Hear Our Cry
Why must we repeatedly expose our trauma to the world? What does it take for us to be understood? If our butts aren’t big enough, curls not loose enough, skin not light enough, and over the height of 5’6, we are deemed undesirable and unworthy of love, affection, and protection. Black women across the world are repeatedly disrespected, disregarded, and degraded. This is nothing new, but in 2020 we have ALL witnessed the disgusting mockery and dehumanization of Black women. Between Breonna Taylor, Megan Thee Stallion, and the Tik Tok trends that contain unwarranted disrespect towards Black women, 2020 has shown its ass and everything in between.
The Megan Thee Stallion and Tory Lanez situation has been one of the biggest disappointments that I have ever seen when it comes to the disrespect of Black women. As a victim of violence, Megan was forced into sharing her trauma to the world, because individuals (particularly Black men) denied her truth and her voice. This is not an attack on Black men, but simply a request that you listen and HEAR Black women. Black women will always be the glue that holds the Black community together. Time and time again we see Black women speak their truth in moments of vulnerability, abuse, and danger, but no one is there to protect and uplift us but ourselves. This could potentially stem from the “strong black woman” narrative that has been internalized within our community, but quite frankly no one should have to continuously prove themselves to be a victim of violence when there is hard evidence that they have been hurt.
Yes, I understand that there are always two sides to a story, but we are not the judge nor the jury. No, we were not there that night, but following the sequence of events that were released to the public that night, it is clear that Megan was a victim of violence. In the case of Megan Thee Stallion, I think of it like this: If Megan says Tory shot her, then why is it up for discussion and debate on whether or not he did or did not? Why don’t we take her word? In her recent op-ed in the New York Times, she states that “even as a victim, [she has] been met with skepticism and judgment. The way people have publicly questioned and debated whether [she] played a role in [her] own violent assault proves that [her] fears about discussing what happened were, unfortunately, warranted.” Not only is this a sentiment that I share with Megan, but one that is shared amongst the majority of Black women in America.
Some Black men in America fail to recognize their privilege as a man, and because of that privilege they are inherently blind to their endorsement of patriarchy and misogynoir. When Black women speak on behalf of the entire race, we are seen as strong and courageous, but when we feel uncomfortable or challenge the misogyny within the Black community, suddenly the rug is pulled from under our feet and we are now seen as angry, bitter, rude, and aggressive. Why is it that we as Black women must put ourselves on the frontline to advocate for justice and respect for our race, when we only receive backhanded compliments and backlash from the men within our own community? Black women are seen like objects and disrespected when we attempt to speak our truth and exercise free will.
Tory Lanez not only shot Meg, but he also had the audacity to gaslight her and make money off of her trauma in his recent album. Seeing the many twitter arguments over whether or not she damaged his career or lied on his name for the sake of clout is disturbing and shifting the blame from the perpetrator to the victim. Shifting the blame, victim shaming, and gaslighting a victim are the worst possible things that anyone could do in a potentially life-and-death situation like this. Regardless of who she is or what she does, she is still human, she is still a Black woman, and deserves every bit of respect that men give to her body on Instagram.
REPORTERS: Mia Porter
THE VOICE, Gravity Magazine, 2020