I haven’t had an opportunity to view OWN’s Dark Girls, but I didn’t need a documentary, a special report, or bulletin to tell me what life is like as a dark skinned woman in America.
Some of the reviews I have seen all read “is this topic still relevant?”
As long as dark skinned folks exist and intolerance is exercised, the answer is yes.
Ironically, this is also the 25th anniversary of Spike Lee’s School Daze. For those who don’t recall, School Daze chronicled the light/dark skin debate with disdainful epithets of “wanna-be” and “jiggaboo” . Yes,ladies and gentleman, no longer is dominant society needed to play “black face” because majority of the criticism regarding shades of blackness are done right in the African American community.
I was born a dark skin baby, raised as a dark skin girl, and live as a dark skin PROUD woman. Transitioning in age as a girl with a particular shade of chocolate wasn’t popular when I was a child. I didn’t have any friends because nobody wanted to play with the dark skin girl, as if my complexion was a contagious leprosy. I was not prepared to face the world and how to conquer the ignorance of others. I saw myself as the world viewed me, ugly, undesirable, confused, and rejected. I was invisible until someone needed a laugh or boost of social superiority. My dark skin was the punchline of almost every joke and I was always the topic of Snapz. This caused me to literally hate people and become a social introvert.
I can’t say I desired to be light skinned or white, but I wanted to be seen for who I was. In that, I decided at the age of 12 that in all that I did I would always be the best Although I excelled academically and was an athlete, I always worked twice as hard as what was expected or average. I was determined to not only be noticed, but respected. I felt a sense of pride in my work ethic and felt as though I had earned my way through where I stood.
But was that enough?
“You’re Pretty To Be Dark Skinned….” To Be Continued