“It was tough to take that criticism.”
Back in 1983, Vanessa Williams made background when she ended up being the very first Black female crownedMiss America Although it was a big win for her, she remembers encountering a great deal of objection from both the Black as well as White neighborhoods in America.
“I was not seen as a 20-year-old, who is a junior in college,” she remembered on A&E’s The Table Is Ours podcast. “I was seen as a symbol, but also seen as a Black woman, and [I was] also seen as someone who was supposed to represent the American beauty.”
“And there are a lot of folks that did not believe that having brown skin and being a Black woman represented the Miss America ideal,” Williams proceeded.
Things obtained so negative that Williams remembers having “sharpshooters” at her homecoming ceremony.
“There were sharpshooters on the top of [the] roofs of my hometown, just because of the threats that were against me because of who I was,” she stated. “I had death threats.”
However, the most awful risks she obtained were the ones that originated from her “own people.”
“Not only was I getting attacked from White folks saying she doesn’t represent us, but some Black folks [said], ‘Oh they only picked her cause she’s [light-skinned and has] light eyes,’” Williams remembered. “[They] kind of dismissed my talent, my intellect, and my achievement. So that was probably more hurtful.”
Looking back, Williams stated it was “tough to take that criticism” from the Black area. But many thanks to her neglecting “a lot” of unfavorable discuss “social media,” she’s discovered to approve her win totally.
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