Thursday, December 22, 2011

Dutch Magazine Labels Rihanna as the "Ultimate Nigggabitch"

Robyn Rihanna Fenty

Rihanna is furious with Jackie. The Dutch glossy magazine called the world-famous singer a "nigga bitch". In a tweet Rihanna accused the magazine of racism. Jackie has issued its apologies for the "bad joke".

The offending item is headed The Nigga Bitch. The piece is meant as fashion advice for girls who want to dress like Rihanna: a good girl gone bad with a ghetto ass - in short, the ultimate nigga bitch. (source: translated the entire text of the Jackie magaine article which said,

"She has street cred, she has a ghetto ass and she has a golden throat. Rihanna, the good girl gone bad, is the ultimate niggabitch and displays that gladly, and for her that means: what's on can come off. If that means she'll be on stage half naked, then so be it. But Dutch winters aren't like Jamaican ones, so pick a clothing style in which your daughter can resist minus ten. No to the big sunglasses and the pornheels, and yes to the tiger print, pink shizzle and everything that glitters. Now let's hope she won't beat anybody up at daycare."

Ayana Byrd of the Daily Beast writes, "Racist Dutch Magazine Insults Rihanna and All Black Women Lose Out," on 22 December 2011: A Dutch magazine used a combination of two of the nastiest words you can call any black woman to describe Rihanna. She fired back, and the editor’s out of a job—but we’re out of a lot more, Ayana Byrd says.

Black women have had to endure a lot in the name of popular entertainment. We’ve been martyred mammies, oversexed nearly naked whores, wisecracking know-it-alls, and lazy welfare mothers in disproportionately higher numbers than even the most Republican-tainted report has ever claimed we were in real life. And for the most part, we could complain but not expect any change to come from the media powers-that-be, the ones making a lot of money off representations that kept us as caretakers or hypersexual stereotypes that sprung out of slavery. Things took a minor step in the right direction this week when an Internet-led, quick fire grassroots protest showed that black women—young, old, famous, and anonymous—were not going to be OK being casually cast as “niggabitches.”

What exactly is a niggabitch? Aside from being a combo of two of the vilest words you can call any black woman, it is the headline of a fashion story just published by the Dutch magazine Jackie. In an article on how to dress like “De Niggabitch” Rihanna, the story, translated by Parlour magazine, says, “She has street cred, she has a ghetto a-- and she has a golden throat. Rihanna, the good girl gone bad, is the ultimate niggabitch and displays that gladly, and for her that means: what’s on can come off. If that means she’ll be on stage half naked, then so be it.”

Let’s repeat what a niggabitch is, to underline why Rihanna went so on-the-record ballistic without any filter from a publicist: it is the vilest combination of words that you can call a black woman. It is not, as Hoeke claimed, “slang” pulled from American hip-hop vernacular and wittily included in her magazine. Even in an art form that at times seems to relish its misogyny, rappers do not call black women this. In a musical genre that often seems to have no lines to cross, here is one. We are only familiar with the word because we are familiar with the Ku Klux Klan, lynchings, slavery, and plantation rape. It is from this slice of American culture that Jackie magazine borrowed its slang.

Not surprisingly, Hoeke’s explanation and half-hearted apology didn’t soothe anyone, and within a day of Parlour’s article, Hoeke was left with little recourse but to step down over what she still insisted was a misunderstanding.

However, she’s not that sorry—she’s just out of a job. But black women are out of a lot more, namely the chance to believe that we’re seen as equals and deserving of more respect than a niggabitch could ever expect. (source: Daily Beast)

"I hope you can read English," Rihanna tweeted to Jackie editor-in-chief Eva Hoeke addressing the article, "because your magazine is a poor representation of the evolution of human rights! I find you disrespectful, and rather desperate!! You ran out of legit, civilized information to print! There are 1000's of Dutch girls who would love to be recognized for their contributions to your country, you could have given them an article. Instead, u paid to print one degrading an entire race! That's your contribution to this world! To encourage segregation, to mislead the future leaders to act in the past! You put two words together, with the intent of abasement, that made no sense..."NIGGA BITCH"?!....Well with all respect, on behalf of my race, here are my two words for you...FUCK YOU!!!" (source: The Montreal Gazette)

US Slave Note: Thank you for publishing your negrophobic propaganda this holiday season. This site usually features tattered unvarnished images of the degradation of human enslavement and subjugation. It is highly unusual to display images of beautiful black women and stay historically relevant. For your callously tin-ear on American pop culture and your insensitivity to the race and gender epithets, I'd like to say thank you for giving me a reason to post these gorgeous images of Rihanna. Merry Christmas from the US Slave blog!

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