White privilege is real; there is no arguing against that. However, the internet insists that being called a “Becky with good hair” is somehow derogatory. Let me tell you, as a white girl that grew up in Brazil’s city with the largest Black population, I’m a Becky. And by Beck I mean I’m a stereotypical white girl, let’s not start quoting Urban Dictionary in order to invalidate one’s argument. While I’m Latina, born in Latin America, my country’s roots trace back to Portugal and my family’s to Italy and Spain. I have no direct familial roots to Brazil’s native tribes. To sum it up, I am as white as one can be living in Brazil.
Growing up, I was not made fun for being pale, but more importantly, I was never ostracised for having straight, good hair. In fact, my hair has been glorified by my friends for years. I’ve had long and short hair. I have bleached it, I have dyed it various shades of blue, pink, purple, teal, and green. My naturally good hair always finds itself back to its natural state of straightness. However, Glamour Magazine thinks my privileged good hair has to be celebrated. I’ve lived an entire life of compliments and adoration towards my hair, it needs no more flattering.
Now, allow me to respond directly to Glamour.
“All Beckys can master the hair flip! (Well, they are fabulous after all…)”
Don’t be fooled, “good” hair will flip to absolutely anything. If the lamest of winds fly by, Becky’s hair will flip. A “hair flip” is a simple sideways motion with your head. Anyone can do a hair flip. I do have to agree, however, that I truly am incredibly fabulous, but my hair has nothing to do with that.
“They don’t even need much hair to do it.”
It’s called a “hair” flip, not “loads of hair” flip. Anyone that has short, long, straight, curly hair can perform this art form of movements. Also, let’s not forget to mention how a white woman flipping her hair means she’s being cute and powerful, but once a black woman flips her hair, she’s being either sassy or bossy.
“Everyone knows who’s boss when Becky’s around…”
I could take a historical turn with this one and discuss white supremacy to its core, but it’s far simpler than that. Becky’s good hair is put on a pedestal as the image of beauty. Once Becky and her hair are around, all eyes are directed to society’s construction of the pinnacle of what to be considered as beautiful.
“Written on behalf of our gorgeous Beckys. They were too modest, go figure.”
Honestly, I’m ashamed. I am not modest because I don’t want someone directing their attention to my hair and all its goodness, I am embarrassed that a positive trait that society celebrates has to be once again brought to life due to misinterpretation.
For those of you blaming Beyoncé, stop. It’s our fault. We’ve lead the media to believe every comment that is not in complete favor of our whiteness is to be counteracted. Let’s face it, we are white. We have our struggles, we are not all born into wealth, but society privileges our whiteness and we need to stop thinking that being called out for being put on a pedestal for simply being white is wrong; it’s reality.