Why Are Black Women so Angry?

Just last week, I was talking to my roommate about problematic,internet platforms like worldstarhiphop. Alas, this week, Marc Lamont Hill hosted a  panel on Huff Post Live to discuss how  worldstarhiphop normalizes and incentivizes violence amongst people of color. I was extremely excited because 1. I have been voicing my concerns about this website for years now and 2. Professor Brittney Cooper is all that and a bag of chips and I couldn’t wait to hear the valuable thoughts she’d bring to the discussion.  The discussion panel also included RhymeFest, Professor Shayne Lee, Filmmaker Mandon Lovett, and T.V personality Amanda Seales.

**Sidenote: I’ve done a pretty good job of avoiding the Sharkeisha video. I refuse to watch it because I have no desire to support worldstarhiphop nor the unsettling pathologies videos like this perpetuate. So of course, they opened the discussion with footage of the fight, in which, I was angry, because I had done such a good job of avoiding the fight. I digress.

So I’m watching the panel discussion, I’m agreeing with half of what’s being said and disagreeing with the other half, the usual. At some point Professor Cooper aka Proffessor Crunk (check out her: http://www.crunkfeministcollective.com)  brings up the valid point that violence initiated and carried out by a black man against another black man is taken with a higher rate of severity and call to action than violence initiated and carried out by a black woman against another black woman. She supported this notion by pointing out our culture’s reaction to the Sharkeisha video. We have laughed, shared the video amongst co-workers, and snickered when watching this violent video. I am curious as to why violence between black women is taken with a grain of salt?  What pathologies have developed in our culture where this behavior is basically encouraged by the prospect of internet fame?

Anyways, at this point in the discussion, all hell broke lose. RhymeFest found it somewhere deep in his patriachial-filled heart to raise his voice at this sister while asking her, “Why you so mad?” She held her own,obviously, and stated her point very clearly and informatively.

But to RhymeFest and to everyone else who can’t understand why Professor Cooper and womanist like myself are mad, here’s a glimpse into the reason: Black women are constantly being silenced and asked to stay in our place. These messages are sent explicitly through our interactions with black/white men and implicitly through racially-charged stereotypes that impact society’s perceptions of us. We are hardly ever allowed to express ourselves, our struggles, our pains, without being typecast as the “Angry Black Woman,” even when these expressions are valid and grounded in sound rationale. And in the select platforms we are given to express our opinions, such as this, we are asked to back down and think of the greater good before our own (which is what we have been known to do since the beginning of the African-American family.)

Rhymefest accused Professor Cooper of bringing division to the “good fight.” The “good fight” being the fight against violence in black communities aka the fight to end violence amongst black men. If there is division, which there is, it is because many black men  refuse to acknowledge the experience(s) of the black woman. They refuse to support our fight, simply because they can’t wipe enough patriarchal, misogynistic, and sexist crust out of their eyes to see merit in our struggles and in our attempts to surpass these struggles.  It is as if they feel our success will put theirs in jeopardy.

Why are we constantly asked to be silenced? Why are we constantly asked to validate, support, and uphold the black man, when there is no reciprocation? We are not asking for validation, but so much as a mutual understanding of the under workings of oppression, sexisms, etc that influence black women’s lives daily. It is not that we do not love our men, our community, and our kids, it is that we no longer find it advantageous to put our experiences aside for the sake of the community. We are better than that and we deserve more.

So yes, we are angry RhymeFest and we have every right to be.

http:/http://live.huffingtonpost.com/r/segment/worldstarhiphop-violence/52d0424478c90a7d3800048d

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3 thoughts on “Why Are Black Women so Angry?

  1. Hi,

    Just stumbled upon your article today. I’m a 50-year old black woman and I believe there’s a hugh difference between black women and ghetto, hoodrat females. Ever since I was a young girl, I had noticed (so-called) adult females act/speak more childish and immature than children. Back in the 70’s, most black females were single with children and that’s how they wanted it. Like today, ghetto females would much rather have access to many males than one man or husband. Back then, it became apparent to me that single black females who were free to mingle weren’t good black women or marriage material anyway. Let me give you an example:

    The female who gave birth to me was pregnant with me when she got married in the 60’s. Couple of years later she gave birth to my brother. While we were living in Florida, he gets a phone call from his family in New Jersey. They tell him to get back in Jersey because I wasn’t his child. It was revealed that before they got married she’d been sleeping with his cousin. Now supposedly this had broken his heart and crushed his ego. But that can’t be true because a few years after my sisters were born and they are his.

    They ended up beoming “f**k buddies. It was all they qualified being because obviously there was no trust. You aren’t capable of actually forgiving, working through situations, putting the past behind you, and working to be a family if it isn’t within you. What bothered me the fact that her, him, and both families held me responsible for breaking up their marriage. I found out that was the reason I was treated differently by everyone. While I’m thinking that we’re getting along, the rest of my family are saying things to each other and other people behind my back. For years this was going on while they were visiting my house being invited to my dinners and bbq’s, even partying in bars. Even though I didn’t make it much of a habit hanging in bars (because I’d much rather party in the comfort of my

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing. In my experience, often times we’re so wrapped up in our own dysfunction, we’re unable or see how our dysfunction hurts people, especially those around us. I think the saying “hurt people, hurt people” is very real. I pray that as you continue your journey in healing and in becoming the most supreme version of yourself that forgiveness will be near, clarity even closer, and joy will surround you.It is your birthright to be happy.

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  2. Hmm. I bet nobody’s tripping over the “Sharkeisha” vid because they were probably fighting over some busted dude who they both thought they were going steady with or something to that degree. smh. It had to have stemmed from some form of hate. Rhymefest gets off to that, as does the majority of society. That’s how they perceive African American women to behave and carry themselves. We’re a mockery to them. I find it frustrating. The fact that so many African American women are at war with each other and themselves is frustrating. Oh, but because we’re not shooting up the place like our male counterparts, its a nonissue. They must have forgotten the fact that we bear the children. Life comes from our wombs. Our pains, insecurities, struggles, and triumphs, are just as important as theirs. Rhymefest & company should probably go visit the rightful owner of the womb they came from and see if she’s laughing. Glad I read this when I did

    xoxo

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