Op/Ed By Jason Muhammad –
(Editor’s note: The reference to Dove in this editorial is regarding the company’s recent apology for an ad that misrepresented black women.)
The soap company, Dove, is the latest to fall victim to what seems to be a marketing misstep. And woke-folks have swarmed to make sure that they pay for revealing what would have normally remained hidden under hooded bed sheets.
But, let us be clear. Nothing is clean in America. Nothing.
The poison of white supremacy, and the inevitably, resulting toxin of Black inferiority, has found its way to place a stain on every field of human endeavor.
And, Dove cannot wash that away.
If we are honest, there are very few, if any, companies in America that have not benefitted from Black labor, or Black exploitation.
And if we are to be honest, societal norms allowed for this to happen, as opposed to some clandestine plot.
But, we do not like to be honest.
Honesty is difficult. And, the more that mainstream think-tanks work to make activism a fashionable fad that can quickly be phased out when the next new thing comes along, the more we prefer to be wooed by romanticized perspectives of Black Struggle.
If we are honest, we would have to admit that nothing has really changed in America when it comes to the way that Black people are viewed. We are the entertainment. We are the servants. We are the help.
And, when one of us rises out of our place to attain positions of respect and authority, we are still viewed from a lens of deficiency, and must spend a part of our time justifying our ability to perform outside of the box in which the masses of our people have been placed.
Think that over.
We must be honest, and stop acting as though America has all of a sudden turned into something that it has not been for the past 462 years. White supremacy sailed with Columbus. It was with the pilgrims on the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria. It was the captain of every slave ship.
So, if we want to see real change, not symbolic release valves for our outrage, then the change may start with boycotts and economic withdrawal, but it cannot stop there.
We must DO something for OURSELVES.
Fine, stop buying Dove.
But, then find a Black-owned soap company and support them. I agree, stop going to restaurants that discriminate. But then go to a Black-owned establishment and spend your money. Most definitely stop going to clothing stores that have security follow you around. Go to a Black-owned clothing store that sells products produced by Black-owned clothing companies.
We must stop being beggars at the foot of others, hoping that they will one day change. We have experts in every field of human endeavor. We can, and must pool our resources, and do something for ourselves, and produce what we need that truly represents our image and likeness.
Because in America, nothing is clean.
Not even the soap…
(Disclaimer: The views expressed on our opinion pages are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the position or viewpoint of the Minority Reporter.)