Jill Scott has stirred up a debate between Essence readers after discussing her views on interracial dating with the magazine, stating that she "felt a little wince" when her African-American friend told her he had married a white woman.
In a post titled "Commentary: Jill Scott Talks Interracial Dating," Scott explains that she believes the "wince" she felt does not come from her personal upbringing, but rather from the notion "that for women of color, this very common "wince" has solely to do with the African story in America," and the historical implications behind interracial relationships.
"When our people were enslaved, 'Massa' placed his Caucasian woman on a pedestal," Scott says, "She was spoiled, revered and angelic, while the Black slave woman was overworked, beaten, raped and farmed out like cattle to be mated. She was nothing and neither was our Black man." She goes on to point out that black men were "lynched, beaten, jailed or shot to death" for looking at white women, and discusses the struggles that black men and women faced together, arguing that "these harsh truths lead to what we really feel when we see a seemingly together brother with a Caucasian woman and their children. That feeling is betrayed."
While Scott ultimately points out that she's not trying to hurt anyone with her thoughts, but is just expressing her opinion on the matter (she ends the piece with "I'm just sayin."), commenters at Essence have already taken sides, with some supporting Scott's opinion and others berating her for her words:
This to me is bullshit. I am a black woman who could care less about who or what a black man chooses for a wife. He has his own life to live and I have mine. It would be hypocritical of me to have that "wince" that Scott was talking about. Why? It's because I am open to dating and marrying interracially. Yes slavery happened and lets not forget it, but the whites that I choose to surround myself with should not be put in the same category as their forefathers who raped our ancestors. They are TOTALLY different. There are other issues that are more important to talk about than this one, especially in the black community....sorry.
Jill's comments mirror what a lot of black women feel; sorry if it makes some of you uncomfortable. It doesn't make her racist, it makes her honest.
I have non-black girlfriends who date black men—some exclusively—and you know what? They experience the same sh!t with some of these men that we do. They still deal with his infidelity. They still deal with his money problems. They still deal with commitment issues. And most of these guys are the "educated" brothas we THINK are a good catch and resent "losing" them to white girls. Puhleez! Good riddance.
Don't assume that just because a black man has a white or Asian woman on his arms that he treats her better than he would a black woman. Some black men are not going to be decent to ANY woman.
When I hear the phrase beige is the new black I wince.
I can admit that I prefer not to see black men with white women, whether they are successful or not. As black women, we have had to endure criticism and swallow to much of our pride in comparison to white women. I have seen some handsome white men, but there is nothing better than that sexy black men :)— attitude, strength, and personality. Furthermore, I think black men should consider some of the things Jill Scott mentioned; all that black women have been through, makes it easier for us to relate and understand each other— a feeling I believe the white woman will never experience.
This article though well written is completely out of place. The thought process is yesterday's excuse for a world that has morphed into something that transcends racial and cultural lines. The hurts of the past can not continue to cause "winces" except in small minded individuals that choose to hold on to past atrocities as something to carry over to the next generation. I agree the past was filled and in some instances continues to hold on to some "bad habits." However, As an Afro-Latino married to a White Woman, color had no place in my selection. I had previously been married to an African American Woman who found it her place in life to always remind me that I would "be better suited for a white woman," because I did not talk or act black. I have dated many women outside my race yet my selection for marriage had nothing to do with that. Although I never intended to marry someone white, we fell in love and it has turned out to be the best loving relationship I have ever been in. Our commonality is our education, beliefs, and the genuine love of each other irrespective of race. The heart knows no color and someone of Ms Scott's stature who sings of love should be saddened to have these feelings.
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Whether you agree with Scott or not, her commentary has certainly sparked quite a bit of discussion on the topic. So what do you think, commenters? Have you ever experienced "the wince" that Scott discusses? Or do you disagree with her views on interracial dating?