It’s kind of ironic that three years after launching this blog, I’m returning to a subject that was the topic of one of my very first posts – hair braiding. Let me cut to the chase, over the weekend, Rachel Dolezal participated in a hair braiding workshop… in Dallas of all places, and I have many thoughts.
First of all, there are at least 100,000 black women in Dallas, so with a very low estimate of 1 in every 1,000 women knowing how to braid, there are probably 100 highly qualified braiders in the city. To confirm, a Google Maps search of braiding salons in Dallas brought up at least 80 different options, and that doesn’t account for all the people working out of their kitchens or their boyfriend’s garages.
Which is why I am so completely tickled by the absolute gall of Isis Brantley, who decided to book/invite Rachel Dolezal, the Ryan Lochte meets Kardashians of black womanhood, to speak at the Braid on Economic Liberty March & Rally on Saturday. Sister Isis doesn’t know how to ask Siri to search something for her on Google really quickly, because she claims she didn’t know anything about Rachel Dolezal and her controversies.
MA’AM. You booked a white lady who pretended to be black and is now braiding hair because clearly she hadn’t perfected her cornbread and collard greens game well enough to open up a soul food kitchen? Sis Isis. People these days are googling their Uber drivers, while we still can. #IGOOGLEEVERYONE. Just to be safe. So I’m not buying the “I ain’t know she was controversial and a lie” story, mk? Just say you wanted some drama & publicity for your event.
Second of all, somebody needs to tell Rachel that her braids are starting to affect her hairline. #Teamnoedges has never won a competition. You don’t need to be without edges to continue to try (and fail!) to pass for black. Black women have moved beyond edgelessness, just like we’ve moved past gold lipstick and matted weaves.
Thirstly (yes, this is spelled correctly, because thirst for attention is the only reason behind these shenanigans), I have NEVER in all my braiding experiences, had a braider who had french tips. How are you going to finish a full head of Janet Jackson braids if the kanekalon keeps getting pulled by your acrylic?
So I call BS Rachel. You might be able to braid three strands of hair together, but I can also use a curling iron – you don’t see me up at Rebecca’s Beach Waves for Spring Break convention leading a workshop on how to curl white women’s hair.
Rachel needs to give it UP. And black people… whomever is amongst the 4,971 Facebook fans she has… need to stop encouraging her. This is no longer cute. I’m tired. As my folks would say, I ham tiyad.
Last but not least, imma really need you to not have a basic gmail email address with the numbers that correspond to your birth year. Like FRFR, you need at the bare minimum a firstname.lastname@example.org email address. That is all.