Updated: Nov 1, 2021
Our culture seems to be changing at a rapid pace, and for lack of a better understanding, I am becoming nostalgic of what it once was. When did it become so common to hate being who we are! When did we begin seeing ourselves only in the way that we perceive the rest of America does! The we that I am referring to is Black People.
Having a young Black Woman as a daughter, I recall the first time, and pretty much every time after, that she put weave in her hair, and how I hated it. It wasn't just because I didn't like to see her with weave in her head, even though I didn't, it was more about who she seemed to become when she had someone else's hair on her head. It may sound crazy, but there was a different attitude that was noticeably activated every time she wore weave. I saw it in many of my relationships with my ex's as well. But let me not go too far with the weave thing, I don't want sisters to quit reading before I make my point, and I promise hair weaves are not the point!
To be fair, I've noticed that brotha's been going wide with dying they're hair these days, and I mean young pre-fifty year old brotha's! It's like somebody set a new standard as to what's accepted as beauty, and we're acquiescing. We've always been rebellious, in many cases when we shouldn't have been, but nevertheless that's been our culture.
I remember when big lips used to be cracked on back in the day, until a certain group of people began enlarging their lips. Big Butts undoubtedly were disapproved of also, not by us of course, but mainstream wouldn't showcase sista's who were blessed with them. They've been the in thing for almost ten years now, the bigger the better, but proportion, as well as health don't seem to be considered in many cases.
The pictures that I chose to highlight for this blog are of sista's with distinct freckles on their faces. Today, they may be considered as very beautiful, even to a mainstream audience. But, we all know the mainstream is a fickle B, who changes it's mind like weather patterns! I'm not sure if I'm being as clear as I desire to be, but to me beauty is always found in the more natural a thing or a human is. We were all created fearfully and wonderfully by the Creator, God the Father, even Jesus. Feel how you want to about that statement, it is what it is, but we each are beautiful, and it's up to us to protect, as well as project that beauty. It's also up to us to be damned before we let something outside of us dictate what is beautiful, especially when it comes to us as a people. We've given people permission to deem what's valuable in our culture, how long it's considered to hold that value, and whether or not the value that is taken from us can benefit our communities. On a previous blog I asked what is it that people see when they see us, a statement taken from the miniseries created by Ava DuVernay about the Central Park Five. Instead of asking what do they see, meaning every other group of people besides those who identify themselves as Black, I'm now asking what is it that we see!
When I look at Lil Kim, Sammy Sosa, members of the African Continent who overwhelmingly have been bleaching their skin to look white, even Michael Jackson, who bleached his skin, changed his nose, and was still in the process of having surgeries before he passed away, to name a few. I wonder do we still believe "Black Is Beautiful," and are we still proud to be!