Why I am Tired of White Women Getting Validated At The Expense of Black Women
In light of the #MeToo and Time’s Up movements — the revelations of abuse and the exposure of victims — particularly the ones embedded in the industry that birthed their dreams have descended on us with the violence of an activated avalanche.
Actress Rose McGowan’s assertively graphic confessions were released with furious range that never found a tempo that could sync with the various battalions. The depth of her pain can’t be disputed — neither can the fact that she’s been at this for quite some time — long before tweets had the power to banish evil people to a place far, far away. But her celebrity has gotten in the way and now we witness the dire consequences of a Hollywood ending.
For White women — the privilege assigned provides quick fixes — very quickly.
Your trials and tribulations become everyone’s palaver as we join the chorus and sing highly for your rapid recovery. If you spent years under the burden of powerful men who were paid to get wealthy off your backs — then the only thing to do is to reward you with your very own TV show — where you can appropriately heal your wounds with the aid of bright lights and episodic reels.
You have the army of your counterparts — tweeting and retweeting gems on your behalf and in defiance of the awfulness that befell you — when you were young and innocent and forced to contend with an environment that sprouts out prototypes to match the unrelenting demand for what has always been regarded as the default for perfection.
No matter the unfairness of the situation — White women always win the game of recognition — even when the victory is blatant thievery.
Imagine how Greta Gerwig manages to beat out the more experienced Dee Rees with the honor of being celebrated as a first time director of a film that is up for the highest prize in the land. The industry can’t resist the charm of a movie that was made by a White woman about a White girl and her whimsical journey to White womanhood.
It’s just one of those things.
And even though those of us who were rooting for Rees and her gorgeously evoking offering about racial tension in rural Mississippi — are already used to witnessing the systematic mistreatment of our own for the glory of upholding the worth of our White counterparts — it gets exhausting racking up all the fucked up shit that happens without shame.
As we accommodate McGowan’s unsurprising public breakdown and the latest essay in the illustrious New York Times — that details yet another harrowing tale of survival — amidst the vultures that tried but failed to completely devour another esteemed White actress — who has spent decades under the tutelage of her enviable viability — the outpouring of love, encouragement and sisterly advances are touching — but unfortunately — the bitterness in my heart makes it hard for total commitment.
It’s not that I don’t care or even feel the level of empathy that is supposed to organically overwhelm as you take in the countless testimonies and watch the movements — move into warrior mode on behalf of the outed newbies. It’s really the feeling you get when go out of your way to show up for an event — and realize after you arrive — that all that effort was for naught — based on the lukewarm reception.
Earlier today — I tweeted this:
This pretty much sums up why I’m tired of White women getting validated for their pain — at the expense of Black women who lived and died by the fucking sword.
Town criers like Jessica Chastain, Reese Witherspoon, Alyssa Milano, Amber Tamblyn etc have every right to declare war on anyone that threatens the disposition of their own — but let’s not pretend that this ability to stand up against injustice is a consistent thread across the board.
If there is anything I can take away from these moments it’s the fact that White women do have the fury and might to cry foul when it’s necessary — and this only happens when they’re territory is being attacked.
They have no qualms staying silent when a young Black woman ends up dead after being invaded in her own home by an army of men in uniform — who shoot her to death in front of her children with such gusto that the bullets injure her son. Only Black women were appalled and horrified when another young Black woman ended up dead in her cell — after being violently handled by a state trooper on her way to work — three days prior. No White actress or notable cared about the sheer terror of another Black woman who watched her boyfriend breathe his last breath after a cop shot into their car — with her toddler daughter lodged in the back seat.
There are plenty more to account — but the relevance of pointing this out lies in the irritation of watching how we rally to the fragility of White women with national permission and yet Black women never manage to incite that level of consideration or even recognition.
I don’t recall Black men littering their timelines with tweets or posts that questioned how Diamond Reynolds and her daughter will be able to live another day without nightmares — after the horror show they endured. Instead Reynolds was mocked for being uncannily stoic — as if her temperament was a damning sign of her unfortunate destiny.
Sharing this frustration isn’t supposed to be a comparison chart — that illustrates which pain is the greatest or whether or not being harassed can compete in the realm of Hollywood royalty versus those who aren’t in any position to even admit the reality of daily imprisonment.
It’s just a reminder that being a Black woman demands a lot more than we should be able to give — but that never prevents us from doing the work for little or no appreciation.
Until Black women are able to enjoy the benefits of being cared for in ways that match what their White counterparts are blissfully accustomed to — there will always be the urgent need to dish out the reminders of those who keep exiting this earth — with no ceremony.