Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A New Defintion of Passable + Black Men Rejecting Their Moms

Identity is incredibly important. It's who you are, how you portray yourself and the basis of your point of view and interaction with the world. This is why people who have a strong identity seem to be secure, confident, assured, and stable. If you don't know who you are, how can you interact with others or make sense of the world. A weird wrinkle in American history is the concept of 'passing' or being passable. In the original idea, it was if a non-white could pass for white. There were advantages to this through the laws in America, but like so many things, we live in 'negative society' where everything is inversed from days of old. Now the key is to 'pass' for the other, the minority, the different. No community is a better example of this than the black community, not just due to the benefits through affiramtive action preferences, but for acceptance as 'cool' or part of the in crowd. Consider the comedy of Halle Berry stating she belives in the one drop rule, which was a 'horror' for discriminating against blacks, and considers her daughter who is 1/4 black to be "black". A few years ago, I came across a website that mentioned this in a peculiar way. Blacks don't say they enforce that code, but sometimes the mask slips, and you get the truth. Passing was considered a shameful rejection of one's racial identity as they craved acceptance in white society. Passing of that nature doesn't exist anymore, but passing for the 'other' does and in odd places. Blacks still seek acceptance from whites, but they do it in different ways now.

This website post explains why a black guy dug Indian girls (the comments are great). I quote, “they look just like hot light skinned black girls.  Brown skin, long straight hair, European features, they already have the total package everyone works so hard to find.” A black guy is saying everyone (all black men) works hard to find a woman who has straight hair (non-black hair characteristics), European features (non-black facial features), but has brown skin. For decades, if not centuries, some black women would try to pass for white to be accepted in white society or for the step up in opportunity. Now, the new concept of passing is for a girl to be just black enough to bring home to momma. I will swear that this is behind black men's love of Rashida Jones who is cute, but doesn't deserve the attention she gets from black men. The key is she is basically a white woman that because of her dad being Quincy, the brothers can tell mom that Rashida is a sister.

When reading something like that, you get the feeling black guys are looking for a white woman they can call black so they are being true to their black identity. RooshV had a post on black guys looking for white women, and tried to spin it off as a pursuit for thinner women. I'll give him some points on that, as the thinner women thing explains some of it (American blacks = Roosh's blind spot). It does not explain the chubby to rotund white girl with black guy (of all sizes) phenomenon. Last time I went to Denny's it felt like 'take your fat white girl to lunch' day. What's the average weight of a white woman who sleeps with a black man? 180 pounds? Come on, Roosh. Why would they date land whale white girls? It is especially odd considering men selecting women who share similar facial features or the idea of men selecting women who look like their moms. Black men preferring white women, and chubsters, not Cindy Crawford types, is a weird concept as it is a rejection of what they grew up with and search for a completely different look. it is also a search not for the ideal of that other (Cindy Crawford), but a bloated, grainy imposter.

This is a bit of a reach, but it might go back to Alexis de Tocqueville's comment on the nature of blacks in America (pg 135, Democracy in America),

"makes a thousand fruitless efforts to insinuate himself among men who repulse him; he conforms to the tastes of his oppressors, adopts their opinions, and hopes by imitating them to form a part of their community."


It may have been a status marker to be with a white woman when Jack Johnson did it, and even up to the '80s. Now with a generation of intermingling in the rearview, and the common pairing of land whale white girl with black guy, it has become a joke. There is no status bump. Side note: a black friend once theorized that black men date fat, divorced white women because they know the white guy is paying child support and alimony so they don't have to have steady work. I do think de Tocqueville is onto something though as it is a cry for acceptance by these black men. Similar to a black man making it and trading in his attractive black girlfriend or wife for a white woman (Bryant Gumbel/Tiki Barber). It is leaving that black community with its tough streets in the rearview mirror.

Like many things about black Americans, it is a double edged sword. Keep puffing your chest out to your boys that you have a white girlfriend but you keep it real while you're riding in the passenger seat of a minivan with her kids in the back, to soccer practice. Sure, you are proud of your identity as a black guy, but you left black women behind and rejected the image of the woman who raised you. Due to cultural traits, you're most likely leaving behind the women who raised you (momma and gramama) for a white chubster. "Yeah I'm black, but I'm not one of those blacks. My girl ain't ratchet". It is human nature to aim to be a part of the winning team, but at society's core, there are just some harsh lines of separation. Humans seek acceptance and they seek status amongst their peers. We just all do it in different ways.

1 comment:

Steve Johnson said...

"Similar to a black man making it and trading in his attractive black girlfriend or wife for a white woman (Bryant Gumbel/Tiki Barber)."

Tiki's ex-wife is Vietnamese.