Our Roots


We have a problem with our roots. We have a problem with our cultural roots and the roots of our hair. I guess we have a problem with the roots of our hair because we have a problem with our cultural roots. Either way it go it’s a problem. A problem that no one wants to discuss or even acknowledge but we must do both for the sake of our babies. Still today in 2009 we as African-Americans, matter of fact America as a whole can’t discuss race without feeling uncomfortable.  Not only should we discuss race but we should discuss our definition of beauty. A great documentary called “A Girl Like Me” showed how still today our brown and black babies define their complexion as “ugly.” I’m not talking about years ago during the Brown v. Board of Education era, I mean a couple of years ago when we have more than enough examples of beautiful people of color. How is it that still today our babies feels inferior? Maybe because there are still parents who say poisonous words to their children like, “your too dark/light,” “your hair isn’t manageable a.k.a nappy.” Still today we speak this inferiority into our children and they act it out in their everyday lives. Dr. Carter G. Woodson taught us that if you control a man’s thinking you don’t have to worry about what he will do. If you have taught a group of people for centuries that they are inferior it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that they will not only embrace inferiority but they will spread it to their children. And so the process continues generation after generation. It must stop! Its bigger than the perm (though we are physically damaging ourselves everytime we use it), the real issue is our definition of beauty. Our definition of beauty is not what we see in the mirror and because of it we grow to hate everything about ourselves, our color, our features and the texture of our hair. We must embrace our roots! But we can’t embrace and appreciate one without loving and appreciating the other.

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