banned locs

When Our Hair Isn’t Good Enough for Us, It Shouldn’t Be Good Enough for Kylie Jenner

How dare Andy Cohen refer to Amandla Stenberg as a “jackhole” for voicing a valid criticism when he doesn’t understand the context and origin of her POV.  How dare the media continue to paint Amandla as the “angry black woman” stereotype by taking every opportunity to refer to the situation between her and Kylie as a feud.  There is no feud; there is a wonderfully conscious and opinionated young woman voicing her opinion on an issue that is relevant to her and other people of color. 

Growing up as a black woman, we are constantly bombarded with the idea that our hair isn’t good enough.  Relaxers, hot combs, flat irons, Brazilian keratin hair smoothing treatments…anything to make our hair fit a standard of beauty that is not our own.  We are told that our braids, our locs, our kinks, our curls are too ethnic–too other–too unprofessional for the corporate world.  Many of us have been discriminated against and denied jobs or promotions because of our hair.  Many of us have had to bend to unjust expectations about our appearance to keep the bills paid.  Our own universities have (I’m looking at you Hampton) banned our locs and cornrows and encouraged conformity in the name of helping us succeed.  What does our hair have to do with our abilities?

If our hair isn’t good enough for us, why should it be good enough for the white women who adopt our styles?  Why should the Bo Dereks and Kylie Jenners of the world be celebrated as fashion icons for wearing their hair in cornrows while I might be denied a job at FedEx because of my curls?  

DAY 3105

Jalsa, Mumbai                Oct 1,  2016               Fri/Sat  2:14 am



Birthday - EF Shubhi Jha Kansal

Saturday, October 1, 2016

And so our greetings go out to Shubhi on her birthday .. wishes for happiness and all that is good and prosperous for you .. love from the Ef




I laze in the morning after the night .. and determine the temperament .. work beckons but the mind plays truant and in lethargic eminence .. so predominant is the desire that time folds past and deregulates the routine .. it is disturbing to be able to accept that, but it is the truth ! So schedules go awry, temperaments fly in another direction, and the slumbered body tries heavily to retain stability and form .. it is tough, but then nothing ever comes easy in life ..

Part of what cannot be partitioned is the forming of musical elements in forthcoming Sarkar 3 .. and so this non musical and non believer in God, Shri Ram Gopal Varma, the revolutionary genius of change in the art of presentation and subject in films, finds his way to the studio where we design of some sort what needs to be put together ..

One, also in grave bravado, spells out and plays some of the madness that Rohan&Vinayak and yours truly did during our incredibly ‘jamming’ workshops, some months ago .. and it is a treat to see and hear RGV actually moving his involuntary body to the acknowledged rhythms of our systematically bad effort.

It is an enchanting moment .. for it is not often that we get to see this side of this maker Mr RGV .. who has been addressing me as SARKAAAAAR from the day of release of the film .. release of the first one .. that is ..

BBC wishes to talk to me .. and so I rush there to do so .. talk to me about PINK .. but by now it is a given that you go prepared for the least attention to the purpose of the interview, that of promoting PINK, but to be in the know of all else that is current in the news or not, so that that becomes better material than the ‘pinkvilla’ ..

So .. the strike of the Indian Army at the LoC .. the ban on Pakistani actors in our films .. the worsening of the condition of the industry since all major production houses close down due lack of lucrative business .. the certification of the Censors .. and on and on and on …

I have a question here .. what is your opinion on the question you ask .. we never get to see or hear about it ever .. so just because it is your prerogative to question since that is your profession, do you not also wish to express your feelings .. and would you be up for its scrutiny .. as you would do us ..?

The entire country is incensed and angry at the killings of our soldiers inside our territory .. what do you expect me to say ..? and what does any nation loving passionate and proud Indian wishes to say ? No, tell me ..?

All of you are intelligent and articulate and mature individuals .. you say .. why are you asking me .. “may I tell you why” ( pardon the refer to PINK dialogue of mine in the court ) .. because you are interested in the story, not the feeling .. you do feel .. not that you do not ..but you would rather get its first endorsement from a saleable entity, because that would bring you the sponsor for the show ..

And yes I shall have my opinions too, but it shall be my prerogative whether I wish to make it public or not .. for, in todays cut throat competition, where media heads and anchors openly criticise and pull down competitor fellow journalists, something that was unheard of before, the idea of a story can often lie in the contortions of the spoken word by the interviewed .. there is therefore a great degree of guardedness in what one demonstrates or says publicly especially in the varied media forms .. a word misplaced deliberately here and there and you have an entirely different rendition of the spoken !

An example from an old fictitious humourous story :

Pope goes to USA, lands at JFK airport and runs into media at the exit :

Media : Welcome Celestial Highness to New York ..

Pope : Thank you Son .. and may the Lord bless you ..

Media : Would you be visiting any discotheques while in NY ?

Pope : hehe ( a condescending quiver of a smile ).. Are there any discotheques in New York ( genuine disbelief ) ??

Headlines in the paper front page the next day -

“Pope lands in New York asks immediately on arrival : Are their any discotheques in New York” ??!!


You get the point ..

I definitely do and so will many others I know .. 

So its time for the ‘poetry in motion’ that I witnessed at the trial of MIRZYA .. a stunning presentation in vivid visuals of extreme brilliance, and a novel way to tell a story ..

My love for my Ef undiminished and unchallenged ..

Amitabh Bachchan

White people wonder why hair is such a big issue

Because Black people (especially girls) catch shit constantly. Don’t believe me? Here have some examples:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/22/farryn-johnson-fired-hooters-blond-highlights-_n_4142108.html (Fired over highlights for being “Unnatural” while other girls had blonde and red weren’t natural)

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/09/26/schools-bans-dreadlocks-afros/2874895/ ( this school attempted to BAN locs and afro styles of sorts because they are “faddish”)

And let’s not forget about Rhonda Lee, the black meteorologist that got fired for defending her right to where her natural hair to work.

AFROS, TWIST OUTS, BANTU KNOTS, WRAPS, LOCS, TWISTS…I DON’T GIVE A DAMN! IF YOU ARE NOT BLACK (ESPECIALLY IF YOU ARE WHITE) AND YOU TRY TO WEAR STYLES THAT WE USE ON OUR NATURAL HAIR?

YOU. CATCH. HELL.

I FEEL NO SYMPATHY FOR YOU!

WE ARE THE ONES WHO ARE OPPRESSED, THAT HAVE OUR HAIR CALLED UGLY AND HAVE OUR HAIR CRITICIZED AND LOSE JOBS OVER OUR HAIR.

WE GO THROUGH HELL BECAUSE IT’S NOT BONE STRAIGHT OR DOESN’T MEET THE CRITERIA OF EURO-CENTRIC BEAUTY.

SO WHEN YOU RUN AROUND WITH THESE STYLES LIKE THEY ARE A “FAD” WE WON’T BE SILENCED!

THIS IS OUR CULTURE AND OUR HISTORY! GET YOUR OWN AND STOP TRYING TO DEGRADE US BECAUSE WE DON’T WANT TO LIVE UP TO WHITE STANDARDS!