“Hello Emmitt–I am the ‘black lady’ to which you are referring. I’m sorry you don’t like my ethnic hair. And no I don’t have cancer. I’m a non-smoking, 5’3, 121 lbs, 25 mile a week running, 37.5 year old woman, and I’m in perfectly healthy physical condition.
“I am very proud of my African-American ancestry which includes my hair. For your edification: traditionally our hair doesn’t grow downward. It grows upward. Many Black women use strong straightening agents in order to achieve a more European grade of hair and that is their choice. However in my case I don’t find it necessary. I’m very proud of who I am and the standard of beauty I display. Women come in all shapes, sizes, nationalities, and levels of beauty. Showing little girls that being comfortable in the skin and HAIR God gave me is my contribution to society. Little girls (and boys for that matter) need to see that what you look like isn’t a reason to not achieve their goals.
“Conforming to one standard isn’t what being American is about and I hope you can embrace that.
“Thank you for your comment and have a great weekend and thank for watching.”
That’s former KTBS-TV meteorologist, Rhonda Lee responding to a comment about hair on the channel’s Facebook page. This comment:
the black lady that does the news is a very nice lady.the only thing is she needs to wear a wig or grow some more hair. im not sure if she is a cancer patient. but still its not something myself that i think looks good on tv.
All I kept thinking to myself is that Lee’s response is exactly what many white people say they want from Black people. They want us to explain our strange ways to them. Explain our strange hair that they love to touch, explain our “attitudes”, and why we’re so damn “angry” all the time. Here you have someone who did that in a nice, and professional way. Does she get praised for handling a difficult comment well? No. She gets fired. Damned if you, damned if you don’t. Meanwhile, as of today, the original comment by “Emmitt” is still on KTBS’ FB page, AND to add insult to injury the station “liked” his comment:
But hey, race had nothing to with it.
Tags: Black hair
, morning musings