Why #BlackGirlMagic Needs To Apply To All The Ones That Matter
Especially when Venus and Sloane are in the mix
This is an open letter to the outlets that are dedicated to uplifting the spirit of #BlackGirls or #Women who possess that potency of #Magic that can’t be denied — because — #goals.
The US Open is underway — and my day ended with a twenty-four-year-old champion — Sloane Stephens — who played the game of her life — to defeat the icon — whose name will go down in history — as one of the very best that ever did it.
No, it’s not Serena Williams.
She’s the easy embrace because her global exploits have positioned her as “the sister that matters.” Beyonce adores her — and so we must follow suit. She’s renowned for her remarkable serve and formidable build, which competitors have tried to admonish as freakish — but we know better.
However, Serena has an older sister. Her name is Venus.
According to Wikipedia — this is her legacy:
“She is generally regarded as one of the all-time greats of women’s tennis and, along with younger sister Serena Williams, is credited with ushering in a new era of power and athleticism on the women’s professional tennis tour.”
Venus is awesome. She has gracefully enjoyed the backlight in order to rightfully allow Serena the spotlight she organically initiates. Venus understands the power her younger sibling wields and makes absolutely no attempt to overthrow or challenge the relationship she protects like gold.
This level of loyalty is admirable, but it shouldn’t prevent a champ from being heralded for the titles won and lost or the probability of history — that hits the net with fury — when two Black women in heightened points of life — propel each delivery with the sweat of the masters that never escaped the ship of chains.
#BlackGirlMagic should really apply to all the ones that matter.
When the hashtag became code for instant applause for all the #Magic being displayed by #BlackGirls — who possess that “thing” — that keeps us ahead of the pack or at least on the path of imminent greatness — I assumed this was applicable to all the #BlackGirls that fall into the category of “dreams that have been realized.”
It seems my assumptions were premature.
It’s unfathomable to me that online publications like Essence, Ebony, HuffPost Black Voices and MadameNoire — failed to capture the incredible match that featured Venus Williams — a thirty-seven-year-old veteran who was aiming to secure her third Grand Slam title at #USOpen2017 — and Sloane Stephens — a gorgeous young blood who would probably be racking up the deals that crappy Maria Sharapova garnered — if only her deep-brown hue could be converted to White.
I wrote about why I was disdained by the lack of love being directed to a woman — whose itinerary of hits is staggering enough to give editors at Black woman outlets — the audacity to demand a Twitfest during the ushering of one of the most momentous season of a sport that used to belong to the privilege of White men.
According to fact checkers — this “was the first time in 36 years that all four women’s semifinalists at the US Open represented the host country.”
Three of those chosen for #Magic — are Black women.
Venus Williams — has a stellar itinerary that serves as ammunition for those of you that have decided to totally discard her — in favor of the more viable option — with the steel body and breezy lifestyle.
Serena is evidently more #magical.
In case you’re wondering — here’s why Venus is dope.
Sloane Stephens and Madison Keys are both young enough to comprehend how #Magical it is to share space with a legend like Venus — who has more than earned an honorary crown with the hashtag of her royal existence — bedazzled with respect and gratitude.
Venus has four Olympic gold medals under her belt. But no matter how much she accomplishes — she will always be pummeled by her younger sister’s mountain of achievements.
This handicap has steered towards gross negligence — from writers and editors — stationed at brands that swore to pay attention to the women of color who can perform miracles without breaking a sweat.
How is it that on a day with formidable tidings — there is a deafening tendency towards anything that bears no resemblance to the match of the century.
Bloggers can’t wait to park their thoughts on the roof of lesser significance. We know all we can’t retain about The Housewives of Atlanta or the deadbeat dads of Love & Hip Hop. And yet we are incapable of uplifting the brave — like America’s Got Talent contestant — Kechi Okwuchi — who didn’t permit her near-death experience — to engulf her fairytale ending.
I feel like shit, but I can’t hold back.
When it comes to the way we assign names to hashtags — there has to be a non-negotiable. Outlets that celebrate Black women — have to dutifully recognize why #Venus needed to be the hashtag of the night — even if they failed to light the fire.
We can’t have HuffPost Black Voices — remain silent with a pinned tweet that says this:
And yet — on a day that could’ve ushered a #MagicalBlackWoman — with everything to gain — after she garners “her third major final Grand Slam” — we see the notable tweet of the evening — and can’t come to terms with how a felon with weird as fuck eyes — won the night:
Essence talked about the Williams sister — on the night that was epically persuasive — for anyone with enough dare to witness a match between a legend and the one that was poised to replace her.
Like everyone else in the landscape of bots and no thoughts — Essence followed Ebony in the shadows of nonchalance — by ignoring the courts of appeal — and instead highlighting the only player that plays to win:
It’s time to step out of the darkness into the blackness of owning what’s Black when the women that sport the hue — show the indulgence of excellence on levels that warrant timeline takeovers.
It’s unsettling to be in a bar in the White part of town — rooting for the brilliance of women who look like you — and finding no solace in the outlets that promised to be the destination for #BlackGirlMagic.
When Venus Williams is on the verge of the Greatness that America manufactures — with the aid of defectors who are jealous of the weightiness of melanin — I expect the outlets that use the same symbols I distribute with pride — to step up for the impressionable #BlackGirls who are tracking every move.
This is worth calling out — because the metrics of ignoring solids for the loser’s game in the name of clicks — can’t interfere with the mission of giving a much-used hashtag — the vitality it deserves.
The match I witnessed that gave Venus the edge and then overturned to allot her honored nemesis the prize she aged for — was supposed to be scripted by all of us — with thorough allegiance to the significance of our women — dueling it out for the United States of America — a country that we might actually die for — by skin tone.
When Venus and Sloane are in the mix — we can’t afford to give Twitter Moments permission to ignore the trend of what we can accomplish — when the courts are stripped to the beats against the net — that once suffocated — but now yields to the serve — that those of us who Matter — are missing — under the guise of well-plastered felons and overly feted circles.
We need to do better by us and for us. #Magic can only work when the crowd is engaged.
So — Game, Set, Match!