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It’s the most wonderful time of the year, when people are encouraged immensely to boost their calorie intake, credit card debt and alcohol levels (so long as they’re not driving; we frown upon that). It’s also the period in which each of us can do a little inventory—namely in the form of New Year’s resolutions—and figure out how to make our next year better than our present. Some people frown upon this practice, but those people are annoying and joyless.

With that in mind, I’m here to share plenty of resolutions and hopes for the New Year—only none will be directly related to me ’cause that’s not your business.

1. Rachel Dolezal will get the hell on somewhere with her white self.

I don’t want to hear this woman’s name ever again. She is white with weave and an aggressive tan. She thought she was going to be some transformative figure with her shtick, but at this point, all she’s done is add names to black folks’ enemies list and get put on blast by the co-hosts of The Real.That’ll be cute for a future episode of Oprah’s Where Are They Now? In the meantime, go be white in private, Fake-Ass Freddie Brooks.

2. People will stop pretending that Jaden Smith is a philosopher.

Some of your cousins give this lil’ boy way too much life with that psychobabble he spouts. I’ve read that Jaden has secured a book deal, so this post does seem moot. However, I have high hopes that enough folks will finally realize all this teenager does is mouth off a bunch of religious texts from Jesus, Buddha, Muhammad and Xenu that were tossed in a Crock-Pot and cooked slowly—like some stew that you think is good for you but will only prove to ravage your stomach (only in this case, it’s your brain).

3. Donald Trump will become the GOP presidential nominee or, at the very least, the Ross Perot of the 2020s.

I’m not voting for that fool with the foolish hair, but I am firm in my stance that he is nothing more than the modern Republican Party set to a higher volume. He is no less bigoted or unserious than his competition; he’s merely more entertaining and appealing to their core audience. He’ll also ruin any chance for a Republican to win next November. So, go ’head with your bad (head of hair) self!

4. Frank Ocean will release a new album.

Even Adele is like, “Damn, homie. What’s good on that new project?” I’m paraphrasing, but the point is, she feels me and is, also, tired of the wait.

5. Kanye West will finally release his new album.

I’m less excited about this, majorly because it will lead to Kanye talking in public, and I’ve made clear my thoughts on the David Koresh of rap’s racial musings. But I’m still curious to hear what he’s been working on.

6. Rihanna will drop Anti.

I love Rih-Rih, but this has got to be one of the biggest mishandled projects from a major pop star in recent memory—and maybe ever. That aside, I need new Rihanna music in my life. My workout has not been the same, and the same goes for my body-roll-drop combo. Like, sis, stop playing with my spirit and hand over the new-new already. If the masses don’t like it, just go back to your usual and drop 17 more albums by the end of this sentence. I miss you; mean it.

7. The physical fighting will stop on The Real Housewives of Atlanta.

I watch Love & Hip Hop, so I’m obviously fine with my glorified soap operas sometimes giving me teases of UFC. However, not if it doesn’t fit the premise of the show. The Real Housewives of Atlanta is supposed to be about rich women—real or imagined, in some cases—who co-exist in the cattiest of ways. Cattiness is fine, but in the past two seasons, I’ve seen kicks to the stomach, punches thrown in the air and other antics that recall the let-out of a hood club. I don’t like it. I want them to take it back down to level 5, versus their current wave, level 57.

Read the rest at The Root.

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Sometimes I wonder why I even bother trying to refute the myth that black people have a monopoly on homophobia when there’s some colored cornball rushing to perpetuate this falsehood for white consumption.

When I was sent “Being a Gay Rapper: A Social Experiment,” I assumed based on the title that maybe it would be some fresh, funny take on the actual state of homophobia in hip-hop as opposed to the trope that speaks more to 1995 than 2015. Unfortunately, that is not the case here. Instead, comedian – and I’m using that title out of courtesy – Ben Bizuneh focuses on the disingenuous question, “Just how accepted homosexuality is in black America?”

You can’t see me, but at this very moment, I’m trying to stop myself from falling asleep at my desk. In any event, the skit begins with a joke and Bizuneh goes on to note, “It’s even worse in the black community.” That’s a lie considering it’s long been proven that black people make up the largest share of the LGBT community.

There’s also a new study that shows a majority of Christians in the U.S. are now more accepting of homosexuality.

Yes, Pew found that when it comes to support between 2007 to now, seven-in-10 Catholics say “the gay” should be accepted. For others, mainline Protestants (from 56% to 66%), Orthodox Christians (from 48% to 62%) and members of the historically black Protestant tradition (from 39% to 51%) have jumped in support as well. Remember: not all black Christians are in the black protestant tradition.

But why would facts matter to when your aim is to snuggle mainstream media folklore for careerist goals?

Bizuneh goes on to argue, “Black dudes can’t even pretend to be gay for acting roles.” He then lists all of these white actors who have played gay, though Will Smith playing a gay man in Six Degrees of Separation predates them all. Bizuneh then conveniently leaves out the reality that when it comes to offering a wide spectrum of black manhood, Hollywood – controlled majorly by non-black people – is lacking overall.

Are you laughing yet?

Then there is the actual “gag” in which Bizuneh seeks to recreate a hip-hop video based on every cliché he learned about the culture from BET videos that aired damn near a decade ago only with a twist: a song that’s actually about a man giving another man a hand job. In essence, he wants to troll a bunch of straight men by having them stand there and sing along to a song about a man jerking off another man.

Hear this in Toni Braxton’s voice: How many ways, I hate you.

For starters, this skit features someone who doesn’t really seem to understand the culture trying to speak on it. He does by way of trolling people as he has them perform the very stereotypes about gay people that make these kind of straight men uncomfortable. He is reducing gay men to sex, which is no less a stereotype than the effeminate gay male or down low brother (a term that should’ve caught a fatal stroke after that episode Oprah). Gay men are sexual beings, but to goad straight men into performing a song that plays directly into their fears feels fruitless if the intent is to highlight how gay men can – gasp – be just like any other man.

Read the rest at VH1.

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I nearly choked to death at the Game’s grand display of hypocrisy on Instagram.

The rapper-turned-reality-star and virtual dick tease posted a graphic of an exceptionally large black man placing a crown on the mane of a rather demure-looking black woman. The image reminded me of one of those pictures I see for sale on 125th Street alongside images of the Obamas having dinner with Jesus, Malcolm X, and Tupac Shakur. The gender politics in that JJ Evans School of Art piece are astoundingly stupid.

The Game’s caption reminded me of typical dumb shit I read from men on social media, making it even worse.

He wrote: “In a world full of insta-famous, 1/2 clothed, airbrush your skin app using, duck lip doing, poke my but out, find the right angle, selfie taking for attention, club hosting for scraps, 500k followers with no morals having women, you’re lucky if you find her…. & if you do, crown her… for she is YOUR QUEEN. One time for the working class women, the single mothers grinding that 9-5 as well as the future, doctors, lawyers, teachers etc… who value their self worth & just finished finals & are glad to finally be on Christmas break cause they worked so hard this semester to get closer to achieving their dreams….. This ones for you”

Then there was the exceptionally long hashtag that took shots at women who sell waist trainers, “detox” tea, and teeth whiteners.

This is hilarious for numerous reasons. One, he upholds a certain type of woman over another in this post, but in his music, it’s very clear his misogyny reduces women majorly to sexual objects. Two, when he talks about women who shill products like waist trainers, he’s talking about a very specific segment of the population: reality stars, or if you’re the Game, co-workers. Three, and most important, this man has been showing his dick print via Instagram i.e. the male equivalent of the poke-my-butt-out girls he’s trying to condemn on Instagram.

He did this for the same reason other people put up suggestive pictures: attention. Such is everyone’s right, but the problem is no one who puts their erect dick on the Internet has room to talk about anyone else doing the same thing. It’s why black women who saw the Game’s clear intent leveled the same sort of regal-theme criticism at him after the first picture surfaced.

Unfortunately, the Game is not the only famous man who has engaged in similar antics. Equally regrettable is each of those men also escaped the sort of criticism their female counterparts are met with upon any display of sexuality.

There was B.o.B, who this time last year began the “#EggplantFriday” craze. Not long after did Cash Out follow suit. And Chris Brown. And Trey Songz, though he’s been on that wave for quite some time. And more recently, Usher.

Read the rest at Complex.

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In an interview with The Advocate, Tina Fey was asked about what is arguably the brightest spot of Netflix’s very funny show The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt: Titus Andromedon, played by Tituss Burgess. It was noted that some have criticized the Titus character as a “gay stereotype” and Fey was questioned as to whether or not an effeminate gay male character can ever exist on television without controversy. In response, Fey argued, “I know people like Titus. If a person exists, it’s fair game.”

Of course, it’s a bit more complicated than that. My first memory of gay black men on television was the “Men on Film” segment on In Living Color. While many chuckled at the overly effeminate Blaine Edwards (played by Damon Wayans) and Antoine Merriweather (played by David Allen Grier), I was horrified. As a child who knew he liked boys in the way most of the other boys felt about girls, their caricature-like depictions made for a bad introduction into what gay life meant.

And while gay white men have since enjoyed more nuanced depictions of what it means to be a gay man, it’s still fairly new terrain for gay black men. There are more facets to gay black characters like Jamal Lyons on Empire or Brooklyn Nine-Nine’s Captain Ray Holt, but these are very recent additions to the landscape. That said, to Fey’s point, what makes Titus’ character different than Blaine, Antoine, and all of the stereotypically gay black characters of yore is that a gay black man is actually behind the character, thus able to add nuance and depth.

Yes, if a person exists, theoretically “it’s fair game.” But the game would be much fairer if the person you know truly exists gets to be as multi-dimensional as the white woman who created him on paper. Fey and Burgess have done well, but I’m not at a point where I can trust scripted television to correctly portray an effeminate gay male character—and to a degree, any gay black character—particularly if the person penning the character is writing an experience they don’t know anything about.

Thankfully, there have been other depictions of gay black men on television upending the status quo in a veritable way.

Consider the now-cancelled Bravo series Fashion Queens. Initially, many compared the show’s gay black male co-hosts, Derek J and Miss Lawrence, to Blaine and Antoine. All parties involved challenged such association.

When asked about gay stereotypes, co-host Bevy Smith said: “Here’s the thing about the gay stereotype conversation: I understand what people are saying and they have a right to the way they feel, but my thing is that if the boys all of a sudden ‘butched up’ or changed direction in who they are comfortable being, then that would be much more horrible than people being uncomfortable, because the boys are fashion flexible and have a bit of androgyny about themselves.”

Smith went on to note that the two “have a right to dress the way they want to, speak the way they want to.”

At the time, I was one of the people who questioned the co-hosts, but Smith’s remarks challenged me and pushed me to evolve my stance. They were simply being themselves on the show. Who was I to condemn them, just because I don’t see enough of who I believe I am on television?

As Miss Lawrence told Out, “The fact that, just me living in my authentic truth and being who I am, even if one person tells me that because of you I was able to find my inner being and adapt to who I was placed here to be, that does a whole lot for me. So, that within itself is the pro for me.”

And since that show there have been others.

I know of gay black men who heard of Oxygen’s The Prancing Elites Project and quickly dismissed it. They missed out. The show, which will soon premiere its second season, focuses on five gender-bending black men who simply want to do their style of dancing, J-Setting, without ridicule in their native Mobile, Alabama. What I appreciate about the show is that it allows them to simply be who they are. They’re not on a mission to uplift any particular image of gay black men; they’re just themselves, which, in its own way, is revolutionary enough.

Read the rest at Fusion.

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For all intents and purposes, Caitlyn Jenner means well. However, intent does not negate impact, thus, for all the good she has done in boosting transgender visibility this year, she often leaves a bad taste in people’s mouths with the things she says. Rightfully so.

The most recent example of this is her Time magazine interview when the subject of imaging came up. Caitlyn says that seeks to “try to project a good image for this community.” Given Jenner’s career before and after her now historic reveal this year, obviously, image would matter.

Yet, she often has a habit of taking what’s important to her and mistaking that for what should matter most.

Look no further than the follow up commentary. “I think it’s much easier for a trans woman or a trans man who authentically kind of looks and plays the role.” Then came, “I try to take [my presentation] seriously. I think it puts people at ease. If you’re out there and, to be honest with you, if you look like a man in a dress, it makes people uncomfortable.”

In response to the criticism over her comments, Jenner penned an op-ed entitled “Still So Much To Learn.” In it, Jenner writes, “What I was trying to say is that our world really is still a binary one, and that people who look ‘visibly transgender’ sometimes can struggle for acceptance and may be treated poorly by others. And while this may be true, it’s also something that needs to change.”

Jenner offered an apology, but it doesn’t make me forget what she also said in that same Time interview: “I am not a spokesperson for the trans community. I am a spokesperson for my story, and that’s all I can tell. And hopefully by telling my story, I can make people think.”

Jenner, like many who take on the benefits of spokesperson but tries to steer clear of that label when something they say stirs trouble, wants to have it both ways. None of Jenner’s controversial comments made this year soil the good she has done, but they do point to what it is increasingly interesting about her. She is someone who has spent 65 years of her life as a white man, and for more than half of that, a rich and famous white man.

There is no more privileged a life so to see someone from the most privileged group on Earth go to arguably the most marginalized one is quite the transition. And Caitlyn Jenner is right in that she will continue to make mistakes along the way. Still, when she writes about the media sometimes taking her comments out of context – which she did in her apologetic, but still somewhat defensive blog post – she needs to remember that she elected to not only live out loud, but use her platform to push for change.

So, when we hear Caitlyn Jenner reinforce the very gender binaries that she says led to past troubles, she will rightfully be called out. The same goes for her appearing on Ellen DeGeneres’ daytime talk show and articulated her purported evolved but not necessarily incredibly embracing stance on marriage equality.

Read the rest at VH1.

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I was ready to let go of Being Mary Jane midway through its second season. The show was starting to feel so draining. While I found it interesting that Mary Jane Paul was not the kind of character you rooted for – which felt unique for television, and specifically, female characters on TV – she was a little unbearable and grating to watch. As a person, she was contemptuous and judgmental, which was interesting giving her stints as a side piece (but hey, been there myself) and becoming the sperm bank bandit. The stealing of the sperm thing is where I wondered if the show became too ridiculous for me to endure.

And then something shifted. Mary Jane became more complicated, or to be blunt, more human. She still wasn’t the nicest person, but she at least had more layers to her and started to show real growth on the screen. The end result was what I feel is its finest season that concluded tonight. One that tackled race, but also suicide and relationships in real, complex ways.

I am looking forward to what comes next on Being Mary Jane, but in the meantime, congratulations to all for what’s been its best season. Now, let’s talk it out.

What would you do if your ex’s mom abruptly showed up at your doorstep?

Me, myself, me, myself, personally, I would have begrudgingly answered the door out of respect for my elders like Mary Jane did. However, I would’ve definitely let Mama Ex Bae have it for pushing her weight around where it doesn’t belong. David is gorgeous, but he let her now deceased friend show what dat mouf do on top of all of the other drama he put her through. With his mom knowing all of this, why would she take a cab to her house to plead her son’s case? And why wouldn’t she just let him do that if he really was about winning her back?

Can you think of any date worse than one at a karaoke bar?

I surely cannot think of one, but you know, if you’re into that, enjoy yourself.

“You’re the second black woman I’ve ever dated that over analyzes every move she makes at work, or her entire life, for that matter.”

So, here is the problem with White Bae: He’s so stuck in his bubble that he cannot fathom life outside it. Interracial dating can be wonderful – again, look at Mariah Carey – but not when you’re dating a white man who makes these weird generalized statements about black womanhood. I mean, if you’re on your second black woman, you shouldn’t be saying things like that.

Thankfully, Mary Jane broke it down, but when she said “I don’t like to explain” things like her kitchen, and subsequently, why she’s so supposedly analytical, I did a slow cap. That is a real concern for many black people. You want to be able to enjoy your personal relationships, particularly when so much of the outside world misjudges you.

That said, Ryan Phillippe, if you’re reading this, I would still totally date you.

“I want black men. I want black love.”

She’s going to end up with an Asian man with a fade. I’m just kidding. But you know, that was powerful to hear.

Kara, what is wrong with you?

I love Kara. She’s been my favorite character since this show started. Even so, she is on the verge of losing her job for no other reason than her pride. She got the warning from her boss about Marisol going to HR and to fix it, and what does she do? Tell her she has cute shoes and that she’s sorry she’s a fiery Latino? Oh, sis. You want to be out of a job.

I don’t like the way Marisol moves, but I will say that when you’re excited to meet someone like Kara and she not only rejects you, but diminishes your work by claiming you slept your way to the top, sometimes you have to light that ass up. Good luck with those interviews, Kara.

Read the rest at VH1.

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Many of us are pleasantly suffering under the reality that a know-nothing politician-come-lately has managed to place a death grip on the narrative of the 2016 presidential election, for no other reason than he is famous and willing to say stupid things about race.

Donald Trump’s rise from political sideshow to months-long run as frontrunner of the Republican presidential primary can be attributed to numerous factors, but if there’s been any singular driving force of his campaign, it is his stardom. Whether or not he’s successful in his bid to become the GOP nominee for president in 2016 remains to be seen. But no matter what happens, he is already a success in that he’s forced many to take his campaign seriously for far longer than they ever intended (or desired) to. As a result, I cringe at the thought that history could repeat itself sooner rather than later.

Although Kanye West has also declared himself a future presidential candidate, his inability to even commit to an album release date makes me seriously question West’s seriousness. Even if he did run, well, have you heard Kanye West talk at length lately? There’s not much to fear there.

There is, however, one other celebrity who’s since teased a run for office that I hope he seriously reconsiders.

In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Will Smith opened up about a potential political campaign, noting, “I’m a climber, so if I see a mountain, I have to climb it. I’m not a camper; I don’t like hanging in one place too long.” The walking Instagram inspirational meme went on to add, “So I think at this point, I’m elevating my ability to be useful in the world. I think that that’s what my grandmother always hoped, that I would make myself useful to people in this lifetime.”

When it comes to his chances, the Concussion actor explained: “As I look at the political landscape, I think that there might be a future out there for me. They might need me out there. This is the first year that I’ve been incensed to a level that I can’t sleep, you know? So I’m feeling that at some point, in the near future, I will have to lend my voice to the conversation in a somewhat different way.”

More recently, Smith told CBS Sunday Morning that Trump may “force” him to run. “If people keep saying all the crazy kinds of stuff they’ve been saying on the news lately about walls and Muslims, they’re going to force me into the political arena.”

I absolutely adore Will Smith and his contributions to entertainment, but when it comes to politics, the world doesn’t need a sequel to Ronald Reagan. The first one was bad enough. And while I don’t find Smith to be as awful a person as the former California governor turned two-time terrible president, he’s not remotely progressive when it comes to race. And in the next election and every one thereafter, we don’t need more Black faces in the political arena downplaying the role racism plays in our daily lives.

Indeed, in that same roundtable with The Hollywood Reporter, Smith claimed, “Everybody is prejudiced. Everybody has their life experiences that make them prefer one thing over another.” Smith elaborated further: “There’s a connotation in racism of superiority. I live with constant prejudice, but racism is actually rare.”

The problem is, Smith is playing a senseless game of semantics. Moreover, the prejudice he is speaking of from White people is fueled by racism, so the point he’s trying to make only exists within his mind. There are also far too many varied studies tied to racial discrimination on numerous fronts readily available for anyone silly enough to believe that racism is rare in American society.

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What’s Black, delusional, and in desperate need of a hole to fall into? For those of us who have read about Bill Cosby and his latest legal action, the answer is pretty clear. The legendary comedian and accused serial rapist has decided to file a countersuit against seven of his 50 victims: Tamara Green, Therese Serignese, Linda Traitz, Louisa Moritz, Barbara Bowman, Joan Tarshis, and Angela Leslie. In court documents, Cosby asserts that he “neither drugged nor sexually assaulted” the seven women. As a result, he is suing them for damages and injunctions, which include “retracting and correcting” their accusations of sexual assault. According to Cosby, their words and actions cost him

Indeed, part of the counterclaim reads as follows: “Each Counterclaim Defendant induced both NBC and Netflix to postpone or cancel their contracts with Mr. Cosby by engaging in a campaign to assassinate Mr. Cosby’s reputation and character by willfully, maliciously, and falsely accusing Mr. Cosby of multi-decade-old purported sexual misconduct in an opportunistic attempt to extract financial gain from their allegations.”

Bill Cosby’s lawyers, who right now probably are making enough to purchase a small island in billable hours, are subjected to essentially do whatever their client wants to. Bill Cosby isn’t paying me any mind, much less money, but if there’s anyone who is close to Pudding Pop and actually cares about his horrible self, do me a solid: tell that old fool to sit his silly ass the hell down somewhere.

Let’s be clear that Cosby in suing seven of his accusers, but there’s 43 more out there. Hell, by the time I finish this sentence, there could easily be six or 18 more who spring up. With that in mind, what fool in his right mind would bother suing a small fraction of his accusers?

And does he truly think they alone ruined his TV comeback? Better yet, at 78-years-old, while it’s certainly impressive that on the heels of becoming an octogenarian, why are so concerned about making a TV comeback? Can I sue Cosby’s ego for giving me a headache? Please advise.

He seems to truly believe there was so concerted effort to “take him down.” I guess that’s what happens when you settle a previous lawsuit with numerous women accusing you of the same crime. He got away with it then, but it is a new day now. Someone ring his alarm and inform him of the shift already.

Here is what Bill Cosby should do: apologize for his alleged crimes and pay some sort of restitution to ever single one of his accused victims. That won’t right the wrong he is accusing of doing, but it is something. It’s definitely more than pulling from the Petty Playbook and filing a lawsuit.

Note that I used the phrasing “should do.” Option one sounds a little too similar to right, thus, rendering it totally implausible an outcome. Obviously, crotchety Cosby is not concerned with being a decent person so there’s very little chance he acknowledges any wrongdoing. Ever.

Read the rest at VH1.

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Last week, it was confirmed that Abigail Breslin will play Baby in ABC’s Dirty Dancing TV movie musical. My immediate response was, “Oh, I’m not watching that.” However, for a person who does not like musicals but will occasionally watch one – i.e. The Wiz – I have a few suggestions on musicals that ought to happen sooner than later. Before you even say “Enough musicals!” give it up, turn it loose. They’re happening throughout 2016 and beyond. Let’s just all get a piece of the action.

SWV: The Musical

For one anyone that’s watched the new cancelled WeTV reality series, SWV Reunited, you know those women are basically three aunties who love each other but don’t always like each other. I, for one, would love a musical version of their journey complete with Coko cursing out LeeLee and Taj in song. And vice versa, of course. I also want to see them perform “Downtown,” “Can We,” and all of the other sex songs it took Coko years to start singing again after she got all extra Christian on the world.

Bebe’s Kids: The Musical

I would say the members of Mindless Behavior could star in this, but I assume, 1. they’re 45 now, 2. that wouldn’t get this green lit in 2015. Round up some badass kids who can sing or lip sync for their lives to do this. Oh, wait. I know: book those kids who play twins on Black-ish. They are everything.

Read the rest at VH1.com.

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Serena Williams is many things, but first and foremost, one of the greatest athletes of all-time. If that point isn’t clear enough, that means male or female, black or white, Serena is one of the best athletes ever. Needless to say, for many, her recognition by Sports Illustrated as sportsperson of the year feels nice albeit quite late on arrival. Nonetheless, that hasn’t stopped some people from crying foul – notably in the defense of a damn horse.

Some – majorly white, male, and seemingly bored out of their minds online – have argued that American Pharoah, horse racing’s first Triple Crown winner in 37 years deserves the honor. The horse winning the magazine’s readers’ poll for the award fuels their stance. There are so many problems with this line of thinking.

Let me count the ways.

For starters, the award is named sportsperson of the year. A horse is not a person. I’m sure, #AllMammalsMatter in select cases, but not this one. Already, sites like SBNation have mocked these people rallying for the humanity of a horse. It’s worth a chuckle, but you instantly cringe once you realize that to people like this, the value of an animal will also matter more than the life let alone the accomplishments of a Black person.

Meanwhile, Sports Illustrated’s Christian Stone was quite clear about Williams’ selection, writing: “Sports Illustrated honors her dominance in 2015, when she won 53 of her 56 matches, three of the four Grand Slam events and built the most yawning ranking points gap between her and her closest competitor in tennis history. We honor her, too, for a career of excellence, her stranglehold on the game’s No. 1 ranking and her 21 Grand Slam titles, a total that has her on the brink of Steffi Graf’s Open Era Slam record, which Williams will likely eclipse by mid-summer.”

No offense to the horse, but this is the part where everyone – horse included – ought to bow down.

But if there were not enough validation, Stone added a more honest omission about the unique barriers Williams face yet manages to excel despite them: “We are honoring Serena Williams too for reasons that hang in the grayer, less comfortable ether, where issues such as race and femininity collide with the games. Race was used as a cudgel against Williams at Indian Wells in 2001, and she returned the blow with a 14-year self-exile from the tournament. She returned to Indian Wells in ’15, a conciliator seeking to raise the level of discourse about hard questions, the hardest ones, really.”

Things beyond her control have long affected Williams: namely her race and gender. Even in the context of an honor she deserved (and again, deserved earlier than when she actually got it), racial politics came into play. Enter the Los Angeles Times, who published a story validating the opinions of morons who have ranked a horse higher than Serena Williams.

Read the rest at VH1.

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