2016 was a rough year for me. I accrued over ten thousand dollars in debt, was fired from two jobs, gained ten pounds, had my computer crash on me...twice, found out that the woman I’ve been crushing on at work for two years hates my guts, and all my favorite sports teams went into the toilet. On top of all of that my three biggest celebrity crushes are all officially off the market. Well, one has been off the market for awhile and I just found out, actress Denise Vasi. God's greatest creation Ciara is pregnant with Russell Wilson's baby and now the best female athlete of my lifetime, Serena Williams, is engaged. (OK, I understand I would probably never have a shot with any of them, but dammit let a brother dream for a second!) Serena's surprise engagement to Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian has created quite the uproar of the Internet and, unfortunately, within the Black community.
The Twitter universe exploded with dagger-sharp criticism of the wife-to-be. Such commentary like "First Eve, now Serena. These white boys pullin' all the sistas" and "What time we gonna address Serena not being strong enough to handle a dominant black king and settling for a mayonnaise boy?" is absolutely SMH-worthy. My absolute favorite tweet about this story reads, "Serena Williams has been linked to every Black man in the industry and she turns around and marries the white devil". Mrs. Satan Serena to the altar please!
So, let’s address the gold-colored elephant in the room: it’s 2017 and Blacks still feel that Blacks should only be with other Blacks. A couple of beautiful Black women offered their input on this issue of Black-on-Black dating. One woman, 25, told me “Black men seem to think I owe it to them to talk to them.” This is a microcosm of the biased, segregated society we live in. More than ever before, people want to live in their own little echo chambers. Some people only want to be around others who think like they do, act like they do, talk like they do, share the same opinions and looks like them. Interracial dating is rising steadily and more Blacks are approving of these interracial relationships. One of the most tired arguments is that Whites do not understand the struggle of Blacks and do not stand up for Black issues. Let’s not be so hypocritical here. Are we concerned with the poor work conditions of overseas sweatshops every time we buy that nice shirt made in China or Taiwan? Offshore fishing is one of the most dangerous jobs in America. How many think about this when they are enjoying themselves at Red Lobster? Whites do not have to vocal about Black issues to date Black people. It is not their fight and they should not be forced to go to battle. This is an incredibly selfish mindset that more and more Blacks seemingly fall victim to.
Let's walk in the shoes of a now thirty-six year old Black woman. As a child in a predominantly Black neighborhood, all of the stable male figures in her life were White. Her neighbor, who would let her stay over at his house when her father would not pick her up from school because of a Jack Daniels-induced slumber, was White. Her favorite teacher, who provided a safe, judge-free haven for her to confide in when no one else would, was White. The best bosses she worked for were White, and none of them tried to flirt with her. As any normal person would, she started noticing a pattern. She noticed this same pattern in the dating realm. “Most of the Black guys that would approach me acted so arrogant and pompous. They would undress me with their eyes and it was really creepy.” It was totally different when she talked to White men. “They asked me what my interests were, what I was passionate about. They took an interest in me as a person and not just trying to get in my pants.” She even noticed a difference in their lifestyles. “Some of the Black men I dated had kids they did not take care. A lot of baggage. The White guys I dated had their personal lives in order.”
The deterioration of the modern day family is not anything new to us. Black families have been on the wrong side of this equation for quite some time. CNN’s Don Lemon suggests that 72 percent of Blacks are born out of wedlock. African-American women get divorced twice as much as Whites and Hispanics. Young Black men do not know what a strong family, let alone a good relationship, looks like. Black men take all of this turmoil and disregard for women of their color and they lead very messy love lives. If you are a Black woman, why would you want to deal with all of that?
To all my Black fellas, tired of seeing beautiful Black women go elsewhere for romance. Look in the mirror. We need to get our acts together.
Photo from PopCrush.com