Author Archives: tcrump3
In going to see the movie Think like a Man it had me thinking about a lot of stuff that we talked about in class. However, the first thing that came to mind is why during the movie it only shows black women who can not seem to get there men to act right? It shows a single mother, A woman who’s boyfriend does not want to commit to her, a woman who “gives it up to early”, and a strong corporate woman who can not seem to find a man that lives up to her standards. In the movie it shows these women desperately trying learn ways to find a man or to keep the ones they have. But it was very interesting to me that their were only two white males and one was happily married and the other one (who dated a black woman) had issues committing to her. This maybe a little left field but it made me think that this black woman who takes care of him is good enough to do his laundry but not good enough for him to commit to and also that only black people have issues when it comes to relationships and respecting one another. As for the strong black woman, it shows her lowering her standards even though she finds love, I am not sure how I feel about her having being classified as being a man herself therefore she doesn’t need one to be in a relationship with. That comment made me think of when we talked about the black woman already being liberated because she was classified as being “to strong”. Even though this movie made me question some stuff that was said all in all it was a good movie.
I recently just went to a program that was all about stereotypes and why a person stereotypes an individual before they get to know them. I found it very interesting that a lot of black people are always worried about being stereotype as being “thugs”, “hood rats” or “ratchet”. However we stereotype other races just as much and it was very interesting and surprising to hear from their point of view about the stereotypes that are attached to Asians, Hispanics, and Caucasians. The women of these other races also had a few words to say about how they are portrayed in the media as well and how the media seems to blur the lines of what is fact and what is fiction. It made me think that even though we all do not go through exactly the same situations, we are all still going after something similar…equality even though there are deeper obstacles that have to be faced for each race.
Some how when I go home for the weekend to work the people I seem to come in contact with seem to always make me think about our world and where we stand when it comes to different issues like racism and sexism. While at work over the weekend, I over heard a conversation among an African American guy and his Caucasian friend. They jokingly threw out slurs about being a “N’ word, being on food stamps, and other mammy jokes. They both seem to be oblivious to the power of these jokes but to me I was very offended. I don’t know if it was because of their age being that they were around eighteen that they didn’t realize the power that their words held or they just did not care. I then began to think when did it become okay for Caucasians to use the “N” word and tell these jokes and Black people being okay with it??
A world where a woman could be the president, the chancellor of UNCC, or even the student body president is how Dr. Anita Hill grabbed the audience attention. Hill discussed with us about how we as a people trained our mind to believe that men are the only ones that can have the power to make decisions. She had everyone on the edge of their seat with the statement of “ A world that is good for women is good for everyone.” Hill speaks about how things have changed since the hearing against the supreme court justice Thomas. Things that have been addressed were discrimination because of sex, race, and more equality within the workplace. She also gave us in sight to what gave her the courage and the motivation to go through this situation.
She also talks about how women are targeted for higher loans more specifically older women, which they referred to this as “granny haunting”. Dr. Hill also touched base on how women could possibly lose health care, she talks about a point in time where only male rats were used when it came to testing. Also how women and people of color were excluded when it came to the studies of health care.
Hill then tided these issues into the gender equality and economic prosperity. That then lead to the wage gap that still sets women back today. Going to this program made me realize that we have made great progress however, there still is more work to be done and we should push and push until gender equality is a part of everyone’s life. Hill also made that statement of either way it goes the economy will pay if there is no gender equality some way or another. That made me think maybe if we had gender equality the recession would go away.
Domestic violence! A disease that effects not only the abused but all that comes in contact with the situation. Rather it is physical abuse or emotional it leaves scars and images that all involved are haunted by. Growing up I have seen women in my family being abused most being my aunts. I have seen my mother take them in trying to help both them and my cousins escape the situation only to result in them going right back and enduring more pain. When reading black feminist thought and it discussed how “abused women, are often silenced by the image of the “superstrong” black women. I took that as a good number of abused women want to be that woman that has the capability to walk away from abuse but they feel powerless. And in being the “superstrong” woman would mean tearing their family apart and exposing herself to the criticism of others.
Domestic violence still goes on today and if this is what our black men today still feel they have to use in order to be a man; we have failed as a people to challenge what black masculinity means. They need to realize being a man it is not the ability to “own” or “control” women. However, not to forget the young ladies that we bring into this world, we need to mold their minds and show them what it means to love your self and how to view black femininity as well.
I work at a nursing home in my own home town and I had an incident at work a couple of weeks ago that stuck out to me. And ever since that incident I’ve continued thinking about this specific conversation, with a patient’s family member that rubbed me the wrong way. In that conversation the family member was a white lady who was upset about the amount of attention given to her father and was discussing the situation with me and another young African American female CNA, in what I felt was a very rude manner. Even though the situation was out of our control we as CNAs tend to receive a lot of the blame for what goes wrong. In the conversation the lady made a comment about how she wouldn’t be caught dead working as a CNA and that we should go back to school and get our degrees so we would not be stuck at this “low paying job.” Both me and the girl I work with, currently already attend colleges and even plan on going back to further our educations.
Very kindly, we both said that we are indeed in college and plan on continuing our education, she then asked us what community colleges we attended. And it was at that moment that I felt a little angry and walked away from the situation. I felt offended partly because I didn’t like that she believed that she could assume we were only able to finish high school and never decide to further our education. And too, that we needed her to “enlighten” us on how education was important. And she even furthered the disrespectful comments by assuming that we must attend community college. Did she feel that we were at the bottom of the hierarchy of health care jobs and somehow could not make it to a university? What some people do not recognize is that many people working as CNAs are actually in school to be nurses and other health care professionals. We are here by choice, not because we are without other options or void of education. We do it instead for the learning experience and the love and respect we have for the people we work with.
Today what I have issue with is what our people think it means to be black. A lot of people seem to hold black women to a lower standard because we of our race and gender. Society seems to view black women as being “ghetto” and barely educated. There’s also the stereotype of black women as being good only for having children and taking advantage of the government by being on welfare. However, I do not just point the finger at white people for creating this realm of bogus identity. Our young people seem to follow these stereotypes as if it is a guide for being black. I heard a young man say that if he was to use proper English and refuse not to dress like a “ thug” he was told he was trying to “act white” by his friends. It makes me sad to hear that our young people rather be comfortable at a lower standard than strive to do better. To me this is what gives white people the advantage, because they are keeping black people in a place of subservience by making them feel as though they have too much competition. To me this is psychologically demoralizing for our young people.
In a discussion I had with a group of guy friends we landed on the topic of what a perfect girl would look like to them. Majority of these guys seem to favor very fair and light skinned females “with long or curly hair”. This then had me wondering, how many of our black men see their counterparts as being beautiful? From what I see today black men look at dating other women of a different race as being “exotic”. I am not against dating outside of your race, for your heart sees no color. However I do not agree with discriminating against black women because of how they may appear. For some women they have been traumatically effected by this and it causes a strain between races and sometimes within the black race because some black women are lighter than others.
My biggest concern is that I do not want black women to feel as though they are less then great because a few men think this way. However, I do believe that our men should realize how much the black woman goes through daily with outside stereotypes, let alone prejudice within their own race. With realizing this they should show that “black is beautiful”, regardless of it’s shade, and not just give that phrase lip service with out action behind it. Every person has their own preference of what attracts them but do not set aside someone to make them feel as though they are at a disadvantage because they do not look like another group of females.
In another one of my women’s studies classes we had a discussion that was all about body image and how young women feel the need to mirror the body images seen in the media via super models and celebrities. However, I don’t quite agree with this idea when it comes to the majority of young black women and how they view their bodies. In my own experiences I’ve heard many young girls talk about how they look at music video girls and try to mirror their body type. But it makes me wonder, why it is that so many of them feel this way? I believe it’s because those women seem to receive all the desired attention from men, the money and the nice clothes which draws young teenage girls to their lifestyle. But it’s a trap that ultimately leads to low self-esteem, because it’s an impossible expectation that then makes these young women upset that they can‘t actually meet it. In reality, most of these “videos girls” either have been photo shopped to receive these perfect measurements of having a large chest, flat stomach, and large hips or they have had work done to receive this attention.
Regardless, I still realize that not all everyone can be generalized. Some of these women are blessed to have measurements close to what our African American media deems as “perfect“. Although, majority of black women do not, some women have big hips and small breast while others have large breast and small hips. A number of young teenage girls go to extreme lengths to get this body, because even our own black men discriminate against a woman if she is not shaped according to the socially constructed norm placed on us by society. I believe that all of this assists in lowering the self esteem of our black sisters because as I previously stated: it is rare that women actually have the perfect measurements to uphold this stigma that is placed on television.
African American women have made a lot of social progress in today’s culture from when they first arrived here in the US, but sadly there are still aspects of and opinions on their social stature that remain biased and narrow-minded. In deciding on a topic for this post I was inspired to talk specifically about the prejudiced notion that a particular way of dress for women elicits a certain kind of behavior from other people. That to wear clothes that can be characterized as “skimpy”, “tight”, or “provocative” means that it’s then okay that people are willing to put their hands on you or call you a derogatory name. I personally feel that regardless of any kind of clothes a woman, or anyone, wears in public, no one should feel like they have the right to disrespect them by inappropriately touching or speaking to them. Fashion is a social construct and varies greatly throughout the world. Where it’s customary in the Muslim faith for women to cover up their hair and even their face at times, women in some African cultures walk around in their everyday lives literally topless. Although, within the American culture, our women are conceptually “allowed” to wear whatever they believe best suits their bodies; we are still discriminated against, talked about, and even belittled solely based off of our attire.
As a personal example a friend of mine went to a night club on New Year’s wearing a mini skirt, along with a camisole, a blazer, and a pair of heels. She was appropriately clothed for the occasion. While standing at the bar she was approached by a young man who inappropriately groped her from behind. When she retaliated, he responded by saying “The way you’re dressed, you’re asking for it.” When my friend told me this, I became extremely livid and appalled at the idea that this man felt as though he had the right to lay his hands on a woman in such an inappropriate manner all due to her attire. I feel that women are judged off of what they wear but their clothes have nothing to do with their personality. Even if a man feels that a woman is revealing a little too much in whatever she has on, he is not entitled to use that as an excuse to downgrade her value or character. Black women, as well as all types of people, should not feel obligated to tailor themselves to all the social norms.