Back in the 90s, Tia and Tamera Mowry were experiencing the height of their fame while on the hit show “Sister, Sister.” The series which followed Tia and Tamera as Tia Landry and Tamera Campbell saw two actors play the part of two identical twins separated at birth and then accidentally reunited in their teens. It won several Emmys and Kids’ Choice Awards and cemented itself as essential Black TV. As a result, the twin sisters scored roles on other series, movies, and all kinds of media attention. And not for a lack of racist incidents that attempted to hold them back
Recently, Tia opened up about her experience as a Black teen actor in the 90s and shared a story that clearly still hurts her heart.
Speaking to Entertainment Tonight, Tia shared that she and her sister were once rejected from appearing in a teen magazine cover because of their skin color.
Speaking about the incident, Tia recalled how she’d been subjected to racism when she was a teen on the show and attempting to be on the cover of a popular magazine at the time.
“It was around Sister, Sister days. The show was extremely popular. We were beating — like in the ratings — Friends around that time,” Tia said. “So, my sister and I wanted to be on the cover of this very popular magazine at the time — it was a teenage magazine. We were told that we couldn’t be on the cover of the magazine because we were Black and we would not sell.”
The actress teared up as she went onto recall that “Here I am as an adult and, wow, it still affects me, how someone could demean your value because of the color of your skin,” she said. “I will never forget that. I wish I would have spoken up. I wish I would have said something then. I wish I would have had the courage to speak out and say that isn’t right.”
Years later Tia says she has used that moment to drive her in raising her two children.
Tia (who is a mother to Cree, 9, and Cairo, 2) says that “to this day, I’m always telling my beautiful brown-skinned girl that she is beautiful.”
“What I’ve done with my children is [reading] books,” she explained to People. “You can read incredible books to your children about Rosa Parks, about Martin Luther King Jr. — pivotal people that had a huge impact within the movement.”
“The other thing is through television, especially during this time,” she went onto explain. “I was just having my children watch a whole bunch of [things] that starred a lot of African American actors, and one of them is [The] Wiz. You had Michael Jackson, Diana Ross. It was just such a great story. And my son … he loved it, [and] it’s important.”
It’s no secret that when it comes to navigating and thriving in a work environment, women have it particularly difficult. Especially when it comes to climbing up the corporate ladder. For Black women, however, the challenges of this climb are especially strenuous. According to LeanIn.org and McKinsey & Company’s 2019 Women in the Workplace study, “Black women and Latinas are more likely to be held back by the broken rung.”
Not surprisingly, Black women have a lot to say about the lack of equal opportunity in the office space.
Check out their answers below!
“I still get some of this shit on occasion, but I’ve worked at my place long enough that people know to keep out of my business unless we’re talking business. I’m also fortunate to work for people who only care about your numbers and what you close on (finance) and crack down quick on racist/sexual harassment bullshit.
Imo, being great at your job gives you a lot of leeway, and women don’t often take advantage of it enough. Like when a co-worker implied I got my degree because of affirmative action, I set him straight quick with photos of my college acceptance letter and scholarship for academic performance.
Then I told my immediate rep and added that I’m just here to work and do good work, while casually dropping the fact that my sales were ~350% above the floor average. That perked him up enough to deal with the situation right then and there and bump the guy down a level.
Obviously being assertive doesn’t always work out in your favor, and sometimes it can even get you burned. But there’s something to be said for flexing the muscle you’ve built up and using Capitalism, your own generated value, as leverage. Even if it’s not your immediate boss, odds are there is someone in the hierarchy of your company who doesn’t fuck around and recognizes the problem perverts and bigots generate for employee performance (and litigation).”- Quixadashani
“Head. Phones. As soon as they start up with the problematic conversations in the office, slip them bad boys on and listen to a podcast or playlist.
I also had to learn to mind my ps and qs. Meaning be on time and make sure I’m doing everything by the book. Make sure I’m great at my job. They can’t come for you when they don’t have any dirt on you. Being able to check people in a nice way is paramount. I’m still working on that part. They pulled some mess last week when they tried to kick me off a volunteer charity team because they don’t like me or whatever. I called them out saying, “Why are y’all acting funny?” Oops, not the best way to handle it.” –leftblane
“Where do I start. First off my story is going to be a bit of a one off. Alot of the issues I faced in my office were actually caused by other people of color (Asians and Latinx, specifically). I’m one of four African Americans that work in a small company, and the only one on night shift. I’ve been there for two years. During those two years I have been there I’ve been called degrading names. I hear dehumanizing “black jokes” aimed and told directly to me on a daily basis. Most of the time these little shenanigans are pulled once upper management leaves or when they are not around. My tipping point was realizing that HR was useless because a lot of the things I was getting ready to report have already been reported for years.
The icing on the cake was in the beginning of November 2017. I overheard the companies president, a white guy in his 60s, use the N-word three times in a span of 10 minutes. So then I knew, I couldn’t go to anyone in the company to get any of these issues resolved. I personally have taken a radical approach to solving the issues for myself. I started recording everything they said to me. When there try to pull some of their racist games on me I threaten them. When one decided to try and pet me like I was some sort of dog, I told him I was going to break his hand, and I wasn’t kidding. I don’t recommend taking that approach, but it’s gotten them to stop bothering me. Shit most don’t talk to me anymore or dare stand next to me, which I like.
The company recently promoted a new person to night shift supervisor, he’s been with the company for 15 years. I’ve been helping him transition into his new role, as I know about a lot of the policies and technology we deal with. All while still taking care of my own workload. He’s been begging me to stay because of the help I’ve been giving him. When I told him about the things that I have had to put up with, he said he would address it immediately. The next day he sent one of the perpetrators home early for their antics, and that’s just the start. So who knows, maybe I might stay a little longer since I’m planning to move out of the state next year. But other more appealing I.T. jobs are out there that I’m eyeing. Plus my second job is trying to offer me full time, although it’s retail and not I.T. related. So it’s good having a backup plan.
Oh, I also go to the gym, I actually recommend it. Takes your mind off a lot. My particular gym needs a punching bag though. Sorry for the essay and long read. Probably the longest post I’ve ever typed on a phone, and posted on a site.” –DarksideImperialist
“I really get where you’re coming from because I work in a specialist field too. I sit and wonder if I were in another field would they have had the balls to try some of the crap that they have.
The gym is a good shout to go vent out some frustration, it’s next on my summer list of things to do. I’m slowly starting to make my way back out because all the stress had caused me to retreat into myself and hardly leave the house except for food or work because it essentially because my safe haven. I’m hoping your situation gets a lot better soon!”- beautynerds
“If it’s that bad, I’d leave. Few jobs are worth all that discomfort.
That being said, I’ve been in toxic work environments that have had black women stay employed there for long periods of time. They either cut out all social contact with everyone so no one feels comfortable enough to do the microagressions and things are always awkward with them or they do their best Ben Carson impression. Neither really pans out well for black women, so again, I say find a new job and try to get a raise out of it.”- Worstmodonreddit
“I work in the nuclear industry so it’s quite a unique job, so although I have been looking it’s been difficult to find something of a similar calibre, let alone better. I’ll also admit that there’s a bit of a fear factor over the devil you know, but I’m getting over that now. My mentor managed to organise a move of departments for me so I could have a bit of a reprieve but it’s only made me realise that living in the boonies gives folk an excuse to be ignant. It’s a work in progress.”- beautynerds
Millions of eyes were on Meghan Markle, Prince Harry, and Oprah Winfrey on Sunday night when the three of them sat down for an exclusive interview. The interview was the first the couple has given together since they stepped away from official royal duties last year and the first time they spoke out about their life and experiences as royals.
Check out the biggest bombshells below.
The ‘Firm’ had a lot of “concerns” about Archie’s skin tone.
In one of the most shocking revelations of Meghan and Harry’s interview, Meghan revealed that the royal family expressed “concerns and [had] conversations about how dark [Archie’s] skin might be when he’s born.” Later, Harry and Meghan underlined that Harry’s grandparents, Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, were not the ones who made the comments.
It was also the Firm’s decision to not give Archie a title.
Meghan also revealed that while the public was told that she and Harry did not want their son to have a title, it was actually the firm that made the decision.
“They didn’t want him to be a prince . . . which would be different from protocol, and that he wasn’t going to receive security,” Meghan explained. “We have in tandem the conversation of, ‘He won’t be given security. He’s not going to be given a title.’ And also concerns and conversations about how dark his skin might be when he’s born.”
In her darkest days as a member of the Royal Family, Meghan said she contemplated taking her own life.
“I was ashamed to say it at the time and ashamed to have to admit it to Harry. But I knew that if I didn’t say it — then I would do it,” she explained. “I just didn’t want to be alive anymore.” She went onto add that she “thought it would have solved everything for everyone.”
She also revealed that before a January 2019 outing with Prince Harry she told him about her thoughts. “I remember him saying, ‘I don’t think you can go,’ and I said, ‘I can’t be left alone.'”
Meghan added that she also asked for help from the palace and was told “there’s nothing we can do to protect you because you’re not a paid employee of the institution… it wouldn’t be good for the institution.”
The queen was not blind-sided by their exit, despite reports and suggestions.
Despite reports that Meghan and Harry’s decision to leave their posts as senior working royals was sudden, Harry said the opposite was true.
“No, I never blindsided my grandmother,” he explained that he had three conversations about the subject with the Queen and two conversations with his father Prince Charles adding he had “I have too much respect for her.”
Kate was the one who made Meghan cry and not the other way around.
Six months after their wedding, headlines reported a pre-wedding feud that left Kate Middleton in tears in 2018. In actuality “the reverse happened.”
“I don’t say that to be disparaging to anyone, because it was a really hard week of the wedding, and she was upset about something,” she explained. “But she owned it, and she apologized and she brought me flowers and a note apologizing.” Meghan later called Kate a “good person” and lamented headlines that pit the two royal women against one another.
Meghan was silenced. Punto.
“Were you silent, or were you silenced?” Oprah asked at the top of the interview. In response, Meghan replied, “The latter.”
“That was really hard to reconcile because it was only once we were married and everything started to really worsen that I came to understand that not only was I not being protected, but that they were willing to lie to protect other members of the family,” she explained. “They weren’t willing to tell the truth to protect me and my husband.”
Later, Meghan shared that her biggest regret from her experience in the royal family was thinking she’d be protected by them. “I regret believing that because I think had I really seen that that wasn’t happening, I would have been able to do more, but I think I wasn’t supposed to see it,” she explained. “I wasn’t supposed to know and now because we’re actually on the other side, we’ve actually not just survived but are thriving.”
Meghan and Harry were married before the big wedding.
Meghan revealed that she and Harry actually were married in a civil ceremony in their backyard. The small wedding was overseen by just the Archbishop of Canterbury three days before their publicized 2018 wedding. “I think we were both really aware, even in advance of that just, this wasn’t our day,” she explained. “This was the day that was planned for the world.”
It’s a girl!
In the sweetest and most loving portion of the interview, Meghan and Harry revealed that they are expecting a girl.
“To have a boy then a girl — what more can you ask for?” Harry told Oprah.