Commentary: Why Tyga Is Wrong About Black Sexuality


Commentary: Why Tyga Is Wrong About Black Sexuality

No, not everything to us is about “smashing.”

Published February 21, 2015

The Internet broke down earlier this week when Khloe Kardashian tried to come for Amber Rose and got read for filth by the model. Why the drama? Rose had a serious problem with the fact that Kardashian’s youngest sister, Kylie, 17, was reportedly dating rapper Tyga, who happens to be 25 years old.

Now, Tyga who had been pretty quiet about this alleged relationship recently took to airwaves to defend himself. He told New York City's Power 105 morning show The Breakfast Club that he isn’t dating Kylie, he has been friends with the Kardashian family for years and that TMZ started these rumors.


And then in rare form, he blames Black folks for misinterpreting that relationship:

"In Black culture it's different. If you hang around somebody you're smashing them, white people, white culture, it's different. They really friends. It's genuine, it's different. How we think is a little different with our mentality. For me, if I'm friends with her and I'm friends with her sister, they h**s or we smashing them. And it's like, we really friends. I respect her mom, I know her whole family."


Now, I can understand his frustration — if he’s not dating Kylie (which I believe he is). I get not wanting to be called a “pedophile” or “nasty” by media outlets, Twitter, and plain old general society. But throwing Black folks and our sexuality under the bus to protect your reputation and an (ethnic) white girl’s chastity is pretty problematic, especially given the tumultuous history of how Black sexuality has been viewed over the years.

Since slavery, white folks have had this sick and twisted preoccupation with Black bodies and sexuality.

From the auction block to the plantation to Saartjie Baartman, Black women have been viewed as Godless animalistic hypersexual beings. It’s this belief that allowed for slave masters to justify raping their Black female slaves. Their thought: It was our fault; we were seducing them.

And this mentality hasn’t really gone away. From the Jezebel, to the video vixen, to “fast” girls, Black women continue to have a hard time reporting sexual assault because it’s believed that we can’t really be victims.

And Black men haven’t escaped this nonsense either. From the Mandingo to the Brutal Black Buck, there have been many pop culture caricatures over the years that have pushed forward this notion that Black men are well-endowed, hypersexual beings who cannot control their sexuality and/or whose main goal in life is to strip white women of their chastity by raping them.

And I hear some of you now, “Yeah, yeah, that was the past.”

But it’s not.

Right now, we are living in a midst of an AIDS epidemic where despite the fact that Black people report fewer risk factors than whites, folks continue to believe that if we could just get our sexuality on point, this disease wouldn’t be our problem. Meanwhile, we know that there is so much more at play around why we only make up only 12 percent of the U.S. population and more than 50 percent of all new infections.

And so it’s this understanding of that history that has me feeling a way about Tyga’s misguided comments. But what also saddens me is just how deep we as Black folks have internalized this racism.

To believe that white people’s sexuality and their ability to have boundaries and genuine friendships when we cannot is pretty self-hating. Not to mention, to believe that it takes being around folks like the Kardashians to bring out the civility in us is really some white savior nonsense that Tyga needs to unlearn. Because if Tyga truly believes that, what is he really saying about himself as a Black man?

And in no way am I saying that Black folks are perfect people.

I have often said that we have a lot of work to do when it comes to how Black men and women treat and relate to one another. But let me be clear: In no way does that mean that white folks are superior and don’t have their own issues.


I don’t know about you, but we have too much at stake for this nonsense. We are living in a world that clearly devalues Black lives and the last thing we need are people like Tyga giving white folks more ammunition to continue treating us like we are inferior.

The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of BET Networks. is your #1 source for Black celebrity news, photos, exclusive videos and all the latest in the world of hip hop and R&B music.

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(Photo: FayesVision/

Written by Kellee Terrell


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