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Facepalm Friday April 2, 2010

Posted by Skippy in Black folks, Culture.
Tags: , , ,

I have decided to initiate what I am calling “Facepalm Friday,” wherein I blog (translation: rant) about something so mind-numbingly stupid, so ass-backwards and idiotic at every conceivable level, that it must be rewarded with the Picard Facepalm. It was going to be the Catholic Church and their…responses to the bajillion and twelve revelations that more than a couple of their priests have sexually abused children. I mean, when you’ve got Bill Donohue defending you, you have to know you’re doing something wrong, right?

Fig. 1 Ten pounds of crazy in a five pound sack

But no, there was something else I found on the internetz that caught my attention and demanded that it be awarded the First Weekly Captain Jean-Luc Picard Facepalm.

Fig. 2 Black women, PANIC!!

Way to get on top of a bunch of fearmongering nonsense, ABC! Yes, let’s talk to Steve Harvey about Black male-female relationships. He’s clearly a relationship expert, right? Got psychology degrees and has a practice counseling couples, too! Oh, wait. He doesn’t. He “wrote” a book and has been on the radio dispensing his Tyler Perry-ish “advice” about Black love.

Oh, but it gets worse. There’s a whole panel of morons, none of whom are qualified to say jack shit about relationships outside their own:

Fig. 3 If you take advice from any of the above idiots, you should be single. Forever.

What I want to know is this: why the hell are we still having this conversation? We were having these same stupid “What’s the 411 on Black Male/Female Relationships?” bull sessions twenty years ago when I was in college! Even then, all I heard was, “All the good Black men are either dead, on drugs, in jail, or gay!” An entire cottage industry sprang up in Black culture around the elusive Good Black Man. And every moron had an angle. Blame the mother, blame the apparently absent father, blame the White man (a favorite, and so easy to do!), blame capitalism, blame rap music…sometimes, blame all of the above. Furthermore, why are we acting as though Black women are the only people having a hard time finding a partner? Hello, have you seen Sex and the City? Single educated White women aren’t exactly getting married by the bushel, you know.

But no, according to ABC “News,” which is co-signing this festival of bullshit, there’s apparently someone we need to “blame.” But who? Who do we blame for all those loose, single educated Black women? Black men? Black women? Ah, hell; let’s go and blame everyone! I’m sure Black gay men will get some blame thrown our way too. Cause we’re all on the down low, you know?

And that’s another damn thing: this production just reeks of heterosexism and patriarchy. “Are black women’s expectations too high?” Really? Some intern had clearance to put that nonsense up on ABC’s website? I for one would hope that Black women would have high expectations!

Fig. 4 If her expectations had been higher, maybe she wouldn’t have been high all the time.

When are we going to stop falling for these same tired narratives that constantly present Black life as deficient? When are we going to stop lining the pockets of misery pimps who exist only to tell us that we’re “missing” something, and that they somehow have a frakkin’ gnosis that we too can have–if we line up like a bunch of lobotomized sheep and listen to them? We fell for that crap with CNN’s “Black In America,” we fall for it every time Michael Baisden or Tavis Smiley or fill-in-the-blank megachurch pastor opens his mouth. When are we going to stop treating ourselves like we’re a pathology?

So. ABC News and everyone associated with this latest round of pathologizing Black folks, you are awarded my first ever Captain Jean-Luc Picard Facepalm:



1. Meredith - April 2, 2010

First of all, I just want to say that I love the fact that one of your tags is “hot ass mess”.

Second, you are absolutely right about this, Roger. Speaking from my own perspective an an educated white woman, who was told, at varying points during my singleness, that 1) my expectations were too high; 2) I knew too much about sports (I’m not even kidding about that one); 3) I was too independent; 4) I should hide the fact that I have a Ph.D., I’d just like to say everyone has a hard time finding a good person to date. It’s not about Black women/White women/Latina women/Asian women. It’s difficult to meet a person you connect with. And frankly, I’d rather be alone than married to Tiger Woods or Jesse James, so I think all of our standards should be a little higher. The attitude that there is some disease that needs to be cured if you aren’t married is one factor that leads the ridiculous divorce rate in this country.

On another note, I can’t tell you how happy I am that you now have a blog. It’s on my google reader feed.

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