Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Newsweek's Allison Samuels Is Clearly Out Of Ideas And Should Worry About Her Own Black Hair Instead Of The Hairstyle Of A Defenseless Four-Year Old

This bullshitting article by Allison Samuels is the perverbal straw that broke the camel's back for me. I have had about a damn 'nough on this here subject.

I'm sorry, but I am sick and tired of being sick and tired of the issue of black women and girls and their damn hair. It's time for everyone to start minding their own FUCKING business about black hair. I am completely soured on the subject. I am sick of the politics of black hair, the in-fighting over black hair, the judgements about black hair, and I am DAMN sick and tired of black women and girls being made to feel bad about their hair.

How about this -

If you are HAPPY and NAPPY, cool with me. If you are BONE STRAIGHT and SLICK, cool with me. If you rock POUNDS and POUNDS of WEAVE, cool with me. If you had HALF YOUR HEAD SHAVED AND THE OTHER HALF LONG AND LOVELY, cool with me. If you are CUT DOWN TO THE SCALP WITH YOUR MAN'S NAME SHAVED ON THE SIDE, cool with me. If you are a NATTY DREAD HEAD, cool with me.

If a some point and time you have had HAIR COLORED MAGENTA, BLONDE, BLUE, GREEN, OR PINK, cool with me. If you enjoy wearing BRAIDS SO LONG THAT THEY DRAG ON THE FLOOR WITH 8 MILLION MUTLI-COLORED BEADS, cool with me. If have a MOHAWK OR A FAUX-HAWK OR WHAT EVER IN HELL THEY CALL IT HAWK, cool with me. And if you are like me with so-called "GOOD HAIR" YOU HAVE NO DESIRE TO COMB OR STYLE ON A REGULAR BASIS, you are double-dip pistachio nut ice cream cool with me.

I am a sick and tired of folks talking about black hair like it's the ONE great problem in our black society. Get a clue people, IT ISN'T!!! A whole lot of black women with straight and nappy hair, "acceptable" and completely jacked up hairstyles, have voted in a black man as President, ran households and business, and yes, managed to think and chew gum at the same time! We need to stop buying into this tired and circular firing squad discussion any longer and I mean IMMEDIATELY.

Can we agree on something?



msladydeborah October 14, 2009 at 6:44 PM  

I have to agree about the hair discussion. It is a tired topic and one that never seems to be resolved among us.

I feel that if you're happy with your hair and it is healthy-you should be thrilled. There are a whole lot of sistas who have experienced hair loss.

the life and times of peachesC October 14, 2009 at 7:01 PM  

i normally luck but i could not agree with you more. i wear my hair in a weave. not to look like a yt girl or live up to the "ideal beauty standard" cause im far from it. but it is so i dont have to put in a whole bunch of chemicals in my hair. there are a helluva lot of other things to worry about besides hair

CurvyGurl ♥ October 14, 2009 at 8:30 PM  

Yup! I figure if you want hair and have's good hair. I've wanted to write a post on this but get frustrated at the too, I'm tired of the nonsense.

Black British Girl October 15, 2009 at 4:28 AM  

i made a post about why i am tired about the politcs about our hair it pisses me off to the fullest extent there are more bigger problems facing black people then the hair on our heads Jesus tap dancing christ

The New Black Woman October 15, 2009 at 9:16 AM  

I'm so glad you posted this. I am, too, sick of people analyzing, dissecting and discussing black hair.

It's no one's business what someone else does with their hair. It's on their heads, so let them deal with their "hair issues."

The black community has bigger and more pressing issues to worry about than whether or not Angelina Jolie is combing her child's hair.

givepeace05401 October 15, 2009 at 10:48 AM  

Movies, magazine and newspaper articles and many, many blogs on the subject of Black hair, whats next a song and dance?

The question I have is why the great interest in this topic? Why would Newsweek pay someone to write such a dumb article?

The articles on skin tone, lip size and the fear of the Black booty should be a woot.

DJ Black Adam October 15, 2009 at 11:27 AM  

Not to piss you off any further, but I have to disagree. I don't think this subject has been seriously addressed, as with the greater subject of Black self hate and further Black peoples acceptance of a White supremacist worldview in our (MALE AND FEMALE) desire to strive to achieve a Eurocentric beauty standard and our worship of such imagery.

TRUE: Hair is not the sole indicator of self hate, however; it is a factor though. Sure, there are some conscious brothers and sisters who have gherri curls still. BUT, I would say MALE or FEMALE any person who has a problem with their hair in its NATURAL state, might have an issue of self hate or of low self esteem (regardless of ethnicity). Brothers ... Read More who have to have a woman with "the GOOD" hair or sisters who always strive to achieve the "GOOD" hair, in my opinion BOTH have color issues. It's not about length or styling its about mind set.

For example, remember when Serena Williams would wear that inane blonde wig / weave? No one said much. Now if Anna Kournikova broke out an Nappy Afro wig, people would flip out. The problem with Black people and many non Europeans is their worship of the European standard of beauty.

DJ Black Adam October 15, 2009 at 11:52 AM  

GravesBTW I am not inferring, implying and / or expressing that natural hair means one is conscious. Esepcially as natural hairtyles seem to be a trend for people who are spiritually and culturally dead.

Professor Tracey October 15, 2009 at 1:20 PM  

@DJ Black Adam,

I'm sorry but the "self-hate" argument does not work for me anymore. People have the right to wear their hair anyway they wish. We need to stop creating rules and standards for black people that no other racial group has.

Asian women dye their hair, get perms for frizzy and curly locks, and get plastic surgery to change the shape of their eyes, no one accuses them of self-hate. Latino women do the same, as well as white women.

Why do black women have to uphold some Afrocentric standard of beauty? A concept that most black folks could never exactly agree upon what that is. Black people do have straight hair and curly hair, not every single black person in the world has nappy hair. Let's stop acting like we are all the same.

What exactly would be the SERIOUS discussion? That all black people show wear their hair one particular way? I'm not going to have an afro, no matter how hard I tired. I don't want dredlocs at this point in time in my life. If I don't wear my hair in a "black style" - I'm not conscious?

I've met plenty of natural style folks yelling about being conscious and sounding like damn idiots. And why can't the reverse be true - folks who worry about other's hair, may have some serious issues of their own.

And Anna Kournikova is rich and white. She's free to do what she pleases. Yeah, people would flip out if she wore and afro wig, but it wouldn't stop her from rocking it. Why can't Serena Williams who is black and rich, do the same?

DJ Black Adam October 15, 2009 at 2:24 PM  

Well Tracey, we are going to have to agree to disagree with this one. This is why I have not written about my observations on this issue, It is just like the whole issue with skin color within the African American community. I will add this: How African Americans wear their hair does not indicate their mindset, but how African Americans (MALE and FEMALE) react to people who do wear their hair natural, especially how they react to Black Women who dare to wear their hair natural, generally IS an indicator of their self hate mindset, that I have gathered from my observations.

Jazine October 15, 2009 at 2:39 PM  

I agree, Prof. Tracey. This issue is like beating a dead horse. I'm tired of black people policing other blacks and their beauty practices. If you relax your hair you suffer from self-hatred, if you're natural you must be an unkempt, black revolutionary. Enough!

DJ Black Adam October 15, 2009 at 6:07 PM  

BTW Prof, I never said people who don't have natural hair are not conscious. BUT being real, you know as well as I do that "good" hari in our community means STRAIGHT, and goes hand in hand with light "skinded-ed". I know you are not seriously acting as this mindset hasn't existed since slavery?

Yep, I know Black folks come with naturally straigh and naturally curly hair, etc., etc., however; you know as well as I do that our community strives for that which is MORE like White Europeans and LESS like Black Africans.

It is an unfortunate actuality, but an actuailty none the less, nobody is making this up, and it is unfortunate that people, Black people act oblvious to it, it is self delusion.

Professor Tracey October 16, 2009 at 1:04 AM  

@DJ Black Adam,

We can agree to disagree, but I think you're making this argument much to simple. I'm not a black African either, so why I am expected to be connected to that standard of beauty either?

And in my personal view since black women have been burdened with carrying the brunt of this debate, I believe we have the right to dictate the conversation.

And the slavery example is a poor one. RAPE caused differences in black folks and the celebration of those offspring that resulted from those assaults were set by whites, not blacks. Now if we want to discuss the unhealed wounds of slavery that's different, but somehow I doubt that's the discussion we want to have.

And we need to be careful, if we want to blame the past for things we do now, then black women have good reason to be angry and disappointed with black men. Centuries of failed protection and failed leadership, but should we really hold black men responsible for a situation they could not control in reality?

Are black men's failures today in education, the workplace, obeying the law, killing each other, etc...., is that self hate? We love this tired discussion about hair and skin color because it keeps up from getting at the real issues we have.

lena October 16, 2009 at 4:41 AM  

@Prof Tracey:

Yours is the BEST, most sensible opinion on the topic of black hair I've heard to date.

I, too, let myself get sucked into the stupid and inane argument about black women and our hair (particularly on another blog) and how we like to wear it.

It's ridiculous and we do need to end such discussions. You are so right - other women wear chemicals, hair dyes, weaves, extensions, various styles, etc and noone says it menas they are ashamed of their ethnicity or will be unable to perform in society.

As I think about it more, this never ending focus on black women's hair is just another form of racism coming from the mainstream that tells us black women should be ashamed of our hair techniques of all types and should remain boxed into a limited view of black hair.

This iso ne reason I am so against the new Chris Rock show focusing on our hair. Becauise it's basically telling us to not color, perm, relax, style, anything else just so we can be put into a little box of natural hair wearers. if we keep following this, we'll soon all be wearing teeny weeny afros and nothing else!

It's another way of controlling black women, now under the guise of "making us proud" of our hair.

Black women are women and we can wear our hair however the hell we want to.

Mine is natural and neat and i think groomed natural (and unnatural) hair is beautiful, but I may straighten to bone straight like it was in high school one day,or cut it all off another day, wear braids, or dye it green. I just haven't chosen to do that rightnow because i'm traveling.

I truly don't believe that all black women have these hair-hating issues that everyone seems to think. but i do think most black women want styles and looks that they can relate to and that look good based on their preference.

if there is a destructive mindset about black womens hair out there, i definitely blame most of it on the MSM;s constant pushin gof the issue and not letting it rest and some of it on black male preferences more than on anybody else. i think a lot of women want to be attractive to men, and when they are rejected for something as simple as hair type, especially from their own, it makes for some serious hair issues. Maybe the new focus should be on black men and their self-hate issues.

i think most black women are ok with their hair as long as it's healthy - be it relaxed, natural, braided, weaved, etc.

Can I repost your comment? It's the only one that really makes sense.

Monie October 16, 2009 at 1:05 PM  

Allison Samuels is a terrible journalist. I used to hear her on News & Notes and she was a waste of air time.

I agree with you; this conversation is tired. I'm sick of everything that Black women do being treated like some sort of pathology that everyone feels they have the right to dissect.

CNN, Oprah, Tyra, Chris Rock all need to shut the heck up.

Hathor October 17, 2009 at 1:10 PM  

What gets me is that many Black women's natural hair cannot naturally be either nappy or straight styled.

I also think no Black male should speak on the subject, because mostly they speak with forked tongue.

Kit (Keep It Trill) October 17, 2009 at 7:35 PM  

Allison Samuels must have been having a slow day, devoid of ideas, when she wrote that article. Either that or she was giving a covert plug for Chris Rock's new movie. I kept waiting for her to mention it, but the closest she came was tagging her article, Good Hair. Now how da ya like that for sneakiness? She and/or Newsweek was planting a subliminal message, and I have to wonder why.

Prof. Tracey, I'm with you 100% on this one. As long as someone or their kids don't have head lice, I could less how they rock their style.

The Black Bot October 17, 2009 at 7:53 PM  

I disagree. Hair styles require a large about of thought. They can make or break our self-esteem. This indicates that hair is not irrelevant because it is a reflection of one's self. If few black women wear our hair in its natural state, it sends quite a message about what we think of it. I just made a response to your post here.

Invisible Woman October 20, 2009 at 1:26 PM  

co-sign 100% Professor T; i wear my hair natural, flatironed, kinky twisted, weaved, braided, wigged--it has absolutely zero to do with my self esteem. i just love fashion and changing it up. the term "good hair" that I receive from stylists makes me cringe. can we PLEASE move on to something else? jeesh.

Justice58 October 20, 2009 at 4:19 PM  

I am a sick and tired of folks talking about black hair like it's the ONE great problem in our black society. Get a clue people, IT ISN'T!!! A whole lot of black women with straight and nappy hair, "acceptable" and completely jacked up hairstyles, have voted in a black man as President, ran households and business, and yes, managed to think and chew gum at the same time! We need to stop buying into this tired and circular firing squad discussion any longer and I mean IMMEDIATELY

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Anonymous,  October 20, 2009 at 9:35 PM  

i couldn't agree with this commentary anymore and quite frankly its sickening that our own community participates in this trite topic. there are far more oppressive and destructive forces working against black women that should be addressed that will go unacknowledged because its not "sexy or glossy" enough for the public to consume as much as the topic of "black women's hair" is amongst the masses. the discussion around black hair is redundant and non-progressive, and is a topic that allows society to associate negativity with black women through their hair such as anger, confusion, and low self-esteem issues. our hair has been a focal point so that the masses can project a self-destructive agenda onto us black women, and honestly it needs to cease.

Anonymous,  October 23, 2009 at 10:03 PM  

I agree. Natural or relaxed it is a decision the person makes. It is not a BIG DEAL. I am sick of ppl saying that relaxed hair means you are this and natural hair means you are that...ppl wear their hair how they like...aren't they allowed to do what without people jumping all over them and thinking there is a BIG ISSUE behind why they chose relaxed or natural hair.

RiPPa October 24, 2009 at 11:11 AM  

It's good to know that "Good Hair" is the cure to all social woes associated with the Black community.

Yep,run out and buy perms so the current African American unemployment rate can go down.

p October 27, 2009 at 5:27 PM  

I think it depends on why you wear your hair the way you do. I can do it all; straight, nappy, weave, braids, whatever. For the longest time, I didn't want to look different from all of my white friends, and I was actually ashamed of my natural appearance. I grew up, thought seriously about why I wanted to be straight and light with big eyes and a little nose, and decided to be curly for a while. Now I guess I'm post-"conscious". Whatever works however it works is fine with me. Selling out to a media company, and using a kid to do it...not fine.

Anonymous,  November 13, 2009 at 1:18 AM  

my hair is in between straight and nappy. im not getting dreds, afros are too hard to maintain. braids are annoying when they are hanging by the thread after 2 months (and weve ALL seen this not to mention the braids on the ground in parks, sidewalks, and streets) so i wear my hair straight. i dont have to time to pick an afro out in the morning. a lot of time hair choice is about convenience and has nothing to do with race. so yeah im sick of it too. i agree with prof totally. lets get over it already, no one else has to pronouce their blackness at every interval in their life so why should we? "do tigers have to pronouce their tigritude?" - leopold senghot

Lexicala Complicata November 16, 2009 at 2:37 PM  

wow!! absolutely love this piece!!!
thnx for sharin!

Lexicala Complicata November 16, 2009 at 2:37 PM  

wow!! absolutely love this piece!!!
thnx for sharin!

Ulice December 8, 2009 at 6:41 PM  

I think one aspect of the obsession with Black women wearing weave is that most Black women have weave that is straight hair. The weave does not resemble their natural hair. Conversely white women get weave that IS like their natural hair. White women don't get kinky hair weaves....

Don't get me wrong, I don't care what a woman wears, as long as she look good. Just giving my opinion.

--Ulice Veasey Jr.

Sallysuelee July 25, 2011 at 3:06 PM  

I'm late in.. on the discussion but THANK YOU for getting pissed off about this discussion and until enough black women get pissed off.. to say, you know what, others notion or ideas of how I should wear my hair is of NO relevance or significance to me... we will continue to be sucked into this self-loathing, always perming, weaving, elongating false hair to pretend our hair meets society's standards... HA! I rock my kinky locks chemical-free and wild... and I LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!

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