The “bonnet chronicles” continue as the argument on whether or not this age-old style of protective hair coverings should be seen or worn in public. The debate has drawn mixed feelings from social media users. Many feel as though bonnets should be left at home as it appears “ghetto” and not presentable. Others don’t mind at all and go at lengths with their public display of bonnets. For Grammy-award-winning comedian and actress Tiffany Haddish, she leans on the side of keeping them in-house, saying it’s all about “respecting yourself.”
When Mo’Nique shared a recent experience of what she likened to a parade of bonnet-wearing women in Atlanta’s international airport, she felt the need to “lovingly encourage” her “sweet babies” out of the practice. However, she said that the scene she witnessed was not the first time that the comedian has seen such a sight. “I’ve been seeing it not just at the airport. I’ve been seeing it at the store, at the mall … ” she said in her now-viral Instagram clip. “When did we lose our pride in representing ourselves? When did we slip away of let me make sure I’m presentable when I leave my home?”
Not too long before the Precious actress shared her sentiments, the ever-so outspoken rapper, Plies, hopped on to Twitter to unleash his opinions on what he considers to be the “female durag,” sparking a huge debate. “It Should Be A Law U Shouldn’t Be Able To Wear Bonnets No More Then 6 Feet OutsIde Your Residence,” the rapper tweeted. “They Wearing These MTFers In The Airport Like They A Louis Vuitton Bucket Hat!!!!!”
The “Shawty” rapper then made sure to note that he was not trying to be in women’s business per se, rather, he viewed bonnets as something that was only worn when women sleep. Both Plies and Mo’Nique, who is clearly a woman, share the same perspective and caught about the same amount of flack for sharing their opinions, although many agreed.
It Should Be A Law U Shouldn’t Be Able To Wear Bonnets No More Then 6 Feet OutsIde Your Residence. They Wearing These MTFers In The Airport Like They A Louis Vuitton Bucket Hat!!!!! Ain’t In Y’all Business Ladies I Just Thought They Was Suppose To Be To Sleep In!!! 😂— Plies (@plies) May 20, 2021
Those that found fault in what Plies and Mo’Nique said felt as though once again, women were being policed at large for their public appearances. For too long, women have been subjected to others’ opinions on what is deemed respectable or presentable in public, and have quite frankly had enough.
However, stepping up in their defense was Chad Ochocinco, whose public display of affection for women in bonnets has long been a thing. According to him, there’s nothing better than seeing “a woman in a bonnet in public with a wife beater & those rubber shower slides with a fresh pedicure.” In the past he firmly stated on Twitter, “If I see you in public with a bonnet on don’t curve me, I’m here to love you in your simplest form.”
Joining the conversation now is Girls Trip star Tiffany Haddish, who agrees with her fellow comedian sister. Haddish had a recent zoom conversation with a journalist by the name of D’Shonda Brown for Hello Beautiful, where she voiced her opinion while speaking on body positivity and hypersexuality.
“Whatever I’m comfortable in is what I’m most likely to wear,” she said. “Now some people do be wearing things that I don’t think they should be wearing. Mo’Nique was talking about the bonnets in the airport and all that stuff, and I agree with her on that. You spend all this money for an airplane ticket, you might as well get dressed up because you never know.”
“I was always taught to make sure your drawers are clean and you look decent,” Haddish continued. “Especially when you’re moving and traveling around because if something happens to you when they got to cut your clothes off, you want to be decent. It’s about respecting yourself. I ain’t going to lie to you, I run out in the streets in my bonnet sometimes just to run to the store real quick but we got to have some dignity in ourselves. When you dress a certain way, it tells people how you feel about yourself.”
Haddish’s comments brought fans out who felt as though she should not speak on “presentable appearances.” Some fans were quick to remind her of the time she appeared on the red carpet for the 2019 Met Gala with a purse filled with fried chicken because there was “not enough food” the last time she attended.
Other fans commented “Miss Tiffany you barely look decent everyday💀, sit tf down,” and “Not listening to nobody that always wanna play a “loud & ghetto” black girl role in movies.” Another wrote, “Black women do what you want to do , please.”
Also in the same conversation, Tiffany spoke on her journey to falling in love with herself and body, as well as being comfortable in her skin. “I stopped caring about beauty standards probably like seven or eight years ago, but then things take off and you have to do the red carpet. When you see me on regular days, I have no makeup, I‘m comfortable in basic.”
Elsewhere she added, “If you just walk outside and look around your community, you’ll see that a lot of people are just like you. You’re okay the way you are. If you got a man, you’re fine until he tells you otherwise, and still he better watch what he says. As long as you feel comfortable inside this meat suit, this your meat suit. God gave you one. You decide how to use it. If you feel comfortable in it, then rock with it. If you don’t feel comfortable, make changes. I would suggest you do active work first.”