Speaking Easy: Buying drinks, Clubs, Barbie, Mixed relationships, Bleaching, Israel

This week I attended a monthly event  called Speakeasy, where  people gather to discuss topics – completely random subjects – and debate it out in a mature, sometimes heated but never rude manner.  So I thought I would share the questions asked this month, give you my opinion on them, and ask you to share yours:

If a guy offers/buys a girl a drink, should she not give him something in exchange?

One guy at the debate summed it up perfectly for me:  it’s a gamble.  Plain and simple.  If a man sees a woman he finds attractive and chooses to offer her a drink, he can’t then expect her to give him her number if she accepts the drink.  He can HOPE she does, the same way we HOPE our numbers are the lucky ones chosen in the National Lottery draw.  It would be different if the woman came up to him and asked him to buy her a drink, because he would have the right to ask what he gets in return.  Fair’s fair.  Some said that a woman should know what is expected if she accepts a drink, and I understand that completely, because a man isn’t going to offer it to a woman he finds unattractive, but I just think he has to be prepared to get nothing back, because not every woman is the same and that is the risk you run.

What do you think?

Is there a stigma attached to meeting a potential partner in a club?

Some said ‘yes’ straight away, but I disagree.  There’s rather a stigma attached to saying you’re going to the club to find a partner, because something about that gives off an air of  “I’m just looking for a good-time girl/guy”.  But  I don’t understand why just because you unintentionally met someone at a club, it must mean they won’t be serious.  If you know you are a decent person who just went out to enjoy music, dance, drink and generally have a good time with friends, why is it not possible that someone of the opposite sex went to do the same?  Someone said it would be better to go and find a partner at church, but I think that’s worse, because technically you’re supposed to go to church to praise God, so it would be wrong to be there for the sole purpose of finding a partner.  Again, if it happens then that’s a bonus.  One lady said that the way we are when we go clubbing is fake, because that’s the only time we do our hair nicely and wear nice clothes, etc, and we wouldn’t look like that on a day-to-day basis.  I beg to differ.  I know for a fact that I always try to make sure my hair looks as nice as possible, even when I’m just going to work.  If you se me at the club dancing my arse off to my favourite tune, that’s the real me, and what I’d also be doing if I was listening to it in my room.

What do you think?

Would you buy a Barbie doll for your (black) daughter, niece, god-daughter, etc, given the politics surrounding what constitutes beauty?

I had a Barbie – in fact I had three Barbies, and I can honestly tell you that I didn’t love them because they were white and I wanted to look like them.  I loved them because of the various clothing choices they had.  Plain and simple.  Barbie also had long hair which allowed me to change her hairstyle numerous times throughout the day, and I enjoyed that.  If we have to look at this from a racial point of view, then it wasn’t Barbie who possibly made me feel like I wanted to look like the other girls, but more the fact that the boys at school only seemed to like the white girls… or maybe just didn’t fancy me.  But it had nothing to do with Barbie.  Also, there was a large Barbie head that I know for a fact a lot of black girls would not have learnt how to do the cornrow hairstyle, if it wasn’t for practicing on this popular hair salon ‘toy.’  Another thing is that Barbie was unrealistic even to white girls, because no one realistically looks the way she does, with those body proportions.  So my answer is yes, I would buy a Barbie for my child or loved one.  It’s all down to what you teach your child about beauty.  If you leave it to the media, then you can deal with the future issues your child will have.

What do you think?

Are interracial relationships more accepted when the other person is not white?

Hmm… this one became quite heated.  Some said that yes they are accepted, because anything that is not white is closer to black.  One guy said that he was asked by a colleague at work why he only dates his own race, and whether he thinks it limits his choices, to which he replied that he wants his children to be black and the only way this can happen is if he is with a fellow black woman.  Another lady said that she doesn’t have an issue with mixed race relationships, but rather those who specifically choose NOT to date their own race.  On the superficial surface of it I will admit that if I see a fine black guy with a woman of another race, I’ll huff about it for a few seconds, but that’s only because I’d think want a fine guy for myself!  In real life, I have relatives with partners of a different race, and I like them all.  As long as it’s a case of you liking the person because you genuinely get on, etc, then I have no problem.  There’s nothing I can do about it.  It’s when you make stupid excuses as to why you won’t date your own race, that I take issue with.  And in relation to the comment about any other race being better because they are closer to black – absolute bull.  There are races in-between black and white who look down and are less accepting of black people than white people are.

What do you think?

Should bleaching creams be banned from black hair shops?

Some people shouted “Yes!” straight away, but realistically bleaching creams are needed for those who have skin problems, e.g, Vitiligo or keloids.  In my opinion it is completely up to the individual to know that skin bleaching creams do not do your skin any favours at all, so it is at your discretion to exercise common sense.  Those who choose to bleach their skins for cosmetic reasons clearly need psychological aid and need to learn to love themselves as they are.  One black male member of the audience commented that some black men need to take responsibility for black women bleaching their skins, because of their insistence to only look notice women of a lighter skin complexion, and he’s not wrong.  Of course this made other men, who didn’t really think about what he said, go up in arms.  But we also have to consider the fact that it is not really in our control to have these creams banned, as the black hair shops are predominantly owned by Asians, and Asians bleach their skin probably as much as some black people do.

What do you think?

Was Israel right to attack the aid ship on the Gaza strip?

Now I have to be completely honest – I really do not know the background on this, call me what you like. But the comments and opinions shared went into who Israel really belongs to, Judaism, and even the Bible.  All I will say is that I can’t see how it is ever right to attack an aid ship, unless the ‘aid’ consists of anything that is likely to harm innocent people.

What do you think?

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