My Response To Don Imus
My aunt gave me this doll when I was a little girl. From the sayings on her sweatshirt like "Say It Loud" and "I'm Proud", you can tell that I grew up in the late 60's. My parents were adamant about me having black dolls, which were a pretty new thing back then. They heard about the study showing that little black girls preferred white dolls to black dolls, which showed how little they valued themselves.
I still have this doll and think she is just adorable. I guess Don Imus would call her a "nappy-headed ho" because she is black and female.
I do not think he has learned his lesson. If those words fell from his mouth so easily when he saw the accomplished young black women of the Rutger's women's basketball team, then I don't think his mindset has changed so much in just a few days. That is how he views black females.
Life in general is difficult for all people. We all have mortality to deal with. There is sickness, natural disasters, violence. For women, we all have another whole level of issues to contend with. There is still much disrespect and violence against women of all races in the world and in this country. And being a black woman in this country, you can add another layer of difficulty. I'm not complaining that is just life. And for the most part, I deal with it and move on. But sometimes, I do feel the need to share my point of view. This is one of them.
For Mr. Imus to suddenly feel the need to refer to these women as "hoes" shows an enormous disrespect for all women. The National Organization For Women (NOW) has an Action Alert posted on their website.
I think Mr. Imus should be fired. I sent two emails stating so, one here and I also sent one to my local radio station. NOW makes it very easy to literally send a message to the powers that be. And when he added "nappy headed" it shows his particular disdain for black women. Black women's hair in its natual state has been disparaged in this country for as long as we have been here. We as black women know what the idealized beauty of perfect hair is and we know that it is not ours.
Kiri Davis, is a very talented young black woman who made a short film called "A Girl Like Me." This is an amazing and heartbreaking film showing young black women in America and their struggles with self-acceptance as they grow into adulthood. Please watch the video here.
This short film is a finalist for an award on CosmoGirl.* With Mr. Imus making such horrible comments, he made it that much harder for every little black girl who ever watches tv or listens to the radio.
*Updated 4/13/07 - The voting in the film contest has ended. *