Lists, Race & Politics, Theory & Essay

The Wackness Of The “Acting White” Myth

***This was originally published a few years ago, but a recent conversation with a very “convinced” Black conservative urged me to refresh and repost***

We’ve all heard the story before:

Black boy meets and falls in love with books, but anti-book Black classmates beat, berate, and ban him from all future block bbq’s for properly conjugating verbs, eating fat-free mayonnaise, and generally acting “White”.

Author Stuart Buck examined this phenomenon in Acting White: The Ironic Legacy of Desegragration, an earnest attempt to understand the (worsening) academic progress of African-Americans in the years after schools were integrated. While I agree with many of the points made—especially the reference to the “soft prejudice of low expectations from racist teachers who assumed blacks weren’t capable and from liberals who coddled them“—this book ultimately disappoints for one simple reason: The title.

Let me explain.

Whether we’re accepting the “truth” that Black men marry out almost three times as much as Black women (despite the fact that the actual numbers—according to census stats, 3.7% of married Black American women and 8.4% of married Black American men had a non-Black spouse—show that there’s really not much of a discrepancy), or passing the news that 50 percent of all black women in Washington, D.C. have active herpes (even though the oft-cited study actually claimed that 48 percent of the Black women tested had just been exposed to the herpes virus—big, big difference), we have an annoying tendency to believe, recite, repeat, and spread chicken little statistical half-truths and scary campfire stories about ourselves regardless of how half-assed the “facts” happen to be, so, it doesn’t surprise me when others start to believe, recite, repeat, and spread these facts as well.

Perhaps the most dangerous of these bullshit memes is “The Danger of Acting White” idea, which basically states that high achieving Black children are routinely picked on by other Black children just because they’re high achievers…something that just doesn’t f*cking happen.

Yup, you read that correctly. It (high achieving Black children getting routinely picked on by other Black children just because they’re high achievers) doesn’t f*cking happen…at least not in the way it’s usually thought to, and here’s three reasons why.

***Before I continue, I just want to say that I do realize that there have been Black kids picked on and beat up (and worse) by other Black kids just because they happened to be good students. I’m also not attempting to minimize the very real fact that a disturbing sense of intellectual and academic apathy exists among far too many of us. All I’m saying is that this (Black kids getting picked on by other Blacks just because they’re smart) doesn’t happen as often as we’re lead to believe***

1. “Akeelah and the Bee”

One of the most ridiculously realistic movie scenes I’ve ever seen happens an hour or so into this movie. Burgeoning spelling bee champ Akeelah gets clowned and dismissed by her brother, Namond Brice, who also assumes that the neighborhood dopeboy he hopes to work for would find Akeelah’s spelling bee competition as simple and stupid as he does. Instead, the dopeboy gives Akeelah encouragement, tells Akeelah about the poems he used to write, and even orders Namond to help his little sister study.

This scene is ridiculous because the neighborhood dopeboy is played by The Rubberband Man, a guy who screams “thug” about as loudly as Donnie McClurkin screams “straight.” But, it’s realistic because this actually does happen. As anyone who’s actually lived in or taught at an inner-city school district will tell you, the school and neighborhood thugs are usually either indifferent towards or encouraging of kids that seem to have a bit of “talent,” whether it’s academic or athletic (as long as they don’t snitch, of course).

2. Smart kids don’t get picked on just because they’re smart, but…

…nerdy kids do, and, this happens everywhere, not just in the inner-city. Regardless of their socioeconomic or racial background, nerds get teased because, well, they’re nerds, and socially awkward kids are easy targets.

I know this seems obvious, but it just annoys me when people act as if nerdy kids are “allowed” to be nerds everywhere else except the hood. I’m amazed at how easily we’ve allowed this context-less meme to spread, especially since it basically calls us a nation full of crabs. Shit, there’s a reason “Revenge of the Nerdsis such a cult-classic. It’s a vicarious revenge fantasy for nerds, their opportunity to reverse the sh*t that happens to nerds everywhere, and it’s filled with gratuitous boob shots.

That’s actually two reasons, but you get my point.

3. Some Black people actually do act “White”…and they do deserve to be picked on

By acting “White” I’m not referring to using proper English, listening to Weezer instead of Weezy, or even dating outside of your race. But, there are people who do their absolute best to rid themselves of any apparent trace of Black culture, and those people deserve to be admonished.

I won’t go into too much detail about how exactly “doing your absolute best to rid yourself of any trace of black culture” is defined, but I will say that its definition is somewhat similar to porn’s: You know it when you see it.

Basically, just think of any character Rashida Jones has ever played in any movie.

—Damon Young (aka “The Champ”)

Filed Under: ,
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.

  • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

    “Rubberband Man”??? Is that the f*cking “crab man” from “My Name Is Earl”?? lol

  • Vesalius

    First. I have nothing else to add.

    • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

      How you doin…

      • Iceprincess2

        Ctfu!

        • Juiciest Mango

          you ain’t acting white right about now.

      • Vesalius

        I see you. Had I commented first and read second, I would have been first. I now have a plan and imma work that plan. LOL.

        • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

          Um… you’re new around here huh?

          • Vesalius

            Yes and no. I’ve been a reader for years now but only commented once before.

            • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

              The one called Liz is watching… she’s always watching… And she don’t play that FIRST sh*t.

              • Sweet GA Brown

                “The one called Liz is watching”

                I feel like we should beware of those of which we do not speak of. Lol.

  • Vesalius

    Damn it. Second. Next time.

  • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

    OK, I know I haven’t been around here lately but one thing you’re NOT gonna do is fire shots at Rashida Jones aka my dream girl. I’ve only seen her in Parks and Rec and maybe one movie and yes… I will admit that she seems to be “passing”. But she’s mixed. Plus she dated Pac back in the day… she gets points for that right??

    • http://yourchildsmother.blogspot.com/ KMN

      “Plus she dated Pac back in the day… she gets points for that right??”

      LMAO Not acting white but acting black by association?

      KMN

    • hehe

      “Plus she dated Pac back in the day… she gets points for that right??”

      Nope her sister dated and was engaged to Pac.

      • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

        Yeah, everyone thinks it was Rashida who dated 2Pac. I think she gets a lot of cool points, that she hasn’t earned, because of that.

        • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

          Either that or her “appearance” on Chappelle’s show.

      • Thai

        Yes, for a minute I was like wait…he dated BOTH of the Jones sisters??? lol

    • kid video

      Rasida is an easy target…but keep in mind she was raised by a WW, and probably had little dealings with blk folk…outside of Quincy.
      Same can be said about Richard Pryor’s daugther, Rain…she identifies more with her Jewish mothers upbringing.
      The same for Jennifer Beals.
      Tracee Ellis Ross is a different story.
      #tragicmullatosh*t

      • Thai

        “Tracee Ellis Ross is a different story.
        #tragicmullatosh*t”

        Haha! I love Tracee but I know where you were goin with this and I agree.

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

          where was he goin? I get my pop culture education from this site. Yall gotta expound on sh!t like that lol

      • Sweet GA Brown

        Jennifer Beals???? I gotta google this.

        • Sweet GA Brown

          Belay my last. I was thinking of Jessica Biel. Lol.

          • http://www.twitter.com/mcnairian5 Fiveisthenumber

            Jennifer Beals has some Negro ancestry. *might need to break out the Flashdance on VHS*

            • kid video

              *might need to break out the Flashdance on VHS*

              Most recently, she starred in the Showtime series, The L Word…

              She’s still sexy.

      • Geneva Girl

        You have to add Maya Rudolph to this list. A bi-racial chick with not one black bridesmaid?

        • Sweet James Jones

          I think Maya Rudolph was raised completely by her white half. Her mom died when she was only 4 so she probably wasn’t around her black half a lot. OR, she might just be like that!

          • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

            Maya Rudolph is mixed????

            That’s how white she is. But she embraces it. I like it.

            • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

              Yup. Don’t know who her (white) dad is but Minnie Ripperton is her momz.

              • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

                Her dad Richard Rudolph was a songwriter and record producer. He did a lot of Minnie’s stuff, as well as songs by Teena Marie and New Edition. If you liked New Edition’s song “Lost In Love”, you have him to thank for it.

      • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

        Ever notice that whenever Rain Pryor smiles, she looks just like Tre from The Pharcyde? LMAO!!!!

        • kid video

          Rain Pryor smiles

          I had the biggest crush on her when I use to watch, “Head of the Class”…she was the smart tomboy.

          • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

            I’m showing my age based on the simple fact that I even remember that show. And why isn’t it in reruns now?

            • A Woman’s Eyes

              Head of Class was awesome! Rain’s character belonged in that class.

              • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

                How is this show not released on DVD? It seems as if ABC wanted to forget this show. The hell?!

      • sincereluv4life

        “Tracee Ellis Ross is a different story.
        #tragicmullatosh*t”

        Hey, why u firing shots at her?

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

          She is my Girl! Don’t care what color she is.

      • Asiyah

        I heard Jennifer Beals identifies with both sides. That’s why she even had a Black father on the L word. Ossie Davis! I miss him.

        • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

          Yep, Jennifer does not try to pass. And on her last show, Chicago Code, she also had a Black family. I love Jennifer.

    • Asiyah

      She didn’t date Pac. It was her sister. And she says that she identifies more as Jewish since she attended Hebrew schools.

      • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

        LOL Its hilarious. The very thing that this article is about, it would seem that you all are hypocritically in the process of right now. Yall aren’t kicking dirt in her eyes on some playground sh*t but she’s definitely having shade thrown her way for not being BLACK enough when A.) She’s not black, she’s biracial…. which means that she is as much black as she is white regardless of how society views it. And B.) She is a SELF PROCLAIMED NERD! LOL. But like the subject of the article, all we can see is SHE’S NOT BLACK ENOUGH because being nerdy and different… EVEN GENETICALLY DIFFERENT equates to being deficient in blackness. Is she really doing everything she can to hide her blackness??? I call hypocritical, BS induced, shenanigans. Who is to say whats black enough?? “You know it when you see it” is totally subjective and doesn’t cut it. Jones acts, sings, composes, plays instruments, and writes… She’s extremely accomplished and has stated that racial identity has been a problem for her in the past. Her name is Rashida for f*cks sake. lol

        We’re still stuck in this whole confined concept of blackness SMH. All that aside, I’m only butthurt because I find her infinitely attractive. =)

        • Asiyah

          LOL hey! I’m not kicking her to the curb. I’m not even Black lol. I just remember reading an article once where she said she strongly identifies as Jewish because she was raised by a Jewish mother, attended Hebrew schools, and dated mostly Jewish men. I, for one, consider her biracial and feel she is equally both, but she has a difference of opinion.

          • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

            but she has a difference of opinion.

            Where are you getting this from??

            In her second year at college, she performed in For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide When the Rainbow Is Enuf, which she said was “healing” because she was seen by many blacks as not being “black enough”.

            On her multifaceted identity, she remarked “I have gone through periods where I only feel black or Jewish. Now I have a good balance”.

            Thats from Wikipedia. They can’t post anything on Wikipedia thats not true… guess where I read that…WIKIPEDIA!! ;)

            • Asiyah

              LOL like I said I’m basing it on an article that I read:

              http://www.ajlmagazine.com/content/012007/rashidajones.html

              “Ironically, Jones had “identified strongly with black culture” in high school and considered that criteria in her college choice, but in the end found her niche with Jewish friends. “Junior year, I started dating a guy who was Conservative and had an Orthodox brother and practiced more than I did, was more devout than I was,” she explains. “We had a group of friends who were Jewish so I naturally gravitated towards that culturally and religiously, which was cool because I didn’t have a bat mitzvah. I left Hebrew school when I was 10 because the girls were kind of snotty and I hadn’t gone back to exploring it. Being biracial and Jewish, I’m kind of given permission to explore whatever culture goes along with that. If I were just black and not Jewish I wouldn’t have had that entrée.” ”

              and:
              “I feel pretty strongly about my connection, definitely through the Jewish traditions and the things that I learned dating the guy that I dated. My boyfriends tend to be Jewish and also be practicing,” she muses. “I don’t see it as a necessity, but there’s something about it that I connect with for whatever reason. I think it probably has a lot to do with my mom, the way I grew up, and the family friends that we had and the paradigm that I saw of family life and what I would want for myself, and that was all kind of interconnected.” ”

              I guess it’s safe to say that she considers herself both Black and Jewish, but has a stronger connection with one over the other. Nothing wrong with that.

            • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

              I’m throwing her shade because of the roles she plays, Jay. I have never seen her acknowledge her Blackness in anything. She always plays the White girl, not the bi-ethnic woman, never.

              • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

                I definitely hear you Val… but you can’t blame her for getting the work thats out there. I’m sure the white-girl roles are more plentiful and higher paying. Is that not where the shade should be directed? Can’t blame her for getting that guap.

              • predoctabird

                Is she really playing the White girl or is she just playing undefined woman? If they never acknowledge race, why should we assume that she’s playing a white girl?

  • http://panamaenrique.wordpress.com Malik

    Number 2 is a crucial thing to understand for all Black nerds (male and female alike). Thinking everyone is dumb because they don’t like the same esoteric sh*t that only 26 people across the country have ever heard of is the reason you get slapped not because you spend all that time in the library.

    • Iceprincess2

      Right! That hipster/nerd hybrid is THEE worst. I would mos def give them a wedgie & stuff them in their locker lmao.

    • That Ugly Kid

      I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again.

      In today’s society, it has become extremely popular to be a hipster. This is, by far, the most ironic sh*t I’ve ever witnessed in my entire life.

      • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

        The thing I hate about hipsters is they think their racism is ironic and therefore okay somehow.

        • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

          Hell, keeping it 100, I’d rather deal with an honest-to-goodness racist redneck than a hipster. At least I know where the redneck is coming from, and I know, broadly speaking, that if I avoid him, he’ll stay in his lane. The hipster will swear up and down that they’re OK with Black people, try desperately to take Black culture as their own, but they will strike back the second they think their position is threatened.

          • Sweet James Jones

            WORD! I wanted to slapped the fcuk out of a hipster the other night while my lady and I were having dinner.

          • Asiyah

            I’m on the Todd train today. I can’t stand hipsters. Uggghhhh.

        • http://esotericexistentialist.blogspot.com MPM210

          I hate that sh!t. They try to act as if everything they do is okay, because it’s “ironic”. They’re wrong and they’re annoying.

          • Asiyah

            FOR REAL! They ruined Williamsburgh!

            • Rewind

              I would bomb the hell out of Williamsburg. But I love Sea. So alas, my terorrist dreams die.

      • Thai

        Correction TUK…They THINK they are “hipsters”. I call them McHipsters. Like they think just because they give money to have a tree planted, shop at Urban Outfitters (????), and eat conflict goji berries they all hipster and ish. Naw son!

        • S Emm

          I just DIED at conflict goji berries. I love goji berries in my tea though

      • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

        I find a lot of irony in hypster-haters. Any label just leaves you damned and open for some sort of ridicule.

    • Yoles

      as i have said time and time before… its not smart kids or nerds or nice guys or shy people or unattractive gals and guys or whatever that people don’t like… People don’t like A$$holes that come with that covering… everyone likes nice people!! people like and admire smart people, people think nerds are useful, people want to encourage the shy to be more extroverted, people think unattractive people are safe for friends, co-workers etc… its people who are a$$holes, bemoaning and blaming perfectly acceptable social behaviors as the reason why people don’t like them.. i call BULLSHYT

      • kid video

        i call BULLSHYT

        Somebody had their Starbucks this morning…lol

      • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

        “everyone likes nice people!! ”

        In the movies, sure…but not in real life. Just throwing that out there…

        • http://stanoffewwords@wordpress.com Tristan

          People are naturally a**holes nice people kill that vibe.

          • sincereluv4life

            so true, nice people get on everybody’s d@mn nerves lol. I had to learn that the hard way. I used to be super friendly to everyone all day everyday, but I’ve learned it’s better to fall back a lil’ & get to know ppls b4 u start doling out the special treatment.

            • Around the Way Girl

              :(

              • sincereluv4life

                Hey ATWG it’s true, I’m still nice but I’ve had to learn not to be sooo “extra” all the time. Especially at my job, I was tired of being played & talked about behind my back by the mean girls. Now I keeps all the special treatment for my ppls.

                • Around the Way Girl

                  I see what you’re saying.

        • Yoles

          everyone likes people that treat them nicely… now you might be speaking of “oh chicks dig jerks” etc…but in this forum i am not speaking of se.xual issue but just social issues and i still stand on EVERYONE LIKES NICE PEOPLE… nice=pleasant, well meaning, thoughtful, helpful, sociable, easy to get along with etc…

          • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

            Nah, I meant in terms of society. People may say that, but in reality the nice person almost always ends up being treated like sh*t.

            • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

              People like nice people…but then again they “don’t trust them” because he/she (particularly he) is “too d#mn nice”. It’s just that they expect u to be selfish and @ssholish by default. BUT once they realize that your niceness is genuine then they like you (or don’t mind you I should say) and half of them will try to use you and or take advantage of you since they think you can’t say no….that’s just life tho lol

              • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

                And therein lies the downside of being a nice person…

              • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

                I don’t trust ppl that are too nice, male or female. You know they have at least two bombs in the basement. I don’t touch their staplers regardless of how many times they tell me it’s fine to borrow it.

            • Around the Way Girl

              nice =/= pushover

      • A Woman’s Eyes

        Yoles for President :)
        Todd for Vice-President :)

        • Asiyah

          Makes sense to me!

    • SweetSass

      I look down on people who don’t like Star Trek:The Next Generation. Sue me.

      • Aly

        You are now officially my new best friend…make it so.

        • SweetSass

          Extra points if you watched Quantum Leap and/or Firefly.

          • Aly

            Lol. Quantam Leap, definitely. A friend gave me Firefly on DVD but I haven’t gotten around to watching it. I hear it’s a great show though.

      • http://panamaenrique.wordpress.com Malik

        Sisko > Picard

        • Aly

          Sir… no. Just no.

          • JW

            You’re too nice. Let me do it for you. STFU!

        • SweetSass

          I just couldn’t get into the whole ‘Emissary’ storyline. The Bajorans are just too much into victimization.

          Patrick Stewart is way more quotable.

          I still bark at my microwave… “Tea, Earl Grey, hot.”

          • Jupiter Calhoun, scourge of the Daleks, enemy of the Kilrathi, bane of the Vogons

            I always thought that the Bajorans were analogous to the Israelis, as the Klingons were the Soviets and the Federation was the U.S. / NATO.

            Why are all of you looking at me like that?

            • afronica

              Close. The Bajorans were analogous to the Palestinians, not the Israelis.

        • JW

          HELL NO, I WON’T STAND FOR THAT BLASPHEMY!!

      • JW

        Yes Yes Yes! That show defined my 90s. So many days watch STNG…

  • Juiciest Mango

    “act white” or whatever, but NEVER forget your culture, ever! That is the single most important thing your blackness could ever gift you with.

    • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

      *waves*

      Hiya, AM! :-)

      • Juiciest Mango

        *waving back*!! :)

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

      But..but..but…what if said Black person who acts White has no ties and/or connection to said culture?

      *passes microphone to African Mami*

      • A Woman’s Eyes

        This reminds me of the movie “Good Fences”

        Excellent example of “acting White”

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

          That crazy azz piece of cinema… i just can’t.

    • Asiyah

      Totally agree with AM. Never forget your roots because without them there is no growth.

      • Wild Cougar

        What if your roots are in Idaho?

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

          then you better eat some potatoes and never go on a whitewashed, low-carb diet!

        • Asiyah

          Then you go ahead and learn about Idaho and how to grow potatoes! lol

        • SweetSass

          Unless you’re a member of a Plains Indian tribe then most likely your roots AREN’T in Idaho.

  • Cheech

    The whole experience of being teased for being a high achieving black male is kinda real. When I was in high school, ninjas would roast a fool who got good grades. Hell I had to tutor a dealer who made fun of me every time we met and he always let me know that I wasn’t black alongside the rest of the black awareness club. So yeah it is real

    • Thai

      AGREED. I got it worse cuz i didnt let ninjas and chickens copy off my assignments HOWEVER I do remember many seniors paying me to write their papers and do their PowerPoint haha #hustling…I charged a pretty penny

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

      It’s very real- especially in the South. Ever wonder what happened to those Black kids who were picked on for acting White? They become politicians, LOL!

      • kid video

        Black kids who were picked on for acting White? They become politicians.

        Is this a shot at Artur Davis?

        #bamapolitics

        • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

          Yep- him and Mia Love *snickers*.

          • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

            I’ll give Mia Love a pass if only because I’ve seen the typical dude from where she’s from. If you want to know what it was like to be Paula Broadwell compared to Holly Petraeus and are a heterosexual male, go to her hometown. Trust me, you have to work hard NOT to be a better option than what she grew up around. LOL

            • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

              Damn *in 2 Chainz’ voice*

      • A Woman’s Eyes

        Hah!

    • Asiyah

      But Cheech, it’s real in all cultures. We value knowledge while simultaneously belittling those who seek it.

      • Cheech

        I agree with you but I can really only speak from my side. the ninjas i grew up with only respected your knowledge as long as they could benefit from it

        • Asiyah

          Word.

  • Stacie

    I am a “black nerd” and proud of it. I honestly didn’t realize it as a teen until one of my friends actually criticized me for wanting a particular book for one of my birthdays. This has led me to believe that while I have been given the “side eye” by friends and family for requesting books on most given holidays, for the most part they were very protective of me and have defended me and what they assume is my “odd book behavior” in many situations. This is not to discredit that students don’t get picked on. I’m a former high school English teacher who taught in Detroit (no wise cracks from The Champ about the “D”) and I know how cruel students can be. However, I do know that in a lot of situations “nerds” were often times defended and respected by many students. In the climate of Obama many students are beginning to see that their heros are not only in entertainment but are presidents. Viva la nerd!

    • That Ugly Kid

      Okay. First thing’s first. Beautiful avi. Nice to see more proud female nerds making themselves known.

      “I’m a former high school English teacher who taught in Detroit (no wise cracks from The Champ about the “D”)”

      Sooo, does that mean that the rest of us can make a few? I don’t watch Pistons games for my health you know….

    • Londa

      I totally agree with this statement. Which probably showcases my “acting whiteness” cuz I just said “totally”. But anywhoo…

      For as long as I can remember – well maybe not THAT long – my family has teasingly called me “Black White Girl” or “White Black Girl”, whichever fit the joke they were trying to tell. I’m the chick the senior class would ask to give them details of the book they were supposed to have already read…for a test they had THAT day. On the flipside, I was also the chick that dated a football player. He wasn’t the star, but he damn sure was in heavy rotation. So that gave me the alternate nickname of “Cool Nerd”.

      My point is that I was able to get along with any and every one, from the nerds to the outcasts to the jocks to the cool kids, to the “average “every day kid. Whatever. Only people I didn’t hang to tight with was mean for no reason folks.

      Oh, my real point is that my family would catch a case to protect me. I didn’t ever have to fight (except for the time when I was 12 and beat up an older boy who I threw in one of those giant, outdoor the trash can once I was done with him) cuz my brothers, sisters and cousins would knock a sucka out who tried to mess with me. Why? Cuz Londa was supposed to be about her business getting her studies on so she could go to college and get the hell up on out and BE something. They were proud of me and supported me in all of my endeavors. My family is crazy, but we’ve got each other’s backs.

    • Around the Way Girl

      “However, I do know that in a lot of situations ‘nerds’ were often times defended and respected by many students.”

      Yep. Those few bullies get all the shine and it’s not right.

  • http://pinchmycheekie.wordpress.com Cheekie

    “By acting “White” I’m not referring to using proper English, listening to Weezer instead of Weezy, not using washcloths, or even dating outside of your race. But, there are people who do their absolute best to rid themselves of any apparent trace of Black culture, and those people deserve to be admonished.

    I won’t go into too much detail about how exactly “doing your absolute best to rid yourself of any trace of black culture” is defined, but I will say that its definition is somewhat similar to porn’s: You know it when you see it.”

    SHOLE do know it when you see it. And I’m kinda tired of folks pretending like they don’t. *sips Koolaid-flavored tea*

    • http://www.twitter.com/mcnairian5 Fiveisthenumber

      It’s some black ass ninjas tryin to pass too. I just don’t get it.

    • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

      “I won’t go into too much detail about how exactly “doing your absolute best to rid yourself of any trace of black culture” is defined, but I will say that its definition is somewhat similar to porn’s: You know it when you see it.”

      SHOLE do know it when you see it. And I’m kinda tired of folks pretending like they don’t. *sips Koolaid-flavored tea*”

      *shakes Cheekie*

      Out with it, woman! You know something! Tell it!!!!

      • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

        Nah, it really is like the whole “p*rnography” thing though. You know it when you see it. It’s subjective. No rule is written in stone, It’s all determined on a case by case basis. He was spot on with that conclusion

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

          It’s my whole family…. smh in shame.

      • http://pinchmycheekie.wordpress.com Cheekie

        PA, if you shake me, Skittles come out.

        • Sandpaper

          What happens if I carefully massage both sets of your cheeks?

          • http://pinchmycheekie.wordpress.com Cheekie

            Prolly something that the FCC will have to censor.

            Allegedly.

            • Sandpaper

              You squirt? O_O

              • http://pinchmycheekie.wordpress.com Cheekie

                *404 error*

                • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

                  Very… very well played.

                • Sandpaper

                  LOL! That’s the Cheekie that has been missing around these parts. Stop withholding the goods.

        • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

          I don’t know why, but I chuckled at your comment LOL!

    • Rachmo

      I totally agree with this. By all standards I am a “white” Black girl but I know my history. I met this one dude who was half white and that was cool. However, when he told me I was the first Black woman he ever asked out and knew nothing about Black culture my record skipped. Also my white male friend from Michigan had to explain to him about Toni Braxton. This man is 25 and lives 5 minutes from DC, the “Chocolate City.” I had to be real and tell him sir I respect that you are half white but I’m calling shenanigans. I suggested he visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture and lock it up.

    • http://pinchmycheekie.wordpress.com Cheekie

      ETA: Also… I abhor the notion that folks who use Ebonics are by default… not smart or don’t value intelligence. Any linguist will tell you that technically it’s a legit language, but ya know… since it’s mainly “Black”, that ain’t gone hold up here in sweet American society.

      • https://twitter.com/#!/mackaroto Jay

        Truuuuu… I used to work with a gay dude who went to GA State. He was taking an Ebonics class there and he would explain the rules of pronounciation to me and I was SHOCKED that he had it down. What they were teaching made perfect sense with what I knew from just growing up black. I mean they had it completely down to a science with the accent marks and everything…That’s when I really started to believe the claim that Ebonics isn’t just ignorance. It’s a real deal dialect.

        • http://pinchmycheekie.wordpress.com Cheekie

          “That’s when I really started to believe the claim that Ebonics isn’t just ignorance. It’s a real deal dialect.”

          Exactly.

          • Wild Cougar

            Aint has a Hebrew root, comes from the verb “to be”

  • iamnotakata

    I don’t act “white” but I do speak the English language the way it is intended to be spoken…..and yes when I first moved to hood as* Houston, I received a lot of flack about talking “white” or like a “valley girl”…At first it would catch me off guard but then I later realized I was just dealing with a bunch of idiots, who embrace f*ckery over intelligence..

    • hehe

      So do you sound like a valley girl?

      • http://valsotherblog.wordpress.com Val

        Yeah because Valley Girl accents are kind of annoying no matter who has it. :-)

        • https://twitter.com/#!/IluminatiNYC Todd

          My college professor from Women’s Studies 101 had that accent, though to be fair, she really WAS from the San Fernando Valley in California. It was weird when she would use all these high falutin’ lit crit terms in that accent. It kept me on my toes at least.

        • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

          You live in Cali so I assume you hear it all the time!

    • kid video

      I got a thing for blk chicks(esp dark skin) that talk “valley”…ppl assume you went to a good school/had good parenting.

      Im turned off by women that use too many double negatives in their speech.

      • http://www.youtube.com/user/pervertedalchemist1?feature=mhee Perverted Alchemist

        *shots fired*

      • SweetSass

        So you don’t want none of this?

        *Gestures up and down body*

        Lol

        • Yonnie

          LMAO! Thank you for that.

      • A Woman’s Eyes

        ” Im turned off by women that use too many double negatives in their speech.”

        LMAO

      • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

        I like both. Honestly voices do more for me than grammar

    • JessicaL

      I dated a spanish guy who was adopted by a white family. He had only dated ghetto black girls before me. I called his house to talk to him and his mother picked up. I heard her try to cover the phone and ask in a hushed tone “since when do you date white girls?” I was so embarrassed I hung up.

      • kid video

        I recently came across a white girl(she said she was 27), who grew up around the hood(not to far from where i went to HS), who told me i had, “white boy swagger…”

        I’ve never hung out with any white kids growing up…
        I guess my T- Shirt was too small.(the right size)

        • JessicaL

          I’ve always liked guys who wore clothes that fit and knew how to speak properly. It’s my weakness.

          • kid video

            It’s my weakness.

            Hey JessicaL…im Kid Vid…u come around often?

            • Iceprincess2

              GOH Kid Video, witcho smedium shirts! ;-)

              • kid video

                smedium shirts

                Only when i(accidently) wash them in hot water.

                • Breezy

                  Annnnnnnnnnnnnndddddd slain at smedium shirt. Kid Vidoe: That shirt in the avi shole does look a bit snug :)

                  • JessicaL

                    Lolit’snotsnugitfits.

              • Corey

                Hey get off that man! I happen to have a couple of small-ish shirts myself. Although I only wear mine when I know I been putting in that good gym work….

                • Sweet GA Brown

                  Hey where you been hiding??

                  • Corey

                    Well currently I’m in a place called Harrogate, TN. Not a colored in sight! Lol

                    • Breezy

                      Let me go on a limb and say there maybe some swirl action in your future :)

                    • Corey

                      No more so than usual. Lol. I’m living in Knoxville so there’s still some color in my life.

          • veryaveragebrotha

            “I’ve always liked guys who wore clothes that fit and knew how to speak properly. It’s my weakness.”

            #thingsonlyblackwomensay

            • Around the Way Girl

              lol

        • Sweet GA Brown

          Thats exactly what it was. I bet you had the audacity to wear your pants over your behind too.

      • A Woman’s Eyes

        LMAOOOOOO

    • A Woman’s Eyes

      Valley girl speak has a certain inflection in the voice, though including adding things like “like” in certain spots in your sentences. This is not the same as speaking proper English.

      • Around the Way Girl

        I’d rather listen to Ebonics than a million “likes” any day.

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

          +1 And we get the bad wrap for speaking non-standard English smh

        • Kema

          And like… I dont care if you dont like the way I inflect. *tosses hair*

          • Around the Way Girl

            :-D -_-

            lol

    • niksmit

      I find the phrase “the way it is intended to be spoken” problematic as hell. That’s a tangent, but I just had to go on the record.

      • Around the Way Girl

        It made me wince a little too. I know she just meant “standard English,” but the problem is that language is used as a tool for division and discrimination. So when you say you speak the way a language was intended to be spoken it’s like, well, intended by whom? The oppressor?

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com T.Q. Fuego

          @ Niksmit and ATWG I’m right there with yall. So glad yall said it. I cringe everytime I hear sh*t like that and “proper grammar”. I’m like, you know the Brits don’t speak this “proper English” don’t u? You know language is constantly changing and there IS NO proper English right? You do know that your @ss doesn’t speak the Queen’s English right? Ppl kill me wit that BS. Language is a means of communication. Period. Get over yourself

          • hehe

            +100

            It’s just a way for people to be a$$holes and full of themselves.

        • http://www.alltherightquestions.com Witty Pseudonym

          Not the oppressor… the employer.

    • Boo Radley

      I think I can roll with your basic premise…but why’d you have to come for Houston, ma? I properly conjugate verbs and enunciate to the point that non-natives are often pressed to trace my Houston accent. I was raised on the Southwest, though.

      In any event, English – especially American English- is the most bastardized language on the planet. How, then, can we truly determine “how it’s meant to be spoken?” Even the best-spoken American English sounds base and crass to the British elite; it’s a matter of perspective.

      P.S. Don’t Mess with Texas

      • Wild Cougar

        mmhmm

      • http://www.twitter.com/mcnairian5 Fiveisthenumber

        Fa sho. *dirty bay accent*

      • Britico Chick

        As a Briton, I have to concur with your point on how bastardized American English sounds. LOL.

        Y’all have just gone and made up your own language, you know