From The Atlantic
Via Jezebel, Jill Scott relays the pain:
My new friend is handsome, African-American, intelligent and seemingly wealthy. He is an athlete, loves his momma, and is happily married to a White woman. I admit when I saw his wedding ring, I privately hoped. But something in me just knew he didn’t marry a sister. Although my guess hit the mark, when my friend told me his wife was indeed Caucasian, I felt my spirit…wince. I didn’t immediately understand it. My face read happy for you. My body showed no reaction to my inner pinch, but the sting was there, quiet like a mosquito under a summer dress. Was I jealous? Did the reality of his relationship somehow diminish his soul’s credibility?
The answer is not simple. One could easily dispel the wince as racist or separatist, but that’s not how I was brought up. I was reared in a Jehovah’s Witness household. I was taught that every man should be judged by his deeds and not his color, and I firmly stand where my grandmother left me. African people worldwide are known to be welcoming and open-minded. We share our culture sometimes to our own peril and most of us love the very notion of love. My position is that for women of color, this very common “wince” has solely to do with the African story in America.
Scott goes on to detail the history of black women, racist degradation, and beauty standards. All of which is true and holds weight. But I think the key problem here is a common one—a kind of collectivist approach toward something as individual and private as marriage. The point about “African people worldwide” is a tip off. Now I ride for my folks, but we certainly are no more “welcoming and open-minded” than any other group of people.