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Time Magazine Post Tells White Gays To "Stop Stealing Black Female Culture"

An opinion piece published by Time Magazine that includes a picture of Beyonce passionately demands that "white gays stop stealing black female culture."

Time's Sierra Mannie starts by writing:

You are not a black woman, and you do not get to claim either blackness or womanhood. There is a clear line between appreciation and appropriation.

I need some of you to cut it the hell out. Maybe, for some of you, it’s a presumed mutual appreciation for Beyoncé and weaves that has you thinking that I’m going to be amused by you approaching me in your best “Shanequa from around the way” voice. I don’t know. What I do know is that I don’t care how well you can quote Madea, who told you that your booty was getting bigger than hers, how cute you think it is to call yourself a strong black woman, who taught you to twerk, how funny you think it is to call yourself Quita or Keisha or for which black male you’ve been bottoming — you are not a black woman, and you do not get to claim either blackness or womanhood. It is not yours. It is not for you.

...

At the end of the day, if you are a white male, gay or not, you retain so much privilege. What is extremely unfairly denied you because of your sexuality could float back to you, if no one knew that you preferred the romantic and sexual company of men over women. (You know what I’m talking about. Those “anonymous” torsos on Grindr, Jack’d and Adam4Adam, show very familiar heterosexual faces to the public.) The difference is that the black women with whom you think you align so well, whose language you use and stereotypical mannerisms you adopt, cannot hide their blackness and womanhood to protect themselves the way that you can hide your homosexuality. We have no place to hide, or means to do it even if we desired them.

But you can still like Beyonce, according to Sierra. 

All of this being said, you should not have to stop liking the things you like. This is not an attempt to try to suck the fun out of your life. Appreciating a culture and appropriating one are very, very different things, with a much thicker line than some people think, if you use all of the three seconds it takes to be considerate before you open your mouth. If you love some of the same things that some black women love, by all means, you and your black girlfriends go ahead and rock the hell out. Regardless of what our privileges and lack of privileges are, regardless of the laws and rhetoric that have attempted to divide us, we are equal, even though we aren’t the same, and that is okay. Claiming our identity for what’s sweet without ever having to taste its sour is not. Breathing fire behind ugly stereotypes that reduce black females to loud caricatures for you to emulate isn’t, either.

What do you think of Sierra's demand for white gay men?

Comments

She has a right to her OPINION; that doesn't mean she even understands the life issues of queer folk.  I'm not sure how "privileged" I was when it was necessary to my survival that I did the best I could to appear "straight".  Even still, I couldn't suppress my natural expression enough to spare me the beatings and the taunting that were a part of my everyday experience.  I couldn't go home for comfort or safety, being that I got t

he same treatment there. I refuse to play "oppression macho", but when I got home, there was nobody to tell me that who I was as a person is good; or to teach me the history of my people's courage or achievements.  I got called "god damned faggot" yesterday in my yard.  So, no; I don't know how it feels to be a black woman in this culture, but you don't know how it feels to be a queer 'until you walk that mile on my road.  These divisions only prevent us from dealing with the hate that causes all this damage in the first place. Mary, we're both pretty.

I'm sorry for what you've been through.  Thank God the World is finally getting better, for everybody.  

: )  

Ever notice how blacks speak ghetto and then attempt to sound educated by using words that even the most sophisticated do not even use. Guess they are attempting to make up for the ghetto in them, but really just makes them sound even more uneducated with their overgrammar.

Ever notice how INTERNET TROLLS MASTURBATE FURIOUSLY whenever ANYBODY pays them even the slightest bit of attention?  

Enjoy your orgasm.  

Now that's just plain rude.

Gays pioneered shoulder bags for men. I'm going to write a piece excoriating straight guys for denigrating gay culture by slinging messenger bags over their shoulders.

As zero-sum victim-centric power games go, THIS is taking things to a whole new level of preposterousness. And Don Lemon, who I used to like, ought to be ashamed of himself for buying into it. He EVEN supports the outrageous argument that gay people have it easier than black people because they can "hide their homosexuality"--an argument that makes me, you should pardon the expression, white-hot with anger. The implication is that if a self-identified African-American is light enough to "pass for white," he/she is on velvet. 

Some blacks have been saying this crap for years, fearful that their status as America's number one put-upon minority is endangered by the gay rights movement, pissed when gays invoke Martin Luther King (as if King didn't invoke Gandhi), pissed that their privilege of looking down their noses at faggots is threatened when the faggots demand equality, make a claim on their solidarity, shame their homophobia, or point out that blacks have won the equal protection of the laws, and we have not. A thousand times, I've heard this "pass for straight" argument. I guess Don Lemon has chosen HIS side, but frankly, he set off MY gaydar from Day One.

African-Americans like this woman have really got to stop complaining whenever black culture penetrates the mainstream. When is she going to ask for jazz back?

Wow. Sierra...I'm ok with whatever it is you're offended by about white men emulating black women. BUT...that part about we gay white men don't deserve the attention and sympathy you deserve as a black woman because we can choose to hide our faggotness...I will never hide who I am. I'm sorry you apparently want to hide who you are but can't but that's NOT my problem.

Sigh!

Leave it to bigots, drama queens, the overeducated and the undereducated, the rich and the poor gays to get their undies in a twist.

To quote a Beyonce song: Listen.

Not all white gay males, whatever their social economic class, do this, but let's face it, some do. It's obvious. Some may have never faced anything bigoted in their lives until they came out and found something to adopt that they responded to. White Privilege exists. No one is saying anyone is a bigot or purposely being an asshat, but not knowing you are being offensive and then being offended that someone calls you out on something is the very nature of White Privilege.

The fact that some people in their responses say things like "talking black" is an example of White Privilege. You are not even aware that's offensive in it self. If you mean someone "talking street" over "talking black" is the same thing, it is not. Not all people who are black or any other color of the rainbow talk the same.

And then we have the gays who think because someone calls them a fag or queer that they suddenly understand what its like to be a black woman or a minority of color. Yes what someone said to you is bigoted, but thinking that being shamed for the color of your skin is somehow the same as something you can hide (well at least for some of us) is the same thing. It's not. It's still bad, but it is definitely not the same thing.

And even better are the white gays who call out people of color for "complaining"...are you somehow better than someone who isn't your color? Do you stick a dick in someone's ass? Do you take it up yours? Do you put another man's junk in your mouth? If none of these things are you and you are just lusting after someone without the physical...guess what...these things are all considered gay, queer, whatever the hell you want to call yourself. You are not above anyone. When someone calls another person a faggot, but you pass and no one thinks you are, guess what? If they knew you were or found out, you're still a faggot to that bigot too. No matter what you call yourself. You are not morally better because your skin is whiter than white. Being a dick is universal, no matter what color you are. No matter how much money you have. You and a person of color can both be dicks equally.

I am no better. I have white skin because of my mother but my father was Chicano (yep, believe it or not some Mexicans are born in the Unted States and we have our papers and everything). I live in both worlds of white and color. I'm "one of those beaners", I'm also a "cracker"...I'm both. But my color of the skin and my non Spanish sounding last name opens doors for me that my Latino brothers and sisters can't always open.

Maybe I'm being just as judgmental as everyone else, but wake the hell up. Who the hell is going to honor gay rights if all we do is argue amongst ourselves all the damn time.

Sierra gave her opinion. She's not wrong. She's also not completely right. But maybe if your outraged by what she's saying, maybe what you're feeling is what she wanted you to?

Agreed!  This is the smartest thing that I've read on this website!  

One things that is very similar is the hate that we both experience from the dominant culture.  

And, while some of us can hide, the war against us has gone on for thousands of years.  

why would anybody choose to act like a black?? They speak in an uneducated way out of the ghetto. Even the blacks that attempt to speak clearly and educated still sound ghetto toned.

To Anonymous:  spoken like a true pussy-ass bigoted fuckwad. You don't even have the balls to use your own name. Run along little asswipe. You're not wanted here

It's amazing you think you know a culture so well. I happen to be black, and am very educated. There are words in my vocabulary that you will find in Webster that you don't find in the urban dictionary, nor can you pronounce or spell. You are clearly one of the more ignorant types in the world 

There is a certain type of low end, low income gay that attempt to speak like a black girl, as they think it is cute. Please stop embarrassing yourselves and be who you are and not what you THINK is funny or cute.

The reality is that you are choosing to act like one of the lowest forms of existence there is, and that being of an uneducated negro.

Oh Sweetie, INTERNET TROLLS are much worse.  Here's some TROLL KIBBLE, now go away.  

Oh right, Brian Asher, cause all black people do is complain unjustified. I agree, there are so things we all need to get over, blacks and white, but Ms. Mannie has a great point about one thing. Blacks, don't get to stop being black. The very culture, language, and style that the world seems to like and copies, are the very things that get them arrested, killed and hated, when done in the black cultures. I have always found it funny how the black culture can be doing something for years unnoticed by media, until it's done by a white person. As far as I can see, nearly every mainstream show on TV now days has a gay man on it, twisting, popping and snapping, but can the same be said about black women, and when they are represented, they are the worst representation of them. There are some exceptions, but even those, the women are say,... sleeping with the married president and not valuing herself at all. So, Ms. Mannie has a point. I'm not suggesting that people shouldn't like who they like, but I am say, respect where she is coming from.

I didn't think it was possible, but the blacks found something else to complain about.  In today's world, this issue is as important as the price of eggs in Spain. Get over it. 

Preach!!! 

I'm black and im soooooo OVER beyonce! shes not my fav and plus this article is stupid and very ignorant...i LOVE britney spears so is that tellin me i needa stop takin away from "white culture" idk who wrote this but they sound dumb as fuck

Don't be so basic Roland. Clearly this article went over your head or you can't comprehend. **Sigh**

annnnnd YOUR TALKIN to me because.....

Well, I'm gay and I see strong black women as role models to emulate.  

I'm shy, but when I get really angry, something happens and it's like I'm channeling this "fearless rage."  

I feel empowered.  

That's actually sad and disturbing. 

You're actually sad & disturbing.  

Yet people can openly mock gays and the way they "behave" and it of course is no problem... Be who you wanna be and don't let some piece of shit tell you you shouldn't act a certain way.

Personally speaking I don't want to sleep with a white male I'm a blakkie ( black ) gay man, quiet frankly I enjoy my strictly black dickly so that arguement of not being allowed to sleep with white males its okay she won't. Now as a black gay I AM MOTHERFUCKING Beyonce!!! EAT IT!!! I AM BEYONCE! Case closed!

See my publicist if you deffer.

PLAIN AN SIMPLE - anthropology 101 = culture is appropriated and assimilated over time!

THERE IS NO ONE PURE CULTURE and that includes subcultures, orientations and any and all minorities - there is no pristine or more correct or higher or better or untouched cultural group. We all are equal and influence each other simultaneously (that is all at once and also reflexively). Hence, using behaviours of others in imitation sense means that it is learned behaviour as is all cultural practices, from cooking to speaking to even walking that are human ways of life.  Hence, if one walks with swag or like a fairy walking by nature is learned human behaviour, so by that right the way you walk in your subculture doesn't matter because walking is learned and shared culture amongst all.  Everything in culture is meant to be shared.  FYI the walking comment was an example as we are bipedal and used to be quadrupedal before if you believe in evolution.

I THINK THE WRITER AND SOME ON HERE WOULD BENEFIT FROM SOME CULTURAL ANTHROPOLOGY CLASSES IN ORDER TO KNOW HOW TO ARGUE ABOUT CULTURES AND RACE - Equality and Freedom with all humans is the definition of RESPECT (Aretha ***Screech***)

MM

Who is this fishy cunt to tell anyone what to do?

Fuck Off Be what...Beyonce !! Ignorant so called singer, who gives a toss about her silly opinion anyway

Um, dude... you do realize that Beyonce didn't write this. Don't you? Twas just her picture.

^^^lol!!!!

This GIRL is twisted.  Whatever elusive white dictator she thinks controls her life is only further empowered by divisive rants like the one she posted.  Maybe she should spend less time worrying about meaningless social phenomena and more time developing her cooking and cleaning skills.  Then she can be a "real" WOMAN since we're playing stereotypes.  I don't hold empathy anymore for people who compare pain and struggles.  It's weak and a luxury, and a fight I'm not looking to win.  "Strong Black Women" don't waste their precious time writing insensitive diatribes attacking other minorities.  They do the damn thing and mind their business. *hair toss* (yea I went there haha)

Who's Beyonce stealing from then? :)

This is ridiculous,   When I came out, yrs ago......gay men were outing black women singers, actresses and just plain dishing the "T" with your girl friends.   It wasn't a negative thing. It was all in good fun and admiration to black women.  That's all.

Ebrace the flattery and copy-cattery!  The more straight men trim their eye-brows, and wear metro-clothes, the better it will be for us faggs.  Any black person who is not insecure should be thrilled that us ( minorities, the bullied, the ridiculed, the un-equalied-righted, etc. ) are getting some exposure.  Eventually it will all be a nice mix.  It seems like this person would be the first in line to yell at a black guy dating a white chick.  Which is soooo 1995.  We are all going to be "colored" sooner or later.  

The woman is a complete racist moron.

Some people need to be clued into the fact that, imitation is the most sincere form of flatter.  I'm a white gay man, should I stop eating sushi too? The western world is a melting pot of all cultures. Here is another line for you control freaks, you're not fucking me and your not paying my bills, I'll do whatever I want. Bitches!

The motive to imitate is irrelavant. If someone tells you they find what you are doing offensive, believe them. You don't get to decide for another person how they feel or how they experience something. Attempting to deter the offended from their shared experience is invalidation which is mental abuse. It concerns me that you state you would allow someone to tell you what to do if they provided you compensation or interracted sexually with you. This is a mentality charactetistic of someone being sexually abused and or prostituted against their will. There are support groups and counseling for these issues. If you've experienced either ofthese things I encourage you to seek help. Lastly, please don't use theword "bitch." It 's not ok.

See the thing is, you're completely wrong. No one has to believe people who look for something to complain about like this. I don't believe that her point is valid, and I don't think that she has articulated herself well or explained properly what her beef is. When someone is just angry (and bitchy) because of some bigoted or self serving motivation, I am fine with disregarding their point of view completely. This woman is either using this topic as a platform to get her name out there, or she has serious socialization issues. 

It's not ok for you to say what is ok, BITCH!!!!!

Well considering I was saying girl this and that since I was drinking a 40 oz @17 years old on 11th and Atkinson with my black sisters years before Beyonce was born, I accept her bad excuse for a dress and an apology, but once per customer..

Color, Picture Gibblin,

Gibblin side to side

Up and Down Up and Down,

Back to Color.

I agree that a gay man should never call himself a black woman. But as far as saying "girrrrl" and the like - there is a danger in defining identity by behavior.  A woman could use the same paradigm to argue all gay men should stop doing drag.  As long as you are genuine and not mocking someone, then be yourself.  All human behavior is learned by copying.  All.  Nobody gets to copyright anything and keep it for themselves.  She should be proud that snapping your fingers has become popular.  

I disagree, if one of my black friends does something to piss me off, the words "You dirty black bitch" might come out of my mouth. Same goes with them, it depends on how much you're authorized. She just don't like to see fake white bitches trying to play it off like they're all that but, she forgets about the .1 percent.

Sincerely,

the 1% :)

This bitch needs to take several seats and calm the fuck down

Lordy, the whole stadium, sit in every seat for a minute and think, she'd get the picture.

Sierra an'tMannie is another typical nasty ghetto 'hoe! If white gay can't copy black female celebs, then black women can't date white men.

Actually I believe gay's were a major influence which helped start the slang, it really was. I think you can read "Call me Miss Ross" and in her book Diana Ross talks about being introduced to gay clubs and the evolution of the black and gay culture and usage of tones and integration. Being called GIRL and everything.

Watch out, it's a shocker of a book.

Yup, and another interesting book from the same era is : "The Queen's English".  It defines and sources "gay banter' or "camp" and you'll be surprised (or not).  We are a creative people.  Also, Susan Sonteig's "Notes On Camp" ca. '70's.   Bitches

Correction: Sierra Mannie. If white gay males can't copy black female celebs...lol

Wow, well as a black gay male I am stunned. We all, gay or straight have grown up in different environments, different niches, etc... My family taught me to see beyond my skin tone. I'm not bothered by the mannerisms and gestures of others, no matter what  their race may be, as long as the person is being genuine, then that's just who they are. It's simply ignorant to call out a person for being their natural self, now if they're just flat out imitating out of spite, that's a different issue all it's own. 

Really there isn't more to talk about the whom stolen who's personal expression. We didn't bitch when Madonna took Vogue to public main stream..why are we bitching now. Let's move on to topics like living in constant fear of being killed by rocket attacks like the gays do in Israeli right now.. or how in Russia you can be publicly attack for being gay. How about even in Europe there is a new Neo National movement attacking gay youth centers!! Move on to worldly topics and stop being so self absorbed!!

Pop culture, which includes black woman, admittedly steals phrases, fashions, music, dance, theater and the like from gay culture.

Who do you think is choreographing Beyonce's dance routines? Who do you think is designing her gowns and costumes for her concerts? Who do you think did her hair and make up? Who do you think filmed her music videos and was the photographer behind her fashion shoots?

Gays have always been ahead of the trend. If anything you have gay culture to thank for basically everything fabulous in this world, hunty. And that's the T

Agreed, also gender "laws" are put into question every day. Telling a man to step back from being feminine and saying we can hide is bullshit. Some of us are not masculine and some of us grew up in the same culture strong black women have... Don't tell us how to act and we won't you either.

Yes and yes!!!!!   I agree!

She isn't a Time writer, she's just an ignorant student from Mississippi --

Sierra Mannie is a rising senior majoring in Classics and English at the University of Mississippi. She is a regular contributor to the Opinion section of the school’s student newspaper, The Daily Mississippian, where this article originally appeared. 

Girl, then why don't you stop trying to appropriate white culture with your hair straightening, coloring and the like? It's not like black women never appropriated anything.

I agree with Sierra on one point: it is true that people who are black and/or female cannot (easily) hide their blackness womanness. I guess the "privilege" of hating yourself and hiding who you are from yourself and everyone around you for as long as it takes to go out on a limb and come clean, risking rejection by those closest to you is yet another "privilege" exclusive to us gays. Lucky us.

I agree with Bootylicious: Bye Felicia!!! Sashay away!!!

Yeah being isolated from your family and community is such a privilege. 

B.S.  Much of what he calls Black Female Mannerisms is how many naturally gay boys are from birth.  Comparing to Beyonce is a terrible analogy because she doesn't act nearly as gay as many of the white gay guys do.  I think the guy who wrote this is a wanna-be flamboyant fag but he probably lives or works in a city or town where he's afraid to behave in his "authentic" gay self. GFY.   Oooops.  Is Sierra a black woman that wishes she had the fun personality of a gay white boy but doesn't want to act that way because people will tell her that she's acting "GAY"?  That ruins my whole post hahahaha.

I think this piece is coming from a very narrow mind. It's like telling black women stop wearing blonde weaves "girl who you think you foolin', we all know you can't grow hair and blonde at that". We don't tell Queen Bey, do we? No she is who wants to be. We don't tell black artist to stop signing white style music like Gym Class Heroes. Who ever wrote this just set the Black Community a few years. If we should act like our own race then stop doing white people stuff like going to college and getting great careers. I can't believe that Time Magazine published this. #fuckensad #bitchgrowup #weareallwhowewanttobe

Can't grow hair? Pump ya breaks boo. If u want to check her, check her, but the whole can't grow hair statement is a but too much.

Get over it. That old Black vs White card has been played to death.

Says someone who is clearly a white male

She lost me when she started playing the "I'm more of a victim than you are" game. Over her.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and I think gay men have adopted the black female mannerisms as their own because that is who their personality identifies with. Who do you want them to emulate Martha Stewart? Take it as a compliment that somebody wants to be ratchet as hell and get over it. Really is it that big of a deal? Also it's entertaining. 

Thank you!

Oh, just look at all the white, cis-gendered male tears

says someone hiding behind anonymity. 

Wow. Talk about spreading hate . This is like telling sam smith to stop singing . This really doesn't bother me. I'm just saying WWBD . She's worked so hard to make all of us "gays" white, black , Mexican ect..... to love her and respect ourselves. It's your opinion hunny bunch, have fun with it. I don't judge ;o*. Respect Beyonce as much as we do. Remember what she did to Kanye West with Taylor Swift ?Think about it ,speak for yourself. ... which is what you're doing. Thank you for that. Sometimes you can't hide what your just amazing at doing.

I agreed with this article up until: "black women... cannot hide their blackness and womanhood to protect themselves the way that you can hide your homosexuality."

This shows the author's own ignorance. Not all gay men can hide their sexuality. I'm not exactly flaming, but I've never been able to pass for straight over any length of time, even when I've tried my hardest (ie when stuck in a sexist/homophobic workplace). This has meant that I am excluded from many aspects of male privilege, as these are really only "straight male privilege". 

For many gay men, there's no magical switch they can flick to transform their demeanour & mannerisms in order to fully-partake in the unfair glory of male privilege, just like black women can't switch off either their blackness or their womanhood.

With so many minorities who "pass" for different races, the "you get to hide because you are white" does not work so much anymore. Not like hiding in shame is still any kind of "privilege" anyway, as the author so disgracefully implies. The post is incredibly racially biased, but it is published and discussed, not deemed racist and vilified, because of perceptions surrounding the source.

And just where would all these women be without all the white gay boys, girls?  These white gay boys are, by the way, the one same ones who do make all the money and pay for your weaves and stage costumes baby girl. neck snaps, and rolls with lots of finger snaps, even.  

LOL!

You cannot accuse white gays of stealing what is being sold to them. You need to go after the straight white people who are turning 'black female culture' into a commodity. Also, this article lists homophobic stereotype after homophobic stereotype, and does it pretty hatefully. You can't fight one stereotype using another to highlight it - It nullifies your argument. It ignores completely that gay people of all colours are a minority that are also subjugated, and requests that we not be 'so gay', and says that we are lucky because white gay men and women don't HAVE to 'look' that way. The point is, gay men shouldn't HAVE to hide the fact they are gay, they shouldn't have to butch up in order to avoid being targeted. If you're going to ask gay men to alter their behaviour in order to be less effeminate, then you also have to accept it when someone says "be less ghetto' to a black woman. See my point? Two wrongs can't make a right. It also completely ignores the fact that so much of the language she talks about being appropriated finds it's base in gay culture in New York of the 80's, and then goes onto appropriate that language (spilling tea) in the exact same way she is requesting others not to. Gay people of any race or social background have a right to that language. Also, I don't see the problem with people who have been persecuted finding strength and inspiration in celebrating other people who have been persecuted.

As a side note, I really don't like Beyonce. I really don't like the suggestion that I am a whoreish cock monger who wants to bottom for every 'black daddy' I encounter on a hook up app that I don't actually have. I have met gay men who fit these images, but to tar and feather every gay man as a Beyonce wannabe shows a limited and homophobic view. Maybe the writer should try and get some better friends in order to find a better perspective. I understand what this article is about, I recognise the problems it points to, but it's handled with all the grace and delicacy of a giraffe of roller skates. Please try harder.

Very eloquently stated. Brava!

Do have to remember it's an opinion piece. My two cents though would be along the lines of who dictates what is considered black female culture? We are all a collection of our experiences, and there is no such thing as an experience exclusive to a group of people. Create your own culture. Just be yourself, the fact that some people might dislike that is just something we all have to learn to deal with.

Oh, I think a more important question is - "What does BEYONCE have to say?"  And I am thinking it will be something akin to . . . "Sierra, girlfriend . . . best to STFU now.  Because, I wouldn't HAVE a career without all those gay boys . . . "

Gurl, why you be hatin? Bye Felicia. 

It's an opinion piece. She stated her opinion. Good for her ;)

Yes, it was her opinion. Glad we cleared that up, but I don't think the discussion was whether it was actually an opinion or not. I don't believe anyone claimed what she said was a fact. So yes, it appears it was an opinion. In my opinion, her opinion was an idiotic opinion. You do realize that opinions are intended to illicit a response, don't you? Often those responses are not in alignment with the opinion.

As you can tell, I really hate meaningless stock comments like "it was her opinion." As if that's supposed to be the end of it.

Ghetto 'hoe! If white gay men can't pretend to be black female celebs, then she and other likewise black bitches can't sleep with white men.

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