Contemplating "The New Michael Jackson"

(Thanks Field Negro and Grio!!!)

Um, Bey...explanation, please?

By all means borrow from African culture for your dance and music -- white kids love that! But when it comes to your looks, let's go with the whiter, the better.
Of course Beyoncé cannot control the color skin she was born with, nor any stigmas attached to it, but the persistent brightening brings back memories of another talented and world-renowned pop star who jumped from black to white somewhere around his third album. Coincidence much?

The truth is Beyoncé is no Michael Jackson. Beyoncé probably isn't bleaching her skin or suffering from vitiligo, but she is complicit in the editorial decisions that light her up until she looks dusty, or Photoshop her photos a few color grades fairer than her true hue.

Comments

  1. I don't have anything to say other than, taking from African cultures for pure entertainment while looking Caucasian as hell is disrespectful and plain stupid. Not to mention the recent blackface photoshoot she did.

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  2. @ Matia

    Thank you. It's like selling your birthright for bad pottage.

    I gave up on Beyonce... years ago.

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  3. I was confused at first because I thought she was Shakira. When I looked closer, I was surprised. Because she was fine like she was. Bad enough she sought to lose weight because "somebody" thought that she was too "thick" or "too curvy." I would remind people that she is a hella dancer and dancers have muscles. She has control over how she is physically portrayed, so as Martia said, she is complicit in this travesty. Personally, I don't give a rat fart how Beyonce looks, but my ten-year old niece adores her. The effect Beyonce's whitewashing might have on her is of concern to me.

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  4. I recently found this video: http://vimeo.com/24155797
    Slightly relevant?

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  5. Personally, I don't give a rat fart how Beyonce looks, but my ten-year old niece adores her. The effect Beyonce's whitewashing might have on her is of concern to me.

    Why is that POC in the biz often forget this?

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  6. @ Martia

    I can't wait for this documentary to come out.

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  7. Wow she done changed huh? Have you guys seen Lil Kim or Vybz Kartel they look worse.

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  8. Why is that POC in the biz often forget this?

    Money. Lots if money.

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  9. I was confused at first because I thought she was Shakira.

    I have this sinking feeling she wants to actually be Shakira.

    I mean, what is she still doing with the blonde look? Why hasn't she moved onto something else yet?

    @ Student

    Money. Lots if money.

    All the more reason why I respect Zoë.

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  10. I hate to type this, but at first glance, I thought that was Britney Spears in the picture on the right. Damn, I need glasses.

    Ankhesen, many POC in the biz are either too ignorant or too selfish to realize that like it or not, they are adored by young people. It's often not about teaching AND entertaining the youth; it's about making money, and sadly, you have to sell out in order to sell.

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  11. Even her already surgically altered nose is too much. It needs to be photoshopped out. sigh.. and then people have the audicity to tell me I should "forget about it" and "its not a big deal."

    As if this nonsense doesn't effect me in every day life.

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  12. All the more reason why I respect Zoë.

    Mmmm... to me, this is all the more reason why capitalism in many cases drives racism and vice versa.

    Everyone believes they have too much integrity to be bought but everyone has a price. Thats because capitalism is a marketplace, not a a community. Juts like with slavery it puts a dollar value on human potential and worth.


    And Zoe is in position of privilege in that regard. Her skin is naturally light so she doesn't have to bleach it. And she has facial feature that are not overtly African.

    It's easier for someone like her to decide what roles to take when even in the limited roles available to PoC she is seen as preferential by the majority.

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  13. And Zoe is in position of privilege in that regard. Her skin is naturally light so she doesn't have to bleach it. And she has facial feature that are not overtly African.

    It's easier for someone like her to decide what roles to take when even in the limited roles available to PoC she is seen as preferential by the majority.


    I disagree because her success is very recent, very new, and after a very long time. The history of Zoe's career has predominantly comprisedbeing neglected and forgotten in Hollywood, and basically struggling for roles. How quickly folks forget just how quickly they used to forget her. When she was cast as Uhura, she was no doubt expected to be neglected and forgotten yet again, hence her 2-3 lines and lack of action sequences. After all, this was supposed to be the white boys' movie, and they couldn't have the requisite Uhura getting in the way. But when her popularity skyrocketed, especially after Avatar, the whitening attempts began, as did the sudden preference towards her.

    Remember, a beautiful black woman (regardless of her shade) is feared above all in Hollywood, so long as she's black and proud. Beyonce was a force of nature until she let herself be domesticated by the blond and pale. It's no surprise that we're witnessing this abomination right as her career slowly but surely dies on the vine.

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  14. This might post twice because my connection is being retarded.

    Mmmm I don't think this is true. I mean we all know white people like their negroes to be "white but dipped in chocolate" or "light bright and nearly white" just because of the narcissism/racisim that the cultures most of them belong to inspire.

    Zaldana had to struggle but she's young and hasn't been around that long. Most actors have a hard time breaking in. Most PoC actors have a harder time. I didn't used to ignore her, I remeber her from way back when she was in "Center Stage" and "Drum Line".

    But do you honestly think her increased visibility, doesn't have to do with her appearance? You don't think any dark skinned actresses of equal beauty and talent auditioned for "Star Trek"? Small part or not it's still in a summer blockbuster. And most female roles in summer blockbusters for women are meager because it's a sausage fest. Whitewashing always happens after PoC become successful anyway. It's divide and conquer like always.

    The fact she's light skinned and can pull a "passe blanc" puts her at an advantage over an actress of equal beauty and talent who is dark skinned and cannot pull a "passe blanc".

    History and reality prove this. It's why Halle Berry is more famous than Angela Basset. It's why black sororities had a "brown paper bag test" for admittance.

    The fact that she can even pull a "passe blanc" whether she chooses to or not is a position of privilege in an industry where appearance is everything. In light of that she has more of an opportunity to make the right choice than someone who is not in her position, would be.

    It's easy to make the right choice, when you have one.

    It's a meager position of privilege to be in but one that can be used to her advantage none the less. Though she'll still face limited opportunities as a PoC and discrimination she can be the "token exotic" without jarring the sensibilities of a white audience too much.

    Zaldana has never denied being black, but neither has Beyonce. And Zaldana wears weave, the same as her natural hair color but not the same length or texture I think.

    I'm not decrying or applauding Zaldana or Beyonce. I think both are trying to make the best decisions in an industry that offers them limited opportunities.

    In a culture that espouses "success at all costs" I don't blame individuals for doing what it takes to make it. We all have privileges though, some more than others.

    I mean you can't control the hand you are dealt in life. You can only control how you play it. But that's the precisely the problem.

    Life shouldn't be a game. And that's basically what capitalism does to ALL people. And capitalism by it's very nature creates or exacerbates racism and every other ism. And it America the game is rigged. So the only opptions people have to "win" is to cheat, or hope they get lucky. And everyone "cheats" it's just a matter of the degree and severity to which they do it, and how low they are willing to sink. You have to in order to play.

    You can adapt to the system, make the system adapt to you, or leave it entirely. For Most people the first is the most common choice, especially if the alternative means not being able to pay the light bill.

    You'd be surprised what choices people will make when something important, like a career is on the line. And in capitalism everyone has a price. That's inextricably intertwined with racism.

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  15. Is that other picture really Beyonce? Are you f**king kidding me? Lord God almighty. Help us JESUS!

    I liked it better when she did the blackface.

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  16. @ Brotha Wolf:

    So I'm not the only one who thought the second image was of Britney Spears? Scary shit huh?

    I feel that MJ's situation is different and more complex than others let on. He's of the generation of stars that started very young. And he had a lot of hate toward his father which may have manifested in self-hatred not just of his race but of almost every part of himself. I don't discount internalized racism, most of us POC suffer from this to varying levels. I mean, this is a white supremacist society, it's like a daily dosage of poison you intake just to live another day.

    Anyway, I don't really follow Bey. She's a terrible actress, she doesn't really make music that motivates me. That "girls run the world" video is solely for male entertainment. Also, if we run the world why do we still refer to ourselves as "girls"? Ciara in "Like a Boy" came closer I think.

    Also, speaking of Shakira, I didn't know until recently that she was a natural morena. So even she seemed to trade her natural hair color for more white-oriented success.

    The saddest thing to happen of late is Sammy Sosa. Now that . . . was absolutely awful. The things we do to "be normal."

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  17. I didn't even recognize that picture on the right as Beyonce. O_o

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  18. Lol Marona, I wanted to cry after making that mistake.

    At first, and I hate to admit this as well, I didn't like Destiny's Child because of the whole "All about Bey" thing. Then, it REALLY was all about Bey, and now it's maddening. Now, we hear of this, and it's like the world has gone mad with lightness...and whiteness.

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  19. Yes I thought it was Britney Spears too.

    "The saddest thing to happen of late is Sammy Sosa. Now that . . . was absolutely awful."

    What happened to Sammy Sosa?

    [googles him]

    WHAT THE FUCK?!!!!!!

    Was he auditioning for the Joker or something. I'M DONE!!!!!!!

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  20. I thought it was Avril Lavigne on the right!

    I'm really disappointed in Beyonce for letting them change her skin tone so drastically. No self-respecting POC would allow anyone to do that. This girl is looking increasingly stupid to me. What's more depressing is that despite her actions, she has so many fans; what does that say about the state of the black community?

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  21. Also, speaking of Shakira, I didn't know until recently that she was a natural morena.

    I always wondered about that! *shakes head*

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  22. @ Student

    But do you honestly think her increased visibility, doesn't have to do with her appearance?

    Are you deliberately missing my point?

    To clarify: my focus on the celebrity-in-question's pride. Light-skinned or not, straight-haired or not, skinny or not, Zoe gets my props because she's black and proud. She could try to play the ethnic ambiguity card (and fail pathetically), but she doesn't. And she's not fucking with her skin, whether chemically or digitally. Yeah, she's already light, but she could always try to get lighter and go blonde - she's not doing that. She's just being who she really is and proud of it - and that is all that matters to me.

    Now, if we wake up tomorrow and we find that she's started bleaching and talking excessively about her 2-3 drops of non-black heritage, then we'd have an issue. But for now, she gets props.

    As for her length of struggle - she is a WoC struggling in Hollywood and that's all I really need to know. They're all struggling and at some point, they all hit a glass ceiling, regardless of their looks - that's why I started my whole Underappreciated Actress of Color Series in the first place: they're all struggling, and some of them (like Nicole Lyn) can pull a passe blanc. Zoe is doing well now, but she could be doing even better, not films with Michael friggin' Vartan. While Star Trek was one step forward, Colombiana is about 9 steps back.

    And while you personally may remember her from her days of yore, most people do not. They recognize her now because of her newfound popularity, but before, most people couldn't remember what she'd been in, much less her name. Her light skin and naturally straight hair were initially getting her nowhere, hence her tendency to often model rather than act.

    Furthermore, East Asians tend to be very light-skinned, with bone-straight hair, but they're virtually nonexistent in Hollywhite - black people have more visibility here than they do. People always seems to overlook this little tidbit. Hollywhite's war is with color, regardless of the shade. And solid unity amongst POC is what's going to solve our colorist issues, not downplaying the struggles and accomplishments of our [naturally] lighter-skinned kin.

    The ones who bleach, however, are fair game.

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  23. @K. Have you seen this? I thought this was appropriate for the discussion.

    http://vimeo.com/24155797

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  24. And Keanu-99%-of-the-time-passe-blanc-Reeves. He's fair game too.

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  25. @ Neo-Prodigy

    Yes, I have. Martia posted it up above. I'm eager to see this.

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  26. Furthermore, East Asians tend to be very light-skinned, with bone-straight hair, but they're virtually nonexistent in Hollywhite - black people have more visibility here than they do. People always seems to overlook this little tidbit. Hollywhite's war is with color, regardless of the shade. And solid unity amongst POC is what's going to solve our colorist issues, not downplaying the struggles and accomplishments of our [naturally] lighter-skinned kin.

    Thats not a really a fair comparison.

    East Asians have more visibility in their own countries. Which is why they usually choose to market themselves there. There is more competition, but they have more opportunities than they would have in America where they are the minority. And usually being from the United States works to their advantage anyway.

    Utada Hikaru started out here in NY. Then when she wasn't selling, she went to Japan and blew up. Cross Over success would be nice, and I loved her American albums, but it's not necessary for her at this point, I mean professionally.

    Most East Asians don't give a shit about mainstream success in Hollywhite anyway and I can't blame them. Hollywhite is constantly trying to copy them anyway. Foreign Cinema in general Hollywhite is trying to copy.

    Hispanics(of all races) can do crossover back to their native countries to a degree...but they probably won't make as much money.

    African Americans can't really do this at all. All the viable markets we have available to us are in European/European Settler countries where we face the same kind of prejudice. So the stakes are much higher and opportunities are few and far between.

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  27. I have 4 granddaughters. Three of my granddaughters are light-skinned and one of my granddaughters has a very dark complexion. She has a quiet temper- and she's an introvert like me. She has a beautiful nature and a loving smile. Watching that clip made me want to cry.

    It’s bad enough to hear “darkie” from a white person and feel that sting. But to hear it from our own is just shameful. I hope and pray that my grandchild learns to love herself despite the negativity towards her skin tone. But she's only 7 and I'm all too aware of the messages she receives on a daily basis (from media) that threatens her sense of esteem.

    But there is one thing she can trust no matter what. And that is, her Poppa loves her without reservation.

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  28. And solid unity amongst POC is what's going to solve our colorist issues, not downplaying the struggles and accomplishments of our [naturally] lighter-skinned kin.

    The ones who bleach, however, are fair game.


    I don't think unity alone will solve colorism issues in PoC communities. If only it was that easy.

    I'm not disagreeing that Beyonce deserves to be ridiculed. But that's not addressing the problem. Which is Capitalism.

    As long as the wealthy/powerful/famous are "light bright and nearly white", as they are in most of the Americas at least, skin lightening/whitening of appearance will continue to be a problem, especially amongst the poorest of our communities. As is the case in Latin America, and the Afro Carribean.

    How is PoC unity helping the the predominantly dark skinned poor in ghettos in Haiti? Or Jamaica? Or any African diaspora community where the powerful and wealthy are predominantly(not completely) mulatto and look like Zoe/Beyonce or some permutation there of?

    Like her or hate her Beyonce projects the image of Wealth and Success, which is what America is all about. So everyone who wants those things, and the acceptance that they bring will look at the only examples they have available to identify with. People like Zoe Zaldana AND Beyonce.

    Valuing wealth and success above all else is the problem. It's precisely that fucked up materialistic value system that drives people to change themselves in order to be accepted.

    [W]e can make clear what peaceful coexistence means. It means living in peace and friendship with another kind of society--a fully integrated society where the people control their destinies, where poverty and illiteracy have been eliminated, and where new kinds of human beings develop in the framework of a new level of social living.
    -- Quoted in Paul Robeson Speaks, p. 338


    I'm trying to put the problem in perspective and that problem is capitalism.

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  29. @ Student

    Yes, but if you read Asian American bloggers, you'll notice that they want to see themselves represented right here in the country where they've lived all to most of their lives. They don't just want to see Asians, but Asian Americans who dress, sound, and act just the way they do.

    Because that's a common complaint amongst most POC living in America - they don't all have a global view like you and even I do. Granted, I'm all about the global perspective, but not all Americans of color agree. They don't want to have to up and move or rent a film in another language to see themselves or people like themselves, or to just see POC at all. Most want to flip on their TV or go to the theater right down the street and see people just like themselves represented in media by actors from here, paid by studios based here - and I can understand that perspective as well.

    So sticking within American media, which Asian-American chanteuse can claim Beyonce's level of success? Which Asian American actress has Zoe's level of popularity? Kristy Wu doesn't. Michelle Kruziec doesn't. Lynn Chen doesn't. Janina Gavankar doesn't. Jenna Ushakowitz is trying, but in addition to be Asian, she's grown curvy and voluptuous, and we all know how that goes in Hollywhite. And notice how Lucy Liu's fame just plummeted out of the blue.

    But let's go global for a moment, shall we? For reasons I cannot fathom, many members of the artistic world of color actually are hell-bent on breaking into Hollywhite - I'm not sure why. For example, tith the success Rain's had in Asia, I don't know why he still longs to conquer Hollywhite - I don't see the point. Maybe there's something only folks in the industry know/understand. Personally, I wish he'd adopt the attitudes of Andy Lau and Takeshi Kaneshiro who say, "Fuck it" because - once again - Hollywhite just can't seem to properly handle Asian characters. I mean we're talking about an institution that won't even let Asians play Asian characters in Asian stories.

    I don't know if it's about the money or the prestige or what, but artists of color both here and abroad most assuredly do not have our dismissive attitude towards Hollywhite, most likely because we're not in the biz and we don't know the whole sordid story.

    Which brings us back to our post about Bey & Co. and why POC willingly submit themselves to - essentially - racial/ethnic mutilation. For example, Bey has money. She has fame. She's done both music and film. What could she want now so badly that she sits quietly when her visage is defiled?

    We understand why Michael did it; his family was beyond fucked up and he had issues. With her spoiled, pampered-as-hell-ass, what's Bey's excuse?

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  30. How is PoC unity helping the the predominantly dark skinned poor

    It's not because we don't know it, we don't have it, and we're not going to get it by bickering.

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  31. http://youtu.be/6OJku5fHtRw

    In African Diaspora societies with problems in income disparity skin bleaching is very common. And lets leave racism out of it for a second and talk about the Elephant in the room that no one seems to want to address: Class Distinction.

    PoC can't be "united" if income disparity isn't decreased because they won't have equal opportunities. That's a proven fact. Under capitalism, even with reform movements, all that has changed(slightly) are the faces of the powerful.

    I don't know why people don't like addressing this. When everyone who is successful is white that's what everyone will try to be. Ridiculing people who bleach their skin is just ignoring the underlying issue.

    If your skin color resigned you to a certain station in life like the bitter poverty that exists in ghettoes in Haiti/Dominican Republic/Jamaica/ and any other PoC communities, that you could never get past, you would hate it and try to change it too.

    Thats all people who bleach their skin are really looking for. Acceptance. Maybe the problem is that acceptance "costs" something in the first place.

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  32. I'm trying to put the problem in perspective and that problem is capitalism.

    If only it were that simple. The pursuit of wealth is easy to blame alone, but when the person is question already has wealth, then we have to take other factors into account. Michael had all kinds of money before he fucked up his skin. Keanu's already rolling in it, but his next several roles are still mostly going to be white guys.

    It's like people who eat to fill a psychological and emotional void. You can hand them all the food in the world and it won't fix anything. So the question should be, what's wrong with folks like Bey upstairs?

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  33. PoC can't be "united" if income disparity isn't decreased because they won't have equal opportunities.

    No shit. You're still not listening.

    The goal is unity. Instead of complaining and pointing out problems barring unity, list actual solutions - not broad ones - and then talk about what you're doing to help achieve the goal. Because ultimately, that's what discussions like these come down to, which leads to another issue I intend to address in another post.

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  34. Yes, but if you read Asian American bloggers, you'll notice that they want to see themselves represented right here in the country where they've lived all to most of their lives. They don't just want to see Asians, but Asian Americans who dress, sound, and act just the way they do.

    I'm not downplaying Asian American discrimination in the US. But part of the reason blacks/hispanics have increased visibility is because we are a FAR larger minority.

    Asian Americans total are only 2% of the population I think? Blacks and Hispanics together make up almost 20-22% of the population here in America.

    They don't have population demographics in their favor. But they still have a niche they could exploit if they ever chose.

    Because that's a common complaint amongst most POC living in America - they don't all have a global view like you and even I do.

    Well that's just too damn bad. I'm sorry. People need to realize we don't exist in a vacuum. Maybe before the internet we could afford to be ignorant of what was going on in the rest of the world but PoC today have no excuse.

    And I agree with you here, PoC being blindsided about world issues is annoying.

    America is a part of the world and our struggles are connected to larger global problems due to our power and influence. And even though blacks and Hispanics are the largest minority we still live in the most powerful country in the world and we have certain privileges that we need to start using to our advantage.

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  35. @randompasserby:

    What's more depressing is that despite her actions, she has so many fans; what does that say about the state of the black community?

    My friend calls Beyonce the "hoodrat's hero." I'm going to let you decipher your own meaning to that statement.

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  36. @ Amaya
    My friend calls Beyonce the "hoodrat's hero." I'm going to let you decipher your own meaning to that statement.

    You don't see any classism in that at all?

    Wow...I'm stunned.

    And no one here thinks there's any element of class distinction to this whole skin bleaching issue?

    But it's okay to make fun of people in the ghetto who look up to Beyonce. It's not as if their input to our community is of any import whatsoever.

    Right, miss me with that.

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  37. Asian Americans total are only 2% of the population I think?

    There's actually way more than that, but one has to think...WP are a global minority and yet their visibility knows no bounds. So I feel that's one of those reasons we have to rethink.

    Well that's just too damn bad. I'm sorry. People need to realize we don't exist in a vacuum. Maybe before the internet we could afford to be ignorant of what was going on in the rest of the world but PoC today have no excuse.

    ...America is a part of the world and our struggles are connected to larger global problems due to our power and influence. And even though blacks and Hispanics are the largest minority we still live in the most powerful country in the world and we have certain privileges that we need to start using to our advantage.


    See, this is "Narrative-speak"; this global, bigger-picture attitude right here is my language. While I feel that American POC are well within their rights to live where they want and identify however they choose, they cannot ignore the big picture.

    Bey, for example, is ignoring the big picture. Whether it's more fame or more money or acceptance she's seeking, she's seriously fucked up. She's thinking strictly about herself at this point, and POC living in the West really don't have that luxury.

    Bey is the classic example of why I normally don't support these uber-famous, going-on-world-tours, worth-hundreds-of-millions type of POC. With their money and combined fame and influence, they could've built their own damn Hollywood, catering not just to the millions of POC here, but the billions which live abroad. Talk about a lucrative venture but noooo...no, no they're too busy bleaching while blonding and buying "ice". They're getting into bullshit celebrity feuds, and living in mansions the size of football fields. Such waste.

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  38. There's actually way more than that,

    Whatever the number is my point is that blacks and Hispanics combined outnumber them. At least in America that probably has something to do with their decreased visibility in entertainment here in comparison to Black/Hispanics.

    And in Rain's case JYP was the one masterminding that American crossover thing. An ambitious buinesss venture, that unfortunately failed. Just like Timbaland's Utada revamp failed.

    At least he didn't ruin Rain's career like he did WonderGirl's in Korea. They were on top until they tried to make it over here. In the interim another Korean girl group took their spot.

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  39. Bey is the classic example of why I normally don't support these uber-famous, going-on-world-tours, worth-hundreds-of-millions type of POC. With their money and combined fame and influence, they could've built their own damn Hollywood, catering not just to the millions of POC here, but the billions which live abroad. Talk about a lucrative venture but noooo...no, no they're too busy bleaching while blonding and buying "ice". They're getting into bullshit celebrity feuds, and living in mansions the size of football fields. Such waste.

    The excesses of capitalism. *shrug*

    "Money, Power, Respect"-Lil Kim & Junior Mafia

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  40. @Student & K.

    For what it's worth. I just wanted to say I appreciated the discussion and the exchange.

    I mean that. I think you've both raised some excellent points and it was really making me think. So I thank you both for that.

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  41. @Student,

    Whether I see classism or not isn't the point. I really don't care. I have far more important things to worry about something that has gone on and on and on for decades. Very little has changed in regards to how PoC rank themselves in terms of how light their skin is. It's pervasive and systemic.

    My concern, as I said earlier, is how my niece will perceive herself as Beyonce gets lighter and lighter. But her parents and I are already fostering a strong sense of self-worth and appreciation of her own dark-skinned beauty.

    But it's okay to make fun of people in the ghetto who look up to Beyonce. It's not as if their input to our community is of any import whatsoever.

    Did you hear me make fun of people in the ghetto? Did you? Quote me, then. Go back and find a direct comment of mine where I do that. Get off your soapbox and make sure you read every word of what I say before you judge me on it.

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  42. @ Amaya
    I never said you, as in "Amaya stop making fun of people in the ghetto.", did.

    I never said I was judging you either. I noticed that such statements go unremarked upon and it bothered me.

    This perception even in progressive intellectual circles like this one, that poor PoC are to be ridiculed/pitied is...weird.

    When White people take that attitude toward PoC as a group we call it what it is: racism.

    I mean, I'm assuming you're friends aren't white but on principle wouldn't you have found something wrong with them calling Beyonce "Hoodrat's Hero"?

    That remark would have a different meaning then wouldn't it?

    Correct me, if I'm wrong.

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  43. Whether I see classism or not isn't the point. I really don't care. I have far more important things to worry about something that has gone on and on and on for decades. Very little has changed in regards to how PoC rank themselves in terms of how light their skin is. It's pervasive and systemic.

    Right, and maybe the system we're apart of is what's wrong. If the problem is "systemic" as you said.

    You may not care because you're in a position of economic privilege but if PoC are serious about "Unity" then that's a counterintuitive attitude to take.

    And just because it's "always gone on" that doesn't mean it has to. We have the power to change it.

    There should be no reason why PoC feel the need to bleach themselves for social (or perceived) advancement in countries where we're the majority of the population and self governed. It doesn't make sense.

    The majority of us, around the world, especially the darker skinned are not leading the world in Wealth, at the moment. The one thing we all have in common as a world group, besides racism, is poverty. So this dismissive attitude towards the poor in PoC circles is....disturbing to me.

    It makes me feel like PoC empowerment is a "speshul" club for economically privileged members of developed countries. No third worlders, yardies, hoodrats allowed.

    Cause you know, us American PoCs We balla.

    And we don't fuck with po folks cause they stavin and shit that ain't balla.

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  44. Talk about turning a blind eye to privilege.

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  45. Holy crap I thought that was Britney Spears for a second. Smh. Everything about Beyonce lately has me disliking her.

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  46. I just read this whole post...so Zoe Saldana is light-skinned? I know many (black) people who would consider her relatively dark (or at least not light). The whole Zoe getting certain privileges because she's light is confusing in that regard. Every day I'm seeing how relative "light skin" and "dark skin" is among the black community. It's very interesting and very telling...not necessarily in good ways.

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  47. so Zoe Saldana is light-skinned? I know many (black) people who would consider her relatively dark (or at least not light).

    I see her as fairly dark, but I guess it depends on the lighting. She vacillates.

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  48. Holy crap I thought that was Britney Spears for a second.

    The picture on the left is absolutely stunning. The Britney/Shakira/Avrial-looking thing on the right, however, is so tacky.

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  49. I think in most circles zoe would be considered medium dark. It is relative to how people see themselves, but most of my friends and family whether white or black wouldn't consider her that light. I mean she isn't wesley snipes dark but she's isn't terrence howard either. She's in the middle. I thinik zoe gets what I call" light skin privledge"in terms of how she is viewed now because she's a rising star and undeniably beautiful . I've seen this with a few black actresses and models. once mainstream media deems them attractive people will debate their skin tone and often question whether they are fully black or black at all. Especially when black women have straighter hair,in my opinion then people see them a bit differently. As for beyonce, something has seemed off with her for a while. As for colorism as a whole, I do know someone from south america who told me that in certain places you wont even be considered for a job if you aren't light with certain features. So in that case it does tie into money and class. But as a whole I think its much more complex. In my opinion during slavery treating lighter skinned slaves one way was a great divide and concur. It kept people from banning together an over throwing those in power. That's very telling because I think it still rings true today. If people of color(all people of color) are busy oppressing eachother we do the work for the whites in power. They sit back and watch us destroy one another and step on eachother knowing full well if we band together we would have much more power.im not saying it would be simple but poc out number whites and have a lot to contribute. We could be powerful united.my friend once said that she bet if every poc athlete,musician,singer and actor up and quit working for the powers that be, hollywood would be crippled. Sometimes I think that's true and people don't realize the power they hold.

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    1. It is SO interesting that you bring up the fact that popularity among Blacks in hollywood brings up suspicion in terms of ethnicity. I recently saw a photoshoot for Latina magizine where all the Latina actresses were in the spread. Zoe and I think Lala Vasquez were the only Black latinas in the spread. There has been much pressure for Zoe to say she is latina now. I think this Latina side has something to do with her degree of success, even though she will always be black to me. I just think its interesting how the latino community all of a sudden wants to claim her as their own. Where was all the love from the latino community when she was just a regular black girl in Drumline?? I haven't heard her "rep" either side though

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  50. If people of color(all people of color) are busy oppressing eachother we do the work for the whites in power. They sit back and watch us destroy one another and step on eachother knowing full well if we band together we would have much more power.im not saying it would be simple but poc out number whites and have a lot to contribute. We could be powerful united.my friend once said that she bet if every poc athlete,musician,singer and actor up and quit working for the powers that be, hollywood would be crippled. Sometimes I think that's true and people don't realize the power they hold.

    Hell, prisoners in Georgia proved that theory...and yet here we are.

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