Lisa Bonet & Biracial Women-Black Genetics(Part 4 of 4)

ca. 1988 --- Lisa Bonet --- Image by © Lance Staedler/CORBIS OUTLINE

The first time I saw actress Lisa Bonet was on The Cosby Show.  The main stars on the show were Bill Cosby and Phylicia Rashad.  The other daughters were played by actresses Tempestt Bledsoe,Keisha  Knight Pulliam and Sabrina Le Beauf. But Lisa was clearly the most popular daughter. Lisa  played Denise  Huxtable.The show came on back in 1984.  I remember a lot of black boys in my neighborhood had a crush on her.  I wont lie,I thought she was pretty too.  I remember a classmate telling me that she was biracial and had a Jewish mother.  I did think it was a bit strange that she looked biracial but had two black parents.   I remember on the Cosby Show there were all different shades of black people.  I also remember she did a spinoff show called A Different World.

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I remember that the character Dwayne Wayne,played by Kadeem Hardison had a huge crush on Denise Huxtable.  Eventually Lisa Bonet left the show to start a film career.  After she left Dwayne fell in love with Whitley Gilbert played by Jasmine Guy(pictured above).  The thing I noticed about these women is they are both biracial.  Why is the mixed woman the object of affection so often? I didn’t think about it much as a child.  But I started to think about it more as I got older. This is something that has been going on for quite some time.  I’ve covered this subject before and it needs repeating.  It’s not really about just Lisa Bonet. She’s just one of the first examples I remember where the mixed woman gets all the attention.  I’ve seen this pattern over thirty years.  And it’s steadily increasing.  But it’s mostly about the fact that Hollywood still uses biracial women has the standard for beautiful black women.  And also we as black people have a problem liking any group of people that look “less black”. This is a learned behavior. I’ve seen it in film,music and television. It’s really nothing new. I’ve seen it throughout my whole childhood.   You may find some of these women attractive.  But the issue is not their attractiveness. The issue is the over abundance of mixed women being in the forefront representing black beauty. There’s so many I could never list them all.  But here’s just a small sample of  some of the more popular ones.  And even some biracial women you may not be that familiar with.

sade

Long before Mariah Carey or Alicia Keys….Sade was the biracial songbird that took the music world by storm.  She was  a huge star in the 80’s.  I admit I like her music.  She really has a lovely voice.  I remember guys in my neighborhood would always say she was so beautiful. Her being biracial probably didn’t hurt too much either. They said she was wife material.  It’s funny because rarely did I hear them say that about Anita Baker,Patti LaBelle or Jody Watley very much.

rae-dawn-chong

In the 80’s biracial actress Rae Dawn Chong was the “black” actress in many Hollywood films.  Although she was mostly paired with white men.

jennifer-beals

Actress Jennifer Beals became a huge star when starred in the film Flashdance(1983).  She played an exotic dancer in the film.  Her mother is white and father is a black man.

vanity

In the action film Action Jackson(1988) the late pop singer Vanity played the love interest to Carl Weathers.  The biracial singer whose real name was Denise Matthews also dated pop/rock  icon Prince.

karyn-parsons

On the sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air(1990-1996)  biracial actress Karyn Parsons played Hilary Banks.  She played the cousin of Will Smith.

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In the interracial drama Jungle Fever(1991) biracial actress Lonette McKee played the wife of Wesley Snipes.  He cheated on his biracial wife for an Italian woman.  I guess his wife wasn’t white enough for him.

mo-money

In the film Mo Money(1992)  Damon Wayans starred with biracial actress Stacey Dash.

halle-berry

In Boomerang(1992) Eddie Murphy was paired with biracial actress Halle Berry.  Robin Givens was also in the film but Halle was the women every guy wanted. Of course Halle was the go-to mulatto throughout the nineties. And even won an Oscar award in the process.  She became the “pretty black woman” in Hollywood.

mariah-carey

Sade ruled the 80’s but in the 90’s Mariah Carey became the mulatto singer the media feel in love with.  I remember on music channels they would say she was a beautiful black woman. Mariah used to always insist that she was biracial though. Lately she has been getting more in touch with her black side.  Maybe it was because she married black actor/rapper Nick Cannon.  They have since divorced after having two children.

sister-sister

The sitcom Sister Sister(1994-1999) was a big hit among teenage girls.  It starred biracial sisters Tia and Tamera Mowry.

mya

R&B pop singer/dancer Mya was biracial as well.  She first came on the scene back in 1998. She did a little acting in a few films.  Some thought she would be the next Janet Jackson.  I haven’t heard much from her lately.  Not sure what she’s been up to.

kristen-wilson

In the 90’s biracial actress Kristen Wilson was paired with black actors like Eddie Murphy and Damon Wayans.

Gloria Reuben....

Biracial actress Gloria Reuben was on the hit drama ER(1994-2009)  Her character always had troubling finding love.

Michael Michele.....

I also remember actress Michael Michele(above) was  on the drama ER the same time as Gloria Reuben.  She was a nice addition since there wasn’t much “color” on that show.  Of course she’s biracial as well.

carmen-ejogo

What’s the Worst That could Happen(2001) Starred Martin Lawrence and biracial actress Carmen Ejogo.  She usually plays a black woman or a racially ambiguous role.

This is a great video(above) by Youtuber Chrissie.  She perfectly explains the double standard when it comes to biracial beauty.  There’s  a lot of dishonesty when people talk about colorism and the advantage of being biracial.

kandyse-mcclure

Biracial actress Kandyse McClure is from South Africa.  She has starred in films like Children of the Corn and Broken Kingdom.  She’s most known for the sci-fi television show Battlestar Galactica(2004-2009).

Amerie...

R&B singer Amerie debuted in 2002. There was a lot of buzz about her in the beginning.  Her “exotic looks” come from her black father and Korean mother.  Her only hit single was “One Thing”.  Some thought she would dethrone Beyoncé as the next big thing.  Didn’t quite happen though.

Cassie

R&B/pop singer Cassie Ventura(knows as Cassie) on the scene in 2006.  Her father is Filipino and mother is  black/Mexican.  She has done some acting as well.  She obviously wants to be a bigger star. Although she is most known for dating music producer Puff Daddy. She has been his on/off again side piece for the last few years.

In the black drama ATL(2006) biracial actress Lauren London was the love interest to rapper/actor T.I. This film was supposed to make London the role model for all the  biracial ghetto hood chicks.  I guess she’s living up to it.  She already has two children by two gangster rappers.  One with Lil Wayne and Nipsey Hussle.

paula-patton

In the film Idlewild(2006) biracial actress Paula Patton played the love interest to rapper/actor Andre Benjamin.  Over the years she has starred alongside Denzel Washington and Tom Cruise. At one point she was dubbed the “next Halle Berry”.

thandie-newton

In the comedy film Norbit(2007) biracial actress Thandie Newton was paired with Eddie Murphy.  Norbit was a horrible film.  A total waste of film!

Leona Lewis....

I remember when pop singer Leona Lewis dropped her debut cd Spirit in 2007. The British born singer has a black father and white mother.  She made a big splash in her debut.  She has the light skin,light eyes and long hair….and could actually sing. It’s no wonder music critics called her the “new Mariah”.

noemie-lenoir

In the comedy action film Rush Hour 3(2007) mixed-raced actress Noemie Lenoir was the love interest for Chris Tucker.

jordin-sparks

Singer Jordin Sparks won the show American Idol back in 2007.  The biracial singer was seventeen at the time.  I think that show is rigged anyway…I’m just saying.  She has become quite a big star over the last several years.

tracee-ellis-ross

Biracial actress Tracee Ellis Ross stars on the silly sitcom show Black-ish(2014-).  She plays the wife of Anthony Anderson.  Her mother is music icon Diana Ross.  Her father is a Jewish businessman.

CULT

On the Fox show Gotham(2014-)  biracial actress Jessica Lucas plays Tabitha Galavan. She is not only a vicious villain buy also plays a lesbian.  You know Hollywood always has to throw in that sexual confusion.

Sage Steele....

There are even more biracial women in news media as well.  This picture(above) is ESPN sports reporter Sage Steele with her white husband.  Steele is most known for being a white racist apologist. She never misses an opportunity to insult black people and the black struggle. Does that make her a mulatto coon?

Soledad OBrien....

This is biracial news anchor Soledad O’Brien.  She’s a news anchor on CNN. Just like Sage Steele she also married a white man. Look at those children. You can see the African features are just about gone!  Kiss those black genes goodbye!  But I guess that’s purpose of marrying white anyway.

Melissa Harris Perry...

This picture(above) is of biracial news anchor Melissa Harris-Perry.  She is pictured with her mother and father.  She is an author and political commentator. She had her own show for four years(2012-2016) on MSNBC. Unlike Sage Steele and Soledad O’Brien she decided to marry a black man.

Kylie Bunbury...

On the Fox show Pitch(2016-) biracial actress Kylie Bunbury plays Ginny Baker.  It’s a show about the first woman to play major league baseball.  So…they couldn’t find a woman that was just black??  Nope!  They have to cast the biracial woman as the center of attention.

Kara Royster....

This picture was very interesting to me.  I found it very eye opening.  This is part of the cast of the Disney show K.C. Undercover(2015-present). From left to right the actresses are Zendaya Coleman,Jasmine Guy,Kara Royster and Tammy Townsend. The first three women all have white mothers.  Townsend has a white father and a black mother.  That’s right..all of these women are biracial. How is that possible that ALL of them are biracial? They casted all biracial women.  Could this be an accident? I’ll let you decide.

BTS Miss Mulatto "No More Talking" photos by Thaddaeus McAdams for SoSoDef

This young lady is rapper Miss Mulatto.  That’s not a misprint,you read it right.  Her actual rape name is Miss Mulatto.  Her real name is Alyssa Stephens.  The 18- year old rapper is most known for being on the reality show The Rap Game.  I just find it interesting that she is capitalizing off of the popularity of being racially ambiguous. And using that as a way of being seen as unique in the rap world.

Tinashe...

Then we have pop singer Tinashe. She is biracial as well with a black father and white mother. She’s an okay dancer but not the best singer.  But you don’t have to be able to sing in the music industry anymore.  You just have to have the right “look”.  Maybe Tinashe will be the next Zendaya. Or the next Jordin Sparks? On the next Mya?  Who knows! I ‘m starting to get them all mixed up.

cynthia-robinson

Biracial actress Cynthia Addai-Robinson is getting a lot of roles lately.  She has appeared in films like Colombiana and The Accountant.  And shows like Texas Rising,Arrow and Shooter.

jamie-lee-kirchner

Actress Jamie Lee Kirchner(pictured above) was born in Germany.  She has a black mother and white father. She has been in shows like  CSI,Dollhouse and Bull.  Although she has brown skin she is still biracial.  Some people get fooled by this. Not all biracial women have really light skin and light colored eyes.  Some of a bit more melanin but they don’t always have African-textured hair.  Many of them have lanky hair with a bit of a curl to it. This is just a small sample of biracial actresses and singers.  I could’ve listed a lot more.

black-women

But the main point is that many of these white Hollywood casting agents don’t think that deep brown skinned and dark chocolate-colored(not biracial) women are good enough. They don’t have the “exotic look” they’re looking for. They don’t want African(Original)looking women with black features representing the black race.  And they purposely promote biracial women in films and music as the standard.  Otherwise why do they keep doing this?  People say “well black people  come in many different shades”.  Okay then why do the biracial women get so much of the attention.  We all know why. The truth is white people(other races and some blacks) believe that  mixed race women are more  attractive than black women.  They don’t think that black women that are 85% black or more should be the standard.  But this colorism madness needs to STOP!  There are plenty of darker skinned actresses and singers that don’t get the shine they deserve.  I want all my sisters to get the limelight.  She can have  full lips,thick thighs,african textured hair and dark skin.  This is not about bashing biracial woman. Like I have said before,I have biracial people in my family.  I have cousins that have married whites and Mexicans(Hispanic whites). I But I don’t consider them black..they are mixed.  This one-drop rule has gotten out of control. I don’t have any hatred towards them. I have nothing against them. But it’s time to stop putting black beauty on the back burner. Black/African women have their own unique beauty that should be celebrated. I just don’t think it’s “fair” to give them most of the shine while black women are an afterthought. Lisa Bonet is a pretty woman.  But a black woman shouldn’t have to look like Lisa to get some credit for her beauty.

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