A short while ago, I was doing a google search of “why black women are single” just to get ideas on what to discuss in this post. You’ll be surprised to know (or maybe you won’t) what autofilled:
- why are black women so angry
- why are black women single
- why are black women so loud
- why are black women so rude
- why are black women so overweight
Seriously. I am not making this up. I could be wrong, but it was probably non-black women that searched using these criteria. I wonder if it was as a result of black women they personally know or if it’s just stereotypes they’ve seen of us in movies/television/media? Are these people who have never met a black woman before in their lives? Or are they surrounded by rude, loud, single, fat and angry black women? Inquiring minds want to know!
Needless to say, it disturbed me. Now, obviously, these search criterion are stereotypes and generalizations. While I am single, I certainly am not fat. I’m sure I’ve been rude before (and with good reason), but I don’t make it a habit to be. I am loud when I go to sports events or the like. But I am hardly all of these things at once. As a matter of fact, my family and friends would tell you that I could be quite introverted and shy.
I’m going to guess that the people who searched these criteria probably watch too much tv. The below video clip from the movie “Soul Plane” is perhaps an example of loud/rude/fat/single/angry black women:
Now don’t get me wrong: I love comedies. I love black films, and I love Monique. She is a beautiful, talented and plus-size actress that has broken some barriers against black women in Hollywood. But I find it incredibly regrettable that we are being portrayed this way (on top of the gratuitous use of the word “nigga”). I think whoever wrote, produced, directed, and acted in “Soul Plane” should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. But I won’t get into the problems I have with the film as a whole (and there are many!)… I’ll just discuss how many things are so very wrong with just this one scene:
- these women are obnoxious (loud singing, dancing, swearing, laughing and overall unprofessional behavior in a professional work environment)
- they are both plus-size
- the constant use of the word “nigga” period, and in front of people of other races
- their disrespect and demoralizing criticism of the young black man that they are screening (which I believe is another way that Hollywood drives an even bigger wedge between black men and women)
This is so sad and wrong on so many levels. What do you think people who have never met black women (or black people for that matter) think when they see these types of films? Thankfully films brought to the public by writers like Tyler Perry has helped to diminish this damaging portrayal of black women, but in most people’s mind and subconscious, the damage has already been done and their minds have been made up about what to expect from black women.
But how can this be reversed? In our everyday lives, we can disprove to the world that we are all not as the media and Hollywood portrays us. We will continue to be the hardworking, loving, passionate women we are by nature and slowly this will help to eradicate these rottenness stereotypes.
Ok, I’m off my soapbox about this for now. What are your thoughts? I’m sure you all have something to say!