Ida B. Wells Ain't Play That Shit


We all know that girl that don't play "that". And though, I don't think, we, as a Black community have determined what "that" is, we knew she wasn't playing it. The girl that's excellent in school, boisterous in the streets, has a good head on her shoulders, but can run with the best of them. We may be that girl. We may know that girl. We may even admire that girl. Enter Ida B. Wells. Today we celebrate the 153rd birthday of Ida Barnett Wells, Civil Rights Activist and Journalist, but I'm going to focus on a particular situation where Ida basically said, "yo, fuck outta here" like your resident homegirl from Brooklyn--bap! bap! bap!

I'll paint the picture for you: man is talking shit about something he has no business talking shit about. Ida said, if you don't sit yo corny lying ass down, man sits his corny ass down. Read more below:

"The minister boasted that he had married a Northern woman because they were more virtuous and more desirable wives. When some of Wells' admirers held her up as an example of virtuous Southern black womanhood, he countered that Wells' dismissal from her teaching position in Memphis was proof of her promiscuity. Wells, who had committed no impropriety but had lost her position by criticizing the school system for its substandard provisions for Black children, was livid. Having already left Vicksburg when she heard of the charge she made a special trip back to confront the minister. [oh hell nah] In a room full of male witnesses she challenged the preacher to repeat the derogatory remarks to her face. [what's that shit you was talkin'?] When he apologized she gave him a stern lecture on how Southern black women courageously fought off would-be white rapists, how they died rather than submit, and how they were still keeping themselves spotless and morally clean. [check ya self] She then made him sign a statement that his remarks on the character of Ida B. Wells were false and that he was recanting them in deference to her 'as a lady'".

Save the allusions to chastity as license to respect a woman, Wells was not playing. Not only did she

press homeboy, homeboy was a minister, a man of the cloth, a man who represented all that is well and good. Welp! Made no never mind, because Ida B. Wells ain't play that shit.

Source: Too Heavy A Load, Deborah Gray White