Love is one of the most complex theories in our history as man. No one can truly define love but we have the ultimate gift of being able to feel and sense love. 

I often gaze at twenty first century hippies who speak of love as this abstract ideal that they say comes so natural for everyone. They often speak of the fact that it is a human right–to love and be loved. And, while I watch the white dreadlock masters of love who run Rastafari shops and sell incense made in India, I often wonder if anyone realizes the difficulties of love. 

Love is difficult. Love is one of the hardest and most difficult things to do in this entire world. And, this is not a post about how much we should love our partners or the 21 step guide to finding your ultimate mate or the self-help edition of how to make you a better person so you can be loved.

This is a notice to the world that Africans in America have the most difficult task as it relates to love. We’re not even going to discuss love one to another in our culture because the most difficult thing about love in the African-American community is the ability to love ourselves. And, I do not mean as a race, I mean it is difficult for us to love our own selves.

I’ve read more news articles this week about what that lady from “The Talk” said about nappy hair, random shootings in our neighborhood and black suicides than I can take. 

It is no whisper in someone else’s ear that we have issues with loving our own selves. The inability to love ourselves has been passed down from generation to generation. We’ve “dark and ‘lovelied'” ourselves, we’ve bleached ourselves, we’ve hotcombed the shit out of our necks, we’ve cut open titties to make bigger ones, we’ve inserted ‘Fix-A-Flat’ in our asses, we’ve suit and tied it, we’ve sagged it, we’ve swagged it, we have done it all to feel something for ourselves. And, yet, almost 400 years after slavery we still haven’t achieved the goal of loving our own selves.

Massa didn’t beat the shit out of you, he beat the love out of you. And, by all means, it is understandable. A man who lives under the reign of another man will do anything in his power to be accepted by that other man because he lives in the bowels of the other man’s existence. Please believe, I know, I’m here, too. But, in the words of those mighty, mighty men who organized one of the most “radical” and progressive organizations in these unUnited States of America, ‘there is no struggle without progress.’ 

One step at a time. If you cannot, in the year of 2013, see the beauty in your own kinky hair, when so many trailblazers who came before you preached about the beauty and bounty of the African woman, then something is wrong. 

When a person does not value himself, he is easily swindled by others. For years, we have proven to other races around the world, that black is whack and nappy is not fucking happy, so when a white man grabs a microphone and feels comfortable enough to call your sisters “nappy headed hos” what can you say? 

Are you going to go with the old adage, “I can say it, but you can’t?” 

I often wonder where we’ll be in the next thirty to forty years. I often wonder if we’ll ever have the ability to love ourselves and pass self-love as a concept to our children so that it endures for generations. I know it can be done. Because self-hate certainly has. Let love prove itself just as hates has. No reason why the opposition should always win. Love has to get its TKO at some point. The question is are we ready to train so we can get back in the ring.


-J. Prince, Princepality 79


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