Gabby Douglas's Hairy Situation

We African-Americans are our own worst enemies. We do a better job of tearing ourselves down than anyone else. Consider the case of 16-year-old Gabrielle "Gabby" Douglas, who last month became the first African-American female gymnast to win an individual gold medal at the Olympics. Instead of applauding her phenomenal accomplishment, black women bloggers went on Twitter to talk trash about her hair being unkempt.

ESPN, the Daily Beast, and USA Today all reported on the debate. Tennis great Serena Williams even defended Gabby, saying, "It's ridiculous. So ridiculous. The tweets were absurd."

"Why hasn't anyone tried to fix Gabby Douglas's hair?" said one. "Gabby Douglas's hair is ratch," read another. MisDOScentavos, whose blog is called "Boy Is a White Racist Word," added, "Gabby Douglas gotta do something with this hair," adding that the post came from a "place of rage, disappointment, and aesthetic displeasure."

After the Olympics, Douglas got a Hollywood makeover courtesy of Essence magazine. It gave credence to the people hating on her hair. She didn't need it. Her hair looked more relaxed than ever when she led the Pledge of Allegiance to start the second night of the Democratic National Convention last week.

This is stupid. Consider the racism Douglas put up with when she was training at Excalibur Gymnastics in her hometown of Virginia Beach. In an interview with Vanity Fair, Douglas recalled one employee saying her nose looked flat, and a white teammate called her a "slave." (Excalibur's owner and her ex-teammates have denied the accusations.)

The African-Americans who badmouthed Gabby's hair should be using Twitter to come to her defense.

Back in the day, when Muhammad Ali was dominating the boxing ring and Arthur Ashe was winning Grand Slam tennis titles, African-Americans rallied around them.

We shouldn't allow Gabby Douglas, a true hero, to be demeaned. She should be honored in gyms and on street corners throughout America. With the election of another black hero, Barack Obama, just weeks away, Gabby is an important symbol — not someone to be criticized for her hair.

Follow Luke on Twitter: @unclelukereal1.

 
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14 comments
hurricaneken51
hurricaneken51

@unclelukereal1 good article Luke... Why can't Americans respect each others opinion?

skeetmoses
skeetmoses

@unclelukereal1 that is so true Luke, it was shameful the way they dogged Gabby. We have got to stop the tearing down of each other.

ByronGee2
ByronGee2

@unclelukereal1 please write about the cronyism with the U's D coordinator.

eclomb
eclomb

You are one of them . You call a real american hero Condoleza Rice an uncle TOM. I'm proud of what Gaby Douglas acomplished and I'm not black.THE COLOR OF THE SKIN DO NOT MATTER. Stop talking about racism you are more racist than anybody else.  Obama is not a black hero. It is a very bad president that should never be re-elected again. It is a shame for this country regardless of his color.

Darkknight_06
Darkknight_06

@unclelukereal1 Feldman is reporting that that snake Shapiro is pissed that UM hasn't been punished yet and he's now throwing out more bs

email336699
email336699

Luther you talk about black people tearing each other down and then you go and call Condi Rice an Uncle Tom.  You're a loudmouthed hypocritical moron.

unclelukereal1
unclelukereal1

@ByronGee2 no no no then all people going to say is I'm upset Randy got fire

unclelukereal1
unclelukereal1

@Darkknight_06 something has been done Miami told all the players they had to get out think about it who's left.

liberalsunite_attheo
liberalsunite_attheo

 @email336699

 What a great reply email336699. Of course he's a hypocrite; he's a typical racist liberal. Whenever someone doesn't believe the same way he does then he calls them a racist . I bet not all Black people rallied around Ali when he left the country to avoid the draft; I bet there were many young Black men who did get drafted and I imagine they were disgusted with his being a coward. Luther you stand up for free speech so much but when you don't agree with someone they're an Uncle Tom? Any chance you will go back to Jamaica permanently?

ByronGee2
ByronGee2

@unclelukereal1 gotcha....but it's true:)

 
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