Thursday, June 18, 2009

I'm So Used To Black Women Being Dissed I Almost Missed the Lesson!

For yesterday's post I wrote with a certain amount or irony how the virtue of white women was reinforced by Letterman’s very public chastisement and remains as viable as ever. Even he was bewildered about what happened. I wasn't defending what he'd said I was just surprised by the backlash. I’m certain he’s got the message now! (Bill Maher – you’re next!!) He may have thought he was just being harsh on the Palin family but what he failed to understand is that he unleashed the battle cry for a war against other white men over the continued domination of the “white” race.

White women and girls are to be protected at all costs.

I admit I hadn’t quite comprehended the full ramifications of this. As an African American woman I tend to think in historic terms of the relationship between the two and how patriarchy was reinforced during and after slavery. In other words I’ve had visions of Scarlett O’Hara dancing in my head….and I’ve wanted to take a mallet to that image. I’m certain I’m not the only one that would like to see certain things dismantled. I’ve written my share of posts were I’ve lamented ruefully how white women were being put on a pedestal because it was so painfully obvious to me that Black women were not.

I get it now.

Excerpted comment from Evia: 
Letterman had the audacity to attack a ww and her children, so other wm QUICKLY put him in his place. This sends a powerful message to OTHER wm of all ages who may be thinking about denigrating a ww publicly--to NEVER do that and if they do, they're going to be very sorry. This is why Letterman is blathering apologies all over the place. Unbeknownst to lots of AAs, many wm see plenty of faults and flaws among ww, but they understand that when you degrade your women en masse PUBLICLY, your WHOLE group is headed for destruction.
See Black women wouldn’t know what being protected is like because we're being attacked every day by other people who look like us or share a more recent lineage as well as by those that don't. They either don’t want to be part of the tribe or want to thoroughly bash it. Just so that we’re clear I’m speaking about the collective. I know there are plenty of individual situations where this is not the case.

This is why DL Idiot was allowed to go on Leno and call other Black women ugly and say he agreed with Imus. It was why Imus felt free to make such a comment in the first place. It’s why the would-be rapper Asher Roth revisited that “joke” on Twitter and couldn’t understand the angry response. It's why the denigration in "our" music will continue to lead us on the straight path to hell. It's why Nancy Grace rarely does a story on missing and exploited Black females. It's why so many women are self-medicating ourselves into an early grave. It's why many of us can't walk down the street in certain neighborhoods without being verbally assaulted with the underlying threat of physical harm. It’s also why I’m going to hear a lot of excuses from some Black men who read this post, but that the most virulent denials and objections are going to come from….cue the lights: other Black women.

We don’t know what it’s like being protected and held in such high regard.

It’s like tasting really fresh vegetables for the first time. We didn’t know it could be so good. So something must be “wrong” with it then! No, it’s just the way things are SUPPOSED TO BE!

Letterman may have thought he was deriding one woman politically and socially while being willing to use her offspring to do it. This is a teachable moment for all of us that even that ONE INCIDENT was NOT TOLERATED because it would CHIP AWAY AT THE COLLECTIVE leaving it in a WEAKENED STATE. So next time someone wants to make an excuse about how a song referring to a Black woman as a BITCH is “just a song” or “about a particular kind of woman” let’s look at this situation and compare how other white men stepped in protect their women (even if they can’t stand some of them) from one of their own. If they hadn't it would've been the start of a very slippery slope indeed.

If Letterman had been allowed to continue without pause it would have signaled it was okay for other men that it was open season. One incident multiplies, accelerates and mutates in ways you cannot control after a while. It goes from "hoes" to "no dark butts" to "why can't I talk about my preference for light-skinned women" to "I don't want to be Black" to "I want to stick my *ick in you" to "raping you is no big's the white man's fault anyway" to bye-bye collective.

Now that I’ve learned this lesson I have to ask: when are Black women going to get their respect and protection from Black men? 

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PPR_Scribe said...

We could go on and on, couldn't we. Janet and Justin... Rhianna and Brown... R. Kelly and his teenaged victim(s)... The young women of Spelman and Nelly... Dunbar Village and Al Sharpton/NAACP...

Now some folks have the nerve to get mad because Disney's new Prince to their first Black Princess is not, himself, Black.

To answer your question: On a macro level Black women will have to wait a long time to receive the same "protections" afforded White women of a certain class. (Class is definitely part of it: See Monica Lewinsky.) And if we should ever get such "protections" we'd see that it is not even all it is cracked up to be. The pedestal is still a place of control and objectification. And it requires someone else, some other group of women, to be stepped on below.

Feicia said...

"We don’t know what it’s like being protected and held in such high regard."

First of all GREAT BLOG and I'm so happy I've come across it.

I realize you're referring to BW as a group/"race" of women as opposed to individuals.

Because some of us have been lucky enough to have been protected, respected, and held in high regard by BM important to us since we left our mothers wombs.

I know I have.

And that's why we're - apparently the minority these days?- really taken aback and are aghast at the current state of affairs regarding seemingly the majority of BW.

I do clearly see what you're getting at concerning the state of BW overall.

Yes, white culture has successfully socialized most WM to respect (with marriage) and protect (by any means necessary) most WW and girls.

Other non white cultures also mostly do the same for it's women and girls because they realize that women are the first "teachers" and carry the culture/group forward into the future. Without this care, the WHOLE group is doomed.

The "black community" COULD also socialize BM to love, honor, respect, and protect BW and girls IF it wanted to.

BUT, the desire is obviously not there enough on the male part. It is the male part responsible for this respecting and protecting after all. Which makes BM as a group (there are of course exceptions thankfully that are performing their natural male role to the fullest) unique amongst the male species.

BW as a group really need to start connecting the dots and realize that the only reason why BW are statistically speaking fairing FAR worse than non BW world wide is because of an association with DBRBM.

To this day, a woman's status is mostly associated with her man. If she has a poor example of a man, or NO man, her status (and her children's) generally speaking will be low.

Men regardless of "race" who appear to chronically be in need of "saving", uplifting, supporting, ego stroking, mothering, yada yada... are a liability.

There will NEVER be any benefit to such a one sided "relationship". Only MINUSES.

Are all BM like this? Of course not. BUT, and this is a BIG but, those who are not are certainly NOT limiting themselves to BW. FAR from it.

Therefore, it is only logical to include the WHOLE SPECTRUM of good, responsible, decent, family oriented, protective, etc... men in the GLOBAL community. REGARDLESS OF RACE.

It's also prudent to realize that there are far more NON color-struck men OUTSIDE of the "black community" then inside it.

Which means these days if you're a single African-American BW interested in marriage, your chances of finding a suitable husband and future father who will not pass down the SICKNESS of anti-BW hate down to the next generation, you're more likely to find him amongst white and other non BM.

"Now that I’ve learned this lesson I have to ask: when are Black women going to get their respect and protection from Black men?

SMH See... IMO that's never going to happen on a grand scale. On an individual case by case/familial level yes, BUT on a grand "racial" and societal level no.

Because the damage is TOO deep and irreparable.

A sick person first has to WANT to be treated in order for a possible positive outcome.

They have to be willing to take a doctors advice and take their medicine.(Deprogram themselves)

BM - damaged and non - have ZERO desire for change. After all, their needs are being met in the current twisted anti-BW situation.

BW need to START focusing on NON damaged men regardless of color/"race" who have been raised to know that their role as men is naturally to love, respect, and protect the women they love and children they help create.

MOST men in the global village ALREADY realize this. And they vastly OUTNUMBER the number of single eligible BW who are interested in marriage and children.

Therefore the focus needs to stay on THESE men.

Faith at Acts of Faith Blog said...

PPR_Scribe: Yeah I admit I've admired and despised that pedestal for all of the things it represents but for all the drawbacks there's great benefit as well.

Felicia: Welcome and thank you for your detailed response. I fear you are probably right about the damage being too deep. So I hope this serves as an incentive for women to seek out the best partner they can. We're talking in terms of hetero relationships of course but the same applies across the board - as well as the majority of women will choose hetero relationships.

bwdb said...

This is very profound...The repercussions are evident with these protections in place

Check out:

Khadija said...


You asked, "when are Black women going to get their respect and protection from Black men?"-

Felicia is correct. This is not going to happen on any mass level. The mass damage is too far gone for that. At best, this will happen on an individual, case by case level in terms of AA men.

What can happen on a mass level is that more BM men will learn to value BM women only because they see OTHER, stronger, more dominant non-Black men valuing BW.

BM men are basically followers: They will value whatever and whoever this planet's dominant races of men (non-BM) value. As more BW women marry out and marry well to successful, "alpha" types of non-BM, then BM will follow the non-Black alphas' lead and value BW.

Peace, blessings and solidarity.

Evia said...

See Black women wouldn’t know what being protected is like

Well, I'm an AA woman who has been protected all of my adult life since I married fairly young--right after college. I've pretty much always felt protected by either males from my family like 2 of my uncles or one or both of my husbands. (My father was a financial provider but he wasn't physically present. My 2 uncles took the place of my father in other respects.)

Anyway, this is where a large part of "Evia" the adult woman comes from. I feel protected--not just by Darren, but I also had that with my previous husband. As an adult woman, I've been blessed to have found men who had the wherewithal (intellect, background, emotional makeup, finances, role-adherence and dedication to me) to protect me and assure me that they're going to do their utmost to protect me and my children.

When a man, especially an effective man, and in particular a brainy man, says or conveys to you that you're safe and that "I'm going to protect you," and "you have nothing to worry about," and you KNOW he means it because he's shown you that he can be counted on, it doesn't get much better than that for a woman--because most women crave safety and security.

Back to the Palin-Letterman thing, I'm sure that even some wm who didn't like Sarah Palin at all still felt that they had to be MEN when she was under attack from a man, because it no longer was about her. It was about them--and their role as men. Also, they knew they'd look like failures in the eyes of ww in general if they didn't defend Palin against a powerful wm.

I can see now that there's no point in discussing this "protection" thing with the majority of AA men. I think that so many bw make themselves feel so bad by trying to motivate, appeal, guilt AA men to act like MEN--and in particular the protecting part. I think that some bw think that AA males are refusing to perform their role when I honestly think that most AA males ***do not KNOW*** how to perform the role as protectors. Protection is really multi-facted and it has to be learned and fine-tuned over a period of time.

So where exactly does an AA woman go from that point when he just won't do it? Nagging him or demanding that he "act like a man" or even trying to be patient with him in the hopes that he will somehow just magically start acting like a man, is NOT going to work. I do think that if some AA males knew what to do, they'd do it, but they just don't know how and most are too ego-based to seek out help.

This doesn't apply to ALL AA males, but in general this is why there's no point in focusing on those males for most AA women. For best results, the bulk of AA women just need to look ONLY at quality males who come from better functioning communities.

Faith at Acts of Faith Blog said...

CW: I saw that. It may be the only time I voluntarily go to the T Cot website!!! It's like Drudge Report - a lot of rhetoric and sensationalism.

Khadija: Black men as followers. Has it really come to that? I guess so. Wow. I think I'm still trying to give "leeway" in theory on some level or I wouldn't be surprised by that.

Evia: Thanks for the detailed response as well. I think it's really beneficial for people to hear from our life experiences and what it's like being one of the protected women like Felicia also discussed.

Sister Seeking said...

Peace and blessings Acts of Faith

Please check out this clip from you tube if you have time:

Look at how some non-black men have enough decency and morality to stand up for black women.

Faith at Acts of Faith Blog said...

Sister Seeking: Welcome and thanks for the link.

PVW said...

Sorry I'm late.

I migrated here from Khadija's.

You asked:

when are Black women going to get their respect and protection from Black men?

My reply:

1. When both black men and women discontinue seeing black women as "strong." Strong women are not seen as being in need of protection.

2. When black men stop seeing black women as competition in the fight against racism, the notion that black men suffer more, that sexism is irrelevant or unimportant, and that as a result, black men need greater protection than black women do.

3. When sexist black men discontinue seeing their scoring against black women as a means of building camaraderie with: other black men, non-black men and non-black women.

Faith at Acts of Faith Blog said...

Pioneer Valley Woman: Welcome and thank you for weighing in here. My comment section remains open and there's no deadline for discussion. These are serious issues that require a lot of time and thought to work through. We all move at different paces. I appreciate you stopping by.