The Absurd Reason People Are Accusing Janet Jackson of Being a Gold Digger

April 9th 2017

Katelyn Harrop

Janet Jackson is splitting from her Qatari businessman husband Wissam Al Mana after five years of marriage, and critics aren’t letting her get away with it.

It wasn't long after US Weekly confirmed the split that people on social media started buzzing with accusations that the recording artist left her billionaire husband in pursuit of his fortune.

Despite, the singer's established career which includes eleven studio albums and numerous acting credits, many critics have questioned Jackson’s motives to leave her marriage, particularly emphasizing that the couple had a child together three months ago.

These comments come in the face of claims that Jackson left due to unhappiness because of a reportedly controlling husband.

Media representations of women are notoriously extreme, and the negativity is significantly worse when addressing women of color.

Negative imagery of black women appears twice as often as positive imagery in major forms of media, according to a 2012 survey conducted by Essence magazine.

“...more than 1,200 respondents told us that the images we encounter regularly on TV, in social media, in music videos and from other outlets are overwhelmingly negative and fall into categories that make us cringe,” read insights from the survey’s results, which go on to detail narratives of “gold Diggers, Modern Jezebels, Baby Mamas, Uneducated Sisters, Ratchet Women, Angry Black Women, Mean Black Girls, Unhealthy Black Women, and Black Barbies,” in major media.

Non-Hispanic white women flagged “Baby Mamas, Angry Black Women, Unhealthy Black Women and Uneducated Sisters” as the negative tropes they identified as “most representative of [the] Black women they’ve encountered in real life,” according to the study.

It’s this stigma against women of color, and against women who leave marriages that has driven many Jackson supporters to her defense.

Jackson hasn't publicly commented on reports of her separation.