Your Ignorance Around Black Womanhood Shall NOT Make Work and Unsafe Conditions for Me

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“I will not have my life narrowed down.  I will not bow down to somebody else’s whim or to someone else’s ignorance. ”  ~ Bell Hooks It is n...




“I will not have my life narrowed down. 
I will not bow down to somebody else’s whim or to someone else’s ignorance. ” 

~ Bell Hooks

It is no secret that when ignorant people choose to stay ignorant, other people suffer.  Black people know that well. Women know that well.

So, in recent years in conversations around safety for women and girls, I found myself disappointed by a concerning number of Black women academics, authors, and leaders that I once looked to for information sharing and alliance.










I silently parted ways with them when too many of them publicly, proudly, and oddly asserted:  "Black women aren't considered women so" ..... that somehow equals: 

1. Anybody really could be a woman, change their sex, and have the authority to speak over women on issues pertaining to womanhood and even girlhood.  

2. We should actively fight for males to share our private spaces. I mean hard and sacrificially. Even at the risk of our own safety. 

The extreme degree of mean girl venom behind these repeated assertions from Black women, brands, and platforms that we admired stunned many of us. 

Most of us who challenged them or simply kept on doing the work that we have always been doing-working to end violence against women and girls-were shunned, threatened, disinvited to paid engagements, and harassed. Accused of being some freshly invented form of "hateful". 

Black Women’s Caucus Statement Against Gender Ideology | WE Survive Abuse

Of course, those who never miss an opportunity to hate on Black women gleefully joined the chorus. Glad for one more opportunity. 

Such is this life. 


Ignorant People Are Not New Here

Listen, I was a child who loved to listen to stories as told by the elders.  I remember my grandmothers telling me many of the stereotypes and outright lies that some white people believe about Black people. 




Tales & Tails

I recall my grandmothers sharing stories about some white people holding the firm belief that Black people have tails.

Toni Elling: They Thought Black People Had Tails - YouTube (short)

Clearly, Black people do not have tails because ignorant folks believe it so.




Hair

I recall being told that head wraps could be traced back to the belief that our hair texture has power (and my some of my elders believed that our hair does have spiritual power) And that maybe our hair has the power to seduce men and lure them away from their good wives and children. 

Still to this day, Black people are being discriminated against because of our unique hair texture. We can't even make it to mid-September before a Black child is suspended for wearing their natural Black textured hair to school.  

Black women online and in the media are still getting hate mail and nasty comments about their hair.  The work to pass the CROWN Act, which makes it illegal to discriminate against our hair, goes on.  To this day.








Pain

I recall learning far later in life that a large number of people believe that Black people do not feel pain. Generations after J. Marion Simms operated on Black women without anesthesia, medical professionals are still failing to LISTEN to Black women who are pregnant.  

And to this day, we have a global Black maternal health crisis. 







In spite of what ignorant people believe, Black people feel pain.




Just Telling Lies about Slavery

People still believe that slaves were treated "well." That they gained "job skills."




The opinions of ignorant individuals, regardless of their race, should not influence policy or law. In fact, these should be created to protect the innocent from the misguided thoughts and beliefs of those who are mentally unstable.


Every day, new misconceptions, stereotypes, and falsehoods about Blackness and womanhood are revealed. Some of this ignorance stems from a genuine lack of understanding, while some can be deemed as insanity. And there are those who simply exhibit malicious intent.


It is important to recognize that despite what ignorant individuals may believe, there was nothing humane or moral about 400 years of slavery.


Compassion

As a Black woman, I definitely understand that racism troubles and tampers with the mind, your sense of self-worth, and self-esteem.  It is for this reason that I parted ways with these folks.  At first, I was angry. Furious.


How could they say these things? Out loud? In public? In front of the entire world? How could they mislead the young people? Then I began to embrace the idea that racism had harmed them in ways that maybe it didn't damage others. 

Still, I need to maintain distance and  boundaries to protect my own sense of self-worth, self-esteem, and sanity. And my doctor stays on me about managing my blood pressure

I am highly offended by calls to surrender my safety on behalf of anyone other than any child in crisis or danger and my loved ones. Especially, when one must factor in that it is rare for any group to make sacrifices for Black women .....who are not celebrities.  


Like too many of us, as a Survivor of abuse, my health, safety & well-being have been compromised and I'm still living with that.

As a woman, I have rights. Many of those rights are there to protect my safety and well-being as it relates to male violence because males have made it very necessary. 

That does not change because a male changes his mind about something or has an "aha" moment about something in his life. 

That's not new. Males have had thoughts and beliefs about everything in existence (and non-existence) that you can think of since time immemorial. 


   I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity.

A male can wake up today and believe that God made him king, left him in charge, and all women and girls are his wives. That has nothing to do with me. That should be between him and his treatment team.  I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity.

 I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity.

I say the same about the male who believes that being married to his wife entitles him to encroach upon my private spaces because his religious beliefs mean he goes where she goes...... I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity.


 I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity.

I say the same about the male who believes that he should be in my private spaces because he needs to be with his daughter. Well, one of us can't be in this space......  I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity.(I can come back)


 I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity. 

I say the same about the male who thinks or believes "if I can't have her then no one can"....... I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity.

Stop demanding that women and girls change our lives to accommodate the thoughts and beliefs of males. 

 I have a right to privacy, safety, and dignity and this is nonnegotiable. 


Despite what ignorant people believe, women and girls are entitled to privacy and safety. 

The Numbers Do Not Lie, So Stop Asking Women to Accept Less Safety | WE Survive Abuse



For I Know

Since I was a child, I was fully aware that there were people who had weird and hateful ideas about me because of my color and or my sex.  

AND, since I was a child I was nurtured to believe that I am loved, adored, valued, worthy, unique, and special for those reasons and so many more.  

Like every other woman, I have a right to safety and protection from male violence no matter what a male thinks or believes yesterday, today, or tomorrow. 



Gaslighting and Red Flags: Black Women & Girls and Safety | WE Survive Abuse

1866 to 2020: Black women have always led the Sexual Assault Awareness movement - Equal Rights Advocates

The Stubborn American Habit of Obstructing Black Girlhood | WE Survive Abuse

At the Intersection of Surviving and Healing Racial Trauma | WE Survive Abuse

Joan Little: First Woman Acquitted of Murder for Defense Against Sexual Assault | WE Survive Abuse

The Historic Demand from White Women for Black Women's Labor: "Legalization" | WE Survive Abuse

Rachel Dolezal Might as Well Keep Standing in Her Truth | WE Survive Abuse

Where Are All the Feminists and Women's Rights Activists? | WE Survive Abuse

"R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Don't Disrespect Me Just Because We Disagree | WE Survive Abuse

Are You 'Tolerating' More Hate Than You Think? | WE Survive Abuse

Even In Social Justice Movements, Black Pain for White Gain | WE Survive Abuse

The End of Tolerating Anti-Female B.S. | WE Survive Abuse


Be Kind to Women and Girls (calendar) | WE Survive Abuse

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WE Survive Abuse : Your Ignorance Around Black Womanhood Shall NOT Make Work and Unsafe Conditions for Me
Your Ignorance Around Black Womanhood Shall NOT Make Work and Unsafe Conditions for Me
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