Michelle Catches Hell For No Black Designers


Michelle Obama should’ve known that the mention of her Cuban and Asian designers was going to start a storm sooner or later.  The thoughtful choice of two unknown designers that were also minority was tainted by the fact that there could have been an opportunity in there for a black up and coming designer as well.

Maybe the Obamas really feel that the playing field is closer than it has ever been to being even.  Being at the helm of the most powerful nation could possibly do that to your thinking.  But what is really the key to race relations in the U.S.?  The nomination of a Black President is a start, but the acceptance of him will be even better.

The acceptance is the barrier that our votes could not knock down.  Michelle has a right to choose who she wants for her clothes, but similar to the role models that we try to make out of our entertainers, she doesn’t have to extend anything to the black community.  Now that we’re a new America it should be enough that she is simply interested in being fair. 

I’d just like to see the Obama family put their own touches on the Presidency…on the White House.  I would have liked to have seen Common perform during the inauguration or possibly Frankie Beverly and Maze rather than the “quartet.”  Their choices go a long way in what everyone, including us, will feel is acceptable.  Hopefully, there will be a hall in the White House that is completely dedicated to Africa and a pail of black paint placed on the White House porch…even if it will never be used it will make a statement.  Don’t you agree?  See here what’s prompting all the headache.

-J.C. Brooks

17 thoughts on “Michelle Catches Hell For No Black Designers”

  1. Did any of the designers even submit a gown to her? Cause I would have given her a gown. Honestly, it’s her style and she picked what she liked.
    She just got in and already the shit begins…

  2. I think it’s very fair that she chose those designers. They are still people of color who need to be given a chance. And, let’s face it, she’s been first lady for – what? – a week? I think she got some time to give a Black American designer some love. They need to ease up off her. What ? They expect her to be completely exclusive when it was a nation of all people that elected them first family?
    We’re not like “them.” We tend to play more fair. For better or for worse.

  3. This is so stupid. So everytime she see’s something she likes, she’s supposed to stop and verify if it’s make by a black designer or not? Come on people. Put the racisim to rest!

  4. Let it Go and Move On.

    There are more important things going on in the world than who the First Lady’s chooses to designer her clothes. For those that are upset, do you always wear black designers to your events.

  5. I’ve wondered about this even before the inauguration. Barbara Bates is a wonderful Black designer out of Chicago but many of us covet anything not associated with Black. You can bet any other race would have sought to highlight their own. Oh well…

  6. Michelle Obama wore the designer she chose….it should matter not who she chose. Barack Obama said it plain as day, “he’s want to bring change to America….the UNITED States” which is comprised of many different ethnicities and cultures. I see Michelle practicing and supporting that change by making the choice she made in what she wore from two different minority designers. As said by another commentator, “There are more important things going on in the world than who the First Lady’s chooses to designer her clothes”. I’m African American with a militant perspective but I’ll be damned if I’m only gonna where clothes designed by African American’s. She should where what the hell she wants by whomever she chooses…and I LOVE HER FOR DOING SO!!!!

  7. In my opinion I think Michelle is a very intelligent lady and in due time she will wear a dress designed by an African American. Chicago is a city that likes to dress so she will definitely hold her own. I think she dresses well and she will wear whatever she likes tastefully. I definitely like it in her! Create your own style! We want leaders not followers.

  8. I am sure that several sketches were presented to our new First Lady for her to consider and select. I hope she did not ask what race the designers were when she was looking at these sketches of gowns. And, now Mrs. Obama is being criticized because she *did* choose the design of a minority but….not the “right” minority because the design chosen was not created by an African American? Maybe, some of us are not as ready for “change” as we proclaim? We have to know that the Obamas can not be Afro-Centric all the time and represent all of America. We have to accept the fact that we are no longer the “only minority race” in America. And, move on.

  9. look, let our first lady wear what she wants to wear! heyell, WE ALL DO THAT! She is grown, just like the rest of us. this is silly and so irrelevant! Michelle Obama is beautiful no matter what she wears!

  10. It’s the nature of the beast… had she chosen all black, it would have been a problem also. Michelle has 8 years to showcase a few folks in the fashion industry.

    my thoughts…

  11. First of all this doesn’t sound like a Black person talking, but a NIGGA meaning: whatever color you are “you are ignorant.” The more things changes, the more some attitudes will stay the same: STUPID. With the country at crisis: who in their God sane mind cares what designer, designed the First Lady’s Dress. Give it a rest. I don’t know any Black person that shopes exclusively “black.” Get a grip on life, find something to do with your time, and stop “Hating.”

  12. I can not believe there are people who really cared about if her designers were African American. Seriously?!

    1) There are bigger fish to fry in the next four years. If we really care about the success of this first Black family in the White House, we’d all better be ready to pull our own weight. Barack can change laws, but he can not change people. Each of us have to make a conscious and personal choice to treat our neighbors better. Each of us have to commit to finding some way to contribute our talents and our time to our communities. Each and every single one of us have to decide to embrace our differences. This is a team effort, if you’re not willing to work for the team, you will ride the bench with the rest of the haters!

    2) Yes, my people were running around talking about change like most of the rest of the people in the free world, but it’s sad that a lot of them will think that only means change for us!

    3) Michelle has plenty of time to dazzle us with her sense of style. I am sure there will opportunities for all kinds of designers in the time that she is First Lady. Can we just be happy in knowing that she will always look good and that in itself represents us well!

    4) And why do some of us still believe that every Black person who makes it must carry the heavy load of being the representative of the race. Yes, they should give back because it is what a people do to sustain their communities and those who can, should. And I am sure the Obama’s will, more than these ball players and entertainers we so idolize and seldom hold to any accountability. But they can neither speak for the entire race, dress for the entire race, or work only for the race. How could everything they do or say or wear represent an entire race of people instead of just represent who they are? Unless of course you think that because we’re all Black we all believe and think and act (and look) the same way! They are humans whose experiences and values and moral compasses will be reflected in their decisions. They can not worry about how Black folks will feel about every decision they will have to make. This is going to be a hard enough journey for them and everybody is looking at them to prove something. Can we just try to give them a little slack, especially about something so damn simple-minded as clothes!

    Get Over It and Let’s Make it Happen People. There is much work to be done.

  13. Black folks always got to act up. The poor woman just stepped onto the platform. I thought this Presidency was suppose to be about “We the People”, not about “We the Black People”. I’m sure that in the four year span of office she will wear a black designer’s clothing line. My goodness, in this day and age don’t we have enough crap on our plates as far as being citizens of the United States of America without having to worry about what the hell the First Lady is wearing. For all of you who are worried out there about Michelle’s attire, why don’t you go down to some of these homeless shelters or food banks and volunteer, and I’m sure by the time you’re done serving the masses, Michelle’s dresses would be the farthest thing on your minds.

    Peace Out & God Bless

  14. Give me a break! If she’d worn only black designers, that would have been a problem, too. I’m sure she’ll be showcasing all kinds of designers over the next four years…black, white, asian, hispanic…as long as their designs fit her “style”. We should be celebrating the history that’s been made in America, not black America!

  15. and another thing….I should have read the article referenced in the blog before my first comment…I have a problem with the last sentence of this quote:

    Asked if perhaps the First Lady isn’t looking at the world colorlessly, Eele said, “It’s one thing to look at the world without color but she had seven slots to wear designer clothes. Why wasn’t she wearing the clothes of a black designer? That was our moment.”

    Ms. Eele is a little confused…it was not their moment…it was the America’s moment, it was the Obama’s moment…when did it get to be the designer’s moment? Sure, there’s the recognition that comes with designing a dress for the First Lady, but this country has a lot of issues considerably bigger than this one.

  16. I liked her clothes and the diversity in designers, glad they weren’t europeans but I say whenever you can elevate Black people and keep showing the world how spectacular we are do it and that is in any arena.

    We have alot of children that aspire to be President but we have a lot of young diva’s who can aspire to be designers and take the fashion world by storm.

    I think she will highlight us in this arena eventually. I hope so.

  17. In the supposedly post-racial world that some claim we are living in, is it really necessary to prove how black you are by enacting a quota system for your wardrobe?
    Having the Obamas in the White House changes the game on many levels and it ought to make us take a look at changing our collective game. We’ve got to learn to stop poking our lips out everytime we don’t get picked first in kickball. We say we agree with King’s statement that we want to live in a world where we are judged by the content of our character and not the color of our skin, but then we want to cry foul when skin color isn’t the overriding factor. We can’t have it both ways. Michelle judged her dress choice by the feel of the fabric she had to wear all day long in the below-freezing temperatures. Hence Isabel Toledo’s day dress (very nice choice) and Jason Wu’s evening dress best (not so much, but as first lady she’s FREE to pick the dress she wants).
    I’ve frankly heard too much about the outfits and not enough about what domestic agenda we hope she will pursue once the children are acclimated to D.C. Instead of us black folks giving her grief about a dress, let’s send her letters outlining issues that we’d like her to address from her bully pulpit that directly affect the well-being of our communities — let’s start with the apparently incurable crabs-in-a-barrel syndrome. Let’s move on to domestic abuse, misogyny, lack of self-esteem and powerlessness. Encourage her to apply the Obama model of successful male-female relationship to the community at large. And create plans that would help her achieve that goal.
    Let’s free our minds so our behinds will follow.

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