Bounce queen Big Freedia's long-time DJ Rusty Lazer on the rise of twerking in Puja Patel's "Bouncing Back", a piece about bounce culture and the first all-female brass band to win New Orleans’ Street Kings competition. (via highkeygay)
Vanessa VanDyke has amazing hair. Point blank. But it’s her hair that may cause her to get expelled from school. Faith Christian Academy in Orlando told the 12-year-old that she has a week to decide if she’s going to cut her hair, straighten it, or get kicked out.
Vanessa has attended Faith Christian Academy since she was in the third grade, but the school’s s code has rules against how students can wear their hair. The handbook reads: “Hair must be a natural color and must not be a distraction,” and goes on to state examples that include, but are not limited to, mohawks, shaved designs and rat tails.
The distraction that the school is probably referring to when it speaks of Vanessa’s hair has to do with bullying and teasing.
“A distraction to one person is not a distraction to another,” said VanDyke’s mother, Sabrina Kent. “You can have a kid come in with pimples on his face. Are you going to call that a distraction?”
VanDyke said she’s had her large, natural hair all year long, but it only became an issue after the family complained about students teasing her about her hair.
“There have been bullies in the school,” said Kent. “There have been people teasing her about her hair, and it seems to me that they’re blaming her.”
“I’m depressed about leaving my friends and people that I’ve known for a while, but I’d rather have that than the principals and administrators picking on me and saying that I should change my hair,” said VanDyke.
So instead of Faith Christian Academy doing something about the bullies, they’re going to reprimand a 12-year-old because of her hair?
“I’m going to fight for my daughter,” Kent said. “If she wants her hair like that, she will keep her hair like that. There are people out there who may think that natural hair is not appropriate. She is beautiful the way she is.”
it’s hard enough for black girls to feel beautiful without those in authority sending the message that their hair is unacceptable. this story is disgusting and unfortunately not the first or last case. it’s a damn shame that every part of a black girl’s body is politicized, at all ages
I’m so proud of her mother.
I signed the petition. I called the school and left a message. I am not playing. And yall shouldn’t either. Sign it here: http://www.change.org/petitions/faith-christian-academy-confront-guilty-students-for-bullying-not-fault-victims-for-wearing-their-hair-in-its-natural-state?share_id=IYDUMdeZVj&utm_campaign=signature_receipt&utm_medium=email&utm_source=share_petition
Reposting again for the cheap seats in the back. Let’s do something!
BOOST! take 5 seconds and sign this!
signed, and re-reblogging for the petition
12 year old Vanessa VanDyke is being threatened with expulsion from Faith Christian Academy in Orlando unless she cuts her natural hair. Hair growing the way it does out of her head is considered a “distraction” by administrators. Yet another young Black girl forced to deal with the beauty politics and the politics of respectability that insist that not being White or adhering to those standards are an automatic detriment to education. Worse, she’s attended this school since 3rd grade and doesn’t want to have to leave her friends though she has been bullied by other kids for her hair. The consistent policing of Black women’s bodies starts young and continues right through college and the workplace. It is tiring and without logic beyond White supremacy, of course.
According to Local 10 in Orlando, she wore her hair like this all year. It’s a problem now because she is being bullied, and in a typical abuse culture riddled with victim blaming, the bullies are who needs to be coddled and protected, not her.
I truly hope that whomever is ignorant on that school’s staff work things out with her parents or she finds a better school, though that will mean making new friends, which is challenging in adolescence at times. My larger hope is that Eurocentric beauty standards continue to unravel and continue to be stomped out of existence.
And nothing is wrong with her wearing her hair loose. Sometimes even Black people who claim to love natural hair only love it when elaborately styled, and those styles are very nice, but not the only way to wear natural hair.
And no Whites, I don’t want to hear about “rules” and “professionalism” until you explore what White supremacy and Whiteness actually mean. And don’t even try to conflate Whites’ mohawks etc. with Black women’s natural hair in an ahistorical way. And no some Black people, I don’t want to hear about perms being more “appropriate” and any respectability politics nonsense, until you explore how you internalize White supremacist thinking. Don’t come here with that.
I wish her and her family the best in this situation.
[Chart from White & Kowalsky article in Psychology of Women Quarterly, 1994, showing that most women who kill their spouses do so out of self-defense and receive a 15-20 year sentence, whereas most men who kill their spouse do so for reasons of sexual jealousy and receive a 2-6 year sentence. Text above chart reads “Stereotype of gender differences in aggression…sustains male power.”]
New Warning: Morning-After Pill Doesn’t Work for Women Over 176 Pounds
The European manufacturer of a pill identical to Plan B says its product won’t work for women who weigh more than 176 pounds. Will American pharma companies warn women of weight limits?
The European manufacturer of an emergency contraceptive pill identical to Plan B, also known as the morning-after pill, will warn women that the drug is completely ineffective for women who weigh more than 176 pounds, and begins to lose effectiveness in women who weigh more than 165 pounds. HRA Pharma, the French manufacturer of the European drug, Norlevo, is changing its packaging information to reflect the weight limits. European pharmaceutical regulators approved the change on November 10, but it has not been previously reported.
QUEER AND PROUD » LGBTQIA* artists singing about LGBTQIA* issues and love
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How to be an ally:
- Shut up, you’re not entitled to give your opinion.
- Listen to voices of the oppressed.
- Do not derail conversations.
- Refrain from making discriminatory jokes.
- Do not expect praise/acknowledgement.
Whoopi Goldberg recently made her directorial debut at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival. Her groundbreaking documentary, “I Got Somethin’ To Tell You,” is about the life of African-American and openly lesbian stand-up comic Moms Mabley, born Loretta Mary Aiken.
Well that answers that! Can’t wait to see this.