In one night, Quvenzhané Wallis was sexualized by Seth McFarlane, disrespected by an AP reporter who told her she’ll call her ‘Annie’ instead, was denied an Oscar vote because of her name and called the c-word by a large media organization in the name of ‘satire’.
For brown babies there’s no such thing as too young to hurt, we don’t get to have innocence. From the moment we’re born we become walking statistics; for absent fathers, welfare recipients, predisposed to violence and poverty, we become jokes to be distributed to the white folks who see us as leeches on this society.
Well here’s the thing.
It’s true that my hair does not shine like rays of the sun, my skin does not have the delicacy of porcelain, and my character is not that of a ‘classic’ lady.
My hair is black because whiteness has taken the sunlight from my soul, my skin is brown and rough because whiteness has kicked dirt on me for so long, and my character is aggressive because I’ve had to learn to survive whiteness. At least that’s how it feels to be a WoC some days.
But I’m tired of being seen through the eyes of whiteness.
Instead I choose to believe that my hair is dark because I absorb all the shine to have the strength and energy to strive, I choose to believe that my skin is brown because I, like the soil of the earth, am full of life and purpose, and I choose to believe that what you call aggressiveness, I call courage to live my life as I see fit.
So to all brown babies out there, don’t let the world darken your soul, and don’t let the world tell you that you are less than spectacular, because our history is that of legends. We fought armies, we slayed dragons and we will conquer those who try to hold us back.