I hope you did your reading for this week. -JBHarris
I know we are talking about Black Girl Bitterness this month. But I thought it would be a good thing to point out how society sees or likes to classify Black women when in day to day life. Other than the Sexy Black Girl (the Jezebel/Wench), or the Angry Black Girl, we have the Sapphire. This is a troupe seen in the show Amos & Andy.
On the outset, the world around us loves Sapphires! They are quick witted, take no shit, and seem to keep the world spinning. But in the power of the actions, the boldness of her words, and her willingness to ‘say it like it T-I- IS’ there is this tint to her which can make you be considered bitter.
Even though we know she isn’t.
With that said, let me say this (because it needs to be said): Black women do not exist to be your sassy, Black friend! We do not exist to be magical, and helpful, and completely at the service of non-melaninated people. Yet, this is a comfortable default to some Black women! Why?
Sapphires, the Sassy Black Girl, is the expected persona the world has for Black women. It is expected Black women be in the world almost as these social shamans being able see the world in all its ugliness, confront it and never affected by it.
This is not possible, Torches.
Black women are not superheroes, impervious to the hurts of the world. And it the hurts of the world (sometimes) which make or can make ANYONE bitter! But, because Black women are these beings non-melaninated people like to collect (like Mammies or Pokemon!) it doesn’t truly give us room as people to move or express ourselves. Then, when aren’t all Black Girl Magic and sunshine with a helping of “Girl, you shole right about it!” the world doesn’t know how to handle that. Then we become something alien; something not easily controlled.
We become a too tight shoe or a handbag which is too heavy. Everything becomes our fault, we are useless and we are then classified as a ‘bitter Black woman.’
Yet…here we are! All in the world and doing amazing things and having damn near every non-Black woman in the world biting our style and aesthetic, while telling us what we need to change in order to be accepted. It is the craziest thing in the world! Moreover, when a Black woman or girl doesn’t neatly fall into one of these pre-labeled boxes, she’s rendered unusable! Then, the world wants to know why we are ‘bitter.’
If you are asking a Black woman “Why is she so mad?” You already lost.
[image from slideplayer.com and blackthen.com]