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Dear Ari Lennox: Thou Shalt Not Beg in 2020

January 3, 2020

So here’s what we not gonna do in 2020 black women; we are not going to beg for the black community to see our worth because honestly, for the most part they don’t. In my last post I spoke a little bit about not bargaining your position, this is somewhat a part of that concept.

A few days ago someone on the Twitters (surprise surprise a black man) posted a tweet referring to Teyana Taylor and Ari Lennox as Rottweilers. Ari responded back by saying that “People hate blackness so bad” and pleading for black mothers and fathers to tell their black children they are beautiful. Of course the comment section of the black publications that posted it were filled with support; however, many, far too many came to the defense of the man who posted the original tweet.

Many saying that her being unattractive has nothing to do with the comment, or that the comment had nothing to do with race and wasn’t colorist. Which, of course, most intelligent people can clearly see what is truly being said but intellectual dishonesty is more rampant than the out of wedlock rate. The commentary prompted Ari to come back and make a response on her live, essentially once again begging for her image to at minimum not be dragged through the mud. 

And to that, my dear Ari and every other black woman who is still in this new decade begging for the “community” to respect them...Hang it up, they don’t care. 

I am saying this with love, as I completely understand where she is coming from. I was in that space once upon of time. I remember just how rejected, shocked, upset, and betrayed I felt knowing that the community who was supposed to love and support my phenotype hated it. I went through the think pieces and the reasoning for the worth of black women. However, we as a collective have to realize that they just don’t care.

How long have we been talking about colorism, featurism, and its affects? The conversation is now mainstream so there's no way the community doesn't know at this point. They don’t care about logic, emotions, what we say, how we feel. We need to care more about our interests and put ourselves first, instead of hoping for scraps and the bare minimum. 

If I were Ari, I'd take me and my talent to whoever appreciates it. I just want black woman to have higher self-esteem, it seems like being stuck in this hamster wheel of wanting and craving black people’s acceptance is making us miserable. To be clear, there isn’t a single group of people who accepts black women by and large, we should know this and be past this rebuttal by now. I am saying that begging for any one group, especially the group we belong to makes us look desperate and worthless.

Of course, I understand that these conversations are important, we need to continue to talk about these issues but I am growing tired of seeing beautiful black women defending their like-ness to a group that doens't deserve it.  I just want for black women in 2020 to start focusing more energy on their own level up, enjoying life and moving in spaces that serve and celebrate us. If we really believe we are queens, we need to learn that we don’t negotiate our worth and we certainly do not beg. 

Liv is a new blogger for DDS Magazine. She graduated University in 2018, with a degree in History & English Lit and in her free time is an avid creative writer, History & Fashion enthusiast, as well as a cat-mom to three kittens. When she is not creating, she works at a children's non-profit and enjoys spending her weekends doing Pilates, hiking, shopping and indulging in Sci-fi novels. 

 

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