Friday, August 1, 2014

Published 9:39 PM by with 0 comment

Fight Night

Yes, We Rise|  Fight Night (Stephen A. Smith vs. ESPN)
The knock out heard ‘round the world wasn’t Ali vs. Frasier, but ESPN vs. Stephen A. Smith.

I have a love hate relationship with Stephen A. Some days I love him – his suits are crisp, he usually has a valid point, he argues with the best of them; then, I don’t like him. He appears to be arrogant. He seems to know it all – and then some... but he’s an HBCU grad – a special HBCU, which is close to my heart, WSSU... couple that with the recent initiation into my favorite fraternity, Omega Psi Phi, I try, I try, I TRY to love him every single day. Ours is a relationship in turmoil. He doesn’t even know. But I was mad when they suspended him.

In recent weeks, I have spoken about DV and how I think it is horrible. Even more recent, everyone has been speaking about the NFL Player who knocked out his then finance... and Stephen A loosely commented on this. On the record: I agree with Stephen A. We all know that woman... the woman who likes high drama. She likes to fight. She likes to argue. She is very slick with comments – and openly belittles her man. She is almost disrespectful. In her presence, we (other women) cringe. She has been depicted in several movies, sitcoms, rom-coms - the list goes on and on. We. Hate. Her. Seriously.

This woman knowingly hits men, calls the police and waits. She watches gleefully with anticipation as the police takes the man away – in some states for 72 hours. In this single move, she has jeopardized his job; his life. He may have a record after this. He may lose his job. He may never be the same again. We. Hate. Her. Seriously.

When Stephen A. suggested women provoke men, he (to me) didn’t mean it in the traditional DV circumstances. Stephen A was talking about ‘her’.  I recall being in elementary school and going home crying to my daddy about a boy who hit me. My father told me, “Boys shouldn’t hit girls, but don’t come home crying again. Slap him. Kick him where it hurts... But don’t darken this door again crying.” The next day, I waited – he provoked, and I slapped him. I mean I took all of my 60lbs and rocked him solid up side his head. He ran off crying. I felt WONDERFUL! I had defeated the giant who’d haunted me for several days.

Amazingly, I became the giant... I walked the playground looking for the hurt, wounded, the disgruntled. If they were hurt, I was their avenger. This didn’t stop for years. At the entrance of middle school, my father had another talk with me: “Sweetie, you may want to reconsider open hand slapping boys. They are now bigger and stronger than you are. If he hits you, defend yourself, but do not provoke or put him in a situation that forces him to hit you. Don’t be that woman. If you’re hurt, get help. But do not provoke.” I was confused. For several years, I was the shero – the Wonder Woman of Elementary – I helped the helpless... He continued, “All boys don’t have guidance or control of their tempers. If you embarrass them, they will embarrass you. BE nice, don’t start it. If it comes to you, end it. Everyone hasn’t been taught not to hit girls.” That was the best piece of advice I’ve gotten. Weeks into middle school, “she” was identified. She was loud, rude and offensive. She walked up on a boy and slapped him. When the Principal came, she cried and cried and of course, the boy got in trouble. I was horrified.

Yes, We Rise|  Fight Night (Stephen A. Smith vs. ESPN)
Over the course of my life, I have seen this play out several times. When I sought a divorce attorney, one told me, “Make him hit you. Then we have a case. When he hits you, call the police – act afraid – you’ll get the house and he will pay.” I couldn’t. I have watched white women play this role at work: “He offended me ... now I feel threatened.”

As a woman raising a boy into a man, I must teach him to not hit. Already, we have had trying times. All who know me, know The Boy is huge. At 3, he, being playful, caused another 3 year old to have a concussion. It was a girl. Another time, he hit a girl back. As I scolded him, he cried, “She was hurting me!” When I went to the conference, I understood. The girl was bigger and stronger than he was. In that moment, again I understood – women should not hit.

The lesson in this is Stephen A. is right. Women should not provoke men to hit, fight, or anger. Women should teach their girl children this lesson. When the police show up, rarely do they seek the woman as the wrong doer. Women know this. Men know this. As a woman, I want women to stop. I want women to teach their girls it is wrong. I want women to teach their boys in dating if you encounter this type of woman, leave – you can’t fix her. I want women to return to ladylike stances in public and walk away. I also want men, especially those in the public eye, to choose better women.

Deeper than that, this is about race. A black man offended the precious white woman... In his commentary, Stephen A offended so many women. Women wrote in. I was appalled and disturbed at the response. First, so many wrote about this, but not the Mark Cuban comments. Then as I began to watch the outtakes and listen – really listen, I understood this was not about Stephen A offending the masses, but the one portion of the population that matters most– a white woman who will ‘never feel clean again’... that was it. When she said that, she sealed his fate. ESPN rendered a longer suspension than the person of topic got from the NFL. I want people to understand everything in America is about race. This is not about DV. This is about offending a white woman.

. . . free as I want to be . . .
Goal D Locs


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