We all care way too much about the Knowles-Carter family. Don’t get me wrong, I think their music and impact on pop culture is important, but if they’re not performing, I could care less about them and their baby with a weird name. How we got here is beyond me, but I’m not one of those people who will begrudge anyone’s obsession with celebrity lives. It’s not for me, but I get it, and every now and then I make an exception, I get into it too.
That fight between Solange and Jay-Z as Beyonce stood by in an elevator is a perfect example of when I make an exception.
By any standard of rubbernecking, what we saw take place in that elevator was worthy of watching. When’s the last time you saw someone attack another person in public, let alone an elevator? When’s the last time any of you have seen a woman attacking a grown man like Solange attacked Jay? How many times have you seen an actual physical fight between your family members? In case you are wondering, here are my answers to those questions:
At least a year ago
Two times in my entire life
I understand that what took place between two-and-a-half famous people is what put this over the top. But let’s not underrate what actually took place. This was not only rare footage of Jay-Z, Beyonce, and Solange, this was rare footage of people period. There’s a reason a company like Worldstar is so popular: We like watching even normal people fight, especially when it is a woman who is making a man look, well, weak.
Few people are more popular of a choice than Jay-Z and Beyonce in the pantheon of think piece subjects. I’ve done think pieces on both of them myself. But I’d like to think a seasoned professional like myself has moved past such a saturated topic, so when I saw the video my first inclination was to leave it alone and find another subject to write about.
But then I saw the reactions to the video and the lights in my head began flickering on. Once again I was about to make an exception, because after seeing the video, then reading and hearing the numerous reactions, then seeing the video again, I began to conjure up a thought about this whole mess that I haven’t really seen discussed:
Everyone wants to applaud Jay-Z for not hitting Solange back or physically reacting. All up and down my social media timelines I saw some variation of either Jay-Z being applauded for his restraint or being shaded and accused of not physically reacting because he has too much to lose. This was a classic case of damned-if-he-did and damned-if-he didn’t.
Both these arguments make sense but after watching the tape myself, I have another theory: Had Jay-Z fought back he would have come away with more than just a sore jaw. There probably would have been a busted lip and a black eye.
I am firmly enrolled in the school of thought that believes no man should physically touch a woman, and even if he is being attacked by one, he needs to find the most non-violent way possible to diffuse it. This is not just because no man looks good coming away from getting the best of a woman, but also because if he doesn’t get the best of her, the shame he will feel will know no bounds. Where I come from, I’ve seen men who look perfectly capable of fighting get tossed into the bushes by women. Is it common? No. But it’s not rare and as much I’m here for all of us who want to say never hit a woman, we should consider a woman can whoop a mans ass too.
Granted, this isn’t the case for all women, probably not even the case for most women, but why would any man ever want to find out if their woman is an exception to our flawed theory, that just because women aren’t as physically strong as us they are therefore less skilled when it comes to throwing hands (and feet).
While I do believe Jay-Z would have gotten the best of Solange, I don’t believe he would have done so without taking a couple of lumps himself. Solange fought like she has fought not only a few times in her life, but one of those times was recently. The person in that elevator who knows her best, didn’t step in because she knows she couldn’t take little sister one-on-one. And I’m convinced Jay knew too, before he got the best of her, he was going to have to be on the receiving end of a couple of haymakers and one good kick.
We forget that some women know how to fight. Yes, men are naturally stronger, but we all know strength does not beget victories when it comes to fighting. Solange looked like she knew how to throw a punch AND take a punch, because look at the video. Do you see how scared she isn’t? She looks like she not only fought guys bigger than her, she’s fought guys bigger than Jay-Z has fought. I’m not even entirely sure Jay has fought or if he has back in his Marcy Project’s days, he won. I’ll assume, because I’m a fan of his, that he knows a little bit about fisticuffs, but I’m also going to assume based on what I saw in that elevator, Solange would be a formidable opponent.
So the next time someone is trying to give a man props for not hitting back on a woman who is laying into him like La Femme Nikita, consider this: Some men don’t fight a woman back because the only thing more humiliating than being a woman beater is being beaten up by a woman.