“And when he get on, he leave your a– for a white girl.” – Kanye West
We’ve all heard the controversial Kanye lyric, and some Black women have yet to forgive him for somewhat putting into practice what he preached. Nevertheless, more than decade after “Goldigger” was released, such a line leaves me questioning just how accurate his way of thinking was. While we’ve witnessed some Black men boldly support these exact sentiments (including Kanye), is this really an accurate trend in our culture? Are we misconstruing the dating habits of famous men with those of everyday men of color? Do black men consciously seek to date outside their race for potential partners? Do women? More importantly, if everyone is looking outside the race for spouses, what happened to the idea of “Black love”? Does it even exist anymore?
Of course we still have our relationship goal go-tos. Barack and Michelle, Denzel and Pauletta, Bey and Jay and our newest obsession, Sterling K. Brown and Ryan Michelle Bathe. But outside of the selected few, how often are we all publicly seeking, loving and celebrating the Black woman and man in union?
We see the celebrations of well-known Black men for their selection of racially ambiguous women. And if they haven’t already chosen a white woman, a common replacement is often foreign, exotic and well, anybody who is not a Black woman. Some have gone as far to say that they do not even date Black women altogether, which is another stressful topic of its own.
While I’m an avid supporter of love and the many shades and forms it can come in, what I won’t support is downplaying or disrespecting Black women in the process. We have seen far too often the sexualization and fetishizing of exotic, foreign or white women on numerous occasions who have coveted the features of Black women, all while neglecting us in the process.
With behavior like this, it’s no wonder the idea of Black love is being questioned. However, despite what people continue to promote on social media, all Black men do not support this way of thinking; In fact, a majority of them don’t.
According to the 2014-2015 American Community Survey analysis provided by The Pew Research Center, 24 percent of all black men were likely to have a spouse of a different race.
Research done in 2011 by two Black male scholars confirmed these numbers, and dug deeper into clearing up such misconceptions. Assistant professors Ivory Toldson, Ph.D. of Howard University and Bryant Marks, Ph.D. of Morehouse College challenged what they labeled as “cultural myths,” and census data proved that contrary to common misconceptions, all types of Black men are still primarily choosing Black women as marital partners.
When is comes to married Black men with college degrees, 85 percent of them have Black wives. In further research, Toldson and Marks found that for Black men with larger incomes of above $100,000, 83 percent of them have Black wives.
As previously mentioned, maybe it’s the different affluent Black athletes and entertainers being linked to women outside of their race that has created this idea that Black men don’t marry Black women anymore, but statistics from over the last few years have proven that theory is not true.
Black love has been the foundation for generations and by the looks of the aforementioned numbers, Black men still realize that. Once marriage was an experience Black women and men could not freely participate in, and now the union they share is an act of love and unconditional commitment.
Whether it’s society that isn’t boldly showcasing all types of modern day Black love or it’s us who don’t notice the examples in our everyday lives, the fact of the matter is Black love is still real and thriving.
As for the accuracy of the infamous Kanye lyric, statistically speaking, it’s fake news. He may not have done it, but a number of Black men who “get on” or have gained wealth over the years are also still marrying black women. Sorry Kanye.