by Omar Khilaed
DENEEN L. BROWN (pictured) writes recently in the establishment flagship Washington Post that black women should be encouraged to date and marry non-black men — but black activists are outraged. “It’s patronizing; it’s demeaning; and it can only lead to the decline and eventual disappearance of everything we love, and ultimately the end of ourselves,” according to one observer at the black-oriented African Generations. “Black women are our ultimate treasure. Every future member of our people must come from them. What is it that the Post is actually trying to do?”
The Washington Post — which is owned by the Meyer-Graham family with roots in the Middle East, not Africa — writes ‘So many black women are single… because they are stuck in the groove of a one-track song: sitting alone, waiting for that one “good” black man to come along and sweep them off their feet… Waiting. Talking to girlfriends. Waiting. Going out alone. Waiting. Going to work. Waiting. Waiting for a “good” black man, with the same education level to marry them…. Single black women with college degrees outnumber single black men with college degrees almost 3 to 1 in major urban areas such as Washington, according to a 2008 population survey by the U.S. Census Bureau. Given those numbers, any economist would advise them to start looking elsewhere. It’s Econ 101 for the single, educated black woman. “Black women are in market failure,” says writer Karyn Langhorne Folan. “The solution is to find a new market for your commodity. And in this case, we are the commodity and the new market is men of other races.”’
Most observers contacted by this reporter see the Brown article as advocacy, not reportage.
A commenter who was censored from the Post‘s message board stated “If that isn’t a blatant call for the reduction of African-American numbers and the fracturing of the African community in the United States, I don’t know what is.”
One Black woman who admitted that she eventually chose to date outside her race admits it was a decision fraught with bad feelings — and worries about what will happen to her people: “Black women have been unwaveringly faithful to the idea of creating and preserving black families from the beginning of time — only to see black man after black man parade white woman after Asian woman after Hispanic woman on their arms — particularly prominent black men. It’s almost epidemic among them: anything but a black woman, and it is being mirrored among the general population of black men. Sad, very sad.”
A black physician feels that the Post — and the book they tout in the article — damage the integrity of the black community and families: “It is really a shame that a Harvard educated woman chose such a bad solution to a problem. It is a classic sign of self hate. The Black family has been under assault… The continued rebuilding of the Black family has to remain a priority. Other ethnic groups do this and we as African Americans whine about it. This book sends the wrong message to our children. How degrading this is! No other race of women are out touting relationships with men outside of their race…. As a single black male physician, I plan to marry a successful black woman and have successful black children. It will be a model to continue to show the world that you can be successful and not abandon your race.”
More from the Post article: ‘Tyler Perry cast a Latin man as the great love interest of black actress Taraji P. Henson in his recent movie, “I Can Do Bad All by Myself”; in “The Princess and the Frog” featuring Disney’s first black princess, the prince’s indeterminate racial origins inspired commentary; and there was the 2006 movie “Something New,” in which characters played by Simon Baker, who is white, and Sanaa Lathan, who is black, fall in love…. “Consider your options,” she says. Expand your horizons. Stop listening to your girlfriends. Forget about the brothers calling you a sellout.”‘
The online black nationalist newspaper African Generations distrusts the Post‘s motives, stating of the piece: “Stay aware, black man and woman, those people are trying to destroy black America…. Stay with your own and God will continue to do the rest. Don’t fall for their tricks. Trust in your creator. Love yourself; love your people.”
A Web site devoted to what they call the ‘African diaspora‘ also deplores the message being promoted at the Post, and offers an alternative:
‘In almost all of the debates focusing on the difficulties that black men and women in America have finding each other; choosing to date different cultures is ultimately the proposed solution to the perceived shortage of desirable dating prospects in our community. By different cultures, the authors and participants of these debates are almost always referring to interracial dating. Whether it be Caucasians, Hispanics/Latinos, or Asians; the implication is that black people can not find differences of beliefs and experience among our own. Nothing could be further from the truth! It is not necessary to go outside of the race to explore different cultures and attitudes towards dating, family, and male-female relations. Black people are literally all over the world. Occupying over 40 different countries in Africa alone, as well as countries in Europe, the Caribbean, South America, and Canada. Each country has its own unique culture, beliefs, and value system.
‘For those African American women who are frustrated with their current dating/marriage choices, and who want to explore other options, the more practical and beneficial solution would be to date black men and women from other countries. These relationships, which I’ve named “African Diasporan Relationships,” allow blacks to explore different foods, listen to different music, and to visit other countries. The potential and promise of African Diasporan relationships is that they create opportunities for black people to broaden their knowledge and experience of different cultures while simultaneously strengthening the bonds of black communities and families.’
One question that has not been raised publicly is why the billionaire owners of the Washington Post are taking this controversial position.