As we watch media today many things can pass right by us not realizing the media puts certain images in our minds and how it impacts our lives. When you really start to look in detail you see how beautiful African American women have changed their appearance to fit the media’s standards. Many celebrities have bleached their skin to have lighter skin; their hair is long, light in color with beautiful perfect curls. However, the message media and role model celebrities are relaying is that if you are dark with natural hair, you have the wrong color and are not considered beautiful. Skin bleaching has become a cosmetic daily routine for many African American women.
In China, those that have lighter skin are considered of high class and skin bleaching is an epidemic. The same goes for Hispanic media – Hispanics are made up of many different colors, some who appear to be African Americans. Yet, on the soap operas, what do we see? We see more of the blonde, blue-eyed actors and actresses.
This video is called The Assassination of Black Women. Although some of the pictures may be questionable, I think the creator has a point and demonstrates clearly the message that is being spread across to many young “dark” African American girls.
In this video, you see the The View with Whoopi Goldberg discussing why women do not wear their natural hair. Whoopi mentions, “There is a deeper issue.” Unfortunately, as many of these necessary discussions end, it ends in joking as if it is no big deal.
This goes back to our previous discussion of assimilation. We are losing a part of ourselves as we assimilate into the preferred, more “attractive” culture instead of sticking to our own culture and really representing who we are and who were made to be.
In Crossing Color Lines, Chase Cain learns the hard way that becoming more “white” is not necessarily the easier route, and that it comes with its own set of problems. Others can learn a lesson from his story. It takes strength and courage to be who you are, avoid the pressure to assimilate, and strive to succeed on your own terms. It is a challenge, but one that is that much sweeter once achieved.