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#BlackWomenAtWork And Why Many Of Their Bosses & Co-Workers Need To Shut The F*ck Up

By Brian Richards | Social Media | March 29, 2017 |

By Brian Richards | Social Media | March 29, 2017 |

Whenever you find yourself starting to think and believe that no one could possibly surpass Donald Trump when it comes to saying and doing incredibly stupid and offensive things that inspire all of the face-palms, you can always count on at least one person to step up and say “Hold my drink.” And recently, we had both Bill O’Reilly and Sean Spicer volunteering as Tribute.

This past Monday, Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) delivered a speech on the floor of the House of Representatives in which she made it abundantly clear that Donald Trump was not her President and that he did not have her support.

From The Washington Post:

“We have suffered discrimination. We have suffered isolation and undermining,” Waters said. “But we stand up for America, often times when others who think they are more patriotic, who say they are more patriotic, do not.”

“When we fight against this president and we point out how dangerous he is for this society and for this country, we’re fighting for the democracy. We’re fighting for America,” Waters continued. “We’re saying to those who say they’re patriotic, but they turned a blind eye to the destruction he’s about to cause this country: ‘You’re not nearly as patriotic as we are.’ “

(And @mmfa, the name of the African-American woman in Congress is Maxine Waters. If you can refer to the sentient and slowly rotting jar of mayonnaise that is Bill O’Reilly by name in your tweet, then you can offer Rep. Waters the very same courtesy.)

It didn’t take very long for most of the Internet, particularly Black Twitter, to catch wind of this and send this message to Bill O’Reilly as only Black Twitter can:


And not too long after, Bill seemingly realized the error of what he had done and offered a statement to apologize for his remarks regarding Rep. Waters and her hair. Granted, his apology is about as sincere and believable as Tony Soprano telling Carmela that he’ll never cheat on her again, but here it is.

“As I have said many times, I respect Congresswoman Maxine Waters for being sincere in her beliefs. I said that again today on Fox & Friends, calling her old-school. Unfortunately, I also made a jest about her hair which was dumb. I apologize,” O’Reilly said in a statement.

And Rep. Waters responded to O’Reilly and his apology last night on All In with Chris Hayes:

This is not the first, second, or third time that Bill O’Reilly has allowed racist, offensive, and just downright stupid comments to leave his mouth, and considering that these statements have largely contributed to his success and influence, it’s pretty much guaranteed that it won’t be the last.

And now we move on to White House Press Secretary/Sworn Enemy of Dippin’ Dots Sean Spicer, who continues to 1) look as if he stole all the ‘big suits’ from David Byrne’s wardrobe and 2) inspire many a face-palm by embarrassing both himself as well as his boss (Granted, it doesn’t take much work for Trump to be embarrassed, but still…), and giving the Saturday Night Live writing staff way too much material to work with as they extend yet another invitation to Melissa McCarthy to stop by Studio 8H. His newest contribution to that ever-expanding folder: getting belligerent with White House correspondent/American Urban Radio Networks reporter April Ryan (who was questioning him about the Trump administration’s perceived relationship with Russia) in front of other reporters and talking to her as if she were a child.

From The Daily Beast:

With so many investigations underway regarding Russia, alleged “wiretapping,” and other issues, the D.C. bureau chief for American Urban Radio Networks wanted to know the administration might try to “revamp its image” in the coming weeks.

“No, we don’t have that,” Spicer said, becoming immediately defensive. “I get it, but I’ve said it from the day that I got here until whatever, that there is no connection. You’ve got Russia. If the president puts Russian salad dressing on his salad tonight, somehow that’s a Russian connection.”

“I appreciate your agenda here, but the reality is — hold on,” Spicer continued, as Ryan tried to get a word in. “At some point, report the facts,” he said, arguing that everyone has come away with the conclusion that there was no “collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia — while in reality investigations are ongoing.
“I’m sorry that disgusts you. You’re shaking your head,” he said.

When Ryan pivoted to ask about Condoleezza Rice’s meeting with the president this week, Spicer responded by saying, “It’s interesting that you ask those two questions back to back. On the one hand, you say, what are we doing to improve our image and here he is meeting somebody that hasn’t been a big supporter.” He added, “It seems like you’re hell bent on trying to make sure whatever image you want to tell about this White House stays.”

As she protested, Spicer said, “I’m sorry, please stop shaking your head again.”

Moments later, Ryan offered up her one word reaction on Twitter:

Followed by these responses when interviewed by CNN about what had happened between her and Spicer:

Even Hillary Clinton had something to say about how both Waters and Ryan were recently treated.

Having to witness two highly-capable Black women be insulted and disrespected by others while doing their work was both frustrating and infuriating for many people, particularly the women of Black Twitter. As if having to deal with mansplaining, attention-seeking trolls jumping into their mentions and telling them what they should and shouldn’t do isn’t enough, many of them have dealt with similar behavior in their own places of employment (and in many cases, who were not able to speak up in defense of themselves, or they would run the risk of being punished with either demotions, terminations of their employment, or just additional shitloads of passive-aggressive behavior), and seeing what happened to Waters and Ryan was a reminder of this. So one of them, @MsPackyetti, started the hashtag #BlackWomenAtWork so that Black women could share their own experiences of dealing with racism and sexism when interacting with their bosses and colleagues.

Not that many of you need to be told or reminded of this, but I’ll do so anyway: these tweets are just a small drop in a very large bucket when it comes to what Black women must deal with on a daily basis when they’re at work. And your reaction to most of these tweets will probably be very similar to what you see in this GIF:

giphy (16).gif

Just click on the #BlackWomenAtWork hashtag to read many more tweets like these. And let them all serve as reminders of what not to say and do to the Black women who work for you and work with you at your jobs.

Words for every Black woman to live by. Whether they’re at work or not.

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Brian Richards is a Staff Contributor. You can follow him on Twitter.