…Inside The Black Man's World


March 8, 2012

The Prerogative to be Provocative

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Written by: sgaither
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Toni Braxton

So last weekend I made it to church after missing a few Sundays. Half an hour in, everything is going lovely–the choir is sounding great, the Spirit is moving–picture perfect. Then we get to the part of the service where it’s time to give the offering and everyone walks down the aisle. Now I must confess, this is generally one of my favorite times of the service as it basically transforms the center of the aisle into the runway. Amidst the usual collection of over-sized Zoot Suits and antenna-like headgear, one outfit stuck out. This young lady had a pair of skin-tight leggings and a dress/blouse that hit mid-thigh, if that. Even more shocking than the length of her outfit was the fact that she was followed closely behind by a Brother that was apparently her man.

This is not to degrade the young lady nor speculate about her spiritual level with God. Self admittedly, I’m in no position to judge that. My first reaction was to question why her significant other would step out in public with her dressed so inappropriately. Understanding that everyone has their own definition of “inappropriate” I decided to open a dialogue with a few of my boys. The question I posed: Would you date or enter a serious long-term relationship with someone who consistently dresses provocatively?

To a man, they all answered a resounding: NO!

One of them put it like this: “If I can’t take you to the places that I like to go, such as church or even a nice restaurant without feeling awkward, we can’t have anything serious.”

Some females reading this may have a problem with a male addressing this issue, but this principle applies to both genders. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve observed a well put together young lady out with a ‘manchild’ wearing his pants sagging, and wondered what the hell could their connection be! As I said earlier, everyone has their own definition of what constitutes inappropriate dress attire.

As a man, I can definitely appreciate seeing a little leg here, a little thigh there and some cleavage on the side every now and then, but there is a time and a place for that sort of thing. Done too often or in the wrong setting it, can be a problem. My mother once told me that when a woman consistently dresses in tight revealing clothing, she’s definitely seeking out attention from men. Granted, no one wants a woman that no other man wants, but no sane man wants a woman he’s got to constantly worry about.

…everything that looks good to you ain’t good for you!

Perhaps the gentleman who escorted the young lady saw nothing wrong with her outfit. Perhaps such attire attracted him to her in the first place. If that’s the case, he can’t really say much because you can’t expect a person to change just because you’re dating them. All I can say is this: When it comes to relationships, what you see is what you’re going to get, so choose wisely and don’t ignore the cover of the book you decide to take home. As the old saying goes, everything that looks good to you ain’t good for you!

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About the Author

Award-winning college journalist. Serial Blogger. Old School R&B fanatic. Stonecold Gentleman.




  1. Michelle

    This is so very true!!! I would tell my son the same thing. As a black woman we love to be and feel sexy, but there is a such thing as Classy with a strong sex appeal to your man …it took me a while to learn this but I have and I thank God Almighty my husband stuck by me..Be Easy peeps

  2. Desia

    I knew a young woman who was very attractive, but always had her ass or titties on display. One day I asked her why she dressed that way ALL the time. She told me that it was her boyfriend’s preference. It made him feel Extra Mandingoish when everyone (men and women) would drool over his girl. Granted, they were in their very early 20′s, so maybe he has changed his views now, but I always found it interesting that some guys’ egos are directly connected to their women’s level of desirability. Just as I’ve always wondered what kind of guy falls deeply in love with a stripper? Just things that make me wonder

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