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About Beyonce.

By January 29, 2014 Uncategorized 25 Comments

Screen Shot 2014-01-28 at 8.47.59 PM

(Beyonce in Dreamgirls Days)

Oh, Beyonce.

I have been a fan since Destiny’s Child. I loved your voice and your dance moves and your feisty independence. You were full of talent and passion and beauty and it was inspiring.

And then, Dreamgirls. You aren’t just a singer or a dancer but a songwriter and an actress as well–snagging awards and accolades for the many talents you possess.

Things were looking up for you as you continued your rise to fame–positioned as you were to use your powerful influence in the lives of so many women and girls who adore who you are.

But what about Superbowl 2013? I was really excited to see you command such a large stage. But unfortunately, I was distracted by the black-lacey thing that you (barely) clad yourself in. When I wanted to hear you sing I ended up just wondering if you were wearing a doily, a leotard, or if that qualified as a dress. And I’m mom of three who loves my husband. I had no interest in being distracted by your doily or what you weren’t hiding underneath it. I ended up wondering if any man even knew you were singing–as drawn in as they must have been by your doily. You became just a doily, no longer a woman who has life and opinions and intelligence and power to give to the world.

What made me most sad was that you squandered your influence. In a moment that you could choose to let any of your numerous talents shine, you went with the obvious. You flaunted yourself as a sexual object for the world to see. And hey–I bet that moment felt really powerful. In some ways, it was your moment to be glorifed and worshipped. But allowing your body to become the object of desire strips away who you really are–that person who is so gifted, so influential, so talented, and so beautiful. No one noticed your beauty that night, they noticed your booty. I guess that’s what you wanted. But to what end (no pun intended)? Seriously, to what end? I wondered where that Superbowl performance would lead, and I guess I found out.

Because last night at the Grammy awards, you ditched the lace doily and went straight for the thong. Because that’s the thing with using sex as power–it’s like a drug. Once you give away some of it, you need more of it to get the same rush. It’s a never-ending game where you always lose. So last night, while you rotated over a chair dressed in a thong, I couldn’t hear your voice. I couldn’t really take in your talent. I didn’t get to appreciate you for the amazingly gifted, powerful, influential woman that you are. Instead, I watched as you showed women and girls all around the world what to do when you are at the height of your influence– become a sex object. You didn’t make the show about you–the real you–you made it about the object you were creating. And so when your husband Jay-Z came on the stage, I was hoping he might throw his jacket over your bare rear and usher you off stage. I was hoping that he might not want the rest of the world to see what is intimate and private and meant for you two. Instead, he slapped your butt and you turned around and hid your face and swayed around to the tune of his music. You became his ornament. You. Singer. Songwriter. Actress. Talent. Beautiful. Smart. Successful. You became his ornament.

So, I know there’s more to the story, about where you’ve been and where you want to be. I bet you might think I’m taking this too seriously–that it’s just a show, it’s just entertainment.

But it’s not. It’s you, the essence of your soul and ALL the things you can be that are eclipsed by this one thing. And I think there are going to be some parts that you regret. Your beauty is powerful and your sexuality is a gift that God’s given all of us as women. But when we use it that way, we cheapen it, we objectify ourselves, and we sacrifice our souls on the alter of temporary adoration. And when the lights fade and it’s just you, in a thong, in your dressing room, you are going to wonder what you’ll possibly have to do to top that, and I’m sad for you because you keep giving away pieces of your soul that are far too precious to waste for such temporary, fleeting glory.

 

25 Comments

  • Angie says:

    I can’t help but wonder what her momma (Beyonce is from the South y’all) thinks of her “bootylicious” daughter spread out on a chair in her barely there undies? Do you think her daddy watched that performance with his buddies proudly bragging, “That’s my girl!”? That’s where my twisted mind goes. Loved your perspective!

    • Jenna says:

      I think her parents are the reason why she is that way!

      • Nicole Unice says:

        Jenna, I don’t necessarily agree (although we are all deeply impacted by our parents at some level) nor would I make a statement on what Beyonce has experienced or why exactly this is the way she is pursuing her career. The post is meant to open all of us up to reflecting on our own sexuality and the use (and misuse) of the power and “glory” that comes from allowing ourselves to be objectified with the way we might present ourselves.

    • creativebug says:

      I believe that her mother is the one who makes her outfits!

  • Libby says:

    I like your message but Beyoncé has been cheapening herself for over a decade. I’ve followed her career closer than most since I was 13 and she played at the Arkansas State Fair with the original Destiny’s Child when they had just release their first single “no no no” which was all about convincing a man to sleep with them. No means yes, what a great message. Oh and she married a man who became mainstream with his song, “big pimpin.” She doesn’t not lose any sleep at night over her outfits or lyrics.

    • Elsie says:

      Ummm…Libby I agree with most of what you say but I think you may want to check the lyrics of ‘no no no”…it is not about convincing a man to sleep with you…it is about a girl asking a guy why he seems to act like he likes her one minute (that’s the yes bit) and then pretends he doesn’t when his friends are around (that’s the no).

  • Shante says:

    You just jealous of how fabulous Beyonce is. She is a mother, wife, and beautiful black woman who can do what she pleases. She don;t need to answer to you or anybody else. Quit hating on her.

    • Nicole Unice says:

      I do think Beyonce is fabulous! She definitely can do what she pleases. But we all have influence–some more than others–and I believe that when you are given that kind of placement, you become a statement. Perhaps Beyonce loves her performance and would see it much differently. I would love to hear her take on it (if that conversation was possible)! She might feel that was an empowering performance. My point was that when sexuality is flaunted and put forth in the way that she chose in these performances, most men (and many women) lose the rest of her in the at best distracting and at worst objectifying of her body. I see the influence of these kinds of things in the way young women might portray themselves on social media, putting forth an image that leads with sexuality that I believe cheapens the experience of intimacy and closeness that sex is designed for.

  • Samantha says:

    Maybe we should discuss the real problem: women like you. Women who teach young girls they need to cover themselves up instead of teaching young men to respect women regardless of their appearance. Because a person’s appearance does not dictate who they are as a person. Wearing sexy outfits does not constitute what a woman’s character is compromised of nor does it make her less worthy of respect. Instead, why not try preaching the oldie but goodie; it’s what’s on the inside that counts. Because it is.
    Beyonce is a wonderful person and a great role model for young girls not because of what she wears, but because she is kind to people. She is a great mother. She is a faithful and loyal wife. And her music focuses on female empowerment – even when women like you continue to support the oppression of women with your misguided moral judgments. YOU are the problem, women like Beyonce are the solution.

    • Kay says:

      Samantha,
      You have a very interesting way of thinking. I don’t say I can agree with it. Why should it be the guy’s job to respect the way we dress? I mean, if we’re all waling around half naked, why should they even bother to respect us? It’s not their job to take responsibility for us by looking away or ridding their mind of dirty thoughts. Its our own responsibility. I don’t know about you but I’m not down with letting a guy take responsibility for my life and my actions, like you’re saying we should.

    • Marie says:

      I very much agree, Samantha.

      I think it’s sad that because she was in as you [Nicole] call it, a thong, that you “couldn’t hear her voice” and “couldn’t take in her talent”. What does that say about you or anyone who can’t look past a someone’s exterior to find [in this case] the artistic expression? (And side note-why would any performer want to make the show about the “real them”? They are there to be a performer and save the real stuff for when the public isn’t invading their privacy.)

      Obviously we all have our own opinion of talent, expression, real-vs-performance; But so many are teaching young girls to be ashamed of their body and sexuality which only has negative connotations in the long run.

    • Kamille says:

      Actually, this is more of a problem in my mind http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/ellie-slee/beyonce-feminist-drunk-in-love-lyrics_b_4676557.html when Beyonce uses her clout to sing the anti-feministic, misogynistic lyrics of her husband. This is far worst than her showing her body off in my mind. Role model, please no.

  • Boom. You nailed it, Nicole. And very articulately I might add.

  • Gabby Smith says:

    Ms. Nicole,

    Sorry if the Ms. offends but it’s a holdover from childhood. The things you said were awesome. I didn’t so much mind the Superbowl performance other than I kept saying, “did she sing anything” because I thought she just danced around. When I read the “you became his ornament” part I thought that’s it. I realized that it completely summed up what I was thinking. I realized that the Grammy performance wasn’t for me because I’m not a man nor a lover of women. Thanks for writing this; sums up my thoughts so nicely.

    Have a great one,
    Gabby

  • THANK YOU. bold, beautiful words, nicole. bless you.

  • matthew says:

    All you women love to rip at other women. Did you miss the song where beyonce talks about trying to be pretty and she tells people to focus on their soul, or when she tells people how females should feel empowered in flawless, or when she is a mom with blue. You folks see what you want and apparently you see shame in yourself as if you’re not a sexual being. Maybe if you were empowered you can be all God made you to be and display it without a care of others limitations.

  • […] side are those who felt the performance perpetuated female objectification. Christian blogger Nicole Unice noted that after Jay-Z joined Beyoncé on stage, she merely functioned as his "ornament" […]

  • […] side are those who felt the performance perpetuated female objectification. Christian blogger Nicole Unice noted that after Jay-Z joined Beyoncé on stage, she merely functioned as his “ornament” […]

  • Jennifer says:

    WOW…you ladies and gents who think parading around half naked is empowering need to reaccess. I am all for being in touch with your sexuality but you don’t have to wear “next to nothing ” to do so. I agree with Nicole. Her talent is lost when the focus is her thong. To parade around half dressed diminishes all of the powerful messages Beyoncé is sending out to young girls and women. It is a blatant contradiction.

  • Deep says:

    But she doesn’t market herself as a gospel artist so why are u listening and commenting on secular music

  • mary says:

    Keep it up gal! I love your boldness, saying it as is.
    But it does happen to many of us when we are empty inside. We do all sorts of things to be recognized outwardly. How sad.

  • […] yall, I miss you and I promise my Beyonce post wasn’t the last thing I’m ever going to write. It’s just, well, life picked up […]

  • Well said Nicole!! I think many of us feel the same way about the thoughts you posted but didn’t know how to word it. It is VERY sad to see how women are objectifying themselves today.

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