Mo’nique Tells Black Women ‘Y’all Are My Damn Business’ After Being ‘Canceled’ For Telling Woman To Stop Wearing Bonnets & Pajamas In Public

Call it a bonnet if you’d like. Maybe you prefer to utilize a head-tie or scarf. This year, we were introduced to the term “helmet of salvation”. Call it whatever you’d like, as long as you apparently are not seen in public with the protective hair covering on your person. At least, that is what the debate on social media has been as of late. Joining in the conversation was comedian and actress Mo’nique, who had much to say on the subject. Her response brought forth a hugely mixed reaction from social media users, with some agreeing and others against “Auntie Mo’nique.”

Taking to Instagram in a 5-minute video addressing her “sweet babies”, the Oscar-winning actress prepped her follower for a message that she says took her quite some time to prepare what she wanted to say as she did not it to be received “from a place of judgment and that I’m saying it from a place of love.”

Encouraging her followers in the caption to “represent yourself with pride,” she began to share a recent experience that she encountered while traveling through Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport which prompted her to spew some “real s**t” to her followers. “I saw so many of our young sistas in head bonnets, scarves, slippers, pajamas, blankets wrapped around them, and this is how they’re showing up to the airport,” the Precious star added. “And I’ve been seeing it not just at the airport, I’ve been seeing it at the store, at the mall. And the question that I’m having to you, my sweet babies, is when did we lose pride in representing ourselves?”

She continued, “When did we step away [from] ‘Let me make sure I’m presentable when I leave my home? Let me make sure I’m representing the family I created so that if I’m out in the street I look like I have pride in myself?’” Mo’nique then asked her “nieces” a simple question. “All I’m saying is could you please comb your hair?”

“And if you don’t want to comb your hair,” she continued, “they’ve got enough s**t out here now baby where you can style yourself up and look like you have pride. I’m not saying you don’t have pride, but the representation that you’re showing, someone would have to ask you to know that you had it.”

Wrapping up her bonnet-flavored speech, she offered what she felt was more encouragement, topped off with an endearing warning. “If you look like you don’t give a damn, how you gonna be treated?” she said. “If I see you in the streets, in the airport, in the Walmart and you got a bonnet on, and you got slippers on, and you looking like what the f–, auntie gon’ tap you and say ‘hey baby girl, show what you’re worth.’”

As stated before, mixed reactions followed her video. Some agreed with the Parkers star with comments like, “Auntie that came straight from the heart and I did not detect one lie!! We needed this!!!” Another chimed in saying, “Thanks for caring enough to tell the truth….and not be scared of losing followers. A true Queen indeed.”

There were those that felt Mo’nique’s message was filled with “compassion” and care, telling their own accounts of their family upbringing as it pertains to looking presentable. One user admitted that the actress changed her viewpoints on wearing a bonnet in public. “I love you Mo,” they began. “Before hearing you so lovingly explain it, my thought was we should be able to rock whatever and however but you are absolutely correct. Thank you for helping me change course in such a loving way.”

Others offered up criticism in Mo’nique’s direction. One user commented, “Chile Mo’Nique got a whole open relationship I’m not finna listen to her about a bonnet.” Another mentioned “All due respect auntie….but you as a public figure with this robe on on the internet would be deemed as inappropriate and ghetto by these same standards, no? Serious question. I just feel like we need to kind our business…and stop forcing Black women to perform ALL THE TIME.”

Mo’nique heard all of the comments directed towards her, including those that told her to “mind her business.” With that, she addressed them in a lengthy video where she spoke on those that felt that she should be canceled. “Some of ya’ll told me ‘Imma cancel yo a**,'” she says. “Some of ya’ll told me to mind my gotd**n business. You are my gotd**nm business. You are my business,” she tells her followers. “And if more of us got involved with us [then] maybe our community would stand stronger.

In another Instagram video, Mo’nique further addressed those who felt offended by her previous video. Coming this time with an “attitude of appreciation and gratitude”, she revealed that her own experiences with both Patti Labelle and Margaret Avery impacted her in such a way that got her together after they, well, got her together.

“I’m glad those two women loved me enough that they would go out of their way to talk to me in a way that aunties, mamas, big sisters talk to their little sisters, nieces, grandbabies, daughters,” said Mo’Nique. “I was grateful for that because it allowed me to think about things differently. Never once did I think those women were trying to be offensive.”

She then mentions that she is “ok with” those who were rubbed the wrong way by what she said, and she will continue to love them. Mo’nique also touches on the attempts to cancel her, to which she says “they’ve tried that, and I’m still here to let ya’ll know I love you and ain’t nothing you can do about it.”

“So if you’re offended because I’ve said to you, ‘You’re a queen,’ and ‘You’re beautiful,’ and when you wear that damn bonnet, and your pajama pants. and your slippers anywhere you go, don’t you know you block your beauty’? Let your beauty be seen and be shown,” she continued. “See remember the time we were raising hell because they didn’t want us to wear our natural hair, They didn’t want us to do the things we wanted to do with our natural beauty? Now, why ever would you block it? So I am unapologetic about what I said because I said it with nothing but love, and I said it with no judgment. For the sisters that got it, I’m glad. For the ones that didn’t, I’ll wait.”

About Jamari Williams

Jamari Williams is a seasoned journalist who works mainly in the fields of music, film and television. Jamari is a Morehouse graduate who began writing at the age of 12 and have wrote for many new media companies.

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