This comment (some people think it’s a compliment) either makes me laugh or want to slap someone, just depends on the mood I’m in. I mean what is that supposed to mean really? Take note I’m not talking about simply commenting on the beautiful color of someones skin, hair texture, eye color, etc. Like all that is cool.
“You’re pretty for a black girl.” I’ve heard this phrase so much recently I finally started to try and break down as to why it rubs me the wrong way.
I realized that it’s the same as saying to someone, “You’re pretty for your age” or “You speak good English for a Mexican”. It usually comes from a place of preconceived stereotypes. Telling someone that she’s pretty for a/an (insert race here) usually means that you have never found that race of women to be particularly attractive. Which is completely FINE. Never have I tried to change someones mind about who they are attracted to or find pretty, but if you’re trying to use that as a compliment, IT’S NOT, and never will be. So please stop. It doesn’t make the other person feel pretty or flattered, it’s quite the opposite. Instead it leaves them in defense mode, scraping to find the right words to respond to the “compliment” you just gave them. It says about you, the person who’s dishing out the compliment that you don’t normally roll with people who look like me, but that I’ve become your exception.
It’s like after that comment why would I want to be your “exception” anyways? I think I’d want to be around people who found my culture interesting as a whole, not just one tiny part of it.
At the end of the day I’m not ranting about this to beat people down but to inform. Why can’t we just be beautiful? Why can’t someone just be athletic or smart or well traveled? Comments like this will probably never stop, but if I can voice my opinion and keep a few people from saying things like this then I’ve done my part. So, the next time you’d like to compliment a lady, tell her that she’s just beautiful, period. Not beautiful for being Black, Asian, or Indian, just beautiful.
Peace and love babes.
*Image source, Being Mary Jane