The Value of Black Women In America


The latest hot topic and matter of flaring debate, all over the country, has been that of the most recent exposure and occurrences of domestic violence cases. It was in reaction to NFL Commissioner Roger Goodwell’s pick of members to serve on the Domestic Abusive Leadership Team; a team in which lacks the representation of African American women who have been victims of domestic violence, and in addition to a recent article that labeled Shonda Rhimes as an “angry Black woman”, that probed TV One host, Roland Martin, to comment and discuss the devalue of Black women in America.

It is not a contemporary trend for Black women to be regarded as entities of low importance. Black women, for years, have been on the bottom of the totem pole as it relates to pay, promotion, and even priority. Roland passionately describes the judgments and stereotypes that have been historically and socially tagged on to Black women, and how, although society has made some progress, one thing that has not too much changed, is the general perception of Black women.

Martin charges Black men to stand-up for Black women when such perceptions are being generated amongst, “the powers that be”. He also charged women to collectively take a stand and demand a position on the NFL Domestic Abusive Leadership Team. It is in Martin’s belief that there must be a corporate effort to demand respect of Black women and to hold all accountable for the inequalities of African American women.

In many cases, Black women are, in fact, underrepresented as it relates to communal decision making, and has generally been devalued by the vast majority of American society. What efforts do you think, ought to be made, in order to redirect the perception of Black women and our role in today’s society?


Kara Warner is an upcoming author, blogger, and educator from Omaha, NE, by way of Hammond, IN. She has placed much emphasis on supporting, and becoming an advocate for women and youth who struggle with self- esteem, image, and perception issues.

In 2009, Kara founded a program entitled, ‘Beauty Is Skin Deep Movement, Inc.” in order to reconstruct the perception and image of women of color in American society. She has conducted classes for the YMCA, Urban League of Nebraska, Middle School Learning Center, and Girls Incorporated of Omaha.

Kara is currently working on a book titled, ” False Feelings Appearing Real”, a compilation of experiences and stories by women who have, throughout their life, struggled with understanding their feelings and are now learning how to cope with them.

Follow Kara @Conquistanoir (IG) Livelifwpurpose (Twitter)


  1. Being a great representation of black women is more effective at combating stereotypes than constantly giving attention to the negative attention black women receive. It has to be shown that those stereotypes are both inaccurate and of poor taste to even continue to discuss. More attention needs to be given to positive examples and celebrations of black women not the opposite.

  2. I read the full article in re: Shonda Rhimes. It was actually a pretty good piece – perhaps a better choice of words for “not classically beautiful” would have been useful. Classical and beauty are subjective terms – I find Viola Davis to be both – but historically (clasically??) American media has pushed a very singular standard of beauty that did not include women who look like me or Viola. The fact that the author was unable to (did not see the need to?)find a better (and still succinct) way to make this point is really a minor criticism in light of the main point of the article – which is that Shonda Rhimes has and continues to completely redefine the terms of Black female roles on network tv.

  3. I believe and always will that no matter what you do it won’t change the perception of someone unless they are willing to change their own opinion. But I am not against any effort to help others realize the value and importance of any individual especially black women. I remember when a writer said that First Lady Michelle Obama was angry and showed a picture. It just let you know that when there is hate it will be carried away with those who think that they can get away with it. I am glad that a black woman got the lock on an entire night on tv.

  4. I agree, it is how we actually feel about ourselves that’s most important. While we should protest, and I did when I got the email about the NY Times article. While the writer had a point of view, the words angry black woman means something very real and palpable to the masses and it’s not complimentary. For a black woman who employs everybody, write roles based on characters and not race, fired two black actors with essential characters on her shows, never responded negatively to Kathleen Hiegle’s insults, a graduate of Dartmouth, yeah, I found it offensive, regardless of whatever else the writer may have said because people only hear in sound bites, buzz words, hot topics and codes, why Shonda herself responded, a woman who keeps a low profile and we know little about, other than he work!

    The NFL has its work to do for sure, but black women will always be dissed because we are phenomenal, just what we have to do to sit at the table makes us so!

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