Black Women Privilege…Does this exist???
Listen, it’s hard being a woman in this twisted patriarchal misogynist world, but it’s even harder being a Black Women! It’s hard! Black Women get double the stereotypes, double the discrimination, double the sexism and double any other ‘ism’ that is oppressive towards people.
When a situation occurs that oppresses women, the impact affects black women twice as hard For example, in the nine states that have new abortion laws written by cis white men and women statistics show black women face significantly higher problems when it comes to access and utilization of care in the U.S. Here’s what this means: we receive an inefficient quality of care compared to other races. Especially care related to our reproductive rights. In America, black women have higher infant and maternal mortality rates.
According to a study done by the National Partnership Organization:
“ Black women are three to four times more likely to experience a pregnancy-related death than white women.”
“ Black women’s access to abortion is limited, and they may be more likely to experience the ill effects of abortion restrictions — such as delayed care, increased costs or lack of access to care.”
“Black women experience higher rates of unintended pregnancies than all other racial groups, in part because of disparities in access to quality contraceptive care and counseling”
This is due to systemic racism and sexism in our American society, heavily manifested in our healthcare system. Black women die every day around the world simply because of the fact that we are black…...and women. The two most oppressed identities in our world. Everyone in the world has been taught to survive but there are special skills that as black women, we’re taught that allow us to simply live. We’ve learned to survive in a world that does not value us and views us as less than.
We’ve learned to survive in a world that views us as inferior.
With time, our generation of black women and those that came before us have evolved to be outspoken. Black phenomenal women such as Winnie Byanymi, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Angela Rye, Luvvie Ajayi, Tarana Burke and so much more have given us tools for survival. We have learned to speak with confidence, unafraid of the consequences. We have learned to find our voices in a society that wants us to remain silent.
As Black Women, we’ve learned we can’t fix ourselves into systems that were created and designed by men. We’ve created our own systems, despite the multitude of barriers we faced. We have witnessed great resistance from the patriarchal societal systems, and globally there has developed a HUGE revolution and push towards black women re-defining the norms.
I got into a debate recently with a friend about “Black Women privileges”.
One of his examples of “Black
Women Privilege” is that we have the privilege of
“Speaking out against
what we deem wrong, and everyone else opinion is
secondary” and, according to him, people actually listen to what we say.
Now, he comes from a different intersectional personality and culture, the“
British-African” one, where black women seem
to thrive in his society compared to black
Men. I wish that were the
case in America.
But listen, my melanin-rich queens, have you ever encountered a situation where a white person would acknowledge the black men in the room
Please, gather around for a selfie because I have!
In OUR America, where Black women are seen as the epitome of the bottom,
I couldn’t relate with my friend in that debate because I did not understand the society in which he was raised.
His argument was that there is such a thing as Black Women Privileges.
I had to think to myself. Like...huh? Me? A black woman? I have privileges?!
Now as a black woman living in America, the only privileges that I have as a reflection of my intersecting personalities are: I am educated, middle-class, , heterosexual and Christian.
Putting these privileges aside and just being a plain “Black Women” I have..... ZERO privileges.
Now, we all know that we are NOT inferior: we are valuable assets of this society, and without us, the world will NOT rotate. It will be frozen dead on its axis.
So, I wonder, what is “Black Women Privilege”? Do I have access to that?!
Is it because people listen to me when we speak?
Do they listen to me when we speak??
I certainly don’t feel heard as a Black
Women. That’s why I feel the need to always speak out! I feel the need to always prove, and defend myself. Me gaining the ability and confidence to speak out has been an ongoing journey; this has been an ongoing journey for MANY Black women including those listed above who have had to break the glass ceiling to give my generation a voice.
So I am genuinely curious, not to throw my friend under the bus, because his opinion is valid and his experience of being a black man is valid as well. But, as black women do we have black woman privilege? Does it exist? How does it assist us in our blackness? How does it harm us in our Blackness? How can we thrive from it?
I would like to hear some different opinions on this, because I am genuinely curious.