I’m not a Evangelical Christian GOP candidate so I’m down with science. If people spend their lives studying rocks and fossils and whatnot in order to give me the kind of information I can retain well enough to kick ass on Jeopardy? I thank them.
But something has happened in the scientific community. Clearly we’ve got a pretty good handle on the biggies. We’ve exposed Pluto as a sham planet. We’ve convinced everyone (well…not Sherri Shepherd) that the world is round. Some people just aren’t ever going to believe in evolution (see again: Sherri Shepherd), so we’ve got to move on from that. So whats a researcher sitting on tons of endowment money to do?
INT. RESEARCH FACILITY – NIGHT
Scientist1: So…what should we do now?
Scientist2: I have no idea man. That Pluto thing wore me out. *flicks on tv*
Scientist1: Wait. This thing gets cable!? I thought it was just a big monitor. Stop hogging the cheetos, bro.
Scientist2: Sorry, my brother. You got to get your own. *munches* so…wait. What is this?
*voice on television* I don’t keep up with the Joneses! I am the Joneses! *snap snap, sassy hair flip*
Scientist1: Whats a Nene?
And thus, a new form of research was born. Simply put: Um. So. Like. Whats up with these black chicks? They are EVERYWHERE all of a sudden.
Last year I probably gave myself permanent brain damage slamming my head into my desk after reading multiple studies and opinion pieces about black women. Why do black women get married? Why do they wear natural hair? Why do they straighten their hair? Why don’t black women get married? Why don’t black women marry white men? Why are black women abandoning black men? Who gon’ check her, boo? Black women,why you so ugly? And so on. With the latest entry popping up on my twitter feed yesterday.
I’m tired of it.
So, as I do, I took to twitter to vent my frustrations, and offer helpful suggestions to writers and researchers on how to better target their research:
Dear researchers with clearly ample time and resources: stop studying black women. We’re mammals. kthx.
If you’re that bored, please devote your energy to something useful. Like…why does Dunkin Donuts coffee taste so good?
#thingsyoucanresearchotherthanblackwomen Why do birds suddenly appear, every time you are near? #thingsyoucanresearchotherthanblackwomen How much wood would a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck wood?
Do we have a definitive answer on how many licks it takes to get to the center of a toostie pop?
#thingsyoucanresearchotherthanblackwomen #thingsyoucanresearchotherthanblackwomen Who is funding all these bullshit studies
How exactly did Adele set fire to the rain? Is Hogwarts real?
Heidi and Seal. WHYYYYYYYYYYYYY??????????!?!?!?!?!? *sobs into my pillow*
Scale of 1 to Michael Corleone how pissed is RayJ that Kim got rich off literally riding his dick?
Jokes aside, I fail to ever really grasp what the point of these studies are. But what it feels like is a way to “other” us as a group, with “science” (that term used EVER so loosely in this context) to back it up. Yes, since the dawn of man we’ve all been poking each other and trying to figure out what makes the other tick. I get that. What I object to is the constant insistence that because I’m black and female, my motivations have some special secret code. My brain isn’t powered by melanin. Yes, there are specific things in my life that are shaped by the way I was raised, but the “black experience” isn’t all encompassing. My “black experience” is informed and impacted by different things than even other people in my immediate family. We’re not a monolith. We’re not the same. We have common experiences that bond us, and circumstances that divide us.
And by “we” I mean humans.
(In case you aren’t sure. Yes, black women are humans. Promise)