Rev. Lisa, Sara, Aimee, Shecodes, Gina, CW whose blogs I found a long time ago. I am also thankful to Goldenah, OLS, and Neecy who I began frequenting in the last few years and have had a lot of impact on me.

        I just want you all to know that your work has had very far reaching influence to black women in different parts of the world! One thing I want to thank the earlier pioneers of BWE for that doesn’t actually get mentioned a lot. They took a lot of the blows for the rest of us. The hate mail, character assassinations, threats etc that used to get thrown their way and yet they still persevered with the BWE message. I remember some years ago, I would be on some black-oriented sites and see complete garbage being written about Evia, Khadija, Halima, and other BWE bloggers and I would do my best to tell the women there the truth. Sometimes just posting links to prove that these were just lies. There were stories going round saying that they were white men pretending to be black women etc. Now it sounds so ridiculous, but that is how scared a lot of negro male internet terrorists and their enabler females (ikes and ikettes as I remember them being referred to….iirc Khadija coined those terms lol) used to get. I want to thank all of you for not succumbing to those idiots’ threats and intimidation. God bless you guys!

        • FoxyCleopatra,

          You’re welcome and thank YOU! 🙂

          You said, “One thing I want to thank the earlier pioneers of BWE for that doesn’t actually get mentioned a lot. They took a lot of the blows for the rest of us. The hate mail, character assassinations, threats etc that used to get thrown their way and yet they still persevered with the BWE message.”

          Again, THANK YOU!

          The early BWE bloggers made it safe for AABW to talk publicly about planning on being an ultra-feminine woman who’s a stay at home wife and mother. Most of the AABW currently saying these things weren’t talking like that online before BWE. They were too scared to talk like that within earshot of other AAs. Because they knew if you said anything like that in most AA online spaces pre-BWE, you’d have to deal with a hurricane of hatred and harassment from cyber-gangs of Good BM™ and Sista Soldier mean girls.

          The early BWE bloggers made it safe for AABW to get online and talk and blog about how some of them have always been attracted to WM. Most AABW weren’t talking like that online before BWE. They were too scared to talk like that within earshot of other AAs. Because they knew if you said anything like that in most AA online spaces pre-BWE, you’d have to deal with a hurricane of hatred and harassment from cyber-gangs of Good BM™ and Sista Soldier mean girls.

          Because of the self-defense actions taken by the early BWE bloggers, many Internet Ike Turners learned the hard way that it can be unwise to cyber-stalk and harass BW. The early BWE bloggers took the heat from the Internet Ike Turners (Gina at What About Our Daughters coined that phrase), pushed back against them (sometimes with the assistance of law enforcement), and made it safe for a lot of other AA women to start talking online.

          You said, “I remember some years ago, I would be on some black-oriented sites and see complete garbage being written about Evia, Khadija, Halima, and other BWE bloggers and I would do my best to tell the women there the truth. Sometimes just posting links to prove that these were just lies. There were stories going round saying that they were white men pretending to be black women etc. Now it sounds so ridiculous, but that is how scared a lot of negro male internet terrorists and their enabler females [. . .] used to get.”

          Oh yes, Bitter Black Male trolls and their BF enablers have been putting out lots of lies about BWE bloggers over the years. Including that nonsense about being WM pretending to be BW. Which is why is was . . . interesting . . . to see Gina at WAOD play into that particular lie out of anger after I questioned and expressed my dissent with some of her views. ‘Nuff said about that particular incident. {smh}

          Let’s see . . . there’s currently a Bitter Black Male troll over at Lipstick Alley whose life mission apparently is to twist, misquote and tell lies on BWE bloggers. He also tries to mischaracterize any points of disagreement between BWE bloggers as being some sort of conflict. It’s almost amusing to watch his efforts at getting it all twisted around, because he hasn’t been able to get much traction with his lies—even over there at LSA. {chuckling}

          Another thing about Lipstick Alley: I take their “tea” with a HUGE grain of salt because I’ve seen how some of the posters over there have totally misquoted and misrepresented me and other BWE bloggers. Another thing I’ve seen them do over there is invent an entire (fictional) life story for me and other BWE bloggers out of thin air. All of which is quite creepy.

          On another note, I’m happy you mentioned some of the other BWE bloggers who were present at the beginning, like Aimee, Shecodes (of Black Women Vote!), and CW. I strongly urge any newcomers to BWE to read through Aimee’s archives. Her posts are full of gems of wisdom. I’ll link to a couple of her posts that for me were among her “greatest hits” and are still current today:

          Reinterpreting Wesley Snipes
          http://blackgirlshaven.blogspot.com/2008/05/reinterpreting-wesley-snipes.html

          I Ain’t Saying She’s A Gold Digger . . .
          http://blackgirlshaven.blogspot.com/2011/06/i-aint-saying-shes-gold-digger.html

        • OLS,

          You said, “I shared your new blog post on the NYGF facebook page, I hope that was alright?”

          Yes it’s okay; and THANK YOU for sharing the post!

          [Since nowadays I have the comments turned off and I only have dialogues when and with whom I actually want to online 🙂 , it’s always okay to share the links to my posts.]

  58. Just popping in to say that I also remember the actual history.
    -I was on Evia’s site back when it still had the hostname suffix on it.
    -I read Racial Realist when Khadija commented regularly there (and was still a black nationalist. As an aside, she was such a strong communicator that I used to believe that if she was still hanging in there, maybe things weren’t so? so? dire in the black community. After she changed her position it was like “Well damn. There goes that”)
    -I was on Halima’s site in the early days as well as Focused Purpose. She did a post announcing the start of Khadija’s first blog
    -I was on Rev Lisa’s site in the early days as well. Her contributions were invaluable.
    -Aimee’s blogging career was brief but made a major contribution.

    I am another one who is not going to stand by and let the greasy lie (lol stole that phrase from Khadija) that Rev Lisa is almost completely responsible for the movement be told without a challenge.

    Nope. Nope. Nope.
    Not today, not ever.

    And I have a couple of Evia’s books with the dates on the posts.
    Anyone interested in the history can order them on Amazon, and I recommend them. I read them as they were posted online, but flipping through the book and going through them again gives a real appreciation for how it was in the beginning.

  59. ForeverLoyal & Evia,

    One of the biggest ironies in the history of BWE is that many of the BWE pioneers and early BWE supporters first became aware of each other at the Black Nationalist blog that you both mentioned. For those who don’t know, it was called Ruminations of a Racial Realist (as ForeverLoyal mentioned). That blog was written by a biracial Black British woman who is the daughter of (yet another) Black male Black Power hypocrite and a WW.

    ForeverLoyal, you said, “-I read Racial Realist when Khadija commented regularly there (and was still a black nationalist. As an aside, she was such a strong communicator that I used to believe that if she was still hanging in there, maybe things weren’t so? so? dire in the black community. After she changed her position it was like “Well damn. There goes that”)”

    {chuckling} Yes, I was still in my Black Nationalist trance when I started commenting there. That Black Nationalist trance had been shaken (but not yet shattered) when I learned about the Dunbar Village Atrocity through Gina’s blogging at What About Our Daughters. The Dunbar Village Crime Against Humanity was my first realization that things were even worse than I realized among the AA collective. I knew the AA collective had problems, serious problems. But at that point I still mistakenly believed that AA men “were in it together” with AA women and children. The “conscious brothers” over at the Racial Realist blog cured me of that delusion!

    What the “Hotep,” BM ankh-wearing hypocrites and their BW Sista Soldier enablers/supporters don’t realize is that AA men’s ongoing failures and DBR behavior is the greatest and the most successful “recruiting sergeant” ever for spreading the BWE message. By their ongoing refusal to protect and provide for BW and children, AA men are burning their bridges with ever-increasing numbers of AA women. Including the BW who previously felt politically obligated to support them—such as former Black Nationalist women such as myself.

    [Recently, it was another watershed moment to see the middle-of-the-road For Harriet blogger do a post explaining why she was NOT going to march for Eric Garner (basically due to BM’s ongoing refusal and failure to reciprocate BW’s support).]

    It was the series of deeply selfish, DBR-type comments from so-called “conscious brothers” at the Ruminations of a Racial Realist blog that ultimately pushed me all the way OUT of Black Nationalist ideology. [And I had previously believed in that ideology since college.]

    Whenever BW commenters mentioned the never-ending list of atrocities being committed against BW and Black girls by BM, these so-called “conscious brothers” would yawn and get right back to whining about WM’ss victimization of BM. The loudest BM voice on that blog was a man who later on married the blogger—they didn’t disclose their connection to each other until after they were married**. Meanwhile, he would challenge other commenters (BW who raised points concerning BW’s interests) to debate on that blog while never disclosing that his personal connection to the blogger. As far as I’m concerned, it’s not particularly ethical or good faith behavior to challenge people to debates in an online setting that (only) you and your blogger girlfriend know is not truly “neutral ground.”

    [**I found out before they disclosed their connection to each other because I stumbled across a photo of them hugged up together in a couples-type of pose at another site.]

    Anyhoo, this “conscious brother” would more or less dismiss any BM-committed atrocity by asserting that ultimately “the WM” was responsible for [feral, violent] Black males’ bad acts due to racism. I finally asked him whether or not he believed in free will.

    The things these so-called “conscious brothers” said on that blog shocked me into the realization that the masses of AA males will NEVER protect and provide for BW and children—AABW are on their own, and need to act accordingly!

    Without them intending to have this effect—

    —the deeply selfish,

    —profoundly irresponsible (marriage & family are the building blocks of any functioning nation. How can you build a nation if you refuse to marry and build families?),

    —DBR-type comments the so-called “conscious brothers” said on the Racial Realist blog snapped me right out of my prior Black Nationalist trance and put me firmly on the road to BWE—LOL!

    • Ah yes. I remember noticing a sudden change in RRR’s tone towards Evia. She used to be reasonable and then one day that was no more. I ultimately concluded her man told her to stop making nice with “the enemy” lol.

      The so-called “conscious brothas” were also perfectly happy to encourage one of the bw commenters there to remain alone–despite having a wm apparently desperately in love with her. Despite her assertion that no halfway decent bm in her surroundings would give her the time of day. Despite the fact that (if memory serves) she was already in her mid-late thirties and the clock was ticking. I still can’t believe she was basically asking them for permission to CONSIDER taking her chance at happiness. Their advice was to move someplace with more bm, or stay alone, secure in the knowledge that she had “stayed true to blackness.” I wonder what ultimately became of her.

      No, I’m sure he doesn’t believe in free will. (un-pc comment alert) Bm who believe they can’t ever get anywhere if “The White Man” doesn’t want them to may as well shut the hell up and bow then.
      Disgusting.

      As you say, the behavior of the bulk of bm is the best advertisement for bwe. To paraphrase the old song:
      They can’t help it
      if they wanted to
      They couldn’t help it
      and if they could
      They can’t help it
      if they wanted to
      They couldn’t help it, no!

      • [My apologies if this ends up as a double post. I had a small problem with my laptop.]

        ForeverLoyal,

        You said, “The so-called “conscious brothas” were also perfectly happy to encourage one of the bw commenters there to remain alone–despite having a wm apparently desperately in love with her. Despite her assertion that no halfway decent bm in her surroundings would give her the time of day. Despite the fact that (if memory serves) she was already in her mid-late thirties and the clock was ticking. I still can’t believe she was basically asking them for permission to CONSIDER taking her chance at happiness. Their advice was to move someplace with more bm, or stay alone, secure in the knowledge that she had “stayed true to blackness.” I wonder what ultimately became of her.”

        Guurl, THAT episode was a watershed moment for me. I distinctly remember how horrified I was when I realized that those “conscious brother” negro males didn’t care—AT ALL—whether or not this “conscious sister” lost out on her chance to have biological children of her own (due to bio clock ticking down). And let me be clear: I’m talking about the grown a$$ males on that blog. There were not teenage boys talking that mess.

        The blogger’s (undercover at that point) boyfriend was the loudest voice arguing in favor of that woman setting herself up to miss out on being married in time to have children of her own. So she could “stay true to Blackness” while the negro males in her environment chased after nonblack women and ignored her.

        I recall that incident in particular because I was outraged by the false equivalent that negro made between his circumstances and that poor woman’s circumstances: He talked about how HE had been patient and had waited until his 40s to find the right BW. Conveniently forgetting that, unlike women, HE would be able to produce children into his senile years. [Which might’ve already arrived, now that I think about it.]

        I hope things worked out for that woman.

        The blogger’s boyfriend wasn’t the only grown-a$$ male at that blog who totally dismissed the realities of that woman’s predicament. I could see teenaged boys and college-aged males being that breezily oblivious to women’s concerns; but not middle-aged males.

        And here’s the kicker: it occurred to me during that discussion that these same negro males would NEVER take that sort of flippant attitude toward a White, Asian or Latina woman’s desire to have marriage and family life. Because AA males—no matter how “Black power” they talk—perceive nonblack women as WOMEN who have legitimate, womanly wants and needs. The same way achieving AA males are happy to provide a stay at home wife lifestyle for nonblack women; but the idea of providing that sort of lifestyle for a BW is unthinkable and somehow inappropriate.

        THAT particular blog discussion went a long way in opening my eyes . . .

        Something else I’d like the reading audience to note is that, as you said, this woman WAS “basically asking them for permission to CONSIDER taking her chance at happiness.” This is one of the differences between now and then.

        Another big difference is that in the beginning days of BWE, AA males were busy telling BW that nonblack men would never have any interest in dating (and certainly not marrying) a BW. AA negro males online stayed busy telling AABW that nonblack men would never marry them. AA males also said that BW who felt AABW should expand their dating and marriage options were delusional. You know, because supposedly “nobody” finds BW attractive.

        Well . . . the so-called “impossible” has been happening all over the place in noticeably larger numbers over the past few years (because AABW have become significantly more open to IR dating). The so-called “impossible” has been happening, and Bitter BM have had to come up with a new slur to use against free, self-actualizing AA women: “bed wench.” Bitter BM weren’t using that “bed wench” slur in the beginning of BWE, because Bitter BM claimed that nonblack men would never marry AABW.

        I think the rapper Eve’s marriage to a British White millionaire named Maximillion Cooper was another watershed event. An event that goes to show that it’s possible for a “typical” looking (not biracial/racially ambiguous-looking) AA woman who has a past to attract and marry one of the world’s most eligible and wealthy nonblack men. For sensible AABW the exodus is ON—LOL!

        • Exactly, Khadija, and I was reminded of this increasing rate of average bw mating and marrying out and all of that naysaying about the “impossibility” of it happening just yesterday at JoAnn Fabrics in New Castle County, DE when I saw two average looking bw (one brown-skinned and one dark-skinned) who were with their average looking wm partners/husbands (both couples were under 35) as they shopped for fabrics in the home decor section of the store.

          This store is located in a large middle class area. These were two separate couples and I saw them within 15 minutes at the store. These women were average size–not slim and not overweight and were dressed neatly but casual–in jeans and a nice top. Neatly arranged short hair style (one wore twists.) Nothing was unusual about these women. Average–just like me. I noticed how they smiled and chatted with their guys. I could tell there was a “relationship.”

        • As soon as Eve broke up with that fool(Stevie J), she took the express bus str8 out of Blackistan.

          She’s been dating mostly upper class White men and Africans for years now. Eve didn’t want that life she was rapping about. For her it was just entertainment.

  60. @Khadija & Forever Loyal

    Yes, in the beginning, the Racial Realist woman was quite friendly towards me. LOL When I look at some of her comments on my site in the beginning, she expressed her reservations about BWIR, but didn’t oppose me. But eventually, she couldn’t bear to face the reality that I continued to present. Apparently, she had “issues” (which she openly talked about on her site) because of her African father’s dislike of his African blood and heritage and his adoration for her white mom’s whiteness and his belief in the superiority of whiteness. But I found it fascinating that the bm commenter on her site who she ended up marrying was also a bm who was very similar to her father. This was quite obvious. She was a bright woman, so I believe that down deep inside, she knew that had she been a dark-skinned woman with coiled hair, he would NEVER have been interested in her.

    And yes, I know I’ve mentioned to some Micomsa members–if not on the Ezine–that the DBRbm have simply been a “gift” for BWE. LOL! I’ve sometimes felt like sending some of those guys a “thank you” card. We told bw what those guys were like, but they would NEVER have believed us or it would have taken decades, for many of them to “GET IT” if not for the DBRs on Youtube.who SHOWED them everything we said and MUCH, MUCH more. I’ve never even watched any of those “spew-hate-at-bw” YT videos because I’ve known from very early the true nature of many AA men, but I’ve read where even the most black nationalist bw or NBABM bw who watch some of those videos are shaken to their core.

  61. I used to visit RRR infrequently, as even at the time, her mindset was quite different from my own. I had seen her mention on more than one occasion, her position on BWIR. At the time I didn’t agree with her, but my approach was, well she is entitled to her opinion. However, when I found out she was biracial, I said bye and never visited her blog again, as I could not reconcile how a woman who was the product of an IRR herself would have any issue with BW dating IR. It was only when Khadija and some other commenters had mentioned it, talking about how dishonest it was to not have disclosed the connection, that I then returned to her site purely out of curiosity to see which of the male commenters it was. By then, I was so deep into BWE that I couldn’t stomach so many of the comments there, and that was, I think, the last time I went on that site.

    • It was only when Khadija and some other commenters had mentioned it, talking about how dishonest it was to not have disclosed the connection,

      The ‘connection’ I was talking about here was that between her and the male commenter she was in a relationship with. I reread my comment and my wording made it seem as if I was referring to her racial make-up when I said that.

  62. Another piece of history. It relates to Evia’s comments that DBRbm used to say that “a white man will never be interested in you.”

    When the movie Something New came out (2006), a bm posted a profanity-laced review that, ironically, showed an understanding both of the power of media and critical insight into AA relationships.

    (I’ve censored it)

    “…now that I’ve voiced all my objections…THIS IS A GREAT F—-G MOVIE!!! I was really happy for the sista. That white boy was taking care of her and making her feel all special and shit. I can’t hate on that. Hell, these n-s out here are f-ed up. Y’all n-s better step y’all game up, because these white boys and these sistas gonna see this movie and the sh-t is gon’ be on, n-s. You think it’s a joke? Okay. Keep taking sistas for granted. N-s, the only thing we’ve EVER had over white boys is the fact that we could depend on black women to never stray and prop us up as their definition of manhood. F–k prison, f–k drugs, f–k all that down-low shit, n-s ain’t hit bottom until sistas realize they ain’t gotta wait on our trifling a—s no more. And that’s from my heart, n-s. Keep bullshitting and watch the new phenomenon unfold for Summer ’06. White boys gonna be banging out sistas and sistas gonna be smiling and happy, because they know they man got good credit. NOPE!!! Good credit.
    Brothas, go see this sh-t and be scared straight. ”

    I’m sure any DBRbm who read this laughed.

    Well, eight years on, and we see what has happened. Not so much laughing anymore.

    • Was this guy being sarcastic or what? It’s not always easy to tell when reading on the internet as opposed to actually hearing it.

    • No, they are definitely NOT laughing anymore. They are “scurred” but here is a news bulletin for them……sensible AABW DO.NOT.CARE!!!

      They have worked their fingers to the bone to reap the whirlwinds.

      It is a new day and we should ALL BE THANKFUL for what the pioneers of BWE have given us, namely, the gift of a totally NEW LIFE with NEW POSSIBILITIES.

      I SALUTE ALL OF YOU!

      P.S. A footnote to those those bloggers new on the scene who “appear by their actions and words” not to show recognition or appreciation for what these early bloggers achieved “SHAME ON YOU!“.

      These ladies made these safe spaces possible and enabled AA BW to find their voice. I remember just how scared many commmenters were to voice their true feelings. We have come a LONG ways since those days, so those of you that this applies to would do well to remember that and for once show appreciation and fellowship to those who came before. (steps down from soapbox…..)

    • “Keep taking sistas for granted. N-s, the only thing we’ve EVER had over white boys is the fact that we could depend on black women to never stray and prop us up as their definition of manhood.”

      EXACTLY! This should be posted on mostly bm websites. Since 2006 our dating and marrying rates should be going through the roof.

      • This reminds me of a story I remember reading as a chile called the little red hen. Something I still keep in mind today

        If, you do all the work no need to share in the reward. It is time to recognize who is friend and who isn’t.

  63. Do any other group of men ask their women to prop them up? Black males know that black women are a resource in all kinds of ways. Black women get tired of propping up GROWN MEN. There is nothing stopping black men to have anything of their own. What about protection in the simple form of
    OPENING THE DOOR.
    BEING KIND,
    WORKING AND HAVING A CAR OR APARTMENT OR HOUSE IN YOUR OWN NAME.
    I was watching tv when they were showing a California police officer was literally beating the living daylights out of this black woman. I mean he was throwing punches like she was a man and it took a Hispanic man who was filming the whole thing. How many times black women and girls have been harassed by black men and boys only for the community to turn a blind eye and a deaf ear? I know that particular incident happened a couple weeks ago, but again how about the basics of protection.
    Also I want to thank Evia, Khadija, One Less Soldier, Halima for taking the time as well as the hits in being in the trenches. These are the true sister soldiers who are doing it for the greater good, and seeing their work being put into action. I do not mean to say sister soldiering in a bad way but you made the path safe for others. I appreciate all the information here and I checked the passive income site and receive a lot of good information. It got me start to think about writing and how to earn income from it. So thank you to everyone for your insight and encouragement.

  64. There was something that was bugging me in my previous comment when I mentioned some things on Evias’ site. It was in relation to that poster ‘Yellowmon’ that I had mentioned. There was something he had said that really bugged me, but I just could not remember what it was, but now I have, so I will include it so that the reading audience can know what they are really dealing with.

    He had said that it wasn’t true that bm didn’t want to date and marry darker or browner (i.e non-mixed, two black parents BW). His defence was that they (or at least, he) would still date them, but they would have to ‘try harder’. Bear in mind, that whenever this individual referred to ‘light-skinned’ women, he exclusively meant mixed-race. So it wasn’t even about skin-tone per se, but about the degree of ‘non-blackness’. In other words, he (and I suspect most bm who date bw), might be willing to date a bw, but she would have to bring far more to the table than a non-bw would. He would be far more willing to put up with the shortcomings of women who are not black than he would with Black women. Ironically, many of these negroes now have that same attitude to mixed-race women, and they too have started to complain that bm now overlook them for women who have no black in them. Some years ago, there was a biracial woman complaining online that it now irritates her whenever she sees BM with a non-bw, even though previously, it never did. I remember that she made a comment that a lot of the bm she saw in these pairings were the dreadlocked, Black-nation types. She admitted that it was hypocritical for her to feel this way as her father was black and her mother white, but that she supported ‘black love’. What she really meant was that she was okay with bm anti-black feelings when it came to dating and relationships, as long as their hatred of anything black only drove them to chase after the most un-black ‘black’ women they could find (because they still included her). The moment they went beyond that, which then excluded her, she decided to run to a site for BW and moan about it.

    On that Black entertainment gossip site I mentioned frequenting in my teens, there was a discussion about skin tone, etc. There was some coloured girl, from whose profile picture, one could see was dark-skinned. She criticised all the women that were complaining about bm treatment of them due to colourism, saying that her boyfriend told her that he prefers light-skinned women, but since he is with her, obviously it doesn’t matter, is not a big issue, and the women there were just exaggerating. It never occurred to her that ultimately, deep down, she wasn’t what her boyfriend wanted or desired, and the moment his real preferred choice came along, she was a goner. Take a look at many of these bm celebrities of years past, that married the light-skinned, half-other women. See how many of them, the moment that they had made enough money to get one, divorced these women to marry a non-bw. An even more recent example is Eddie Murphy. He married a mixed-race, grey eyed woman. At the time, no non-bw of similar ‘looks’ level would have paid him any attention. Now, he exclusively dates ww. Then again, he is into transsexual hookers, so I’m not sure he is the best example to use.

    I am just saying this so that the BW reading this who still think this is all an exaggeration, might actually take a closer look at their lives, and the bm in it (and I’m not just talking about romantic partners). If he is someone that has an anti-black mindset, it will come out eventually. Don’t make the mistake of letting them take up so much of your time, energy, investing in them, etc, with the hopes that when it’s your turn, they would reciprocate, only to find that he (be it a boyfriend, friend, acquaintance, etc) has taken all of your investments and offered them to someone else to reap the fruits!

    • Those men are crazy and I also have seem them posting comments on you tube about white women being less than now. It seems they are on to others now saying white women appear desperate and hungry for their sic loving. LOL. Oh well don’t have time for them and their mess others will figure them out soon enough and it will be over.

  65. The peace walls as Khadija predicted is coming to fruition. The police shootings in Missouri is just the tip of the iceberg. BLACK WOMEN FLEE BLACKISTAN! DO NOT LOOK BACK!

  66. As tragic as the recent killings by police are, they only strengthen my conviction in distancing myself from black males and the “black community” at large. The powers that be ain’t playin’ no mo’, they’ll keep turning up the heat on bm and I want no part of it. Let their “pawgs” and latina, arab, mixed race “dymes” rush to their aide LOL!

  67. Clutch is running a story asking is America for blacks given that another black male has been killed by the cops. So now black men will be having discussions of divesting from America on a blog that claims to be for black women.Meanwhile,I recall black women being shouted down on that very same blog for speaking on the need for black women to consider moving abroad due to the hatred,often resulting in death/being murdered and socially isolated,that they experience. But just now that another black man is dead is it important for us to consider whether or not America is a good place to stay?
    SMH keep heading for the exits ladies.

    I want to personally thank the bloggers who have encouraged black women to travel in search of greener pastures giving some of us a head start.

  68. Re foriegn blacks I don’t believe their hype and bravado at all.Some of my grandparents were foreign blacks. Fact is foreign blacks have been adding to every negative black statistics in America since they’ve been coming over here.The only time these people are separated from us African Americans is when they have accomplished something good. That high ass oow rate in the black community includes some of these foreign blacks and their children. They contribute to the black on black crime rates and drop out rates in places like New York City and in Miami and Ft Lauderdale too.And West Indian men are just as ignorant evil colorstruck and niggerish towards black women as African American men.There are a lot of ignorant West Indian mainstream rappers there always has been.Ever heard of Busta Rhymes anybody?He apparently has committed crimes, I hear he beats and curses women and is allegedly diseased.Don’t get me started on the guys from the Fugees T-RASH
    Don’t even get me started because some of these dysfunctional West Indian identified people are in my own family so I know what I’m talking about.

    *I hear say that the black oow rate also includes the bastard mixed raced kids of white women and some how white women apparently got lumped in to the single black woman never married rate.How did that happen?White women aren’t black because they have bastard kids by black dudes.*

      • Yes OLS, they include the fatherless/oow mixed-race (half-black) children when counting/estimating the number of ‘black’ children born oow, and we (and others) know that the majority of them have Black fathers, as these dbr males are unable to keep their dbr-behaviour away from other races of women as well. That is another reason why there is such a disparity between the number of ‘black’ children born oow, and the number of BW (less than half, about 45% IIRC) having OOW children. People just assume that it is solely down to the BW that have OOW children having multiple OOW births (partly responsible for it), but no one mentions the fact that the children born OOW to bm and non-bw are also included.

        That is another way that BWs image is being further tarnished because of the actions of others, who are willing to use BW as a shield for their own dysfunctional behaviour. This is probably the only time that ww with biracial children are willing to have their offspring considered ‘Black’.

        • ——-Yes OLS, they include the fatherless/oow mixed-race (half-black) children when counting/estimating the number of ‘black’ children born oow, and we (and others) know that the majority of them have Black fathers… That is another reason why there is such a disparity between the number of ‘black’ children born oow, and the number of BW (less than half, about 45% IIRC) having OOW children.——-

          When I first read this comment I thought “that makes perfect sense”. I tell you I’ve read, dissected, and crunched those numbers on the OOW rate many times and it didn’t cross my mind that this would include births to non-black mothers.

          I started typing out a response then I thought… wait a minute… why wouldn’t I have caught that? Why didn’t I catch that?

          I’m a stickler for statistics and data. I love it. I know some people don’t but I don’t believe most errors are in the data, but in how people REPORT the data. Meaning, the words they use to describe the numbers, not the numbers themselves.

          So… this is not true. I went back and looked at the data. The unmarried mother rate is collected from the data used to create birth certificates and it is based on the race of the MOTHER not the race of the CHILD.

          So what the data actually is, is that 72% of black women giving birth (in the reporting year) are unmarried at the time of birth.

          It gets reported as 72% of black CHILDREN are born out of wedlock, which is actually an error in reporting, an error of WORDS, not of data. So, that would be a factually inaccurate statement because it wouldn’t account for the black children born to non-black mothers.

          It would be difficult to ensure there is accurate data on the race of the father, because you don’t have to declare paternity on a birth certificate and as we all know, the mother’s identity is the one that’s undoubtedly confirmed, you’d have to confirm the father CONCLUSIVELY through DNA testing.

          http://205.207.175.93/Vitalstats/TableViewer/tableView.aspx

          So just to reiterate that 72% number refers to the race of the mother. Thus it does not include the black children born to non-black women.

        • I read through the link u posted (it didn’t work, so those interested would have to use google and then search for the table), and there were some pretty depressing stats there. Especially when comparing the unmarried mother rate for bw (72.4%) to that of others – hw (52.8%), ww (29.3%), aw (17.0%), and this was from 2010. One can only imagine what the numbers are now have shown an increasing trend for some years now.

          That is why it annoys me whenever Black folks revert to the usual refrain of “white people do it too”, to explain away and excuse their dysfunctional behaviour. They look at the lifestyles of rich white celebrities, ignoring the fact that there are certain things they can afford to do, and ways they can behave, that average middle-class white folks just don’t emulate. The only ‘positive’ I could take from the tables was that at least, the oow for bw was increasing at a slower rate than for others (there was even an ever so slight decrease between 1994 and 2002).

          As these percentages represent the births to unmarried mothers each year, one can only imagine the percentage of Black folks under the age of, let’s say, 30, who were born oow!

  69. Now is a great time for black women to start working for themselves and growing food.I’m also concerned about water.I’ve been hearing too many stories about contamination and shortages.I think now is a good time for black women to start a stock pile. Right now a lot of people are not paying attention so you can go to the store and buy a lot of water without having to fight over it. There are so many good prepper sites out there that will show you how to properly store and maintain your food.
    Here’s a list http://www.topprepperwebsites.com/

  70. It is absolutely important to have some basic preparedness measures in place. If your town announces a “don’t drink the water” advisory, are you ready to go a few days without it now, or would you be joining the hordes descending on every grocery and big box store within 20 miles to get cases of water?
    Also, I must thank Khadija for mentioning The Survival Podcast years ago. I had already started to grow some of my own food, but Jack is the one that introduced me to permaculture and alternative ways of storing it.
    Now that I have a decent piece of land I am really starting to ramp up.
    If anyone else is into that I’d love a link to your blog!

    • HomesteadGlamourGirl,

      I started gardening this year, using my roof deck as space. I am currently growing 12 heirloom tomato plants, 16 pepper plants, 4 zucchini plants, a ton of leafy greens (e.g. swiss chard, spinach, lettuce), 5 containers of bush bean plants (didn’t count just threw the seeds into the containers), 4 containers of pole beans, and 4 containers of carrots, using Smart Pots.

      I don’t have a blog, but there are some YouTube vloggers that have a lot of invaluable information when it comes to gardening. You are probably aware of them, but I’ll list a few in case some of the readers have thought about gardening, but are not sure where to start:
      -Gary Pilarchik: He has 2 YouTube channels, but I like his videos because they are short and to
      the point. After watching them, you can easily execute the techniques that he
      explains.
      -mphgardener: He has very helpful and informative videos on hydroponic gardening.
      -Learn Organic Gardening at Growing Your Greens: He has a long title, and his videos are just as
      long, but his channel is a good example of how one can grow enough food to
      become self-sufficient using a small plot of land in suburbia.

      Another great free resource is your local, university extension office. Most of them offer free courses on gardening that are taught by master gardeners. Just type “[local university name] extension AND gardening” into Google.

      If you like to read, then these are some books that I found useful:
      -The Complete Vegetable and Herb Gardener: A Guide to Growing Your Garden Organically by Burpee
      -The Vegetable Gardener’s Container Bible by Edward C. Smith
      -The Essential Urban Farmer by Novella Carpenter
      -All New Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew
      -The Complete Guide to Seed Saving by Robert E. Gough and Cheryl Moore-Gough

      Also, if you plan on starting your own garden, please use heirloom seeds, so you can save seeds from your harvest for next year. Here are some seed companies that I have purchased heirloom seeds from:
      -Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Company
      -Ohio Heirloom Seeds
      -Territorial Seed Company
      -Burpee
      -Seed Savers Exchange

      I’ve toyed with the idea of starting a blog about urban gardening especially since the urban garden movement is mostly dominated by non-blacks, and I feel like it’s a message that needs to be spread far and wide. However, with medical school, I haven’t had the time to sit and plan how I would want to set up everything. Maybe during X-mas break, I’ll use some of free time to look into it more seriously.

      Most of the food deserts in black communities would be less of an issue if more black people started gardening. Lettuce, spinach, carrots, beans, and a few other vegetables grow relatively well with minimal fertilizer and attention. They also tend to grow in relatively limited space and produce a lot. Carrots, beans, and spinach also freeze well, so they are easier to preserve. A $2 packet of carrot or lettuce seeds probably has ~500 pods, which is more than a small family needs.

      • Thanks for the resources. I will especially check out the videos as I haven’t spent much time with that medium for gardening. It’d be great to see you start an urban gardening blog.
        It might be easier for you to start writing articles and taking photos now. Just save the drafts and you can go back and edit/publish later. When you’re ready to get started, you could have 10 articles ready to go, that would give you lots of lead time to do a little blogging here and there and still post regularly.

  71. Khadija, you lately mentioned a couple of times (above or on your site) the standard practice of the bulk of AAs BOYCOTTING black AA businesses and not even giving black businesses an afterthought. And we know that the overwhelming most of AAs do NOT spend much with black businesses because if so, there would be quite a few prosperous and quite large black businesses in this country. ALL money can be traced in this country.

    And for those who “claim” that they DO spend money with black businesses or professionals, they must remember that all money can be tracked. For ex., I can prove that I have an AA GP doctor; I have an AA eye doctor, and I have an AA Gyn (1 bm and 2 bw, and yes the bm is married to a bw.–LOL) I’ve been going to them for years and have developed a relationship with them. These medical professionals render high quality care. They have patients of all races and ethnicities, but I initially did check them out BECAUSE they are AAs. Furthermore, I’ve referred other people to them.

    This is the standard operating procedure of all other groups of people. They tend to refer folks to THEIR own.

    You pointed out above how some blacks are instead PROUD to say they shop at the “white” or other non-black stores (Macy’s, Nordstroms, Barney’s, etc.) even though they’re sometimes mistreated or obviously not valued in those places–for ex. followed around, accused of stealing, suspected of not being able to buy certain items, etc. SMH It’s apparent that A LOT of AAs feel NO obligation to spend a certain portion of their purchasing power with other AAs. But they then magically expect for AAs to become prosperous entrepreneurs–just like whites, Koreans, Hispanics whose own folks DEFINITELY patronize their businesses.

    But when the AA person’s business collapses, many AA blacks will then whine that something was wrong with the product or service or “Well, white folks won’t buy from black folks.” They conveniently overlook the fact that THEY nor most other blacks they know buy from black businesses or patronize black professionals (doctors, lawyers, consultants, etc.) EITHER! As you said: they BOYCOTT.

    YET, when some of these SAME AAs (and yes, I’m talking about ANY of you–IF you do this) are the target of a racial incident, they will ALWAYS expect ME or another black person who might be selling a similar product to what they bought at the non-Black person’s store to take their side and support them in one way or another!

    Why should I or any black person support YOU when you didn’t support me or that person when you could have easily done so? Where’s the RECIPROCITY?

    NO-NO-NO! You take yourself over to Macy’s, or Nordstroms or Barney’s or whichever other non-black business you supported and ask them for support or RECIPROCITY.

    We continue to talk about this or that problem that AA women have in this society, and as you said, many AA women do make decisions about how the bulk of AA money is spent. But this is one of the BIGGEST reasons why these problems continue. It’s all wrapped up in the MONEY TRAIL. AA women do NOT use their money effectively.

  72. Evia,

    You said, “We continue to talk about this or that problem that AA women have in this society, and as you said, many AA women do make decisions about how the bulk of AA money is spent. But this is one of the BIGGEST reasons why these problems continue. It’s all wrapped up in the MONEY TRAIL. AA women do NOT use their money effectively.”

    Before I say anything else, let me mention that your latest post (like so many of your posts over the years) is MUST reading.
    http://www.blackfemaleinterracialmarriage.com/2014/08/ucc-news-views-august-18-smarter-bw-continue-to-escape-when-black-women-pose-as-frontline-combative-shemales-they-teach-all-m.html

    I totally agree with what you said there and in the above comment.

    Evia, I salute and THANK YOU for the service you gave ALL AAs as a child pioneer integrationist. YOU and the others who served in that capacity helped make AAs’ modern access to the best of what the U.S. has to offer possible. Unfortunately, the sort of careful planning and preparation that was done in your southern town in Alabama did NOT happen in terms of northern, big city child pioneer integrationists. At least, not from what I could tell by knowing a number of northern, big city child pioneer integrationists, including 2 of my cousins.

    Instead, what happened in the Chicago-area (and in other northern big cities from what I’ve heard from survivors among the child pioneer integrationists in our age group) is that individual AA parents decided to move into previously all-White/overwhelmingly White neighborhoods and suburbs without any sort of preparation or planning for their children. In many cases for ego-centric, showing off reasons. Such as the quest to be recognized as the First Black to live in ______. That whole Special Snowflake mental disorder is NOT a new thing. Many of them didn’t care that their children were suffering and paying the price for their quest to be the First Blacks (and often the Only Blacks) in _________________.

    Which is why off the top of my head I can think of 5 Chicago-area child pioneer integrationists whose minds were destroyed by the experience. Including 2 of my cousins, one of whom is on psychotropic medications after an adolescence, young adulthood, and middle age spent never having established a healthy or stable lifestyle. AAs never talk about (or even admit) that there were large numbers of AA child pioneer integrationist casualties whose minds were destroyed by the experience.

    Frankly, I’m bored with most of AAs’ repetitive problems at this point. Because it’s just that: repetitive. I’ve seen the same ineffective and counterproductive responses given and encouraged over and over during the past 30+ years. After a temporary tantrum of lashing out (only over BM who are killed by WM, never over BW who are killed, or BM who are killed by other BM), the AA slaves eventually get back to Business As Usual.

    The masses of AAs refuse to learn from experience and keep repeating (and in many cases escalating) the errors in thinking and strategy that keep AAs as a permanent underclass. On that note, I recently read an article that mentioned something I hadn’t thought of: AAs have already been a permanent underclass for a long time. This reality was obscured by the practice of not counting AA inmates in various quality-of-life statistics.

    “Pettit, seeing that many government agencies and studies exclude the prison population from their findings, decided to put that population into her calculations and found that it dramatically changed the status of African Americans. This is understandable, considering that half of the 2.3 million U.S. prisoners are black.”
    http://atlantablackstar.com/2012/10/14/new-book-shows-black-decline-since-1980-worsened-under-obama/

    The state of the AA business sector (which has spillover effects throughout the AA collective, such as lack of employment—other folks create businesses to make money and create jobs for their own people, not to provide employment for Blacks) won’t change. It won’t change because the vast majority of AAs refuse to do what Elijah Muhammad told folks to do 49 years ago in 1965:

    —“This requires action and deeds, not words and lip service.

    The following blueprint shows the way:

    1.Recognize the necessity for unity and group operation (activities).
    2.Pool your resources, physically as well as financially.
    3.Stop wanton criticisms of everything that is black-owned and black-operated.
    4.Keep in mind — jealousy destroys from within.
    5.Observe the operations of the white man. He is successful. He makes no excuses for his failures. He works hard in a collective manner. You do the same.

    If there are six or eight Muslims with knowledge and experience of the grocery business — pool your knowledge, open a grocery store — and you work collectively and harmoniously, Allah will bless you with success.

    If there are those with knowledge of dressmaking, merchandising, trades, maintenance — pool such knowledge. Do not be ashamed to seek guidance and instructions from the brother or sister who has more experience, education and training than you have had. Accept his or her assistance.

    The white man spends his money with his own kind, which is natural. You, too, must do this. Help to make jobs for your own kind.”—

    http://www.finalcall.com/columns/hem/blueprint.html

    It’s just that simple. But the vast majority of AAs want to do anything EXCEPT these sensible, success-producing steps. All of the early BWE bloggers talked about these various issues. Including the warning you gave in your latest post about the price tag that the manly AA mammy mules and Sista Soldiers who are manning the front lines in Ferguson, Missouri are creating for AA women in general: These mannish she-male combatants are training men in general to treat BW like . . . men . . .

    Halima talked about this around 4.5 years ago.
    http://dateawhiteguy.blogspot.com/2010/03/cooperating-with-system-set-against-you.html

    I talked about this around 4.5 years ago.
    http://sojournerspassport.com/the-art-of-being-feminine/

    Which is why those AA women who are normal women—and not manly she-male combatants—MUST separate themselves and their image from these deranged mammy mules and Sista Soldiers. Pronto! And there were readers who had the nerve to get offended by these various posts. Well, the proof is in the pudding with what’s going on right now. Early BWE/Common Sense bloggers could see some destructive trends taking root that too many among the readership couldn’t see. Now, y’all can see it for yourselves splashed across the media.

    Those readers who took heed and took action are reaping the benefits of that choice. Those readers who are not doing so are reaping the penalties of that choice. Such is the nature of life.

  73. Pingback: White Women STFU about About Telling Black Women how to feel….Feminism AGAIN =__= | Black Girl With An Attitude

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