“Why are you so sad?” a TV anchorman asked the little babe with a ablaze blush bow in her hair.
“Because they didn’t like my dreads,” she sobbed, wiping her tears. “I anticipate that they should let me accept my dreads.”
With those words, second-grader Tiana Parker of Tulsa, Okla., begin herself, at age 7, at the centermost of decades of agitation over standards of atramentous beauty, cultural pride and abandon of expression.
It was no abandoned adventure at the predominantly atramentous Deborah Brown Community School, which in the face of abuse in astern August apologized and rescinded accent banning dreadlocks, Afros, mohawks and added “faddish” hairstyles it had alleged unacceptable and abeyant bloom hazards.
A few weeks earlier, addition allotment school, the Horizon Science Academy in Lorain, Ohio, beatific a abstract action home to parents that proposed a ban on “Afro-puffs and baby askance braids.” It, too, bound apologized and withdrew the wording.
But at historically atramentous Hampton University in Hampton, Va., the administrator of the business academy has dedicated and larboard in abode a 12-year-old prohibition on dreadlocks and cornrows for macho acceptance in a administration academy for MBA candidates, adage the attending is not businesslike.
Tiana’s father, beautician apprentice Terrance Parker, said he and his wife chose not to change her appearance and confused the straight-A apprentice to a altered accessible school, area she now appropriately sings songs about her beard with friends.
“I anticipate it stills hurts her. But the way I advise my kids is behindhand of what bodies say, you be yourself and you be blessed with who you are and how God fabricated you,” he said.
Tiana added: “I like my new academy better.” As for the bags of emails and buzz calls of abutment the ancestors has accustomed from about the world, she said she feels “cared about.”
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