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Real Talk: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s ‘Essence’ Cover Stirs Debate Among Black Women

dwayne johnson essence coverDwayne “The Rock” Johnson is undoubtedly eye candy for women of all races. Which may explain how he nabbed the latest cover of Essence magazine.

The cover story boasts of the magazine’s readers voting for the “Sexiest Brothers,” including names like Idris Elba, Shemar Moore and singer Maxwell. Johnson specifically dishes on “kissing, confidence & the beauty of black women.”

Surprisingly, the excerpt does not focus on Johnson’s specific thoughts on black women,

“…When I say I’m going to take care of a woman, I don’t just mean physically or sexually or romantically,” he revealed during the article interview. “I’m going to take care of her emotionally and spiritually. I’m going to take care of her in all ways. I take a lot of pride in that today…”

“I want to be a man who is truthful and who won’t let pride get in the way of my ripping myself open to my partner and saying, ‘Here I am. This is me,’” he added. “I feel there’s something powerful when a man reaches a point in his life when he can be completely vulnerable.”

A sly marketing move by Essence? Perhaps. A quick Google search for “Dwayne Johnson girlfriend” will return no searches of the actor with a black woman. This tidbit of information has lit up social media with women questioning Johnson’s authority on the topic of black women.

One commenter at Huff Post Black Voices, Kiesha Middleton, wrote:

I must say I adore this man not only for his talent but also his determination. He represents himself in a good light and he inspires many people with his life story. I will always be a supportive fan. However, I remember reading a sample of this article in which Dwayne states what he likes about black women. I don’t understand how he could possibly have any opinion of black women. I have never seen him with one.
Dwayne, we support you and love you, but please stick with topics of which you have a reasonable understanding.

God bless,
Kiesha Middleton

Another commenter, Megan Jerai, stood among the minority as she responded in defense of Johnson:

“A man can have love for black women and never have been involved with one. He may not be surrounded by them a lot and obviously he has love for other women as well. It should be a problem when he says he DOESN’T like black women.”

It will be interesting to read Johnson’s actual accounts of being with a black woman. In the meantime, it’s safe to say his choices in women should not take away from his appreciation of such a beautiful group of women.

What people are saying

10 thoughts on “Real Talk: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s ‘Essence’ Cover Stirs Debate Among Black Women

  1. Anonymous says:

    Does he belong on the cover of Essence magazine? My answer is: NO. Am a fan of Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson? Absolutely! However, Essence magazine was created to empower, uplift and CELEBRATE the beauty and "essence" of black women. With that being said, putting a man on the cover of a magazine that is specifically geared towards women of a specific race that he has never been with (and obviously from reading the interview, knows nothing about) is contradictory to everything that Essence stands for. Apparently, that has changed…

    I read the entire interview and it was pretty good until the question "What do you like about black women?" came up. His answer was very broad and extremely vague. It's like he was "Johnny-On-the-Spot" and didn't know what to say. His answer wasn't genuine and didn't even seem like he was speaking from experience. How could he be? What can he say? How can he speak on appreciating a specific race of women he's never been with? I honestly think he lied (about dating black women) and just said something nice to be politically correct because he has no idea. Just because he's half black doesn't mean he KNOWS about black women. His father is black – not his mother. If he had been raised by a black woman, then I would have expected him to speak from a personal perspective or some level of experience. Unfortunately, he can't. Funny thing is, the interviewer asked him if he was dating someone, and he confirmed and said how long he's been dating but didn't mention his girlfriend's name – because if he had, everyone would have Google'd her name (Lauren Hashian) and found out he's been dating a white woman since BEFORE his 2007 divorce from his Cuban ex-wife. He's been with that woman for a long time…I wouldn't be surprised if he marries her, which is all well and good. It's his choice and God given right. However, what does that say about Essence magazine? What it have been worth putting yet another black or half black man gracing the cover who again has shown very little to no desire at all to be with a black woman?

    I don't know what has happened with Essence magazine, but all I can say is I'm very happy I no longer subscribe to them. I wish there was another magazine geared towards black women that would put black men on the cover who truly understand what it means to have a positive, genuine, and real experience "loving" a black woman. Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson should only speak on what he knows of – which is exclusively dating non-black women, but that's not who Essence magazine was developed for. So, therefore, he should have never been on the cover. It would have been best if they had just merely mentioned his name in the magazine. I actually find it offensive and insulting that he's on the cover of a magazine dedicated to black women – whom of which he's nothing about.

  2. Paula Neal says:

    OMG!!! I definitely agree with your comments.

  3. Rosalind Moore says:

    Paula Neal
    Thank you and you are absolutely right!!

  4. Ngina James says:

    That was my thought when I saw the cover. I wondered if I was missing something and that he is now dating a black woman. Apparently not.

  5. Charlene Strickland says:

    I've always thought The Rock was super sexy and has a body to die for but was equally surprised to see him on the over of Essence. He should have been menitoned in the article but not receive the honor of being on the cover. Idris would have been my choice.

  6. Essence is not a relationship Magazine. Dwayne Johnson is a son of former slaves. He is a Black man. He is accomplished. Who he is or is not sleeping with has nothing to do with his career or his accomplishments. Yes, he deserves this cover.

  7. I'm confused, The cover clearly says" Dwayne The Rock Johnson on THE BEAUTY OF BLACK WOMEN" This just proves that people need any reason to complain!!!!!!!!!!!!! #getyolife!!! I love you Dwayne Johnson, keep doing you!!!!! P.S. Dwayne, let me take you to dinner.

  8. Tammy Sherrell Steward says:

    I've loved him since '97 but it's true-he's never been seen with a black woman.

  9. Celeste Vaughn Brown says:

    Since Essence went from being Black owned and operated to Time Warner, many of their editorial choices have missed the mark for me. Their Editor -at-Large is a man, so I am suspect of his life experiences as a black woman.

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