Note from BW of Brazil: Reading texts like the one below indicate that the black Brazilian population is continuing to put the idea that “love having no color” to question and instead beginning to see it as yet another form the black/white oppression/domination relationship. Historically, black people have always been indoctrinated to desire the love of the white, as Sunday night’s article well illustrated, but increasingly more and more people are starting to question why this is and what it really means.
Today’s piece reminded me of an interaction I once had working out with a friend in a gym in suburban Detroit. My friend and I had been pumping iron for about 30 minutes when I noticed one particular white woman who had been eyeing me for several minutes. I ignored the glances because I had absolutely no interest whatsoever. She was short, chunky and rather average-looking. And to top it off, my experimentation with swirling had ended several years before. But even as I avoided her eye contact, as my friend and I walked across the room to another machine, I ended up crossing her path. As I walked passed her, she made her move, grabbing my hand and asking, “Hi, what’s your name?”. I replied “Marques” and politely removed her hand from mine. After the incident, my friend, who was in fact married to a white woman, and I discussed the message in this encounter.
Why did rather dumpy looking woman believe she could holla at me? Well, in the 1990s, I remember the trend of seeing numerous black men dating big, fat, sloppy looking white women in suburbs of Detroit. It was literally material for a Chris Rock routine years later. In Rock’s “Kill The Messenger” show he joked about black men who loved them some “big Beckys”: “We’ll fuck any white girl. As a matter of fact the bigger the better. It’s just more white to love.” In my mind, that’s what was going through the mind of the woman at the gym. “I’m white, overweight. He’s black. Black men LOVE chunky white women!” Naw…not all black men! What that encounter has in common with today’s piece is this idea of, “I’m white, you should be overjoyed to get with me.” Have you ever experienced this? Think about it and what that means as you read the piece below.
And when love has color …
By Nana Raiza
Have you ever noticed that when we black people announce that we only have relationships with other black people it always provokes controversy, especially for whites?
It has always been common to hear from other black people, before having a relationship with some white person, ask: “but does x white person get with blacks?”. That phrase always came up casually and nothing questionable in my life, as did the phrase: “Sorry, I don’t get with blacks. It’s a matter of preference” always came from whites without causing much astonishment.
I have always understood that whites maintain their community, that is, their continuity from this “preference” in a natural and acceptable way. And despite the genocidal racist history of these ways of maintenance of whites, it never sounded radical for a white to just “prefer” other white people. However, the idea of preference begins to be treated as a “radical” and an absurd agenda, when we choose to relate only to ours and when it is our continuity that is at stake. And then here come whites from all corners, with the same statement on the tip of the tongue that “o amor não tem cor” (love has no color) and suddenly every white becomes the great defender of the “purity of love.”
Whites are angry not because love among blacks excludes them from the receptive end of affection, but rather because it breaks our function of affective/sexual bondage to them. In the structure that guarantees to the white a place of power and that gives blacks the place of submission, what causes radicalism in this statement is not whether relationships between different races is right, or even on how this love is constructed. The revolt comes from the fact that for whites the right of choice is given by whoever has power and by us subverting this white logic it is possible to observe the real root of the questioning of the white, which is in fact – “How do you dare not choose one of us? How do you prefer a black over a white?”.
In a country where most relationships are between members of the same race, seeing black people relating to each other is not uncommon. But by stating strategically that we love ours, we put whites in their place of other in relation to us – and we know how much white people hates not being the center – so their reaction is completely focused on maintaining our submission. Only when whites see all the basic racist theory of superiority being questioned, their superiority, that whomever we choose to relate to becomes absurd.
Understanding that we are fed historically and coercively by all sources, that white people are superior and that the forms of possible love are given by them – on the basis of romantic love created by the white – is the initial step for us having control over our continuity, in addition to a great indication of the brutal process that the relationship with white people is. However, understanding how each white man reacts is the best way to observe his individual role in maintaining racism, which is constructed daily and constantly. And it is also another important step in the process of strengthening our people. Whites respond equally to the structures generated by them. And to escape any norm and expectation of them will always be considered radical for whites.