By Tasha Mac
By now, everyone has seen the video “Auntie Mo’Nique” posted lovingly chastising women for going out in public wearing bonnets, headscarves, and slippers. It is this week’s “break the internet topic.” As with most subjects, there are those in support of Mo’Nique’s commentary, and there are those who disagree to the point where they are dragging her up and down social media as if she spat on a 90-year-old blind woman, pushed her down, and stole her monthly check (I had to make the comparison gruesome so you can get the point of how badly she’s being dragged through the internet streets.)
Before you read my opinion, because that’s what it is my viewpoint of what she said, I would encourage you to be open-minded and read to understand, not to respond with your comment of disapproval (but of course, all feedback is welcomed). With that being said, I absolutely, positively, 100%, without a doubt, agree with her thoughts concerning this matter. I viewed her video and took it all in; her approach, demeanor, and I believe Mo’Nique spoke from a place of love and concern. But apparently, that didn’t matter because most people saw RED, and they were out for blood. Listen! I know we are living in the Pro-Black Women Movement days. We love Black women, defending them, supporting them, and encouraging them in every way, on every side. And I love it! We all know Black women have been the most disrespected, underserved group of people going back centuries. And, these days, the Culture has a zero-tolerance policy for anything that is perceived as negative regarding Black Women (unless you’re a self-proclaimed relationship guru telling Black Women they aren’t good enough for a “High Value” man, then it’s okay to say whatever you want to and about Black Women, the eyeroll emoji is at the end of this sentence.) No one knows the pain, plight, and passion of the Black Woman as I do. I live and breathe it. So, of course, I am an advocate for my sisters. But dare I ask, who is brave enough to hold Black women accountable? Because, with all our brilliance, crown-wearing, and being beautiful bosses, we are not perfect. According to the Bible, the older women are supposed to teach the younger women. I know that Black women have been picked upon so much until we are just allowing them to do whatever they want, be whomever they want on their terms. There are times when I must check myself for total transparency because I have gotten caught up in the Black Women Liberation Movement, too and I cheer and cheer, but then I see something that doesn’t resonate with me, and I must pause.
There isn’t anything wrong with teaching women to take pride in their appearance. People will treat you according to how presentable you are. Mo’Nique didn’t say have on a full face of makeup or designer clothes. The lady said, STOP WEARING BONNETS, SCARVES, AND SLIPPERS IN PUBLIC! It isn’t befitting for a lady or a Queen to be unseemly in public. You are first representing God and the Kingdom, your family, and yourself. Queen Esther (the book of Esther) saved her people because of her beauty and how she adorned herself. The point of this is how she used wisdom and not emotion to win over the King and saved her people.
You never know who you may meet in a public place. I’m not talking about celebrities. Many Black women have and aspire to start businesses, run businesses, become authors, etc.…. A business deal can go down anywhere, not just in a board room. Women should always take pride in their appearance when outside of the home. I have a plethora of examples of how my taking pride in my appearance has gained me favor, favor that blessed me and others as well. I see many memes and posts on social media of women talking about “fixing each other’s crowns.” Do you know that sometimes fixing each other’s crowns may be telling another sister something that is out of order so she can get in order? That’s precisely what Monique did, and now she has fallen into the hands of an Angry Black Culture.
If we cannot correct each other in love, then what good are we to each other? What are we teaching the generations who are coming behind us? Furthermore, is the creed of Black Women should do what they want the new interpretation for “train up a child?” Because we all know children are watching everything. They will not do what adults say they do; they will do what they see adults do. Is this what we want to teach our daughters? God, I hope not.
We should have each other’s backs all the way. Not just when the good things happen, but we should be able to lovingly say when we disagree with behavior that may be a hindrance for our sisters. My therapist says, “I am not my sister’s keeper; I AM MY SISTER.” That’s so deep to me, and I know she means it. How many of us will say, I am my sister? Because what happens to one of us happens to all of us. Instead of defending the right to wear a bonnet in public, consider the ramifications behind what you’re defending. There are better and more productive ways for Black Women to fight for their liberation and support the plight of others. Attacking Mo’Nique for a teaching moment isn’t one of them.
Latasha McGillis a Contributing Writer for the Pedestal Project, LLC. Tasha Mac is a mom of four adult daughters, a vegan, and a workout junkie who lives by the mantra Whole Person Healthy. It is her journey of total wellness in all areas of life. She enjoys encouraging, uplifting, and inspiring people to discover their own journey of total wellness and seek wholeness and freedom every day. Her favorite guilty pleasure is veggie chips with hummus or guacamole.