Response to a friends facebook post about the image above
Thank you Crystal F. I’m not well versed on ‘the black men in dresses/ Omar Epps controversy’. I will look into that. In my opinion it is a form of black on black crime for one black person to tell the other how to be black. I don’t understand the reference to African culture based on this image. A picture not of an inanimate object, but of a real live human being (go figure). Do we even know what gender pronoun this person prefers? All of you may not understand this fellow, person of colors choice to dress scantily, nor does your lack of understanding justify your opinions about them. It is not this person responsibility to help hold your ignorance. It is your ignorance and yours alone to cope with. Everyone’s comments seem to stem from some arbitrary beliefs rather than from actual facts. Do we know this persons first name? Your laughter negates any real grounds for an argument that I’m not sure you all even understand. For the one person to say that men should be men as intended is like telling a child with ambiguous genetalia they are not human because they are neither male or female. Clothing traditions are wildly different across the continent among men and women. And in many African societies, men and women are responsible for different stages of cloth production, native styles, and customs.
The dashiki pictured under Crystals comment derived around late 1950’s from a Hausa word danchiki, an inner dress worn under a flowing gown. Natives men wore it as a shirt covering the entire chest as well as in a much longer version called the grand boubou. They were loose fitting but light enough to offer protection for the sun and heat. If the dashiki from the late 1950’s is our standard for ancestral ‘honoring’ then we are all lost and missing a good 300 + years of traditions, practices, and clothes. All of the views here are heterosexist in nature. Heterosexism is a system of privilege based on sexual orientation with the overt subordination of any other group outside of heteronormative communities around the globe. You all are not only practicing internalized racism, you’re using your privilege at the expense of homosexual communities in this circumstance. All of the loose and hateful comments about the assumption of this persons sexual orientation and their lack of honor for their ancestors with no facts, creating a discriminative dialogue in a public forum for others to feast upon this innocent person is blasphemous in my opinion. And who gives you all the right? I say, IF YOU AIN’T HEALING THERE IS NO PLACE FOR YOU HERE! We are making each other sick, harboring hate like this that even modern medicine and ancient homeopathy can do nothing for us. This is a people process that we are all capable of partaking in the healing of. An opportunity to hold space for others and their differences within each others own worlds. To grant acceptance into a world other than ones own. That is the love and safety all living beings deserve on this planet.