2017 Women’s March: Black Female Perspective

trump2

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?

trump1

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

Black NBA Stars speak out at Espy Awards

ESPN...

Athletes...

Ali...

Last night was the Espy Awards.  The Espys are an award show by ESPN.  They give out awards to the best athletes in baseball,basketball,football,tennis among other sports.  Well with all the police brutality,cop shootings,protests and racial unrest as of late….athletes chose to speak out.  At the beginning of the show Carmelo Anthony,Chris Paul,Dwayne Wade and Lebron James spoke out about political activism.  They brought up how atletes can be a voice to heal racial injustice.  Wade said that seeing no value in black life has to stop.  He also said that racial profiling and “shoot to kill” mentality has to stop.  They also went on to mention athletes like Jim Brown,Muhammad Ali,Arthur Ashe,Jackie Robinson who stood for something.  And that they we going to follow in their footsteps.  It must also be said that all four of these men are real friends off the court.  I wonder if they came up with this idea on their own.  Regardless,they made some good points although it wasn’t perfect.  The video is only 3:30 minutes long.  Watch it and tell me what you liked or didn’t like about it.  I’d like to hear your thoughts.

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.

Trayvon Martin verdict- July 13,2013(Somber Day)

Trayvon....jpg

It’s hard to believe but it’s been three years since that insane “not guilty” verdict in the Trayvon Martin case.  It was a very somber day for black people.  It proves that rarely can black people see any real justice in this racist country.

Trayvon3....

Zimmerman3...

George Zimmerman is a low life piece of garbage!  Nothing but racist scum!  This punk shouldn’t be able to walk around.  And I heard this little bitch even sold the gun he used to kill Trayvon.  WTF???  This country is insane!  No justice..JUST US!

Zimmerman2...

Trayvon4..

Rest in Power young brother and may your spirit live on.  We will never forget you or the fact that Amerikka didn’t bring you justice.  But justice…..is coming.

What’s worth more: Black life or Gorilla life?

Gorilla2...

Since his shooting at the Cincinnati Zoo on May 28, the death of Harambe, a seventeen-year-old male, western lowland silverback gorilla, has created a firestorm of controversy in contemporary “culture wars.”  There has been considerable second-guessing and “Monday morning quarterbacking” concerning the decision to shoot theanimal and, even worse, there has been unreasonable vilification of the parents of the four-year-old human, African American male, who found his way past a barricade and fell fifteen feet into a moat surrounding the zoo’s “Gorilla World” enclosure.

Reacting to the child in his enclosure, Harambe jumped into the moat and took the child under his control.  Although his treatment of the child may have been similar to the treatment given a baby gorilla, the force he used was excessive for the child.  Some surmise that the screams of concern from onlookers agitated Harambe, who began to handle the boy more roughly.  Whatever the cause, zoo officials determined that the gorilla’s state of agitation posed a threat to the life of the child and ordered Harambe to be shot.

Gor..

Zoo Director, Thane Maynard, stated that it was determined that the gorilla posed a threat to the child and that the only alternative was to kill him. Noted zoo keeper, Jack Hanna, agreed with Maynard who, after reflection, said he would make the same decision again if necessary.

In my mind, there is no greater value than a full and complete respect and appreciation for the sanctity and significance of life.  In the most ideal situation, every living being would be afforded the respect commonly given for her, his or its position in the ecosphere.  Unfortunately, this type of Utopia does not exist and we are often faced with making unpleasant decisions that are speculative, but have an immediate impact on life.

I have supported animal rights all of my life–but never at the expense of human life, and definitely not where a baby’s life was threatened.  I, like many others, initially had mixed emotions about the decision to kill Harambe, but I have trouble with the negative ‘fallout’ being rained upon the zoo because a gorilla was killed.  Instead, I applaud the fact that the baby’s life was saved.

Gorilla...

I condemn those who sanctimoniously argue for the protection of animals, yet ignore oppressive conditions imposed upon their human neighbors.  I wonder how many of those who protest Harambe’s ‘murder’ number among those who will walk down a street and give a stray animal the most pleasant greeting while casting the glaze of disdain upon another human because of race, ethnicity, religion or some other characteristic.

Some still argue that Harambe could have been tranquilized as an option. Why is that same option not called for when police shoot human beings without cause.  I missed 300,000 animal rights, or any other groups’, signatures for the deaths of Freddie Gray, Michael Brown, Trayvon Martin or for the deaths of the other young Black women and men who’ve died needlessly when an option truly was available.

Some will say that I have added an unreasonable “racial” component to this discussion, but, I ask, under the same circumstances, in what universe would white parents be vilified for not controlling their child?  Where would it be argued for a white mother to be criminally prosecuted?  Although he had turned his life around, when would a white father, who was not even at the zoo, have his entire criminal past made public (and how does it relate to the incident at hand)?

Where is the compassion for human life when the subject is Black?  I sadly conclude that our country is so filled with hate that one must pass a litmus test of whiteness for a life to matter.

Article by Dr. E. Faye Williams