My friend was telling me a story of how his roommate disliked black people. For some reason, majority of the conversations I am in, somewhere along the lines, the topic of anti-blackness emerges. Whether I’m having a conversation with my friend about what type of person they would bring home, how parents feel about black people, our experiences being black, and what not. Sitting down and analyzing this has made me realize that anti-blackness is not only real in other communities but also in my own community: the African community. Why are black people hated on? What is it about the color of our skin that creates this hatred? Black people have been seen as inferior since slavery. We are still seen as inferior even today. Yet, what troubles me most is why other people of color dislike black people as well. It’s not just about the system and the social construction of race that has created this hatred.

What is it about black people that makes my Asian friend afraid of bringing a black person home? What is it about black people that makes my Hispanic friend’s mom dislike us? What is it about black people that makes Africans against African Americans and vice versa? What is it about black people that makes my African friend say that her family would rather she bring home a white man than a black man?

Let’s carefully think about this: what is it about black people that has created this hatred? I’m not saying that this hatred is new nor am I saying that the system is not to blame. No. I’m saying that some of it really has to do with the negative stereotypes that are associated with us black people and the way the media portrays us. Take the stereotype of black males being dangerous. Many people in our society believe that this is true. This stereotype is accentuated even further from our local news to the big screens. And it is affecting us internally and externally. By internally, I mean colorism, but that’s another discussion.

Anti-blackness is real. There are people denying it, but it is real. Because of this, the way people treat us black people is disgusting. I’m tired of having the same conversations with people about anti-blackness. I’m tired of my friends telling me how much their parents dislike black people. I’m tired of this “feud” between Africans and African Americans. For so long, we’ve been treated and viewed negatively. I’m tired of hearing all of the negative things about us. For once, I want to hear good things about black people.

Of course, there is more to discuss and I will definitely come back to this. But, I would like to do research on Anti-blackness. This might be my thesis topic.

I’m ending this by quoting Nina Simone: “To me we are the most beautiful creatures in the whole world. Black people. And I mean that in every sense…” 



White America and Color Blindness

When I think of the term color blindness, I think of colors like purple, red, and green. I remember when someone told me that they were color blind. I was confused, and I thought to myself, what colors can’t they see? I immediately panicked, thinking, oh my gosh, does it mean that they can’t see that I’m black? Please don’t laugh at my stupidity. But the odd thing is that after they told me that they were color blind, months later, I started hearing people on TV and on certain videos, saying that they are color blind. Now let me clarify what those people meant when they said that they were ‘color blind’: they cannot see race. You’re probably thinking, um okay… Well let me tell you what I’m thinking: what kind of nonsense and rubbish be this? (In my African accent). How the hell can you not see race? Are you blinded by white America, that you can no longer see color? You can no longer see my dark skin? Oh please.  

These people are uncomfortable about race and they have made themselves believe that avoiding the topic of race and saying that they are color blind only helps us black people. No, actually it does not. It makes us uncomfortable, for the simple fact that you want to ignore my blackness; you want to believe that there is no color in this world, there is only whiteness. Stop. Look at my skin color, and acknowledge it. Don’t look at my skin color and give me that bull crap, “I don’t see race, sorry, I’m color blind.” No, my friend, you are not colorblind, you’re just ignorant and afraid. Just admit the fact that white America has blinded you with its whiteness.
Moreover, for my black people, who choose to let these ‘color blind’ people humiliate and insult you, just please open your eyes, shine your eyes (again in my African accent). Don’t let these people ignore your blackness. Be proud of your blackness and speak up. The next time you see one of these ‘color blind’ people, and they tell you, “I don’t see race, sorry, I’m color blind,” you better tell them this: “You are not color blind. You have what is known as white blindness. You’re blinded by white America. Go to the hospital and get that checked out, my friend.”