This week on Beyoncé’s web, rapper Erica Banks of “Buss It” problem fame is trending as a result of she shared a listing of conditions buddies have to accompany her to the membership. She shared this checklist on her Instagram Tales together with her shut buddies, however a not-so-close good friend leaked the video.
“If a b—h ain’t a sure kind of look, if she don’t look how I would like her to look, bodily, I don’t need her to come back,” Banks stated within the video. “As a result of the look of all the things is so necessary to me. Like, if she ain’t thick sufficient? Nope. Hair not did adequate? Nope. Can’t costume? Nope. Skinny? Nope.”
As you’ll be able to think about, the principle a part of her checklist that’s ruffling many individuals’s feathers is the physique shaming, contemplating she herself has supposedly had work completed to her physique.
Banks continued saying in her tales, “I simply desire a sure kind of look. She may very well be the sweetest lady I ever met in my life, but when she don’t look the half, I don’t need her to come back,” she stated. “That’s simply not the vibe I’m on. Now she will be able to come to the cookout, she will be able to come to the listening celebration, however the membership? I really feel like b—hes gotta look a sure solution to come.”
After all, the rapper obtained backlash from social media customers with some referring to her as a “imply lady” and saying she was discriminating towards different ladies. Banks “saved that very same power” when she responded to the backlash.
“All people’s entitled to their very own opinion & I’ve by no means been one to persuade individuals of liking mine,” she tweeted. “My desire of who I membership with on the subject of my model has nothing to do with y’all. Y’all by no means preferred me anyway so why would I care about what y’all take into consideration something I say?”
She is true within the sense that everybody is entitled to their very own opinion, however there are nonetheless a few issues to unpack right here. The 2 issues I’ll give attention to are whether or not it is sensible to exclude our buddies based mostly on how they give the impression of being and the infamous matter of physique shaming. Let’s begin with the previous.
To not be hypocrites, we must always all be sincere and admit we’ve innate biases. We are sometimes interested in individuals who look or behave a sure means as a result of that’s how people are wired. There’s really a scientific time period for this referred to as the “similar-to-me-effect,” which is a cognitive bias that claims we are inclined to gravitate in the direction of individuals who look and act like us. This isn’t inherently a nasty factor. Nevertheless, some biases we’ve may be dangerous to others. And excluding “buddies” based mostly on their physique kind and aesthetic feels dangerous. Why? As a result of real friendships must be secure areas the place individuals can come as they’re and never be excluded or instructed they don’t meet the minimize for doing so.
To me, friendships are about embracing individuals for who they’re, creating secure areas for vulnerability, and serving to each other develop. To exclude somebody based mostly on issues you’ll be able to assist them with like hair, clothes, or make-up feels unfair, and to be frank, shallow. To bar them based mostly on one thing they could not have the ability to management–-like being skinny–-does certainly really feel discriminatory, bringing me to my second level about physique shaming.
I noticed a submit after I was scrolling via Instagram just lately a couple of girl who reworked her physique within the fitness center and went from being slim to thick. The caption honed in on the significance of not skinny shaming ladies, as a result of it may be simply as dangerous as fats shaming. Within the Black neighborhood, many people have this obsession with being “thick” and each different physique kind is usually seen as undesirable. As a slim Black lady, I couldn’t hear the top of me “needing to eat extra,” or not having sufficient booty all all through my teenage and grownup years. I heard it from Black women and men solely, relations too. I keep in mind one providing me a serum that will supposedly assist my butt develop. For a very long time, it made me really feel insufficient and like being thick was the one solution to be engaging.
When individuals make statements like those Banks took to her platform to share, they don’t take into consideration how dangerous this messaging may be to ladies battling their self-image. All physique varieties may be horny, stunning, and engaging–it’s all only a matter of private desire.
As Black ladies, we shouldn’t be perpetuating “preferences” usually formed by mass media that make different ladies really feel excluded or unattractive. Whereas it isn’t Banks’ job to care about or assist nourish the conceit of different ladies, being variety goes a good distance. Because the old-age saying goes, if you happen to don’t have something variety to say…I’m positive the remaining. Possibly preserve it to your self, sis.