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  • Writer's pictureMocha Sprout

Mommy, Mommy Why Me….Even As Mythical Creatures Black Girls Can’t “Just Be”.

"She is a mermaid but approach her with caution. Her mind swims at a depth most would drown in." ~J. Iron

Surprise, joy, love, anger, disgust, rejection, sadness…these are a few of the many emotions expressed over the last week around a less than two-minute clip on YouTube. The controversy surrounds the release of Disney’s trailer for “The Little Mermaid.” The Mermaid Ariel is black with red locks. Recreating Ariel from the original character, who was white, has many in their feelings. Both good and bad. YouTube received 1.5 million dislikes two days after the trailer was released. As I read the comments and saw the slew of backlash on social media, I struggled for a way to put it in words. I begin to contemplate; I wonder what Gen Z black girls would say to the many reactions. How would they convey their emotions? I imagine the conversation would be something like the following.

Mommy, Mommy…Why Me?

Mommy, mommy… why me?

All I want is to just be.

I set out on a magical journey in the ocean water.

Yet, for some…even that is a bother.

Why does “me” being represented create such chatter?

All I want to do is matter.

I speak affirmations to build my mentality.

Yet, America continuously reminds me of my reality.

Aren’t mermaids supposed to represent divine femininity?

Yet, for me, it created a space where there is no affinity.

Mommy, mommy…why me?

All I want is to just be.

Isn’t the Little Mermaid a fairy tale?

Yet, some are intimidated and ask how dare I prevail.

I had my one opportunity to dream.

Yet, the reactions of some made me scream.

I am in the early years of my life.

Yet, I’m reminded that in my latter years, there will be strife.

Strife because of my skin color.

Strife because I choose to no longer be a buffer.

Mommy, mommy… why me?

All I want is to just be.

Stranger things have happened in this world.

Yet, so much negative energy is put into a mermaid being a black girl.

Half woman, half fish, swimming in a world under the sea is my prerogative.

How is that not positive?

I wish the world could see

I’m not a strange anomaly.

I’m just a black girl envisioning myself in an underwater world.

Mommy, mommy….why me?

All I want is to just be.

Ariel is a mythical creature.

But even in that role, I cannot be a feature.

Where is my place in this world?

All I want is to embrace being a black girl.

Myth or reality.

I want everyone to realize my substantiality.

Walt Disney…thank you for the moment.

I hate that your effort for representation was overshadowed by the opponent.

Mommy, mommy… why me?

All I want is to just be.

Dr. Misty D. Freeman

September 18, 2022

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