I watched the documentary, even knowing that this might be giving credence to all of what I like to call “ignorant conscious folks.” You know the type well: these are the men and some women, who believe that everything, including their own mistakes, helplessness, insecurities and misgivings in life, are the fault of white men and their evil and manipulative black women cohorts. These are the folks that will in one hand hold black women up as queens of the earth but are also quick to sloganeer some misogynist, and occasionally violent language and action for those who fail to live up to their expectation of what a queen is suppose to be.
Through very real examples of black history and achievements were included, these scholars and historians also manage to weave a web of conspiracy, which makes black women into pathological figures who seek to harm the black man through their choices to obtain a degree and good jobs and homes. Throughout the film, Nasheed and some of the other historians non-historically asserted that black men are being emasculated by feminism, which teaches women to talk back freely and demand rights they don’t even need, and say that homosexuality only seeks to take black men out of their pants and put them into dresses. No, seriously, they really said that. Likewise, the “feminization” of the public education, which has not produced enough challenging “man work,” is the direct cause behind why women are obtaining higher degrees in education at greater rates than men, and why men have greater drop-out rates than women. Yup, that was in there too. So was the idea that the men are helpless in fending off all this sexual energy from these oversexed, European-minded black women, who are keeping black men away from their righteous paths.
After watching the first Hidden Colors documentary, I realized two things: First, my male friend who suggested this film to me is a freakin’ idiot, and now I suspect him to be a closet misogynist. And secondly, we must be in a real desperate state in our community for both knowledge and overall historical respect, if we are willing to promote these regressive gender roles and hyper-masculine ideas for the sake of black pride and power, even as these ideas tends to contribute to reasons why violence and abuse, among women in particular, are so pervasive and not taken seriously in the community.
And this is exactly why I refuse to watch the second Hidden Colors documentary, no matter how much praise it receives from those within the “conscious community.” I refuse to watch any nonsense, which trivializes the very real racial subjugation of black folks in order to promote a belief that the best way to uplift the community is through the continued degradation of black women. Despite what the documentary wants us to believe, our sexism and homophobia is not a triumph; instead, it is the continued recipe for how we as a community, stay losing.