Sunday, January 29, 2012

Does Your Man's Money Matter?

I just read a ridiculous post on Madame Noire called Does Your Man's Money Matter? Reasons to Love Him Not His Loot. Even the title is annoying because it implies you either love a man or love his money not that you love the man and being successful is part of the man. This reminds me of all those unrealistic articles aimed at Black women telling us to lower our standards, to not consider money in any way, and to find a man with so-called "potential" to raise with our love. Don't believe it! An EBW seeks out a successful gentleman who is on her level and compliments her rather than drags her down. My comment on Madame Noire appears below. No I am not saying love a man for his money, just like I would never advocate staying with a no good man because he is good in bed, or because he is good looking. You want a complete package and being successful and financially secure is part of that package. But of course, you have to have something to offer and realistically, you may only find a match who is on your level. Be realistic, but don't lower yourself. 

In this whole argument what I object to is women of a certain level or success being told to consider men of little/no success the same way they would successful men. I object to the target of this message. Yes, if you are poor strive to improve your situation in any (legal) way you can, if you are sick try to become healthier, if you are failing school try to become an honor's student, if you can't do something try to improve so that you can. Those are positive and reasonable messages. I don't subscribe to any teachings that you are supposed to be suffering where you are and that is where you are meant to be. I believe and encourage everyone to improve (that's the purpose of this blog). But I object to telling someone to do anything that may be against their best interests and to not strive to be or obtain the best they can. If your grades are good enough for the best school you should apply to that school (and safety schools just in case) and don't apply to the worst school out there. If you are smart then apply to a good job where you can benefit financially from your intelligence, not a job that won't use your talent. If you are beautiful go for the best man you can get, don't go for the ugliest guy just because he needs love too. Aim for what you deserve or even higher, not lower. I have no problems with articles teaching poor men how to score successful women because that would be them trying to win the best! 

But this article is backwards and advises successful women to go for poor makes no sense. Well, it makes sense if you think these women are desperate and that's the point! No one would advise you to do something against your best interests unless you are desperate, they are somehow benefiting from it, or if they are just not very smart. If you are not desperate don't take their advice! Next thing you know someone will be advising middle-class women to go to "the hood" to find single men because they need love too and they can raise them to be successful...nonsense! Here are some articles about dating down: Putting Money on the Table7 Signs you are Dating Down,  Dating Down, the Girl's Advantage (interesting, it's about dating down physically, something that I actually do for the same reasons in the article. Can't trust a guy who's too good looking lol. I go for average cute, even a bit nerdy, my height or taller, but not someone who has every woman drooling).
This is one of THE WORST articles I have ever read on Madame Noire! Was this actually written by a Black woman? It sounds exactly like one of those Black woman haters who feel entitled to any Black woman, no matter how little he has done with his life. The same men who say all you should care about is love (not the fact that he never works, dropped out of school, is a criminal etc...totally unrealistic) and that if you believe in them somehow they will succeed (even if they haven't for 35 years previously). This is that same stupid "raise a man" thing that has been told ONLY to Black women. Enough with the comparisons to Michelle and Barack, he was a Harvard educated lawyer! That was not having nothing! There is a BIG difference between having a degree in lucrative field and being some wannabe rapper! 
And the examples of someone with potential you give (someone waiting for the NFL, record contract, becoming a successful artist) perfect examples of long-shots where it's rare for anyone to succeed and you are advising women to go for those men! I NEVER go for athletes, musicians, or artists because they rarely succeed and anyone with sense knows that! Men with degrees have potential and are likely to succeed but that's nowhere in your article!
I can not believe that in this day in age you are actually suggesting a woman stay with a broke man because of his "magic stick"!?? What a brainless piece of nonsense because that magic stick will not pay the bills and sex does not equal love or respect. So many women get in major trouble for that very thing (putting up with abuse, getting pregnant by a deadbeat) because of the magic stick and you are advocating staying with someone because of that??? 
The most annoying thing about this article is that once again, the poor man is painted as someone who is full of love, good in bed, and has potential. What make you think he has those qualities and a man with a middle income does not? Successful men are just as loving and good in bed, plus they can pay their bills. Poor men need love do stupid, ugly, obnoxious, lazy, drug-addicted, and violent men so should you give them a chance too? Only Black women are given the advice to lower their standards and take a chance on someone who is clearly unsuccessful. Black women raise your standards! If you are successful look for someone else who is and never lower your standards because you feel sorry for someone or because of their magic stick!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Tribute to Black Beauty Queens

I've been meaning to make this post for a while but I didn't have the time. Last month I watched videos of Black beauty queens on YouTube and I have links for you all to watch. These are the women we need to look up to! I'm not talking about being some diva, doing anything to win including sabotaging other women, or being nothing but a pretty face. I'm talking about being intelligent, well-spoken, educated, ambitious, poised, congenial, and a well-rounded woman who men desire and women envy. Those are the traits of an EBW! Enjoy these videos and pay special attention to the make-up (natural looking), physique (healthy, not underweight or overweight, athletic not masculine), intelligence (in the answers), poise, and grace. Many of these pageants award scholarships, the chance to travel and make new connections, and the opportunity to be a role model. They are not just pretty faces...but they could do without the swimsuit competition. Oh yes, and look at how lovely Black women can look in gowns!

Vanessa Williams Miss America 1984 (yes I know about her indiscretion but she still carries herself like a lady and expressed herself so well in this video!)

Chelsi Smith Miss USA 1995

Janelle Commissiong first Black Miss Universe 1977
Vanessa Williams Miss America 1984 and Vanessa Williams the beauty queen
Miss Trinidad Miss world 1986 (Halle Berry is in this clip)
Debbie Turner Miss America 1990
Carole Gist Miss USA 1990
Kenya Moore Miss USA 1993
Ericka Dunlap Miss America 2004 (she was so surprised it's hilarious!)
Carissa Cameron Miss America 2010
Leila Lopes Miss Universe 2011

Miss Black American Princess Pageant (good example of showing girls how to behave)
Black beauty queens around the world

Are Controlling Black Men Responsible for the "Angry Black Woman" Stereotype?

I found an interesting article called Are Controlling Black Men Responsible for the "Angry Black Woman" Stereotype? Once again, the article points out that Black women need to stop embracing the terms "strong" and "independent" because they are harming us and making us seem different from other women. Although some women of other ethnicities may like the term "independent", they are usually still looked upon as women who are in need or care and tenderness, unlike Black women. That's just the way it is, other women can use these terms and still be treated with care, but we don't get the same.

The solution...reject those terms and never apply them to yourself. Accept any term that implies you are an Elegant Black Woman (EBW) such as graceful, kind, nice, friendly, sophisticated, beautiful, pretty, smart, intelligent, witty, charming, or anything else that is positive or feminine. Reject any masculine term (being intelligent is not a masculine term). Do not let women who embrace masculine terms influence you. That means, be wary of certain feminist ideals (I mean feminist not those who seek equal rights for women) and encouragement to accept all things masculine and see all traditionally feminine things as inferior. Embrace the feminine and do what you need to do to lead a happy, healthy life where you are treated with respect, kindness, and tenderness.

What really stood out for me in the article is that Black women are sometimes called "angry" when they ask for what they want and called "independent" when they get what they want themselves. I think they should have also included that we are called "strong" in order to keep us accepting negative situations (e.g., poverty, abusive relationships, disrespect etc.). These words have been used to manipulate us! This brings me back to my previous article Assertiveness Training Will Save Black Women and how important it is for us to be able to express ourselves, what we need and want, and when we are being mistreated in an assertive manner rather than being aggressive or passive. This is how we can communicate and still be regarded as feminine not angry or strong. Nowadays I have no problem asking for what I want and getting it, and I appear approachable, friendly, and feminine to the people I encounter. Smile, ask for what you want in an assertive manner, and the world might just fall at your charming feet!