As disappointing as Pharrell’s comments were, at least I learned something.
Can we just take maybe like half, if not all, of the energy we are using to critique and/or shame Raven Symoné for expressing the struggles that many people with marginalized identities deal with in their lifetime and put it towards critiquing Pharrell Williams on his problematic “new black” philosophy? That shit is waaaaay more problematic and dangerous to black lives and I haven’t seen enough people calling him out.
"The ‘new black’ doesn’t blame other races for our issues. The “new black” dreams and realizes that it’s not a pigmentation; it’s a mentality. And it’s either going to work for you, or it’s going to work against you. And you’ve got to pick the side you’re gonna be on." - Pharrell Williams
Yea, because white supremacy isn’t responsible for stop and frisk and the criminalization of black bodies isn’t why Aiyana Jones was murdered at 7-years old. The erasure of my neighborhood’s (and many others) history, people, and culture via gentrification isn’t related the fact that people of color, especially poor people of color, are disposable in this countries eyes and there’s no connection between the wealth of white americans in this country and the enslavement of my ancest—*ahem* OUR ancestors, Pharrell.
Shout out to the Women of Color Support Group at Barnard for the dope conversation that led to these thoughts. It happens every Wednesday from 5-630 in Weber Lounge. Come through, come through (no drizzy).