Sheryl Underwood is a comedian. She earns a living making quips about everyday occurrences in an effort to make people laugh. Laughter and jokes are a proven tool to help disarm a difficult situation. So when it is a joke not funny? When it is just lazy, mean-spirited or plays on disparaging cultural misappropriations.
On a recent re-airing of The Talk on CBS, a show on which Sheryl is a co-host, in response to a statement that Heidi Klum saves the shorn afro-textured locks of her children Sheryl retorted:
Why would you save afro hair? You can’t weave afro hair, you never see us at the hair place going ‘Look, here, what I need here is, I need those curly, nappy beads’, that just seems nasty.
Deep sigh. Where shall we start.
It is too easy and simplistic to state the Sheryl Underwood hates herself. Not every weave/wig wearer is ashamed of themselves. But from her own words we can summarize that she does not find natural hair desirable. And that is okay, I don’t find her to be desirable either, but I find it extremely disheartening and irresponsible of her to denigrate wearers of natural hair on national television for the sake of a few chuckles.
Secondly, Sheryl you are just plain wrong. The same people you bought your silky wig from also sell curly/textured/afro hair too. Our hair is not just for mocking and clown wigs. Check out Heat Free Hair as just one example. The weave/wig industry is a billion dollar business, you really think they are ignoring potential profit? Nope.
Lastly, I just expect more from Sheryl; as a Black woman and as a human being. Throughout history Black women have been mocked for our physical appearance and to have another Black woman do the same thing is just hurtful. Afterall we are the same women who have supported your career through stand-up, movies, etc. My money is green and it spends, I am happy not to do so in your direction any longer.