“Do you date dark skinned girls?”
My brother upon meeting my now wife, asked me this question. Why would he ask if I have a preference of skin colour with who I date? Somewhere in his consciousness is this idea that some men prefer a “browning” (a “browning” is just a light skinned black person). The converse is true but not as popular as the former. For some men, beauty is brown skin, long hair, straight nose and thin lips, big boobs and larger derriere. Where did we get this standard from? Who devised this normal and made it a thing desired?
This is really years of conditioning, over 400 years of education. We have been sold an idea that the standard of beauty is a lean frame, long hair and brown/white skin. White is ideal and black is substandard. All the ad campaigns, TV commercials, movies, sitcoms and magazines have taught us what we should desire. There is a whole discussion to be had on the impact of these images on our women. But for now, the focus is how men have been sold a lie. As a consequence, our black women are undervalued and unappreciated. Men are more drawn to their butts and boobs than their brains.
Have you ever met a high coloured person who was supremely unintelligent and incredibly ignorant? Growing up, we naturally assumed brown/white persons to be smarter. Why is it a norm for a dark skinned person to be dunce but we always expect the brown/white person to be bright? It appears embarrassing for this brown/white kid to be so clueless. Black kids who are equally clueless are treated with indifference. It’s almost as if this is expected, this is a norm. We end up despising our own and elevating the other to a lofty, more desirable position.
Then the prejudice comes in and adds insult to injury. Imagine being told, indirectly, that you don’t qualify. “But I have a degree” she says, “and the requisite experience.” Still there is one thing you lack – that light complexion. We know they haven’t got any papers to be seated in that post but they have the look. Some jobs are about the looks and not what you got from books.
I’m not in any way angry at the person who has been given privilege because of the colour of their skin. They had no control over that. They were born that way. However, I am angered by the existence of a system that disadvantaged one set of people because of their colour. The fact that such ideas persist until today speaks to their power and the intent of their creators.
They got us straining to broadcast the accomplishments of black persons. Is it that without the PhD they’re a nobody? I notice many black folks upon earning a PhD, insist on being referred to as Doctor. There is a great emphasis on titles and accolades when the content of their character is far more important. We are more than our qualifications say. So you have all these letters behind your name and still treat people like crap? After acquiring all this education you’re still morally bankrupt and undisciplined. Conversely, there are many successful people who never went to school. Some of the wisest persons I’ve met have no formal education.
Automatically we see Caucasians as experts, as pretty, as ideal. They can make outlandish claims and we accept them without question. “Columbus discovered the new world.” But people were already living here. The picture of Jesus, a man born in the middle east, has European features. So even God is white? Thankfully we can fact check statements and we have the will to doubt dubious claims by said persons. One thing is sure, our present tastes and dislikes are a credit to our education; both which appeals to the conscious and subconscious mind.
It is now time we begin to appreciate our unique qualities and celebrate our blackness. What we think about and how we view our own kind has got to change. The black woman has no rival. She is incomparable. I would not venture to say she is better than a non-black female. However, she is no less of a trophy than any brown skin, long hair, thin lip, thin nose woman. Her darker skin tone and nappy hair does not make her less pretty than a light skinned black woman. We need to stop associating black with ugly. Not just that, but it is time we refuse the negative connotations associated with black that are applied to us.
I am black and I’m proud to be black. I love black women.