Article originally featured on Superselected
Prom season is just around the corner. In the age of social media, that means feel good stories, viral dresses, and viral “promposals” — the more extravagant and/or offensive, the better.
For those of us who are several years removed from high school, watching a “promposal” take place is basically like witnessing a train wreck, especially when these public events get racist.
Last year, a viral promprosal, which involved a white student having her black male intended getting “arrested,” as a prank, sparked some heated debates. This time around, a handful of teens are ending up Internet famous with racially-charged prom asks that invoke the dreaded name of Donald Trump, among other ridiculous gags. But the particular “will you go” message that really struck me, involved a black teenage girl, a non-black boy, KFC crowns, and the phrase “dark meat.”
The minute I spotted the image — first on Twitter, and then later in an online forum — I knew what was coming. There would be reasonable, sympathetic comments from pretty much only black women. But, there would also be a barrage of messages blaming everything from feminism, to black feminism, to “swirl” sites, to weaves, to skin bleaching, to low self-esteem, and poor parenting. Basically this image was the fault of all black women. It was also the fault of a poor misguided young black girl whose self-esteem issues came seemingly out of nowhere.
Folks have also been sharing the link to her (now private) Instagram account, where the black teenage girl in question has been throwing out some pretty ridiculous arguments to defend the picture. I have a feeling that years from now, probably in her early to mid-twenties, she’ll look back on this situation and cringe — like a full body cringe. Until that day comes, she’s got a lot of learning to do, and mocking her probably isn’t going to teach her anything.
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