Black Children, Black Bias Conditioning

If I had a young Black daughter I wouldn’t give her a white doll to play with and I’d request that friends and family do the same.  That’s not prejudice, that’s ethnic preservation.  Pop culture bombards Black females with images that imply they’re irrelevent and that they’re inferior to white females.  Some Black females react by attempting to erase their ethnicity via bleaching creams, light contact lens and long fake hair in order to aspire to a white standard of beauty that Black females are unfairly judged by.

I wouldn’t offer my daughter a white doll because I would want to build up her Black female self-esteem and not risk conditioning her to believe that white skin, long straight hair and light eyes are superior to kinky hair, Black features and Black skin.  I wouldn’t want  Black girls (who own white dolls) to wind up brainwashing themselves to reject their own image in favor of the white girls within their embrace, unless the Black girls are light-skinned and happen to look like the dolls.

I’m not implying that my hypothetical daughter would forgo white female friendships.  I’m not suggesting that nor would I block any positive friendship.

Last year I saw a young Black mother pushing her daughter in a stroller and referring to her by what sounded like an African name.  The brown-skinned toddler was holding a white doll and stroking her long blond hair.  What a disturbing dichotomy.  This young mother appeared to be unaware of how important it is to provide Black girls with Black dolls and thereby condition them to admire and adore their own images.  Especially since pop culture has a problem with the fact that Black females are not white females and it punishes us for this very “sin.”  Blacks need to counter that in every way possible and Blacks dolls are a good place to start.

A Black girl around nine or ten entered a bus wearing a bone straight pony tail pinned smack in the middle of her short afro.  In fact, her hair was so short if it had been straightened it still wouldn’t have been long enough to pull back into a rubber band. She was wearing two drastically different hair textures and two drastically different lengths.  But she didn’t care.  All she wanted was a pony tail even if the math didn’t make sense.  She’s hammered with messages that imply long straight hair is desirable, kinky hair (especially if it’s short) is not, so she opted for a hair combo.  She was a beautiful child who just needed to have her afro trimmed.  Even if her parents praise her natural beauty regularly, they’re up against an avalanche of images that contradict them daily.

I watched a Black woman exit a McDonald’s with a young boy in tow.  Her long fake ponytail swayed back and forth like a metronome with each step she took.  The boy, no more than four-years-old, was hypnotized by it as he followed behind his mother.  I wondered if this was subliminally programming him to reject natural Black hair, and way down the road steer him into the arms of someone who had long straight hair.  Sometimes Blacks are unwittingly complicit in imposing a negative Black bias on Black children.


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