*I recently asked my girlfriend to comment on the latest drama surrounding Tyrese Gibson‘s self-recorded tirade aimed at black women, who ironically represent the larger share of his fanbase (there may not be a greater example in history of someone literally biting the hand(s) that feed(s) him).
“That n*gga always thinks he has something profound to say,” she lamented with a groan. “He’s married to some Barbie doll now – you wouldn’t even know that she was black unless she walked up to you and said she was.
“That girl [his wife] is bi-racial and probably doesn’t need to put relaxer in her hair to make it straight, or she doesn’t need to make her nose or lips smaller to fit a standard of beauty that’s been imposed on black women for centuries. He’s part of the problem. Now, all of a sudden he wants black women to go natural – as if we care about his opinion or his marriage. F*ck him.
She added, “He’s from Watts [Los Angeles], but the girls in his videos fit the description of the women that he recorded himself condemning – full of plastic, covered in make-up, hair weaved down to their backs, and racially ambiguous. He’s the type of n*gga who likes to hear himself talk, even when he’s not saying anything worth listening to”
In the recording, Tyrese makes references to “deceptive” beauty methods that help to alter (and sometimes dramatically enhance) the female form.
“Your weaves aren’t fooling men,” he declares on Instagram.
One might speculate that Tyrese’s trashtalking was meant to serve two distinct purposes: the first of which may have actually been a genuine (yet haphazard) attempt by him to discourage women from obstructing their natural beauty with plastic surgery and cosmetic products created in a science lab. This, at first glance, seems like a good-natured pep talk from a concerned member of the opposite sex.
But if you look deeper, like I tend to do (occasionally to a fault), then you may interpret Tyrese’s soliloquy as a mean-spirited sucker punch to those who likely saw him as one of the few black men left in Hollywood willing to protect the honor and dignity of black women – a demo that has supported him unconditionally over a career that dates back to the mid-1990s.
Tyrese’s ill-advised comments have ignited a firestorm of outrage, causing his detractors — many of whom presumably originated as devout fans — to accuse him of body shaming, engaging in traditions of sexism, and perhaps more disturbing, promoting a viewpoint that further marginalizes black women.
My girlfriend — whose curvy, milk-chocolate physique already appears to be surgically enhanced (God just doesn’t make bodies like her’s too often), selected a much simpler term to describe the newly infamous Tyrese: “dumbass.”
She also had a few choice words for me, the putz who almost ruined a night out on the town by asking her to comment on a man she apparently can’t stand.
The original plan was for us to enjoy a good meal together, but before we could exit the car and reserve a table, I detonated a bomb named Tyrese that nearly destroyed any chance of me getting some booty once we returned home. The anticipatory twitch in my jeans was quickly replaced with fear and bewilderment at how pissed off she became.
In retrospect, asking for my lady’s opinion about this matter was a mood killer of the highest order. I’ll take the “L” on that one.
However, as a black man, it disturbs me to see how easily black women have turned on Tyrese seemingly overnight. Granted, even I, a professional bullshit artist, cannot rationalize the foolish drivel pouring out of Tyrese’s mouth in that recording. After hearing it, I remember thinking to myself: this dude must have forgotten that white women popularized going under the knife to undo Mother Nature’s handiwork (they and The Kardashians).
I predicted that he would be taken to the cleaners for his ill-conceived remarks, but I didn’t anticipate a full scale attack from an enormous assemblage of enraged critics and female journalists (I’m partially exaggerating, but only for dramatic effect).
Ladies, you musn’t forget that regardless of his foibles, Tyrese has indeed been one of maybe a handful in music to openly acknowledge and celebrate the many complexities of black women. If your memory is a bit foggy, pop in one of his old CD’s and listen to him go on and on about how much he adores you all.
The man also gives back to his community, Watts, on a very regular basis, and over the years, he’s carried himself with admirable class and professionalism. Unlike the considerably more erratic Chris Brown, who apparently can do no wrong in the eyes of his fanbase, Tyrese’s only crime against women, thus far, is the fact he retains an inflated view of his intelligence.
As time wages forward, it’s conceivable that Tyrese will move on from the backlash sparked by his recent video. He may even lay another verbally-insensitive egg via social media. If that happens, ladies, don’t allow his words to bring out the worst in you. Fighting fire with fire isn’t always a sign of strength – it often reflects the opposite.
The Black Hat is written by Southern California based Cory A. Haywood, a freelance writer and expert on Negro foolishness. Contact him via: [email protected] and/or visit his blog: www.theblackhat.social, or send him a message on Twitter: @coryahaywood