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NOTE: I admit that I had reservations about posting this article. However, Ms. Merriweather has a right to express her thoughts and opinions, and she has been very honest about what she says. So, as always, comment below.
By Lavern Merriweather:
There seems to be a growing and serious divide among black men and women. Not to say that black males and females have always gotten along, but these days it seems to be getting worse.
Many black women columnists and bloggers on the internet are expressing their disgust about the so-called Ray Rice scandal and how it is being handled by NFL commissioner Roger Goddell. While I agree that what Rice did was abhorrent, I also feel that there is a lot of fake self-serving grandstanding being used for selfish purposes. If there is one thing I can’t stand it’s a hypocrite, especially one who is very glaring obvious with their inconsistency, then acts as if nobody else is going to notice.
Several black females have weighed in, and even though I can understand their anger, I have a problem with the motivation behind it. I have written many critical emails to some black women in the blogworld questioning how they can one minute decry the deaths of young black males like Trayvon Martin and Mike Brown then freely engage white males in their blatantly racist double standards towards black male celebrities. When you claim continuously that your outrage is being fueled by a despicable act, then shouldn’t you be disgusted with ANY male that commits it?
Black women are many times just as silent as white men when it comes to domestic violence from white male celebrities. Hell, they are silent for any criminal accusation directed towards a white male that’s famous. This leads me to believe that you are more concerned with getting your licks in on black men than actually giving a shit about the issue itself. If that’s not the case, then you should either attack all the guilty parties or fess up and say “Yes, I only want to demonize certain people,” since that is clearly what you are doing anyway. Either come right out and admit that this is a personal issue between just you and black males. Or stop pretending that it’s about the issue of violence towards women when you are selective in your vilification.
I heard very little if any outcry from black women on the internet about the appalling assault on grandmother Marlene Pinnock. Marlene is the black female pedestrian that was savagely beaten by a white male cop in California for – what I could see – was doing nothing more than crossing the street. Blow after blow was rained on Ms. Pinnock’s head by this thug. Still, black women have yet to unleash a derogatory rant on the white male responsible. And before anyone complains that some black women did respond, please email me those posts, because I have yet to see one. Trust me when I say I did look for them, but I never found one.
Not only that, black women on the web decry of this so-called ‘black male privilege’ without ever mentioning how extremely limited it is or ever speak of their own. Black female intellectuals that speak out about the daily luxuries afforded to black men seem to be forgetting about their own. By that, I mean precisely the one that allows them via a computer keyboard to denounce behavior not exclusive to black men as if it were.
Last time I checked, domestic violence cut across every line, be it racial, social, economical and yes even gender. Yet to hear black women tell it, Becky, as she is known, can fend for her damn self when it comes to dealing with an abusive white male, especially one that is well known and beloved by an easily influenced public. It appears that there are some boats black women are not willing to rock.
Another thing that bothers me about all the pious blither blather is when black women speak so dismayed about the issue of facing both racism and sexism. That’s funny, because they don’t ever bring up the fact that it often times comes from the very SAME person! If you think for one second some of that the racism you experience from white males isn’t infused just as much with your predisposed gender, then I have a huge statue that sits on Ellis Island to sell you.
I’m also very troubled by the latest trend of black women demanding that black females who are killed by police in America get as much attention as the Sean Bells and Mike Browns of the world. I must be missing something when the fuck did this become competition? Now, we need a scoring chart to see who life has more value? What a damn crock! I don’t disagree that black women should get equal time too, but to make it a problem that exists between the sexes is foolish and pure bunk. If black women feel so slighted, then why aren’t YOU speaking out on the deaths of black women at the hands of cops who in all likelihood were white, rather than jumping on bandwagons that you are fully aware come from a place of pseudo outrage born out of white male arrogance?
Black women that are currently siding with their white male brethren on the Ray Rice situation could just as easily spend some of that time calling out their white colleagues for ignoring the plight of Ms. Pinnock or any black women for that matter. In case they haven’t noticed, the very people they are so pissed at for not discussing the deaths of young black women are the very white males now fawning over Ray’s wife Janay, as they make a mockery of the all too real problem of spousal abuse.
Brotha himself has discussed at length his disappointment in his fellow black males for how they treat black women, as well as apologized for his what he feels is a privilege that he can enjoy while black women cannot. Although I don’t disagree, I feel that black women, if they truly mean what they say, should also acknowledge the part they play in tearing down the black males that they claim, at certain times, to be defending. That also goes for this supposed irritation at Becky, but standing side by side with white female feminuts when they target black men in the most racist and sickening way.
The call for respect needs to be expressed by both sides, not just one, and black women need to put much of their money where their mouth is. This constantly trying to have it both ways leads the conversation in way too many directions.