Here at Flavorwire, we pride ourselves on not only writing some of the best content on the internet, but keeping an eye on all of the great writing that other folks on the ‘net are doing, too. Today, we have a think piece on Fader’s June/July cover stars, Rae Sremmurd, a hilarious and important interview with Louis C.K., and a reminder to remember our privilege in the wake of the shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando.
On Undefeated, David Dennis Jr. discusses the fragility of masculinity, as well as the devaluing and destruction of black male bonds that is rooted in slavery.
Last week Fader released their new cover photo, which features the two brothers, Swae Lee and Slim Jxmmi shirtless and resting on one another. Immediately the dismantling of their manhood ensued by popular media, as it regularly does, toward men who feel comfortable expressing affection toward other men. In this well-worded, extremely important think piece, Dennis delves into his personal relationship with male friends, the rap world, black brotherly love and the exchange of “I love you”s amongst heterosexual men.
I understand the reverberations of the constant attack on black manhood are felt today. We try to reclaim and redefine our masculinity with every generation — and each new generation brings new definitions that seem at odds with the definition that came before. So we’re extremely quick to clap back. We’re still fighting ghosts of emasculation that go back to the slave trade. I’ve seen enough black-male comedians in drag to know that the cycle continues (and comedian Dave Chappelle just wasn’t having it). But that doesn’t feel like a satisfactory explanation for why I’m so hesitant to tell other men I love them.
On Vulture, David Marchese interviewed comedian Louis C.K. who talks presidential candidates, masturbation and the obvious and unaddressed privilege of being a white man today.
Louis C.K. is not afraid to be frank, as we’ve seen in his stand up. While commenting on his choice words for presidential candidate Donald Trump, he opens up about checking privilege as a white man in his field and in the world. With all the white privilege and ignorance that tends to fill televisions and stages, C.K.’s voice is a refreshing one.
Oh, Jesus, no. White guys are fine. Nobody’s turning us down for a job. There’s nothing that’s being taken away from us. That’s a load of shit, people who think that. Most people are good people, and most people who are tasked with hiring or promoting take people at their value. That’s my experience anyway. But of course that’s my experience — because I’m a privileged white guy. As a white guy, things are pretty much always as I remember them being. I remember Venus and Serena Williams, they once said there’s a lot of racism on the tennis tour. And somebody asked Martina Hingis about it. She stuck her stupid face in it and said, “I haven’t seen any racism.” Well, you’re fucking Swiss! That’s not nice of me to say. Was it Hingis? I’m not sure. Whoever it was is probably very nice. Yeah, men, we’re fine. The level of privilege is so high that if we lose a little bit, there’s a panic: What’s happening to us?
The heart-breaking event that occurred this weekend at Pulse nightclub in Orlando surely shook the nation, reminding us of issues surrounding gun control, homophobia, racism and even islamophobia, but specifically calling attention to the targeting of the LGBT Latinx community that populated that club. Mosthof outrightly acknowledges and reminds straight white people that they should remember privilege and the abundant spaces they are safe in, including their own skin.
If healing is what we want, then we must give the marginalized voices targeted by this tragedy the space to articulate their suffering. This is what will emancipate them of their pain. This is what will empower others in communities who are suffering. If you are an ally, of course, your suffering matters too, and you are welcome to express your emotions. But, today, let searing indictments and heartbreaking personal accounts come from queer people, and especially queer communities of color. It will make all the difference, I promise you. It will resonate in such a way that cannot be achieved by a person who hasn’t lived an authoritatively queer, marginalized experience. These are the voices that will generate empathy, create cultural shifts, and reset the dial on progress. Please give them a chance to do so.