From Naomi speaking right before black Vogue, from Nykhor Paul crying out that the industry was racist because they did not have make up for her, from Ajak Deng quiting modeling due to racism and making such a big racket about it and then eventually returning, and Iman and Alek Wek constantly talking about racism in their interviews, from the black models matter campaign to where Ashley B travelled the world to discriminate racism and more recently, Dede Howard’s new mirror campaign. The question remains, what do these models do for black models as a whole when they generate so much popularity from their ‘Industry Is Racist’ cries?
It’s very puzzling that the same black models are hardly seen promoting or projecting black designers, nor favouring other entities due to their blackness, yet the whole community should drop their bags for their cries. Naomi once said, she is not going to stop modeling until there are more black models being hired. What would have been more appropriate to say is “I am going to encourage my clients to use other black models”, or even simply giving access to new black models on her facebook page, or taking them along to her celebrity night outs, but surely she’s not ready to sacrifice her career for the success of other black models.
I am a believer in name and shame, and readers of FashionGHANA.com will know we do that when necessary, however, it is beginning to seem as though the race card has been a long haul of business for some. “Hey I am not getting any bookings let me cry racism to generate attention and once I do, good bye”, and then you have the magazine that will do something racist just to get the black community complaining and after they receive popularity, they come up with a measly shameful apology and then it’s back to business as usual.
Yes, racism exist. Yes it is very much embedded in the institutions with all participants pointing the blame on another. Casting directors blame the clients, clients blame the agencies, agencies blame the casting directors and no one owning up for who is rejecting black models.
Nevertheless, the ‘I am going to complain to look like some sort of hero, when in return I aim to do nothing for black models once I get my stake’ cry is getting tedious. Only for the fact that those that climb further up their ladders whilst doing don’t look back to open doors with other models. Yes, we know they are your competitors, but if you are just as neglectful of their success as your white counter parts whom you say are racist, then you are no different in action, and you might as well put the race card down and use your own id card. There is enough time for any of the said black models to prove this wrong, or even make light of their acts to combat racism that we may not know of, so hopefully if they are reading, which they probably aren’t, they would take it as a message and not otherwise.