Can I be Petty LaBelle for a second? Cool? Ok.
So I’ve been blogging long enough that I’ve heard my share of silly comments regarding my hair, from people arguing about my hair texture to being confused how my hair grew so long when I got braids or a weave to saying my hair was ugly. Even in my personal life I’ve dealt with a healthy dosage of ignorance from all types of people. For example, my 5th grade classmates asked me, the first and only black girl in the middle school, if I knew how to Harlem Shake – I did, and proudly showed them too (this was before I knew the history of using black people for entertainment aka minstrel shows and such). I had a Nigerian guy at Shrine refuse to believe that I was really Nigerian because I looked and sounded American. Idk why he was so pressed because I wasn’t checking for him anyway.
But THIS my friends, this comment left on one of my YouTube videos, trumps all of those things. Why do you ask? You’ll just have to see for yourself:
May I ask, what is your ethnicity? I thought you were Nigerian, but your hair patterns seem more common with African Americans… I don’t mean to stereotype, just curious.
I don’t even know where to start. Perhaps a lesson on the fact that hair pattern has nothing to do with nationality/ethnicity, and there are Nigerians with looser, wavier hair (for example: Wunmi of WomanintheJungle), African-Americans with tighter, kinkier hair, and Latino women with afros.
Or I could begin debunking the myth that saying prejudicial, otherizing comments under the guise of curiosity is complete BS.
Or I could question the need – in 2015 – to create and emphasize differences between black people – whether born on the African continent or with ancestors dating back several centuries.
If I have any strength left, I might bring to attention the fact that my hair was blow dried and thus not indicative of my hair texture/pattern in the first place.
Girl if you’re reading this, it’s not too late. I am Nigerian, and my hair is kinky. My authentically African hair can be blow-dried, flat ironed, curled, and twisted to look however the heck I want it to look. As can anyone else’s hair. Heck, white women are now wearing afros so it REALLY doesn’t matter what your ethnicity is.
What’s the most ignorant or offensive thing someone has said about your hair?
*If you’re super petty and looking for this comment, you won’t find it! I’m not THAT petty ?