This past week City Girls and Cardi B dropped the music video for their song “Twerk.” It was ratchet, it was raunchy, and I loved every minute of it.
Watching the video, all I saw — besides a whole lot of ass — was a plethora of beautiful Black women of all shapes and sizes twerking to their hearts’ content. It was Black women dancing and having fun, and not strictly for the male gaze. In fact, there wasn’t a single man to be seen on this magical island that City Girls and Cardi B created.
While there were a lot of women who felt the same way I did, someone had to be a Negative Nancy and find something “wrong” with the video. And that specific person is Lexy Panterra.
You’re probably thinking the same thing I did when I first heard about Panterra… who are you? With a quick google search, I found out that she shot to social media fame with her “twerkout” videos. She even starred in the first installment of Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween. But in 2019, she had the audacity to tweet “where were all the white girls in the music video?” After getting a ton of backlash, she decided to delete and replace it with a tweet with the same question, but changing “white” to “ethnicities.” And then, you guessed it, she deleted that one too.
What boggles my mind about her comment is that she is a white woman who made and continues to make money off a dance move that was specific to New Orleans Black culture. A dance that stayed predominantly in the Black community and wasn’t known by the mainstream media until white artists like Miley Cyrus and Iggy Azalea made it into a huge craze.
From our hairstyles to the way we dress and talk, white women are notorious for stealing what’s “cool” about the black culture. And it’s only when they do that that it goes from being ghetto and urban to something edgy. Panterra literally made a business off of something that was created by Black people. There is so much irony in her Twitter comment and I don’t even think she realizes it.
If the tables were turned, and there were a bunch of white women twerking in the video, would she feel the same way? Would she call out the fact that in this country, European standards of beauty are the ideal? My answer would be no. I’ve noticed that this is a common trend among some in the white community whenever there are a lot of PoC in a particular media space. They won’t admit it but it’s almost like they get uncomfortable with the fact that there are “too many” PoC.
Instead, they need to realize that not everything needs to fit into a white narrative or made for their consumption. And most importantly white people don’t have to be at the center of everything. The funny thing is, the music video was meant to be a contest with the winner walking away with $25,000. It just so happened that many of the finalists were Black. She made an issue out of something that wasn’t an issue to begin with. And by the way, there actually is a white girl in the video (just fast forward to 1:31).
And all tea, all shade. How are you really going to dance like this and call yourself a twerk instructor? Girl, bye.
She twerk like she doin the hokey pokey pic.twitter.com/ecVqP0Kfke
— ғιll тнaт вag υp, rιgнт neow! (@BarkyBoogz) January 17, 2019
Watch the full “Twerk” music video in all its glory here:
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Alysia Stevenson is a twenty-seven New York City transplant currently living in Florida with her boyfriend and three furbabies. When she’s not writing, you can find her watching beauty tutorials on Youtube or Parks and Rec for the millionth time.