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12 #blackboyjoy Moments That Have Us Loving The Men In Our Lives

I always seek out moments that keep me amazed at our resiliency.

Culture & Entertainment

As a full advocate of the progression of black people, I always seek out moments that keep me amazed at our resiliency.

I recently read an article that discussed the death of Kobe Bryant in relation to the vulnerable side of black men that we often don't get to see. And with the media attaching us to negativity as often as they can, as a black woman on an empowerment platform, I accept full responsibility in welcoming any moments in the culture that eases that image.

In, comes along the phenomenally revolutionary hashtag #blackboyjoy.

Coined by The Root, and made popular by the #blackboyjoy king himself, Chance the Rapper, the hashtag became a centralized hub of black boys and men who were happily being themselves outside the confines of the media's portrayal of gangsters, criminals, or the latest victims of police brutality.

I decided to list 12 moments where #blackboyjoy had us smiling ear to ear.

Enjoy!

Matthew Cherry Wins Oscar And Takes De'Andre Arnold To The Ceremony

Matthew Cherry, a former NFL player, decided to write a short film titled Hair Love about the trials and tribulations of combing his daughter's hair. This film took off from there and remained highly-rooted for with the help of a manifested vision.

Cherry went on to win the Oscar, joining the ranks of the likes of other former athletes, such as Kobe Bryant, who also retired and explored the film industry.

On top of his Oscar win, Cherry took DeAndre Arnold, the young teen from Houston who was told he could not participate in graduation due to his locs, as his guest.

As our sis, Shellie R. Warren put it, "Matthew A. Cherry reminds us that celebrating Blackness is always worth it."

Always.

William Bilal Plays The Trombone Like You've Literally NEVER Heard Before

In 2016, William Bilal was at student in high school standing in the bleachers and playing his trombone during rehearsal. What was recorded became history, and 1.6 million views later, he continues to blow what seems like the entire internet's wig all the way back. The passion, the level of difficulty, and the effortless way he made his trombone sing—at THAT age—you just had to know that the ancestors were watching and losing their wigs too.

Bilal has since gone on to attend Benedict College in South Carolina, and has other (clearer) videos floating on worldwide web. But this is where it all started.

Sidebar: the song played is Al Jarreau's "Black and Blues", which is a very popular among HBCU marching bands.

Fair warning, you will not be able to watch this just once.

The Viral Black Man Skincare Thread

@SoOulzZz/Twitter

It all started when Twitter user @SoOulzZz said: "Let's start a thread of black men doing skincare here pls."

And boy, did Twitter deliver.

What followed were men openly sharing their skincare routines, offering tips, and as an amazing turn of events, allowed the ladies to just sit back and watch in awe.

#skinisin

The High Fives Of A Lifetime

I mean...come on!

Men Openly Show Off Their Love On Twitter

Twitter user, @KeyKey_Shepard, asked Black men to "upload a picture of the Black woman that you're treating right, having sex with on the regular, and making happy." Hundreds of men of all ages blessed our feeds with a tribute to their partners that will give you all the feels.

"Say Less," one reader responded.

You have to see the best responses, they're hilariously sweet.

Everything About Shaquan Parson, Who Is An Entire Mood Every Time He Lands A Trick

Shaquan Parson is training and competing to be the best self-proclaimed power ranger in the game. The stunts, the tricks. Whew. You have to see for yourself.

But the best part (at times) isn't even the acrobats.

It's his reaction after each successful landing.

If you don't root for yourself, who else will?

The Top Quarterbacks in the NFL Are Black And ESPN Coins 2019 the #YearoftheBlackQB

In a notoriously...let's just say, “conservative"...league, for the first time ever, the most statically superior, and discussed, quarterbacks in the NFL were all black:

Patrick Mahomes

Russell Wilson

Lamar Jackson

Deshaun Watson

ESPN took notice and created the television special “Year of The Black Quarterback" with a panel of key components to commemorate.

Go crush the field in 2020, fellas!

Black Lawyers Casually Create A Multi-Million-Dollar Room

A group of Chicago lawyers were captured during their quarterly dinner to vent about their work, offer each other support, and to discuss ways in which they can use their platforms to move the culture forward. The magic came in them assembling in a room, and quietly creating a buying power larger than what we're often exposed to outside of athletes and entertainers—which is a celebration within itself.

I don't know about you guys, but all I see are successful black men smiling, laughing, and being carefree Wakandian Warriors. #kanyeshrug

A Couple Friends Enjoying A Quick Dance Battle

Sometimes, you just have to pull your friends into your silliness with you, and sometimes being black AF on dance cam is necessary. My mans, @neversayneveraj, is a legend at both.

A Young Prince Sings "Standby Me" For His Class

It was Mr Sorto's classroom's tribute to the late Ben E. King for their Black History Month performance. The moves, the commitment, and the microphone stand for him...omgggg.

The preciousness is too much to handle.

Send this baby some love, he did his parents and teacher proud!

*sings along*

This Guy Took An International Solo Trip And Had A Great Story To Tell

Vandyke’s entire trip was a wild ride of randomness, from renting his Airbnb for four nights for only $120, to hanging with locals, to surviving on $5, and being invited to his neighbor's 87th birthday party (who didn't speak a word of English). He truly had a trip to remember.

I personally read the full story in a travel group, but the photo caption details more. There's one thing for sure, he knows how to have a good time, regardless.

Live your best life, king!

A Head Football Coach Learning Chemistry For His Students

Coach Darrell LeBeaux, Head Football Coach of Pleasant Grove High School in Birmingham, Alabama went the extra mile to literally re-learn the chemistry lesson of his player’s class. He was captured in full student mode—all while each of them were beaming in their magic.

This football season, Pleasant Grove went on to be ranked #1 in their region, and are nationally ranked as a program to look out for—and we can see why. We're forever rooting for any educator that shows a little more effort in developing young boys into men, through example.

Great job, Coach LeBeaux!

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When I was ten, my Sunday school teacher put on a brief performance in class that included some of the boys standing in front of the classroom while she stood in front of them holding a heart shaped box of chocolate. One by one, she tells each boy to come and bite a piece of candy and then place the remainder back into the box. After the last boy, she gave the box of now mangled chocolate over to the other Sunday school teacher — who happened to be her real husband — who made a comically puzzled face. She told us that the lesson to be gleaned from this was that if you give your heart away to too many people, once you find “the one,” that your heart would be too damaged. The lesson wasn’t explicitly about sex but the implication was clearly present.

That memory came back to me after a flier went viral last week, advertising an abstinence event titled The Close Your Legs Tour with the specific target demo of teen girls came across my Twitter timeline. The event was met with derision online. Writer, artist, and professor Ashon Crawley said: “We have to refuse shame. it is not yours to hold. legs open or not.” Writer and theologian Candice Marie Benbow said on her Twitter: “Any event where 12-17-year-old girls are being told to ‘keep their legs closed’ is a space where purity culture is being reinforced.”

“Purity culture,” as Benbow referenced, is a culture that teaches primarily girls and women that their value is to be found in their ability to stay chaste and “pure”–as in, non-sexual–for both God and their future husbands.

I grew up in an explicitly evangelical house and church, where I was taught virginity was the best gift a girl can hold on to until she got married. I fortunately never wore a purity ring or had a ceremony where I promised my father I wouldn’t have pre-marital sex. I certainly never even thought of having my hymen examined and the certificate handed over to my father on my wedding day as “proof” that I kept my promise. But the culture was always present. A few years after that chocolate-flavored indoctrination, I was introduced to the fabled car anecdote. “Boys don’t like girls who have been test-driven,” as it goes.

And I believed it for a long time. That to be loved and to be desired by men, it was only right for me to deny myself my own basic human desires, in the hopes of one day meeting a man that would fill all of my fantasies — romantically and sexually. Even if it meant denying my queerness, or even if it meant ignoring how being the only Black and fat girl in a predominantly white Christian space often had me watch all the white girls have their first boyfriends while I didn’t. Something they don’t tell you about purity culture – and that it took me years to learn and unlearn myself – is that there are bodies that are deemed inherently sinful and vulgar. That purity is about the desire to see girls and women shrink themselves, make themselves meek for men.

Purity culture isn’t unlike rape culture which tells young girls in so many ways that their worth can only be found through their bodies. Whether it be through promiscuity or chastity, young girls are instructed on what to do with their bodies before they’ve had time to figure themselves out, separate from a patriarchal lens. That their needs are secondary to that of the men and boys in their lives.

It took me a while —after leaving the church and unlearning the toxic ideals around purity culture rooted in anti-Blackness, fatphobia, heteropatriarchy, and queerphobia — to embrace my body, my sexuality, and my queerness as something that was not only not sinful or dirty, but actually in line with the vision God has over my life. Our bodies don't stop being our temples depending on who we do or who we don’t let in, and our worth isn’t dependent on the width of our legs at any given point.

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