As a Black man in America, I can relate to what it feels like to be powerless. I can relate to having everything I say, do, wear, etc. scrutinized and judged without any consideration for who or what I am.
But, I am a man. And as a man, I still enjoy a level of privilege in our predominantly patriarchal society. Yes, I know what powerlessness, microaggression, and discrimination feel like. What I don’t know is how all that feels as a woman and specifically, a Black woman.
A quick Google search revealed that as many as 24 states are considering passing anti-natural hair discrimination laws. This is 2020. Why would states have to have laws like this?
Well, another quick search for “unprofessional hair” showed images of Black women wearing their hair in a variety of natural styles.
Finally, another search shows that Black women earn just $0.62 for every dollar paid to white, non-Hispanic men. These are some horrifying stats and stories, but they are only the tip of the iceberg.
The above is a summation of the major issues of appearance and employment. But what are the day-to-day challenges?
What do Black women have to face every day – even when they have reached some level of professional success? That question was answered this week during the broadcast of Monday Night Football.
A Black woman who was enjoying the fruits of her hard-earned success was judged and insulted by a white man who wasn’t nearly as successful as she, but exercised his privilege and earned notoriety at her expense.