On the month of April, The Guardian newspaper has released an article series called Shade of Black, which has been tackling the topic of colorism. Colorism is the discrimination of people based on skin tone. Although it is an issue that is global, there is no doubt that black people, are more vocal about it. The series have had articles on talking to children about colorism, skin lightening cream, dark-skinned women in the media, but one topic that ruffled a whole bunch of feathers on twitter. The article titled “Dark-Skinned Women Don’t Get Married” created a lot controversy online due to the title coming off as demeaning dark-skinned women and without many people even reading the article, The Guardian was met with backlash from black twitter.
Although, the title is the perfect example of clickbait going wrong, the article was backed up with nothing but facts. The writer of the article, Dream McClinton, talks about her experience with online dating as a darker-skinned black women, experiences with colorism in high school and in college. McClinton also includes the experiences of other dark-skinned women when it comes to colorism as well statistic that shows that dark skin women are the least likely to get married.
The sentiment that I found on twitter from black people across the board was that The Guardian, which is a white publication, was airing out the dirty laundry in the black community. While I understand the embarrassment and the anger towards title, which has been changed to “Why dark-skinned women like me are not getting married”, the article is the last thing that black people should be mad about.
Black people should be angry about the fact that we live in a community where we are following the same practice that we claim to hate. Colorism is more than just playground banter, more than just someone having a preference, more than just seeing people who looks like you on television. It is a practice that have real life consequences. Colorism equates to having a longer jail sentence, not being hired for certain jobs, skin bleaching, and as McClinton’s article shows, Not being seen as marriage material. That is an issue that can not be ignored. This is not to say that dark-skinned people, specifically dark-skinned women will have a horrible life and will experience colorism in every facet in their lives, but that it is a strike that can be used against them.
So yes, black twitter should be angry about The Guardians article; not because of the title and what the topic was about, but because of the unfortunate truth that was stated and how as a community we are extremely divisive towards our own people.