Sign in

Digital Storyteller + Journalist • IG @iamlex

My grandmother, or Nana as I called her, was probably the first Black superhero that I witnessed.

She could do everything — cook, sew, and handle business, all while juggling me on her lap.

Like most hardworking Black women of the baby boomer era, she was the Matriarch of my family, our “Big Momma.” Everyone came to Ruby Lee with their problems, my neighbors, my mom, my relatives. She was like the roots of a tree, giving us the strength to stand on our own.

I can still smell the aroma of collard greens boiling on the stove as Al…

(Klaus Vedfelt via Getty Images)

“You speak so well.”

I remember sitting in an interview, and the words rattled me just as quickly as my interviewer’s lips.

This is a common phrase many Black people hear from white people, especially in the workplace. Many feel like that it's a compliment, but it actually just comes off as classist and racist.

It's something I’ve heard almost my whole life, from mentors, professors, and other non-black people. Being “well-spoken” is just code for “You sound like me. You sound white.”

White people, this is NOT, repeat NOT a compliment to your Black friend, co-worker, or anyone else.

Black women are allowed to have emotions, including anger

Photo: DjelicS/Getty Images

“Bitter Black bitch!”

In a heated discussion about something I can’t even remember now, the three words pierced through my ears as they slipped from my Uncle Ron’s lips.

I realized this wasn’t the first time someone tried to silence me while I was simply trying to express myself. It was a gut punch that many women, especially Black women, have felt. It’s almost like the word bitch is a package deal with womanhood.

But this time was different; it was more personal.

Bitterness is often attributed to anger or resentment — an emotion not usually extended to women —…

A clip surfaced of rapper and hip-hop mogul 50 Cent, also known as Curtis Jackson, on Lil Wayne’s radio show on Apple Music where he was ranting about Black women’s reaction to him dating “exotic women.”

The common theme — Black women’s alleged anger.

Fortunately, the backlash on social media was more than swift (thank god!) Celebrities like Janelle Monae spoke out against the long and arduous history with Hip Hop and Misogynoir.

Misogynoir, a term coined by feminist scholar Moya Bailey, was created to address misogyny directed toward Black women in American visual and popular culture.

Black men have…

When Erik Killmonger, actor Micheal B. Jordan, said the line “ Hey Auntie,” in Black Panther — most black folks didn’t think much of it. Something about it felt natural, it felt so familiar to us.

Even though many Black people use “auntie” to show respect and reverence, Ava Duvernay spoke out against the title sighting she isn’t old enough to have it bestowed upon her yet.

Many people felt this was a tad bit dramatic, seeing that this is a term usually a title to signal respect toward an older woman who has proven to be audacious and wise.

Since Kobe Bryant’s death on January 26th due to a fatal helicopter crash, the world has been in disarray.

Kobe Bryant represented a lot not only crucial to sports and entertainment culture, but he was also one of our greats. Millions of fans, supporters, and celebrities shared their grief about the sports star.

Unfortunately, due to issues like racism, mass incarceration, and police brutality disproportionally affecting young black men, we aren’t’ afforded many.

So when Gaye King, journalist and long-time BFF of Oprah Winfrey got caught up during an interview with WNBA legend Lisa Leslie talking about Bryant’s past sexual…

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store