Originally published on October 13, 2009 on Examiner.com.
Removed from site on October 15, 2009. CENSORSHIP
UNFORTUNATELY, THE QUOTES USED ARE FROM MY OWN DAUGHTERS.
Little black girls want “good hair”
“I want to be a white woman when I grow up ‘cause they’ve got long straight hair…,” from the lips of a 5-year-old African American female.
It begins early, young black girls and boys learn the societal images of beauty. The looser your curl, the more attractive you are. Girls want long, straight flowing hair. If not naturally, then manufactured. Boys wear “do rags” to get those waves coming in nicely.
To get the desired look of the western standards of beauty, black hair is trained by repeated pressing with a hot comb, by use of relaxers, texturizers or some other altering device or chemical. And so the internal battle ensues. Children are struggling with accepting themselves as they are and conforming to what someone else led them to believe is “good”.
As children grow they are still striving for what they have been taught is beautiful and acceptable by other’s standards. “I don’t know what to do with it,” a frustrated 14-year-old girl expresses concerning her defeatist attitude towards her natural.
She doesn’t like double-strand twists, she doesn’t like cornrows, she doesn’t like braided extensions, she doesn’t want locs, she doesn’t like ‘fros, or knots or anything close to those styles. What she wants is long, straight hair flowing down her back. What would make her happiest and more confident is a relaxer and a hair weave combination. Then she will be beautiful.
It’s not true girls and boys. You were beautiful from the moment you were born.
Chris Rock’s documentary “Good Hair” opened in select theaters on October 9, 2009.
Releasing in theaters nationwide next weekend.
Currently playing in the following theaters near Philadelphia:
Regal Cinemas Commerce Center 18 (40.9 mi from Philly)
2399 Us Highway 1
North Brunswick, NJ 08902
AMC Loews New Brunswick Theatre (46.7 mi from Philly)
17 US Highway #1
New Brunswick, NJ 08902
Regal Cinemas Hadley Center 11 (48.8 mi from Philly)
1000 Corporate Ct
South Plainfield, NJ 07080
Read more information on this topic by Daily News Columnist Jenice M. Armstrong and Inquirer Fashion Writer Elizabeth Wellington.