Three Stereotypes To Stop Believing About Black Men

smiling black man wearing a turtleneck
Briona Lamback
May 3, 2024

Since enslavement, harmful myths about Black men have continued to survive. These three have gotta go.

Lie #1: Black Men Are Hypersexual

  Since enslavement, our men have been portrayed as sexually aggressive. Stereotypes of hypersexuality are overexposed in the media, creating a negative association bias of Black men as sexually insatiable.

Lie #2: Black Men Are Criminals 

 Often our men are labeled thugs and assumed to be guilty of crimes from the jump. Although we often hear about the school-to-prison pipeline, society systemically criminalizes Black boys from the cradle. One in five Black men born in 2001 is likely to experience imprisonment in their lifetime.

Lie #3: Black Men Are Naturally Violent

 Black men are often seen as a threat because coloniality has crafted the myth that they're innately threatening and beast-like. This myth has real-life consequences for our community. Social psychologist John Paul Wilson says, "Unarmed black men are disproportionately more likely to be shot and killed by police, and often these killings are accompanied by explanations that cite the physical size of the person shot."

We must always acknowledge when harm is done to us. These myths are blatantly false and aren’t ours to carry or perpetuate. It’s time to let them go.