She’s bossy! She’s mean! She’s demanding! She’s defensive against injustice. Intolerant to disrespect. Can’t forget that she’s belligerent. She’s arrogant! She’s argumentative! She’s hateful. Just plain old ANGRY!!!
Recently, I experienced one of the most unjust situations in my life! Long story short, I’d been campaigning for a couple of weeks for a university voted position. Although my race was fair and clean, unfortunately I did not receive the votes necessary to advance to the next round. It was like the Lord took a load off of me! Finally, people could see me “lose” something and not put me on such a high pedestal. I was content with my loss and continuing on with my life… that is until I learned of the deceit that had occurred. The fact that the elected candidates had been announced hours before the elections were over, led me to believe that foul play had occurred. This meant that the election was invalid and the chances of a reelection were high and necessary. So I thought… But after I contacted the election moderators and attempted to help solve the case I was informed that the evidence wasn’t valid until the accused had come forth. I had meeting after meeting, pleading for the rights of the other candidates who too had clean and honest campaigns and were cheated out of their opportunity to win. But…
No one listened…
No one valued the evidence…
No one seemed to care that the rights of individuals had been taken away…
And there I was…. An “Angry Black Woman”
Making a big deal out of nothing! Fighting for nothing. Valuing nothing… Belittled and ashamed!
I’d never felt more belittled in my entire life. I was made to feel as though I’d done something wrong by speaking up, by asking questions, and by questioning the validity of the elections based on the evidence. But none of that mattered because all I was, was an ANGRY BLACK WOMAN!
Let’s be clear here, I am not asking for a pity party nor am I attempting to have your remorse for my loss. As I’ve explained, that has nothing to do with it, at all. Actually, I would like to enlighten you to a truth that most women of the African-American Race face on a regular basis, in an attempt to make you aware and to hopefully alleviate these issues.
I remember working a job where the district manager used profanity towards me at work. Although I’d exceeded all of the necessary requirements of my job, he found it appropriate to talk to me using harsh language and derogatory terms. I quit on the spot! I explained that I would not tolerate such disrespect and that I could find employment elsewhere. I understood my rights and stood my ground. The harassment charges that he could’ve faced had I filed a suit against him made him quick to apologize and offer my job back. As a black woman, because I spoke up in my own defense and clearly stated my tolerance for respect, I was deemed as “ANGRY”.
I plan to become a serial entrepreneur, owning a wide variety of businesses across the world and be a BOSS (“Bad Mamma Jamma” Overseeing her Self-Success). However, I’ve been told in present day that I can be “bossy”. According to Webster’s Dictionary, bossy is defined as being fond of giving orders or domineering. WOW! Even in present day instances where even I am “The Boss” or the leader, I seem to have a target on me that makes me appear domineering? Hmm… something isn’t adding up? Maybe its because I am Black that my authority is questioned? Is it because I speak well? Maybe its because I carry myself professionally! I GOT IT… Maybe its because my confidence is on “fleek” and it exudes in whatever I do…. NOPE! Its just because I’m ANGRY!
Bossy! Bitchy! Arrogant! Belligerent! Hateful! Demanding! Argumentative! Mean! ANGRY!
Can’t be a leader, then I’m BOSSY!
Can’t say no, then I’m MEAN!
Can’t demand my respect, then I’m BITCHY!
Can’t be too confident, then I’m ARROGANT!
Can’t be too direct, then I’m BELLIGERENT!
Can’t have my own opinion, then I’m ARGUMENTATIVE!
Over everything… I’m ANGRY!
It is not fair that as an African-American woman that I am penalized for having the same drive, ambition, and determination as women of other races. It is not fair to be perceived as ANGRY whenever I speak up for myself or for others; when I carry myself with class and demand respect; because I’d rather read a book than to watch a reality show; because I’m interested in advancing to becoming the C.E.O. rather than the assistant; or because I am able to speak intellectually and I’m not afraid to compete with the best of them.
So Yes, I AM A.N.G.R.Y.!
I Am Ambitious! In all that I do I am determined and motivated.
I AM Notable and Noticeable! I am worthy of being noted for my acts and I am too accomplished to go unnoticed.
I Am Genteel! I am polite and proper.
I AM Respectable and Ravishing! I carry myself with class and dignity and I have a delightful presence.
And I am Yielding! I bare great fruits in my work and I am prosperous in all that I put my mind to.
If having enough respect for myself and my future as well as being confident in the way that I present myself makes me ANGRY, I will take it! Ladies, it is important that we chose not to let negative terms like this make us feel negatively. Instead, we must embrace the hate and let it bring even more fuel to our fire.
People will think about it twice the next time they call me an.. “ANGRY BLACK WOMAN”
By: Verinique D. Bailey, The V. In Virtue