Okay, I will admit to laughing like hell when I saw this shot of Tyler Perry and the new Academy Award-winning actress, Lupita N’yongo. I’ll also be completely honest and own the fact that I thought the same thing. Nonetheless, I only found the image comical and not a call to arms.
Sure, there is a possibility that Perry may send Lupita’s agent a script that centers on a downtrodden single mother on welfare and Popeye’s two-piece dark meat Tuesday specials ‘cause her deadbeat baby daddy – played by Tyson Beckford – ain’t worth a good damn and it’s only when one of Mary Jane Paul’s boyfriends swoops in with a Bible and a blue collar that she gets to exhale, shoop-shoop. But damn, can we not fixate on that right now? History was just made on Sunday, so why not just rock our hips, then wave and sip in the glory?
I know that in the age of social media, an opinion waits for no man, but I just don’t believe Al Gore invented the Internet for some of your cousins to constantly run amuck over the most inconsequential, completely innocent photo. Why, I do declare that we were lied to, y’all: A picture isn’t always worth a thousand words.
The same goes for your tweets, your Instagram word memes, and your essay-length Facebook status updates.
Seriously, why can’t some of us ever chill?
Even before this photo made its way to the web, I saw a few messages along the lines of:
“What about Kimberly Reece? We let Jasmine Guy still appear on WeTV, but where is the good doctor? That ain’t right!”
I don’t know where she is, but I know I hate tit for tats and false equivalences.
Ditto for this one: “OH, Y’ALL CARE ABOUT LUPITA N’YONGO, BUT WHERE WERE Y’ALL WHEN VIOLA DAVIS POST UP, FLAWLESS! RIDIN’ ROUND IN IT, FLAWLESS! FLOSSIN’ ON THAT, FLAWLESS!!!”
Well, most of us were saying on Oscar night that year, “We love your natural, it looks better than those wigs, sis. We love how built you are. We want you to win even if this sanitized story about segregation makes us want to stab our eyes out with a Black Power Fist Afro Pick.”
Remember, kids: Just because you can’t recall something not happening (given you not bothering to pay attention at the time, usually) doesn’t mean that it didn’t. And do we really need to compare N’yongo to every other dark-skinned actress in Hollywood? Is that really a debate you want to have?
Read the rest at EBONY.