Home / Fall 2014 / Be proud of your labels

Be proud of your labels

By: Elan Waite

Today’s society is obsessed with labels. We either crave them or despise them. We invest in them and rebuke them. Be it the materialistic labels we work for or the social labels we cannot avoid, labels are evident and prominent.

When Raven-Symone, a popular child star from “The Cosby Show” and “That’s so Raven,” told Oprah Winfrey during an interview that she didn’t like labels, it started a buzz on social media. She included being labeled gay as something she did not like, which for the most part was not commented on. What really got people talking is when she included being labeled as African-American.

What is a little upsetting about Raven’s comment was that after saying she didn’t want to be labeled as an African-American, she promptly labeled herself as an American. It shows that’s it not the idea of labels that she doesn’t like, it’s the labels she’s been given.

The idea of a color blind society is a nice thought in theory, but what does it rob the individual of? In a time where being African-American is synonymous with mainly negative stereotypes, it’s important to embrace your culture. As an African American woman, I’d like to think that every time I do something positive or accomplish a goal, I help my race progress.

That does not just go for me and my race, but for all people of all races. I identify myself as African-American. I embrace my “label.” I don’t let it define me. Instead, I work to redefine it.

Raven’s desire to stay away from labels is not uncommon. This topic is one discussed in many circles. Talented, humorous, accomplished: These are more labels affiliated with Raven-Symone and somewhere there is a little girl who wants to identify with her as a strong African-American.



Check Also

Editorial: Racial slur controversy questions transparency of VSU administration

On Sept. 27, VSU communications professor Dr. Fred Earls stirred up controversy during one of ...

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *