Dating, Relationships, & Sex, Pop Culture, Race & Politics

From EBONY: Black Boys Need Lupita Nyong’o Too

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***Damon’s latest at EBONY on how Lupita’s popularity can have an effect on who young Black boys consider to be beautiful and “crush-worthy”***

From the time I first realized I liked girls (approximately age 8) to the time I entered high school, I had six “serious” crushes. None of these girls were girlfriends–I was far too timid then to make that happen–but each occupied that fantasy space in my heart and on my mind. One was a really good basketball player. Another was a classmate. Two lived in my neighborhood. I met the other two at summer camp.

And all shared the same phenotype: Light skinned, long hair, light eyes, biracial.

I’m not pointing this out to suggest a Black person’s complexion determines how authentically Black they are. Those girls were just as Black as the women I dated as an adult. And, to be clear, there’s nothing wrong with having a crush on a lightskinned woman. Lightskinned Black girls are Magic too. But there’s no doubt in my mind this crush pattern was a direct result of believing only lightskinned girls were crush-worthy.

I’m bringing this all up because, while much of the conversation about the very public praise Lupita receives for her looks focuses on its impact on Black women and girls, there’s another group who stands to gain just as much: Black boys.

As much as we tout how important it is for a young Black person’s parents to instill an appropriate sense of self-worth, self-love, and racial consciousness, family units don’t exist in vacuums. A kid’s peer groups matter. The images they’re exposed to matter. The media they consume matters. And, I don’t think it was a coincidence my young tastes skewed lighter at a time when the vast majority of the young female entertainers considered crush-worthy (Halle Berry, Aaliyah, Lark Voorhies, Mya, Karyn Parsons, Tisha Campbell, etc) were also light. Even the ones who were browner (Tatyana Ali, Ananda Lewis, Chilli, etc) were lauded for their long, wavy hair–a trait usually associated with lighter-skinned women and not one most Black women posses, not by far.

Also, young people are terribly obsessed with social proof. Nothing is cool until there’s a caucus and consensus on what and who is allowed to be cool. As an adolescent in the early 90s, even if you liked the 4th grader who favorite the first Aunt Viv, it was more socially acceptable to crush on the 10-year-old Rachel Stuart doppelganger.

This is where the endless laud and favor given to the beauty of a dark-skinned Black woman with short, kinky hair can make a difference. Just the act of seeing or reading about this universal praise can light a bulb in the head of a young kid already convinced light girls are the only girls worthy of his extra Nowalaters and Valentine’s Day cards.

Read more at EBONY

Damon Young

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VSB. He is also a contributing editor for EBONY.com. He resides in Pittsburgh, and he really likes pancakes.

  • Dabigpodina

    My crushes were the Jet Beauty of the weeks and my real life crushes were pretty diverse. I was more into Pam than Gina. And pepa than salt, spinderella over both though. Rachel though..All day. I did like Cyndi crawford, cindy in Envogue and Lark Vorhees. Looking at your list, I see how right you are. Who was famous that coulda been considered dark or even brown that was portrayed as beautiful? This is historic.

    • Jay

      Being color struck is more common among younger boys. I watch Martin reruns and I can’t keep my eyes off of Pam and find Gina barely cute even. When I was in middle school it was the opposite though.

    • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

      Truth…I was feeling lark voorhees, rosie perez, denise on the cosby show…

  • 321mena123

    Lark Voorhies has never been light a day in her life. She was/is brown. Same complexion as Ashley.

    • Val

      Maybe we need a color chart like they have at the paint store. Lol People have so many ideas of who is light/ brown/ dark.

      • 321mena123

        Right?!? But how could you even think that Lark is light? She is obviously brown. Champ messed up on that one.

      • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

        Agreed…cuz ive had people call me light, caramel, brown, peanut butter…I dont even know anymore

        • 321mena123

          You have a peanut butter complexion so i would assume you get lighter in the winter and a beautiful tan in the summer? Your complexion is my second favorite of all the black hues.

          • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

            Yes I do….and thank u….u just made my day

            • 321mena123

              Sure!

    • The Champ

      Yeah, I missed that one. She might have been light as a baby, though. I was.

  • http://batman-news.com cushiticmaid

    The Champ once again obliterates the nail on the head. It’s sad that a lot of the internet vitriol directed at Lupita comes from Black men. Putting her down just shows how much their idea of what’s attractive has been moulded by external factors. I really hope more women like Lupita are lauded and its publicly broadcasted from the rooftops that beauty has no color or race.

    • Obsidian Files

      @Ms. Cush:
      Yea, but what if that’s what those Black Men truly desire, regardless of “external factors’ – then what?

      Also: it would be interesting if, say, Kevin Hart were feted as “The Hottest Man of the Year” – how would Black Women respond to that? Would they too, cop to being “manipulated” into liking certain “handsomeness” standards, for Men? Or is this just a one-way street we’re talking about here?

      O.

      • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

        I may be wrong but my mom once joked that there are no ugly guys in Porsches…kevin hart working at u.p.s. is not the same as kevin hart the world famous comedian….whereas if halle berry (Just the first name that popped in my head) worked at walgreens I feel that mens variations of opinion on her attractiveness wouldn’t change much

        • Obsidian Files

          @Chris:
          Correct – and which goes to a POWERFUL truth that simply cannot be avoided:

          That Men and Women are FUNDAMENTALLY different, when it comes to attraction triggers. This is hugely important, because it threatens to undermine EVERYTHING about the very argument Champ here is proferring – that “media”, i.e., “culture” *matters* – to the extent that it is the sole shaper of Human Desire, in this case, Black Male Desire. The “culture” argument presumes that human beings are Blank Slates, that can be scribbled on and then “wiped clean” to start anew – but there is an emerging body of scientific evidence that this is not so – or at the very least, nowhere near as “total” as we would like to believe.

          Moreover, as my quesetion illustrates above, for the “Culture/Social Constructs” argument to work, it would also, by definition, HAVE to “work” on the very Black Women who champion Lupita right now – they too would have to admit that their desire for male height and status/resources possession in males, is also “socially constructed” – and if they are serious about tossing such things aside, they would have to also begin to find short, poor Men s*xually desirable.

          Any takers?

          I know this is a deeply sensitive, and sore, point for many Black Women; believe it or not, I do get it.

          But it will not change the admittedly harsh Truth – that when Black Men are able to achieve their desires, it is rare for them to select a Woman who resembles Lupita. It is, what it is, and we all know it, and if the empirical evidence that has been consistently growing for well over a decade by now is anything to go by, it is not likely to change anytiime soon.

          Even Champ himself speaks to this fact, in the very article he writes for Ebony, and a recent post he wrote about Ms. S*xy Cl*max. That, was an autonmous s*xual response on his part, to the late Ms. Cl*max. Brothas who are in a position to pick and choose, well, we know how that game ends.

          O.

          • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

            Youve very eloquently explained what I have tried to explain to people for the longest…thank u

            • Obsidian Files

              @Chris:
              The pleasure, is all mine.

              Of course, many will cite our current Prersident of the United States, Barack Obama, as Man who appreciates the “natural beauty” (heh) of Black Women; after all, he not only married First Lady Michelle Obama, but he courted her pretty hard, if the official accounts are to be believed. I have long suspected, that one of the reasons as to why he was elected to the Office, was due to the fact that he married a Black looking Black Woman. And Black Women vote. Consistently. More than Black Men do in total numbers.

              However, those who hold up Pres. Obama as their standard bearer either conveniently leave out, or are not aware of, the fact that, by his own hand, Obama does NOT have a verfiable track record of dating ANY Black Women regardless of skintone and hair length – he seems to have dated ONLY White Women prior to Michelle coming along. This raises some very interesting – and admittedly, uncomfortable questions – about just how much he is “into” Michelle – after all, the best indcator of future performance, is past performance – and political marriages are not at all unsual to witness.

              Plus, putting Obama alongside other very prominent and highly successful Black Men – including those who lack vertical cred, like Mr. Hart – makes the case even more crystal clear. Even if Obama truly gets his crank turned by Michelle, the FACT remains that just about every Top Shelf Brotha worth the name, has a Sista on his arm who nine times out of ten, does NOT resemble Michelle…or Lupita.

              I’m just sayin’.

              O.

              • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

                Now…just to play devil’s advocate here….what do you feel influences what we are attracted to?

                • Obsidian Files

                  @Chris:
                  Good question! As an Evolutionist, my answer is as follows:

                  Men in particular are attuned to attraction cues in Women that signal fertility: (relative) youth, (relative) beauty: clear skin, wide eyes, fine(er) features, small(er) feet, WHR (waist to hip ratio), “bubbleheadedness” (read: approachable and won’t be too difficult to deal with), long(er) hair and yes, light(er) skin. For biological reasons, Women tend to have more lustrous skin than do Men, and this is reflected throughout all the famed literature and dramas and the like down through the ages and in just about every clime known to humankind: to be “fair”, is to be feminine. “Dark(er)”, by definition, implies or infers “masculine” – this is why a Black man being dark(er) skinned, is NOT a bar on his s*xual success, and indeed is more often than not an enhancement; while for a Black Woman, being dark(er) skinned is often an impediment to overcome. As the current Make Lupita Beautiful Campaign(TM) currently shows.

                  At any rate, going back to your question: what has shaped these attraction triggers for Men, Black or otherwise, is Evolution, of course; over many Millennia, Men evolved to be attuned to those fefatures and traits that would alert them to the likelihood that a particular female in question was fertile, and the primary way needed to do that was based on phyical cues of youth and beauty.

                  Now – YES, culture CAN and often does play a role here – but not quite in the way many who proffer the “culture” argument might like to think. For example, “culture” cannot explain how orwhy, throughout the world’s cultures, Men are NOT s*xually attracted to say, post-menopausal Women; or Women who are their sisters (think about that for a minute; grosses you out, right? Now think about WHY that would be), or Women who have excessively big feet (read: really, really tall), etc. Sure, we all can think up notable exceptions to any of this, but their very existence, as I have noted with citing Pres. Obama, are the xceptions to the rule itself.

                  Let’s take Africa, for example. As many will kow here, it is a very diverse place; Easter Africans will look drastically different, from West Africans. Still, the fact remains that Black Men from both ends of the continent do not find post-menopausal Women s*xually attractive; both find Women with an WHR of .07 s*xually attractive; and both Black Men from differing ends of the contintent will find Women who are their sisters, unattractive s*xually.

                  How can the “culture” argument accoount for this? Moreover, does the “culture/media” arguement, have predictive power?

                  O.

                  • Melee

                    I would agree men and women are attracted on a primal level to traits that signal fertility, however I believe you have put too many things on your list of fertility indicators, so to speak. Facial symmetry, youth, waist to hip ratio, general appearance of health signal fertility and are desirable traits across cultures. Preference for light skin, which also exists in more phenotypically homogeneous cultures than our own (I assume you’re also American), tends to be more of a socio-economic impulse…light skin meant you don’t work outside the home (more specifically in the field back when society was predominantly agrarian): pallor indicated you lived a life of relative leisure. In modern times, lighter skin signals a closer affiliation to the dominant culture and and perhaps, greater access to goods, services, wealth, prosperity, etc. Long hair,small feet, and bad attitudes have no scientific correlation to physical health or gender. Of course people will like what they like but I think its important to examine our preferences and prejudices and if were not going to work against the ones informed by white supremacy, eurocentrism, sexism, and patriarchy, then at least we should acknowledge them for what they are as the author has by discussing his adolescent preference for light skin which I believe many of us can relate to… I thank him for his candor.

                    • Melee

                      Also, I would argue that some men who are not interested in childbearing do consider peri/post menopausal women attractive companions/mates…

                    • Obsidian Files

                      @Ms. Melee:
                      Without a doubt, any one of us can always point to notable exceptions to any Rule of Nature. That does not however, make the rule invalid; indeed if anything, it only strengthens it.

                      Please list out for me Black America’s most accomplished and successful Men, who selected as mates post-menopoausal Women? This, I’d very much like to see.

                      O.

                    • Melee

                      So being chosen as “mate” by “Black America’s most accomplished and successful Men” is the ruler by which were measuring what now??? Nevermind…bye.

                    • Obsidian Files

                      @Ms. Melee:
                      First, thanks for taking the time out to write a thoughtful reposte to my commentary above.
                      Second, while I certainly get where you’re coming from with regard to Champ’s ostensible candor, it is something that needs no such “bravery”; it is something that even children know and understand.

                      Third, since you seem to be in the “Culture/Racism/Media” camp, I would be very interested in seeing your response to the following:

                      For that argument to work, one would have to accoount for how and why Black Women themselves are attracted to what it is THEY are attracted to – is it “Culture/Racism/The Media”, too? And if not, why not? Particularly given the fact that Black Men are the most economically and status-deprived, in aggregate, of all Men in American life (and elsewhere throughout the world), it would be fascinating – shocking even – for the “Culture/Racism/Media” argument to “work” ONLY with regard to feminine beauty standards, while at the same time not informing, at all, on what makes a Man attractive to Women. It defies basic logic.

                      But, perhaps you can explain this?

                      Let’s take male height and the universal female preference for it – in fact, let’s bring it right to the Sistahood’s doorstep. Throughout Africa, and down through the centuries, “Big Man culture” is something that is widely recognized; that the biggest/tallest of Men always tended to have their choice (or should I say they were chosen?) of the most desirable females. Black Women in this very forum have, time and again, over several years running that I can distinctlyrecall, indicated a fierce preference for height in (Black) Men – to the extent of adamantly defending it, without any hint of irony or apology. Indeed, the very Women who bemoan the “culture” for foisting onto them unrealistic beauty standards, have zero problem in the least turning right around and foisting the very same unrealistic physical/status/resource stands onto (Black) Men(!!).

                      Are they immune to Cognitive Dissonance, or something?

                      Here, the Sistahood has worked themselves into quite a trick bag – if they buy into the Culture/Racism/Media argument, they would have to admit that they too have been “brainwashed” in terms of what they find desirable in Men, and that they have just as much a duty to combat that, as Black Men like Champ have with regard to Ms. Lupita – OR – they have to acknowledge that their preferences, and ours (read: Black Men), just may be informed a bit more by forces that run deeper than a TV screen and a few centuries of a certain philosophy can account for.

                      Well…which is it gonna be, Ms. Melee?

                      Ladies?

                      O.

                    • Melee

                      In my first sentence I apply all comments to men and women. No need for a separate explanation of women’s behavior. We’re all influenced by culture/media/racism/biology/etc. For me,it was all about El Debarge until Big Daddy Kane came around. Let Lupita be your Big Daddy Kane;-)
                      The article is about the (in your opinion arguably) positive effect Lupita Nyongo’s recent popularity has had on our culture. The author reminds us the positive effect of inclusiveness is gender neutral. Hypothetically speaking, even if you wont date a Lupita-type for whatever reason, perhaps you will accept her as the leading lady in the next movie>more black actors work>your hypothetical (I assume) black daughter/son/cousin/mother/father decides they want to be an actor, or a writer-producer in Hollywood greenlighting projects featuring actors of all persuasions in non traditional roles>she or he has greater opportunity…what could be wrong with that?
                      We’re all influenced by culture/media/racism/biology/etc.Preference for tall men falls under several of these categories…I’m not sure why you think this preference for “alpha male” traits is more prevalent in the continent of Africa or in sisters of the diaspora, but there continues to be short men born in this world so I think they’re doing alright for themselves. If People mag decides to name Kevin Hart America’s sexiest man next year I will not be penning any diatribes about it flying in the face of all I hold dear.
                      I’ve read a few of your past comments so I realize my wit and wisdom is lost on you so I’m going to leave you alone to fight your straw (wo)men.

                    • http://justfourguys.com Obsidian

                      @Ms. Melee:

                      Thanks again for taking the time out. My replies are as follows:

                      “In my first sentence I apply all comments to men and women.”

                      O: Yes, you do.

                      “No need for a separate explanation of women’s behavior.”

                      O: I beg to differ, and for precisely for the reasons that you have attempted to dodge (see my comments about short(er) Men); interesting response, on your part that…

                      “We’re all influenced by culture/media/racism/biology/etc. For me,it was all about El Debarge until Big Daddy Kane came around. Let Lupita be your Big Daddy Kane;-)”

                      O: I have offered no personal opinion one way or another regarding Ms. Lupita – and I won’t…

                      “The article is about the (in your opinion arguably) positive effect Lupita Nyongo’s recent popularity has had on our culture.”

                      O: No, the article is about how and why Black boys would supposedly benefit from being inculcated with images of Ms. Lupita-type Black Women. Whether that is good/positive or bad/negative, is something that remains to be seen on the one hand, and of no practical use to me personally on the other. As you well know, I am not particularly moved by sentiment or appeals to morality – only phenomena that can be documented, and plausible explanations for how and why said phenomena comea about in the first place.

                      “The author reminds us the positive effect of inclusiveness is gender neutral.”

                      O: My points about Black Men along certain metrics, suggest otherwise…

                      “Hypothetically speaking, even if you wont date a Lupita-type for whatever reason, perhaps you will accept her as the leading lady in the next movie>more black actors work>your hypothetical (I assume) black daughter/son/cousin/mother/father decides they want to be an actor, or a writer-producer in Hollywood greenlighting projects featuring actors of all persuasions in non traditional roles>she or he has greater opportunity…what could be wrong with that?”

                      O: Nothing, especially since Ms. Lupita is hardly the first dark(er) Black Woman who has won an Oscar…Hattie McDaniel easily comes to mind, and Cicely Tyson, though I don’t think she won an Oscar (I stand to be corrected on that if I’m wrong), has certainly made her mark in the very same ways you are proffering with respect to Ms. Lupita. There are other notable examples.

                      “We’re all influenced by culture/media/racism/biology/etc.Preference for tall men falls under several of these categories…”

                      O: Yes, but now you’re making the very point I was upthread and throughout my tenure here at VSB, of which you are aware (your parting shot below); so, if we both agree that this is the case, and it seems that we do, WHY AREN’T BLACK WOMEN VIGOROUSLY EXAMINING THEMSELVES ALONG THESE LINES?

                      Please explain?

                      “I’m not sure why you think this preference for “alpha male” traits is more prevalent in the continent of Africa or in sisters of the diaspora,”

                      O: I don’t recall ever making any such argument; moreover, I never used the term “alpha male” – you did…

                      “but there continues to be short men born in this world so I think they’re doing alright for themselves.”

                      O: Actually, NO, they don’t – and there are all manner of empirical evidence that bears this out.

                      More here: http://supportfortheshort.org/

                      If the same remarks were directed to “Dark Girls” like Lupita, or “Fat Girls” like fill in the blank, or Gay or Lesbian folk, it would rightly be determined to be hate speech at worst and just very poor taste at the least.

                      In any event, if your argument is that “short men continue to be born in this world”, couldn’t we say the same for Black Women like Lupita – and if so, why all the hub bub to begin with?

                      Your response?

                      “If People mag decides to name Kevin Hart America’s sexiest man next year I will not be penning any diatribes about it flying in the face of all I hold dear.”

                      O: Well, that’s a comfort. However, we’re not talking about you, I’m, afraid; my question was aimed at the bulk and mass of Black Women in the main, and I think you know this. We both know that the majority of Black Women would NOT agree with such an “imprimatur” given by GQ or People, etc. Which again goes back to the point I made in response to the “Culture/Racism/Media” argument – so, why aren’t Sistas just as focused in vigorous examination/investigation of their own attraction triggers and norms that they cling to, as they demand others do with regard to Black Women like Lupita?

                      Hmm?

                      “I’ve read a few of your past comments so I realize my wit and wisdom is lost on you so I’m going to leave you alone to fight your straw (wo)men.

                      O: Oh? And what, precisely, are the comments you read by my hand in the past, that so convinces you that your “wit and wisdom” is tantamount to throwing pearls before my porcine snout? Do tell!

                      “So being chosen as “mate” by “Black America’s most accomplished and successful Men” is the ruler by which were measuring what now??? Nevermind…bye.”

                      O: LOL. It’s OK to admit that I am making legitimate points, you know…

                      O.

              • 321mena123

                Black people made up a small percentage of the vote in both elections. By far, white people (women and the young) voted for Barack. And being dark skin has rarely won anyone points seeing as how dark skin blacks have been treated and still are treated in this country.

                Would you raise these same questions if Michelle was light? I highly doubt it. But since she is brown, there must have been an ulterior motive to him marrying her.

                • Obsidian Files

                  @Ms. Mena:
                  First, it is a matter of commonly accepted fact that political marriages have and continue to occur (Chelsea Clinton and Mark Mevzensky comes to mind, for example); that isn’t a matter of debate.

                  Second, one would have to explain how and why this could NOT be the case for Obama – especially given the facts as I have laid them out above; again, by his own hand (have you read his autobiography?), he had no track record of dating Black Women, prior to Michelle coming on the scene. Only White Women. Isn’t that just a weebit odd, to you?

                  Third, as Prof. Ralph Richard Banks points out in his book, “Is Marriage For White People?”, Black Women – who no doubt, make up the bulk of Black American voters (read: they are registered and vote in larger numbers than do Black Men, in aggregate) – look upon Barack Obama with extra favor and approval, BECAUSE of who chose to be his First Lady. Indeed, I would argue that if Obama had married one of the many White girlfriends he had in many years gone by, Black Women as a bloc would NOT have turned out to vote for him in the way they have. Twice.

                  That ostensibly smart, highly educated Black Women have, to date, NOT raised these questions, says something very profound about their psychology, which is currently playing itself out with regard to Ms. Lupita…and itself raises even more questions…

                  Finally, you are correct to say that more Whites (which includes White Women, of course) voted for Obama in absolute numbers, than Blacks. But that was never my point, and I think you know it.

                  Looking forward to your response.

                  O.

                  • 321mena123

                    People use political marriage only after the person has become successful. Most tend to marry people who are at their level. There should be nothing shocking about Clinton marrying Hilary when they were both intelligent and doing their own thing before they met each other. No one can see into the future and say “i’m going to be president one day. I’ll marry him/her.” What people usually say is “we can build and be a powerhouse together. Let’s see where this takes us.” That isn’t a “political marriage” that’s being responsible and wanting to marry someone on your same wavelength.

                    When you make statements like these “I have long suspected, that one of the reasons as to why he was elected to the Office, was due to the fact that he married a Black looking Black Woman. And Black Women vote. Consistently. More than Black Men do in total numbers.” you are implying that not only did Obama marry Michelle to get black women votes but due to those black women votes, he won the election. Both assumptions on your part goes against any type of political analysis.

                    I would say that black women favor Obama b/c he has a black family. Not because he married a woman with a browner hue. I favor Obama because he married a woman that is not only as successful as him, but because she is his intellectual equal. Sorry but Obama didn’t marry a dingbat who just sits there silently. He married a woman with poise and intellect. This is why people love Michelle (mostly the whites that voted for him).

                    Again, if Obama would have married a lighter skin black woman, i doubt blacks would have questioned his motives but because he didn’t, we now have to analyze his every action and reaction.

                    • http://justfourguys.com Obsidian

                      @Ms. Meena:

                      My apologies for my tardiness in response; been a bit tied up of late. You should also be advised that my upcoming Wed, May 7 column at J4G will be taking up this topic; you and everyone else here is more than welcome to participate!

                      Here we go:

                      “People use political marriage only after the person has become successful.”

                      O: Bzzzzzzz! False. Political marriages have been arranged when the prospective bride and groom were still kids(!). For more on this, please see Stephanie Coontz’s “Marriage” A History”:

                      http://www.amazon.com/Marriage-History-How-Love-Conquered/dp/014303667X

                      “Most tend to marry people who are at their level.”

                      O: This was never in dispute…

                      “There should be nothing shocking about Clinton marrying Hilary when they were both intelligent and doing their own thing before they met each other.”

                      O: What was “shocking” was how Hillary has “stood by her Man” in a time and age where she should have left him, per Feminist Dogmas. Then again, she has stood to benefit greatly from the association (US Senator, Sec’y of State, and…POTUS?) – right?

                      Hmm…

                      “No one can see into the future and say “i’m going to be president one day. I’ll marry him/her.”

                      O: Then clearly, you have not read the formidable evidence about Pres. Obama; as a youngster he had designs on the White House – and clearly, he knew he had to develop a measure of “street cred” upon landing in Chitown – this was made even more brutally clear when he was taken out to the electoral woodshed in the US Congressional election against former Black Panther Bobby Rush.

                      “What people usually say is “we can build and be a powerhouse together. Let’s see where this takes us.” That isn’t a “political marriage” that’s being responsible and wanting to marry someone on your same wavelength.”

                      O: No, that’s very much a “political marriage”, just saying it in a way that won’t make people, most notably Women, upset about it…

                      “When you make statements like these “I have long suspected, that one of the reasons as to why he was elected to the Office, was due to the fact that he married a Black looking Black Woman. And Black Women vote. Consistently. More than Black Men do in total numbers.” you are implying that not only did Obama marry Michelle to get black women votes but due to those black women votes, he won the election. Both assumptions on your part goes against any type of political analysis.”

                      O: Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence – links, please? Nothing I have said here is alien – it’s been said before, without answer by those on your side of the aisle in the way of countervailing evidence, I might add. For example, where is the track record of Obama having dated Black looking Black Women, PRIOR to Michelle Obama – perhaps you can point us all to this smoking gun evidence? I’ll wait…

                      “I would say that black women favor Obama b/c he has a black family. Not because he married a woman with a browner hue.”

                      O: http://www.amazon.com/Marriage-White-People-American-Everyone/dp/B007K4FRA2/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1398805270&sr=1-1&keywords=is+marriage+for+white+people

                      By all means, please respond?

                      “I favor Obama because he married a woman that is not only as successful as him, but because she is his intellectual equal. Sorry but Obama didn’t marry a dingbat who just sits there silently.”

                      O: Now you’re arguing a strawman; nice try though…

                      “He married a woman with poise and intellect. This is why people love Michelle (mostly the whites that voted for him).”

                      O: If that is the case, then he could have just as easily married a Black Women with MORE demonstrated poise and intellect in Cali’s current Attorney General, Ms. Kamala Harris – again, I openly question whether he would have gotten the kind of warm welcome from a significant and highly important voting bloc for the Democratic Party, if it was Ms. Harris on Obama’s arm rather than Michelle…?

                      “Again, if Obama would have married a lighter skin black woman, i doubt blacks would have questioned his motives but because he didn’t, we now have to analyze his every action and reaction.”

                      O: As is the case with EVERY POTUS, my dear; it is the nature of the beast.

                      See ya on May 7th!

                      :)

                      O.

  • griffdamagician

    She is beautiful on so many levels and i am glad that she is getting that recognition. Not since Grace Jones hit the scene in the late 80′s/early 90′s has a woman of this type been considered “popular” in terms of beauty. As a man with very varied views of beauty in women, i couldnt agree more with Champ on this. I hope this sky-rockets the confidence of every girl who has felt bad about herself for having more genetic expression of “African” features.

  • Jay

    My six year old is starting to watch less Spongebob and more live action shows… usually on Disney Channel. I watch with him and worry a little about what impressions he’s forming. I try to read his mind and gauge his reactions… like what he laughs at. I end up feeling like I’m being paranoid and worrying too much.

  • ?

    Im not on social media so can someone tell me who and where people are calling Lupita ugly? Makes me want to recite that speech in Malcolm X. “What makes you ashamed of being black.”

    • Obsidian Files

      @?:
      Interesting that you would cite Malcolm X; as we all know, he was very fairskinned, referred to as “Detroit Red” in his younger days of rippin’ and runnin’ the streets – and made it a point to marry a darkerskinned Woman, in the late Betty Shabazz. The sociopolitical implications of his mate choice simply cannot be overlooked here – and which raises again, all manner of admittedly very uncomfortable questions for the rest of us to grapple with.

      O.

  • Joel

    Maybe I don’t hang out on Twitter enough…..but I don’t know one Black man in real life that finds Lupita unattractive. Not a single one.

    • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

      She’s ok….I wouldnt say unattractive but then again my preference leans towards “thick” not slim

      • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

        Her complexion is flawless however

    • Obsidian Files

      @Joel:
      Thanks for bringing something up that I think really needs more thorough examination:

      The Role of Class, in all of this.

      I have found, that this #TeamLupita thing, is something that is being pushed HARD by the Bougie Crowd; you know, those Black folks who have college degrees, and are at least nominally middle class in their lifestyles and orientations to the world. Even more importantly, the Black males of this cohort, seem to go out of their way to register their vote of confidence to and for Lupita.

      It is admirable…but mistaken.

      In the ‘hood and among Blue Collar Brothas, there is no question as to what they find most s*xually desirable – none at all. Hip Hop was born of and continues to be driving by the lower and working classes of Black Men;even those who hail from more “whitebread” circumstances, pay fealty to this aesthetic and orientation. Brothas from the lower depths of the American social pecking order make no bones about the issue; on nearly every measure and chance they get, they make it crystal clear as to who they find attractive and are not at all bashful to tell you how and why – recall the blacklash rapper Slim Thug got when he did so, for example.

      He is by no means alone.

      As I’ve alluded to the other day, I think one of the definite upsides to being a Blue Collar Brotha, is that you are MORE free to BE; Bougie Brothas have many more social constraints on them, and I think they know it. And I thnk one of the ways those constraints manifest themselves, is along the lines we are discussing, right now.

      Thoughts?

      O.

      • Joel

        Blue collar or otherwise, maybe I as a forward-thinking Brother simply don’t have the time to be all on websites where folks are just slandering Lupita or any other attractive women all day long. Haters gonna hate, true…but who is sitting around ENTERTAINING this hate? That’s the more important question.
        On a minor side note, I wonder what kind of men Lupita finds attractive. Just out of curiousity, not for any other reason.

        • Obsidian Files

          @Joel:
          LOL, your response is quite interesting indeed.

          First, is it truly “forward thinking” that’s at issue here – or just revealed preferences? Is one good, or better, than another? I find it interesting that you would impute value judgments to the topic at hand. On the other, I am merely describing manifest phenomena, and, offering explanations for WHY said phenomena, has come about. For me, notions of “forward thinking” or otherwise – i.e., right and wrong, good and bad, et al – have no meaning.

          Therefore, the whole notion of “hate” is a non-sequitur.

          As for Lupita’s preferences in a Man, that’s a very good question; one wonders if she would find the “UPS version” of Kevin Hart to be the apple of her eye…

          O.

          • Joel

            I say “forward thinking” in the sense that I’m more mature and have way better things to do than hate on what an attractive, accomplished, educated, and successful Sista is doing in life. And judging is still judging….true, we all do it in some form or another, but there is still a value you can place upon said judgment, be it good or bad.

            • Obsidian Files

              @Joel:
              Again, I find your word choice fascinating; was Slim Thug being “immature” when he stated his preferences in a Black Woman? Was the backlash of reaction to same on the part of the Sistahood, just as “immature” – if not, why not?

              And, has anyone questioned Ms. Lupita’s thespian bona fides? Has anyone suggested that she was NOT deserving of an Oscar? From all the coverage I’ve been reading, I cannot recall much evidence along those lines. From the best evidence I can gather on the issue, the bone of contention on the part of a not insignificant number of Black Men, isn’t her acting chops, or the laurels she’s earned with them; but rather, the notion that she is attractive.

              By all accounts, a significant number of them (and from what I can tell on CNN, Men of other Races), would beg to differ.

              Does merely disagreeing with a public edict, tantamount to “immaturity”?

              O.

              • Joel

                I kind of sort of liked Slim Thug as a rapper….however, as a thespian of Black love? Not sure about that. The man calls himself “Slim Thug” after all. Is anyone taking what he says that seriously? I honestly don’t know or don’t remember what he said about women….again, he’s a rapper. When he drops a song or an album, maybe then I’ll pay attention. If I want good pizza, I’ll go to H Street (or U Street) Pizza….not the local Chinese food carryout spot.
                As far as Lupita goes, she won an Oscar, not Miss USA or Miss Universe. Everyone’s judging her beauty when that’s not even how we knew of her before this People magazine cover. The woman’s beautiful in my eyes. That’s as far as I can go with this. I’m pretty sure Lupita doesn’t give three airborne dambs about what Black Twitter or has-been rappers think of her. If foks were saying she’s a terrible actress, then maybe I could see the outcry.
                We have a Sista that made the front cover of a magazine NOT named Jet, Ebony, Essence, Source, Vibe, XXL, King, or Sista 2 Sista (do they still publish that last one?) and folks are hating. I don’t get it, and I don’t care to.

                • Obsidian Files

                  @Joel:
                  Well, as it turned out, quite a few Sistas cared about what Slim Thug had to say, and that wasn’t the first or only time something like that has happened – when a prominent (or I guess you could say in ST’s case, “semi-prominent”?) Brotha states his preferences in Black Women, there is certain to be pushback – much as we’re seeing pushback wrt Ms. Lupita right now.

                  Again, the issue isn’t with her accomplishments, it’s with the idea that she is “beautiful”; well, we seem to have quite a bit of evidence that a plurality of Black Men, beg to differ. Is that “immature” – and if so, how and why? And, could we apply that same metric of “immaturity” to others – say, Black Women, and their own preferences and standards of Male attractiveness? Why not?

                  O.

                  • Joel

                    There’s a quote floating around out there, and it goes something along the lines of, “You’re only as big as the things that you allow to make you upset.” Folks that care what Slim Thug or anyone has to say about Black women should find other things to worry about. Just like I myself am learning that I don’t need to be concerned about the opinions of Black women that might not find me attractive.
                    That’s where “maturity” comes into play. Everyone isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea. I get it.

                    • http://justfourguys.com Obsidian

                      @Joel:
                      I don’t disagree – which brings us round robin back to the very issue at hand – WHY is it such a big deal for a formidable amount of Black Men to simply say, “no, I don’t find Ms. Lupita attractive”, and others simply leave it at that? The very fact that this enormous groundswell of “conscious folks”, like Champ, to attempt to “combat” this, really suggests something that runs counter to what you’ve written above, Joel.
                      Hmm…
                      O.

  • Ms Butterfly

    I’ve found this to be true with white men as well; they only think the “Pamela Anderson” look is THE definition of hot until they become an adult and discover different types of beauty that aren’t just cookie cutter playboy types. Something about maturity makes chexual AND food preferences evolve.

  • Ms Butterfly

    So much beef between dark skin women and light skin women started in grade school with a dude and some Now and Laters. SO. MUCH. BEEF.

  • LupeThaKilla

    BLACK WOMEN DONT CARE ABOUT LUPITA, THEYRE TOO BUSY WORRYING ABOUT BEYONCE.. GIVE ME LUPITA OVER BEYONCE ANYDAY..

    • Chris Streetz Poet Bright

      Ive never understood why people like beyonce…she’s just ok looking to me

    • Lisa

      I like both Lupita (she is so fascinating and graceful), but have always preferred Solange looks over Beyonce. Just more interesting.