"I'm a star"
By now, it's old news. Sometime on Saturday, 7 February -- US time -- Beyoncé snatched her fanbase and most breathing black women bald. Everybody was minding their own business aka anticipating what Beyoncé would do at the superbowl the next day when she decided to slay us.

By now, you know that Beyoncé released a song and music video that stinks with Southern US black pride. You know that the next day she took to the Superbowl stage accompanied by 30 black women all dressed in black and berets, bringing to mind Black Panthers. You know her white audience was confused af and nobody actually cares. Shurrup, black women are talking about a black woman's art.




One of the more noted things about the video for Formation is that it features HRH Blue Ivy Carter looking like an angel. It's was even more incredible because Beyoncé sings that she likes her "baby hair with baby hair and afros" (zero copula) a clear clapback at the racists who were shocked a black couple's child looks like she is a black person. Let's not forget the black folk who love respectability so much that they were pressed because Blue Ivy's hair was left on her head to do its thing: flourish.

The most impactful part for me, a dead mother's child who loved me so much low self-esteem days (and depressive episodes and navigating ~life~ with mental illness) makes me feel like, "wtf, have you forgotten who you are?" is that Beyoncé has a first-born daughter, and heir, in a video where she sings:

I dream it, I work hard, I grind 'til I own it, I twirl on them haters.
Mind you, Blue Ivy will likely never have to work a day in her life to survive. Blue Ivy will likely never have to work a day in her life to survive. Beyoncé has worked most of her life for the dream she had to entertain and has, along the way, become one of the most well-paid and influential black women in the world. She has built that not only for herself but for her child as well. 



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I started living with my mother on a full-time basis the year I turned nine. It was a huge change, which, coupled with losing my father's father, turned my world on its head. In hindsight, there was a lot of readjusting for me. That was a hectic school year (fuck grade five, bruh) but one of the first lessons -- and love feelings -- I got for my mother was that she wanted my sister and I to thrive. She wanted us to have better and the first step, to her, was getting more education than she had had the opportunity to get. She wanted all the things for us, without reservation. And I know we were lucky to have her wish us well and love us in that way.

I don't imagine it's any different for rich women, or Beyoncé.  Beyoncé wants Blue Ivy to excel, to know that she can take on the world with her baby hair and afros. If you question  Beyoncé's feminism and overlook the actual work she has consistently done to empower women in her industry, imagine what it must feel like for her to know that all the firsts she has achieved will be easy for her child to attain should Blue Ivy so choose. Forget the doors she has pushed open for other women and imagine what all her work has done to better Blue Ivy's future, wherever it lies. But Blue Ivy never has to work to survive. 

This video is not the first time  Beyoncé has told Blue Ivy that she is a star and that there is nothing she can't do. That is what I found to be the glaring difference between Blue Ivy and the other little girls, not the calculated thing others have made the scene out to be. Beyoncé's child is likely used to cameras and mean-mugging and taking up space and filling it. The other little girls read a little awkward but still cute. Like maybe if they had been briefed better they also would have mean-mugged better. For Blue Ivy, it was possibly another home video with either of her parents saying "you don't want to smile Blue? Don't smile."

If this wasn't  Beyoncé's own "everything the sun touches is our kingdom," because mama and dad built it, then I don't know. Black children -- who aren't  Beyoncé's child -- don't get told this enough. They don't get told that as you are, you can do anything. We all know the "you will work twice as hard for half the recognition" talk, it's almost unspoken because the world is a mess. But there isn't enuf of "I'm a star/get what's mine"

But with this video, for a moment -- for eternity, really -- Beyoncé suspended all cruel reality, a black boy in a hoodie makes police surrender. Three little girls run around in what looks like a haunted home weighed down by all the history, the stories of all the black people who have lived there. She pointed to the moon and told her child she could get it if she works for it. If she grinds. And who better to tell a black child that? Miss Carter is in formation all right.

[Note: I began writing this in the last week of Feb but life.]