Now it’s my turn to weigh in (excuse the pun) on the Gabourey Sidibe controversy (Cue Prince).
When I initially thought about writing about this post I was going to take this whole approach of Black is Beautiful and mainstream American doesn’t understand that beauty comes in all forms. Especially after my friend told me that Acai Berry offered Gabby a good workout plan using their product. Of course a lucrative deal to be their spokes person would come after. Can you imagine how many gastric bypass contemplating, send me to boot camp please, subway sandwich eating, help me do it Oprah folks would be clamoring to use Acai Berry? Kiss the intern who brainstormed that idea, we’ve all seen Gabby’s before shot, and thought wow!
And Howard Stern’s comments got me to thinking about the well meaning-ness of several white folk. Well meaning-along the lines of enslaving people around the world to bring Christianity to the heathen. That turned out great didn’t it? It’s not like Christianity should be introduced to others and it’s not like we don’t know that Gabby is a big girl. I think most of us who saw her outside of her role in Precious thought “wow” that wasn’t a suit. I know I had these thoughts, as a chick who orders $5 footlongs sans the mayo and thought about enlisting in the service to shed some pounds.
But the rub has got me two ways. The first is the assumption that Gabby isn’t happy. Who can say that other than her? And the second is the assumption that Gabby’s self confidence and esteem somehow overrides everything the medical world has told us about health. I guess I don’t like how all of this has gotten tangled and twisted together to equal that Gabby is fat and therefore she is unhappy and unhealthy. I think the latter is definitely true…but the first remains to be seen in Ms. Sidibe’s autobiography. I am sick of mainstream American spectulating on Gabby’s outlook on life and then justifying their often cruel and rude statements on the fact that they are concerned for her health. Pish posh-and the civil war was about freeing the slaves right?
Maybe I am going out on this limb alone, but in the formative years it’s pretty hard for a little Black girl to feel beautiful in America. I know that it bothered me when the white girls in my class would comment on how cute the little braids and animal barrettes in my hair where. And even though their statements where complimentary, it was how they said it, or the fact that they even needed to say it that bothered me. And so I wonder how these uncomplimentary comments will affect Gabby.
I want her to feel good about herself, think she’s beautiful, be excited about her success. But I also want her to be healthy too. Now if only mainstream America could learn how to express the same concern without killing her esteem in the process.
See You In Seven
SO LONG, FAREWELL...
The View From Here will conclude on Friday, October 1, our third year anniversary. We would like to spend this month thanking all of our readers, followers, haters, visitors, family, friends, and fans for your continued support, encouragement, and comments over these past few years. Thanks y'all!
-The Five Spot