So… Wow. I’m still recovering.
Those of you who are regular to BGLH realize that yesterday’s comments clearly went unmoderated. That’s because I went AWOL. I was so disgusted by the comments on the Beyonce post that I literally turned off my computer and left my apartment.
I just couldn’t do it.
When Erykah Badu’s controversial “Window Seat” video was released, I quickly brought it to my readers because frankly, I think you’re intelligent and interesting and I wanted your opinion. I did the same for Wale’s “Pretty Girls” video, which I deemed controversial (and many of you respectfully disagreed with me on that.)
How naive was I to think I could do the same with Beyonce’s “Run the World” video? How naive was I to think that people would respectfully opine on whether the video was truly about female empowerment or simply an exploitation of female sexuality?
No, instead EVERYTHING AND THE KITCHEN SINK got dragged into this discussion. That Beyonce is an illuminati bitch, that she’s a copycat, that she’s really 37 years old, that my character should be questioned for daring to like the song and post it to BGLH.
Um, I DON’T apologize for liking the song. I DON’T apologize for posting the song. And I’m not invested enough in the concept of Beyonce to give a damn whether she’s a copycat or a Satanist or whatever the hell people are saying. (Like, seriously??)
But the vitriol is what was most troubling.
In one breath, we are disgusted by white supremacists, for taking to a natural hair page and spewing hate, or disgusted by Nicki Minaj for saying “nappy headed hos”. In the next breath we spew the same verbal violence, on a natural hair website no less. (Further evidence that some dead protein growing “naturally” out of one’s head is no evidence or judge of character.)
And, you know, I think it’s ironic that people complain when BGLH covers REAL negative things happening in culture (like the Psychology Today article, or John Mayer’s sexist/racist comments). You don’t want that in this space, you say, this is a positive space for “us sisters”, you say. Then, with your next key stroke, you degenerate what could have been a constructive conversation, with the same hate and vitriol you claim you come here to avoid. So I guess you don’t want to hear about other people dogging on black women, but it’s okay for us to dog on each other. Right, got it.
Actually, you know what, scratch that, it wasn’t the vitriol that was most troubling, it was the groupthink. The assumption that all naturals must hate Beyonce. That somehow in a top-secret-natural-code-book-of-what-is-okay it says, on page 1, “Thou shalt hate Beyonce.” What… the EFF?!
Not all of us are checking MediaTakeOut every day to figure out whether she’s in the Illuminati. Not all of us are cursing to high heaven because of “Beyonce saturation”. Not all of us are watching Rihanna’s every move, then watching to see if Beyonce will copy it. Some of us (including me) just don’t care that much!
I fancy BGLH a diverse space. This is clear in the style icons, the video content (Oh, and for the record, here’s a short list of other artists whose music I’ve posted; Lupe Fiasco, Theophilus London & Solange Knowles, Indigo Charlie, Michelle Shaprow, Wale, Blu, India Arie, Erykah Badu, Janelle Monae, Timothy Bloom), our natural bride features, and our naturals from around the world features.
I’m all for reader feedback, but for a while I’ve been bothered by people saying they want this space to be a utopia, and asserting what they believe a ‘natural hair utopia’ to be which, for many of you, includes no discussion of hard issues, no posts by black men, no lesbian couples, no interracial couples, no discussion of natural wigs/weaves and, apparently, no Beyonce. It seems we STILL haven’t grasped that black women are NOT monolithic. We don’t all like the same things and we don’t all hate the same things.
I am open to constructive criticism. I ALWAYS have been. But I will never accept “advice” from someone who is cursing anonymously in a comment box. That is cowardly and, in my opinion, doesn’t deserve my attention. If you really REALLY don’t like the content, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Otherwise, understand that childish behavior will be ignored.