Archive for Monday, September 18, 2006

Black culture sells out black children

September 18, 2006


"Can you show me the doll that looks bad?"

The two baby dolls are identical except that one has pale skin, the other is dark. The little black girl, maybe 5 years old, has been holding up the pale doll, but in response to the question, she puts it down and picks up the other.

"Why does that look bad?" the interviewer asks.

"Because it's black," the little girl says.

"And why do you think that's the nice doll?" asks the interviewer, referring to the light-skinned doll.

"Because she's white."

"And can you give me the doll that looks like you?"

The dark-skinned girl reaches for the light-skinned doll, jiggling it as if she really wants to pick it up. In the end, with palpable reluctance, she pushes the black doll forward.

You might be forgiven for thinking you have happened upon one of the "Doll Tests" conducted by Dr. Kenneth Clark beginning in the late 1930s, tests that helped persuade the Supreme Court to strike down segregation in its Brown v. Board of Education decision. But this is a new doll test, conducted by Kiri Davis, a 17-year-old student from New York, for "A Girl Like Me," her short film about black girls and standards of beauty. You can see it at But be warned: if you have a heart, the new doll test will break it.

Hard upon mourning, though, will come outrage. How is this possible? How can this still be true? How in the hell, a lifetime after a little boy in Arkansas pointed to the black doll and said, "That's a nigger ... I'm a nigger," can we still have black children who think black and bad are synonymous?

Some of us were born of the generation that came of age with a mandate to hurl that thinking back onto history's trash heap. Some of us remember when James Brown sang "Say It Loud, I'm Black and I'm Proud." Some of us knew that when Aretha Franklin spelled out "Respect," she wasn't just talking to a feckless lover. Some of us piled Afros high on our heads and sprayed them with Afro Sheen till they shone. Some of us clenched our fists and cried "Black is beautiful" in the face of a nation that had always told us you could be one or the other, but never both.

And for what? So that 40 years later, our children would still parrot media-derived lies of their own worthlessness? What's appalling is that many of the lies now originate with black people themselves.

That's not to let white people off the hook. The simple arithmetic of majority/minority means that under the best of circumstances, a child of color will always see fewer images of people like her in media. And the white makers and gatekeepers of those fewer images have historically weighted them toward ineffectuality, hyper sexuality, native criminality and plain ignorance.

What's different now is that blacks are, themselves, often the makers and gatekeepers. And under our aegis the images have, in many ways, gotten worse.

To surf the video channels is to be immersed in black culture as conceived by a new generation, a lionization of pimps and gold-diggers, hustlers and thugs who toss the N-word with a gusto that would do the Klan proud. A new generation, afflicted with historical amnesia, blind indifference, and a worship of filthy lucre dances a metaphorical buck and wing, eyes rolling, yassuh bossing, selling itself out, selling its forebears out. Most of all, selling the children out.

And it's little excuse to say we're only buying lies we have internalized, lies that become self-fulfilling prophecy. That's all well and good, but the moment you're able to understand that you've been lied to is the moment you bear responsibility for promulgating some truth in reply. That too few of us are willing to accept that responsibility is driven home every time one of those black children chooses a white doll.

We've spent 387 years in this country trying to get white folks to love us. Might help if we first learned to love ourselves.

- Leonard Pitts Jr., winner of the 2004 Pulitzer Prize for commentary, is a columnist for the Miami Herald.


xenophonschild 11 years, 9 months ago


How many prison race riots you been in? Stabbings? Pipings? Gang wars?

Ignorance and inexperience are no basis for "innocence." Black gangbangers don't care squat about your even-handedness, your racial equanimity, your progressive views on race. The only nuance they care about is - will you defend yourself?

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

X, kind of like Monsters Ball? He was a cop though wasn't he?

carolannfugate 11 years, 9 months ago

Wow this thread has run the gamet. I have to agree the issue of prejudice is more related to economics than skin tone. Sorry I missed the comment @ feet.

Linda Endicott 11 years, 9 months ago

I know prejudice againsts blacks (and other races) exists, and discrimination exists, and I wish they didn't.

I've never lived in a big city, so I don't know what kind of discrimination occurs there, as opposed to a smaller town.

But around here, I see much more discrimination based on income level than anything else. People are judged by what they do, how much they make, what they drive, what they wear, and how they look.

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

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Sacerdotal 11 years, 9 months ago

God has created all men equal in His own image, when man attempted to replace God's law it only showed the flaw in man. For man's law has one logical outcome, men are not created equal and hence are not suitable for the future of man. Margaret Sanger, the infamous liberal embraced man's law and began the extermination of the "lesser" humans, non-whites. Only God's law is perfect.

Thank you for talking to the FATHER for us and letting us know what is wise and true. Can the rest of us get in the same line? We are all in need of guidance.

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

"It's that old catch-22...they won't hire you without experience, and you can't get experience without a job first."

Lot's of places will hire you with out experience... that's what is called entry level.... unfortunatly many today feel that is beneath them... if they can't start at the top they won't start at all.

It is hard to prove you will be a reliable employee if your school attendance is bad and your attitude sucks.

Linda Endicott 11 years, 9 months ago

Working two jobs is fine and dandy, if you happen to live in an area where even one job is available to you, let alone two. A lot of people have enough trouble finding one job. We all can't be privileged enough to live in an area with loads of jobs and opportunities.

And living within your means varies greatly depending on what state or city you happen to live in. Costs a lot more in some areas, less in others. But, in the areas where cost of living is lower, so is the pay for the available jobs.

It's that old catch-22...they won't hire you without experience, and you can't get experience without a job first.

Linda Endicott 11 years, 9 months ago

I've read, Badger, that in sheer numbers, there are more whites in poverty than any other race, though Hispanics are catching up. As far as the percentage of any one race living in poverty, there are more Native Americans than any other race.

This is where it would definitely be more helpful for companies to hire people based on their skills or willingness to learn, rather than how many degrees they have.

Just because someone doesn't have a college degree doesn't mean they couldn't do the work. It just means they couldn't afford to go to college, that's all. But business doesn't care about that.

xenophonschild 11 years, 9 months ago


You hit the nail on the head - "too much experience with one kind of person."

Members of the regional black incarcerated underclass - the gangbangers and whitey haters - and I have a long and bitter history, and I'm not alone. Most white convicts are functional racists: being a racist helps you survive in the joint.

There are no basic differences between people. We are all alike. But blacks suffered slavery, and that is one sin they have not and cannot forgive or forget. Until that happens, racial animosity will be a recurrent theme in many of our lives.

My second novel - set in Lawrence, circa 1990 no less - is a story about a white racist ex-convict and the young black woman he falls in love with. If I can waltz it through the machinations of querulous publishers, I recommend all of you read it. It's not pretty, but it is true.

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

they delete my post about feet??? roflmao very nice.

Yes there are barbie and kens of all races and the bratz dolls are very scary... thier heads are HUGE!. I read an article once that said if Barbie was as big as a normal person with the same proportions she would not be able to stand erect becuase of her bust size. If a Bratz doll was as big as a normal person with the same proportions her neck would snap.

they also have a pregnant barbie. I saw an entire wall of them at FAO swartz in Chicago. There were only 3 ken doll displayed.... buzy guys.. their feet must have been really tired.

the dolls had big pregnant bellys with babies inside. you could unscrew the tummy and take the baby out and then screw on the flat tummy. What made me laugh is the ad said the dolls were a good way to introduce a discussion of child birth with your child..... Darn, they forgot to give me my flat tummy to screw on after my last kid, suppose I could still get mattel to send it to me?

Laura 11 years, 9 months ago

Bill Cosby once said the only color Hollywood recognizes is green.

As for white men, black men, or merely Mystic Tan men, they really are brothers under the skin: they don't call, they don't bring flowers, they don't help with the chores, they won't mow the lawn when they're supposed to, nag nag nag.

Seriously, those of you who do stereotype, you probably do so for some personal reason, but at least be aware that it's more than likely a result of your lack of experience or too much experience with one type of person; e.g., your fellow prisoners. As a former defense attorney, I saw people get the hammer for simply being black ALL THE TIME. Don't fool yourselves.

Linda Endicott 11 years, 9 months ago

They used to make black Barbie and Ken dolls. I don't know if they do now or not. But I've never seen a Hispanic Barbie, or an Asian Barbie, or an Eskimo Barbie, or a Native American Barbie, etc., etc...and those Bratz dolls, though they come in different skin tones, have facial features that I've never seen on any real human. Maybe they did that on purpose. Who knows?

There is no such thing as a pure race anymore, not even the white race, xeno. There probably hasn't been for centuries, ever since humans started to explore the world. The races have all intermingled countless times and in countless places, and though there are people who may appear to be predominantly from one race, genetically they probably aren't.

There were black baby dolls and Barbie dolls when I was growing up, and I had both white and black dolls. My mother saw nothing wrong with it, and she taught me that I was no better than anyone else in the world, and vice versa. It's a damn shame that everyone else wasn't taught the same thing.

badger 11 years, 9 months ago

crazyks -

Big city or not, most inequality of opportunity is poverty-based any more. A lot of people point to race as the reason urban youth (who usually happen to be black) don't achieve, but it's an oversimplification, and drawing that line based on race doesn't explain the fairly equivalent conditions (no education, low college attendance, high unwed birth rate, income below poverty levels) found among rural whites.

However, when you erase the race line and draw ones based on money, suddenly the caste system becomes very clear.

It's a truth that most who live in poverty aren't white. But that has less to do with the current existence of racism than it does with a culture of institutionalized poverty, into which racially biased lines drawn fifty or a hundred years ago put people, but in which they're kept by primarily economic considerations.

The parents are poor. They buy or rent somewhere cheap. They don't pay a lot of property taxes, and there's unlikely to be a lot of nice retail to generate sales taxes. So the schools don't get funded as well as they should. Security and teacher salary budgets are cut, meaning the best quality teachers go elsewhere. Supply and extracurricular activity budgets aren't there, so students don't develop the well-rounded skill sets that colleges look for, or even the basic math and language skills necessary to do well on entrance exams. Given their lack of prospects, many students drop out. The hopelessness encourages drinking, drug use, and promiscuity, because when you take away the hope of a better tomorrow, there's little to keep you from basing decisions on what feels good today. So the kids go on, just as their parents have, living somewhere cheap, doing what needs to be done to make ends meet, scraping by with no real hope that it will ever be any different.

Nowhere in that cycle are you required to be black or white for it to keep right on rolling. I think we've broken down all the institutionalized race-based barriers we're going to functionally destroy at this point, and the way to get minorities out of poverty is to provide better tools to get people out of poverty.

The race barriers left are in hearts and minds, like xenophonschild's hatred, and no amount of funding or legislation will end those. But poverty lines are very real, and there's still a lot of good we can do if we take the energy we've used in the past against the culture of institutionalized racism and apply it against the culture of institutionalized poverty.

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

What is weird, is I tried this with my white daughter.... she chose the black doll. Said she ( the black baby) was prettier and nicer.

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

You know sybil, it's sad sometimes to hear how some black leaders talk to kids.

The President of the Topeka Chapter of the NAACP is a bad one. She is on record telling young black men they have NO CHANCE to succeed because society is out to get them.

She wraps herself in a victim mentality that would be funny if is wasn't so scary to know that she actually has influence over peoples lives.

She one time compared her life as a black women in Kansas as comparable to being a holocaust victim.

Sacerdotal 11 years, 9 months ago

Unless you were exposed to the very same environment as this leader you speak of, how can you be sure what she has experienced? How can you know what she feels? For that matter, if you have not been raised as a black person in Kansas or anywhere in America, how could you know enough to even respond to this article?

Good point there. If you are whining and typing, you are probably one of the lucky ones who choose the right parents. The victim mentality is, at times, lame; on the other hand, few people are volunteering to become victims. Find a copy of "Black Like Me" and reread it. P.S.: While the TEACHER would be, technically, Causasian, many modern 'christians' would think him too dark for their taste and shun him.

badger 11 years, 9 months ago

Moira -

I couldn't disagree more.

Anyone, of any race, has a valid perspective on this article. I respond to this article by agreeing with the following absolutely:

"That's all well and good, but the moment you're able to understand that you've been lied to is the moment you bear responsibility for promulgating some truth in reply."

Everyone has the right to speak on race issues, not just those who aren't white. Racial division affects me deeply, just as it affects everyone else. We remain a house divided, a house in which the media driven by some of the cultures (BET, I'm lookin' at you!) promotes some really harmful messages.

I believe that the cultural issues with minorities are deeply rooted in racist tendencies of ages past (and some currently extant), but that now that the minorities do have some control over the message, they have to start accepting some of the responsibility for what that message says. When a black DJ working for a black-run radio station plays the music of a black artist who records on a black-run and black-owned label, I have the hardest time believing that it's white culture that's responsible for the negative and racist content of that music.

If the President of the Topeka chapter of the NAACP actually said to young black men that they can't succeed, someone should remind her that the second (*#&$#^(%& 'A' doesn't stand for 'apathy'.

daddax98 11 years, 9 months ago

sybil do you really think that 3-7 year old children have an intutive sense of inner beauty, that the self image of these children isn't influanced by what they see and hear (and not just on BET), that words and deeds to the contrary will have no effect on if they have a sense of self worth? if so you are as crazy as people say you are!

Linda Endicott 11 years, 9 months ago

Yes, bad experiences contribute to everyone's perceptions, not only of themselves, but of the world around them. This applies to everyone, regardless of race or gender.

What about teenage girls in our modern society, regardless of race, who believe that they are not worthy, not good enough, if they are not thin enough?

What about people in our society that have plastic surgery done, even though it's not medically necessary, just to conform to someone else's idea of what is attractive?

The pyschiatrists don't even know why some people who have many, many bad experiences in childhood rise above them and excel anyway. Others do not. Some who have had bad experiences let those experiences make them bitter, and it becomes a self-fulfiilling prophecy.

Why are some able to excel in spite of hardships, and others are not?

No, I don't think self-esteem is instinctive. Far too many children have been permanently changed by the hurtful comments or beliefs of others. And the younger the child is, the more impact those comments seem to have.

Humans have the instinct for survival, but the concepts of survival and success are often far apart.

betti81 11 years, 9 months ago

i wonder what the child would have done if asked "Are either of these dolls bad?" (I don't know, I am genuinly curious. This of course does not change the feelings evoked by the answer to the original question.)

Mr. Pitts, once again you write a thought provoking column. Thank you. I look forward to reading your columns every chance I get.

Sacerdotal 11 years, 9 months ago

"Black Like Me"?

Is this 1961?

Yes it is, but it still applies in many places. Paint yourself black and try to play golf at Alvamar sometime.

Laura 11 years, 9 months ago

One thing that helps is to send your kids to playgroups and daycare that are diverse. (Sorry to use the "D" word, but it does apply!) Also, avoid being sucked in by advertising. My daughters, who are Korean, have black dolls. If kids are exposed to more than the bland culture of television, they won't be so quick to think white = good and black = bad.

badger 11 years, 9 months ago

Uh, november_sky, actually he is. I think that's exactly what he's talking about when he says:

"To surf the video channels is to be immersed in black culture as conceived by a new generation, a lionization of pimps and gold-diggers, hustlers and thugs who toss the N-word with a gusto that would do the Klan proud. A new generation, afflicted with historical amnesia, blind indifference, and a worship of filthy lucre dances a metaphorical buck and wing, eyes rolling, yassuh bossing, selling itself out, selling its forebears out. Most of all, selling the children out."

Perhaps you should re-read the article...

Moira, you can talk about heirarchy of ideas and power structures all you like, but the author of this piece makes the incredibly valid point that realizing you have a problem requires that you begin to accept your share of responsibility for the continuation of that problem.

If black people (or any other ethnicity; I think I heard some complaint once from a Russian that the only portrayals of her people in the media were as gold-digging mail-order brides and mob thugs...) don't like how they're portrayed in the media, then it becomes incumbent on them to use what power and influence they have to change that perception. And in this country, the people who currently have the most power over how black people are being presented in the most common venues for black culture...are black.

Right now, the hip-hop culture, which was once a rich source of interesting new artistry, is the black American's worst enemy, because it glorifies the thuggery, the abuse of women, the promiscuity, the racism, and many of the stereotypes out there--that apply to perhaps 5, maybe 10% of actual black people--but are the overwhelming media image young black Americans see for their culture. I can't help but ask myself if that does more or less damage, somehow, than not having a black person on "Friends" did for all those years.

With regard to the channels that are generally considered the primary avenues of black culture (because not only are the actors black, most of the writers, producers, and directors are, too), I look at the thinly veiled "Amos and Andy" stereotypes on BET or UPN, the exaggerated eye-rolls from the men over their gold-digging shallow women, and then I look at the black characters on more mainstream networks (who may be tokens but at least have some dignity) and I'm reluctant to accept that cultural blame.

I'm totally willing to hold white America accountable for the prejudices it still promulgates. But I have to be met part way on this. We're no longer the ones putting out the most derogatory, hateful, and stereotyped images.

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

It would seem to me that most 2-5 year old black children would spend the majority of their time with other black people.... mom - dad family.... so who is giving them the message that black is bad?

Do you wonder why white women tan, get lip injections, perms and butt pads??... so we can mimic the exotic beauty of the black woman.

Posted by Moira (anonymous) on September 19, 2006 at 3:50 p.m. (Suggest removal)


I do not recall the current NAACP leader making statements such as asIliveandbreathe claims. It could very well be an error in interpretation.

could be....Perception is a real issue for the pres of Topeka NAACP. She strikes me as very paraniod, She interprets questions and disagreements to be a violent attack on her personally. She will work to get you fired from your job or at the very least demoted.

She writes for the Topeka Capitol Journal. You can look up the articles where she laments her victim status and reinforces the idea that black men in particular will never succeed in America. The Web site also published a letter talking about CODE WORDS that white people use to marginalize people of color. Does that not sound paraniod to you?

Even though the NAACP is supposed to all about freedom of speach, I don't PERCEIVE her to be really big on open dialogue....

I don't mean to single her out. Other even more widely known black leaders do the same thing. Listen to some of the things coming out of Ray Nagin, Jessie Jackson, Al Sharpton, Louis Farakahn. They can paint a very depressing picture. And if that's what you start hearing from birth, you can't help but fullfill the prediction.

I prefer to point to strong-successfull people like Condi Rice, to role model for my kids.

xenophonschild 11 years, 9 months ago

I've regarded blacks, and particularly black males, as enemies most of my life, and am not inclined or see any reason to change my opinion of them.

They are, for the most part, nihilistic misfits and do not have place in American life or society.

Slavery was the original sin; it broke the plate, spilt the milk, let the cow out of the barn - and nothing can make it whole again. Blacks will never be accepted as part of this country by white males . . . at least not in our lifetimes. As long as there are white males whose faces go blank every time they see a white woman with a black male - which is about all "interracial relationships" are - basic toleration is about all anyone can expect.

Confrontation 11 years, 9 months ago

xenophonschild: You are a clear example of what's wrong in America. I am hoping that your disgusting and racist views die with you and your generation. Unfortunately, trash like you will teach hate to your children. Your descriptions of white men is exactly the reason so many white women are looking towards men of other races. You think you are superior and that YOU are entitled to everything you want. Not every white man is like this (at least not in public). When are people like you going to wake up and realize that it's all about skin tone? Dark skin, light skin, who cares? You want to keep your "power" in society by treating others like crap. I hope you live a tortuous rest of your life, filled with hate and great loss.

xenophonschild 11 years, 9 months ago


Whatever. Black males are the enemy; their choice, not mine. Their response is a human response to the indignities of slavery - Jim Crow and all that came from it - but I'm a white male and they are the enemy.

I'm deeply offended that so many white women run with blacks - it is an insult to our race - and look forward to the day when such is no longer socially acceptable. Refer back to my contention that most black males are nilhilist misfits, and wonder at their penchant for white women, at the exclusion of their own kind. What's wrong with black women, that so many black males run after white women?

geekin_topekan 11 years, 9 months ago

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davisnin 11 years, 9 months ago

I have $5,000 to invest from my title loan on my 95 Acura. Can anyone suggest a good brand of rims? Hopefully this will be what turns around my lot in society. At least that's what the latest Ying Yang Twins album seemed to indicate. Chuch

Mike Ford 11 years, 9 months ago

For many years, I worked at a restaurant at 17th and Washburn in Topeka. I saw and embraced the "Hood" up close and personal. Like the lyrics in the Living Colour song, "Open letter to a landlord" off of the album "Vivid", I saw the beauty and brutality of existence there on a daily basis, in spite of assumptive and dismissive stereotypes. This area was home to poor White, Black, Mexican, and Native American People. Everyone in this sentence has always had to deal with a measuring stick of economic existence that was built to kneecap them and hold them in the hood. Get a job at Westridge Mall in the day, be profiled by Topeka Police or have the Simon Properties People make you cross Wanamaker Street instead of getting off in their parking lot for a food court job. Be followed by wannabe security cops and profiled in Penney's or the Jone's Store or Dlliards. And yet the people who are "Priviliged" enough not to be profiled have the audacity to tell the victims of their darwinistic behavoir not to complain about bad treatment. Beyond that, Public and Private schools are not required or equipped to tell the whole story of this country, warts and all. they don't want to hear about Selma, Tulsa, or Little Rock in the pre-1970 era. They want the luxury of a short memory so that they can deny connection to racial atrocities of the 20th centuries. History is not connected to their reality or curriculum. It's not playing a "Victim". It's about existing as a victim with a memory intact amongst the descendants of your oppressors and tormentors who are still busy trying to torment your memories away and absolve their conscience and connection. Opportunity will only be realized in minority communities when the White concept of success is tossed and minority concepts of academia and community success are arrived at. It is a battle of the thoughts and minds that will hopefully end in the sovereign view of history and opportunity outside of Euro-American history and denial.

xenophonschild 11 years, 9 months ago


Nope. You overlook the eternal reality that the rich always eat the poor - except in our country, where they are required to do so through due process.

A very real, basic reality that all the civil rights initiatives and political correctness dictates the federal government and polite society embrace cannot erase is that white males do not like black males . . . just as black males entertain only varying degrees of quiet disdain for most white males.

White European history is our history; we embrace it - the good and the bad. Mostly it's good. Too bad you got the short end of the stick, but that's the breaks.

xenophonschild 11 years, 9 months ago

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badger 11 years, 9 months ago

Sasquatch, I do agree with you that it's more about money than about race. Poverty is truly where inequality shows itself.

Speaking of inequality, I disagree with you that we're not all equal. We all are essentially equal. Some are smarter, some are stronger, some are happier, some are healthier, but essentially we're all equals. We don't all have equal opportunities, and that's where the problem is. But to say we're not equals undercuts the importance of working towards that level of equal opportunity.

Surely, someone from Overland Park (on average; there's quite a bit of poverty in OP most people aren't aware of) who decides to turn his life around has a greater likelihood of accomplishing that than someone from Watts. But there comes a point at which you also have to admit that it's some of the ingrained attitudes the black community has embraced and displayed that contribute to the expectation that thug life is an easy way out, and put forth that it's a realistic expectation that you'll be able to get out of poverty without an education and lots of hard work.

White culture and white power structures have a lot to answer for with regard to racism, but more than that our overall culture has a lot to answer for because of how we've created an established culture of poverty, regardless of race.

xenophonschild 11 years, 9 months ago


Good post. It would be good for people to think more about the ramifications of a culture of poverty . . . but compare and contrast with other countries, other societies.

Living in an Egyptian slum is probably worse than living in central Detroit.

as_I_live_and_breathe 11 years, 9 months ago

Posted by my_black_lab_told_me_so (anonymous) on September 19, 2006 at 8:36 p.m. (Suggest removal)

Do they make black Barbie dolls?

Is there a black Ken doll too? If so, is he straight?

Yes they do... yes there is a black ken,,, but him and barbie broke up so... I think he lives in a van down by the river.

katser 11 years, 8 months ago

You were speaking of it being difficult to find a job. The reason why many other minorities are successful, as far as employment is concerned, is they DO NOT seek employment from people who don't like them. Other ethnic groups many times are employed among their own pwople. I'm thinking of the Jewish population which was and still is reviled as much as the Black population, and also the Asian population. They are both groups that are close knit, and for the most part, own their own businesses. Because of this, they hire their own people. This is the remedy for Black unemployment. Not all blacks can work for white people, government (which isn't white, it is all of us) or other ethnic groups. We need viable, thriving, honest Black businesses in our own neighborhoods who will hire other Blacks. The people working in these places, as well as the owner or owners, need to treat whoever shops with them decently. Bad treatment by Black merchants has run Black shoppers away from Black businesses. At least that is the case where I live, and has been the case for some time. Blacks have to help one another. Others do not care whether we have employment or not. This also goes back to the low self esteem mentioned in the above article. That is why we do not help one another and treat each other badly or rudely. It is a hard thing to say, but through generations of conditioning by the mainstream culture, we don't like one another. Most won't admit it. That is why the little girl chose the white doll. She doesn't like herself. Each Black mother in this country has to begin to prepare herself for this, and teach her children that there is NOTHING wrong with being Black. NOTHING!!!! Stop this crap about "good hair" and "light skin" and being white. There's nothing wrong with white people or other ethnic groups, but damn, stop wishing for their hair and features. Our kids have picked up on this, and it has travelled from one generation to another. I think that may be one reason Black men, in some cases, prefer white women. All their lives they've been taught white women are beautiful. Black parents should stop this way of thinking as soon as possible. We have to fight it. It doesn't mean we are hating anyone, it means we are feeling good about ourselves. I am from the generation the author of the above article spoke of. I remember the 1960's well, and I wore an afro. I was in high school and college when The Movement was occurring. At that time I thought I had seen the last of this "good hair" mess. There's nothing wrong with naturally straight hair, or fair skin, but the longing in some Black women especially for it is abnormal. This is particularly the case in the inner cities where the parents don't fight this way of thinking. It is all very depressing and yes, as the author said above "heartbreaking." It has to stop, and on a personal level I plan to do all I can to stop it.

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