“Sorry Jr. / I already ruined ya / Cause you ain’t even alive / Paparazzi’s pursuing ya / Sins of a father make your life ten times harder …” Jay-Z – “New Day,” Watch the Throne
On tonight’s MTV Video Music Awards, Beyoncé Knowles-Carter passionately performed her new song “Love on Top” while glaring in Jay-Z’s direction in the front row. “Baby it’s you / You’re the one I love / You’re the one I need / You’re the only one I see / C’mon baby it’s you …” The song ended, but she wasn’t finished. Mrs. Carter dropped her microphone, unbuttoned her purple blazer and exposed her baby bump while simultaneously rubbing her belly, nodding her head and grinning from ear to eyebrow. The look on Jay-Z’s face was the look of a proud father any expecting woman would want from her husband. Kanye and Jay celebrated like Jordan just hit the winning shot in game 6. An online status read, “It was like when Simba was presented to the world in ‘The Lion King.’”–a personal moment from a private couple that we all took part in.
But not everyone was excited for the couple. With great news follows great hate. As usual with anything Beyoncé does, Twitter was immediately on fire with comments. “Are people aware that other Black couples HAVE procreated before,” one user inquired? “Another tweet read, “Oooooh no!!! Now all these women will be poking holes in condoms trying to get pregnant now that Beyoncé’s pregnant.” There were even a few parody accounts created in honor of the fetus.
When the music stops, the blogs shut down and you turn the TV off, real life starts right back up again. The real life message in this all is to pursue your goals, then date, then marry and then have a baby. If we’re going to be so engulfed in celebrity lives and emulate what they do, then we need more husbands beaming over their wives’ pregnancies. You heard that correctly: Husbands, wives and pregnancies – all words that aren’t used in one sentence enough in our community.
Until the percentage of Black single-parent-homes decreases, we should reserve our criticism for the Carters. We haven’t seen this kind of Black family love on TV since The Cosbys and more recently, The Smiths. We should learn from this moment. For the five percent of people who will actually be affected by the pregnancy of Beyoncé, I applaud you. For the remaining of us 95 percent, let’s re-shift the focus on our relationships and ourselves. Then we can one day share the moment that we witnessed this evening: Black love.
– Enitan Bereola, II
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Bereola is the go-to style and etiquette impresario, public speaker and entrepreneur. He is also the author of the critically acclaimed BEREOLAESQUE: The Contemporary Gentleman & Etiquette book for the