The views and opinions expressed in this post solely belong, to Goodie Proctor
I’m not a Beyoncé Stan, fan, Bey-Hiver, or occult member…..
I could have cared less about her coming out with yet another lack luster ass album. My world did not stop on Saturday when her HBO special premiered, nor did I give much of any fucks or forethought about it. The only thing I truly got into my feeling about was the fact that Prince ass chose the wrong weekend to die….because I knew that once Beyoncé did dropped her disrespectful ass album, the world would forget about Prince just like I forget about my bills during income tax season….
Let’s be real….The tea that Beyoncé dropped this weekend was old and too frequent for me to be having to use air quote around “ALLEGEDLY”. Word on the curb is that Jay has been tipping out and putting his tip into many women throughout the years, and for whatever reason Beyoncé has chosen to stay with him. Furthermore, I ask why is this information being presented to the court of public opinion now? Correct me if I’m wrong but didn’t the whole elevator incident happen damn near a year and some change ago? I feel like in order for this information to TRULY be substantial then maybe the album and its context should have been presented to the court in a timelier manner. However, never the less on Saturday night all basic bitch frequencies, dials, Wi-Fi cards, and cable boxes were tuned into witness Beyoncé’s visual album, which premiered on HBO.
As the world paused, I braced myself for an upward battle of will and twitter intimidation. As I witnessed mere hours after its premiere, the Bey-Hive being unleashed upon the world and destroying poor unsuspecting yet unconfirmed side chicks such as Rita Ora, and Racheal Roy.
Now, I like to be…”subjective” with my shade, and descriptive in my discrepancies. So even though I’m not a Stan I did, however, take the time out on Sunday to view her HBO special just so I could have fully loaded ammo to be able to talk shit.
I’m not going to lie…there was some cute moments. The beginning of it was a bit boring, and we all know Beyoncé country ass seems like she’s not smart enough to write a MLA cited college essay LET ALONE come up with that poem she was sprouting. However, what I did take solace in and brought a slight glow to my petty ass soul was her the FINALLY….SUBLIMINALLY admittance, or more or less, acknowledgment that Jay-z cheated on her and THUS SUBSEQUENTLY ADMITTING what I’ve ALWAYS KNOW!!!!!! That even though she may be one of the baddest bitches in the game … Beyoncé suffers from W.A.P.P Syndrome. That’s “weak ass poon poon” Syndrome to those of you who are unfamiliar.
I’ve long suspected that Beyoncé Kryptonite lied in the fact that she has been cursed with trash pounani and her walls are about as loose as jello, from all that dancing and gyrating.
After coming to that final realization my attention fluttered towards conversations that I sow people having on social media about Beyoncé being the new CEO of the feminist movement.
For those of you who do not know the feminist movement was started back in 1848 and has come in three waves (thus far). The first wave primarily focused on women’s right to vote, and general equality. The second wave, which started in the 1960’s, broadened the debate on women’s rights to include sexuality, family, reproductive rights, domestic violence, and workplace issues. Currently, we live in the third wave of the Feminist movement, which focuses on queer and non-white women. Feminist’s goals focus on ideas like queer theory and abolishing gender role expectations and stereotypes.
Critics have been praising the visual album as “a Revolutionary Work of Black Feminism”. Huh? Bish where????
Newsflash to Bey-Hiver and clit riders masquerading as so-called critics….Beyoncé is not the first women to be cheated on, then sit down, and have someone else write a whole album about it!!! Get real…she is not the face of the feminist movement by telling an age-old truth that MEN CHEAT!! Well, people cheat, but men kind of suck at it so we primarily hold the social title.
My main issue with this whole lemonade tirade is that I feel like it’s not genuine. Beyoncé has NEVER been the type of women to parade her life out and across the media for the masses. Remember this is the women who at one point had the world believing she was fake carrying a baby when in all she had to do was put out a picture of her baby bump. So when I see a visual album like lemonade being peddled out to the masses the first thing I think of is….Is this honestly true, or is this just another cleverly thought out write to the script, and a push to develop her “character” further? I feel like she used his act of indiscretion as a badge of honor. Almost like saying “Hey occult…I mean….Hive! Guess what ya’ll!! Jay cheated one me! Now I have new material to sing about. Also, since my acting skills are that of a kindergartener in a Christmas production playing a tree, and I refuse to hire an acting coach, I’m going to put out an hour long special where I can showcase my skills so you can give me praise and hype up my ego. ” and almost like flies to shit people fell for this hook line and sinker. Let’s repeat….Beyoncé is not the first women in the world to be cheated on!!!! Hell!!! Keisha Cole ass out here getting cheated on all the damn time!!!!
I mean I am sure if we try hard enough we can find a negro spiritual about some poor slave women’s husband who has been cheating on her with the masters wife Becky “with the good hair”(you know they always leave you for a white girl….) .
I think the question that women everywhere need to ask themselves is this who you want to be your commander and Chief of the feminist movement. Do you truly want to take queues from a woman who stayed with a man who cheated on her? Forgiveness is one thing, but knowing your worth is something very different. As the feminist Lauren hill once said “Baby Girl…Respect is just the Minimum.,” what type does the example of Beyoncé staying say to young women everywhere? Especially giving her ability to leave. Unlike the average women who has to think twice about leaving because of breaking a lease, Sally Mae payments, or being on a dude’s family plan with Verizon, Beyoncé has the means and monetary funds to start over. I guess my question is….How does her staying with Jay empower and give hope to those women out there who have gone through the same thing?
Child….now that I think about it. What does Beyoncé momma think about all this? Didn’t Tina Knowles get cheated on, and her heart beat’ed on by Beyoncé daddy??? Why would she even co-sign her daughter staying with a man who did the same thing she left her husband for?
Child the Carter and looking more and more like the Target version of the Kardashians….’
Now if Beyoncé wanted to a TRUE feminist what her ass should have done was instead of crying and complaining about Jay tipping out with Becky, she should have been having some affairs with motha fuckin Brain Bitch! That’s what a boss ass bitch does! You do not get mad, bitch you get EVEN. You go out here and you have yourself some affairs on him. You BEYONCE not CIARA! Or better yet why not try turning the tables on him and the current narrative and role that women have played for so long. Staying with a man that betrays your trust for lust….why? Because Beyoncé, just like most women, for whatever reason feels leaving a man who cheats on you is a failure on their imagine, spirit, and social standing. When in all actuality staying with a man who cheats makes you look weak, and displays an image of having low self-esteem and worth.
Now I’m not saying that cheating in relationships doesn’t happen, nor am I saying that if your man cheats on you then that warrants you to leave. Every relationship is different. Moreover, so is everyone’s definition of “cheating”. What I am saying is staying does not make you a feminist, or the leader of the movement in my eyes. Nor does “Lemonade” seem like anything more than a higher production of what the average artist whose catalog consists of anthems speaking on infidelity type betrayal coming from a lover.
Hell!!! Ya act like what Beyoncé did isn’t what Taylor Swift has been doing for the last ten years….singing about a no good ass cheating man, her heart being broken, and forgiveness. Which is why Taylor Swift is the PRINCESS OF R&B!!!
Let me wrap this up by saying I am critical about EVERYTHING Beyoncé does. Why? Because much like ANYTHING that comes out of the media, I don’t trust it!!! I know how the media can be used to manipulate people and how these stars spend MILLIONS to propagate and falcate their image. Beyoncé in my eyes needs to be checked from time to time. I feel like she is the Superman, to my Batman. To the outside world, and my single ass friends she seems all-powerful, celestial, and pure hearted. However, to me….that hoe all right.
Is Beyoncé a feminist? To some….however, I cannot help but not understand why people feel like this. Though I applaud her for speaking her truth, I find it hard to pay it any attention. All the she did was admit that she belongs to the same club many of us already pay dues too. Like the majority of people around the world, Beyoncé was cheated on and betrayed by someone she loved and trusted….allegedly. Let us not forget to add that in at the end, because it has not honestly been put out that Beyoncé is singing from the point of view of herself or anyone she knows. And since we know she, in the past, has not been very candid about portions of her life like many others stars have been, it’s hard to truly believe that the lemonade that she is sipping on was tastefully created by herself. i.e….Are we even sure the lemons in this drink are from her tree?
But I digress.
“I Still Know What You Did Last Summer: Pandemic, Pride, and HIV Afterlives”
Atlanta Black Pride began as a picnic.
Once upon a time in 1996, “a small group of African American lesbian and gay friends held a picnic over Labor Day weekend to celebrate their unique experience in Atlanta’s LGBT community. Each year, the group grew with others from the community and neighboring cities.” This swelling group would become the non-profit, volunteer-led 501(c)3 organization, In The Life Atlanta (ITLA). As a founding party to the International Federation of Black Prides, ITLA annually hosts upwards of 100,000 Black queer people in Atlanta, Georgia–comandeering almost every major club, the entire metro area, and, the city’s heartbeat, Piedmont park.
Atlanta Black Pride is the largest pride event dedicated to Blackqueer people in the World.
Of course, everyone who attends is not affiliated with ITLA, nor is every event held in the name of Atlanta Black Pride on Labor Day weekend engineered with the consultation or even knowledge of ITLA. However, I find it imperative to properly situate what can be considered a kind of Blackqueer Hajj into the larger, historical context of the “Black (gay) Mecca”.
As I write this, cases of COVID-19 and resultant deaths are on a relative decline in Georgia. Yesterday, September 4, 63 people died; ten less than the number who died the day before on September 3. There were 2,066 cases discovered yesterday as well, which in comparison to the 2,675 found the day before seems like progress–seems.
Either unwittingly or out of sheer moral dereliction, Blackqueer people have, nonetheless, crowded the concrete corridors of downtown Atlanta in the name of “Pride”. Fulton County, in which Atlanta resides, has the most cases of any county in Georgia with 25,540 confirmed cases to date. Footage from inside clubs packed passed capacity proliferated Black twitter. Bodies move as if welded together; the building heaves as it holds them–constricted and ecstatic. Sweat and swisher-soaked shirts find their way up over heads, tucked into jeans or draped across clavicles, couches. Tongues untied touch, mouths unmasked meet. Exhales no longer waited; they breathe each other in, eliding every edict to distance. Under these conditions, death is imminent, intimate.
In 2018, WSB-TV reported that, according to Emory University’s Center of AIDS research, HIV infections had reached “epidemic” proportions for Blacks in Atlanta, with every 1 in 51 Black people at risk of diagnosis. 42% of new HIV diagnoses in the country in the same year were among adult and adolescent Black people. Black queer men–the demographic majority of Atlanta Black Pride, I must add–make up for 37% of new diagnoses among all queer men in the United States.
One of the very few things known about COVID-19 is that it disproportionately impacts the already immunocompromised–the Elderly, the infantile, the asthmatic, the seropositive. Hence, it would seem to behoove the Blackqueer attendants of Atlanta Black Pride–who by no means nor stretch of the imagination are solely responsible for the intracommunal increase of HIV diagnoses nor by majority, themselves, seropositive–to be vigilant, not simply about their own health but about the health of their larger community. Put differently, Atlanta Black Pride 2020 seems blissfully ignorant of, not merely this current historical moment but, moreso, itself; its attendees–against the backdrop of 5,000+ deaths, 263,000 cases and counting, impending eviction crises, mass unemployment, abolitionist unrest–begin to appear almost morally bereft.
I’d be remiss if I did not mention that most of the event fliers appeal to cisheteronormative cultural appetites with well-oiled and scantily clad, light skin men/mascs who titillate the impoverished desirability politics of its viewers. Consequently, thin, conventionally desirable, cisgendered, homonormative Black men get to feel most hailed and at home. This may possibly clarify why it looks to be the case that, for Atlanta Black Pride and her benefactors, the pandemic is not to be taken seriously; to whom/what do cisgay men ever feel accountable?
On the other hand: it is, however, simply empirically untenable, outright false to assert or even suggest that Black cisgay men are the only Blackqueer folks present for Pride. Anything else would be or border erasure. This, then, raises an even more harrowing question: for whom/what is the Blackqueer responsible? If cases rise in Atlanta post-Pride, even if only within Blackqueer commons, are Blackqueer people, even partially, responsible? Who is the onus on to defend Blackqueer life or stave off Blackqueer death and dying?
Cultural historian Saidiya Hartman, in her trailblazing monograph Scenes of Subjection: Terror, Slavery, and Self-making in Nineteenth Century America, looks at the Black codes and Freedmans’ Bureau handbooks to illuminate how postbellum America incorporated recently emancipated slaves through liberal ideologies of consent, responsibility, and culpability. The “ex-”Slave demonstrated their appreciation for emancipation through self-mastery, discipline, and hard work. After 400+ years of free labor, idleness and lethargy in the Black was shamed and eschewed as “the body no longer harnessed by chains or governed by the whip was instead tethered by the weight of conscience, duty, and obligation,” writes Hartman. In a constant performance of ethical sophistication and proper conduct, Black bodies were ushered into a more modern regime of servitude in which they would perpetually genuflect to the behavioral dictates of the State and its White majority in always already foreclosed attempts at making good on the promises of manumission: national incorporation, sociopsychic recognition, juridical protection, and legal equality. To be irresponsible–meaning both without anything to be responsible for (property for instance) or to be accessed as negligent vis-a-vis what one is supposed to be responsible with (personhood and other persons)–was to be unfit for freedom.
Under these on-going conditions, the Blackqueer remains precluded from recognizably responsible behavior at least insofar as Blackqueerness yet marks the racially abject and sexually deviant imposition on and threat to the very notion of the public and every concept of the proper, good, and socially acceptable on which it relies. Stuart Hall’s Policing the Crisis, Michael Warner’s Publics and Counterpublics, and Saidiya Hartman’s Wayward Lives, Beautiful Experiments come into chorus beautifully on this point. Blackqueer responsibility is a misnomer because Blackqueer propriety is impossible. As Hartman further advised in 1997, the Blackqueer is the constitutive outside of citizen-subjectivity, or the Blackqueer is only a political subject to the extent to which it is criminally culpable. The Blackqueer capacity for responsibility, within a legico-juridical order to which it has no place or legitimate claim, is always a precondition for Blackqueer criminality.
The Blackqueer is ontologically ir/responsible: at once, made to be responsible for their own bio-political damnation and irresponsible with their ever-pending redemption. “Sin is Negro as virtue is white,” writes Frantz Fanon in Black Skin, White Masks. “All those white men in a group, guns in their hands, cannot be wrong. I am guilty. I do not know of what, but I know that I am no good.”
What might it mean to understand Blackqueerness as the refusal of the politics of the proper? What if the politic of Blackqueerness is to dispossess itself of the proper, which is to say the appropriate and the “responsible”, which is to say place and/in state? Can we look at the refusal to be withheld from each other as that dispossessory politic? Maybe getting together is the only or originary politic of the dispossessed; those dispossessed, first, of the very possibility to get together. If what poet-philosopher Fred Moten reminds us is true, if “we get together to fight,” can we see within all the fighting, the “fighting to maintain our capacity to get together”? Must we be responsible for the conditions that coproduce our constriction and our ecstasy? Whither might Blackqueer rage and release be permitted? What would it look like to shift the penologic of responsibility back on the “authors of devastation,” whose “innocence,” Baldwin tells us “constitutes the crime.”
Before the U.S. government decided to rescue Wall Street from COVID-induced collapse, it refused to democratize access to Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis while defunding the Global Fund to Fight AIDS. Blackqueer people, particularly in Atlanta, have long occupied a state of [non-]emergency, with nothing to show for it besides a well-lit stadium and a Mayor with Bottoms for a last name. Therefore, when we ask Blackqueer people to be “responsible” for their contribution to the pandemic, be held accountable for COVID’s role in community, we must first ask how “responsibility” itself is a request for a comportment that consents to the current medico-juridical paradigm that engineers Blackqueer death–both, premature and belated. Blackqueer riskiness, ethical irresponsibility, was not why HIV/AIDS became an epidemic and, in the same way, it will not be why COVID-19 never loosens its grip. A government that capitalizes off of catastrophe; that chooses profits over people; who–right before entering a $1.95 Billion deal with Pharmaceutical company Pfizer and biotechnology company BioNTech, a $2.1 billion deal with French pharmaceutical company Sanofi and British pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline–allowed the ban on evictions to expire, permitted schools to reopen, began disseminating “back to work” plans, and “phasing-out” travel restrictions: the U.S. government will always, in every instance, be responsible for the rise of coronavirus and its asymmetrical presence in Blackqueer and poor communities.
Furthermore, if to be Blackqueer is to lose the right to one’s own body or the right to own one’s body; if Blackqueer bodies are always “public texts”, as Karla Holloway might suggest, then we must take into our analysis how Blackqueerness has been written into the general political body, the hegemonic commonsense, the collective unconscious as, in itself, a biological threat, as negrophobogenic as Fanon later puts it, as sheer pathogen. This discursive-material conceptualization–Blackqueer systematic vulnerability to disease/death conterminous with disease/death as the universal sign of Blackqueerness—rebuffs performative concealment or “proper posture”. There is nothing the Blackqueer person can do to not be a figure of epidemiological scandal. The Blackqueer is the ghost of every pandemic. The Blackqueer occupies the political role of bioterrorist, in advance. Borrowing a Hartmanian locution: this is what it means to live as the afterlife of HIV.
Still there is the very real risk of acquiring (and dying by) COVID. The lives of Blackqueer folks, disproportionately immunocompromised and/as disabled, hang in the balance. Their vulnerability to death seems eclipsed–as it is already more generally–by an intracommunal propensity to play with precarity. There is no question that a dearth in political attention to the Blackqueer disabled structures Blackqueer responses (or lack thereof) to the pandemic. Yet, I want to suggest that play can also be a Blackqueer disabled response. I want to suggest that Blackqueer disabled folks attended Atlanta Black Pride, against their best self-interest and though it might not be an ethics to universalize, it is not a politic to minimize. Amidst the ongoing War on AIDS, Blackqueer lifeworlds–crowded nightclubs, dilapidated bathhouses, un/protected penetrations—become articulations of summers refusing to be stolen, bodies refusing to behave, backs going unbent. Blackqueer folks–disabled and otherwise–engage in risk irreducible to the apolitical or asinine. There is a politics present in Blackqueer folks’ refusal of the ways precarity precludes play. If we think about the war on AIDS as war on the Blackqueer disabled/immunocompromised, how might Blackqueer disability always entail the negotiations of play and precarity; how might those negotiations proliferate to unforeseen, counterintuitive and counterproductive ends? A politics of Blackqueer commons might also look like where touch persisted, when pleasure insisted under the pressure of pandemic and antiBlack public, especially as the difference loses all distinction, especially since “we have nothing to lose but our chains.”
Twitter Reacts to BlackLoveDoc’s Shortage of Dark Skinned Women in Promotional Video
#BlackLoveDoc returns to OWN on September 5th, and they’re being dragged through the Twitterverse because of their promotional video, which dark-skinned women are largely unaccounted for.
If you’re unfamiliar with what #BlackLoveDoc is, it’s a docuseries where a collection of black couples—queer and hetero—have discussions about love on camera.
The promotional video sparked a debate about colorism. One Twitter user replied, “When I say that ‘Black love’ is nothing more than a lie this is what I mean. The women had to pass a paper bag test to even get the so-called ‘Black love.’ This is why I’m [a] firm believer in Black women opening their options and dating the right person for them regardless of race.”
Whoever runs #BlackLoveDoc’s Twitter account, probably Gayle King, replied: “Hey Ella! We agree. This is why we show Black men and women of all shades in loving relationships – we even show them in relationships with someone who isn’t Black Flushed face And some folks are mad. It sucks. But we [still] show US being loved. Because that’s what matters.”
Bad response to being called out for colorism. Surely a billionaire like Oprah can afford better social media editors and public relations training for her staff.
Enjoy these tweets of #BlackLoveDoc’s promo getting dragged:
Cori Bush Snatches The Missouri Primary From 19-year Incumbent William Lacy Clay
A little positive political news is coming our way. Cori Bush, who’s running for Congress in Missouri has snatched the primary vote from Lacy Clay, who has held the seat for 19 years. For the past 50 years, the Clay family has held the seat. Today, Cori ends that streak.
Of importance is that Cori is not only a Black woman, but one of the better-known organizers for Black Lives Matter. The Congressional Black Caucus was very vocal about their disapproval of her “radical” stances, but it seems their clucking has meant absolutely nothing to the final result. She punctuated her victory with a simple tweet:
Boom! Haha. Ya girl has sass. I’ll remind you all that she was one of those protesting for our lives at Ferguson and has lead her public life with a raised fist ever since.