Friday, May 7, 2010

Would You Donate Your Dreadlocks or Hair in Any State to Save Wetlands and Wildlife from Oil Spills?

Don't send your hair! BP's not using oil booms made from hair.

Yes! Your hair can help save the planet, at least help protect our wetlands and wildlife endangered by oil spills.

I wrote yesterday on this topic, and in that post, I gave details about how you can donate hair and pet fur to make oil containment booms. (Check that out here.)

When I heard that hair and nylons can be used to make oil boom, the first thing I thought was "cool." The next thought was of a scene in Chris Rock's documentary Good Hair. At one point he goes around trying to sell kinky hair off the heads of black people to the same stores that buy hair from India collected at Hindu temples to sell to African-Americans for weaves.

Yes, Rock was joking, but nobody wanted black people's hair because, according to one woman in the film, people don't want their hair to be nappy any more. That would be the people she knows, and not the people I know, and so, I disagree. My daughter wears her hair naturally, and it's not straight. It's kinky and sometimes nappy as well, if she wakes up with bed head because her scarf fell off. Actually, at those times it's more matted, I suppose.

Her hair is very thick and definitely has clogged up a drain in my house before. As I wrote in the earlier post, stuff sticks to hair. If I had the hair I've cut off my own head over the last year and what she's cut from her head, I'd send it to Matter of Trust, the organization that launched the hair for oil spills comapaign. I don't have a significant amount if hair to cut at the moment, but I do have some old nylons.

Yes, my mind runs on strange rails, which is how I got from oil containment boom to Chris Rock's film. The point is, making oil boom is not like a TV commercial. Anyone's hair and nylons are good enough, even my frail and graying strands. So, you can help the Gulf Coast right now. You can send some of yourself, if you can spare that.

I almost entitled yesterday's post, "Would you cut your dreadlocks to save the planet?", which takes politics of black hair to a different level?

I decided not to do that. In fact, yesterday I tacked the post you're reading now to the bottom of the donation post. Today, I figured delete it and split the first post into two separate topics. It didn't work well to muddy the waters that asked for hair donations with the volatile black hair debate.

The photo in this post of the brother with beautiful locs comes from a post at Barbados Underground, where the writer takes to task people who say "If you're black and you don't wear locs, you're ashamed of your race." Some people of African descent wear "dreadlocks" for religious reasons, but others wear locs to make political statements, as implied by the BU post, or they wear them simply because they look cool.

I have a relative with gorgeous locs. He was offered a role in the movie Ray, starring Jamie Foxx. He declined to take it when he was asked to cut his locs, which were not in fashion among black men during Ray Charles's heyday. I don't think he was making a political statement. I just think he likes his locs and didn't want to have regrow them.

He would not cut his dreadlocks to chase fame and fortune. The question is would you cut your dreadlocks or any of your hair in whatever state to save the planet?

1 comment:

jacques said...

I have had my dreadlocks growing for about 4 years now and of course they become apart of you. I am an actor though and depending on the part i would probably cut them off at the drop of a hat. I was hoping to cut them off in a symbolic way, maybe writing something for myself so it would be a metaphor for changing and letting go. I would however be interested in cutting them to save the planet. I just don't want to have dealt with the aches in my neck for this long without some sort of beautiful end to my hairlationship. I do often wonder if my hair may keep me from roles that could define my career. I would love any insight on that.