The Double Consciousness: Being Black, Woman & A (Potential) Sexual Assault Victim

*This title addresses black women who may or may not have experienced sexual trauma. While a great deal of us have, not everyone has. However, we are ALL in danger throughout our daily lives. We must ALL protect ourselves.*

What do we say in a time like this? Pray. Be with friends. Remain hopeful. Good vibes. Keep it pushing. We have to keep our cool in the face of troubling news. 

After a long string of terrible, heart breaking, gasp worthy moments from all the chaos we've been hearing and now this: Bill Cosby is finally found guilty for the sexual crimes he committed to countless women. It is said that after the verdict was delivered Cosby cursed the DA for bringing these crimes against him. Cosby's lawyer assured paparazzi that they would be fighting this decision furiously. After all this time and a guilty verdict later, he still can't be a man. He's 80 years old and still not a man. 

For black women, it's a very familiar feeling of anger, conflict and the sour, slight scent of sadness and grief. For some this may not be true. But for those of us who have never ever seen a black relationship that wasn't toxic - UP CLOSE - the Huxtables were a big thing - bigger than the REAL people in your life. The Huxtables gave us hope that was more scarce than money. It told us that we too could wake up and have a career, be in love and even more over, be Claire Huxtable. Soft and strong in the same breath. Would gasp, chuckle and swiftly address the very idea of being dominated by her own husband. Claire was a lioness but never lost that soft, supple, feminine touch. And Cliff, the character appeared to support, love and honor all that she was while also maintaining his grace and values. 

And that's where it is. That's the death. We lost Cliff. Cliff died. The countless number of women who came forward with who they knew behind the respectability politics revealed a dirty secret that could make the air from your lungs flee. 

Now we are left knowing the truth and it hurts. We bought this idea that the Huxtables presented us. We bought in and now we find out that we invested our time, love and energy into a false idea. It is not that we do not understand the pain the sexual assault victims faced is more important. A woman's ability to consent, protect herself and conquer a predator is worth far more than a false hero's stained cape. 

Time's up bitch. Any person who should take away a person's right to consent to the treatment that is being given, commits a violent act. 

As black women, we feel both sides. This post is to acknowledge Cosby's verdict as progress and the death of a beautiful picture painted for us so long ago. It was a family portrait of beautiful black people - where each member of the family was protected, loved and taken cared of. 

To my sisters I say allow the joy of the progress made to encourage you to never give up hope. Today we are pushed more and more to see one another as human beings, fully. And if we fail to do so, we are also reminded of the impact of these hateful actions. This pressure is necessary to purge the violent, toxic individuals that plague upon us. Time's up. 

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