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Dr. Umar x Nick Cannon

Source: Counsel Culture / Youtube

Recently, the self-proclaimed Prince of Pan-Africa, Dr. Umar Johnson, made an appearance on Nick Cannon‘s Counsel Culture so he could lecture Black America while continuing to spread his archaic and myopic views on masculinity, particularly, as it pertains to Black men.

During the episode, Johnson and Cannon discussed an aspect of Black entertainment that has long been discussed by Black people but has gotten renewed attention ever since Katt Williams brought it up during his internet-breaking interview with Shannon Sharpe on Club Shay Shay—Black men wearing dresses in Hollywood.

“If we will admit that entertainment is a weapon of indoctrination in an age where we see a war against not only the life of Black men but the survival of Black masculinity, how can a Black man putting on a dress not be a problem?” Umar began.

Umar didn’t bother offering any evidence that entertainment is intentionally used as “a weapon of indoctrination” or that there’s a war on “Black masculinity,” which is a common claim made by members of the Hotep-verse whenever they see images of effeminate Black men or anything they even perceive as such.

“I want us to make sure we draw a distinction between feminine energy and female sexuality,” Johnson continued. “For [Black] children, who consume more television per capita than any other ethnic group in America, so the messages you put in those movies are going to hit our children 50-times harder because they’re more dependent on television than anyone else and they’re less likely to have a father at home.”

While it is true that Black people, on average, consume more TV per capita than any other racial group (not by anything close to 50 times more, but whatever), Johnson, like many others, has just kind of decided that Black comedians and actors wearing dresses will affect a Black boy’s masculinity and that “feminine energy” is a detriment to Black boys and by extension, the Black community.

Even if this were true—and there are no non-hotep certified sociological studies that show it is—Umar’s logic completely ignores the fact that Black men in film and TV are shown not wearing clothing meant for women far more often than they’re shown in dresses. He appears to be ignoring other programming such as the world of sports, where football and basketball, especially, still serve as a popular mainstream source where Black masculinity can be witnessed in all its abundance. 

Listen: Black people are going to feel however they’re going to feel about Black actors in dresses and feminine Black males in general, but what it all comes down to is a fear of the normalization of gender and/or sexual fluidity. Umar and his ilk suggest that these concepts will cause young Black boys to struggle with their identities, others will argue that the same concepts will aid in the development of Black children and all children who already live that struggle.

Anyway, you can watch the full interview between Johnson and Cannon below.