Last week The New York Times published "The Case for Black With a Capital B," an op-ed by Professor Lori L. Tharps. I congratulate her for opening a conversation that is long overdue, a conversation that goes to the heart of how a large group of Americans with the most difficult of histories has struggled to express itself and gain greater agency in American society.
I walked the walk, talked the talk, and now had a student ID card showing that I am an educated person. However, this didn't stop a store owner from turning up her nose at me when I entered her shop and having one of her associates follow me around. And this didn't stop the suspicious stares of residents in a small town where I visited one of my friends this past year.
When performing black femininity at the request of white or non-black spaces, we are continuing the violence against black women. Without reconciling the privilege of masculinity, we are continuing that violence. Letting our white gay counterparts parade black femininity only reproduces the problem.