Because gay isn’t only 17 year old white kids that come from middle to upper class homes. And Black Love isn’t just straight couples that enforce gender roles and women with perfect bodies, a quiet tongue, and a womb always ready to create. This is also the face of Black Love. And its beautiful. -ShiShi

6

White women elected Trump. Black, brown, trans and queer women have been doing this for far longer and at far greater peril.” Any kind of real solidarity from allies has got to start with acknowledging these truths.

Acknowledge white privilege, and acknowledge who has been fighting for equality from day one, and then use that privilege to help put marginalized people in charge.

7

White women need to deal with the fact that most of you voted for Trump. It’s the not the job of black women or any marginalised and oppressed person to take responsibility for the actions of their oppressor or to educate their oppressor.

7

These are self portraits. And that’s important because I believe that images are a glimpse at the magic that happens when the mind, body, and spirit connect. The camera is only an extension of the eye, and this is how I see myself.

A few months ago I heard Kathleen Cleaver, a former Black Panther, speak at a local museum and as she spewed her feelings about “Formation”, calling it pornography, I recall feeling a disappointment so strong it nearly felt like grief. I felt similarly reading bell hooks’ criticisms of Beyoncé. I felt that ultimately they were expressing their disdain for me, women like me, and my/our own brand of feminism and autonomous expression. I don’t fit into any one box. Sometimes I am poised and polite. Sometimes I’m a bitch. Sometimes I am homely. Sometimes I’m scantily clad. Regardless, I am always wanting more for us. More respect, more love, more space and freedom. My attire does not negate that.

Kathleen Cleaver called Beyoncé’s lens, and ultimately my own, mindless. She called it disgusting. And the dank thickness of her tone has fixed itself in my memory. Wedged itself in my psyche. And I find myself, ever since, feeling apprehensive about being visible in my own skin.

These are self portraits. And that’s important because shame and internalized misogynoir are real. Respectability politics are real. And while I am a woman who can be agreeable to a fault, I’ve never had a talent for conforming.

This is not pornography. These are self portraits.

And that’s important.

That’s imperative.

Emerald Shaw
June 2016

We see movies in which people are represented as being in love who never talk with one another, who fall into bed without ever discussing their bodies, their sexual needs, their likes and dislikes. Indeed, the message received from the mass media is that knowledge makes love less compelling; that it is ignorance that gives love its erotic and transgressive edge. These messages are often brought to us by profiteering producers who have no clue about the art of loving, who substitute their mystified visions because they do not really know how to genuinely portray loving interaction.
—  “all about love: New Visions” by bell hooks
Hey Black Girl...

It’s okay to cry.

It’s okay not to trust white people from jump.

It’s okay to be loud.

It’s okay to wear weave.

It’s okay to have depression.

It’s okay to walk around in your bonnet.

It’s okay to be angry. You have every right.

It’s okay to place your needs above men.

It’s okay not to be interested in men whatsoever.

It’s okay to be fat.

It’s okay to twerk.

It’s okay not to have “traditional” education.

It’s okay to be brilliant. It’s okay not to be.

It’s okay to be shy.

It’s okay to be vegan.

It’s okay to be mean.

It’s okay to be quiet.

It’s okay to be a boss ass bitch.

It’s okay to be ghetto.

It’s okay to be a single mom.

It’s okay not to desire marriage.

It’s okay to speak your mind.

It’s okay to be selfish. You are not a mule.

It’s okay not to believe in God.

It’s okay not to code-switch. AAVE is valid.

It’s okay to have a mental illness.

It’s okay to ask for help.

It’s okay not to be conventionally attractive.

It’s okay to be sexually liberated.

It’s okay to just be.

You are valid.

Your ideas, your mind, your personality, your lifestyle, your hobbies, your aspirations, and your abilities are all valid.

Don’t ever forget it.

I love you ❤️

Tracee Ellis Ross Dedicates Her Golden Globe Win To Hollywood’s Underrepresented

“This is for all the women, women of color and colorful people, whose stories, ideas, thoughts are not always considered worthy and valid and important,” she said. “But I want you to know: I see you. We see you.”

She continued, “It is an honor to be on this show, ‘Black-ish,’ to continue expanding the way we are seen and known and to show the magic and the beauty and the sameness of a story and stories that are outside of where the industry usually looks.”

Ross also took a moment to appreciate that she is able to survive in Hollywood after the age of 40, something many other female actresses have struggled to do. “It’s nice at 44. I like it here. This is great. Thank you,” she said.

Read the full piece and watch the video here