Proud to be Black | Teen Ink

Proud to be Black

January 21, 2015
By Mockingjay_54 GOLD, Mount Laurel, New Jersey
Mockingjay_54 GOLD, Mount Laurel, New Jersey
12 articles 0 photos 17 comments

I am proud to be black. I am un apologetically black. I am unapologetic in your fear of my blackness and my pride. I will not let your predjudice define who i am, or who i will be. I will wear what i want when i want without your perception of what a "thug" or "ghetto black person" is interfere with my choices. I am proud to be black. I will continue to earn good grades and speak with an eloquence and enunciation that surpasses most of my peers and i will still be black. I am not an "Oreo" or white because i am articulate. Do not presume to insult my intelligence or the intelligence of my people by assuming that because I am educated and speak above a seventh-grade level i must not be a member of my own race. And even with my gift of diction i can still slip between African American Vernacular English with the best of them. I am proud to be black. I will reclaim the n word when, where, and how i want. I pride in my people's ability to turn a word filled with four hundred years of bondage and another hundred and fifty years of opression into one of brotherhood within OUR people. you either want inclusion or complete exclusion with a word that was meant to belittle us.You used the word only for us when it had negative connotations meant to dehumanize us, but now that is has a more positive meaning you want to either be apart of it, or to take it from us. Can my people have nothing good for themselves? And no, you cannot say the n word if you are not black. You know why? Because either your people did not suffer under it, or yours were the people who created the word to burden us. black people(and mixed people who identify as black) are reclaiming the n word now. I am proud to be black. My hair is flawless, every kink and coil is exquisite. Whether I choose to braid it, weave it, twist it, or wear it in its lovely natural state is none of your business. I choose to do what i want with MY hair, no one else. And do not dare ask a lightskinned girl if she is mixed because of her beauty and her lightness, as if you cannot be mixed, dark, and beautiful all at once. Do not measure my worth, my beauty, my humanity by the depth of brown in my skin. My surplus of melanin is alluring and radiant. I am proud to be black. Despite the struggles, and the continued struggle, despite the murder of innocents within my community, I am proud to be black. And I will remain Proud to be Black forever.

The author's comments:

This writing is a statement, a shout from the rooftops, a rallying cry for people of the black community. I want everyone to know that we will not be silent.

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