Jack and Jill of America – which its critics describe as an “exclusively African-American elitist organization” – is holding a regional conference in Columbia, S.C. this weekend.
The group – which boasts “thug life” circuit court judge DeAndrea Gist Benjamin (wife of corrupt Columbia mayor Steve Benjamin) among its members – describes its goal as “furthering an inherent and natural desire to bestow upon our children all the opportunities possible for a normal and graceful approach to a beautiful adulthood.”
Well, assuming those children are of the right color …
According to a pair of local sources who applied for membership in the group, Jack and Jill – formed by upper crust Philadelphia blacks back in 1938 – isn’t just racist against whites, it is racist against other blacks, too. In fact the group may still be applying an ugly early 20th century discriminatory technique known as the “brown paper bag test.”
What is the “brown paper bag test?” According to Urban Dictionary, it was a method used by “upper class black American societies and families to determine if a black person was sufficiently white to gain admittance or acceptance.”
“If your skin was darker than a brown paper bag, you did not merit inclusion,” the website explains.
In fact a 1998 article in The New York Times – published on the occasion of the group’s 60th anniversary – referenced the “brown paper bag” allegations against Jack and Jill.
“Jack and Jill’s image as an elitist group endures,” the article noted. “It can be traced to the group’s early decades, when some blacks saw it as open only to those who had ‘good hair’ and were able to pass ‘the paper-bag test’ — that is, having skin no darker than a brown paper bag.”
These allegations were repeated in this blog post, which references Jack and Jill as being an organization of exclusively passe-blanc (i.e. “pass for white”) African-Americans who “still paper bag test future mates.”
Jack and Jill leaders have consistently denied these allegations – but FITS has spoken with a pair of Columbia, S.C. women who say the test is very much alive and well in the organization in the 21st century.
How do they know? Because they say they failed it … and as a result were allegedly denied admittance to the organization.
“Jack and Jill is every bit as discriminatory toward dark-skinned blacks as the Ku Klux Klan,” one of the woman told FITS.
Amazing, isn’t it? The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) will boycott South Carolina over the Confederate Flag, but groups like this are welcomed with open arms to the city’s convention center?
How much sense does that make …
Obviously Jack and Jill – like Columbia’s racist Forest Lake Country Club – can admit whomever it pleases. As a private organization, that is its right. But if these allegations are true, then it must be viewed as no different from any group which discriminates on the basis of skin color.
Which means it is a racist organization …
In fact if it is indeed actively discriminating against dark-skinned blacks, then it is doubly racist … and doubly worthy of our contempt.