‘Pretty for a black girl’ isn’t a compliment

Nana Tutu

I never understood why people feel the need to put others in separate categories. Especially black people, why do we need to be separated from the rest of society?

The other day I was walking down the hall, minding my own business when a guy comes up to me and says, “You’re pretty for a black girl.” Sure it seems like a compliment at first, but when you think about it, it’s actually very insulting.

I cannot tell you how many times I’ve heard, “I mean for a black girl she’s cute,” when talking about a pretty girl. Basically what I get from that is, “Black girls are ugly, but I mean she’s a pretty one,” and that is very disrespectful. 

“For a black girl.” What does that mean? I don’t exactly know, but I believe it means that sure, we are pretty, but just not pretty enough to be put in a group with girls with a lighter complexion or of other races.

Why can’t we all just be beautiful together? Why can’t we all just be with each other? Why can’t we all just love each other?

It really throws me off when people say things like that. I do NOT like black girls being segregated into separate groups because of the color of our skin or how dark our skin is. Instead of being one of the prettiest black girls, why can’t I just be one of the prettiest girls?

I know people mean no harm with these comments and they think it is not offensive, but just put yourself in our shoes. It is like we’re being ranked lower when we know we are just as high as everyone else. I know people do not mean it in that sense, but we’re all girls and we’re all beautiful.

So girls: no one cares if you’re black, white, yellow, blue or even green! Green girls are just as beautiful as blue girls. All girls are beautiful in all ways.

So next time you happen to come across a gorgeous black girl, make sure to let her know that she’s a beautiful girl, with no other modifiers needed.

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