Social media’s influence is strong and once again Black Twitter uses its powers for good to spread positive messages across the platform to stress the importance of showing our Black youth love.
If you haven’t heard by now, a video of Atlanta-based hairstylist Shabria — aka Lil Wave Daddy — went viral this past weekend of her encouraging a little Black girl named Ariyonna to appreciate her beauty after calling herself ugly. You’ll see the video capture Ariyonna catching a glimpse of herself in the mirror nonchalantly saying “I’m ugly,” to which Shabria responds by wrapping the 4-year-old in her arms and showering her with love.
When Black Twitter and Black users on other social media platforms got ahold of the video it went viral in a matter of hours, sparking a massive wave of love and support for the young Black girl. Plus, it sent a mass message to all young Black girls about self-love and beauty. Celebrities also joined the outpouring of love for International Women’s Day, reposting the video to their social media pages reinforcing lessons about how important it is to fight against colorism, oppression, and to build the youth up.
The way social media platforms have been able to connect millions of people around the world in viral scenarios just goes to show how powerful technology can be in this day and age. Within the past few months, the Black community has banded together on social media to show their support for those whose accomplishments would’ve otherwise been bypassed.
Last month, it rallied behind TikTok influencer and choreographer Jalaiah Harmon to credit her for creating the viral “Renegade” dance routine, which she performed at NBA All-Star Weekend. Additionally, Matthew A. Cherry, creator of Oscar-winning short film “Hair Love,” has social media to thank for his well-deserved award as well.
Shabria and Ariyonna’s viral video made national news, as it should’ve, teaching valuable lessons about self-love and using social media platforms to spark change in our society. The video proves to us that there’s much to be done for Black youth in America, but also that we have the ability to use technology to help enrich our lives and connect with one another in a productive manner. The biggest takeaway from this moment is how we’re able to bridge the gap between the Black community and technology through positive affirmations, effective strategies, and collaboration.