Thursday, July 07, 2005

interracial relationships

while the fact that my brother's recent revelations have definitely been on my mind, the issue of interracial relationships is one i've put alot of thought into for a while. why? because as a black woman i can't help but see the pattern of how rich black guys end up marrying white women. however, as dex has pointed out to me, this phenomenon isn't nearly as prevalent as i led myself to believe. in fact, there are many affluent black men who marry black women.

that is, unless of course that guy is a hollywood actor.

and that's what had me thinking about it today.

have you ever noticed that when interracial romance of black/white is taking place in a movie, the two people aren't depicted to be as affectionate as when both people are white? i notice it all of the time. what's worse, if there is an interracial relationship, nine times out of ten the guy is black and the female is white. why is that worse? well, have you noticed how many relationships between two loving black people are depicted on television or the movies? for that matter, do you see many black women in fulfilling relationships being depicted on television or the movies? if not for the show soul food, i'd almost believe black folk didn't know how to get along with each other. the problem i have isn't with the interracial relationships, but the implication that black men and women can't sustain loving and fulfilling relationships with each other, thereby making it a necessity for black men to seek other women out as lifemates. there simply isn't enough black on black love shown on tv or in the movies to disprove this, unfortunately.

and so if black women can't get along with black men, where does that leave us? well, according to hollywood, it basically leaves us alone and bitter, bitching out every black man who steps into our paths. wait...that also leaves us as scantily clad freaks who don't mind shaking our tits and asses just so we can be pawed in a music video by some rap artist who sticks a credit card up our cracks.

i was watching a movie last night where robert deniro was romantically involved with angela bassett. at the end, where i would normally see a kiss between the couple who were reunited after being apart, i instead saw a meek hug and then them walk off arm in arm.

i guess i should be grateful a black woman got any love at all. there has been a more recent trend of black women with white men in movies, but even then, i think there's a conscious effort to stick with the "safe" black women. thandie newton is one of those black women who you have to place in a certain light just to see the melanin in her skin. she could pass for white with a really nice tan if she tried. she's the black woman most likely paired with white men if a romance is involved. halle berry is another. angela bassett was in two movies with interracial relationships with white men, the most recent one being the score from 2001. frankly i was shocked because there is no way you can look at angela and see anything but her african features and coffee brown skin. that's not "safe" at all. however, that kind of situation is very rare. in these instances, it seems like the black woman is appealing only if her african features are subdued to the point of being eliminated.

meanwhile, the trend of black men with white women has been going on for way longer than that. also, the black guy doesn't have to be so fair-skinned that he won't be a threat to the people watching. in fact, most of the guys tend to be dark-skinned, as if to say that their african features is part of the appeal for the white women who choose them. on e.r., both of the brothas from the show had distinctive african features. both were successful doctors. both ended up dating women who weren't black.

the black guy on scrubs falls in love and marries a hispanic woman. the black male doctor on grey's anatomy is involved with an asian woman while the black female doctor is depicted as yet another bitter and emotionally distant black woman who can't seem to get a man, let alone keep one. kevin hill had a black lawyer who was basically dating everything under the sun. i can't count him because it was obvious the producers had no intention of him ever settling down.

if there was more black on black love being shown on tv and in the movies (but especially television), i wouldn't be concerned with interracial relationships on television and beyond at all because then the message was that love really IS color-blind.

as it is, the message right now is that black women and men aren't compatible and because the media has influence, i wonder if that has contributed to interracial relationships established under the assumption that black on black love is impossible unless it's just fucking. i wonder if this is why black women aren't seen as appealing by men as women of other ethnicities are.