Celebrating Women’s History:

Black and Proud

Watching the #BlackPanther movie made me proud to be a woman of color! Just think, a woman that looks like me is the heroine — and is cast with a hero who is strong, smart, ethical, passionate, and a man of color. Wealth, resources, technology and war machinery is not the hallmark of power, success and heroism — character is the hallmark of superiority – doing good for humanity is the hallmark!  In Wakanda, an idealistic society, every human being can be superior!

The quiet strong way in which colorism is addressed counters what is typically portrayed by the USA, in Hollywood, and even sadly among some in the African American community.

The film is refreshing and inspiring to women of color in many ways! But one way in particular arrests my attention: The quiet strong way in which “colorism” is addressed counters what is typically portrayed by the USA, in Hollywood, and even sadly among some in the African American community.  Imbedded deeply in every aspect of life and culture within the USA, “white” and “light” in complexion is cast as better or the best.  #BlackPanther defies this portrayal, this imaging, and this thinking!

Every single, prominent female character in #BlackPanther is of darker hue and strong features, generally associated with women whose DNA/genetic makeup is rooted in Africa.  This decision to cast women who possess more melanin excited me.  Don’t get me wrong, nothing is wrong with women born with lighter complexions and with different anatomy – BUT — women with such looks carry a “societal” privilege that I never enjoyed. My skin is dark, my hair was very coarse, and my body was very thin from head to toe — no worries – God gifted me with brains and guts and personality and most of all, heart/love. My way was carved out with the spiritual aide of a strong black woman who worked as a maid and a strong black father who worked odd jobs to make ends meet for a family of 10 children.

We were not permitted to sit back and settle for less because of how we were created, like our ancestors before us — we had to excel in intellect and brute force and doing good deeds to reach our destiny. Our minds and hearts, not our bodies, would shape our future. The Wakanda civilization, though fictional, brings into full relief the message that regardless of gender, complexion or looks that one’s intellect, soul and mind can provide remarkable outcomes for community, society and country.

For every woman, of African descent, or Latino descent, or Indian/Asian descent, or European descent, or cisgender woman, or trans-woman, or poor woman, we morph into identity, then into our destiny, from caterpillar to butterfly, we own our God-given fingerprint, and we resurrect despite societal burials of racism, sexism, and classism. We rise up, as we must, to become phenomenal!

We were not born to fit in a mold; we were not born to fit in; we were born to be different, to be authentic, to be free, to fly, and soar!

#blackandproud #liveyourlife #blackpanthermovie #womensupportingwomen #womenshistorymonth #womenempowerment #internationalwomensmonth #angelinajolie #womenauthors #thegaypreacherswife #cnn

By Lydia Meredith; Edited by Oth(Niel) B. Harris

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