Saturday, April 18, 2009

You cannot love Black Men Unconditionally and maintain a Positive Regard for Black Women

I never watch the Tyra Banks show. I have come across it once or twice, when I was in the room where it was being watched by others. I have heard it being said that Tyra does not support black women. I am not aware of this and being a fan of ANTM, I would probably say she is supportive of black women, and in a recent cycle of the program, I sensed her upset when the black contestants did not make it past the six week mark. In fact when the last minority girl left at week seven I saw Tyra visibly upset.

However this ‘supportiveness’ of sisters can go out of the window under a different setting. When the people involved are black men and black women, and in this situation, I see how easily black women like Tyra might suddenly turn towards favouring black men and disdaining black women. And this might be what some of you have observed, and commented about on her talk shows, where it was said that she gives black men ‘the benefit of doubt’ and tolerance for the actions and activities that she would vilify her female guests for. An example is her warm response to Denis Rodman compared with that to Karen Stefans of video vixen fame.

Black women have ‘learnt’ how to be unsupportive of other black women over the years particularly in service of black men.

Back to the topic at hand. I said above, that you cannot love black men unconditionally and maintain a regard for black women. You must love one and hate the other. This is simply to say that hanging on to your unconditional love and support of black men requires that you get irritated and fed up with black women and downright hostile towards them on the whole. It will require you having major problems and a negative attitude towards fellow black women, and a clear impatience with their struggles and complaints.

Have you ever wondered why you are short and often irritated with fellow black women sometimes just by them walking past you? I am not talking about being exasperated with the foolish things they do sometimes, I mean you just suddenly and without provocation, fly off the handle with them or become impatient and then later wonder why you were so easily irritated with black women. Well better check to see, maybe its because you want to retain your good imagery of black men and black women are distorting this picture for you.

Lets face it, black women are complaining about mistreatment at the hands of black men. They talk about being victimized, and discriminated against, of being the ‘target’ of black men’s anger etc. For any black woman to want to continue to hang onto her regard, unconditional love, support and faith in black men, outbursts and fall outs with your ’sistas’ are are given, as the presence of these women will not allow you to keep up the pretence of saintly brotherhood any longer. They are indeed turning the channel away from your preferred picture of black men and each day the evidence that they are not the men you had hoped to pin your black hopes and dreams to mounts, and so will tensions and frictions with the ones who are forcing you to reassess this sacred perspective.

Think about that next time you feel ’irritated’ by black women and their condition.

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Anonymous said...

Interesting post. I must say I don't watch either of Tyra's shows but I do not subscribe to this either/or theory. While as a black woman, I've never subscribed to the "help a brother out" thing, I do find myself irritated by other black women, usually the ones that could fit into the stereotypical "ghetto" type. The loud, eye-rolling, teeth-sucking, backbiting ones who stare you down even if you have not said one word to them or can't be bothered to say 'excuse me' or 'thank you'. Perhaps Tyra has ran into plenty of those too.

PioneerValleyWoman said...

For the life of me, I just don't get this "unconditional love" thing for black men that so many black women have.

The only men who have any unconditional love from me are those who have earned it, because they have proved their love, care and support for me, men like those in my family and close family friends.

I don't have unconditional love for complete strangers; that is beyond foolish!

But I know where it comes from. These black women are so hopelessly black-male identified and so dedicated to their race-women fantasties of a strong black community headed by loving and dedicated strong black men, that they believe they can will it into existence through unconditional love.

It does not happen. Giving unconditional love where it is not earned leads quite often to undeserved rewards, ie., men getting rewards when they should not be, when they have not proven they deserved it. What follows then? Black male entitlement and black men taking advantage of black women.

Beyond ridiculous.

Pamela said...

The blog title is a true statement unfortunately. I absolutely think this is the most outrageous allegiance I have ever seen in my life. However in too many cases bw fit this category. This is why I avoid bw like this. I have no drama or experience with this dynamic these days. I have a life to live and refuse to deal with stupid people by choice. Anyone that says that a human being, no matter the context, cannot do anything wrong is stupid. Unconditional love for bm regardless of how egregious their behavior is stupid.

Taylor-Sara said...

Halima, you know the main times I find myself getting upset with bw is when I catch a show like Maury and bw are on there screaming, threatening, acting like fools for attention. I'm sure you've seen them stomping across the stage and cursing like a sailor. I absolutely hate that image! I also find my patience running short when bm mistreat them all day long, and they pretend not to notice in their pathological need to establish rapport with them. As for Tyra, I don't watch her show, I find it too bm -ass kissing, and the way she treated Karina S. really turned my stomache. She never even gave the poor girl a chance to defend herself, she just jumped all over her, and said she had no right to kiss and tell. I say she had every right, and like K.S. said. If they are upset about anything I've revealed in this book, they should not have done it. I saw that show, and could not believe my eyes. I have never seen Tyra treat a ww or a bm like that. I stopped watching that day....

Anonymous said...

You make perfect sense, as usual. I agree with your assesement of Tyra. She is supportive of Black women, a little more so than the usual, but like most Black women (Since we have been taught to hate ourselves by the Black community for the benefit of Black men) this support fades whenever the almighty Black male is present. I don't blame her though, nor do I blame the ordinary non-famous sisters. I blame Black men and the Black community for targeting us for all these years to be the victims of their mess. We Black females need to be taught to love our selves from the ground up. That should have been done when we were little girls, but these blogs are a great place to start, and maybe we can set in motion a new generation of self-loving/supporting Black females by spreading what we know about Black female empowerment to the young Black girls who we come in contact with.

ValeriesWorld said...

What you have said is right and I don't think she really loves herself. She will pretend to do so, everytime you see her with in a relationship, it is like she is not with the person. To be honest, I am not a fan of Miss Banks.

foreverloyal said...

I'm not sure I believe in unconditional love, generally.

ActsofFaithBlog said...

I totally understand your perspective on this. It's the same attitude that other women have towards the "other woman". Instead of rightfully calling out their man's behavior they save ALL the vitriol for the woman as if she is SOLELY responsible for the choices he made.

Now having said that because I live in a city where there's ample public transit I do get bothered by the behavior of those who are loud and obnoxious within a public space. It can vary from the extremely high volume cell phone calls, to the gum smacking to being aggressive.

The fact that so many BW would have disdain for other BW goes back to that racialized sexism aka "love your sons, but raise your daughters" crap. So it's no wonder women are so harsh. They're doing everything by themselves and are PISSED about it!

cool_splash1 said...

I have a problem with her IR segs. She loves to show bm/other as in the bm/iw couple a while ago and how the girls family weren't happy etc. and how the two were so much in love, but the bwam she got the woman to see that she wasn't in love with her husband, but wanted her kids to be light with so called good hair. Many people were like wow such self hate, but then I thought how do we really know that the woman came to that conclusion on her own and not because Tyra planted something that wasn't there to begin with.

I didn't care for her show after her talk with the Asian woman and Tyra kept telling her that she wanted surgery on her eye because of ww's ideal of beauty and then proceeded to say that's why she still Wears a weave etc. I was like you can do what the hell you Want? And how can you tell someone about their hair if you haven't worked on how you feel about your own?

ANTM she actually got mad at a girl because the girl told her she was uncomfortable on a romance cover shoot, because that was her first time being in bed with a man. Tyra was like that's no excuse because she was doing those types of shoots at 15. I'm thinking WGAH.