Positive Propaganda: The World Deserves an Accurate Image of Black Women!
“You can’t be what you can’t see.” — Marie Wilson, Founding President of The White House Project
As we work collectively to heal each other and strengthen the ways in which we show up in the world, beginning by creating a firm foundation of self-respect, self-reverance, and self-love (while providing and accepting authentic, sisterly support), we’ll then need to combat the images projected in today’s media about who we are.
We can then begin changing yesterday’s perceptions to match today’s reality.
Can you think of a group of people more maligned and misrepresented in the media than black women? Even black men, while portrayed overwhelmingly as criminals and miscreants, have it better, by and large, in the eyes of the media than black women. Heck, at least rap stars, while most trash us in song, are loved in popular culture! And let’s not talk about media worship of our black sports figures and other entertainers. As long as we’re skipping, dancing, crooning, cooning, dunking, oh, and trashing black women, there’s room in the limelight.
Think about how black women are portrayed in today’s rap music (I now have a headache), in the movies (prostitute, anyone?), and on television (fill-in-the-blank_”Wives”). Even print media has joined the “black women are the devil” band-wagon with recent articles (falsely) claiming our physical inferiority, unattractiveness, and life-long fate of personal abandonment and isolation.
It’s time to cry “foul”, and not in a few well-written-but-few-read articles on websites preaching to the choir, but OUT LOUD, to the masses. We need to boycott, and campaign; to put our money where our pride and reputations are, and stop allowing these inaccurate or stereotypical portrayals, vulgar lyrics, and LIES to persist.
If that means we stop buying certain albums if we hear the words b**tch, ho, tip-drill, jump-off, baby-mama, hooker, tramp, skeezer (I’m sooo old, ha!), or if it involves content that’s obviously, or subversively, misogynistic, then, oh, well, we just have to. If you’re paying money for and dancing to something you wouldn’t want someone to call you to your face then what are you REALLY saying (to yourself and to others)? You cannot serve two masters.
And seriously, if I hear one more “brutha” talk about our bodies (via song) in ways that would make a gynecologist blush, someone’s gonna lose a bottom lip! How dare they? We deserve more. Better. RESPECT!
I have a nice, tidy, list of commercial advertisers that need to get a brutal wake up call that we will not stand for being portrayed as angry, ignorant, inferior, attitudinal, or heck, not represented AT ALL (invisible) and expect us to still patronize them by buying their products. We see you, and we’re prepared to send our message of discontent loud and clear by speaking through our lack of patronage.
Most importantly, since this is a site dedicated to UPLIFTING black women, we’ll want to give a contented purr and paw-bump (that’s a C.A.T. fist-bump) to those commerical advertisers and media corporations that DO show us in a positive light and who actively give back to our community, both here in America and in our motherland, Africa.
We’ll shine a light on our media partners, and advocate for more of the same.
Let’s birth our Media Watchdog (Watch-Cat) group for black women!
I’m thinking our first call to action is a campaign. A loud, proud, self-defining and societal re-defining campaign stating who we really are. Again, I cannot do this alone, so feel free to include your suggestions in the comments section, or reach out to me via firstname.lastname@example.org.
We, my dear sisters, are about to embark on some some serious public relations.