Men that are obsessed over their daughter’s sexuality and virginity give off major incestuous and abusive vibes.
Rapper T.I. is a smart, dumb nigga who uses his thesaurus app every day in general, casual conversations. So I’m not at the least surprised that at his big, grown age he would get on the internet and brag about knowing the intimate details of his daughter, Deyjah’s body. I feel so embarrassed for his daughter who has to live with a parent who polices her body proudly as he does. Now granted, I haven’t watched T.I.’s reality show with singer Tiny but I’ve seen clips online to know that T.I., like many men, relies on sexism, misogyny, and antiquated gender roles to raise their children. I recall an old clip from their show that was circulating online that involved his son admitting he was no longer a virgin. T.I. laughed it off and admitted he has a double standard when it comes to his children. T.I. being a sexist, chauvinistic brute isn’t a new revelation. During the last presidential election, he proudly proclaimed he would never vote for a woman. Sexism in hip-hop isn’t usual, however, it’s not every day we see rappers tote their daughters like some unconquered princess that’s daring men to try to obtain.
I feel gross just talking about it.
It’s clear that T.I. doesn’t respect women but he doesn’t even have enough empathy to extend to his daughters. He is teaching his daughters that their value of importance is measured by their genitals. Not only is that damaging to young women but it can create a false sense of self. You know how we laugh at pick-me’s? Well, this is how women grow and conform to patriarchy. We are taught the importance of being sexually pure of whatever that means. It all starts in our own homes, church, and society. Black girls, in particular, are labeled fast for just physically developing. In the Black church and family dynamics, this is more prevalent because Black people are fundamentally conservative. T.I. sounds like one of those Trump-supporting, animal poaching, third cousin marrying, hillbillies who make their daughter wear promise rings as a binding contract for their virginity. Deyjah Harris doesn’t owe her father or any man her body. Her father showed poor judgment by announcing to the world that his daughter of legal age is a virgin. Now, all the trash cans of the Internet will flood her inboxes and social media with lewd comments over her body and it’s all her father’s fault. Why isn’t he protecting his Black girls? Below I’m going to list a few red flags on how this looks like abuse to me and if Deyjah Harris reads this, please understand that we see you and acknowledge your father is being a scumbag.
Financial Abuse and Dependency
Deyjah is 18 years old. There’s no doubt she is still getting financial support from her parents which is perfectly normal. However, men have a history of using money as a bargaining chip to abuse women. Do you know how people love to highlight our grandmothers staying with our grandfathers for decades—through thick and thin? Well, that’s because of inequality. Lots of women couldn’t work and raise children and needed the man to provide so they can have stability. That’s why a lot of incels hate feminism and educated women because it reduces the need to depend on men. Using this tactic on your daughter can set the tone that a woman can’t have an opinion or live life in their truth without the approval of a man. Instead of T.I. rejoicing that his daughter is stepping into young adulthood he is treating her like property he is preparing to marry off.
Lack of agency and privacy
We are all entitled to privacy and the ability to speak for ourselves without being threatened or being in fear of our livelihood jeopardized. In this case, T.I. has the power to withhold ensuring Deyjah is comfortable because he wants to have documented proof she is a virgin. This is alarming because he doesn’t trust his daughter and his obsession is making him possessive to the extent he can’t even be reasoned with even by her daughter. He would rather uphold a debunked theory on what virginity is ( in the article when the doctor explained that an absence of a hymen isn’t an indicator of being sexually active, he dismissed it). Black girls are entitled to having a coming-of-age story. There are so many countless TV shows and films that center girls being policed heavily by their parents especially their fathers. The measure of success for parenting daughters seems to be having a mythical ideal of that if their daughters are virgins they are better people, while their sons are free to have sex as long as they are having sex with women and not getting anyone pregnant. This example is just another display of sexism that girls and in this particular case Black girls have to endure.
Let’s make this very clear. Men that police their daughters and wives’ bodies do not do it out of love but out of entitlement. They see their daughters and wives’ as commodities and by T.I. parading his daughter the way he does he is signaling for dirtbag men to try to take advantage of his daughter. Thankfully, there are plenty of folks who condemn this behavior because there isn’t anything good that can come from this. But unfortunately, there are some who continue to violate young women this way as a false sense of protection because they have a perverse understanding of women’s bodies. I wish Deyjah Harris the best in life and I hope she can eventually break free from her controlling father who is too obsessed with her sex life or lack thereof.