Vanity Fair's latest cover story features a sultry and elegant Rihanna modeling designer clothes and shoes (in one pic, just the shoes) as Annie Liebowitz photographs her in picturesquely decayed Fidel-o-centric Havana whose peeling walls and ancient automobiles make great backgrounds for photos if not exactly for real life.
There's also an interview with Rihanna in which the Barbadian music bomb hands out some surprisingly traditionalist sex advice for a gal who's willing to pose in only her Manolos and her tattoos:
Despite all those rumors of sexual liaisons, Rihanna says her last real, official boyfriend was Chris Brown—when they briefly got back together three years after his arrest for assaulting her in 2009 ….
Given that she’s supposed to be so freewheeling, can’t she just have sex for fun? “If I wanted to I would completely do that,” she says. “I am going to do what makes me feel happy, what I feel like doing. But that would be empty for me; that to me is a hollow move. I would wake up the next day feeling like s—….
“I always see the best in people,” she says. “I hope for the best, and I always look for that little bit of good, that potential, and I wait for it to blossom. You want them to feel good being a man, but now men are afraid to be men. They think being a real man is actually being a pussy, that if you take a chair out for a lady, or you’re nice or even affectionate to your girl in front of your boys, you’re less of a man. It’s so sick. They won’t be a gentleman because that makes them appear soft. That’s what we’re dealing with now, a hundred percent, and girls are settling for that, but I won’t. I will wait forever if I have to … but that’s O.K. You have to be screwed over enough times to know, but now I’m hoping for more than these guys can actually give.
“That’s why I haven’t been having sex or even really seeing anybody,” she says, “because I don’t want to wake up the next day feeling guilty. I mean I get horny, I’m human, I’m a woman, I want to have sex. But what am I going to do—just find the first random cute dude that I think is going to be a great ride for the night and then tomorrow I wake up feeling empty and hollow? He has a great story and I’m like … what am I doing? I can’t do it to myself. I cannot. It has a little bit to do with fame and a lot to do with the woman that I am. And that saves me.”
Is she lonely? “It is lonely,” she says, “but I have so much work to do that I get distracted. I don’t have time to be lonely.
The Federalist’s Bre Payton comments:
Her advice makes a lot of sense. Repeatedly we’ve been hearing about the demise of millennial relationships being caused by thoughtless or lazy young men. While certainly not all millennial men are this way, on the whole men aren’t incentivized to treat women well because there are a surplus of women in many circles. But if enough women were to boycott rude behavior, perhaps men would take the hint and actually invest in relationships instead of fishing for casual sex, which they perceive as plentiful.
The singer also points out that sex outside of commitment is meaningless and empty….
All true—but there’s more. Rihanna is 27, and elsewhere in the interview she says she wants to have a child “so bad…eventually.” As an alpha woman loaded with beauty and accomplishments but dying to commit herself, she’s obviously looking for a man even more alpha than she is. This explains the Christ Brown debacle—and her amorous return to him even after he beat her face into meatloaf. Brown was an alpha in all the wrong ways, and Rihanna seems to have learned her lesson on that one. But now what?
High-achieving women in general have a tough time finding men who aren’t jerks or whingy betas, and high-achieving black women have the toughest time of all, given that statistics show that minority men lag far behind minority women in education and hence, income. Black psychologist Linda Young writes:
The ratio of black females to males is far greater than any other group at 25-29 and gets even bigger at 30-34, where it flips for Latina women. At 30-34 there are 177 women for every 100 men with bachelor's degrees or higher. If we just count people with master's and doctoral degrees, there are 209 black women for every hundred men versus 133 white women, 101 Asian women and 173 Latinas for every hundred of those men. So once again, the fiercest competition for mates within one's own race is among black women…which is certainly not new news to those women in my groups!
Greater competition brings out some of the worst behavior in both men and women when it comes to the qualities that sustain healthy, satisfying relationships. In a pool where there are a lot more women than men, men are rewarded (in the short term) for being more selfish, insensitive and opportunistic and some women begin to lower their own standards on being treated well, simply to avoid being alone.
One solution to the problem might be to follow Christina Hoff Sommers’ counsel: Nudge more boys, including minority boys, to stay in school by tailoring education to their natural competitiveness, their yearning for structure, and their love of taking things apart and putting them back together, learning, among other things, the earned self-confidence that makes for a good alpha instead of a bad alpha.