Today, ladies, women, girls and femmes, we’re going to talk about Dodai Stewart.
Who is Dodai Stewart, you ask? Well, I’ll tell you. She’s probably one of the most witty, consistently smart writers-editors on these interwebs. And she reps Jezebel.com to the death of her. I’ve never quite been able to figure out why the sister does this because, despite being founded by the legendary Anna Holmes (who for some reason doesn’t have the VIP check on Twitter), Jezebel isn’t the most diverse place. The whiteness is blinding, the snark borders on hipster obnoxious and topics are typically reminiscent of a sorority slumber party (think Delta Gamma, not Delta Sigma Theta).
But Dodai rides hard for Jezebel. And because she does, when word got out that former Hairpin editor Emma Carmichael would succeed Jessica Coen as the new Editor-in-Chief at Jez, folks were more shocked than Jay Z when Solange stole on him in the elevator or Lebron when he looked in the mirror and couldn’t find his hairline.
Seriously, by all accounts Dodai is that chick and didn’t deserve to be bypassed by someone with less experience and less talent. But I’m not surprised. Why? I don’t know Dodai personally, but I’ll tell you who I do know.
(Some) white folks.
Their shenanigans are legendary and they are notorious for pretending like they respect you until it really matters.
According to a write-up on Capital New York:
Coen, the site’s editor-in-chief, has had to split her time between her home in Chicago and Gawker Media’s New York office, and Stewart has frequently stepped in to manage Jezebel’s day-to-day operations.
According to one staffer, Stewart’s experience with the site and familiar presence made her the staff’s choice to replace Coen.
“From the get go, I think the staff was really supportive of Dodai, because she’s wonderful at her job and has been doing it for so long. I know we were all really rooting for her,” the person said.
As Capital first reported in May, Stewart was a leading internal candidate for the position. A source close to her said that she had met with Gawker editorial director Joel Johnson in late April to talk about taking the top job, and Johnson told Capital in May that she would make an excellent candidate.
For the next two months after the April meeting, she didn’t hear much—until June 24, the day Buzzfeed reported that Carmichael would be the site’s next editor. Two people close to Stewart said that she only learned that she was out of the running for the job minutes before the news of Carmichael’s hire was announced to staff and reported by Buzzfeed.
And to add insult to injury, some white feminists on social media said that the decision wasn’t racist at all. Oh, no. It was simply a “missed opportunity” on Jezebel’s part.
See how they do?
Dodai was over there at Jez leaning in like #SherylTaughtHer and they Miley Cyrus twerked all over her accomplishments.
They ain’t loyal.
This is why spaces exclusively for black women are so important. We have to build and appreciate our own. If we don’t, this kind of thing will happen over and over and over again. We shouldn’t have to consistently remind ourselves that “we is kind, we is smart and we is important” because we are, damn it. We. Are. And we deserve to be treated like more than the hired help.
So here’s to hoping that Dodai goes on to bigger and better opportunities.
And to Jezebel: Fuck yo couch.