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Published On: Sun, Aug 3rd, 2014

Mississippi student, Sierra Mannie, defends attack on ‘White Gay Men’ who steal ‘black culture’

A black female student at the University of Mississippi has sparked controversy with her article dressed to “White Gay Men” claiming they are taking “black female culture.” The article then was republished by TIME magazine and she even took to CNN to discuss her point of view.

Scott Don Lemon CNN interview Sierra Mannie race vs gay menSenior Sierra Mannie argued in The Daily Mississippian that “white gays” are claiming her culture and need to stop since “[b]lack people can’t have anything.”

Her article, named “Dear white gays,” declares that white gay men are overtaking black female culture. Mannie writes that she doesn’t care “how cute you think it is to call yourself a strong black woman, who taught you to twerk, [or] how funny you think it is to call yourself Quita or Keisha.”

“[Y]ou are not a black woman, and you do not get to claim either blackness or womanhood. It is not yours. It is not for you.”

“At the end of the day, if you are a white male, gay or not, you retain so much privilege. What is extremely unfairly denied you because of your sexuality could float back to you, if no one knew that you preferred the romantic and sexual company of men over women.”

Mannie defended her article on CNN, claiming that she writes “about things that happened to me, personal experiences that have happened to me.” Writer H. Alan Scott penned a response, acknowledging the struggles of black women, but also pointing out white gay men do know what discrimination is like, even if sexuality isn’t as obvious a trait as race. He argues no one’s stealing anyone’s culture, just that people are able to appreciate each other’s culture in the melting pot that is America.

With Don Lemon on CNN Scott argued that gay men love the “affirming awesomeness of black women,” but Mannie said it frustrates her that gay men always come up to her and call her “Shanaynay” with a kind of stereotypical accent. Lemon jumped in to say, “You may think that it’s something that is funny and cute… but what you’re doing is almost a minstrel show in some ways.”

Scott shot back that black people are “perpetuating the stereotype” with these cultural offenses. Mannie argued that “certain things do belong to people of certain cultures,” but Lemon pushed back a bit by saying, “People don’t own certain things because they are of a certain color.”

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About the Author

- Roxanne "Butter" Bracco began with the Dispatch as Pittsburgh Correspondent, but will be providing reports and insights from Washington DC, Maryland and the surrounding region. Contact Roxie aka "Butter" at [email protected] ATTN: Roxie or Butter Bracco

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  1. No More Mannie says:

    Please stop giving this child any more press. Her 15 minutes of infamy are long gone. The original article was idiotic (and too bad because she had some valid points). But if her view on black female culture is limited to twerking and ebonics then she should spend some time at museums and understand what gifts her ancestors have truly bestowed upon us all. Fight for what is REAL culture, don’t argue for separatism and limit an an entire race to simply being stereotypes.

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