Marie “Free” Wright(BET Hostess edition)

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Marie Antoinette Wright was born February 7,1975.  She is of African American descent. She is better known by her stage name “Free”. She began her journey in the arts as a child in Boston, MA. She attended the Roxbury Center for Performing Arts for 11 years and traveled and toured as part of a young dance troupe. Inspired by hometown group New Edition, she was part of a few groups in Boston performing and winning talent shows, while honing her singing and rap skills. One of her biggest breaks in her dancing career was performing in the 1991 rap music video “Good Vibrations” by Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch.

Free left Boston to immerse herself in her true passion: music. One of Free’s stepping-stones was an internship at a radio station in MA, where she began to make a name for herself. She then made career moves between LA and New York in an effort to build the structure of her calling. She appeared on “Patriots”, the second track on Can-I-Bus, the debut album from critically acclaimed rap artist Canibus. This appearance was her first major appearance and the album eventually went gold. Her appearance on the album was a direct result of her professional connection with Wyclef and his Refugee Camp crew.

“What influenced me to chase after my dreams was music itself; its power and creative medium.” Fate led her to a casting held by BET, where executives choose her to co-host their signature show based in NYC: “106 & Park Top 10 live”. During her 5 years at 106 & Park, Free interviewed notable people such as Michael Jackson, Denzel Washington, Aaliyah, Halle Berry, Maxwell, and Alicia Keys.

In 2003, Free began to record a full-lengthed debut studio album titled, Pressure Free, which was expected to be released in spring of 2008. Free went on to promote the album and release buzz singles via underground mixtapes from early 2003 to 2007. A buzz single, “Uh Huh”, featuring Busta Rhymes, leaked via the internet in hopes of regenerating buzz for the album. Contributors for the debut included Faith Evans, Bink, Scott Storch, Rockwilder, Kanye West, Just Blaze, Rah Digga, Timbaland and Missy Elliott. As of 2012, there is no confirmation if the album will be released.

On December 1, 2009, Clear Channel Radio New York’s Power 105.1 (WWPR-FM), R&B, Hip Hop and Back in the Day Joints, announced that Malikha Mallette will move to co-host “The Ed Lover Show,” 5:30-9:30am and DJ Envy is Power 105.1’s new afternoon personality, 2-6pm weekdays. The announcement was made by Cadillac Jack, Power 105.1’s Program Director. Free stated on her Twitter page “Ok that’s a Tuesday Morning for ya: As of now I will no longer be heard on Power105 in the am: NY thanks for the laughs..rock on!”

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In October 2010, Free returned to BET to produce and star in “106 & Park’s” two-episode anniversary show: “106 & Park: 10 Years & Counting” and “106 & Park: The Celebration, 10 Years Live!” Both shows earned the highest “106 & Park” ratings in BET history.

She can also be seen on BET again as a presenter at the inaugural Black Girls Rock! Awards on November 7, 2010.

On May 9, 2011, Free began co-hosting “The Big Tigger Morning Show” on Washington, DC area radio station WPGC 95.5 FM, alongside Darian “Big Tigger” Morgan, 6am-10am weekdays. In December 2011 when Big Tigger was fired, Free continued the radio show solo.

2017 Women’s March: Black Female Perspective

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Following Trump’s inauguration a series of Women’s Marches occurred throughout North America. The protests erupted to preserve the female liberties seemingly threatened by a “conservative” president who boasted of sexually assaulting women. As a female, I empathize and even support the initiatives that foment this March. However, although a woman, I know that I am inevitably black first. Thus, I can’t help but feel that by supporting the women’s march is to support the very means of my oppression.

On my a tri-weekly journey to a previous job, I recall seeing a number of protestors outside of Planned Parenthood at the wee hours of the morning seeking to shame female patrons. One protestor stood out from the others—an elderly white man surely north of seventy-five. He stood hunched over, holding an oaktag with a message written in ballpoint pen. I did not bother to read the poster, but judging by the stoic expression on his face, he was there to cast the stones of white male privilege onto the female body. Standing at the intersectionality of race and gender, the black woman knows this gaze all to well. While the literal gaze casts itself onto the black female body countless places throughout North America, the figurative gaze consumes black femininity in its entirety. The women’s march solely speaks to the “woman” component of this gaze, eliminating the most defining characteristic of black female identity.

Reproductive rights in general proves controversial to  the black female trajectory. A quick glance at history reveals that the black female endured sheer deprivation in terms of reproductive rights—her body used as means for mayoral economic franchisement. White women too encompassed an existence that also regarded them as property, however their fair skin warranted privileges denied to the black female body. These exclusive liberties afforded to white women illustrate the concept of “woman” as a privilege solely applicable to non-male whites. Consider the phrasing “black” woman. The label “Black woman” illustrates that black female intersectionality separates black females from the term’s initial meaning. For any “woman” of another marginalized faction, their race or ethnicity always precedes the term woman—proving their genitals deem them female but their race and ethnicity is first and foremost. Femininity is also a privilege extended exclusively to non-male whites. This exclusivity persists as the black female body only earns femininity when adopting western aesthetics and behavior.

Given the exclusivity of the term “woman,” I find it quite disturbing that white women ( and other oppressed groups) call on the black women for support in their times of distress, yet alienate the black female body when their children, brothers and fathers lay slain on the streets or untagged in the morgue. How many white women “said her name” after Sandra Bland was murdered? How many white women were overtly outraged after the Trayvon Martin verdict was rendered?

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To take a trip down memory lane, how many white female feminists supported Tawana Brawley in her 1988 trial? If autonomy over the female body is right every woman deserves- why was their no feminist congregation when this young, black girl was sexually assaulted by a number of white men? The answer is simple.  Issues that engage both blackness and femininity become “black” issues instantaneously. This fact reveals that feminism is simply not built to encompass intersectional identities and thereby is not equipped to extinguish black female disenfranchisement.

It seems that former President Barack Obama’s victory disgruntled feminists, who supported this victory as long as it was a symbol of the feminist victory to follow.  It seems feminists felt that history would repeat itself. Namely, black male voting privilege preceded white female voting liberties.  Thus, feminists deemed Clinton’s victory inevitable following Obama’s 2008 victory. Dr. Angela Davis expressed a similar sentiment in the following excerpt from her book Women, Race and Class,

“The representative women of the nation have done their uttermost for the last thirty years to secure freedom for the negro; and as long as he was lowest in the scale of being, we were willing to press his claims, but now, as the celestial gate to civil rights is sIowly moving on its hinges, it becomes a serious question whether we had better stand aside and see ‘Sambo’ walk into the kingdom first.” (Davis 70)

Now that it seems that the black collective has something that the white female collective does not, the bells of white privilege right loudly under the veil of feminism.

Feminism functions to afford white women the same liberties as white men. The main component of these liberties is racism—deeming black female participation in any feminist activity injurious. Thus, to participate in a woman’s march as a black woman is to   march along to the stagnant beat of white supremacy. For the black woman is a queen, but to the western world she will never truly be  a woman.

Article written by C.C. Saunders

23 Ways you can be Killed(Black Celebs speak out)

23 ways.....

I saw this video earlier today on YouTube.  It’s called 23 Ways you could be Killed being Black in America.  It’s from the organization We Are Here.  We are Here is singer Alicia Keys organization.

We are Here...

I’ve checked out her site.  It says on her website that their issues are equality,justice,women  and climate issues.  watching the video(above)  I liked the fact they brought up the murders of Sean Bell,Tamir Rice,Rekia Boyd,Eric Garner and Sandra Bland..among others.  Although I do find it interesting that the video was released on the third anniversary of the Trayvon Martin not guilty verdict.  I also found it interesting that Alicia Keys is the one heading this group fighting for equality for blacks.  Considering that just a few weeks ago Jesse Williams (another biracial) person speaking against police brutality.  I think it’s nice that Beyoncé,Chris Rock,Rihanna,Common and Taraji P Henson decided to speak out against these murders.  And of course they had to put white singers like Bono,Pink and Adam Levine in there as well.  That was just so the public doesn’t think this is some type of Black Power movement.  They always have to add a few whites in the mix.  But my major difference with these celebs is I don’t want equality with my oppressors.  I want freedom from oppression and real liberation.  Liberation is different than integration.  So do you think these black celebs are legit?  Do you think they really care?  Or is this just more racial propaganda?  Watch the video and let me know your thoughts.

Militant Mulattoes: Jesse Williams,Zaza Ali and J. Cole

Jesse Williams...

This past Sunday was the BET Awards.  It’s a celebration of black music,television and film.  I used to watch the award show years ago but it doesn’t hold my interest much anymore.  Mainly because the show promotes music that denigrates black women,colorism,negative images of black people and all around anti-blackness. But yesterday all over the news they were covering a speech given by biracial actor Jesse Williams.  He was given the Humanitarian Award and gave a passionate speech about racism ,oppression,police brutality and cultural appropriation.  That’s a lot to cover under four minutes.  Williams is an actor on the ABC drama Grey’s Anatomy. Some fear he may lose his job for speaking out on these issues.  I highly doubt he will lose his job. If anything he will be praised for speaking on these issues.  Here’s what he said:

This is for the real organizers all over the country, the activist, the civil rights attorneys, the struggling parents, the families, the teachers, the students that are realizing that a system built to divide and impoverish and destroy us cannot stand if we do. It’s kinda basic mathematics: the more we learn about who we are and how we got here the more we will mobilize.

“This award is also for the black women in particular who have spent their lives nurturing everyone before themselves – we can and will do better for you.

“Now, what we’ve been doing is looking at the data and we know that police somehow manage to de-escalate, disarm and not kill white people every day. So what’s going to happen is we’re going to have equal rights and justice in our own country or we will restructure their function and ours.

“I got more, y’all. Yesterday would have been young Tamir Rice’s 14th birthday so I don’t want to hear any more about how far we’ve come when paid public servants can pull a drive-by on a 12-year-old playing alone in a park in broad daylight, killing him on television, and then going home to make a sandwich.

“Tell Rekia Boyd how it’s so much better to live in 2012 than 1612 or 1712. Tell that to Eric Garner, Sandra Bland.

“The thing is though, all of us here are getting money, that alone isn’t going to stop this. Dedicating our lives to getting money just to give it right back to put someone’s brand on our body – when we spent centuries praying with brands on our bodies, and now we pray to get paid for brands on our bodies?

“There has been no war that we have not fought and died on the front lines of. There is no job we haven’t done, there is no tax they haven’t levied against us, and we have paid all of them.

“But freedom is always conditional here. ‘You’re free!’ they keeping telling us. ‘But she would be alive if she hadn’t acted so … free.’ Now, freedom is always coming in the hereafter, but the hereafter is a hustle: We want it now.

“Let’s get a couple of things straight. The burden of the brutalized is not to comfort the bystander – that’s not our job so let’s stop with all that. If you have a critique for our resistance then you’d better have an established record, a critique of our oppression.

“If you have no interest in equal rights for black people then do not make suggestions to those who do: sit down.

“We’ve been floating this country on credit for centuries, and we’re done watching and waiting while this invention called whiteness uses and abuses us, burying black people out of sight and out of mind while extracting our culture, our dollars, our entertainment like oil – black gold! – ghettoizing and demeaning our creations and stealing them, gentrifying our genius and then trying us on like costumes before discarding our bodies like rinds of strange fruit.

“Just because we’re magic doesn’t mean we’re not real.

“Thank you.”

It was a decent speech and he touched on a lot of issues.  But I noticed when they showed his parents in the audience I noticed his white mother.  I think this causes a lot of confusion for black people.  Can you be pro-black with a white parent? This is something I’ve noticed over the last few years.  There are many biracial people coming out speaking on the black struggle.  Many biracial people have gotten the spotlight in the entertainment and sports world.

Drake...

Canadian rapper Drake is one of the biggest rappers in the industry right now. This is his white mother,Sandi.

Alicia...

Grammy award winning singer/actress  Alicia Keys has spoken on issues that affect the black community.  Even though her mother Terria is a white woman.

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Rapper J. Cole gets a lot of praise for dropping socially conscious lyrics. This pic is of him and his mother Kay.

Bob Marley..

Some people tend to forget but legendary reggae singer Bob Marley sang about black unity and African people.  Even though he  had a white father.

Zaza...

On the black conscious circuit there is a biracial woman named Zaza Ali.  I first be familiar with her back in 2013.  She was doing a radio show with rapper Professor Griff.  She touched on issues such as black empowerment,religion,feminism,racism and politics.  She became quite popular in a short time.  Since then she and Griff have parted ways.  And she is now doing lectures and selling dvd’s and books.  I got the felling she was using Griff to get to the next level on the lecture circuit.  Also I think she knows that her light skin,white features and “good hair” will attract more attention then the darker skinned black women.  She is using the fact that many black people are self loathing and will fawn over her looks.  And she has become quite successful in the process. Many people believe she was a fraud from the beginning.  I also heard that she dated Griff and the broke up after she was down with him.  I can’t say I’m surprised at all.  Shame on Griff for falling for it.

In this video(above) Zaza is confronted by a caller on a radio show.  The caller asks her can she truly be against white supremacy if she has a white mother.  You will notice in the video that Zaza never answers the question.  I’m not really surprised at her response.  This also goes back to the Jesse Williams speech.  Can you really fight this racist system if your parent is white?  How can you give 100% against white racism if you came from a white vagina?  I don’t think it’s really possible. A mother is the first person a baby learns to love.  Your mother fed you and cared for you as a baby. Now you’re going to fight against the people who look just like her. NO way in Hell is that going to happen.  Black people need major systematic change for the empowerment of how our people.  And I just don’t think most biracial/mixed people are going to go all the way when the time comes. Also  Jesse Williams is working on a documentary about the Black Lives Matters movement. I have already covered how BLM is funded by rich white folks.  Any movement funded by your open enemy will not liberate you.  Always remember that.

https://kushiteprince.wordpress.com/2015/08/05/black-lives-matter-black-power-or-gay-rights-movement/

So while it was nice that Williams spoke out against white racism it is nothing new.  Marcus Garvey spoke about that decades ago.  Williams talked about police brutality.  Kwame Toure did that years ago. So let’s not act like Williams is the next Malcolm X.  He brought up issues that should be brought up but he said nothing new. It’s just that he was given a large platform to say it to millions of people so it’s getting a lot of hype.  You must also keep in mind that BET is owned by Viacom. The president is a white man named Philippe Dauman. This speech was planned in advance.  They already knew what he was going to say.  This was no surprise. They used this opportunity to stir up some controversy and get people talking.  And it worked.  Black people get excited when we hear some truth don’t we?  But I believe that hearing pro-black rhetoric is more palatable when coming from biracial people.  It’s more acceptable by whites when they hear it from them because they know they have a white parent.  So they don’t take it that seriously.  And many black people suffer from low self esteem so we like hearing this language from someone with light skin,straight hair and light colored eyes.  And Jesse knew what he was doing when he shouted out the black women.  Many black women in the audience were standing up clapping.  I’m sure many of them were fawning over his light skinned ambiguous looks. Much the same way Zaza Ali many times will come down hard on black women.  And she will talk about black men in a positive light.  And of course many black men in the conscious community fawn over her and call her a “real Black queen”.  Do you see the pattern?  I’m telling you,these biracial people know exactly what they’re doing.  I understand they can’t help their parent is a white person. They have no control over that.  But I just wonder why they are given a platform to speak so often on black issues.  They are not of majority African descent.  They maybe non-whte but that doesn’t automatically make them black either. So what do you think? Should they be given a platform to speak for us?  And also can they be genuine in the struggle…if they have a white parent?

https://blackmystory.wordpress.com/2016/06/29/what-the-jessie-williams-speech-at-the-bet-awards-tells-me/#comment-35102

 

 

Lupita Nyong’o vs Alicia Keys: Black Beauty Standard

Nyongo..

What is beauty? Many say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Therefore anyone can come up with their own definition of beauty.  I can agree with that to a certain extent. We all have our own personal like and dislikes.  But in a male dominated society the beauty of a woman is very important.  There are many good looking men in the world but it only carries you so far as a man.  But for women their beauty can open many doors for them.  A man is usually judged by his financial status.  It’s ultimately about what is his income and can he be a provider.  There are many women who have college degrees and make a lot of money nowadays.  But for the most part women are still judged by their beauty.  Their beauty is seen as social capital.  Not only is our society dominated by men…but also dominated by Europeans.  This makes things doubly hard for black/African women.  The woman in the picture above is actress Lupita Nyong’o.  Over the last few years she has taken Hollywood by storm. Lupita is an African woman.  She was born in Mexico and raised in Kenya.  She has been praised for her acting ability most notably the film 12 Years a Slave.  Which he won an Academy award for.  But she has also been praised for her beauty.  When I first saw her in an interview back in 2013 I thought she was a stunning beauty.  She had a beautiful smile,full lips and smooth dark chocolate skin. She has a very asymmetrical face. Her beauty seems almost otherworldly.  I was somewhat surprised that the media was giving her so much praise.  The white media rarely gives praise to a black woman with her skin tone and features. I haven’t seen this since maybe Lauryn Hill. Lauryn was a close second by the way.  I almost picked her for this post. But it was praise that was well deserved.  Although I find her gorgeous there are far more light skinned/biracial women that get more praise in the media.

Alicia..

Which brings me to singer/actress Alicia Keys.  Many black men I’ve talked to say that Alicia Keys is a beautiful woman. She’s not a bad looking woman at all.  But I’ve heard people say that she is a great representation of a beautiful black woman. This is a serious problem in the black community.  The problem is that Alicia Keys is biracial/mixed. She has a  white mother. The issue is really not about Alicia Keys.  I’m just using her as an example.  It’s more about what she represents. And I’ve heard other people say that actresses like Paula Patton,Halle Berry,Stacey Dash,Zendaya Coleman,Zoe Kravitz,Tracee Ellis Ross,Thandie Newton and Carmen Ejogo ..described as beautiful black women.  Even though they are all biracial women. This is the problem with the black beauty standard. And this is what needs to change. We have to be honest about this.

This video by Youtuber Chrissie explains the problem of biracial women getting so much shine.  Many of them get offended and upset when this reality is pointed out.  The reality is that a women like Alicia Keys should not be the representative of black beauty.  Every race and ethnic group has it’s own standard.  Whites have a standard and Asians have their standard.  When a woman is part Chinese and part African,the Chinese  do not accept that woman as their standard of beauty.  They will say she’s mixed race and in most cases most Asians don’t accept them as Asian at all.  So why is it so different with black people? Why do black people so willingly accept biracial women as OUR standard of beauty?

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As far as an African standard of beauty I would choose Lupita. Some of you may disagree with me.  I know there are thousands of African woman I could choose from.  I have featured many of them here on my blog.  But Lupita is an easy choice considering she is in the spotlight at the moment.  I think the one-drop rule has brainwashed millions of black people.  We think anything that is lighter skinned and light eyes is a better representation of blackness.  A watered down version is better than what we really look like.  There are millions of dark skinned and brown skinned black women who never make it big in the acting or modeling world.  And the few that do are not seen as “classic beauties”.  They are always seen as the “exotic other”.  Much the same way many whites in Hollywood look at Lupita.  But I really don’t care what racist whites think.  I’m more concerned about what we think and how we feel about each other.  We can no longer let the pseudoscience of the one drop rule over us anymore. We should be able to create our own standard of beauty.  We should not let another group of people dictate to us what should be considered attractive.

LupitaN..

It’s okay if people disagree with me.  But who would you choose?  Name three women you think would be a good representation of black beauty. They can be actresses,models,singers etc.  What is African beauty? What should black beauty look like? What women would represent it the best?

Biracial Women are the Most Beautiful(and other myths)

This is a video from the talk show The Real.  It’s a silly gabfest with five women as the hosts.  One Asian woman,a Hispanic and a biracial woman.  As well as an overweight dark skinned woman and a black woman with a bad weave.  In this video clip they interview biracial actress Grace Gealey. Gealey stars on the hit drama Empire. I’m sure you’ve heard of the show. The show that promotes homosexuality,colorism,lesbians,murder and black degradation.  Well anyway in this clip Gealey says that she is from the Cayman Islands.  She claims that in the islands they don’t really look at color.  They pay more attention to culture. Really??  I think she’s lying or incredibly naïve.  The system of white supremacy is a global system.  I find it hard to believe that color is not an issue in the Cayman Islands. The reality is she benefits from being biracial.  It’s one the main reasons  she probably got the part on Empire.  She benefits from not being “too black” so to speak.  She has that exotic look that many producers are looking for.  And she’s not the only one who is capitalizing off of the erasure of black women. It seems every time I turn on the television there seems to be a biracial/mixed race woman staring at me. I see them in commercials,sitcoms,reality shows and dramas. They are all over social media like Facebook,Instagram and Twitter.  Many are trying to be models or break into acting.   And many are becoming famous in the process. Of course they are everywhere because the media wants us to believe they are a better version of black people.  If they have light eyes,white features,light skin and long straight hair…they are deemed worthy of being called beautiful.  Yes there are some attractive biracial women.  I went to school with some in college and I have many co-workers that are biracial.  They have always been around me. Even as a kid in grade school.  Some of them got picked on by the black girls and I never understood it.  But as I got older it makes more sense.  The black girls never felt beautiful in a white racist society.  So I guess they saw the light skinned mixed girls with light eyes and long hair and felt jealous.  And I have heard many biracial women talk about people believing they are all conceited and vain.  Of course they are not all this way.  But I can see why many biracial women would believe they are the cream of the crop.  The white controlled media helps to push this myth.

The media reinforces the belief that they are better because they are usually not dark skinned and more African looking.  This video above hits on a great point about black women stepping up and not letting biracial women steal their shine.  I totally agree with her in the video.  I have seen some pretty biracial women but they are not any prettier than black women.  And many are playing in roles as the wives and girlfriends of black men.  Many times the fact that they are biracial is never even brought up at all.  Some of you may not be aware that  they are biracial. There’s been an abundance of them lately.

Tessa

In the film Creed,biracial actress Tessa Thompson played the girlfriend of Michael B. Jordan. Tessa also was in the horrible film Dear White People. That film could’ve been so much better.

Amber

Biracial actress Amber Stevens plays a girlfriend on the sitcom The Carmichael Show. In real life Amber is married to a white guy…but I digress.

Amandla

Teenage actress Amandla Stenberg is biracial.  She also recently came out as bisexual. Gay agenda being pushed?? You decide.

Westbrooks

BET is poison for black minds anyway. But they have a reality show called The Westbrooks.  It’s a reality show about a bunch of biracial Instagram “stars”. It follows them around during their daily lives. Yes…more mind pollution.

Yara

Teenage actress Yara Shahidi is half black and half Iranian.  She is on the buffoonish sitcom Blackish.

JurneeThis is a picture from the upcoming series Underground. It stars actress Jurnee Smollett Bell. She has a Jewish father and black mother. On a side note, aren’t you tired of the same old slave narrative? White Hollywood always has to remind us of our slave past.

Sharon

Actress Sharon Leal is half black and half Filipino. As you can see they are not always half black/half white. Sometimes they will be part Asian or Hispanic as well. But of course she always plays just a “black” woman.

Gugu

Actress Gugu Mbatha-Raw is half black/half white. She has become very popular the last few years.  She’s been on a lot of magazine covers. Some critics say she is the “new Halle Berry”.  Really??  Where is the new Cicely Tyson?  The new Angela Bassett? The new Lauryn Hill??  Hollywood isn’t looking for those type anymore. They don’t want too many dark skinned,full lipped,African textured haired women in Hollywood.  The dark skinned authentic African looking woman must be put in the back so that the mixed race/biracial woman can shine as her rightful replacement.  The biracial women are closer to white so they are looked at as a better representation of blackness.

"Eclipsed" Opening Night

Over the last couple of years more African looking women have been getting more press.  Most recently actresses like Lupita Nyongo and Danai Gurira(pictured above),Gabrielle Union,Viola Davis and Tika Sumpter have gotten more roles on television and film.  But there is still a large abundance of biracial/mixed women all over the media.  They are still usually the women seen as desirable in films.  And mostly play the wives and girlfriends to black men.  I think Hollywood is very afraid the dark skinned African looking woman.  They are doing their best to suppress her beauty.  They feel a woman  who actually looks like an authentic African is a threat to the European ideal beauty standard. This is what the racist white media really fear.  They want to see someone who is lighter skinned,light colored eyes and looks like they might have one white parent. This is why you see more women who look like Alicia Keys than Luptia Nyongo.  But the reality is we need more Lupita’s. I want black women to embrace their beauty.  And ignore the lies of the media.  You are beautiful without having to be watered down.  And you don’t need a weave or be mixed.  You are beautiful without any European additives. You are the Original Mother of the planet. You are the TRUE standard of beauty!  Do not let anyone tell you different.

Sista