Hair Shaming

Major cases of hair discrimination have extremely impacted the nation, causing the black community to take a stance. Former news anchor Brittany Noble Jones was fired after she displayed her “unprofessional” natural hair on live TV.

A news reporter explained to Noble Jones that her hair was equivalent to him throwing on a baseball cap to go to the grocery store; in other words, her hair was too inappropriate for the work setting. Noble Jones originally attempted to wear her natural hair in 2017, but she was later grilled about her hair being unprofessional; she even received insults from the corporate human resources department, which filed a complaint that her hair was “shaggy and unkempt.”

After giving birth to her son in 2018, Noble Jones asked for reasonable approval to wear natural hair by her news director, but a month after having the green light to do so, her news director pulled her into his office to criticize her hair again. She was told to change her hair back to the original because it ‘looked better.’

Since Noble Jones has been released from her position as a news reporter, her voice and her story have inspired many to speak their truths. An example is Andrew Johnson, a high school wrestler who was forced to cut his dreadlocks in order to participate in a wrestling match. Four matches prior to his regretful match, Johnson claimed that no referee had any issues with his hair, according to ABC News. After seeing the humiliating process of a referee cutting Johnson’s hair, angered parents and media labeled this as a racist act.

These situations were both forms of racism. People tend to think that racism is only defined by words or extreme violent actions. Though that’s partially true, racism is also portrayed in plenty of imaginable ways, with hair being a major factor. African-Americans need to be accepted in America without being discriminated against because of the hair they wear or the complexion of their skin. No person of color should feel embarrassed by the way they portray their naturality. Brown-skinned and black-skinned people should not have to live up to the expectations of what a caucasian man or woman looks like. Having the confidence to do what feels best in a person’s heart defines a beauty queen or a role model; having straight or long hair does not. Discrimination is continuing to divide races when there should be unity and equality.