Thursday, October 15, 2009

As the recent flare-ups in the presidential campaign have shown, America's still pretty messed up when it comes to race. Even though we're not naive enough to think such problems can be fixed by a blog post, we'd like to do our thang to bridge the divide.

That's right, like Pepe Le Pew, we're lovers, not fighters. Ergo, we'd like to tell you boys who want to be lovers a few things you've been saying to the sisters that you shouldn't.

We can't tell you the right thing to say, but Jennifer Fields and Alexis Stodghill --- two African-American women from the office who date all colors
of the rainbow -- are about to school the men of this world (white, black, Asian and Inuit) on the worst things you can say to a black woman.

This advice won't help you get a date with Beyoncé Knowles or Kelly Rowland, but at least you won't get a drink thrown in your face.

10. "I was raised by black people." (If your nanny or butler was black when you were growing up, you do not pass as an honorary black person.)

9. "Black women are so sexy." (You may think this is a compliment, but it's just another form of stereotyping or fetishizing African-American women.)

8. "Can I touch your hair?" (Don't ask anything about the hair, or whether you can touch it. Such an exchange will never end well.)

7. "I only date black women." (You think you're going to impress her because you're down, but saying that just makes it seem like black women are a "type.")

6. "You're the black Audrey Hepburn." (Don't tell a women she's the black version of a particular white woman. Men do not say to a white woman, "You're the white Condoleezza Rice.")

5. "I don't see any difference between the races." (You may think you're Ghandi, but you're not.)

4. "It's not like you're the first black woman I've dated." (Yeah, that comes off as creepy fetishizing, too.)

3. "You look like En Vogue." (It's never a smart idea to compare one woman to a group of women who all look very different, no matter their color.)

2. "Black women are so much cooler with sex than white women." (If you think implying black women are looser than white women is gonna get you some, you're wrong.)

1. "I'm voting for Obama." (Millions of people are voting for Obama. It doesn't make you that cool.)

Are there other things that should never be said? Let us know.

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