I want to start off by addressing the men who don’t see a problem with doing the “nay nay” in public. I only have one thing to say to you pussies: STOP! I have tried to ignore the flamboyant touchdown celebrations in professional football (that applies to you too, Odell Beckham Jr.).
I have tried to make sense of Jaden Smith’s and ASAP Rocky’s fascination with women’s clothing. I am still coming to terms with the emerging presence of homosexuality in hip hop. I may never fully understand why skinny jeans are so popular among young black males (and some old).
And speaking of young black males, I know plenty of them who could write an entire book on the do’s and dont’s of fashion, but they wouldn’t know where to start if they had to replace a flat tire or repair a leaky faucet.
What ever happened to the days when black boys would spend Saturday afternoon roughhousing during a game of tackle football? Oh that’s right…the average teenager is too busy posing in front of the mirror (like a bitch), preparing to take another selfie.
Even as adults, black males have veered from the testosterone-fueled machismo of previous decades. These days, the world of salacious gossip isn’t dominated by women as it once was. There are just as many gossip artists of the male persuasion (ahem, Charlamagne Tha God) who delight in the pastime of “throwing shade” at other people and feeding into rumors. If I recall correctly, as a child, I would hear the women in my family exchange gossip while the men gathered in the living room to play cards or watch sporting events on TV. Now that I’m older and I occasionally spend time with other families, I’ve witnessed gossip sessions unfold between groups of finger-snapping, gum-popping, neck-rolling “queens” while their uncles, brothers and cousins pile into a different room to cheer on muscle-bound behemoths who “nay nay” every time they score a touchdown or sink a jump shot (very suspect).
Perhaps it all started when Ja Rule and 50 cent began singing love ballads in the early 2000’s, or maybe it happened the day Kevin Hart slipped into a dress for a comedy skit, making him the most recent addition to an extensive list of African American male entertainers who have emasculated themselves for others to laugh. I’m still struggling to pinpoint the exact moment when we decided that blonde hair and body-piercings (ahem, Chris Brown) were acceptable additions to a man’s appearance?
I pondered these questions one evening after watching the reunion episode of Love and Hip Hop Hollywood this season. “Why are these niggas [the male cast members of the show] behaving like schoolgirls,” I wondered aloud. Then it dawned on me. For years black males have been reared by single mothers or grandmothers, each saddled with the burden of performing dual parenting roles. Without the presence of a consistent father figure, these boys consequently stumble into manhood without being prepared. Others develop girlish tendencies that intensify as they progress in age (ahem, Kanye West).
Sisters, lower your weapons, I’m not holding you responsible for the castration of black males. It’s not your fault that after giving birth, the fathers of your children aren’t performing their parental duties. However, we can’t ignore the pink elephant in the room. If mastering the “nay nay” is more important to our black boys than learning how to put on a necktie or balance a checkbook, then what can we expect when it’s time for them to step up as men? Here’s a list to prove that black men have become toilet-paper soft.
2. Skinny Jeans, Women’s Clothing, and Loud, Outrageous Colors
3. The “Nay Nay” and Other Flamboyant Dances
4. Blonde Hair and Body Piercings
5. Selfies (the only photo a man should be capturing is of a woman’s ass while he’s hitting it from the back).
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