African- Americans [notice that I didn’t say Afrikaans, Jamaicans, Haitians, etc. but good ol’ U.S. of A Black Americans] are so brainwashed that:
Nappy has become a derogatory description in their language. It is a negative attribute to have. Though it is the hair in it’s natural state, it has actually become quite “unnatural” and uncommon for a woman to keep it that way. Women who wear their hair sans the process are often depicted/viewed as less beautiful and unfeminine… ridiculed by family, friends, and strangers. Men often express dislike for it, preferring a woman with “long flowing straight” tresses. Many woman buckle beneath the pressure only to later go natural in life. I’ve certainly noticed a continuous mass exodus in my mother’s age group [40+] of ladies forgoing the hair crack for chemical free, healthy hair. Most of them who have not or do not are those married and forbidden by spouses. So each year that passes, the African-American woman begins to look less African and more American.
Personally speaking, I’ve chosen to forego putting something that can dissolve a soda can so close to my brain or directly in my pores as <—- that is how I see it. I do not feel superior to women who monthly perm or that I’m “more connected”. I see it as a matter of health but I, in regards to vanity, am not my brothers and sisters keeper— do what makes you feel good but safely. However, where I don’t give it a second thought I notice when I become more beautiful and prettier: When I straighten my hair. Oh compliments come at me like the scent of apples in an orchard. It isn’t that I’ve transformed but that I’ve conformed. Muscle memory triggers there brain saying now she looks proper! During the early days of emancipation and the civil rights movement, blacks who looked less ethnic were able to get better positions thus beginning this elitist mentality and negative outlook on hair (amongst others). Slick that shit down and straighten that mess out the public cried! European yourself out, i.e. “White is Right” or get left further behind. One has only to open a magazine, as I’ve previously written, to see colored faces with hair that is soooooooo NOT the truth.
My niece has to choose between seeing the modern Farrah Fawcett waves and layers cut or the Interracial green or blue eyed chicks with long curly afros. She looks at her hair and thinks it is ugly unless it is straight combed or very neatly corn-rowed. I am her glamorous, creative “Tee-Tee” so she views me as attractive both ways. However, when we are out she repeats what she’s heard other adults and (the parrots they’ve trained)their children say. She leans in and snickers, “Auntie Kim her hair ugly ain’t it?” and when I ask why she thinks that, the answer is always because it’s nappy. I look at who she’s referring to. The black girls with their ebony kinks spun into cotton candy, confectionary pony tail perfection; the grandmothers in the store; the young ladies. Who?!? She doesn’t know she speaks of us all. There in lies the rub.
Nappy is not an insult.
Does not mean ugly.
Black people, nappy is not ugly.
If Nappy Hair is bad so is Black Skin, just think about it for a moment. If you modify yourself, don’t deceive yourself into forgetting your “roots”. I could no more criticize natural hair than I could this wide nose or full lips, these hips, the rhythmic way I walk, the timbre of my voice. Because Black people should be allowed to look like black people.
My name is Kg and my kinks, coils, and curls be nappy….