Click on this link and read this story in Essence based on a news report from CNN and Anderson Cooper.
Synopsis: The children were asked to take a doll test much like the one in the 40’s to see if the color perception has improved or gotten worse. Well the results were astonishing!
Skin Color is still an issue amongst the black community as well as the world community. The same issues exist in India. If you are fair-skinned you are preferred for marriage proposals. I have newspaper clips that ask for fair skin. I wonder if the British influence has anything to do with that… (good topic for a research paper)
I was speaking to my good friend about this once and he said that he hates it when people say “she looks good to be dark skinned” or when people automatically think that someone is pretty because their skin is lighter. Dark skinned people are pretty too. We are all unique and special in our own ways and it is time that we learn to appreciate that. My friend Candace and I are on opposite poles as far as skin color, but one is no better than the other. Sometimes we joke around when we try on wigs. I’m always Kelly and she is Beyoncé. This is solely based on skin color because I am the singer… so I am guilty too…
When I was growing up, girls were considered pretty if they were light-skinned with long hair. If you were brown-skinned or darker, you were just cute or okay. (How many people remember slam books?).
I question if we, as an African-American community, are perpetuating our own problem. What do we support and/or push forward in advertising, music, and entertainment? How many darker skinned entertainers do we have? Is Kelly less talented than Beyoncé or is it that Beyoncé is lighter skinned and has longer lace front wigs? Beyoncé is working her space, so no disrespect intended. India Arie is working her space too, but isn’t considered main stream. Could her skin and hair be a factor? Is she not considered pretty enough?
Does black still mean evil by definition? I pulled the first 7 definitions (adjectives) from www.dictionary.com. Here are the results
- Without any moral quality or goodness; evil; wicked:
- Lacking hue and brightness; absorbing light without reflecting any of the rays composing it characterized by absence of light; enveloped in darkness
- A. pertaining or belonging to any of the various populations characterized by dark skin pigmentation, specifically the dark-skinned peoples of Africa, Oceania, and Australia.
- Soiled or stained with dirt: That shirt was black within an hour.
- Gloomy; pessimistic; dismal: a black outlook.
- Deliberately; harmful; inexcusable: a black lie.
- Boding ill; sullen or hostile; threatening: black words; black looks.
The good guys never wore black. If you wear black too much most people will begin to question your emotional state. The kids that wore black to school were considered “grungy” or “weird”.
Does white mean good? Here are the results from www.dictionary.com
- of the color of pure snow, of the margins of this page, etc.; reflecting nearly all the rays of sunlight or a similar light.
- light or comparatively light in color.
- (of human beings) marked by slight pigmentation of the skin, as of many Caucasoids.
- for, limited to, or predominantly made up of persons whose racial heritage is Caucasian: a white club; a white neighborhood.
- lacking color; transparent.
- Slang. decent, honorable, or dependable: That’s very white of you.
- auspicious or fortunate.
- morally pure; innocent.
- without malice; harmless: white magic.
My name, Bianca, by definition means “white” and I am an African-American female. How contradictory! I’ve had people tell me that I am the “whitest black girl” they know. I’ve learned to love the skin I am in and learn how to play in more than one sand box. I enjoyed making mud pies in the back yard as a child and playing in the sand at the play ground. I had white Barbie dolls and black Barbie dolls. I read “black” magazines and “white” magazines. I went to a public university. I’ve been to different countries, experienced different cultures, and have had opportunities not afforded to most. I am still a Black American Woman or an African American Woman. God made me this way. I love him for it.
I appreciate India Arie’s song “I am not my hair” and Chris Rock’s educational documentary, “Good Hair”. They make you stop and think, what is wrong with my natural hair grade? Why am I addicted to the “creamy crack” that we so lovingly call a relaxer? Paul Mooney said when you relax your hair, white people are relaxed… Is that true? Most “black” hair care companies are no longer owned or operated by black people. Take a look at the advertising.
I appreciate Tyler Perry employing actors of all shapes and sizes in his plays, sitcoms and on the silver screen.
Proctor & Gamble, now is the time to push the “MY BLACK is Beautiful” campaign. Push it on main stream television. Not just on BET, Centric, and TV1 because not all black people watch those stations. Some don’t even have cable or satellite. Please spend the advertising dollars and put black people of all shapes, sizes, and hair textures out there for the world to see. For more info on the campaign, click on www.myblackisbeautiful.com.