We Need to Look at This Story Through the Lens of Race

In trending news, most of us have heard about the story of 27-year-old Christian Toby Obumseli, fatally stabbed by his white girlfriend, Courtney Clenney, a 25-year-old OnlyFans model/ Instagram influencer. While themes of racial tension, white supremacy, and scandal plague the story, one particular layer especially stands out: misogynoir.

Recently, Obumseli’s brother Jeffrey Obumseli took to social media to denounce those tweets targeted toward Black women. When the late Obumseli’s page pulls up, there are apparent demeaning comments targeted toward Black women. In the wake of Obumseli’s murder, his brother Jeffrey is calling on the general public to address the clear injustice plaguing his brother’s death. Obumseli’s family is upset that Clenney has not been arrested. Clearly reaping the rewards of white supremacy.

Historically, Black women have borne the brunt of having to advocate for Black men even when there is often no reciprocity for their sacrifice. In many ways, Black women are seen as the mules of the world. Saddled with the burden of doing hard, uncomfortable work while also coming to the rescue of people who often see their sacrifice as mandatory and not necessarily a privilege. Many argue that Obumseli’s tweets denouncing Black women are over a decade old. They argue that the tweets should be forgiven and forgotten. Yet, other Black men make statements that are just as harmful and they too expect the support of Black women when things turn sour.

The death of Obumseli is undoubtedly tragic and filled with a lot of scandal. Online, the Black community is divided. Many are choosing to keep a safe distance from the entire situation and not offer any support or rebuttal.

White women like Clenney have a history of using their white female fragility to get away with horrendous crimes. It is worthy of note that there is an element of misogynoir that lingers on when tragedies like these happen.

Obumseli’s tweets show the sentiments of some Black men who exclusively date white women or racially ambiguous women. These men often believe the that Black women “don’t do it” for them or are “too loud” or “unruly.” 

The irony of this tragic incident should force people to think critically about race in general. Think about how our society treats and speaks about Black women. Especially, and more painfully, by some Black men. The blatant hatred, distrust and disregard for Black women has become alarming.

No one is saying that Obumseli would be alive if he had respected Black women, but it is ironic that his family is calling on them to seek justice for his murder.