Black Women in Fandoms 106: The Trick Is To Make You Think We’re In This Together, When Really They’re Dancing On Your Bloodied Corpse

 

 

It’s been a while since I wrote a post about on this topic; three years actually. And if you haven’t read my posts on Black Women in the Media I would advise you to do that now. (If you are new I would especially recommend this so you’ll have some sort of frame of reference.)

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/04/21/black-women-fandoms-101-a-series/

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/

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/

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/05/30/entertainment-for-the-progressively-neutral-black-woman-bwif-105/

I know I said, after the debacle that was the response to the posts below, that I was done writing about black women in the media. But in light of recent events I’ve decided to dig up the corpse of these posts and build myself a zombie.

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/10/08/a-is-for-anger-and-why-i-write-what-i-write/

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/11/06/since-im-already-batting-a-thousand-i-may-as-well-go-there/

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/11/25/girl-bye-episode-i/

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/10/18/houston-we-have-a-problem-happily-adrift-in-our-own-demise-and-other-little-sticky-wickets-2/

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/11/02/asdfghjkl-o_o-derp/

Although I’ve severely limited what I’ve been watching lately I do keep up with the news enough to know what’s been going on recently. But in case you missed it here’s a quick rundown of the insanity I’ve seen concerning black women in the media.

  • Masses of deluded and mentally ill black women came out to support “Straight out of Compton” and give it a billion dollar opening.
  • Zoe Saldana was cast in a biopic for Nina Simone in which someone decided it would be a good idea to spray paint her dark brown and give her a fake nose.
  • Yet *another* television about slaves has been produced. (I guess we’ve digressed that far)
  • Blacks completely foamed at the mouth when they realized they were overlooked again for the Oscars.
  • Black women decided to flock to another television show with what will surely turn out to be a place hold black woman’s face on the show “Outsiders”. (I guess we’re still trying kicking that)
  • Beyoncé decided to speak for all black women when she #mammied herself at the Super Bowl for the Black Penises
  • Coon…Ahem.. I mean Kevin Hart continues to land roles using Black women’s resources.
  • Rachel Dolezel, Black Woman Impersonator continues escape persecution for using
  • Melissa Harris Perry got kicked to the curb on MSNBC.
  • Abbie Mills was killed off Sleepy Hollow. *shock and gasp!*

After watching debacle after debacle, the most important thing I’ve noticed in all of the discourse surrounding these events is that people who have been *directly* benefiting from the continued demise of black women would like us to believe that we’re in some bad sequel to High School Musical and we’re really “All in this Together”.

I’ve spoken before about the dangers of not being able to identify what an ally is.

https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2014/07/22/1040/

Unfortunately, too many black women are still confused.  So I’ll repeat myself.  It is impossible to TRULY ally with someone who is directly benefiting from YOUR misfortune.

And just in case you were skimming this post I’ll say it twice.

It is IMPOSSIBLE to be TRUE allies with people who are, not only directly benefitting from your misfortune, but are actively INVESTING it.

With that said, I want black women to get something clear: There are few mistakes in Hollywood. Almost everything is deliberate. The people who have made hundreds of billions of dollars (and that’s just sometimes on ONE movie) didn’t just “accidentally” screw you into the ground.

No.

That crap is D-E-L-I-B-E-R-A-T-E.

There are no mistakes.

Zoe Saldana didn’t just casually wander onto the set for the Nina Simone Biopic and then the director just felt sorry for her and let her stay.

These Networks didn’t reluctantly cast stereotypical black women on their shows because there just weren’t any non-stereotypical ones.

That umpteenth show about NEGROS relishing in SLAVERY didn’t just “accidently” get greenlit.

The writers didn’t “accidentally” cast a black woman as “Lead” only to have her as a place HOLD until they brought in light skinned/ white women as her replacement.

The NETWORKS are NOT unware of the offensive things their black male actors have vomited all over social media.

The producers and “showrunners” have FULL authority to make certain actresses’ lives miserable until they want to quit.  And they ARE capable of it.

The networks are fully aware that when they paint certain black face wearing, conniving women as sympathetic to the masses they are doing a colossal disservice to black women.

The networks and executives didn’t “accidently” manage to use black female faces to attract “perpetually surprised” black women to their television shows and then “spontaneously” decide to dump them.

[Please read this recent post by Muslim Bushido in which she talks about previous posts on this exact topic http://muslimbushido.blogspot.com/2016/04/perpetually-surprised.html ]

The networks and executives didn’t simply hire biracial actress to REPLACE unambiguous black women because they were SO talented they couldn’t be passed up.

The academy wasn’t actually unaware that they nominated NO blacks for their awards. (Despite all the people having tantrums on twitter. Lol)

THERE ARE NO MISTAKES.

You are being played, hoodwinked, deceived, duped, tricked, conned.

Somehow in the biggest con of all time, black women have actually fell for the idea that groups of people who’ve managed to hang onto their privileges for CENTURIES just couldn’t quite figure out how to treat black women nicely; that they have just no idea how to not cast stereotypical black women. That they just couldn’t write actual lines for black women as HUMAN BEINGS.

Come on ya’ll. you can’t be that naïve. But just in case you are, I’ll jump further down the rabbit hole in an attempt to pull you out with a very obvious example from the movie Shit Outta Compton:

The group NWA made their multi-million dollar, decades longs careers on the backs of black women. These BLACK MEN while complaining about racism and police brutality simultaneously abused black women (physically and verbally) and happily produced NUMEROUS vile songs about KILLING black women.

Yes, you read that correctly.

And when, after decades of lacking any REMORSE that they’d gained their fortunes on Black women’s misfortunes, suddenly these same men decided to “apologize” for abuse that they willfully perpetuated.

Wake Up, ladies.

This did not happen in a vacuum. This did not happen because “Dr.” Dre suddenly felt “sorry” for what he’d done. (LOL). He didn’t have any epiphanies. He needed to sell tickets. And of course, because NOTHING is an accident, he knew black women would accept a two-bit apology.  This was planned, finagled, and arranged by people who MAKE THEIR LIVINGS perfecting the right thing to say at the right time.

Every, “Emotion”, every “regret”; every “sadness” has been carefully crafted by people behind a curtain. And you’d think that this would go without saying but this movie somehow had a massive opening day and subsequent theater run supported by the same woman whose image and names are in the gutter because of said group. And the kick is that Black Women were salivating to support it.

But remember, the trick is to make you think that we’re all in this together when really they’ve strung up your corpse in time square and used it as a piñata.

Bu if you want an example from the other side of the coin. Let’s look at the show “Sleepy Hollow.”  Black women were ensnared in that trap from the day the show was announced. As I predicted THREE YEARS AGO the show pulled a complete bait and switch. But they took it a step further. Not only did they bait and switch the audience, they managed to kill the character off completely. And from what I’ve heard they didn’t even do her justice.

And yet when all was said and done, (as I expected) white women somehow managed to turn the issue of black women being used and abused into a way to push their agenda.

http://jezebel.com/lots-of-female-television-characters-were-killed-off-la-1770374116

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/fien-print/critics-notebook-why-did-female-882659?utm_source= &utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=THR%20Live%20Feed%20Alerts_now_2016-04-11%2014:48:42_Jfrosch&utm_term=hollywoodreporter_livefeed

http://www.themarysue.com/tv-female-characters-killed-off-in-one-week/

http://mic.com/articles/140590/8-major-female-characters-died-on-tv-last-week#.muKOfDIe5

If you weren’t daring enough to click on the links, I’ll help you out. These broads managed to turn the phenomenon of black women getting baited and switched into a larger issue about “Women” (read white).

And while I couldn’t give to whits about the comings and goings of angry white women, I want black women to be aware of something. White women are NOT innocent victims in the demise of black women in the media.

Here are a few fun facts.

The director the Nina Simone debacle is actually a white woman.

The directors and showrunners of The Vampire diaries the show that mammied their black female character for seven seasons are white women.

The network executive who approved the decision to kill Carter’s character on Person of Interest is, you guessed it, a white women.

But somehow these women would have you believe with all the Liz Lemon’s, Unbreakable Kimmy’s, and Leslie Knopes (and that’s only naming a few) that we’re all in this together.

Sure we are.

If I haven’t said this before it bears repeating over and over again.  The problem with assuming everyone is your ally is that you’re assuming that NOBODY is working against you.  This is a cycle I’ve noticed over and over throughout the years.

Certain groups can do a number of heinous things to black women. Black women become enraged by said acts. Said group feigns surprise and stupidity and remorse before skillfully using lines like “but the white man is doing this or that to all of us” or “Those white men have an issues portraying all women” or, “Let’s not be divisive. The larger issue is those white men,” And miraculously black women fall for the buzzwords. Black women enter a fugue like state ready to nurse said groups to their bosoms instead of holding them accountable for the continued mistreatment.

And I won’t even get into the fact that these same black women who were just sharted on by the executives at Fox still haven’t learned to DO FOR SELF and create their own media. In some demented turn of events there are actually people talking about more upcoming shows with sock puppet black female leads; yet again providing these networks with free publicity.

I couldn’t make this crap up if I wanted to, ladies.

Stop it. Wake Up.

Before I leave, I’d like to ask you a couple of questions. If we’re all in this together would there be masses of blacks deciding to boycott the Oscars because ONE washed up black actress lost out on a nomination. (Please look up how boycotting the Oscars came about because Will Smith was snubbed and Jada wanted to support her husband.)

When black women show their asses in the same way as the Rachel Dolezels will she be written off as anything more than a ratchet hoe?

Have any of these groups you’re desperate to cling to ever sacrificed for YOU?

I think we all know the answer to that.

And while the truth hurts, it will also set you free.

Until next time,

Stay Neutral.

  1. I somehow missed myplaceinthesun’s annual Christmas challenge to support black women owned business.

http://myplaceinthesun.typepad.com/my_place_in_the_sun/2015/01/real-bwe-supporters-holiday-buying-challenge-results.html

So I’m issuing it from now until the end of May.  If anyone knows any black women business for likeminded black women, please link them below. And please post what you purchased, if anything, in the comments.

OLS.

The Dance Is Over and You Don’t Owe Them A Thing: BWiF 104

 

The Dance is Over….

And I hate to break it to you when black women got dressed up oh so pretty. But really…. The dance is over.  If you don’t know what  I’m talking about, who I ‘m talking to, I’m talking to the black women who have decided to “wait it out” concerning fair and even media portrayals that don’t screw black women over or let them “feel good” about themselves in the outcome.

Yes… l hate to break it to you but the Dance Is over.   What I mean is, the time when everyone sat down to fight for their seats at the table is over, the dye has been cast and at this moment in time it’s highly unlikely that the band is going to continue playing.

The punch is gone and everyone is heading towards the exits.

It’s a concept that I don’t think many black women understand as they’ve been trained to go down with the ship like it’s loyal captain.  For a lot of black women, I continually see them haunting forums, brigading twitters, lining up on Facebook fan pages to complain to the writers/producers/networks/fans about the mistreatment of black women overall in the media.  These black women believe that there is some fight left, some accomplishments to be gained by perpetually wasting their time writing article after article after article about how they wish black women would be given a fair chance in the media and how yet again they are being portrayed heavy handedly, while they hope against hope that things will change if they can just get other people to care.

*Note Please do not even mention that I just wrote a BWiF 101 post about characterizations and identifications. I did NOT do so because I simply wanted to complain about unjust media, I did it to point out characterizations that many black women don’t even seem to be aware exist and do not understand the greater implications and I did it to give the reason why black women should not support the shows they are watching.*

This isn’t going to happen.  The band has in fact finished their last set and the balloons are being deflated as we speak. When it was time to “carve up” who was going to get any good portrayal in the media( and  we know who these went to See recent minority casting on Downtown Abbey and note what gender the black character will be ) groups other than ourselves. Black women were simply left off the ballot when it was time to vote for prom court.

But why are you telling me this onelesssoldier?

Well I’m telling you all of this so you can stop wasting your time holding out hope. I’m doing this so you can pack up and take your money/time/ resources/ portrayals elsewhere so you can stop being treated as the court jester of television while you support your own mass degradation. Basically I’ll be the designated driver that makes sure you’ll get home safely.

As the designated driver I will point out that there is largely no use in trying to appeal to these forums to try and get a slice of the pie for black women in the “mainstream” media.  We’ve seen from my last post that the people who are in charge of black women’s portrayals are fully aware of what they are doing and in fact enjoy doing it.

There is no mistake. It wasn’t an accident that you are being portrayed in the media the way you are. They are fully aware of what is going on. They are Nurse Ratched aren’t they And they have an agenda.

Unfortunately as I mentioned in my other two posts Troll Face and Nurse Ratched have played a good game in either making black women believe everything is changing or that when they get screwed it’s for their own good.

Furthermore as the designated driver I want to point out that these people who are messing with your image are also doing so to assert their privilege over you in the only way that they can.

Case in point Julie Plec writer of the vampire diaries. You see Ms. Plec doesn’t care about giving a black woman a good role because that would mean that she doesn’t get to keep the privilege that she has by making the black girl be the single girl while the other women are well loved and given true roles and portrayed as desirable.

Heck if you want me to really break it down for you, I have heard ( and I can’t confirm this as I have never read the vampire diaries books or seen the show)  but I can say that from what I understand from other people BONNIE was the character in the books who had a large role while Caroline was actually the one with the smaller role. From what I understand they basically, when the show came out, gave Caroline (white) the story lines and sidelined Bonnie.

My point is that there is nothing to debate.  There is nothing to try and negotiate it’s all going according to plan and that plan was never to include you in the first place.

In fact you’re simply playing into their system where you plead for acceptance and hope that one day they’ll admit that they like you, they truly like you.

This will not happen as they need you to play into their system because they know you will support them without walking away.  Basically they know they can do whatever they want to you and you won’t do a damn thing. In fact they know you’ll beg for more whilst they cash in or your desperation in the meantime before they decide to pull the plug.

And where does that leave black women truly?

It leaves you in living out a scene like the one in the classic movie “Carrie”. Similar to Carrie many delusional black women show up to the party truly thinking that *this time is going to be it for black women* “we’re moving on up” . Those same tricks (that I mentioned in 102 and 103) are played and not only do black women not see what’s going on but by the time black women *actually realize* that  they’ve been played they end up like this:

 

Indeed,  it takes pigs blood and lives lost (usually their own) before black women come to the*realization* that it was all just an elaborate hoax.

Another case in point:

The show the vampire diaries made the decision to kill of the character Bonnie. Of course this comes as such a *shock* to the people who spent their time investing in a character  that didn’t go anywhere. Of course these people have not yet decided to get out. Oh no! They believe that the character “won’t stay dead” and that truly Julie Plec has good plans for them. They think it will get better.

Sad to say that after five years these women haven’t truly learned their lesson.

 

…. Black Women don’t owe them A DAMN thing.

I don’t think many black women are clear on this concept either. Many black women don’t even realize that they can*opt out* of the dance if they realize what is going on and desire NOT to have pigs blood poured on their head  after being tricked into thinking they’ll be voted queen in a rigged election.

As the designated driver at this little shindig I’ll also be the one to point out this:

Black women do not owe anything.

They do not owe their TIME, MONEY, TWEETS “LIKES”, TIME (YES I USED THIS AGAIN),HOPE, TRUST, BELIEF, FAITH, PROMOTIONS, DVD ORDERS, TUMBLR POSTS, REBLOGS, MOVIE TICKETS, FOLLOWS,   RETEWEETS, ET AL.

You are not required to “sit it out.” Or “have faith”. You are not required to accept bullshit.

There are some women who may feel guilty that they are not supporting something because they may have been told that their reasons for not supporting it are  “petty” or played off as “not a race issue.” They may feel guilty because they want to get the hell out of dodge the moment they feel like something doesn’t sit well.

I’m here to tell you YOU DON’T HAVE TO FEEL GUILTY FOR PUTTING YOURSELF FIRST. YOU ARE NOT REQURED TO PIMP YOURSELF FOR OTHER PEOPLE’S PROGRESS IN WHICH YOU WILL NEVER BENEFIT.

I felt the need to caps lock all of that because it’s imperative that black women hear me.

Your tab has been settled. You owe nothing to the bartender.

Other people seem to think this is some sort of sexist date where they feel they bought you dinner and now you have to “put out” (aka support all the bullshit that they spew out) *See the supporters of shows like SATC or the boneheaded blacks guilting black women into watching RedTails.*

NO.

If you feel something is wonky about the situation that they are creating and don’t want to support it, that is your RIGHT.

You do not have to wait until the time that’s always a day away and hope that you’re going to be finally granted anything. If it feels wrong, if you feel like you’re getting played. Trust your gut.

Don’t let the nurse Ratched and Troll Faces play you.

Case in point:  Recently (February) I started watching the show Person of Interest. I had never seen it before and make it a point to never watch a show when it premieres until I see where it’s going. It’s actually a good thing that I didn’t get invested in the show because they have announced now that actress Sarah Shahi will be joining the show as a regular.

Of course the delusiods and concern trolls are fawning about the fact that Shahi is a “woman of color” and how cool it is that the two “leads” are both “women of color”  (Ironic that she is half Iranian and half Hispanic and both of these groups can be included in the “Caucasian category”)  Yes these people would have me believe (like nurse Ratched) that I’m really getting something from the deal.

(Lol. And I just wrote about this. I honestly think I’m prescient because I can’t make this crap up.)

I quickly realized this for the bull it was. And I am grateful that I didn’t order any dvd’s before I discerned what would happen.  Because I can’t be sure if this new addition will mean less screen time for Henson who is already a supporting cast member.

Do I feel guilty? No. I am the customer. I don’t have to support tripe that doesn’t present me in the best light or marginalizes me. I’m not required to do that just like I’m not required to wait out season three in the hopes that the black woman character doesn’t get screwed( and really what are the odds of that?). But they if they want to make money they are required to present material I like.

My point is that black women do not owe the people who are producing these shows/ movies/ music/ plays/ etc. their resources while they decide how they want to play god with the representation of black women.

No.

If you don’t believe me ask yourself this. Would anyone watch anything that they didn’t feel they came out on top in? Would they waste their money. We all know the answer to that is a big NO. Do not let them change the standards for black women.

You can choose not to support something.

As I end this post I want black women to remember one phrase:

I don’t KNOW you, I don’t OWE you.

What I mean by this phrase is that  you don’t owe these people, they are not your friends. They are not your family they have done nothing to further your lives and vice versa you wouldn’t know these people from Adam if you walked past them on the street.

This is a business transaction at the most. They attempt to sell a product and if you don’t like it you are free to take your business elsewhere and invest in something that can give you a return on your money.

If you’re not getting a profit then it is not worth supporting. To otherwise  and you are simply wasting the few resources you have.

And black women simply can not afford that.

Until Next Time,

Stay Neutral.

Ps. This is part of  a series

Previous post: Ah Benevolance: The trick is to make you think it’s for your own good when really you wind up as empty handed as before. BWiF 103

Next post:   Entertainment for the Progressively Neutral Black Woman: BWiF 105

Ah Benevolance! : The Trick Is to Make You Think It’s For Your Own Good When Really You Wind Up As Empty Handed As Before- BWiF 103

I’ve written before that the biggest way to trick black women and get them to support anything was to make them believe that it is somehow benefiting them.

Indeed this is true. When I look at black women who continually support things that have given them no proof that it will ever come back to them I always notice that the independent variable in all of this, is that these women truly and utterly believe, have truly been indoctrinated by very clever foxes, that they are going to benefit.

This is especially true when I look at black women who support the media in all of its f-ery. Whenever the masses of black women realize they’ve been screwed the ultimate response is ‘calm down, I’m doing this for you. You’ll come out on top in the end.”

That is, when black women try and escape the mental hospital that they’ve been involuntarily placed in, they’re immediately subdued by Nurse Ratched, with medications and a strait jacket.

For the ones that really put up a fight they’re lobotomized, old school style, until their mind is a vegetable and they can’t tell which way from the other.

Case in point, apparently some fans of the show tweeted Julie Plec ( the show runner/writer  for the vampire diaries ) a while back about the character to Bonnie being with one of the vampires.

*I should note that I do not watch the show The vampire Diaries, (though I have seen clips of the show) but as a blogger  for black women I make it my business to know what is going on in the world of black women so, I follow many things.

Anywhoo, apparently some fans tweeted Ms. Plec about putting Bonnie with the character (Kol?) or any character romantically.

And this is her, Julie Plec’s response.   I took the liberty (thanks to an Oh NO You Didn’t Article On the matter) posting the entire pic of the twitter exchange below

You see my darlings, this is a classic case of  Nurse Ratched realizing that the patient that she’s been secretly controlling is now getting unruly and temperamental. The black women who she’s been keeping  on a leash for the past four? Years  are suddenly wondering why the character that is supposed to look like them  is single and alone and ( as the fans have described) for all intents and purposes the slave to the other characters on that only use her.

Her response is typical, why up the dosage!

She quickly begins this by of course showing how benevolent she is. Why she’s doing black women everywhere a favor by not giving Bonnie a storyline/ love interest.  Bonnie is strong (notice she throws that grenade at black women.)  and beautiful. So beautiful that nobody equals her and so she should settle for being alone. She’s really complimenting us black women who don’t notice and are too ungrateful for her kindness.

Well I never!

Watch as the conversation progresses and the fans ask her about it, she ups the dosage even further.  She says, “no… with respect.. just no”

See Julie Plec respects the audience. She’s wants us to know that she hears us but she’s truly keeping the “integrity” of bonnie by making her lonely and alone.

But I’m not buying it. I realize this attempt for what it is. She is quickly trying to put angry fans back into the straightjacket before they start a riot and erupt from the halls.

Yes, a la One Flew Over the Cookoos Nest style she has to tamp down on those disturbing ideas black women have to, oh I don’t know, be portrayed as beautiful and desirable.

But this time it isn’t working because I guess some fans came right out and wondered if it was because of her race that the character has been screwed over multiple times in the fandom.  Basically they tried to come right out and say they were being drugged. They suddenly became cognizant.

So what happened? The brute force had to come right out and assisted her in giving black women a lobotomy.

Her henchman, ahem one of the actors, Matt Davis tweeted this.

See the straightjacket and drugs didn’t work. Now they have to have extreme measures. This attempt should probably go into a Black Women Shaming 102 post because that’s what it is.

Now he has to shame the black women who care that the characters that look like them are getting effed continually. (Though he doesn’t note that everyone wants characters that look like them and are represented well otherwise feminists would be happy seeing white men on screen and black men would be happy seeing only white men on screen seeing as they share features.)

In this case the lobotomy is the guilt and shame black women are now facing for “bringing in the race card”

He points out that Jewish people aren’t upset by the character? (Kat Graham is half Jewish)

The point of this is that,  after black women didn’t accept the benevolence “card”  the objective  is to now subdue them BY ANY MEANS NECESSARY. Namely shame. (because black women respond very well to this)

That way they’re such a vegetable after the lobotomy that they don’t know which way is up. They start to doubt. They will (hopefully) start to ask.  “Is this really racist/sexist? Am I just crazy? Am I “playing the race card?” Who knows?  Now the masses of black women are disoriented.

Well played. Matt Davis, Well played.

But I guess the lobotomy didn’t take on me, because I am fully aware of what is going on.  Because this situations plays out so many times in so many situations.

Yes, the f-ery of this situation is enough to make one’s head spin, but let’s keep it moving.

   

Let’s talk about what I like to call The Iron Man Factor.

Or, “The Blockbuster Factor”

In the Iron Man Factor, I’ve noticed that there have now been many attempts in recent years to give  minorities roles in Super Hero Flicks Such as Iron Man, Avengers , Thor, Etc.

Great new right? You’re probably thinking that this new trend will allow black women to get their own roles, right?

Well, you’d be wrong.

In fact as par for the course, as per usual, All the Women Are White And All the Black Are Men.

While the Don Cheadle’s, Gweyneth Paltrow’s Scartlett Johanson’s and Samuel L. Jackson, have been allowed to expand their use in these new blockbuster films. If you notice, black women have remained largely invisible.

Why am I bringing this up?

Well recently  I went to see the movie ( my family wanted me to) and when talking up the movie one family member mentioned that the movie showed an expanded role for women (ie Pepper Potts saving Tony. I looked blankly at that pronouncement,   simply because I didn’t see how that was relevant to black women, this family member told me it was important because women never get to be the one to save anyone.

So what am I getting at? Well the point is that for the black women part of convincing them, that their “allies” are really benevolent is to convince them that when “they win we all win” theory.

Black women are supposed to think that because Gwyneth Paltrow has a vagina and Samuel L Jackson has brown skin, his success his millions, their roles, their money, their positive images, are really going to help me.

That when Don Cheadle is cast as the best friend. I can jump for joy.

Part of Benevolence is to convince black women that it’s good for me to be in rags while they’ve got riches.

We all know this is not true, but the point of this trick is to get black women to shut up because we secretly believe that they are successful so they can ‘open doors’ for me.

Oh happy days!

The trick is to let black women happily accept it because they think “We’re all in this Together.”

But Like I said in a previous post. This isn’t High School Musical, and the trickle-down theory really ends up bottle-necked with black women having parched throats.

Meanwhile with the Benevolent smoke and mirrors game they end up being the true beneficiaries.

Again, very clever, but I’m not buying it. Because I know that in the end of the trick the image of black women in fandoms never actually changes.

But I will give points for trying.

I have to advise though as I end this post for black women to be on hyper alert as they make buying decisions. Especially that have to do with the media. And ask yourself this.

Are they really in it for me? Or am I just being fed a line so they can benefit?

Until Next Time..

OLS.

Ps. This Post Is Part of a series.

Next Post:  The Dance Is Over, And You Don’t Owe A Thing : BWiF 104

Previous post:  The Trick Is To MakeYou Think That Everything Has Changed When Really You Haven’t Moved an Inch.

* As always the picture doesn’t belong to me.

The Trick Is To Make You Think That Everything Has Changed, When Really You Haven’t Moved An Inch: BWiF 102

A  reader asked me to take a look at the movie Gone With the Wind and Compare it to a Madea movie. While I simply don’t have the mental toughness to deal with the ENTIRE Gone With the Wind Movie, I was able to catch some clips of it in on Youtube (specifically the scenes with Mammy)

It also helps that I  was thinking of doing a post like this for my BWiF Series and this fits right in.

So thank You Oekmma  for the suggestion.

Let’s get started. ….

 

Progress. Important to any group of people who want change for the better, it’s that signal that you’ve actually gone somewhere and everyone wants that.

Except for one group of people the idea of progress, of change for the better seems to be  all sizzle and no steak. Because if you look closely, if you take off the blinders, remove yourself from the rhetoric that people keep shooting towards black women, things  have stayed  EXACTLY. THE. SAME. Concerning the images of black women in the media.

When you look at images of black women in movies like Gone With the Wind you probably say to yourself, people would have you believe, “That’s bad but black women have definitely come a loooooong way in the media.”  Other delusional people want you to catch their disease as they convince you that you live now a post racial world.

But let’s take a closer look.

Mammy from Gone With the Wind is a * classic* caricature of black women in the media. She is literally everything that mainstream media loves to present black women as, save for the Jezebel stereotype, though I’m sure that if you looked closely you could probably find a hint of that too. She is the classic asexual, subservient, sassy, overweight, angry,  black woman that many black women have been portrayed as for as long as we can all remember. Hell she is probably the birth of that caricature in modern television.

But while some people like to put her out of their mind, I’m not so quick to forget the influence this character still has on almost all black women on television today.

But why it important to realize this?

Is the question that I’m sure that you want to know.

It is important to realize that black women are being tricked. That black women are really looking into an elaborate hoax with smoke and mirrors.

The point of the media, especially for black women is to reinforce stereotypes without having to change at all. That is, despite popular belief the television is a tool that is used to promote whatever agenda is popular or money making at the time.

For black women that agenda is most of the times unattractive, embarrassing , racist/sexist and everything else in between.

Duh, you’re probably saying to yourself, you were smart enough to realize that. Of course you know that the media has an agenda that harms black women.

But usually I only notice black women jump at things that are extremely overt ( though considering some  black women  that isn’t strictly true) But the thing that also stands  is that the new name of the game is that now the media likes to pretend  that black women are getting something, that progress is being made.

For example look at any character regarding black women in the media, and yes I mean ANY. You may think that the character is “fleshed out” you may think that the circumstances of the character have changed but if you look closely they are exactly the same.

I look at the movie, Precious. So many people  ( black women included) lauded it because it showed the abuse of black women.   And while on the surface that *may* have been true ( although that is debatable) if you look closely the Mammy stereotype born of  Gone With The Wind still haunts that movie.

On a psychological level it subconsciously reinforces the same thing. That black women are overweight, greasy, unintelligent, angry, abusive( in the case of the mother)  abuse victims, women that can’t fully enjoy life because they are too busy trying to escape their lot.

Further what should be the characters moment of truth when she leaves her mother doesn’t actually show much triumph when you think about it.

It actually creates more questions than it solves.

In the end of the movie we see her walking away from her mother and down the street.

Yet what happens after. Yes she gets her GED. But big whoop. Here is child with severe mental issues who has been raped ( some of it incestuously),abused, treated like crap, and has two children.

But the movie shows no flash forward to the years later showing her successful. Does it?

They don’t show her getting therapy. They don’t show her mother in prison. They don’t show her children getting a good education. They don’t show her in college, with a high paying job. Nothing.

Now you may say, well they  “alluded” to her getting her GED.

And yet we don’t know what will happen after that and that’s the point.

The point of the media is to show a bit of upliftment  so as the masses of movie goers don’t get angry while still keeping the reinforcement.

Whatever happens to Mammy… ahem.. Precious off screen is just that off screen. Because her triumphs are not actually necessary to show. That wasn’t the intent. The intent was to show black women in the worst way possible.

*Similar to the Pavlov’s dog experiment in psychology the point wasn’t to give dogs food more like to condition them to respond to a bell. Similar the point of the movies is not to uplift but to get black women to go to movies meanwhile conditioning them to believe the imagery and respond accordingly in real life.  Psychologically speaking some might consider this classic conditioning. Sooner or later black women won’t even need the food ( aka the tiny bit of happiness in the movie) to shell out their money.

Like Mammy in Gone With the Wind we never know what her true hopes and dreams are. hell we don’t even know her name. We never see her except in the context of the Scarlett O Hara(?) character. We are allowed to see Precious learn to read ( which isn’t a great feat nowadays because that won’t be the only thing to get you a job or out  of the ghetto)

We don’t get to see her in a foster family or really anything during the movie besides her suffering reinforcing the stereotype that black women live dark, dank, dreary lives that nobody can ever rescue them from.

It was just enough to keep people from getting up in their seats without giving any true happiness. meanwhile conditioning and taking money.

Target hit media, target hit.

If you want another example of this look at the movie Beasts of the Southern Wild.  That movie also did what it intended to do. Reinforcing the stereotype of black women and girls, as rough and tough black women who in the end didn’t actually get any help and who suffer abuse while living in poverty. Meanwhile walking around with their hair disheveled (and note that they made sure to show her natural hair in a messy disheveled state. And this isn’t a knock on natural hair because I am natural myself) but they made sure to show her as much of a mess as possible.

Also not that in this movie they made sure that they cut off the movie before they actually showed her getting help similar to precious.  But they had plenty of time to show her say she was  “da man” and flexing her non existent muscles.

I also think it was telling that this book was written with a boy (white) in it. ( If I’m not mistaken) and notice how they switched her to a black girl but had her still behaving like one.

Reinforcing the non delicate, masculine ultimately mammy stereotype of the strong black female. And yes I use the word female instead of “Girl’ “lady” “Woman” etc because the media makes sure to distance themselves from that.

No this movie spent just enough time showing her in squalor (for some reason people find poverty inspring and not sad)  without showing her truly get help. Ie not live in a dump etc.   Who truly have to help themselves and keep a stiff upper lip.

The mammy stereotype from GWTW  was just reinforced in a more adorable package but it was still there none the less.

Touché.

Of course black women don’t realize they’re pretty much buying into the same stereotypes birthed in Gone with the Wind. The pretty packaging, the rhetoric the push  to believe that this is reality provides a strong defense.

Look at movies Like Madea.

Madea is pretty much, almost 100% the same exact version of Mammy from GWTW.

In fact if you want to compare side by side, both are unattractive, angry, sassy,  and overly concerned with the lives of others.

And similar to Mammy once you finish watching any Madea movie you know virtually nothing about Madea herself. What her life was like. What she likes / dislikes ( besides disrespect because of course all black women are concerned with disrespect)  what makes her tick.

Because that isn’t the point of the movie that  is ironically named after her. The point of the movie like Mammy in GWTW   is to show black women being the most, masculine unattractive version of themselves  without changing the status quo. So they can easily shut the movie off before they ever get to her character or ask why she acts the way she does.

But as I was saying the promotions/ the rhetoric is a strong. The “force” is with PR campaigns like this.  They have plenty of excuses,  they claim that Mammy was historically correct in GWTW, just like they claim that Black women like Madea actually exist *somewhere* though I’ve never seen any grandmother  drive their car into a fast food joint.

The claim that this is groundbreaking, that black women are receiving roles, though ironically a MAN gets to portray black WOMEN as HE sees fit.

I guess Mammy was groundbreaking because the actress won the first Oscar for black women. And it’s telling that it was a role that pretty much ruined  the image of black women then and now. And its also telling that for all the groundbreaking she had to sit a separate table at the Oscars because she was black.

So there’s that.

They also add a bit of humor so you mistakenly walk away feeling good without realizing you got effed. Or they throw in some ambiguous scene that they can say see they “prevailed in the end” though if you look closely they really don’t.

The protection is that these movies are providing something new, providing a cornucopia of different roles for black women from “all walks of life.” And really they still have the same function.

Really that’s the point.

Similar to a virus or a disease, it’s function is to get into the immune system shut down the white blood cells that would attack it by posing as one of them ( while ruining black women from the inside out)

Of course black women don’t realize that they’re being poisoned, hell they probably think they’re in greater shape than ever.

And for the black women who have a better immune system and call it out, well no one is going to listen,  because nobody can see what’s wrong.

I was recently on a certain feminist website ( I won’t link and I won’t name but if you can guess good for you)

And there was an interview by the woman who plays the stereotypical Donna on Parks and Recreation.

Funnily enough the commenters  talked about how much they loved her and wanted her to be their BFF. (yes someone really said that)

Because nothing says BFF like a sassy black woman.

Black women take this sort of perception with open arms.

They seem to think that their  it is progress if audiences  like the black female character. They think they’re breaking grounds. That black women are being given actual roles and not only being accepted because they are a comfortable mammy figure that white women can identify with.

Think I’m lying I want to point out a comment on a YouTube clip of GWTW

 It shows they have a relationship of love and understanding. Scarlett respects her love for Mammy and Mammy loves Scarlett because she reminds her of Scarlet´s mother beauty that none of the other sisters had. Scarlett is 16 and she is spoiled and very modern for that time when girls were supposed to be just porcelain vases to admire. Scarlett wants to save her land because of what her father always said to her. Its a nice movie and very complex if u read the book there is more to it than this.

See this movie likes to pretend that there is some sort of complex character behind Mammy, that her relationship with Scarlett is Good and Nice and fleshed out. That black women are winning because of it. Meanwhile in actuality this character reinforces two things. The popular idea of black women as mammy’s themselves, the idea that black women’s existence is wrapped up in that of white women and it does it all while safely keeping black women in the same box.

What I could also LOL at is that this commenter blindly talks about “women being porcelain vases” but I guess he doesn’t consider Mammy a woman, because she is not a porcelain vase nor is she someone that anyone could or would want to  admire. The disease has truly taken hold because he doesn’t even consider  Mammy a woman who is nothing like, lives nothing like  the woman he is claiming do.

The disease is taking firm hold. Not only do black women think it’s harmless, but people think it portrays healthy love for black women. Meanwhile in real life its firmly taken hold as white women want now want their very own Donna to be the Mammy to their Scarlett.

We’re definitely in trouble.

Indeed this silent but deadly disease has honestly tricked black women and pulled the wool over our eyes.

Not only is it giving black women  false promises and lies of change but black women are having their lives ruined while shelling out millions of dollars of year.

And by the time black women figure this out it may just be too late for an antidote

But this author is immune.

And she’s warning you all to take a good look at what you support and ask yourself i f what you’re watching is truly ground breaking is it just a Mammy in a better costume.

Until Next Time,

Stay Neutral

Ps.  This was post was part of a series.

Previous post in series: Black Women in Fandoms 101: Identification & Characterization

Next Post in Series : Ah Benevolence :  The Trick Is To Make You Think It’s For Your Own Good,  All The While Screwing You OVER.  BWiF 103

Note, the picture does not belong to me.

Black Women in Fandoms: 101 : Identification & Characterization (a series)

Welcome To Black Women Fandoms 101. IDENTIFICATION  If you’ve ever taken a course with me Like Black Women Shaming 101, you know that this post will be devoted to pointing out all of the fuckery of the treatment of black women characters in fandoms. Why is this important? Not simply a means of venting Black Women Fandoms 101 is designed to point out the very obvious very hidden ways that black women characters are marginalized so black women can be aware that they are watching their own subjugation.

So let’s open our books and take a look at all the different ways that black women play a role/ characters that black women play in fandoms. You may have heard of some of these or not. The point of this series is really more like a “refresher course” of black women in the media. And No this isn’t just a rant post I will get to the point of all of this in the next two posts.

Note: If you have not already noticed from the pictures above I will be using black women who are characters on popular television series’ today. Also note that Other people have pointed many of these phenomenon’s out I just put a name some that needed them.

Let’s get started we have a lot of material to cover

1.       The Mammy:

This character will go down in infamy as the most common and most  annoyingly overused characterization of black women in American Media. The mammy is the character that everyone knows, and everybody looks through. The mammy is dedicated to helping the white characters (usually white women women) achieve their hopes and dreams or is constantly dethroned ( also think Mercedes on Glee who just isn’t  as good enough as Rachel). The mammy is usually overweight (think Mercedes from Glee)  and she is usually happy that way. Unlike her white counterparts the Mammy is not only happy to be the unattractive sidekick to the white character, she is completely “defanged”. That is, like a rattle snake that has lost its venom the mammy has no sexuality. ( or given unsuccessful relationships like the one with Sam)Unlike the potent beauty and sexuality of her white counterpart the black Mammy best friend simply exists. There is no past, no present, no future. (though there may be some illusion to an unsuccessful past relationship that might explain her frigidness) No hope for relationships outside of the one sided exclusively beneficial ones. She is only around to serve and protect. To the cost and detriment of her own self.

2.        The Mother:

Similar to the mammy although she is not as self sacrificing and does think about herself.  She is very motherly to the people around her and while she may not be de- sexualized her sexuality is always muted in comparison to their white counterparts. For example Shirley on Community at first is a divorced housewife who later gets back together with her cheating, philandering ex husband when she becomes pregnant by him.  While The Mother may be sexual she is not sexual with any of the main characters. Yes she had a one night stand( drunken)   with a (lesser) character  ( who is characterized as awful and unappealing). And she was comically hit on in the beginning seasons by ( Chevy Chases character) but nobody likes either.  Her sexuality is off screen as to not be offensive. And the love she gets is relegated to second best. And certainly not with the leads.

And as the writers of Community have had the character of Shirley note on the show in a sort of Meta way, she is frequently assumed to be the “mother ” (and insulting called “mother hen” by one of the women of the group though through flashbacks  (and said often throughout the show) it is later shown she is the exact age of Jeff Winger (Joel McHale’s Character) And not much older than one of the other women in the group. Though also noted through the show he has slept with all of the women but him.

The mother may have some character development but most likely it will have to do with her family like on Community.

3.        The Antithesis:

This character is the stark contrast or exact opposite of the white female character/ heroine. Where the white female character is probably skinny beautiful, smart courageous or any other positive characterization, The Antithesis black female character will be the exact opposite. For Example, think True Blood. Tara Thorton acts as the Antithesis  of the white female character Sookie Stackhouse. If Sookie is loved by everyone, Tara is generally overlooked.  If Sookie is portrayed as courageous Tara is a whining pestiferous weakling frequently victimized and has no agency.  If Sookie is optimistic and hopeful about love and life, Tara is the one that knows it “aint gone get no better.”  This is also seen in looks/ appearance too. While Sookie Stackhouse is blonde and beautiful and loved by many vampires and humans alike because of her (“light”) Tara is the dark skinned (their portrayal not mine)  dark souled, just generally DARK  character who simply sucks the life and love out of a room (no matter how well her reasons are like RAPE).

4.       The “Ëscape Goat”:  

This character is simply there for one purpose and one purpose only: They are designed to be so hideous, so unlikable, so nasty,  that the general audience hates them. This black female character usually comes along with a bad attitude (for no apparent reason).  They are unattractive, overweight, loud, Larry, and generally a hassle to other characters. (Pick a show and  any black female character can fit this role.)  Generally this is so because this character is there to distract the audience from the less than desirable qualities of the main white cast of characters (a lot of times the white female character).  Recently I read some comments about how the character Bonnie on the Vampire Diaries was treated deplorably .(I do not watch the show but I have seen clips and have seen what they are talking about) and one commenter said this

(no subject) – pistol_eyes – Expand

nicenicegirl 13th-Apr-2012 09:57 pm (UTC)

that’s my issue with her tbh. i liked her in season 1, and then i couldn’t put my finger on all of a sudden why i stopped liking her, and then one day i figured out it was because i don’t think we’re supposed to. we’re barely given any info on her and they only call her in for help when they need a witch. it’s awful how they treat her.

 

As this smart viewer brought to my attention. The viewers are not supposed  to like this character. Bonnie Bennet is not going to get any screen time because Bonnie Bennett is there to serve her purpose (mammy) while holding all of the so called characteristics that nobody likes( although ironically many times if you look closely characters like this actually have many admirable qualities) . Thus distracting the audience from the same lesser crappy qualities of the rest of the cast of characters.

If anyone has ever seen the show Community there is an episode in season (1?) In which Shirley (played by Yvette Nicole Brown) threatens to leave the group if they don’t kick Pierce (Chevy Chases’ character out.)The result? They kick him out but they all soon notice that they soon they start turning on each other as they realize that since Pierce was the most obnoxious. He almost “balanced” the group because they were all focused on how much they hated him and his bad flaws instead of everyone else’s bad traits. Soon after they try and find which member will be the new “escape goat” (Troys’words)   When that fails they are desperate to get Pierce back in the group to balance everything out again.  Thus order is returned.  Or if this example doesn’t suit your fancy think Dan on Gossip Girl frequently he was the target of derision of the Upper East Siders though most of them were more morally corrupt than him.

This is the role of the black female ‘escape goat”. She is not there to be developed, loved, liked, cared about. Her past will not be looked at or examined closely. She is simply there as a diversion to make the rest of the cast more adhesive and cohesive.

 5.       The Resilient One: AKA The Strong Woman or The Sufferer

The tagline “She suffers, so your favorite character won’t have to” should be the tagline of this characterization . She is there to suffer and that is it. She is the Annie of the group except the sufferer will never meet her Daddy Warbucks or her Knight in Shining Armor.Tara from She is there to take the burden of the suffering.  Tara from True Blood Is a good example. Tara frequently has nobody in her life to care about her. Her mother disowned her and was mean before she left her life. She has no father to anyone’s knowledge. She barely has any friends and the people she loves frequently die and are never replaced with other stronger bonds with other people others unlike Sookie.

Further, the sufferer provides the real gritty story lines without having to defile the white female characters by giving the stories to them. Think how Tara was raped for a lot of Season Three on True Blood and she never received any help afterwards. ( And please don’t be obtuse about Jason being raped also on the show. Because his character is actually given insight and thoughts whereas Tara is NOT for the majority of the time unless it is to characterize her worse)   .

But of course you could NEVER show  Sookie or Arlene or Jessica or Pam being raped. NO the Sufferer is the mule the woman who can be the whipping post for the show provide “real” moments while leaving characters like Sookie and Elena virtually unharmed.  Or think how in the Walking Dead comic book  ( I’ve never read)  Michonne the black woman was the women who was raped brutally.

The resilient woman is there to take the hideous, heinous, crimes get up without a care, without protection or help or concern and brush it off. ( or deal with it off screen as someone pointed out about bonnie on vampire diaries or how Tara left town on True Blood)

Indeed she may be admired (or Not because * ironically* most people don’t like these characters, for being “Strong”)but she is certainly not LOVED.

6.       Sassy Black:   AKA the Comedy Act ( But the punch line is she’s actually not funny)

Sassy should be her first name and Black should be her last because that’s all you need to here to sum up her entire life.  She is the loud, larry, (fat) unattractive, neck bobbing, angry bitter, jealous and everything in between. Usually this character is also the comedy act. Think Sherri Sheperd or whendy Williams.   Sassy black is known for her comedic timing and jokes. She snaps her fingers with impeccable timing as she tells her jokes about “dem white peeples”   but she’s generally just….Unappealing. Think the black woman from (Donna from parks and recreation)

The comedy act is there to reaffirm audiences that black women are indeed in their place as the lovable buffoons that they’ve  always been. While threatening in manner she is no threat to white female hierarchy because she’s too busy shucking and jiving.

Sassy Black, As others have pointed out, Also may be hyper sexual. ( Sassy Black has that mythical black women self confidence)  Though we never see the men ( as someone pointed out about Donna Parks and Rec). She frequently also takes on the Jezebel stereotype of black women to a T.

Sassy Black is a woman who would be described as someone who ‘doesn’t take shit” or “tells it like it is”. Sassy Black rolls her eyes, express frustration at all the white people around her and express  her indignation with the best of em.  Sassy black has no hope for the future and is satisfied with herself even though there is MUCH to be desired.

But of course audiences “love” this character the most.  Many times Sassy Black Is the enforcer/ protector of her white female counterparts who also gives advice/ lives vicariously through the white character.

* Angry Black

Note: Angry Black  is  under the same umbrella of Sassy Black. And we all know about her.) She is angry for no apparent reason and she may or may not tell jokes. But one thing is for certain she is a force to be reckoned with regardless.

Similar to the maid, ( Florence?) on The Jefferson’s she is disheveled and distressed and loves to engage in angry (and sometimes witty)  repartee with the rest of the characters. She is the basic of any good sitcom or show. She’s pissed at the world and the world steps out of her way. I don’t even have to list a show. She is  in plenty.  Though if you *need* on think HELEN on the show Drake and Josh who is ironically also played by Yvette Nicole Brown.

Angry black woman can also be overweight. And Angry Black Woman can also be physically or verbally abusive ( especially showing jealousy to white female characters or just anger at white male characters).  She also loves to harangue respectable black men. Think Wendy Williams character in the movie “Think Like a Man”

,,,  << Kelly Big Time Rush
and above this is Lanie from Castle

7. The Best Friend:   

The best friend is actually likable. She has the most potential to be the fresh faced girl next door character close to the white female character. Except with The Best Friend while she is likable, relatable, etc. she is never given the chance or is simply not delved into like Kelly on Big Time Rush or Lanie on Castle. Usually like the character Bonnie on Vampire Diaries another of these characterizations gets in the way and she transforms into nothing but a shell.   She does not date ( and certainly not the lead ( though the character Lanie is given another minor character as a love interest though its mostly off screen and shown through the mans point of view) ( Kelly on Big Time Rush is also never seen dating anyone they don’t even allude to her age either) She is a threat in many fandoms because if she is actually given the good story lines  she will be liked. Most importantly she is a threat to the other female characters. As someone pointed out about Bonnie on the VD her character while interesting is never given any roles because if she was she would become more interesting than paper doll ( no agency) Elena or Caroline. She has the potential to disrupt (take focus off) the story by her own charms so she MUST BE DESTROYED.  The Best Friend aka The Girl Next Door doesn’t last long.

She can’t.

8. Rough, Tough And Tumble:

She is supposed to be the female embodiment of feminism and empowerment. She is the strong, (but nowhere near as strong as The Resilient and she may never know  true suffering like getting raped though she has had her normal share of pain) She is simply the black women that “kicks but” takes name, is a good friend, all while dressing sensibly. She is usually of average looks (or her looks are played down for audiences sake) and she is generally never given a love interest ( because of course she’s too strong for that.)  She is the character white female audiences may salivate over because she is strong (which they can enjoy for the sake of principles) but they also get there cake and frosting because they generally enjoy the softer (white) characters. Think of black female captain on the show Castle who makes people call her “SIR”( for respect and has the nickname ” Iron Gates” ) . Or Regina Kings character on Southland or even Jocelyn Carter on Person of interest.  (I mention Person of Interest not even because of what the writers have done but because of the audiences blatant need to shove her into this role despite all evidence of her  NOT being Rough, Tough and Tumble. Carter is very vulnerable but that is a BIG problem for audience members)

Usually Rough, Tough And Tumble, “gives as good as she gets’ with men ( a feminist’s wet dream)  and is generally just seen as “one of the guys” ( or course she doesn’t get in the way of white  love interests on the show.)

And of course similar to mammy she doesn’t want to either.

Rough, Tough, Tumble provides a touch of realism  (she wears sensible clothes, strong, tough, un feminine)  without having to make black women real. ( she has no love and certainly not the lead usually they might be off the screen love interest as not to upset “progressive audiences”)

9.

Brown Face: 

Brown face may not be a negative portrayal she is just… there. She may very well have lines, she may very well be a supporting cast member but she was only cast for one reason. To fill the quota to keep the angry black beasts  from  RIOTING Hollywood. She is a placation, a place marker for black women audiences. Someone on other posts has pointed out Astrid on Fringe. She is there to provide color ( and she may or may not be a full black actress though it doesn’t matter its for look and her race is generally never mentioned )but she is NOT there to do anything more than assist.

[NO PICTURE AVAILABLE]

10.    Invisible Girl:  

Invisible girl is just that….. Invisible.  You would think it would be impossible to have a black female characterization about a character that isn’t there but actually INVISIBLE is  one of the biggest most used characterizations. Invisible Black Girl, simply never SHOWS UP, though her existence is implied. Think the erasure of black women in Red Tails who were neither shown in  thought or flashback.  As many viewers pointed out and the love story was then replaced with a black man and a white woman. And this isn’t even targeting the interracial aspect. The point is that Invisible black girl is simply not around when things are happening though her existence is alluded to or implied. They may be married but there will be no pictures nothing, only a ring if that. Think how the first black male Captain on Castle had a wife that only showed up at his funeral and the episode dealing with the aftermath of his death. Then she faded into the background.  Invisible Black Girl is always someone’s, cousin, sister, mother, but her existence is simply null outside of that. And you often wonder how other black male characters exist for all of the thought given to them.  But if Invisible Girl shows up like, she is mostly a plot device to further another character.  Some people may quote the backlash of (Broomhilda from Django Unchained whose story was never shown. I’ve never seen it so I am not sure) Or think about Gus on the show Psyche. Gus is a character whom even with flashbacks we don’t know who his family is who is mother is, if he has siblings etc. It is almost as if he was born unto himself.

…..

Whew, thanks for sitting through this flash course on Black Women Fandoms, This was just a brief introduction/ flash course.  I hope that this provided an identification number  for these characters to black women will see them coming a mile away. If you are still interested in learning more this class will continue with these next posts in this series

Black Women in Fandoms : 102

Until Next Time,

Stay Neutral.

Not Special Thanks to these posts who brought many things to my attention ( or refined what I was already thinking) so I was able to make an amalgamation of the trends that were being put in front of us.

http://www.racialicious.com/2012/04/10/why-the-vampire-diaries-treatment-of-bonnie-bennett-and-her-fans-bites/

http://www.tvovermind.com/commentary/vampire-diaries-black-witches-42633

http://xalexiel.blogspot.com/2012/02/vampire-diaries-and-race.html

http://www.ankhesen-mie.net/2012/02/poc-of-vampire-diaries-bonnie-bennett.html

http://irresistible-revolution.tumblr.com/post/34927148809/the-mammification-of-bonnie-bennett-or-why-we-bonnie

What does a stick of butter, a weeping willow, and a sneaker have to do with Feminism?

 

What does  a stick of butter, a weeping willow, and a sneaker have to do with Feminism?

 

I guess the answer to the question would be absolutely nothing. And yet in the feminist world both black and white there is a penchant or past time really of taking things/ ideas that have absolutely nothing to with feminism or empowering women and manipulating and painting over them until feminists hear whatever they want.  Usually it involves the personal preference of a few faux feminists who want to justify the stupidity of their personal choices so they invent reasons why their choice is cute/good/ feminist/ empowering and then go even further by encouraging that our a lauding it.

I’m here to tell black women: Do not buy into the hype.

What am I talking about? I’ll tell you.

I can’t seem to get away from the recent obsess….ahem fascination with Beyonce, and  I especially seem to notice how on black run sites like Clutch, Madame Noire, etc etc there is always an article about how black women ought to somehow look up to this woman.  But this isn’t about my dislike of Beyonce, no, this is about responders to an article about the responses to complainers about her half time show.

Apparently people were upset because she wasn’t  wearing any clothes.

Of course the feminist obfuscators as per usual manipulated the conversation until they got the desired results. She’s just a performer, she dresses that way to perform easier, she’s empowering, people are uncomfortable with black sexuality, blah blah blah.

And yet these same ‘feminist’ can’t point out the bigger picture, I don’t think I’ve ever recalled any male performer half naked and gyrating on stage. In fact  while Beyonce has built her career on the likes of her naked ass  I don’t see many men doing that.

Justin Timberlake (who is coming out with a new album) isn’t coming out with a fireman stripper outfit. In fact when he is performing he came out in….a suit and tie! Gavin Degraw isn’t naked, hell even Adam Levine isn’t half naked and gyrating when he performs. He is fully clothed.

Better yet all of these people are usually playing an instrument! Meanwhile I keep seeing these women who can do nothing but have light shows and dance around naked.

Second of all I have to ask this. If beyonce is trying to be empowering to women, why do women need to see her naked? Why do I need to see her gyrate? I already have everything beyonce has I’m not impressed.  Obviously she’s trying to draw in  a crowd that’s not women.

This is another reason why I had to walk away from the feminist community because crap like this is actually being touted as “pro” woman.

Being told that “women run the world”(in the words of beyonce) while dancing Naked is NoT  empowering. No matter how many definitions you twist it. Does. Not. Change. Facts.

Black women really need to be careful of people trying to sell them a feminist package. A lot of these people are just corporations trying to sell their message at any cost and they are able to get into bed with “women’s”websites like Jezebel. (I’ve often wondered who backs jezebel because no matter what they claim I will NEVER believe they are for women)

Black women also need to remember, that despite what Beyonce’s or( other women like her) claim in their music/ interviews, women are NOT running the world if they have to be naked (or as close as you can get) while doing it.

How black women became feminism’s Mammy… and Womanism’s wet nurse.

This post was inspired by a comment that my reader had  to this post. https://notyourgirlfriday.wordpress.com/2013/01/10/so-black-women-hate-and-are-jealous-of-white-women-and-are-too-bitter-to-support-feminism/

I didn’t post the entire comment but I did post this part of it. Blackfemaleculture writes:

The BW who wrote the post you are quoting from is a mammy and an idiot. And not just for supporting those who don’t give a rat’s crap about her or anyone who shares her ethnicity, but because she is willing to throw other BW under the bus to curry favor with such people. If I were going to swear my allegiance to a group of people, it would be one that actually has my back. I don’t need fair weather friends / alliances. None of us d

The biggest thing that stands out to me was when she used the word mammy. I honestly don’t think I could have used a better phrase than this. When I think about it, that is exactly the type of relationship that black women have with feminism. They are they Mammy’s. Further I have to call out “womanism” because to me it is a shell of something that had potential to be good for black women. In reality black women became Womanism’s wet nurse.

Let’s talk about how black women became feminism’s Mammy.

Dependable – Like a good mammy, and although feminists like to pretend black women are oh so unsupportive when really  black woman have always been the mammy to the movement and were dependable.  I think some people like to forget how during the 70’s there were black women who supported feminism.  Admittedly it wasn’t all black women but think about this, if a significant number of black women hadn’t supported feminism, black male /female relationships wouldn’t  where they are today.  Supposedly from what black men say (although I do consider it bullshit) black men wouldn’t hate black women if they hadn’t defected to the “dark side” and supported the “I don’t need a man”meme that feminism supposedly was/is.  So from at least one part of the population there is some*albeit ridiculous* acknowledgement that black women were involved in the movement. (although some bm try to say that wanting equal pay and reproductive rights is “defecting” but w/e)

Nevertheless black women were dependable and joined the movement. Classic signs of a good mammy.

 

Let’s look at another way that black women became the Mammy of feminism.

They do the dirty work. When it’s time for fat acceptance it’s time to fly in black women who are previously relegated to sidelines/sidekick, (While white feminists get to play desirable roles. (I’ve written about this before)  Or if there is any character that needs to “break molds” black women classically get the dirty work of being othered ( and given false acceptance for being progressive) meanwhile other races of women get to stay in the safe area and play roles that while may “ pressure them to live up to a standard” but still ends up in the long run. In the end black women have paved the way for other races to get feminist benefits that in the end black women, because of racism won’t get to enjoy. If you have seen the movie Pitch Perfect they had a black, overweight, lesbian (butch dressing woman) which if you are a butch lesbian I’m not indicting you because that’s not the point. This isn’t an indictment on sexual orientation. This is to point out a trend. In the movie it was made a joke that they thought she was a man only to find out she wasn’t. (which considering black women’s history and the jokes for women who aren’t butch lesbians and the propensity for the media to make black women asexual or treat them like men in wigs I’m not laughing) In this world all black lesbians are butch not femmes. Or if they’re not a lesbian they are completely asexual.  But it’s clear that when there are lesbians they are always the masculine (never feminine) woman that craves gentle white women (pretty much what happened in the movie). Because black women are just like every other MAN who just *loves* white female flesh.  What I want to know is this: If being a butch lesbian is something to aspire to, why are black women always the ones assigned that role?  Why aren’t there an equal number of supposedly desirable rolls for black women?  Why are the black women always assigned the masculine role.  AND NOTHING ELSE? Further why aren’t the majority of white women ever cast in this role? Why do we always see ( and are pushed to accept ) roles for black women like Mercedes on Glee, who doesn’t care about how overweight she is meanwhile white feminists get to women  like Rachel on Glee to look at. Why is the only representation of black women lesbian, masculine, fat, or unattractive, or all of the above? Why aren’t they ever desirable femme lesbians, or desirable straight black women?

I’ll give you the answer like a good mammy these women are supposed to do the hard work ( ie be characters that are “ groundbreaking”  in a time where there is no acceptance ) they are letting white (and other women of color) pretend  that they are accepting ( because like they claim “ there’s nothing wrong with the being (fillin in the blank)) while they get the high horse of being desirable. Just like a good ol’ mammy they do the work while Scarlett O Hara gets to have fun.

No reciprocity- Even worse than the other is there is no return. Like a good mammy black women never receive anything in return. They are “treated like family” just like many white people thought of their mammy’s in the old days except not only are black women (like the old mammy’s ) still treated like dirt with racism,  there is no time for black women to get anything back after their hard work. Instead like a mammy black women are treated as if they have no wants needs or desires, and if it is acknowledged it is well know that white feminist (just like the people with mammies in the old days) aren’t going to defer their dreams, wants, hopes, and desires, to a simple black mammy. Black women feminists are supposed to do/ support…. they are NOT supposed to ask, think, feel, experience pain etc.

Treated like family… but not really. People claimed to love their Mammy’s.  They claimed they were family.  Similar to the way non black feminists like to say the care about ALL women. But with a Mammy that obviously isn’t true because they were still thought of as inferior and you simply don’t treat a mammy like a non living, being if you truly care about someone. Same as if you claim to care about black women in feminism you simply DON’T relegate them to the sidelines while they do what you say and then use them like a tool when you’re ready. You also don’t ignore real problems they may have ( like racism) you would be concerned and try to help.

Only there to listen- Like any good mammy black women became great listeners in the feminist movement and just like a mammy there is never any return. We must listen to the rants and raves of white feminists about the white male patriarchy and how much the men (that they still marry/ mate/ birth mind you) are just oh so terrible. Meanwhile when black women complain they are told to hush or completely ignored. Really…. could you imagine if in Gone With the Wind the mammy (or any mammy who is supposed to be like family) took a seat and started complaining about her problems? Why I don’t think Scarlet O Hara character would know (or care) what to do. Instead black women would are looked at as if they are insane when they complain about sexist black men or told that they probably have less body issues because they don’t have to live up to standards (forgetting that the standards are racist and in their favor), or told that black men can’t be sexist because of racism, or simply shrugged at. As the mammy of feminism black women are there to listen while white women complain about white men (or whatever while male related problem of the month) until they go back and suck them dry (forgetting that they are benefitting greatly from such terrible men.) People only care about them because it is one sided, like a true fairweather friend they can have a living springboard but they don’t have to do anything. But imagine if the springboard started talking back or diminish their problems. Why… look out!

On to Womanism.

How black women became “womanisms” wet nurse…

I’ve always had a problem with Womanism. Simply because of the fact that it is basically is white feminism in a different name. Except in a way it’s kinda worse. Because now instead of black women trying focus solely on themselves, in an effort to be “inclusive” unlike that evil feminism.  Black women have to include everyone.  This includes black men (lol) gay white/black men (who despite what you think still have privilege  because they are white and male or just a male) , white lesbians (who still have privilege because they’re white) “Women of color”  who have shown time and time again that a lot of them can be more racist than white people, Men of color (who again still have male privilege),people who are able bodied, transgendered people, etc.

And I’m sure that these are worthy causes. Except that black women can’t handle it all. Nobody can. I sure don’t see white feminists attempting such a feat or black male activists for that matter. Because it’s simply NOT possible. Instead this movement becomes one big campaign to validate everyone. Except when the campaign is helping people who already have privilege, because of that privilege black women are again forgotten. Just like a wet nurse people line up to suck at the teat of black women’s movement where they get validation for all of the racist/ sexist / whatever bullshit that happens in their lives (without having to have the balls of calling out whoever(although usually it ALWAYS come back to Ye olde white man) instead of doing it themselves. Those same Asian/ white/ Latina/ women who may have treated you like dirt under feminism with their privilege can now come to womanism. Those same sexist black/ Asian/latino men who cat called and harassed you on the street are now protected… by you. Those same racist/sexist gay white men (it is possible) and the same (racist) white lesbians ( you’d be surprise at what I’ve seen…again it is possible) can come straight over to womanism and VOMIT ALL OVER YOU. Again.  But Yay! “Inclusion”.

  These womanist proponents are the same ones who don’t realize why it’s not fair to have biracial people be the SOLE speakers for the black experience. And let’s not even bring up the fact that there already is a movement that covers everyone. It’s called humanism.

Womanism fell under the great mistake (that may black women do) of trying to be everyone’s defender and ended up still in the mammy/ wet nurse role.  Black women (at this point) don’t have the political power to protect everyone when race and gender already put black women behind. But like a wet nurse “womanism” allows everyone to get fed at the proverbial teat except black women.

I would have liked to have movement that focused on black women. (That is where BWE and the like usually come in because like others they don’t claim to be able to defend everyone and acknowledge that it’s simply not possible.)

Finally I would like to say in the case of Womanism/Feminsm the biggest way that black women became the mammy/wet nurse was because ultimately they settled into a toxic relationship that gives nothing back and in fact asks to give up benefits that ‘supporters” are benefiting from. And like I’ve said before I don’t expect people to give up privilege… nobody sane would.  But that doesn’t mean I’m going to be a Mammy/ wet nurse/ general all around girl friday. That’s simply insanity.