Rockin' Rough n Stuff in Our Afros and Puffs!

“Every Generation Needs a New Revolution”

                           Thomas Jefferson

No truer words have ever been spoken! We live in a time where we as a people are in desperate need of a revolution. Our lives are being snuffed out by the hands of the very people we pay to protect and serve us. Every other day there is a black man or woman dying and sadly we haven’t, as a people, fully come together as a unit like our forefathers and mothers during the Civil Rights Movement.

However, we are out there protesting in many ways. We have the Black Lives Matter movement, who banded together to protest the killing of young Trayvon Martin and have fought the good fight since for the many other senseless murders.

There’s Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand during the singing of the National Anthem, instead choosing to kneel until there is social change and judicial equality.

We see many professional and college athletes following suit, as well as, the average joe fighting for the right to exist in this country and others. But there are some protesters we don’t hear much about, young ladies like Vanessa Van Dyke, The South African high school girls in Pretoria and the professional women with Locs took to Instagram and the Ohio school that banned afro puffs and “twisted braids.”

Let’s take a look at these amazing soldiers.

Credit: Huffington Post UK
A 12-year-old girl who loves her big puffy hair attends an affluent private school in Orlando, Fla, Faith Christian Academy. School officials informed Vanessa she had a week to decide whether to cut her hair and stay at the school or be expelled. Vanessa and her mother, Sabrina Kent were understandably upset by this, the school explained to Kent that her hair was a ‘distraction’ to other students. This is coming after Kent complained about the harassment her daughter received about her hair. Vanessa’s mother told the local news they won’t be cutting her hair because it’s a part of her identity. Vanessa confirms her stance:

“It says I’m unique. First of all, it’s puffy and I like it that way. I know people will tease me about it because it’s not straight. I don’t fit in.” Van Dyke told Huffington Post. A week later, Faith Christian Academy rescinded it’s decision. Vanessa was prepared to leave a school she loved and friends she’d made to stand for what she believed in.

“I have a natural Afro, but a teacher told me I need to comb my hair because it looks like a bird’s nest,” one girl told the head of the education council in South Africa.

Credit: nymag website
The prestigious, formally all white Pretoria High School for girls, has come under fire for their treatment of the young black girls who attend the school. The South African girls have been subjected to ridicule and racist remarks regarding their hairstyles. Another young lady’s mother cut her hair because she didn’t want any trouble with the school and the school even went so far as to withhold food until the girls “fixed” their hair. These young ladies took to the streets to fight the unfair treatment of who they are, how they identify themselves and the erasing of their culture in a peaceful protest. They were prepared to be expelled from a school that provides an excellent education to stand for up for themselves and their blackness.

There are many many more stories that I can tell about black girls and women fighting for the right to embrace who we are, embrace our culture and stand together united in this fight for the natural black woman.


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