Hallmark Made A Card For Black Single Moms On Father’s Day

Hallmark Mahogany, a line targeted toward blacks, made greeting cards this Father’s Day for black single mothers. Bossip points us to the controversy, which pits the recognition of mamas who do both the mommy and the daddy job against the assumption that its perpetuating a stereotype. Personally, I don’t find the card pictured, which reads “For all the times you’ve been there for others, you deserve a day just for you,” the least bit offensive. The woman pictured has stereotypically black-looking hair, but the tag line and the rest of the card’s appearance are so vague that it could really be anyone. Instead of perpetuating a stereotype of black women, maybe it’s just acknowledging single mothers who happen to be black deserve a little more credit.

Dr. Boyce Watkins, a Syracuse University and founder of Your Black World, disagrees. In a post about Hallmark Mahogany’s Father’s Day card for single moms, he wrote:

“The problem of fatherlessness in black America is not simply some cultural phenomenon that black people suddenly and inexplicably decided to embrace. Half a century ago, most fathers were present in the homes of their children. The problem of fatherlessness is directly related to the joint crises of mass incarceration and unemployment that has hit the black community, making it difficult for many men to provide for their families – these conditions bred a set of cultural norms in which we were all somewhat complicit in accepting the status quo, rather than fighting the systemic obstacles that led to the demise of our community. … So, while personal irresponsibility certainly plays a role in the lack of fathers in the home, we can also point to broader institutional constructs such as the prison industrial complex (and even Hallmark’s perceived celebration of the missing black father) as prominent factors in this sad state of affairs.”

I don’t disagree with Dr. Watkins’ points at all. But I think they’re sort of heavy-handed when we’re talking about a well-intentioned greeting card. However, I’m a white woman who has never had to suffer from stereotypes about single motherhood, so I’m willing to be convinced otherwise on this.

What do you think about this Hallmark Mahogany card?

UPDATE: Hallmark contacted us with their statement about the controversial card.

[Your Black World]

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