Something I've noticed over the years is how much injustice people of color endure on a daily basis, but something else that I've noticed is how so many people also turn a blind eye to those things when trying to adopt our culture as a whole.
I am so proud to be black, but there are so many things that come with having a darker pigment of skin that I could do without.
To our law enforcement, our skin serves as a threat to them, with many white officers gunning us down before we are even told why we were stopped in the first place. To our current president, we are seen as stupid, incapable, and unable to get things done on our own. I guess I write all of this to say, I wish black people were protected, valued, and celebrated the same way our culture is because we as black people sure as hell aren't.
Today, we see people everywhere wanting to adopt the black culture and do everything in their power to look 'black' because to them, that makes them more exotic and interesting. Whether it be paying hundreds of dollars on tanning products and procedures to make their skin darker, getting plastic surgery to enhance features that mimic natural black bodies, or paying to get their hair done in black hairstyles to look more ethnic, the people we see doing this don't care about what people of color go through on a daily basis due to the color of our skin, they just want to claim certain elements of the African-American aesthetic.
Our society as a whole has a lot of work to do because we can't keep condoning behavior that ultimately continues to oppress people of color. I want us to do better, and I want us to be able to celebrate each other and all of our ethnicities, rather than take from each other without recognizing and listening to those who are marginalized.
As a black woman, I often feel unheard, and that's why I decided to write about this because I want people of all races to understand what our society has become. We have the power to change the way these things go, but we must first hold each other accountable, and that starts with calling out the people who celebrate the cultures of people of color, without celebrating them as the people they are.