Friday, July 31, 2009

Light Skin or Dark Skin!- By: DANA


Gentlemen, ask yourselves this question: If there are two girls, they both have the same type of beauty: cute face, shape, and everything. Which one would you approach? However, the only difference between these two gorgeous young ladies is one is dark skinned and the other is light skinned. Ladies, the same question goes for you.

Fall semester 2007, my friends, Keisha, Monica and I gave a survey to at least 15 PVAMU male students by asking them this same question. 75 percent chose light-skinned, 20 percent chose dark-skinned, and five percent chose both.

The reason for this survey was that Keisha, a dark-skinned female, attempted to prove a point to Monica and me. She stated that male students on our campus tend to ignore the dark-skinned females. Monica and I had never encountered this situation before or even noticed it for this matter. After our research, we came to the conclusion that she was right.






Monica would be considered a light-skinned female; however growing up, her family encouraged her to believe dark-skinned women were prettier than light-skinned women. She was often ridiculed for being lighter than most of her family members.

I, myself, could be considered in between dark and light-skinned. I had never been exposed to the criticism of the color of my skin. Personally, my battle was with another African-American issue: which was good-hair versus bad-hair.

The media could be a huge influence on how we perceive certain images, regarding light-skinned and dark-skinned women. Rapper Young Berg, best known for his recent hit "Give you the business," was recently reported on an XM radio interview as referring to dark-skinned woman as "dark butts." He stated that deep, brown skin tone women are not dateable for him because they just do not look good enough. According to him the women he dates must pass a "pool test," meaning the woman must look just as good as she did before she stepped into the pool and her hair should not be "nappy" when stepping out of the pool. He is also reported to say that he wanted nobody darker than him. Furthermore, the next day, after the interview, Young Berg made a public apology to all dark-skin women, claiming that he was sincerely remorseful. Also, he informed the public that his mother is a dark-skinned female.

However, rappers and their influence should not get all of the blame, due to the fact that L'Oreal cosmetics shot an ad with Beyonce. They attempted to darken her skin in the ad for Essence magazine, but lightened it in the ads for the mainstream magazine. Is it possible that L'Oreal darkened the ad for Essence magazine?

The originality of the entire issue within our African-American community, came from the William Lynch speech and letter. A slave owner of the West Indies declared that he discovered the "secret" to controlling enslaved Africans. This theory was an address delivered by Willie Lynch in Virginia 1712 regarding control of slaves within the colony. The letter informs other slave masters how to control slaves mentally by setting them against one another.

"I guarantee everyone of you that if installed correctly it will control the slaves for at least 300 years...

I use fear, distrust, and envy for control purposes. These methods have worked on my modest plantation in the West Indies, and it will work throughout the South... Take this simple little test of differences and think about them. On the top of my list is "Age", but it is there because it only starts with an "A"; the second is "Color" or shade; there is intelligence, size, sex, size of plantations, attitude of owners, whether the slaves live in the valley, on a hill, East, West, North, South, have fine or coarse hair, or is tall or short...

I shall assure you that distrust is stronger than trust, and envy is stronger than adulation, respect, or admiration. The black slave, after receiving this indoctrination, shall carry on and will become self refueling and self generating for hundreds of years, maybe thousands...you must use the dark skinned slaves versus the light skinned slaves, and the light skinned slaves versus the dark skinned slaves," said Lynch.

Willie Lynch discovered that when the slaves worked together, they were very productive and successful, possibly more than other races. Consequently, he figured out a way to keep the slaves ignorant and mentally dysfunctional.

Today, an issue that black people probably struggle with is attempting to conceive "pretty light skinned or light-brown skinned babies." As a people, we should strive to improve our personal perceptions of our race. So that when we do have children, we can teach them to love themselves and embrace the race they originated from.

14 comments:

  1. o.o this fight is crazy lmao. im jkn

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  2. i totally agree in my school though we are like idgaf if ur light or dark just don't be a mean bitch, lmfao, yea i know

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  3. at mii skool light skinn gurls with curly hair are faverd an i got told when i straitend mii hair i look less good

    indago inhansed
    i was in tie me down by new boys (the one with the pink hair)listin to my songs ily

    ReplyDelete
  4. dark skinned girls are beautiful!
    the blacker the berry the sweeter the juice

    ReplyDelete
  5. I am dark brown and somtimes this issue gets on my nerves all that matters is if you look good to the person if you don't get over it theirs some one out their who will want you Ps. I made more snce than yall an Im 12 plus im half african, black and indian an I look good no matter what nobody says

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  6. I am glad you are addressing this subject and keeping it in the context of the psychological effects. Most people discuss it without the role of this system of White supremacy in ruining our aesthetic development or the development of our standards of beauty/handsomeness.

    Because the media and this society values women by appearance more than men, this is definitely an issue that affects the sistas more than the brothas, but it also effected me growing up. I am a dark skinned male who originally grew up brainwashed and even when I finally broke out of the seeing beauty based on the standards set by the cartoon images I was raised with, girls of all complexions tended to be ashamed to be with me in public but would hide to be with me. A lot of sistas wanted lighter skinned men for long term relationships but saw me as just someone to hide and sleep with, which didn't work for me because I was not the type to sleep around. They wanted their kids to have hair and skin more like White people.

    I hope together we can come up with strategies to alleviate these problems. I did a search on the internet for dark skinned women also and had similar trouble finding pictures that fit this category. This is sad considering the breathtaking natural beauty of some of the pure black women of Africa, the Caribbean Islands, and other places I have seen which are never represented. I hope others out there can help to mend this problem for the future generations.

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  7. Editing my last comment. Too many typos.

    I am glad you are addressing this subject in the context of the psychological effects. Most people don't discuss the role of this White supremact system in ruining our aesthetic development or the development of our standards of beauty/handsomeness.

    Because the media and this society values women by appearance more than men, this is definitely an issue that affects the sistas more than the brothas, but it also effected me growing up. I am a dark skinned male who originally grew up brainwashed and even when I finally broke out of the seeing beauty based on the standards set by the cartoon images I was raised with, girls of all complexions tended to be ashamed to be with me in public but would hide to be with me. A lot of sistas wanted lighter skinned men for long term relationships but saw me as just someone to hide and sleep with, which didn't work for me because I was not the type to sleep around. They wanted their kids to have hair and skin more like White people.

    I hope together we can come up with strategies to alleviate these problems. I did a search on the internet for dark skinned women also and had similar trouble finding pictures that fit this category. This is sad considering the breathtaking natural beauty of some of the pure black women of Africa, the Caribbean Islands, and other places I have seen which are never represented. I hope others out there can help to mend this problem for the future generations.

    ReplyDelete
  8. I am a light skinned girl and I completely agree this issue is bad. I believe this issue is strongly about race because in this world it seems like the whites always have it better. And at my school most of the light-skinned students are mixed (including myself). I've had a conversation like this with my two friends(dark-skinned girls). I guess its because they think light-skinned have it better in life. Because in certain media dark-skin is usually associated ghetto and being light-skinned meant sophisticated which is a bunch of crap. I know many dark-skinned students at school and they are the smartest students.And I think its also a hair thing,

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  9. when i was growing up i was always disliked becuz i grew up in the south and every body is usually darker and i light skinned so girls really dint like me and alot of gus did. but i just think everybodys beuatiful not matter what skin shade :)

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  10. Ima light skinned girl with long pretty hair my dad is white and latina n my mom is mixed with white n black so I have the good long silky hair and I am a model and all my other freinds are dark skinned with long good weaves but I cudd neva figure out why whn we go places all the men try to tlk to me rather dhen my friends...... but now I see why but I do nt think that its tru dark skinned women are very beautiful I think every women is equal! All women are beautiful no matter what thier skin tone is!

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  11. I'm light skinned with waist length hair because I'm latina and black but I have a lot of dark skin friends but when we go places I get hit on and asked why you hanging with them and in my eyes they are very pretty none of them wear weaves and its relaxed and pretty long if you ask me I never had this problem until highschool and I just lost a friend cause she thought I said I was better than her when I didn't.When I was younger I thought darker skin was good skin that's why I love summer so I can get a tan my mom always said dark is good but I hats that people think any complexion is better We as black people are beautiful and need to stick together as one!

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