We have lost count of the number of times a black news anchor is accused of being unprofessional because she wears her natural hair or in this case a protective style while on air.
News Anchor Symone Woolridge shared on Facebook, some of the comments she received while broadcasting the news WREG News Channel 3 simply because she wore braids.
This was her caption on Facebook:
This is 2020–
You’ve probably seen a lot of black women rocking their natural hair or protective styles (like braids or twists), excited to finally feel free and comfortable to do so. However, there are still many people who think our hair is a problem. It’s a part of who we are, but never should it be a part of our value.
This is a message WREG News Channel 3 received last night as I anchored a newscast. A man said my braids are for teenagers and not professional. He also said I should “put pink in it” for tonight’s newscast. — I’ll leave what that insinuates to your own interpretation.
I’m only posting this to show how far we’ve come, yet how much work still needs to be done. Listening and learning can really change us. All of us. Let’s all try to do just that. And honestly, we have much more to focus on right now than black women’s hair.
Here are some of the comments Symone received:
The comments on Symone’s post was nothing short of full-on support and encouragement as people engaged with the negativity she received just for braids.
Read a few of the comments below:
Flora Isom: WHO determines what defines “professionalism” when it comes to hair? ?. This burns me up because as a black woman in corporate, I love wearing my hair in natural styles in a neat manner. Our hair does not come out of the scalp STRAIGHT, and does not define our level of intellect or professionalism. KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK Symone!!!! MY BEAUTIFUL SISTER WITH BRAIDS!! ♥️?
Sarah Cox: I’ve noticed black people wearing more protective and natural styles. I think it’s amazing and long overdue. Simone your hair is gorgeous and so are you
Mitzi Agnew: The way a person conducts themselves tells you a lot about them, and your reply was one of the most professional and classy I’ve ever seen. You proved you’re confident in your own skin, and that person’s opinion clearly didn’t matter! Keep being you, because you’re absolutely beautiful!!
Rachel Carpenter: That just shows his ignorance!! His response says everything you need to know about what type of person he is. And yours say all that it needs to say about you. Don’t stoop to his level. You are above that. Walk with your head high and your beautiful braids flowing freely, just as your spirit should.
We agree with everyone who had something positive to say, at this point, people who write or say negative things about natural hair or protective styles really need to self evaluate.
I am glad Symone and other anchors are freely sharing their experiences because the more the ignorance is exposed the less tolerable it is.
Girl your braids are gorgeous, you gotta drop the deets on the stylist!!
Here is another story about another news anchor who unapologetically rocks her natural hair even with negative comments, inspiring kids in Dallas where she is from. Read here.
The world is finally changing to what it should have been the entire time. Freedom expression isn’t anything that should be tampered with. These lame ass rules put in place by corporate Americans are crumbling. Freedom of choice gives the viewers the choice to change the station. You are gorgeous and continue to express yourself as YOU see fit.
Be your natural self. Our hair? We get to wear our way. Her hair is both professional and beautiful! Stop the hate and jealousy. Racism is no longer authorized!
As a black female in the Army, I can relate to how you feel. There is so much pressure on us to look the same as our white counterparts. White females were never pulled aside when they pushed their limits with hair color or styles. Even though they have changed the standards, we still have a long way to go when it comes to wearing our natural hair. I applaud you for being you for being brave.❤️❤️
I Love what u did to your Hair. Wish i would’ve met u 40 years ago. I would playing in your right now. No Lol. For Real!
I love what u did your Hair. I wish i had met u 40 years ago. I would be playing in your hair right now. No Lol. For Real! Stay Up Sweetheart.
Why are our hairstyles up for criticism? It doesn’t make sense. One may not care for a particular hairstyle, but that doesn’t give one a right to declare it “unprofessional” and why would a “childish” look be a category for censure either? Instead, the one complaining sounds childish and certainly ill-suited to publicly disdain another’s career placement based on their personal dislikes. It leaves me thinking they are so very used to having their way, no matter how inane their desires are – somewhat like a spoiled, inexperienced child.
You are extremely BEAUTIFUL, CLASSY, INTELLIGENT, and BLESSED. Don’t let the negativity of some people dim your bright light.
I love you hair! Braids are beautiful and the world needs to get a clue. Black women have always been put on the back burner, but it is nice to see a woman of color rocking her beautiful braids! All black girls need to understand that WE must love ourselves FIRST, not what other people want us to look like. Thank you for representing black women on air as their natural self! #hello #naturalhair #braidsrock
I bet they wouldn’t have a problem if it was stringy and straight, laying over the shoulder, in the same style.
Yes, we look younger by the minute. I bet they wouldn’t have a problem if it was stringy and straight, laying over the shoulder, in the same style.
First off braids are not a teenager thing,they are a cultural thing, and furthermore I see a lot of other races trying to wear them! Anyway your braids are very nice,and very well done,keep rocking them girlfriend cause you look Amazing ? ??
This viewer obviously has some issues and it’s not this young lady’s hair. She looks absolutely beautiful and very professional. With all we have going on in the world today, it’s funny he finds a hair style offensive. Keep doing you Symone, you are rocking it and there will always be folks like this dude waiting to criticize you. LOVE THE BRAIDS.
Her hair is perfect as is. I will say this… she is young-looking! That does not mean she is not professional. It wasn’t until my 40s that I stopped having the kind of features that made me seem younger than what I was. Rock your youth and vitality as long as you can and you want!
Goodmorning ,Symone u r so very a great anchor not just a pretty face u go lady keep on keeping your head up ,God got your back. Love charles
Good morning Symone u r so very a great anchor ,not just a pretty face u go lady, keep on keeping your head up,God got your back. Love charles
Symone, you look very professional and pretty with the BRAIDS. Your hair shouldn’t be discussed. If you were not reporting the News as it should be it’s NOW discussing times.
Why is this even a topic? I am 73 and white and I think Simone is very professional and beautiful. She does a great job. Her hair looks great. I can’t imagine anyone making bad comments.