Last week, in need of a birthday card, I perused the offerings at my local drug store. I noted how many cards were illustrated with cherubic, little, white girls–all curls and blue eyes, surrounded by hearts and kittens and flowers. High up in the racks, I spied a sliver of brown skin and reached for it. This is what I found…

…a screw-faced, afroed, cursing black girl. On its own, the item from Carlton Cards is perhaps unremarkable, but in the context of all those other cards idealizing white girls as the embodiment of childhood innocence, sweetness and girlitude, it stinks.

Black women have long carried the burden of the neck-twisting, ball-busting, curse-you in-a-second, Sapphire stereotype. The card above is illustrative of how early our humanity and our femininity get stripped away…of why it’s so easy to demonize black women and girls…of why a missing 19-year-old Natalee Holloway gets wall-to-wall media coverage, but 15-year-old Enaesha Lattice Innis gets next to none.

The card demonstrates whom our society values and who it considered just a joke.

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  • chanela


  • binks

    Cute girl but that card isn’t a good look. I would much rather see a snarky remark on the card with her smiling…to me that would make my smile and laugh but yeah another day and another subliminal attack on black girls/women images…what else is new

  • Alexandra

    Yeah, even with the meanie face she’s still a cutie. That caption is horrible.
    If an equivalent for non-Black girls was found, it would still be an issue simply because of how people who are Black and Female are perceived; according to this card, age doesn’t even matter. She fits the demographic for the stereotype.

    What’s the name of company for the card? And who came up with the idea/how?

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