Do you know why I never ever get involved in the, 'What did black women do to make the situation the way it is in the black community' discussions? I dont because it is an invalid argument built on the premise that black women have equal responsibility for creating the choas and dysfunction that reigns within the black social grouping.
The argument makes black women out to be co-creators with black men. It refuses to recognize the power differential that exists between male and female in a world that privileges male over female, and thus a world which gives males the determining role in how things eventually turn out.
The argument is one which wants to assign to black women equal agency in terms of determining how the situation has panned out for the black social group. Indeed note how when black folks raise these, 'What about how black women did X, Y, Z', you can see they are talking from a position of 'black women were doing it at the same time as black men, with the same social permission and prerogative, at the same level and with the same intent and purpose'! Note that none of them is trying to even look at how that black women in their actions of X, Y, Z, could well be 'responding' to a situation already determined/set up by black men. Indeed flattening time lines and making it all seem simultenous is a key black way of obscuring black male culpability indeed reducing the insight that a 3-D dimensioned discussion of events would cast on the situation.
But take a look at how, when there are general discussions about the situation in our planet, how that there is total comfort with assigning white females a lesser role in shaping the world as we know it and any system of injustice and inequity that exists. Indeed if the truth must be told, white women are rarely if ever indicted as creators of the systems of oppression and injustice. Most analyst are very uncomfortable in positioning white women (who they deem as equally oppressed in patriarchy and capitalist structures), as in anyway 'responsible' for any unjust or unequal set up. Those that are reevaluating the role of white women are more likely to denote them as 'colluders' with white men or 'internalizers' of oppressive ideas and beliefs never 'generators' of these.
But again note that when 'liberals' suddenly want to turn the spotlight on the situation within the black social grouping and if they are able somehow to move away from 'the white male and government is the source and root of all evil', discourse, they suddenly and automatically level the social standing between black women and men to make black women out as co-creators of the bad situation as it stands. See, while they are happy to 'lessen' white female culpability for the shape of things in the wider world, when it comes down to black women who have multiple levels of oppression to contend with, you would think they would know to then deem black women less responsible, but oh no, these same folks are happy to load down black women with equal if not 'more' blame that black men because yes indeed the sentiment that black men are sometimes 'victims' of black women can be noted proceeding from the writings of 'liberal' folks! See why I am fast loosing respect for so called 'liberals'.
And the worst thing is that it is so automatic and such a blind spot that even when you point out, what they are doing and how they switch their principles when it comes round to black women, they deny it and maintain that they are just being fair and consistent. I have been reviewing a number of articles penned by white men in particular over some of the media attention BWE work has garnered over the years and consistently their sympathies are lying with black men!
Once again I will reiterate that there is a power differential existing between black men and women due to males being privileged in our society thus black women cannot and should not be held responsible for the shape of things within the black social setting, indeed once you account for the overarching system's shaping of the black situation, the next folk in line for being responsible for the black situation are black men. Period.
Do black women have a role in the state of affairs particularly their own situation? Sure and indeed the fact that ultimately they end up taking the negative brunt of it all (indeed the impact of OOWetc etc are more on black women), reinforces for me the fact that they are not in the driving seat. What I (and most BWE) realize when looking at the role of black women is that they are often colluding with black men towards their own oppression and 'responding' in ways that aggravate the situation to their own detriment. This has a lot to do with how they are socialized and the doctrines and dogmas within which they are socialized, which causes this maladaptive response. As long as black women continue to be held sway by these black doctrines, they will continue to respond in these maladaptive and maladjusted ways. This is why the thrust of BWE work is to 'retrain' black women in the ways of looking after their own best interest, to train black women in the ways of 'self-interest awareness' and self advocacy and make them become knowlegable about how how third parties are trying to harness their rescources and efforts for their selfish benefit and with no thought of reciprocating!
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