They say not to judge a person if you haven’t walked a mile in their shoes, but what if that person can’t even walk in their own pair? As a black woman I was embarrassed to see photos of 25 year-old rapper Cardi B being walked out of a New York Fashion Week party with a ripped gown and swollen face Friday night. By now I’m sure you’ve heard about her moment of indiscretion at a Harper’s Bazaar party—removing a Christian Louboutin shoe from her foot and chucking it at her rap nemesis Nicki Minaj while shouting expletives. She missed, by the way. Minaj’s security stepped in before she could reach the Queens, New York rapper. Pictures circulating the internet show a restrained, barefoot Cardi being escorted out the party by police, with a knot above her heavily made-up left eye. The entertainer later took to Instagram to post an explanation for her combative behavior. In an informal statement typed on her iPhone she said:

Even if her claims about Nicki are true, fighting her is no way to handle the situation. Nicki may have “liked” social media comments calling Cardi a bad mom, but responding this way only gives support to that claim. We cannot fight people into liking or even respecting us.

Cardi, whose real name is Belcalis Almanzar, has had a triumphant 2018 with the successful release of her debut album ‘Invasion of Privacy’ and the birth of her firstborn child with her husband, Migos rapper, Offset. She’s come far from her humble beginnings as a stripper from Bronx, New York who leveled up to D-list fame on VH1’s saga Love & Hip-Hop, and then became a household name, making regular rounds on shows like The Ellen Show and Late Night with Jimmy Fallon.

Her outspoken, colorful personality has landed her partnerships with fashion’s hottest giants like Moschino designer, Jeremy Scott, who escorted her to the 2018 Met Gala, and Instagram-famed brand Fashion Nova. Therefore it’s no surprise that the rapper earned herself a golden ticket to 2018 New York Fashion Week’s most prestigious shows and parties. What I do find shocking, however, is how hip-hop’s newest darling chose to conduct herself at the Harper’s Bazarr party. Regardless of her reasons for beefing with Minaj, she should’ve practiced self-control and professionalism.

Black people in America have historically been denied a “seat at the table” or in other words, have been shut out of elite events and gatherings by non-blacks. We’ve spent decades in a post-slavery United States seeking the respect and recognition we deserve for advancing the evolution of athletics and the arts. Now that we’re finally seeing our contributions consistently acknowledged, it’s important to conduct ourselves in a way that lets people know we too can be poised and professional. A few bad apples will never represent an entire group of people, but I was rooting for Cardi’s Bronx tale.

Cardi may have cooned her way to the top, but she’ll need to clean up her act to stay there. Just days before her Nicki altercation she posted an Instagram photo of her sitting front row at a fashion show in the company of Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour with the caption, “I CAME A LONG FUCKING WAY.” Her shoe-slinging antics say otherwise. She made strides only to follow up with back-stepping. Yes, I’m judging her.

Blogger: Ashleigh Grey

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