Did you hear the one about the fat black woman on the plane? It’s a real knee-slapper, at least for those of us who are not too morbidly obese to reach our knees. Last week, the angriest fat black woman on the internet, race-baiting “intersectional feminist” blogger Amber Phillips (a self-described “social justice organizer”), boarded an American Airlines flight from Raleigh-Durham to D.C., and hilarity ensued. For those of you unfamiliar with Phillips, her podcast is called The Black Joy Mixtape, an ironic name, as the show is mainly an excuse for Phillips and her cohost to exude misery.
Sitting next to Phillips on that ill-fated commuter flight was the unluckiest white woman since Little Nell. Seriously, this is the Schleprock of white chicks. Because little did this poor woman know that her seatmate was someone who calls herself a “freedom fighter for petty Black Feminists everywhere.” Indeed, pettiness is Amber Phillips’ hog wallow. She lives to uncover and expose “petty” racism and misogyny. Her Twitter, which trumpets the fact that she’s “petty AF” (“petty as fuck”), is dedicated to “addressing subtle racism and patriarchy.” On her Instagram she calls herself a “Black Feminist Extremist” and “Black, Feminist, & Petty AF.” Phillips is a modern-day monster, a paranoid “transgression hunter” who takes offense no matter what whites do. She’s the kind of clueless fruitcake who’d scream racism if a white person made eye contact (“You’re belittling me as a black woman by staring me down!”) and if a white person avoided eye contact (“You’re ignoring and dismissing me as a black woman!”). Phillips is so intellectually dull, she’s incapable of understanding the basic principle that if you look hard enough for something, you’ll find it, as long as you never question how much of what you “found” is real and how much is what your unconscious biases have projected on the situation.
So here’s a self-described “petty as fuck black extremist” single-mindedly dedicated to uncovering “subtle” microaggressions from whites, and she’s seated next to a white woman in a cramped airplane cabin. Let the fun begin!
In a perfect world, planes would have special quarantine areas for small children and “petty social justice organizers”…although, to be fair, as much as I don’t care for children, I would never advocate being cruel to them, and such a coupling would certainly constitute child abuse. Immediately upon strapping in (with seat-belt extenders, I’m assuming), Phillips began chronicling her seatmate’s racist aggressions, which included “flipping her hair” (apparently it’s racist for a white woman to have long hair), “fastening her seat belt” (which is mandatory when taking off, but still racist when the white woman did it), and “crossing her legs.”
This is Bull Connor-level racism. Indeed, Connor was known to follow up a vicious beating with a carefree flip of the hair (since he sported a crew cut, it just made people think he had palsy).
After the white woman crossed her legs, “Fatty Seatbuckle” scolded her for “nearly” touching her with her foot. The white woman responded by asking Phillips to stop being “mean,” which only made Phillips angrier, because asking her to stop being mean was yet another racist aggression. Phillips, who would later cop to having “touched” the white woman’s arm, pulled out her phone and started taking photos of her “assailant” (even though by her own account Phillips was the one who first made physical contact). The white woman informed the flight attendant of the harassment, and when the plane landed, the police questioned both ladies. No one was arrested.
As if I even have to say it, Phillips’ story was picked up by the national news, to fill the gaps in the news cycle caused by the fact that Stormy Daniels has to leave CNN studios at least a few hours a day to blow strangers. Phillips told her side of the story unchallenged, and the incident was presented as racism laid bare, an example of a poor innocent woman of color tormented on an airplane for the crime of “flying while fat and black” (yes, that’s exactly how some of the articles phrased it, although, for the record, Phillips does not refer to herself as “fat” but rather “perceived as fat,” because obesity is a social construct). Now, do you think a single one of the mainstream news outlets that covered this story mentioned Phillips’ description of herself as a “petty-as-fuck black extremist” who fights for “petty black feminists everywhere”? Of course not. I mean, it’s not like it’s relevant that the woman who took this story to the press has such a clearly stated agenda. The mainstream sites proclaimed her a hero and ran the unconsented photos she took of the white woman in order to maximize the passenger’s humiliation (the WaPo expressed frustration that American Airlines refused to release the white woman’s name, so that she could be properly destroyed).
In an interview with Yahoo News, Phillips claimed that the hair-flipping and the other “microaggressions” had constituted an outright threat to her very existence. “I deserve to exist, I deserve to fly,” she told the reporter, concluding the interview by once again declaring, “I deserve to exist.” Think about that for a moment: This lunatic considered a white woman’s flip-of-the-hair an existential threat. Phillips is the fat black version of Elliot Rodger. In Rodger’s demented mind, every offhanded gesture by every young woman he encountered was a threat to his very being. Just like his fellow paranoid-schizo “incels,” he believed that he “deserved” a woman, he “deserved” sex, he “deserved” to reproduce, and those stuck-up Isla Vista bitches were trying to kill off his bloodline with their indifference. Both Phillips and Rodger see other people as nothing more than barriers to what they “deserve.” But as William Munny tells Little Bill in Unforgiven, “Deserve’s got nothin’ to do with it.” Elliot Rodger didn’t get sex because he was a psycho. And if Amber Phillips feels unwelcome on planes, maybe she ought to examine her own behavior.
Rodger was rightly portrayed in the press as a villain; Phillips was portrayed as a victim. Well, at least in the mainstream press. Because the only people willing to call Phillips out on her BS were—ready for this?—black bloggers. See, last year, during all that #MeToo rigmarole, Phillips appeared on CNN contributor Roland Martin’s cable news show, where she declared that all men, and all black men in particular, have either raped a woman or participated in rape. When Martin objected, stating that he had never raped or been party to a rape, she dismissed his claim, asserting that yes, he too probably raped. Needless to say, Martin lost his temper.
Black bloggers like Tariq Nasheed went to town on Phillips for her crass generalizations about men (which I should point out are no different from the crass generalizations Nasheed routinely makes about whites). He called her a “Shea Butter feminist” (a derogatory term for black feminists who are viewed as “fake”), and one of his Twitter followers called her a “coon.” Phillips hit back, attacking her black critics for calling her “petty.” No, I’m not joking; yes, you read that right. Phillips, who describes herself as “petty as fuck” on her Twitter and Instagram, claimed she was being “victimized” because people were calling her “petty.”
Ladies and gentlemen, we have reached peak stupidity. Enjoy the view and mind the altitude.