So I was reading a Clutch magazine article the other day written by Bene Viera entitled “Are you a Rose or a Thorn in the Black Man’s side?” The article itself wasn’t that groundbreaking. I didn’t read anything in it that was wildly controversial or offensive. But the comments section just fucking exploded. You would have thought Al Qaeda wrote a blog titled “Why Jews are evil” and the readership consisted only of ADL members and Hamas loyalists. Witness one comment:
I’m probably more of a thorn. I regard most black men with an air of disdain. Too many of them are liars, players, and have no interest in black women. The black man you described in your article is somewhere salivating over an Asian, Latina, or white woman… Trust & believe sweetie. He is.
Honestly I barely pay any attention to black men and rarely speak to them unless I absolutelly need to. The only black men I care about are my two younger brothers and President Obama. The rest are sorry ass bums with more kids and baby mamas than money in the bank who always have an excuse and are looking for sympathy. I have no sympathy or praise for them. I like and respect the ones who give me the same in return. Other than that, the black man can keep on stepping. I have no time or patience for their games and schemes.
My natural reaction was one of disgust, disdain, and hatred. My inclination was to rip into her something awful. But I thought better of it. I don’t know her from a hole in the wall and yet, she made me feel some kind of way. So instead I said this:
@cosmoblkgirl: “Honestly I barely pay any attention to black men and rarely speak to them unless I absolutely need to.” Wow. That statement sounds like it comes from a place of deep disappointment and hurt which has turned into some real hostility. I don’t know how or if it’s even possible for you to have a productive relationship with a black man with that kind of worldview, but I hope something happens to lessen your pain. That’s a lot to carry around.
I was surprised buy what I got: honesty. Not anger, not insults, just what she was feeling:
@ Brandon St. Randy Too much disappointment & hurt to mention. I don’t trust any of them. It is very doubtful I will ever let my guard down again. When I go out with friends and brothas approach our table, I’m the one who excuses herself and goes to the bar or the bathroom. When I’m out and about, I keep my headphones on and my eyes are staring straight ahead. I don’t have time to get off track and fall prey to a man with malicious intent. It may be extreme to you and others reading but the last brotha I was with I gave him all the love, encouragement, and support he needed and in return he used me, lied to me, and played on my sympathy. He broke me. That’s why a black man gets NOTHING from me anymore.
- I was busy scratching my balls. Couldn’t hear you. Louder. Your Boat to hell leaves soon. #fb @drgoddess @dreamhampton313 11:45 AM Aug 22nd via Twitter for BlackBerry® in reply to drgoddess
So another poster on the clutch piece said this:
My field requires me to study a lot of research that covers many different cultural and psychological issues. One of which that interests me is gender mistrust in the Black community. It seems that, when we meet a Black person of the opposite gender, so many walls are put up due to the expectation of “attack”. We are so hypersensitive of being made or expected to submit that we seem to equate natural courtesies with injustice (example here; support/love=submit/degrade). OF COURSE it’s natural in any healthy relationship for each person to want to support and openly love the other; EXCEPT when one thinks that the other person is looking to take advantage (in such cases, the focus switches from sharing love, to self protection). Speaking only for myself, I find myself verbally and explicitly asserting my worth more often with BM than any other group, as if I EXPECT them to automatically think otherwise. From what I’ve read, heard, and experienced, BM seem to think the same about us (BW). I feel that I have so much of this type of baggage that I’ve given up hope of having a fulfilling relationship with a BM (call me bag lady, Erica ^_^). Until we can learn to enter a relationship and dialogue without all of the baggage of mistrust, the issue of “who supports who” is always going to be an area of fiery debate and the simple job of coming together (in terms of culture/gender or relationships) is going to be undercut by fears that The Others are merely out to control and devalue us.
I think she hit the nail on the head. Thoughts?