My Murder on BBC last night told the story of Shakilus Townsend and how he died at the hands of a mindless gang of thugs. The fact that fair-skinned actress Simona Zivkovska played the role of Samantha seemed to throw people off the point of the story. During the show, people tweeted using the hashtag #mymurder.
We decided to get involved and this is what we have to say:
Some people were divided on the benefit of showing the docudrama asserting that it was affirming the stereotype of young black men as thugs. I personally hoped that it would deter any young person who thought of joining a gang. And more importantly, I hoped that any young girl, who would find herself in a situation where she would be called upon to set up another human being, would think twice.
I followed the #mymurder thread, which was trending at one point. One thing stood out more than anything else; some black people are hard-wired into the colourism matrix. From that hashtag sprung another: #StopLighties2012.
People had clearly missed the point of the docudrama and instead focussed on the fact that the actress who played ‘honey trap’ Sam was depicted by a light-skinned girl. Cue the shadeism tweets.
People started tweeting that ‘lighties’ couldn’t be trusted. One person tweeted “lighties are the root of all evil.”
Another person tweeted “No lightey. no knifey.”
The topic of the drama had devolved into a shade issue. I was thoroughly disappointed. All I took from this was that some young people have the attention span of guppies and seem quite committed to continuing to enforce the shade divide started by European slave masters so long ago.
In the fight against shadeism, we have miles to go before we sleep.
I have been forced to join Twitter to ‘win friends and influence people’. To be honest from day one I have hated the medium. It is a place where people, especially celebs can influence others and go almost unchecked.
When I looked at people’s profiles and saw team light skin or team dark skin, I knew I was entering an area I didn’t want to be a part of. My cousin sees it as an opportunity to influence and change people’s mindsets. I see it as we have already lost from the time these motherfuckers are drawing such strong lines in their profiles.
These children of the matrix are being raised to believe that if you have lighter skin you automatically get a free pass. A pass which they imagine, allows them to feel superior to dark-skinned people and to openly abuse them about their skin colour. It’s worse than racism because it’s abuse from our own people.
When members of the same community are busy denigrating each other based on the tone of our skin colour, when do we find time to unite that community? Do people actually want unity in the community?
I get that we do not subscribe to the one-drop rule in the UK. Mixed race people are able to define themselves in any way they please. It doesn’t give them the right, however, to be dropping shit on black people.
No matter how they define themselves they are still black to a racist. And when being attacked by a racist they would expect black people to come out in force to support them. You can’t have it both ways!
Naturally light brown people are on the same band wagon so it’s not surprising that some dark-skinned people feel a pressure to bleach their skin. Especially when you see confused celebs like Rihanna and Beyonce go from being one shade of brown to a lighter one.
Maybe TV is not the medium to teach people how to come together as one. Maybe we need to stop blogging and get out there and bang some heads together, metaphorically speaking of course.
As the old saying goes ‘I wouldn’t want to be part of a club that would have me as a member’. If you wanted to categorise me, then you would lump me in the light skin box but #TeamLightskin can kiss my beautiful black ass!
I didn’t watch the show because I already know the story and didn’t want to wind myself up again. Instead, I jumped on the internet to be wound up by the blatant abuse of light-skinned people against their dark skin brethren. I am disgusted and ashamed of them.
Someone has been filling light skin people’s heads with the notion that they may one day rule the world. I don’t think so! As long as they continue with their slavery mentality they are not inheriting anything.
What these uncultured people need to do is read a damn book. Study black history, see where we are coming from and understand that the shadeism phenomenon is setting us back.
Instead of bridging the gap between whites and blacks, some mixed-race people are striking out to create their own race and dismissing the worth of black people in the process.
I never wanted children but I’m thinking now to go and adopt me some beautiful coco babies and raise them to only put value in dark skin. That would mean I’d be joining the other stupid club #TeamDarkskin. But it’s my knee jerk shadeist reaction to idiocy I don’t see ending anytime soon.
Some of these comments on Twitter cut me deep and I openly despair.
“This #StopLighties2012 is an excuse for ugly girls to cuss them ! Your still not gonna get attention init !”
“That is why Anakin went to the darkside!!! #stoplighties2012 hahhaha i have to admit there are some pretty ones out there though -____-“
I have to blame the parents and the aunties and uncles who fill up kid’s head with false notions of external beauty. I know it’s not just my grandma who told me my skin colour would take me far. Luckily, my beautiful coco brown father put more stock in books. Being lesbian, I was never gonna marry some stupid rich man who only considered me for my looks.
So to sum up:
Goddess grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.
Breath in with anger and out with love!