The ease with which this white man navigated the public sphere was simply amazing and I wanted that. No matter how I modified my company, as a conscious black woman, I knew I was different and could not shake that suspicion of being exoticized by white men; I could never fully trust these relationships were real because at the end of the day I was still black.
I was not raised a sheltered, “white washed” black woman, and so the permanence of being black, with all its burdens, was always more important to me than temporary ease of access – but that privilege afforded by my complexion was not so easy to ignore.
The feelings I experienced that fateful night at the bar, and admittedly many times thereafter, now evoke the wise words of Malcolm X: “If you're not careful, the newspapers will have you hating the people who are being oppressed, and loving the people who are doing the oppressing.” Unpacking privilege and sorting through the complexities of racial and sexual politics as a bi-racial woman in white America can be a high task.
He is simultaneously invisible and ever present in the minds and lives of white America. Debased, filthy and unworthy, black men, we are told, are sexual deviants incapable of either desiring or maintaining healthy, meaningful relationships.
She blogs about sex(uality), intersectionality and invisibility every other week. Tweet with her at @Iam Bea Hinton and @filthyfreedom.
Like us on I first came across your writing in your article on being a biracial child of an absent white father/black woman and was curious to know more about you.
I choose to internalize their experiences of undervaluation, passed over promotions and emasculation.
I choose to carry the burden of [dating] black men, and I choose it often; 90% of the men I’ve dated are black.
We stood there gazing at one another, he obviously embarrassed, pondering the same silent question; should I say something or just take this as a loss and walk back to the car?