Play It Cool This Weekend Reading List

Featuring: the ways in which white women are trifling as hell, a look back at 20 years of a problematic fave, a meditation on Black suicide, more erasure of queer black men, and ABC's The Bachelorette as sci-fi.  

By Wallace Mack

White Women Drive Me Crazy

Aisha Mirza, The BuzzFeed Reader

"White women are so dangerous because they’re allowed to be so soft — innocent until proven innocent." Beginning with her experience as a Brown woman in a mostly white yoga space, Aisha Mirza takes the reader on a poetic reflection of white womanhood and how it more often than not works in opposition to women of color. This piece is not for the faint of heart— she really takes it there, but I imagine that it is a breath of fresh air for women of color everywhere. Read and reflect. 

What Does It Mean to Be a #CarefreeBlackBoy?

Kevin C. Quin, Zine 

If you know me, you know there's nothing that I love more than the #carefreeblackboy conversation. My only critique of the movement, however, is the many ways in which it continues to exclude and erase queer black men who, quite frankly, taught us all to be #carefree. Kevin Quin uses his platform here to explore the violence that has been inflicted upon queer black men who have been abused in our communities for simply wanting to exist. Appropriating the aesthetic of men that we continue to disparage does not a revolution make. 

On Edward Crawford, Mental Health and the Black Community - Reimagining Black Suicide

Myles Johnson, Essence Magazine

This is important because suicide and suicide ideation do not always manifest themselves in the same way. In a cultural moment where so many important conversations are happening at once, we have to be careful to ensure that spreading awareness is never stagnant and that the conversations are ever evolving.

The Bachelorette Is the Best Science Fiction on Television

Kevin Nguyen, GQ

Kevin Nguyen argues here that The Bachelorette might actually be more symbolic than we actually imagine. In a world where women are the constant victims of abuse by romantic and domestic partners, a hit tv show where a woman (a BLACK woman this season) is able to choose from a selection of suitors without the imminent threat of danger, might be just as much sci-fi as it is reality tv. 

Martin Lawrence’s ‘Martin,’ 20 years later

Justin Tinsley, The Undefeated

Those who are Martin superfans will really enjoy this deep dive and reflection on the show 20 years since it's debut. While I appreciate that the piece is well-researched and did not shy away from mentioning the sexual assault claims brought against Martin Lawrence by Tisha Campbell during the show's prime, I do believe that it missed an opportunity to dig a bit deeper into how the culture of Martin was a breeding ground for those kinds of things. Martin will certainly go down as one of the culture's "problematic faves", laden with issues like transphobia and misogynoir and I think it would have been worthwhile exploring here.  Instead of approaching with a critical lens, the piece focuses a bit more on the show's cult following and cannon level comedy, which is, by and large, the exact reason critically critiquing the show is so impossible in the mainstream now. 

& a weekend feeling for the people below!