Obama Goes After Black Fathers Again

by Zettler Clay

ChicagoFatherhood in black culture is laced with explosives. President Barack Obama seems to have a taste for pyrotechnics.

On Friday, he hit his old Chicago stomping grounds to speak at Hyde Park Academy. The hot button issue in the Chi these days continue to be guns and violence, but Obama didn’t spend much time on gun chatter to this group. He talked about fathers in black communities.

“For a lot of young boys and young men in particular, they don’t see an example of fathers or grandfathers, uncles, who are in a position to support families and be held up in respect,” Obama said. “And so that means that this is not just a gun issue; it’s also an issue of the kinds of communities that we’re building.”

OK, well, he didn’t single out “black fathers.” He merely spoke to a school resplendent with brown faces about absentee fathers underpinning the urban dysfunction in their neighborhoods.

It was pointed and unmistakable. It was redundant.

This isn’t the first time Obama has taken black men to task. At a Father’s Day speech in 2008, again in Chicago’s South Side, he bore into them again:

“Too many fathers are M.I.A, too many fathers are AWOL, missing from too many lives and too many homes,” Mr. Obama said, to a chorus of approving murmurs from the audience. “They have abandoned their responsibilities, acting like boys instead of men. And the foundations of our families are weaker because of it.”

Cool, no problem there. Then it got interesting:

“I know how hard it is to get kids to eat properly,” Mr. Obama said. “But I also know that folks are letting our children drink eight sodas a day, which some parents do, or, you know, eat a bag of potato chips for lunch. Buy a little desk or put that child at the kitchen table. Watch them do their homework.”

Bill Cosby undoubtedly smiled. So did the mostly black church audience that day. It’s a familiar trope: Put the heat on the individual, espousing the bootstrap, making the story easier to swallow and the real issues of poverty, systemic decay ignored.

It’s one thing to promote fatherhood and community in the context of overcoming and pushing for riddance of systemic ills. It’s another to sell the merits of dads as panacea. That’s irresponsible.

Black and white fathers abandon their children, yet I’d be hard-pressed to imagine a speech like this given to children living in Newtown, Conn. Statistics are often reported to justify this strategy, but one side doesn’t have a monopoly on favorable statistics.

In 2007, a study conducted by Boston University reported that black fathers who don’t reside in the home are more likely to sustain regular contact with their children than fathers of any other group. This isn’t to exonerate black men who neglect their duties, but to emphasize how collective the issue is.

More engaging fathers is only one hurdle. There are still other more daunting obstacles (public education, job attrition, rising college tuition) that stand in the way of reversing urban decline and building sustainable models of success.

It’s more than fathers who are failing children. How are guns flowing through our areas? How are guns getting in the hands of our youth? It ain’t Dick’s Sporting Goods.

Obama’s speech went against an accepted narrative about his political roots, that he was familiar with his old base in Chicago’s South Side. That since he made his political bones there, he has insight where others don’t.

His continuation of the hackneyed black pathology rhetoric of his political predecessors is more than disappointing. It’s a sobering reminder that when it comes to uprooting the ills of urban black America, the leadership in this country still lacks a clue.

  • Mademoiselle

    So white children get murdered, and he’s moved to pass gun legislation without delay. Black children get murdered, and he’s moved to lecture black parents? It’s times like these that make me feel like he’s just a white man in a black man’s skin. How many of our white politicians would love to stand in front of us and tell us to our faces (with rounds of applause, no less) that we’re our own problems and our only salvation is to pull ourselves out of our own ditch?

  • Guest1234

    This is ridiculous. Since when is it an attack to tell people to get control of themselves? True. There are issues plaguing inner-city communities that are outside of individual control. Fatherhood is NOT one of them. The quality of parent one decides to be is ENTIRELY within that individual’s control and NOONE ELSE’S. And deciding to be an active, present parent is the best thing in the world ANYBODY can do for their child. Kudos to President Obama for saying so!

    I’m glad to see the president say that people need to take responsibility for the children they bring into this world. What’s wrong with saying that? The mere fact that you think THAT’s some kind of attack betrays a troubling attitude with Americans these days – one of incessant, insidious victimhood. Black men are not victims of Obama’s words. Please stop painting them as such. They are grown men who aren’t going to break down and fall apart just because somebody speaks a bit of truth to them once in a while. Stop coddling and babying them, please. I think we ALL know that such coddling hasn’t done them a damned bit of good over the years. It’s okay for the president to address the young men of his community as men. It’s okay for him to have greater expectations of them than to give up on themselves, their lives and their children just because their communities aren’t perfect. My guess is that if more people did that, more young black men would rise to the occasion.

    Black men are just that. MEN. And it’s high time somebody started treating them like it. I have no doubt in my mind that the President has reached at least one young man. And his concern has changed at least one life. And that’s reason enough to keep doing it. I’m not going to listen to any of this crap about how black men shouldn’t be confronted about absentee fathering so long as life’s not fair. Life will never be fair. But there ARE things that they can control such as being a present, good father (and that includes treating the child’s mother well, AND/OR using a condom to prevent unwanted pregnancies.) And I applaud anybody that says so out loud, and calls people out on their BS. Our children deserve better than that. Period.

  • kylieky

    I don’t understand your dismay at his speech. To solve a problem, you need to get to the root of it and that is what I believe he was doing. If these same boys running around Chicago had decent fathers at home to begin with, then they wouldn’t be shooting each other like animals. The issue is not that he is reiterating the message, it’s that enough people are not reiterating it.

    I also don’t understand you Connecticut analogy. Why the hell would he be giving a speech like that in Newtown Connecticut? Do you know the demographics on families there?

  • kylieky

    Would you deny that we are our own problems when our children are running the streets?

  • Apple

    But I thought lack of fathers was part of the big problem ? At least that’s the theory I’ve been hearing for over a decade

  • Kacey

    The problem is not that what Obama is saying is wrong (it’s actually completely true) but it also seems to be the only thing he ever has to say when he’s addressing this crowd. It’s a lecture and an admonition and, for him, it’s the same-ole-same-ole. Fatherless homes are definitely part of the problem, but not the only problem. The production and availability of these weapons is also a problem. The sentencing for gun-related crimes is also a problem. The lack of jobs for a disenfranchised community is also a problem. How about Obama stop dusting-off and recycling the same speech every time he has to address the black community.

  • Ooh La La

    I couldn’t agree more. People hate to be called out an love to resort to excuses. It’s not to say that out black men don’t endure challenges, but at some point you have to take responsibility for you. There are some black fathers who manage to do so despite the same odds and all the complaining and apathy are only hurting your children and our communities as a whole. It really just blows my mind how much people neglect how substantial a stable and supportive familial structure is to the development of an individual.

  • Kaeli

    The author of this nonsensical article needs just stop. Obama just cannot win. I’m still trying to figure out what the problem was with what he said. Telling men in general to take care of the children they bring into this world is now unacceptable. Please stop. And the reason it isn’t acceptable is because there are other contributors to gun violence. Or is the fact that he said parents should be more involved in the day to day activities of their children by ensuring they eat real meals and complete their home work. How dare he!!!! I just don’t get it all all with people sometimes. We need to be able to speak frankly about issues effecting our neighborhoods and stop pretending like this mess does not exist. This article is just silly.

  • Mademoiselle

    I wouldn’t deny that parenting is a problem in Chicago any more than I would’ve denied mental health a problem in Newtown. In one case, Obama addressed the most immediate problem: guns; in the other, where the same immediate problem exists, he addressed the systemic farsighted problem instead. Even if all these young boys’ fathers reappeared in their lives today, it would take years/generations to undo that damage, just like any mental health campaign would. However, the rhetoric is different depending on the audience’s makeup. In one, the priority is to take immediate action, and in the other, the priority is to prod and lecture about personal development. While we wait on absentee fathers to get the message, what’s Obama’s take on addressing Chicago’s immediate needs?

  • Ash

    I see no problem with his speech. The times I usually have a problem with politicians going blaming black fathers is when the politician doesn’t support sex ed or funding organizations like Planned Parenthood. Poor black men and women need to start being more discerning about when and how they bring children into this world. And if you bring a child into this world…step up and be a parent!

    I don’t feel that the President has always done a great job of addressing Black Americans directly, however there’s no denying that he advocates policies that help many Black Americans.

  • D

    Are folks insane? This is exactly the note Obama should be hitting. I once read that in 1960 the proportion of black children living with a single parent was about 20 percent. It’s about 70 percent now….much higher than any other group. This is clearly a message we need to hear more than other groups. Sorry if some see that as airing dirty laundry or embarrassing or whatever. But it’s truth. If this isn’t a social crisis I don’t know what is. The only thing I would change in Obama’s spiel is expanding it to discuss marriage and family, not just fatherhood. Obviously there are a lot of societal issues that lead to this issue and the decay in urban areas, and it would be great if he spoke out more strongly against those forces and had targeted plans to deal with urban areas, specifically. But that’s different than asking him to be silent on this issue or to tone it down. No. If anything, we need our most visible leaders speaking up loudly, addressing this issue and the societal ills that cause it (though Hispanics are in our same social strata and don’t have as many fatherless homes as we do).

  • Skye

    Hmmm this does make me wonder. Where are the older black men. We know where everyone else is but do the grown black men disappear? Seriously we talk about the women being on assistance and children running the streets and the many innocent ones who are caught between this. But where do the fathers and 35+ plus men go to?

  • Kaeli

    Are you saying that that reason black men are absent from many underclass black families is economics? I just can’t believe that. It would make
    more sense for a real MAN to stay for that reason because he would know that his role was to provide for his family and would realize what ever little income he could bring in would help immensely.

  • Kaeli

    Great point!! It pains me that black men turn a blind eye to this mess. Many will happily speak out about women’s issues ( black women need to this and that) and about how anti-gay they are but are silent on black men not taking care of their responsibility. In my opinion black men need I fix and help their own. Shame and shun friends who brag about
    all their baby mamas. Black men have normalized the poor behavior of their peers and actual see this crap as being a “real man”. You are so right older black men need to police their own.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    we go to the internet where everything we say is met with derision…

  • Skye

    James that’s not enough. I’m being serious and this is a problem. We talk about women and the youth but where are the grown men its almost like they move to another planet they are physically and mentally gone…. where to?

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    when is the last time obama spoke thus to a group of white folk? never?

    other groups get policies and action, blacks get scolded. obama maintains NO relationship with the congressional black caucus. obama offers NOTHING to black people. he is the HOUSE NEGRO supreme.

    did the crazy white mass murderers have absentee fathers?

    time has come for black people to withdraw support for a president who does not support us.

  • Skye

    Yeah that would work they will not listen to women and children. Males need to crack down. Also, police should be doing some investigations and bribing them with rewards to turn/snitch on eachother (gangs) instead innocent people living in more fear.

  • Ask_ME

    I don’t have an issue with his speech. A certain group of individuals who frequent this site seem to believe fatherless homes are the MAIN issue….so why get mad when he takes absentee fathers to task???

    However, I do have a few questions about some things…

    While I believe a large number of black children are born out of wedlock, I don’t believe MOST are growing up without some form of male guidance (now whether or not that’s good or bad guidance is a whole different story). I don’t believe MOST of them have no clue who their father is or what he looks like. Often times these men are in close distance to the children…even if they aren’t active in their lives.

    I once read a study about Chicago’s housing project. This study showed that MEN were in fact living in the homes with the women and children (though they weren’t supposed to be living there…and when CHA did sweeps themen were told to get out). These men were boyfriends and babydaddies. A lot of these men were found be abusive towards the women, but the women refused to kick them out for a variety of reason (the main reason being money).

    The same study showed that MOST of the women in Chicago’s large housing projects (which have been thrown down) weren’t raising their children in manless homes. No, these people were not married, but their homes weren’t without men as we have so often been led to believe. And when you think about it makes since. IF poor black women are more likely to be employed than poor black men where exactly are those poor black men sleeping at night???

    My point is this: People tend to associate out of wedlock births with fatherless. That’s not exactly true all the time. A lot of these folks are living together but they are not married. If you visit Wal-Mart on the 1st and the 15th of the month you will notice that the chick with the two kids and a cart full of groceries, who is paying for her food with foodstamps has a MAN right beside her.

    “In 2007, a study conducted by Boston University reported that black fathers who don’t reside in the home are more likely to sustain regular contact with their children than fathers of any other group.”

    ^^^I would also like to add how black men are quick to cite this study when hell is falling on THEIR heads, but IGNORE it when it’s time to ridicule black single mothers.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    why would he do that? he has tapped into a rich vein of black self hate. he plys it expertly. black people love to hear how terrible we are. how it’s all our own fault. we eat that stuff up.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    we are not our own problem. the system of white supremacy is black peoples problem.

  • victoria

    Mademoiselle
    When my mother use to confront me about my poor behavior the last thing I could do was mention someone else’s name. In other words, Mom wanted to know why I behaved poorly. Not what the other person did. She didnt care about them. Her concern was ME. Concerning our neighborhoods, Newtown, CT doesnt need to be mentioned. White parents dont need to be mentioned. They are not there. So if Obama spoke about divorce rates and gun violence in Newtown, CT will this make a difference concerning the black neighborhoods?

    Obama spoke the truth, “And so that means that this is not just a gun issue; it’s also an issue of the kinds of communities that we’re building.” We are building weak communities with weak men. This is our fault. Newtown, CT plays no part in our shortcomings.

  • victoria

    James, b/c white supremacy is our problem, this should be the fire that holds black families together. Real men should stick around, support their kids, help them fight white supremacy.

  • victoria

    The GLUE that holds black families together

  • http://gravatar.com/g2-486fbd084992b67b1854498d44fdf226 lexdiamonz

    I agree with the message but this is not the time for the message GUN CONTROL is the issue how many of those white mass murderers grew up with “daddy” if he wants to talk black fathers where is the administrative’s policy stance on fatherhood programs in these communities???

  • victoria

    The best comment I have read on this site in ages

  • victoria

    @Guest 1234
    The best comment I have hread on this site in ages

  • D.T.

    Older blacks (55 plus) are some of the most boot-licking, afraid of whitey group of people I’ve ever met. They’ve done nothing but sit on their bums for years and have the audacity to wag their heads and point their fingers at the younger generations. They are truly the ones that dropped the ball within the black family structure and are a big disappointment and failure.

  • march pisces

    @ jamesfrmphilly….. no disrespect, but maybe instead of going to the internet you go to your neighborhood school and offer yourself as an example of what a responsible man is, looks like and what he does.

  • http://gravatar.com/g2-486fbd084992b67b1854498d44fdf226 lexdiamonz

    I know women are going to bash me for agreeing with this statement but at the end of the day ladies this commenter is right if we want to hold accountable absent father’s we MUST put some of the accountability on the MOTHER’S who are present in their children’s lives daily…there is a myriad of problems but ultimately the irresponsible choices of both the mother and father is the issue

  • victoria

    Kaeli
    Exactly.

  • Kaeli

    What percentage of gun violence do you think is at the hands of white mass murderers? Sure that is what makes the news but it is the tip of the iceberg and mostly committed by people with mental health issues. Gun violence in urban areas doesn’t make the news for obvious reasons but that is the normal face of gun violence. So we can sit hear and talk about media sensationalized violence or we can have some real talk.

  • Kaeli

    Hmmm well I guess that’s the problem right there. Sitting at your computer talking about the problems instead of going to a community center, helping coach sports, telling friends that you aren’t impressed by their harem. Great idea!!! Sit at your computer and talk about the problem instead of getting out there in the real world and taking action.

  • Guess

    I’ve always been ambivalent about Obama’s ability to directly relate to Black ppl. He seems to be very disconnected in general – shallow & wishy washy. I’m starting to believe he truly has no real platform or insight into our issues. The statements about Us shuffling around in houseslippers & statements about fatherlessness are completely incongrouos. Just as one blogger pointed out, he didn’t attempt to address mental health issues or the security breach in the Connecticut school shooting. Deflection, projection & self-hatred are the order of the day… SMH

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    hate kids….

  • Guess

    And you know what this man does in his community/personal life?

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    plus they would accuse me of being a pedophile…

  • Skye

    Thanks for actually laying down something to work with. That makes a lot of sense of why they say black men who are out the homes makes more contact with children. Also, I don’t think they consistently stay in the house too. I think they go back n forth between different women is why the children don’t have consistent father in their lives because daddy bounces between diff families.

  • march pisces

    @ jamesfromphilly…..you an all the men president O was talking about…smh…

  • victoria

    Chillyroad and Lexdiamonz

    If Michelle Obama stated this, does this mean Obama’s words are null and void?

  • D.T.

    Blaming absent fathers has become such a comfortable excuse. When will black mothers be held responsible for making better decisions? Women want to be equal with men when it but we want men responsible for what we choose to do with our wombs? I don’t get it. NO ONE is more responsible for what goes on with my body than I AM.
    Most single mothers are not victims. They are what you call consequences from poor decisions. And don’t play dumb, when I say single mothers I’m not talking about widows or most divorced women.

    While I understand in some environments this is systematic and the cycle will continue to repeat, however there are women smart enough to know Jamal can’t take care of himself let alone a child and they still end up getting pregnant by him. Those are the ones I have no sympathy for whatsoever.

  • march pisces

    @ jamesfrmphilly….you hate them along with all the other men president O was talking about…smh…as for your second comment…excuses, something you and THOSE men are really good at….

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    the root of the problem for black people is the system of white supremacy which teaches that black people are somehow worse than others.

    did the crazy white mass killers have fathers in the house? did you hear it even mentioned? no?

  • Mademoiselle

    @victoria
    Believe me, I’m not playing a “they did it first” game. My point is Obama faces the exact same platform in two racially different communities, and he treats the white communities with compassion and ignores their underlying issues so that he can address their most immediate needs, whereas he points fingers at the black community’s underlying issues and glazes over their most immediate needs. This is the same treatment black people have been getting for years from people that don’t look as much like them as Obama does. I’m calling out disparity in his approach. If he’s putting on gloves to address one group’s problem, I expect him as the president to do the same for the next group’s problem. His approach to Newtown will (and has) undoubtedly get (gotten) federal funding to back up his stance. His approach to Chicago (telling fathers to step up) is free to him and the government. Black issues = blacks’ problems; white issues = federal problems.

    Now if your mother went around shedding tears and breaking her back to curtail everyone else’s behavioral challenges and just shook her head and told you to get it together, you’d definitely have a problem with the differences in her approach, would you not?

  • AnGe

    So do you believe that the current condition of African American people in this country is solely the fault of white supremacy? That there is nothing that can be done on our end to improve upon that condition?

    There is a long list of men, films, music, etc that do the very opposite of promoting family and unity in the black community. Why is it so wrong for Obama to be one person that actively promotes traditional family values?

    I’m sorry but everything is not the fault of white supremacy. And wanting to make improvements in the community and bring back the discipline, ingenuity, and organization clearly exhibited during the Civil Rights movement does not qualify as black hate and self loathing.

    @Chillyroad asked would we be so receptive if Michelle spoke out about children being born out of wedlock. Yes. Yes I would. I would welcome that kind of championing. Who cares what the stats show. That black fathers are more likely to stick around and yadda yadda yadda. Whats so wrong with wanting better. Wanting to see marriages reestablished. See more two parent homes. See fewer of us receiving government benefits. See less of us contracting HIV. See more of us in politics. See fewer of us incarcerated.

    There was just an article about Lil Wayne spewing out a bunch of trash in reference to Emmit Till. I see Obamas statements as providing some form of balance. A dominant public african american male figure actually putting out positive ideas. What’s wrong with that?

  • Fantastico

    Interesting analysis.

  • Skye

    Here is the thing white supremacy has a lot to do with the issues facing black people its how were in the situation in the first place. BUT there are things we can control ourselves. One children you can’t afford which that topic was done not too long ago. The con census of the women here were that we have control of that. Now killing you can’t convince me white supremacy as an excuse. To go shoot your people up and wipe out a generation. Hate to say it but most likely for change the white man has to do it because black men cant is what I’m hearing. And dont complain when he moves you out the neighborhood (gentr). A step would be if you living off your baby mama/woman work at a fastfood joint/Walmart etc bring that little 1-200 dollars weekly in the home and save up. Your not paying rent or food both of u. And talk to your children simple and easy!

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    you mean like the black panthers? the freedom riders?
    folk like them? the generation that secured the freedoms that YOU have today? that group of people?

  • kylieky

    You are right. White supremacy is the root of the problem. It has really messed our people up when you consider the fact that hundreds of years later they have unshackled us and we are now the ones oppressing, enslaving, and killing ourselves.

  • march pisces

    @ guess…you make a good point that i don’t know what he does. until he states something that he does, which he does not have to, i’ll continue speak with james until he shuts me down.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    first the younger generation rejects EVERYTHING that the older generation has to say, then you turn around and ask where are we.

    you can’t have it both ways.

    FYI : we are right here watching you guys self destruct.
    anytime you want to listen, holla.

  • Ask_ME

    I can’t find the link to the study, but here is another study I read…

    http://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/Digitization/184178NCJRS.pdf

    ^^^Proves that the men are around, but they tend to be total failures.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    MY child lived with me half the time, went to private school, attended YALE and now works in silicon valley…

  • Anonymous

    Chicago has some of the strictest gun control laws in the United States. It is deeper than gun violence in that particular city, so I don’t disagree with President Obama addressing community issues.

  • Skye

    @AnGe yes people find it so insulting that a black educated man with a wife and children would dare to address grown men of color. I have some issues with Obama but come on self-hater yet you have a bunch of males shooting each other up instead of white supremacy let’s talk about Black Supremacy. We can blame them for education and business(outside sources) but our personal and intimate relationships absolutely not it falls on us!

  • victoria

    Or how about these fathers call, visit their children daily, weekly. Partake in after school activities, school events, and meet with teachers. How about these fathers talk to their children about drugs, gangs, the opposite sex, criminal activities, internet pitfalls, etc. Go for walks with their children. Create traditions. Help them with homework, school projects. Take them to the movies, to the beach. Talk to them about sexual abuse. Protect them from predators, gang members. Discipline their kids. Along with so much more. These are the things that parents do.
    Not having a job nor a bus pass is no excuse to be absent.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    no need, your own self hate and ignorance will do that..

  • march pisces

    @ jamesfrmphilly…..and with that james has shut me down :-). my only point being with the unfortuanate number of children who don’t have a stand up man in thier life it would be nice if the more responsible men who have done a great job with their own children stepped in and helped take up the slack.

    @ chillyroad….totally agree. women need to take a closer look at who they are laying with.

  • Kaeli

    Where did anyone say it was his or any man’s responsibility to raise another man’s child? Mentor, tutor, set an example for. That is what people do in a community. But we only want to talk about black community when we are trying to make us all a monolith and trying to make people feel like they aren’t “acting black enough” or “down”.

  • Skye

    Didn’t you say you never had daughters and looked at us as your children something like that on a makeup post?

  • JAY

    My daddy was poor, he never left. His daddy was poor, he never left. His grandfather was poor, he never left. Being involved in a life you created has nothing to do with economics, it’s called FAMILY VALUES!

  • march pisces

    @ jamesfrmphilly….have a great day james!…

  • Sasha

    What is wrong with what he said?

  • Kaeli

    Here is my question…Why is the answer to a discussion on absentee black fathers to talk about single mothers. Guess what? It isn’t let’s talk about one or the other it’s let’s discuss both. “Yea black men aren’t handling their business but black women need to keep their legs closed” is not a meaningful response. Talking about the fathers is not by any way letting the choices of the mothers off the hook. It really isn’t about blame but responses like these seem to be all about blaming one group for the problem over the other. Let’s stop the blame game and just talk.

  • GeekMommaRants

    Let’s join reality. Let’s look at 17 year olds boys and girls. What happens when they have to move because they are becoming adults. What happens? The girl gets pregnant to avoid homelessness. The boy joins a gang to avoid homelessness. They both have the same issue. No where to live once they age out of welfare, foster care, etc. Closed legs are homeless legs. When this changes everything does!

  • Kaeli

    Great excuse!!!! I guess that get’s you off the hook for participating in this community that you claim to love soooo much. Or do you only love the black community enough to talk over and over about how bad white supremacy has made it for us and about self hate.

  • AnGe

    Still really confused and disappointed by some of the reactions. Yes, there are bigger issues in our communities: an uneven distribution of wealth and access to resources

    Yes we all know this. What does that have to do with the absentee father issue. This is a problem. Its not just the men, its the women too. We need to make better choices. Personal responsibility is the way out of any mess. Black women need to make better choices about who we choose to be the fathers of our kids and fathers need to stay present and be proactive.

    It’s about enough with the whole “they started it” argument. Yes, “they” did. Af. Am. people did not get a fair shake in this country. Now that we know that and many a person has fought and even died for us to enjoy our many freedoms, how bout we embrace progress and move forward.

  • Kaeli

    Ok, white supremacy is the root of the problem…now what. It’s time for BLACK people to fix the problems created by years of white supremacy not sit down and just observe that that is causing us problems. The best way to fight white supremacy is the be successful. To have strong communities and strong families. To educate ourselves and take back the power over our lives. I agree that white supremacy has created issues but I refuse to let it hold me down.

    As far as your white mass killers with fathers in the home comment the answer is who cares. Like you said, black people have been dealt a different hand than white people therefore what might contribute to issues in one community might not be the issue in the other. The “crazy white male mass killer” is in no way the norm. These incidents might make the news but it isn’t an everyday occurrence. The drug dealers and gang members committing senseless acts of violence over perceived disrespect and stealing is. Let’s focus on viable ways to uplift our communities and stop focusing our much needed effort asking useless questions.

  • Mademoiselle

    I think you all are missing james’s joke.

  • Guest1234

    THANK YOU! From a policy position, he’s trying to do what he can to support his community. And we ALL know the wheels of policy change move very slowly. I don’t understand why it’s so wrong for him to say that there are things people can do at home, on an individual level, to help themselves, too.

    It’s like some of these black folks just want to be victims. So long as there’s white supremacy, blah blah blah to blame, they have an excuse to fail to take an active role in improving their own life/family/community circumstances. They choose to sit around and boo hoo every time someone says “there are things you can do to improve your own life, too.” It’s pathetic.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    the point that you miss is that people do NOT WANT HELP.

    the system of white supremacy has taught the younger generation that the older generation is no good. divide and conquer. older people could tell you a few things but YOU DON”T WANT TO HEAR IT.

    we warned you about GANGSTA, now you got l’ll wayne.

    the way the system of white supremacy works is to turn sub groups of black people against one another. old v young. male v female. light v dark. DIVIDE AND CONQUER!

    the capitalist system teaches that it is all about the individual.

    if it is all about the individual why would a male sacrifice for his woman and children? if we believe fully in individualism why would we form up strong community ties?

    i am telling you that the system of white supremacy/racism/capitalism teaches black people poison.

    anybody listening?

  • Kaeli

    Could not agree more. Love every word you posted.

  • AnGe

    Actually the media did bring up the upbringing of the the Sandy murderer. They analyzed his relationship with his mother and how troubled it was.

    The media often brings up the issue of the “broken home” when it comes to white murderers. Even with columbine, the media looked into bullying and lack of structure in schools and of course that same old gun control routine. They evaluated the relationship with the parents and their lack of supervision.

    Long story short, everyone has issues. Why get bent outta shape when someone talks about one of ours?

  • lil ray

    I cosign every thing he has said about this issue.

    “For a lot of young boys and young men in particular, they don’t see an example of fathers or grandfathers, uncles, who are in a position to support families and be held up in respect,” Obama said. “And so that means that this is not just a gun issue; it’s also an issue of the kinds of communities that we’re building.”

    “Too many fathers are M.I.A, too many fathers are AWOL, missing from too many lives and too many homes,” Mr. Obama said, to a chorus of approving murmurs from the audience. “They have abandoned their responsibilities, acting like boys instead of men. And the foundations of our families are weaker because of it.”

    Most black today are weak as hell straight up puzzy.

  • zena

    Mr James I so agree with you. I am a black person who did not vote for this HOUSE NEGRO. Black people just follow him blindly. I got tired of being verbally attacked by other blacks so I keep quiet about my distaste for his policies and his leniency on illegal immigration. Something that affects blacks more than anyone. I’m anxiously awaiting the end of his term so he can stop screwing up our country.

  • http://gravatar.com/niknique starr

    It doesn’t surprise me that a man would have a problem with what the president said. (I don’t see anything had to say). It seems like they always cry foul when they get called out, but love to point the finger at the women as the reason for the fatherless home. Women shouldn’t be absolve, but men should be held accountable, and they should be CALLED out when they are failing in their responsibilities.

  • Kaeli

    I am very happy that you took the time to do what you were suppose to do (no extra) and raised your OWN child. Sorry no props from me for doing exactly what you were suppose to do. But thanks for letting us know. So sad that fathers feel a sense of pride for doing exactly what they are suppose to do.

    Maybe now you can do something a little extra like uplift your community by mentoring, setting an example for, and bettering the life of another young man.

  • Skye

    @Jay Exactly my father did not make much money but would still come by days out the week and picked me up from school 5 days week. Still today he comes twice a week. I drive him around the mall its so simple Time is free people.

  • Mademoiselle

    So on the one hand: shame on fathers who don’t do what they’re supposed to do, and on the other hand: shame on fathers who do what they’re supposed to but don’t do even more?

  • D.T.

    First of all, my freedom is not secured. Secondly, please explain why you are so proud of a group of people that have accepted without revolt a culture of broken homes, no wealth and no accountability whatsoever for the position black people are in. Your answer (which you have stated on this site more than once) is to blame white people. You think it’s acceptable to sit back and say whats wrong with black people today when black people today are partially a result of the past failures of black people back then. And what your kind love to do when faced with the reality that you failed is turn the tables and ask what I am doing. As if that question can change anything about the downfall of the black family structure within the last 30 years.

    If it doesn’t apply let it fly. I will not make disclaimers by using words such as “most, some, a lot….etc” to appease anyone offended.

  • Kaeli

    @ Mademoiselle you miss my point. No one is saying shame on him or any man for doing exactly what he is suppose to do. Yes shame on men that don’t take on their responsibility but I don’t think men deserve praise for taking on the role they are suppose to. The point I was making is he isn’t doing anything extra by raising his own child. He is for sure doing his part as he should but he isn’t doing anything more.

  • http://gravatar.com/artwork100 WaterLove

    Sorry, I accidentally hit the down vote when trying to give you a thumbs up. I agree, I don’t see what is wrong with what he said either.

  • Kaeli

    I am listening and I agree 100% BUT The way to change that is to show people a different way and raise the believing this from young. The way to do that is to have strong black family ties and a strong community. James I get your point that the system is designed to work against us but to overcome this we have to teach our kids differently in the homes. Teach them that they are important enough for their fathers to stick around. Teach them that they are important enough to for us to help them with their homework. This changes begins in the home and then we must show them that they are important enough for other black people who aren’t even family to take time to helping them succeed in a flawed white supremacist system.

  • Cassia

    @Sasha yes well said, whats from with him addressing the elephant in the room, which is that there is no head at the head of the table

  • lil ray

    Don’t you all realized by now that he/she is nothing more than a Troll, whose only purpose on this website is to keep telling us how much superior white men are to black men.

    and by the way I do agree with him on this issue black men aren’t sh1t.

  • Kaeli

    Does biology mean that we can just excuse the actions of the men in this situation? I am not saying that women don’t have any responsibility. What I am saying is that we need to have BOTH conversations. The answer to a discussion on male responsibility is not a woman’s biology. Like I said it isn’t about blame and when we answer a talk about fathers about the bad choices of women we are making women the scapegoat. Both parties make poor choices in these situations not just women.

  • Mademoiselle

    I got what you’re saying, but you’re basically giving him a “so what” when he’s doing exactly what is claimed up and down this comment section to be lacking in the black community, and after he just was assumed to be part of the problem a couple threads up. It’s dismissive and forces men to play from behind to only make note when they overachieve in a conversation about underachieving men.

  • lil ray

    ^ Most black *MEN* today are weak as hell straight up puzzy

  • Kacey

    I have to say that I agree with D.T.

    And to Kaeli: no, you can not have a discussion about absentee fathers without also speaking about single mothers. If we accept the fact that it took two individuals to create that child then why should we blame the resulting broken home and dysfunction on just one parent’s actions? Where is the accountability of the mothers who made poor choices in mates?If these men are bums, why are these women having children with them? Don’t tell me these men just starting acting brand new after the umbilical cord was cut. He was a bum before you laid down with him, but you did so anyway! And just because the man is no longer around, why does that automatically mean that you give your son up to the streets? I see this so often – single mothers who just seem to have given up on their male children. It’s like they are saying “I can’t control him because he doesn’t have a father”; “I give up”. You’re still his parent, even if you’re the only parent!

    Let’s be honest, behind a lot of these delinquent youth is not only an absentee father but also a real f-ed-up mother as well.

  • Kaeli

    @chillyroad what is your point and how does it relate to my comment. I am saying that an older black man and his peers should not be encouraging his behavior and letting Mr. Shawty lo know that even his these women (who need mentoring of their own) liked his “swag” HE should not want to have children with all these women.

  • Skye

    It’s actually really disappointing the excuses being used. These are suppose to be the quality men bw are told to be dating and mating with. No wonder the community screwed if the decent don’t have responsibility than the bottom… I’m starting to believe the many rants of black comm being a matriarch and not because of women and the white man.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    what does that make the women who are having their babies?

  • Anon

    From this article, you would have thought the man went IN on black fathers. That was the NICEST way that he could have framed this. Black fathers NOT raising their children needs to be put on blast all day, errrr day as well as warning black women to NOT date a man who didn’t grow up with either a father in the home, or a familial male presence. Black communities aren’t dangerous because LaShawn and Crystal are shooting each other in the streets.

  • Yb

    Has it every occurred to some that the women laying down with “ain’t shit men” aren’t that stellar either?

    People always hold women to a higher standard then men. Many of these women procreating with these bums aren’t the creme of the crop and some of them aren’t in their right mind. So the whole “women close your legs”, “chose better men” mantra won’t work, when a portion of the women are just as bad as the men they lay with.

  • Anon

    @M
    Oh come on. Get real here. All of this “years” crap is just shunting off the immediate problem of absentee fathers and a crumbling family structure.

    I get the feeling that if y’all could get away with it, the story between you and James would be that white men came in the middle of the night and kidnapped all of the black men that would have happily raised their children and built the foundations of a sustaining community, therefore absolving black men of ANY personal responsibility whatsoever.

  • Anon

    Guest, a STADIUM of applause for your comment!

  • Okay

    No it does not make sense considering that the black men of the past had bigger financial problems then the black men of today. However, they still raised their children. People are just grasping for straws and looking for any old excuse now because they are embarrassed that this is being discussed publicly.

  • http://tontonmichel.tumblr.com Tonton Michel

    I don’t understand why the author would have an issue with this. Yes the president maybe harping on this but the problem persists and talking to black women about it will get you no were might as well target men.

  • Anon

    A reminder for the reading audience, James is 70 years old and he doesn’t have a family of his own. 70 years and not an ex-wife or children to speak of. Blaming white supremecy/racism/white anything is a way to derail from his own shortcomings in life. Note… black men are never responsible for ANY of their actions in his comments.

  • MySister’sKeeper

    I can’t believe the thumbs down to this comment. It’s like black women want to demean black men but refuse to acknowledge their role. Ridiculous.

  • Kaeli

    Good point. Didn’t look at it that way given the tone of the comments. I guess I was applying my logic on men who expect praise for doing what they are suppose to do in general and not considering his comment in the context of argument. Thanks for respectfully pointing out the issues with my response. Love a good, honest, respectful debate!

  • Kacey

    And let me be clear – I’m not trying to let men off the hook. But we need to be honest and look at the whole picture. The youth who are engaging in criminal activity and gang violence are NOT the product of some long-term relationships where the father just suddenly took flight! In many cases the parents are engaging in casual, reckless sexual activity with individuals they know very little about and where there was never talk of commitment. I grew up in a tough inner-city neighborhood and I saw it for myself. There’s no responsibility or accountability and often, having a baby is a means to get money out of the system. Why do you think the HIV/AIDS epidemic is as much as problem in these same communities as fatherless broken homes?

    It’s not about shifting the blame to women, it’s about shared blame.

  • MySister’sKeeper

    Yes, economics is EXACTLY the reason. Start there and see the change that follows.

  • Student

    This is great it’s a about time this issue was addressed. Loved the way he put it Stop acting like kids “dressing like your 12 when you are a big man, obsessed by material things like the bloody rims on your car and having a thick gold chain, wearing a grill, calling women bitches and hoes, when your kids know nothing about you or are in need of fresh nappies or milk. Stop breeding the whole fucking world like you are a Mandingo in Django. Go to college get an education stop listening to rick ross, fall in love get married, have a realistic amount of children that you can afford, teach your son how to be a man instead of hoping someone else will do it and grow up”,
    Bear in mind this is not directed to all blackmen just the ones President Obama is referring to. Not that this dose not apply to some females it’s just the topic is referring to blackmen

  • The Other Jess

    He also went in on single mothers too, not just fathers. He acknowledged that he had a single mother, but he still used single mothers as a platform for criticism. I think it’s silly for him to blame violence and pathologies on single mothers and missing Black fathers, when he is a product of both types and is a huge success story.

    He didn’t go to Sandy Hook or Arizona and criticize the mother or father of the boy who shot 20 people or Gifford, so he shouldn’t come to Black communities and blame the problems on these factors either. It’s silly, lazy, insulting and removes Black communities from the larger conversation around gun control and other protective measures and legislation needed to stop the violence.

  • Mademoiselle

    @Anon
    You’d be absolutely wrong to make that assumption about me. I never once said the discussion about absentee black fathers shouldn’t be had. My case has been about Obama using a long standing issue that would require a long-term fix to just about place blame on the black community for having the same problem that the white community has. My case has been that in a discussion Obama had with a black audience about gun violence, his solution was to find the fathers, whereas when he had the same discussion with a white audience, his solution was address legislation loopholes, act without hesitation, put a task force in place led by the VP, analyze schoolyard security, publicly condemn violence, publicly proclaim the innocence of those kids, etc. The black audience got a speech about how distraught he was over not having a father at home. The white audience got action, pledges, and funding.

    Furthermore, I never made an argument about white supremacy or white oppression. The only reason I bring up white people is because the president is giving them current-day preferential treatment, and doing it under the guise of being one of us.

  • Skye

    @James white supremacy

  • MySister’sKeeper

    black men this, black men that. How about black women that some responsibility and close their legs. So many of us are on here applauding Obama for demeaning black men, while downplaying the issue of unemployment and how that is directly correlated to violence. But let’s forget that. Get em’ Obama. Get those black men.

    Forget the fact that black women are letting black men slide up in them recklessly. If you are a single mother on here applauding Obama and his recent speech, go for it. But be sure to quickly thereafter grab a mirror and take a long hard look at your failure.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    “James is 70 years old and he doesn’t have a family of his own. 70 years and not an ex-wife or children to speak of”

    i raised a son who now lives in cali near his mom, my ex wife. i have too much family. i live alone by preference. that’s just me. at least you got the age right.

    do you ever actually READ what i post?

  • http://defendingmoney.wordpress.com Marketing Gimmicks

    …And this is why I love my President. When are we gonna drop the legacy of shame carried over from slavery?

    As my Grandma used to say: Speak the truth and shame the devil! A hit dog will holla when it hurt! The only people complaining about the truth being spoken are the very same people who contribute to the statistical shame that our people have become.

    Our men and our women are equally responsible and ACCOUNTABLE for their actions. Procreation is a responsibility!!! What’s so damn hard to comprehend about that. This isn’t about using white people as a measuring stick because they aren’t!!! Many whites are screwed in the mind and have their own kinds of problems (mental illness, depression, overly medicated) so who cares what they do?!!!

    This is about US: us having morals, values, and respect for ourselves and life!!!! I feel compassion for those innocent babies who lost their lives to that mentally ill circus freak but Newtown doesn’t compare to having shoddy values and the crutch of victimhood that some black people love to fall back on. Some of us love to bask in nignorance but then wanna get mad when you’re called out. Well I don’t care. Being poor is no excuse to kill another human being. And being poor doesn’t mean you can’t value life.

    My President is flawed just like any other human being but I’ll be damned if I knock him on this one.

  • march pisces

    and chillyroad eases the tension in the room….good one :-0…LOL

  • Anon

    Hispanic men take pride in creating and maintaining their families. You see these men crossing national borders and picking fruit to provide better opportunities for their children. Men who COULDN’T go to school mastering the English language. Banding together as a family unit to save up money to start businesses. Heck, even their GANGS are more organized.

    There will NEVER be improvement in the black community if 50% of the population is coddled an 25% with no home of their own.

  • Anon

    Where are the older black men? On this website policing women and crying about white supremacy.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    was it something i said?

  • The Other Jess

    When Obama speaks to white communities about the parenting skills, or lack thereof, of the shooters from Columbine, Sandy Hook, Arizona, Batman theater, and many other shootings, then he has the right to say the same in Black communities.

    But until then, he needs to stop scapegoating Black people.

    Black women do not have ESP or extra powers to automatically determine if a man is any good – in many cases, she may think the man she has is great but he turns out to be a deadbeat or wife beater. And many Black men who present themselves as decent may turn out to be junk – the same as men of any race. As well, Black men should not all beheld responsible for policing other men’s children. Sorry. Black women and Black men need helpful measures and policies to address the violence plaguing our communities as much as every other community in America – we don’t need unjust blame.

    Besides, the stats supposedly say that 70% of all Black children are born to single mothers – but guess what? Those 70% of all Black children are not violent or gangbangers – they are not causing the problem. There is a large minority of violent youth in the BC making it hard on everyone, not the majority. (By the way I am the product of two parents who both had single mothers, and came out just fine and well accomplished).

    Plus if you look at the level of gang violence among youth in other communities, like among Mexican Americans, the single mom/deadbeat dad argument goes out the window since Mexican families are largely 2-head households and intact, but have high rates of gang violence, drive by’s etc.

    The problem of violence in America and the urban areas is largely a societal one, a cultural disregard for life, across all demographics. Not just black single mothers or black missing fathers.

    Give me a break. People are brainwashed to the point of being braindead, including Obama.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    “black men are never responsible for ANY of their actions in his comments”

    the system of white supremacy is the problem…BLACK MEN are the solution

  • Mademoiselle

    If that’s the case, then he’s taking his speech to the wrong crowd. I’m willing to bet the audience he spoke to at Hyde Park was majority women — just like the church he spoke to on Father’s Day. If he’s trying to put a bug in shifty men’s ears, he needs to go where the shifty men congregate. So far, he’s been talking to mostly black women, and if he’s going to continue to do that, the least he can do is give those women resources to deal with the problem at hand because waiting for the men to get it together won’t solve anything in the near term.

  • Anon

    Aren’t you married? Do us all a favor and get off of the computer and introduce black women to your husband’s friends. BTW, I and dang near anyone else hardly believes you’re a woman, much less married, but just in case miracles occur, go out there and help a sister out!

  • lil ray

    Do you? please tell us.

  • Anon

    Is there ever a moment when black men take responsibility in your world? Also if you ARE married, I find it very telling that your husband isn’t black, and that you don’t do anything in the black community personally.

  • Anon

    Who said anything about kids. Trust there are enough grown dudes that have no idea what a responsible man does.

  • Yb

    Wtf are you talking about? What does twitter, a security guard, and Atlanta have to do with what I said?

  • gmarie

    If you want long term solutions you’ve got to get to the root of it. No kid gloves, no tap dancing. It is time we are taken to task on our parental priorities by someone we actually hold in high regard.

    I think the reason many blacks seemed so.. turned off by Bill Cosby’s statements on our community. At the time they were made, he was no longer on TV, and no longer relevant in mainstream pop culture (at that moment) People looked at him as an honery old man berrating young people because he had nothing better to do.. Barack is relevant in the now. A large number of blacks love and respect him. No better time to address the community then when you’ve got their attention

  • Anon

    Yes we do. He’s told us many times. Basically… Not a G-DD-MN thing.

  • Anon

    The reason I know you’re a man is because you always talk about women “opening their legs”. I’ve only heard men have such a disconnect with a woman’s body or person.

  • The Other Jess

    Here’s the problem – Obama himself is a product of a single mother and missing Black father. But guess what? he obvioulsy cam eout OK – more than OK. As do many “urban” youth from similar home situations. He should not blame urban crime on “single mothers” or “missing fathers”. That is just not the reason for the crime.

    Did he criticize the mothers of the white male mass shooters? Did he examine their fathers? NO. Why? Because he understands that there are larger problems leading to the violent youth in America than what demographic their household falls into.

    He can’t have it both ways . If he’s going to criticize single mothers and deadbeat fathers as the problem, then he needs to criticize HIS OWN single-mother-who-didn’t-close-her-legs and HIS OWN deadbeat-father-who-didn’t-stay. Obviously Obama’s mother didn’t choose her man well either, as he dumped her before the baby came. Do we criticize her too and tell her she should have “kept her legs closed” like you all are so happy to tell Black women? Or tell Obama’s father about how he is a deadbeat who may have led Obama to failure and a gangbanger? Please.

    Everyone, including other Black people should get out of the black communities bedrooms and start dealing with the REAL reasons for violent crime in America.

  • Anon

    @Kaeli
    M & James are TRYING to miss your salient points. There is little to no confusion there. But thank you so much for making them. There’s some young black woman out there reading them and taking notes.

  • GeekMommaRants

    Why is it we expect the President to wake us up, dress us and feed us? POTUS has not done anything? Helathcare, is nothing? unemployment benefits nothing? This black man has lived in DC for almost five years and has done nothing? I voted twice for nothing? No, no, no! No president enacts my plans I do! We wanna be helpless and no one buying

  • http://commentarybyvalentina.wordpress.com Val

    @Kacey

    I agree with you. Obama’s strategy is that if everyone in a failed community believes all the ills of that community are of their own making, then that relieves him and other politicians and society in general of any responsibility.

    Then they can all sit back and shake their heads at how terrible Black people are.

    The more difficult thing to do is rather than giving tired speeches to propose legislation to make these communities Free Trade Zones. to lobby business to being jobs in, to develop strategies for long-term investment.

    But, these days none of that is required because most Black people can’t see the forest for the trees. They have been brainwashed to believe that all of these ills are the fault of trifling Black folks.

    And when JamesfromPhilly mentions White Supremacy these folks attack him and defend White folks more than White folks would defend themselves.

    There are root causes and systematic issues that keep families in poverty for generations. These systems operate at full bore today but are much less conspicuous than they were decades ago. So, unfortunately many Black people think they don’t exist anymore and that these Black people just want to live like they are living.

    The greatest strength of White Supremacy is that it is able to convince the victims of it to defend it by denying its existence.

  • Anon

    Closed legs are homeless legs???? I don’t EVEN want to know how you came about that phrase, but WHERE IS THEIR FAMILY???? Why are they being thrown out of the house at 18? Where are the other relatives? WHERE ARE THEIR FATHERS?

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    is there anyone here who actually thinks that the MAJOR PROBLEM in the black community is the poor behavior of black males? really?

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    I agree with the author and here is why: A large part of the president’s job is rhetoric, and as we know, rhetoric isn’t a policy, it serves as a symbol to the voting public and the rest of the world of the ideals of the president, who is representing the country as a whole. For this reason, the president will NEVER…and I repeat NEVER say that Israeli’s need to chill with the whole Palestinian thing in a speech to a group of Jews. Nor will he tell a group of latinos to get their ish together in their native countries and stop looking to America for freedom. This is because what you say will inevitably affect your votes and popularity and he’s not trying to mess it up. It is sad that the only time Barack Obama specifically names black people in his rhetoric, it is in the form of admonition. Anytime he talks about positives for the black community, he never explicitly says its for us, but it’s supposed to be Implied, yet when the message pertains to negative things going on in our community, he has no problem naming names. The sad thing is the he got nearly 100% of our votes, and because of this, we are being neglected rhetorically and, arguably, politically. That’s crazy!

    Rhetoric is important, and so far the message he is sending is “blacks are only worth mentioning to point out their individual shortcomings.” One of the only times I remember Obama slipping up and criticizing white people in the same way was when he said “they” (even then he was smart enough not to say whites) cling to their guns and religion. He got flack for that and never made that mistake again. Even though this happens to be true to an extent, it’s still a matter of not offending your voting base. Telling black men to get their ish together is not a policy. People have been saying it for years and obviously it’s not doing anything. Honestly, Sometimes for things to change u have to work backwards. Just like they did with smoking and they are now doing with obesity, you change the actions first and that may trickle on down to changing the attitudes. Anyone who knows a little bit about policy should know that people respond to INCENTIVES and don’t just change their morals overnight. The communities Obama speaks of need some kind of incentives to change shit around and unfortunately there are not enough lawmakers with creative solutions because they use the same “get your ish together” attitude and sadly other black people nod their head, agree, and keep it moving. Overt racism didn’t change because white people woke up and became better, moral people. It changed because people DIED, which made lawmakers pay attention and do something. Laws got changed and white people couldn’t do nothing but abide by the rules, and thus attitudes changed through the generations. If Obama were serious he wouldn’t be coming out his mouth with just “black fathers get it together”.

  • Mademoiselle

    @Anon
    Please stop speaking for me. I don’t need the assistance, especially when you keep getting it wrong.

  • The Other Jess

    I 100% AGREE WITH JAMESFRMPHILLY, FOR ONCE, except for the part of withdrawing support from obama. While I don’t always agree with him, his sentiments are similar to ones many Black people express too. And i always think they are so silly..

    It doesn’t make an ounce of sense to require black people to be the only group of people who are told to fix the violence problem all by ourselves when white people get policies, legislation, sympathy and all other form of help to fix their violence problem. White criminals’ mother’s choices or fathers familial status never come into question.

    It’s ridiculous that Black people should get preached down to like that.

  • Student

    We are not disregarding black women’s failures. It’s just we are addressing blackmens. We as women persistently put each other down about weave vs natural, light vs dark, fat vs thick.
    It is a intermittent occasion for us to address blackmen, and the rationale for doing so was prompted by a man who is the most powerful man in the world, who is black, it was his idea and now we have made it a discussion.
    How is acknowledging the problem demeaning blackmen. I love blackmen but would be a fool if I didn’t address the massive elephant in the room. Yes, we have the availability of conception but becoming a single mum doesn’t always happen due to quick irresponsible shag. You could get married have four children and then your husband leaves you and then you’re a single mum. Blackmen also tend to have several different households so even if he wanted to he can’t financially and emotionally provide for all of them, how is that your fault as women. Not saying that women don’t contribute to this circle, but why do we have to be made to feel guilty due to recognizing it.
    Please don’t turn this into another debate women vs men cause that’s not what it is about.

  • Anon

    You are trying to let men off the hook by re-directing a conversation about absent men to talk about single moms, who are least ARE feeding and clothing those children. At least other posters put up a different smokescreen involving white supremacy, this just dodges black male responsibility entirely.

    Let these men be treated like MEN, and allow even a soft-pedal conversation on some epic failures. If you grew up in a tough inner city neighborhood, may I ask where your father was?

  • Pat

    I’m squeezing my comment in (time constraints today). However, I must chime in by building from this statement made by @ Victoria! This is the bottom line: “We ARE building weak communities with weak men.” In other words, it is impossible to build a strong foundation without strong examples. THIS IS THE PROBLEM. Gun control is just “a part” of the problem. We are giving easy access of weapons to weak and troubled minds with negative influences. While we need gun control, the problem will still exist because the root (the foundation – structure) of it is STILL present. President Obama is absolutely correct AGAIN.

    It is beyond the fathers being in the home—it is the pattern being set before these young men. No one is there to set a good example. If the father is in a gang, jail or didn’t have any direction, then the young male is struggling. I agree Women can make better choices, but what if they didn’t have a good example to follow? I’m not passing blame. I just believe there is room for self-improvement from all spectrums (community, parents, and government) to curve this urban violence. However, it starts with positive men (not necessarily the FATHER). I believe if the father is setting a bad example, his son will do better away from that environment and place within a better one. Regardless of how much of a negative influence a young man’s father or older male, he will still seek his approval.

    And we don’t talk about it enough of what these Father are doing wrong as long as they are present. If a father is treat his son more like one of his boys, that’s a problem. I don’t think a [father] should smoke with their sons, drink, or teach them how to settle disputes with violence. If they display this type of behavior in front of them, this is what is being taught. What are the fathers who are present teaching their sons? We are way stricter about what mothers are teaching our daughters? Which is rightfully so, but just as it is not cool for women to exemplify certain behaviors in front of their daughter – it should be the same for fathers and sons. We tend to stop at is the Father in the home and is he in your life, responsibility entails more than showing up. These young men are going to build off what they see.

    Urban dysfunction is actually more of a generational dysfunction…and this is our problem. I have often wondered where the grandfathers or the uncles are. Obviously, they’re M.I.A as well. Think about if the mothers are missing—grandma or auntie will step in. Until these young men stop raising themselves and following after negative examples, the problem will continue to ensue. It is actually sad and ridiculous that the president has to continue to tell our men to do better.

    While I agree with nationwide gun control, having a positive male influence is the [main] missing puzzle to make our communities stronger.

  • Kam

    Hispanics actually have higher rates of poverty and lower rates of educational achievement, yet they have lower rates of OOW births. There’s going to be a point where we have to admit that part of the problem is cultural.

  • Anon

    No you’re not. OWN your opinions. By the way, what time is it in England right now?

  • The Other Jess

    i’m sorry, but i’m agreeing with JAMESFRMPHILLY on this one. It’s tiring. If Obama was going to give this speech on parenting, he should have done the same at Sandy Hook and other centers of white violence.

    I agree with James – how are Hadiya Pendleton’ss murderers any different than Joan Benet Ramsey’s murderers? Are white criminals parents blamed, or instead, does law enforcement actually go about the business of doing their jobs and go after the killers?

    When the victim is white, we go after the killers and write policy and legislation. When the victim is Black we blame every other Black person who has nothing to do with the crime, from the parents to the secretary or construction worker down the block .

    It’s true that it is because we believe we are inferior and deserve less than others.

  • The Other Jess

    Agree totally, Mademoiselle. Black people deserve to be a part of the broader conversation of gun control and anti-violence policies and legislation too. Our communities obviously need more help to end the violence, just as those in the wider American populace. If white parents are getting lectured, then neither do we need to be. We need solutions, not lectures.

  • victoria

    Solutions…I provided a list of solutions…All no or low cost.
    These men dont have to be at their baby mama’s house to spend time with their children. They can pick their kids up from school, take them to the park, take them to their own homes (if the lasted baby mama doesnt mind), etc. Chicago – walk along Lake Michigan. Sit on the porch of Grandma’s house. Send a daily text message.
    And why wouldnt his constant presence work wonders for his children long term?

  • The Other Jess

    @ kylieky, would you deny that obama didn’t make that same lazy, scapegoating speech when talking to the communities where white criminals come from?

  • Kay

    This is such a multi-faceted issue. I think the bottom line is this: we have to attack this problem from multiple angles. First, we need to address the broadening income inequities, lack of job opportunities as well as the sad state of our educational system. At the same time, we need to teach BOTH young Black men and women the value of their bodies. Teach them that there are alternatives to having unprotected sex, and that there is nothing wrong with waiting for the right person and concentrating on other things. We need to stop the onslaught of attack on programs geared to teaching youth and young adults about safer sex practices, prevention and STD’S. We need to also start a conversation about sex and self worth in our communities. Which means unpacking a whole lot of things we don’t want to really talk about, including how we look at each other and ourselves, how we treat each other as human beings and how Black men and women can learn to relate and support one another. But I guarantee you, if we pull together and start doing this, the people in power will take notice. They will not like it. They will try to put roadblocks in the way and chip away at any new encroachments we make, but we just have to keep right on going.

    I don’t see this as a Black man vs. Black woman thing. I see this as an issue for all of us to get on board and start working on. It’s like if there’s a fire. Are you going to argue over who started it or are you going to put it out? We need to put this fire out and address these issues, SOON.

  • Anon

    My bad… A reminder for the reading audience… James is 70 years old and no longer married. While he lectures black women on the internet about how to live their lives he is NOT… mentoring other black men, NOT volunteering in the community, NOT helping other seniors, NOT doing a lot of things.

    If black MEN are the solution, apparently they’re spending their time lecturing young black women to do something while they stay at home. Basically the same plan of action for the past 20 years.

  • The Other Jess

    @Kaeli, your statement is just amazing. why is it that you drank the kool-aid and believed that most white criminals have unaddressed mental illness but cannot see that maybe Black violence stems from the same thing? Or that white criminals have no more mental illness than black criminals? It’s sad tht you are willing to give a pass in the caseof white violence, but not when it comes to the same problem n black communities. SMH.

  • Anon

    Obama was raised by an Asian step-father and White grandparents. That’s the difference.

    ““single mothers” or “missing fathers”. That is just not the reason for the crime.” 9 times out of 10 that IS the reason for crime. Yes, children from single parent households are MORE likely to commit crimes, have out of wedlock children, not graduate high school (much less college), you name it.

  • The Other Jess

    And guess what, Anon? Hispanics have almost as high rates of youth and gang violence as Black people do. So why not address the bigger societal issue of American violence and it’s root cause to find solutions, instead of blaming Black men and women’s partnership choices. Are y’all crazy?? We can get understanding and sympathy for white murderer victims and their communities but blame and hatred when they’re Black?? Really???? WOW.

  • apple

    if james is 70 and can use a computer easily this is a miracle. my mom and aunt is 50 and struggle thru even searching google and my grandma? i dont even think she know was the internet is

  • Chillyroad

    He is talking to his voter base. He is like a Pastor. Don’t alienate your congregation.

  • Pat

    I agree! I agree..

  • Kam

    There was a girl sitting behind Obama when he was making his speech on gun control. Hours later, her sister Janay McFarlane was shot in the head in a case of mistaken identity. She leaves behind a 3-month old child. Obama is right, it goes beyond gun control.

  • Anon

    Women are not at the head of any table. If we were, then most of us would be married, owning a home, and raising our children with a responsible, caring man. That’s clearly not what’s going on here. And you need to do a bit better in trying to come across as a woman. That comment REEKED of bitter dude.

  • Kaeli

    Did I say that. Nope. I did not mention white violence. I talked about MASS SHOOTINGS. They are not the typical act of violence but what the news like to focus on and typically perpetrated my people with mental illness. If a black person walked into a school and shot a bunch of small children I would chock it up to mental illness as well.

  • victoria

    that was funny

  • Anon

    @YB,
    Chillyroad is a man who hates black women. Read his past posts. Notice how excited he is to bring up anything about “legs”, fights, Matriarchy, etc… . I’d guess him to be about 40 years old with a string of failed relationships.

  • someonewhoisworriedwhythefuckjamesisonhere

    @jamesfrmphilly lol you just got called out ,shame

  • Mademoiselle

    victoria,
    All of your suggestions are great suggestions. Realistically speaking, though, how long do you think it would take for the solutions you suggested to take root and bring down the rate of gun violence in Chicago (including the men having a change of heart and getting involved in their kids’ lives, the women forgiving them enough to let them back into their kids’ lives, the kids who are already shooting each other up taking heed to their fathers’ newly active role, the kids finding other things to do than shoot people up in their spare time, and the trend spreading widely enough to make a statistical impact)? I don’t raise this question because none of this should take place, which all of it should. I raise it because when you compare how long it would take for Obama to call on the Illinois state officials to put a statewide task force in place, give them a deadline for devising a plan to address gun violence/gun trafficking/inappropriate access to guns/safe zones, provide them with the funds to allow them to enforce their new plans, and place expectations on those officials to make a dent in their state’s statistics by a certain date, which approach do you think would make Chicago a safer place to live quicker? It’s not right for the president to tell black people it’ll get better when black people figure out how to make it better, and tell white people he’s working to make it better immediately.

  • The Other Jess

    Anon, you’re reaching there. I mean really. Again, the overwhelming majority of the children from single parent households in the Black community are not doing the crime. A small percentage of youth are guilty of many crimes. The problem is so much more than single mother/absent father, for the Black community as mush as the white and broader American community.

    Your argument is that Black people should solve the violence problem oall on our own, and she be removed from seeking solutions through broader societal policies and legislation. That is blatantly unfair and ultimately racist.

    When criminals harm people in white communities, to the point that those communities can no longer deal with the crime on their own, they ask for help form government and other powerful bodies that can do a more effective job than they. Why shouldn’t black people ask the same?
    Many Black communities are much poorerer than white or Asian communities and do not have the resources to do violence-preventing initiatives, such as renovating abandoned buildings in order to eliminate gang hideouts or building large scale entertainment and retail centers so that youth have more to do than hang out on the streets. Black communities need HELP, not insulting preaching.

    White communities acannot solve the violence problems on their own so they are asking for help. Black communities canot solve the violence problems on our own so we are asking for help too. There is absolutley nothing wrong with that.

  • Anon

    Really? Most people that I know loathe the day that their parents and grandparents discovered GChat and Facebook. And boomers love stuff like the Ipad. Anyway, James could be using some of this internet time to be on a site for young BLACK MEN, telling them about the ways of the world.

  • Chillyroad

    Student

    You talking a gang of ish right now. I can’t wait till Africans take over the UK and replace you ineffectual Afro Caribs in the UK. You’ve been in the UK for close to 50 years and haven’t done nothing. Don’t come in here trying to lecture black Americans or black men. American culture wouldnt be what it is today without black men. Black men and women made it possible to have a half black President. You will never have a black Prime Minister. Y’all too busy trying to breed yourselves out.

  • Kaeli

    Thanks for posting this. Your perspective is much needed and spot on!

  • The Other Jess

    BTW, Anon, my parents both had single mothers, and they were not raised by whites or Asians, and they came out great, just as I did. Successful, professional, well-traveled. What, you think that only Asians and whites can keep a Black child from becoming a gangbanger or pregnant teen and lead them to success?

    Your statement is pathetic and scary in it’s self hate, if you are black. You truly believe Black people are inferior.

  • Kacey

    @ Anon – Absolutely Not! The truth is, the mothers of most of these thugs are no better than the fathers. EVEN IF the fathers were to stick around, what kind of influence do you think these fathers would really be? Do you think these are mature, responsible men with stable jobs? Do you think sticking around will make them more mature and responsible? The men are often a mess, but so are the mothers!

    You can’t tell me any different.

  • Kaeli

    @Jess please in my comment show me where I mentioned white violence. If you read closer you will see about connecting mental illness with MASS MURDER. Crimes like that happen infrequently and are outside the norm of gun violence so using these events to discuss the typical gun violence in black communities is pointless. In no way did I say that white criminals suffer from mental illness and black criminals are just bad hateful people.

  • alexmark

    Black fathers not present and therefore not playing an active positive role in their child/childrens lives are a dominant reason for the dysfunction in black communities nationwide. President Obama is right and he should keep saying so every chance he gets. I know so many young black women who are left to shoulder the role of child rearing on their own. This is not only unfair, it is patently cruel. They don’t desert their kids. They hold two and three jobs and do the best they can. Raising children is no joke, especially when they hit those crazy rebellious teenage years. It takes lots of effort, time, energy and lots of prayers to keep them on track and that requires two active parents and sympathetic extended family members. I know what I’m talking about. I’m a divorced father of two who’ve played an active role in raising and rearing my two sons since the day they were born. They are now two productive, ambitious young men who will no doubt live exemplary lives. But it wasn’t easy. During those teenage problem years when they were being influenced by negative peers and being disrespectful to their mother, if I wasn’t around to enforce discipline and do whatever it took to keep them on track, their lives would be spiraling out of control like so men of our young men. Parenting is very rewarding, but it requires time and lots and lots of patience. When more black men stop being so weak, irresponsible and lazy and leaving childrearing to the mothers of their children, there will be a dramatic turnaround in the quality of life in our communities.

  • The Other Jess

    ‘course they’re not listening. Everybody’s too busy preaching down to the mothers and fathers of murder victims and the Black community generally, instead of using their God-given rights to demand action and policies, like everybody else in America.

  • kamille

    It really is more than just gun violence and building weak communities, it’s ALL about poverty and lack of opportunity. And someone, maybe a commenter or the writer herself, mentioned the system itself gets largely ignored. Do you honestly think that if we put some welding tools or other forms of trade into these young men’s hands, that they would sit around and shoot each other up and sell drugs? What we have is more than just moral decay, it’s capitalism decaying our communities and our structures. People don’t just get involved in gangs and drugs just for some super special awesome fun times, it’s a mode of survival caused by poverty. And Obama has YET to genuinely talk about poverty as it intersects race-real talk just BLACK PEOPLE.

    It’s more than just ‘pull yourself up by the bootstraps’ and the whole ‘trickle down’ morality b.s. that these black men need. This is why I’m in agreement with Cornel West’s assertion of Obama being a “republican in blackface”.

  • victoria

    You stated , ”black issues=black problems,”…my sentiments exactly. I dont care about the disparity in his approach. Waiting for Obama to address everyone fairly isnt going to make a difference concerning US. I asked this in my earlier commentt, if Obama addressed the white community in the same manner will this make a difference in our community? Will absentee dads then decide to parent their children?

  • MySister’sKeeper

    Again, shirking responsibility. How can you speak to the men without speaking to the women? It is a rarity that these black single mothers were once married and then abandoned by their husbands. That is not our reality. How do we continue to address black men and remain silent on black women. I would love for this magazine and other black sites to get real about black single women. It’s not a badge of honor….AT ALL.

    How do we expect black men to feel guilty for their role in this mess but not expect black women to hold their head down in shame as well. I would love to see Mrs. Obama address single mother. Will never happen! I would love to hear her tell black women to value marriage, not being someone’s baby mama. Why not demand that we protect our reproductive health.

    At the end of the day, it solves nothing laying the blame. It’s about moving past the rhetoric and taking action. How will yet another of these speeches change gun violence in Chicago? It wont. So if we’re just going to speak, we should vocal about all parties involved.

  • Kacey

    @ Anon – My father was present and involved in my life, BUT (1) my father was educated and always employed, and (2) we were also immigrants from the Caribbean (that may have had an affect, as our values did seem different from many of the Americans around us).

    We lived in the “hood” from the time we first came to this country (when I was 8) until I was in high School (right before I turned 16), when were able to by a house in a nicer area.

    My Parents worked hard to get us out of that neighborhood, but, I spent quite a few years witnessing the mess around us, and I still have a peripheral view of it as I still live in NYC.

  • Kam

    No actually Mexican communities in America have lower rates of gun violence despite having higher poverty levels and lower levels of academic achievement. Blacks by far lead the pack in violence.

    Obama doesn’t need to talk to Sandy Hook, Aurora or Tucson because those communities weren’t suffering from gun violence before. I actually live in Tucson, despite having high rates of poverty, being ranked 48th-50th in education and being in a gun-loving red state with a large population of Hispanics, we actually don’t have the same amount of gun violence as a city like Chicago or Detroit. Chicago’s been having murders every week while Sandy Hook has not.

    There is a cultural mindset that needs to be changed. A culture of combativeness and violence has been accepted for far too long.

  • Kaeli

    I think they are a pretty big problem in the black community. Not the only one of course but a pretty big one. I truly believe that a man believing he has not responsibility to spend time with his child or provide financially for them is MAJOR PROBLEM. There was a time where black men would be ashamed if they did this but not TS the norm and if they have enough kids its a badge of honor. So yes I think men with no damn shame or sense of responsibility is a pretty big deal.

    *By no means am I saying black women not protecting themselves and giving these loser “men” the time of day isn’t a problem. That is a major issue as well.

  • omfg

    just because a person doesn’t want to attribute all the ills of black people to white supremacy doesn’t mean he/she doesn’t acknowledge it exists and impacts people’s lives.

    what bothers me is when i hear black people like you who may be educated (college, etc.), professional, etc. address the situation in a way that excuses poor behaviour and effort of others even though you would never employs those low standards in your own life.

    white supremacy is alive. it sure is. but, the difference is you have rights as a black person – you CAN be educated. you CAN make a change in your life, even today. i look at my life and that of my 84 year old grandmother (a Louisiana high school drop out who was strict and emphasized education to her four children) and i can definitely see where racism kept her from achieving things.

    the mentality you support coddles people and makes it okay for them to have low expectations for themselves and those around them. if all you have to do is blame white people, you can never do anything.

    it’s simply a poor mentality to have. it contributes to a despairing mindset that pervades the black community. stop enabling bad behaviour.

  • The Other Jess

    @james: I 100% think that many of the major problems with violnce and crimes in ALL communities stems from the poor behavior of their men. Period. Which is why some of pres. obama’s comments were so inappropriate. All communities face these issues, which is why the conversation around youth violence and control exists in the wider American society . Black people need to be a part of that instead of just blaming one and another.

    Obviously our communities need more help than we can give, regarding violence. White people are not the only ones who deserve sympathy and understanding. Black men committing crimes need to be understood just as white men doing the same, so that we can effectively end these problems Black men and women blaming everything bad in the world on each other solves nothing. If other communities can ask foe help and legislation, so should we.

  • omfg

    all i can say is, i’m glad obama knows who the real problem is.

    ha ha… he’s not blaming black women.

    where are all the black male internet trolls who love to insult black women and tell us we’re the root of the problem? go argue with your black male president…lmao.

  • Chillyroad

    James

    Sending a child to Yale is a huge accomplishment. Its an elite institution. Congratulations on your sons success. Because of you and your ex wife co-parenting you sent a kid to one of the worlds best schools.

    If any of these black women sent their kid to Yale you wouldn’t hear the end of it.

  • The Other Jess

    OMG, bk chick – you just said it ALL. What you said is all that needs to be said, THANK YOU!

  • Icy-Road

    You seem to have a problem with EVERY black person. You talk crap about black Americans now you are defending black Americans to attack Afro Brits and I have seen you do the opposite. You like division period!

  • kamille

    Now this is interesting! Because it sort of knocks that myth of the invisible black man in the home. I truly believe that the biggest problem is poverty and lack of resources versus moral decay (less black marriages, etc.).

    If we just think about this, logically. If we gave every young man an opportunity to work on an oil rig, weld, factory, or some sort of trade or union job where they could make a liveable wage-would they really be involved in gun violence and not supportive of their children? The problem is that young black people in the hood have no incentives to produce productive children or be productive citizens themselves, because there are no resources nor legacies to leave behind. There really is nothing to lose out there! It’s not like a black family in the suburb who has networks and resources with something to lose.

    I’ll say this and say it again. More than just morality, we need financial structure. It’s easier for a poor man with a kids and a family to just up and leave, to lighten the load. Then he’ll have only one mouth to feed. But if we give this man a labor union job with benefits or if we had black-owned businesses, we’re really flipping the script here.

    I see a lot of people comment and say ‘well my daddy was poor and he stayed with momma’, well congrats, life doesn’t work out like this. People actually need resources. People actually need a sustainable mode of living to make it through. And that’s great that love got your parents through. But we live in a capitalist society, where airy fairy ideas of love just don’t cut it as an incentive.

  • omfg

    @jamesfromphilly

    yes, i believe a major problem in the black community is the fact that black boys and men do not behave responsibly.

    do you remember the million man march led by farrakahn? wasn’t that about acknowledging the faults of black men and trying to atone for these issues/mistakes?

    i believe it was.

  • Anon

    Right here. *raising my hand*

  • Kacey

    @ Anon – Disrespectful and Low-Brow! Shame on you!

    You don’t now anything about that man. Even if he is 70 – he’s probably seen and experienced more than you ever will. And even if he doesn’t have a wife or ex-wife, does that make him less of a person? How many wives/husbands have you had? Does that number (0 to infinity) make your perspective on issues less valid? GTFOH!

  • Anon

    Dude, stop with the LMAO, and “jokes”. If you’re going to be a D*ck about something, have the courtesy to not be a coward as well.

  • Kam

    It brings up a point though. I think one part of our problem is that too many African Americans think it’s ok to react violently and aggressively to relatively minor problems. It breeds a culture of violence. So much so that now television channels are coming to us for cheap and easy ratings. Could you imagine a show full of South Asian doctors and doctor’s wives that think it’s ok to punch and hit people over petty problems?

  • http://gravatar.com/nolakiss16 binks

    Bingo! You deserve a prize! I guess my mom was right…hit dogs do holler…and can we STOP the “well white people or non-black people do it too and have such in such…” who gives a damn we are worried about OUR community and the people in it. Just because others do it doesn’t make your sh*t stink less, sh*t is sh*t wake up people.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    i worked on wall street doing back office data processing on main frame supercomputer networks for several decades…

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    i worked on the teams that developed the software for the original ATM systems…

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @someonewhoisworriedwhythefuckjamesisonhere

    ^5

  • Icy-Road

    Chilly what is wrong with you? You live in the UK and you are also married outside your race=breeding out? You have major issues

  • KnowYourHistory

    I haven’t been posting on Clutch for long, but one thing I’ve noticed RIGHT AWAY; James, is that you ain’t never lied, my dude. Props for enduring the Clutchettes’ disappointed wrath, as you constantly seek to keep their oft-bedazzled, rose-colored eyes on the true problem underlying the reason why blacks get leapfrogged over by every other group. It’s an inconvenient truth that Black women oftimes are a little too busy being fabulous, and accomodating to whites, to see.

    “we eat that stuff up.”

    Not black men; that’s why WE remain, largely “on the outs” with white people. Black women more readily go for the white people’s “okie-doke” WAY more readily than the men. That’s why Black men and male youth have to continually be marginalized. Black woman will follow white people ANYWHERE, as long as you dangle “God” in front of them, swath it in needless, overpriced “fashion”, ( as exemplified by the willingness to “follow” by altering their natural [hair] attributes ), or blame Black men and male youth.

    White people did NOT get to the top of the social-economic pyramid by adhering to the teachings that they foist on Black people in church on Sunday. Nope. White men got on top by virtue of the sword, and the firearm. They’ve maintained their REAL agenda and control in the backrooms of their clubs and “associations” on Saturday night. See, Black men have LONG peeped the white man’s hole card, LONG pulled the curtain back, LONG sought to be NATURAL MEN, and as a result we have LONG been ostracized, and marginalized.

    Black people will NEVER garner anything NEAR the commensurate wealth that whites have accumulated, by going to church, and “believing”; it’s not gonna happen.
    Despite their heavy p.r., whites DID NOT get to the top that way.

    Humans are human. I’ve always maintained that. It’s just that as a legacy of slavery, whites have ALWAYS had the financial wherewithal to construct their OWN image to be viewed by Black women, and the rest of the world.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    now tell me : do you think black men are INTRINSICALLY defective?

  • victoria

    What do you suggest we do?

  • Kaeli

    I understand that is takes both parties and that women are making poor choices but the response to absentee fathers is not ” women need to pick better men”. We already know women need to pick better men but at the same time men need to within themselves have enough pride to know that they need to take care of their children. All I am saying is a discussion about men not taking care of their responsibility can be had and solutions discussed without making women the scapegoat

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @bk chick

    thank you sister

  • GeekMommaRants

    Everyone says this Stay the fvck away from Black men, even Black men. Ladies are we being lied too??

  • Step

    Everyone stop replying to this person’s comments ignore all of them

  • The Moon in the Sky

    ‘Pampers’ is the name of the brand.

  • AnGe

    You don’t need ESP to figure out if a man is good or bad. You just need patience, common sense, and critical thinking skills. Don’t try to excuse women from consciously making poor choices in who they CHOOSE to procreate with.

    Your point about Mexicans leading the charge is gang violence, I believe is an outcome of numbers. There are more hispanics than blacks so of course their numbers are going to be higher.

  • v

    For every young black thug walking around in sagging pants and a doo-rag, there is at least one young black thugette who wants to have his baby. Nothing will improve until we address this reality.

  • laLa

    Someone said everyone should stop replying to this person’s comments ignore all of them. I think that’s a good idea.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @anon

    do you really hate that much?

    prior to my discovery of CLUTCH i spent %100 of my free time with brothers. this is my first try at speaking with sisters.

    i FOUGHT the civil rights movement and i have spent my life working towards black liberation. i have the SCARS on my body if you would care to see them.

    i’m now 70 and retired. i no longer have the strength to be out in the streets. is it ok with you if i rest now?

  • Nubian

    Student ignore @chillyroad like step suggested

  • anonymous

    When a young black woman chooses to open her legs for a degenerate who has 8 kids by 6 women, she is a major part of the problem. The president will never hold certain black women accountable for their sexual choices because he knows better

  • MySister’sKeeper

    It would make more sense socially, but not economically. The welfare system has by and large had a negative impact on these “real men” staying in the home. We are talking about a community that has a rate of unemployed vastly higher than any other. When we are talking about rampant gun violence, this is occuring in poor neighborhoods where jobs are not available and there is a necessary dependence of government assistance. The way the system works, however, is where there is a 2 parent home, whether unemployed or underemployed, the needed government assistance is often not available. And while I am not a proponent of welfare, I can still see how the need or desire for these benefits have had such a devastating impact on the black community. Economically, it makes more sense to have a single parent household and receive government subsidy than to hope that such little income, if any at all, would be an immense help. If jobs were available, you would see stability in these communities and the resurrection of the black family.

  • Chillyroad

    Moon

    Pampers has become a catch all for diapers. Anyway don’t let Afro Caribs from the UK come talking about black Americans. I can see through her glass house.

  • Kaeli

    No I do not. I think the cultural coddling, normalizing and overlooking of black men’s inappropriate behavior has made many men and woman truly believe that their behavior is “just the way try are”. In my opinion I think many black women don’t choose better black men because they believe this behavior is normal, typical male behavior.

  • http://gravatar.com/deechagirl mypointiz…

    100% correct, Ash!

  • MySister’sKeeper

    Let’s not wax poetic on the latino community, especially not fatherhood in the latino community. Promiscuity and men maintaining multiple, secret households is also common. As a Los Angeles native, who lives and works amongst the latino community, I can tell you, their fatherless struggle is not so different then ours or the American trend towards single family homes. Why do some of us love the “others” so badly but see no good in ourselves? Why do some praise latinos who are allowed to cross our borders and do whatever? Why are people allowed to come into black communities, and take jobs for a fraction of the wages required for us to live and provide for family? Why do we let people band together with 18 people in a one bedroom apartment so cash aid can be sent to families in foreign countries? 50% of the black community is not coddled. Rather 50% is unemployed or underemployed.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @victoria

    knowledge is power. self knowledge is self love.

    read Malcolm X, dr welsing, dr fuller, ra un nefer amen.

    STOP the self hate. just STOP IT.

    learn the full extent of how the system of white supremacy works against black people.
    learn the game so you can beat the game. the system CAN BE BEAT.

  • http://melodymoose.deviantart.com/ Catpopstar

    This might be one of those things that appear to be aimed at black people, but are really aimed at white people who think black people are all like this.

  • Anon

    Do you want a cookie for “fighting in the Civil Rights movement”? Newsflash, so did my parents, grandparents, aunts & uncles. They marched organized, were first classes of desegregated schools and universities. And if any of them (male relatives) whined on the internet about what black women need to do instead of talking with black men, I’d tell them the same thing I’m telling you. Black MEN need to be talked to at this point. You got all this time to lecture black women on how they wear their hair, who they date, etc… why not go share your knowledge with MEN instead of policing black women’s behavior.

    And “hate” really? The difference is I’m not coddling you. You’re SEVENTY years old. That’s beyond grown in my book. Act it.

  • Joy

    Kudos to the President. At least he’s making (some) type of effort: And as Valerie Jared eluded to; the President realizes that change in peoples’ (habits/behavior) will not come overnight. It’s going to take time

  • Anthony

    bk chick, you just posted a masterpiece! There is nothing for me to add about your assessment of how President Obama talks about black men.

  • Anthony

    You are right, Catpopstar. Obama does not actually engage black people in conversation. He lectures black people with a long list of negative stereotypes in way that he does with no other people. The point is not that the negative observations have no merit, it is that he seems to feel that he can publicly berate black people at no politcal cost. He feels free to criticize up because he knows there is no price to pay, and he knows it really goes over well with audiences that he is forever chasing like Charley Brown forever tried to kick the football Lucy was holding only to have her snatch it away at the last moment.

  • Joy

    The: Your overall comments are uncalled for. From the President’s standpoint…D of he does, and D if he doesn’t . He’s pretty much in a no win situation. I refuse to be negative about his effort, and give him an “A” for effort

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @kaeli

    we agree.

    now, how is it that black men and women LEARN these self destructive attitudes? it is my belief that the system of white supremacy which represents the environment that we all grow up in TEACHES blacks self destructive behaviors.

    “cultural coddling, normalizing and overlooking of black men’s inappropriate behavior”

    that is what happens when black peoples culture is over ridden. no more ‘rites of passage’, no more male leadership in the community. that is what happens when the older folk are discredited and the youth are told to raise themselves.

    you get a generation that has accepted fully the capitalist, individualistic ideology that is the system of white supremacy. you get a generation raised on music videos.

    why would a brother raised to be a predatory capitalist
    care about his children? how would a girl raised by music videos know how to chose a good man? peoples minds have been poisoned.

    then obama comes along and blames the victims.

    our way out is to get the system of white supremacy OUT OF OUR HEADS. don’t hate the player, HATE THE GAME.

    bro X said, wake up, clean up and stand up.

    lets get free.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @the other jess

    yes, i agree. now think, why is that?

    why do black males behave badly?

    are we just defective or is there a force driving us to self destruction?

  • Joy

    James: Kudos for your career, and lifelong effort to help the black community. The thing is that in blogging on this thread you are preaching to the choir because (most) women on this thread appear to be upwardly progressive. Like another blogger suggested; try taking your message to a thread that’s geared toward black males. Although unfortunately the males that need to hear your message probably don’t frequent blogs. I do applaud your effort. Our black male need face to face mentoring

  • Joy

    Kacey: Ditto. Anon comes across as very disrepectful, and immature.

  • Pingback: Are We Failing Our Future Fathers? | Black and Married With Kids.com - A Positive Image of Marriage and Family

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @joy

    why do people make the assumption that because i am here i am no where else?

    i spend most of my time with males…

  • Joy

    My: “demeaning” black men.” Hold up!! I don’t think so. The President is making a point. At least he’s addressing the issue. In short: black men (and black women) are pretty much responsible for their own efforts. My bigger point: There are tons of black males that grew up, and growing up in the community (lots of them with single mothers), and they’re not out shootting, stealing, selling drugs, etc. We all make our choices in life. As for jobs; as the President outlined in his State of the Union address…he’s working on that. I think a lot of people tend to forget that a lot of these issues should be addressed by LOCAL politicians. What were locals elected for??!! Realistiically speaking the President can’t police the whole country.

  • Joy

    Sorry James…..but yeah I do think they’re a MAJOR PROBLEM in the black community among many many MAJOR PROBLEMS. There are many problems; but we can’t overlook the contributing behavior of SOME black men to the overall problem(s). i.e., not using protection so they won’t have kids that they can’t afford to take care of, not marrying women, blaming others for their problems (visa vi….stuck in the past). I could go on but I won’t. Why is it that LOTS of black men have overcome their oppression, and others haven’t? Sorry but in my book it’s called WEAKNESS. And NO I’m not saying all black men are weak. In fact I know tons of strong, educated, responsible (and I might add….married) black men

  • Kaeli

    Ok I agree with what you are saying but blaming white supremacy and stopping at that is a cop out. First and foremost one must acknowledge the bad behavior as such. People need to speak out about like Obama did.

  • B

    This is more of a general historical political statement rather than just aimed at Obama. I don’t not like politicians making moral speeches to black folks when we are looking for a policy discussion. To me it’s inappropriate and is an old political absconding tool… that WORKS.

    Reagan did it, Bush did it, Clinton did it, Bobby & Robert did it etc. Politicians pontificating on the perils of the black family does nothing in terms of policy. No politician can make a man take care of his children, but what they can do is outline policy for job creation, education reform and safer community through law enforcement by which can hold them accountable. Otherwise it’s barbershop talk. Talk about what you can do within your power of influence, instead of shit you can’t do. Talking to me about shit you can’t do anything about gets nods from the “Amen” corner and the politician gets off the hook. You get to walk out making no policy promises and the spectators leave with something they knew when they walked in the door, but they sure feel better.

  • Joy

    Mad: The President is the President of the country. Not just Chicago. At least he’s making an effort. He can’t be the end all, be all, and answer to every thing in Chicago, or the country for that matter. And yes I’ll say it….we need to pull ourselves out of our own ditches. I for one know plenty of black people that have. They didn’t, and don’t sit around waiting on someone else to do something for them

  • Tara

    So, so true.

  • Oh Well

    Just because he said it doesn’t mean his assessment true. He is not infallible no matter how some of us want to deify him.

  • Joy

    Thee: So school us. What are the REAL reason(s) for violent crime in America? I don’t know about you; but I for one realize there are many reasons. Again….what’s your take on the (reasons). And while you’re at it please give your take on why some people overcome obstacles, and some people don’t?

  • Marisa

    Bottom line is children are real human beings and not stuffed animals, however you raise them is what will be unleashed on society good and/or bad. This is personal responsibility this idea that men and women still have these crappy attitudes with bringing children into this world. I have seen people ponder more about what they will have for dinner and what outfit and hairstyle to wear to the club, and what jordans they should get, than who they have children with and rather or not to bring them into this world. Also all these multiple baby mamas and daddys needs to stop, this lack of commitment as if being with one person at a time is a death sentence, so you can hit it and quit and go to the next one. How are kids suppose to value other people lives when they have been raised not to have any value of their own lives.

  • Mademoiselle

    @victoria
    If ALL he did was address absentee fathers in other communities, as he’s done for the black community, he’d be taken to task for being a typical politician full of talk, wagging his finger, with no concrete plans to address real issues. As the black community, though, we seem satisfied with just being told we do things backwards and not demanding more than just blame every time the president visits the most war-torn area of our country.

    Speaking as a woman who has no kids and chooses to live in the suburbs to avoid dealing with issues even the government won’t touch, if I did live in the most violent community in the nation and sat in an audience listening to the POTUS tell me and my neighbors that the answer to our problems is to get the fathers of these young villains back into their homes, I’d feel fucked over (excuse the dialect) because I know for certain there’s nothing I could do to impress upon someone like Hadiya’s murderer’s father that his outlaw son needs him in his life. I’d feel hopelessness, despair, fear, bewilderment, lonely, forgotten, and inaudible after being told I have to wait until every delinquent’s father steps up before I can be made to feel safe in my neighborhood. Moreover, whether I’m a parent or not, if I were living in such an environment and asking the government to help prevent me and/or my loved ones from being gunned down, and the president basically told me the best idea he has for preventing me and my family from being shot is to motivate absentee fathers, I’d be insulted at how little value he places on my life because I have no hope that any of these thugs or their fathers will soon become the brady bunch and stop putting me at risk of death by their hands. These aren’t at risk kids acting out as a way to get attention from their parents. These are neighborhood terrorists and organized criminals, with very fluid access to weaponry and no regard for human life putting Chicago residents in their crosshairs. I would be devastated as a resident of Chicago to have the president leave his boys’ club in DC just to come tell me that the fathers that failed these kids are the solution to my fears. I’d be sick to my stomach with grief that this was the most Obama could offer to a problem I face everyday — a problem that leaves me no time to wait for Thug Sr. to school Thug Jr. on how to be a real man because Thug Jr. likely has a vendetta he’s trying to avenge as we speak that puts me at risk of death in the moment.

    But, like I said, I chose suburban life because at least I know Newtown is few and far between, and even if it were to happen in my neck of the woods, I live in a community that would evoke emotions closer to those expressed for Sandy Hook Elementary than those expressed for Chicago, so assuming I survive, I know a real solution wouldn’t take long to be put in place. Unfortunately for the black community at large (and Chicago in particular), we don’t all have the means to remove ourselves from the warzone. Let’s see what difference Obama telling father’s to be more active will have, though. I gather from a lot of the comments that many people think that’s the one message Chicago was waiting to hear to get their act together.

  • Joy

    Anthony: What??!! You are so off the mark as it relates to President Obama. On the other hand it’s amazing how we all interpret things differently. I think it boils down to our personal experiences in life

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @joy

    do you believe that ‘weak’ black men suffer from a character defect or is there an external cause?

  • Joy

    My bad James. Good for you. And haven’t you noticed that a lot of assumptions are made on this blog, and all blogs.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @joy

    FWIW : i spend most of my time with males who hate black females and call me all kinds of names for telling them to stand up and be leaders and protectors.

    - no good deed goes unpunished

  • Tara

    Sad part is that black women actually teach their daughters that you cant depend on a black man. I grew up with a father who was there for me everyday and did everything for us but the majority of the black men out in the world are not like my dad.

  • Nila

    Wow! The tragedy that befell Sandy Hook was not a color issue, it was a monumental tragedy and as the elected leader of this country, he had to address it accordingly. Black children get murdered but that doesn’t mean that he needs to turn his back on innocent lives suffer the same fate, regardless of color. Geez!

  • Kaeli

    You are the company you keep. Just sayin’

  • http://tontonmichel.tumblr.com/ Tonton Michel

    Mademoiselle

    “give those women resources to deal with the problem at hand because waiting for the men to get it together won’t solve anything in the near term”
    Resources? Like what condoms, a clue on how to not lay up with a dog? They dont need any more resources they need get a hobby that doesnt involve sex.

  • Joy

    SMH: EXACTLT what policies has he (personally) enacted that fester “Babymamahood”? If….and I say IF you are referring to foodstamps, and welfare….these are programs that have been around since before the President was born. Again what polices are you referring to?

  • http://tontonmichel.tumblr.com/ Tonton Michel

    Chillyroad,

    This true he is high heel licking with this speech but the message will be heard by men if not from him than from his female followers.

  • http://tontonmichel.tumblr.com/ Tonton Michel

    And you are a white male masquerading as a black woman on this site to derail topics and star arguements.

  • Kaeli

    @James I think at this point it is a character issue. Here is why I say that. While we don’t have control over outside forces we have control over ourselves. I understand that white supremacy might have created the problem but we can’t just sit here and use that as an excuse for the poor behavior. It’s time to say to these men ” I understand that you have been dealt a bad hand but you have to work with what you got”. Thinking like what you are expecting from black women is why so many end up having children with these loser men. They sit there saying “oh, the black man can’t catch a break in society so I don’t want to be another problem for him”. Forget that. It’s time for women to say “I love black men and understand they have been dealt a bad hand but I won’t excuse their behavior. Until they choose to behave different I can’t rock with them”. So yes it is a character issue created by an external cause.

  • http://tontonmichel.tumblr.com/ Tonton Michel

    Absolutely not there behavior is a symptom of a greater evil and they are enabled in their own community

  • Joy

    Well James that hanges the picture. You said something to the affect that “I spend most of my time with males that hate black women.” I don’t know how long you’ve been doing this with this particular group, but sounds like you need to move on to another group. I’m not saying you should give up; but Some people don’t want to be helped, and will never change. If you’ve tried a long time then why not put your effort toward black males that are really interested in changing.

  • Joy

    B sounds like you missed his bigger point. And for the record; the same could be said of the S you said. My point…..we already know what you said as well

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @joy

    i’m not tryin to preach to the choir. i’m tryin to be there to give a shove in the right direction when there is an opening.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @omfg

    “do you remember the million man march led by farrakahn? ”

    yes, i was there…

  • Micole L.

    If we do not acknowledge the issues then we can not change them.

  • Tara

    Although crimes are committed by whites with guns, It cannot compare to the crime rates in black communities. Stop acting like everything is equal. There are all white communities in America where the crime rates are really low. Little to no murder. Everywhere in America where there is a large black presence, the crime rates are the highest . I (like the woman listed above) lives in a predominantly white area and they take care of their own kind. Every home has a father in it on my street and where there is none, the father passed away. I think that there is anger among young, fatherless, black men in Chicago that you dont see with a lot of white men with fathers. The mass shooting by white kids are increasing but it cant compare to crime committed by these fatherless hoolingans in the hood.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @kaeli

    “While we don’t have control over outside forces we have control over ourselves”

    do brainwashed people have free will?

    it took me years of hard work before i gained a measure of control over my person…

  • Mademoiselle

    Resources like more dedicated law enforcement officers investigating the deaths of their children, tougher penalties for gun laws, jobs for their teenage sons and daughters to help keep them off the streets, child care programs and after school development programs for their younger children, public summer programs, a dedicated task force to locate and confiscate illegal guns floating around the deadliest neighborhoods… how about those resources for starters?

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    IMO : bk chick has knocked it out of the park!
    we can close comments and everybody can go home now.

  • B

    Joy, have a seat. I didn’t miss a damn thing.
    You simply are confused about job descriptions.
    .

    Let me help you:
    A politician, political leader, or political figure (from Classical Greek πόλις, “polis”) is a person who is involved in influencing public policy and decision making.

    Call me kooky I want policy from politicians, not family consulting. All those white kids with WHITE PARENTS shooting and killing folks and I must have missed the lecture on what’s the problem with their family unit.

    I am more invested in what happens to black people collectively, than to one individual. When all is said and done the Obama’s will be eating good and living good AFTER the white house, so excuse me while I worry about the rest us. Now, that’s some S you probably never thought about.

  • Guess

    Oops! Accidentally gave your comment a thumbs down. Very insightful, though…

  • Tara

    Wait a minute. Obamas mother MARRIED his father and his father had a PhD. She took a calculated risk. She did not expect what she got. I KNOW black women who get pregnant by someone that they KNOW dont want a kid by them. Women who KNOW that he has other kids by other women and dont take care of those kids. Women who have kids by men that they KNOW dont love them. It’s like marrying a dream guy and it turning into a nightmare. A lot of black women know that the guy was a knucklehead. A lot of African men talk a good game. But let’s keep in mind they were married and educated. She was a divorced mother not a baby mama like a lot of black women.

  • Ask_ME

    @Jamesfrmphilly

    Talk about delusional…

    The older generation is the REASON we are in this mess.

    You all weren’t trying to warn anyone. Instead you were part of the problem until you got too damn old to stand on the street corner with the Gangster Disciples, Crips, Bloods etc.

    This mess didn’t start with this current generation. No, sir…it started way back when with YOUR generation. SMH

    Don’t sit here and pretend like MY generation dropped the ball. The truth of the matter is our parents and grandparents generation really wasn’t shyt and they ALLOWED things to get to this point.

  • Mademoiselle

    @Nila,
    Don’t misconstrue what I’m saying. I’m not saying there was anything wrong with the way Obama addressed Newtown. I’m saying, knowing that he’s capable of mobilizing full-scale federal aid to fix an anomalous event in Newtown, and knowing how long Chicago has had a growing gun violence problem, it sells the black community short to allow him to come through with parenthood tips instead of palpable/tangible assistance.

    @Joy,
    I’m not expecting Obama to be the president of Chicago. I don’t expect him to be the president of Newtown, either. I expect him, as the POTUS, to hold the leaders of one of the states under his command accountable for repairing their damaged community. I expect the POTUS to set concrete expectations of all the officials that report to him of what’s acceptable (addressing violence in their areas without delay) and what’s unacceptable (allowing terror to reign, death counts to rise, and certain swaths of their constituencies to live in fear while thumbs are twiddled and cans are kicked down the road). And, I expect him to support (financially, politically, or otherwise) the leaders of these states in their efforts uniformly.

  • Ask_ME

    @YB

    Yes, it occurred to those of us with good sense who are REALLY looking at the situation based on facts rather than emotions. This is why I always ignore the “black women need to pick better comments.” They completely ignore the quality of the women that are sleeping with Pookie.

  • Kay

    Yes!! I’ve often thought that our President has so neatly side stepped the elephant in the room. And the funny thing is, poverty is a nationwide issue. So it baffles me as to why he isn’t addressing this, especially as there is a growing number of poor Whites and as the economy grows weaker, the numbers in every community, especially those of color will continue to climb. We’re living in an age where the life chances of children is LESS than those of the prior generations. That has never, ever happened in the history of our society, but he wants to appeal to all those in power who want to wipe their hands of fiscal responsibility and say, “It’s those Black people who are a problem!” (even though we are only 10-12% of the population) rather than taking those very people in power to task.

    If you are a student of Black studies than you know this isn’t a new discussion. The “Talented Tenth,” have been preaching about laziness and morality since forever, hoping that by us playing into the respectability politics we’ll be treated equally by the racists who hate us. Hell, even DuBois got in on it, and this was during a time when Black marriage rates were supposedly HIGHER. Problem is, racists don’t CARE. They will hate us just the same. We’ve got to attack this problem for the good of our community and not to appeal to small minded bigots.

  • Guess

    It still falls back on the men because women with healthy father figures & subsequently healty emotional relationships with men during their formative years generally hold themselves to higher esteem/standards & are able to better distinguish lust from love… They’re better equipped to ascertain when & how to parent & with whom. “If” men (along with their partners) are to be our protectors, they have failed miserably (due to many factors) & need to attach themselves by any means necessary to solutions for our community’s ills. However, I believe Obama is way out of line in addressing this in the manner he chose before a worldwide audience. He needs to facilitate programming which would allow more intimate and linear dialogue & internal solutions to such complex issues.

  • simplyme

    Obama is absolutely right. However if we’re ever going to do anything about such a cyclical, systematic, and now ingrained cultural issue we’re going to need a lot more than rhetoric and admonition. The solutions need to be innovative, far reaching, and source based.

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    *blush* Thanks James! This is something I feel passionately about because Obama is not being vetted enough by the community who supported him 100% I wish sometimes people would see the forest through the trees, and not let the fact that they agree with the fundamentals of Obama’s speech cloud their ability to criticize him. You can support the message and still criticize him for constantly throwing us under the bus. The two are not mutually exclusive.

  • PBR

    James, knowyourhistory and all the other men who have been posting about white supremacy. You may be right about the white man keeping you down, but to this date your approach to dealing with that white supremacy has FAILED. You have been FAILING the black community. Maybe you should be more open to listening to what barack obama and other successful married black men have to say about fatherhood, making money, loving women and building up the community.

  • Lisa

    If we continue to blame white supremacy for all our problems, we’ll remain eternal victims & 50 years from now, we’ll still be steeped in the same problems & lamenting over how the white man is to blame for all our woes. It’s time that we focused on what parts of our problems we bring upon ourselves and how to fix that. Sure, white supremacy has wreaked a lot of havoc upon us. Sure, white businessmen are making guns easily accessible to youth in our communities. But these white businessmen are not standing next to the perpetrators of gun violence & telling them to pull the trigger & kill their own brothers & sisters. And these white businessmen are not going around telling black men to abandon their sons so that the boys grow up feeling that they need to join a gang to belong. Lets own up to our failings as a people so that we can move forward.

  • MySister’sKeeper

    The president is beating the same old drum and at this point it seems like it is to appease the white community, not effect change in the black community. You are absolutely right that there are TONS of black males who grew up with single mothers and don’t end up shooting, stealing, etc. But why doesn’t the president address that when speaking to our community? Why does he act like fatherlessness is the start and end to the problem? Unfortunately single parent homes is the growing American trend, and no longer just for black families. And it is certainly not the CAUSE for the outrageous violence. If the president can’t and wont police the entire country, or can’t and wont address the lack of jobs in the black community at least he can stop talking down to us with empty rhetoric.

  • Gigi

    I think that if our communities are weak it is because we are all (women and men) being irresponsible when it comes to our children. As mothers, we have to step up just like our men and stop being a disappointment to our kids. This issue is about raising productive and respectable children, not the bruised egos of grown men and women.

  • Joy

    SM: You are full of hot air. Didn’t even answer my question. No need to respond further

  • Joy

    B: And your ranting solves what??

  • Mademoiselle

    @Lisa
    White supremacy was nowhere in my argument and I’m not sure how you came to the conclusion that I placed blame there.

  • http://gravatar.com/pinklipstick227 pinklipstick227

    “Perhaps more black folks should forego spouses and children if they can’t have one or don’t want one.”

    Let the people say Amen!

  • apple

    whoa 295 comments

  • The Moon in the Sky

    ‘Pampers’ IS the name of the brand, people.

    http://www.pampers.com/home

  • Echi

    I know, right.

  • B

    @ joy-less noise
    Me ranting?
    Run back through this thread and see who is running around like chicken with her head cut off trying debate others on their views on THEIR president?
    Hint: Cluck Cluck it’s you….
    You are sho working hard for president’s day

  • Whitney’s Receipts

    preach!

  • Whitney’s Receipts

    Sky is blue, Obama talks down to black people, water is wet…….

  • Over It All.

    This article is so biased I don’t know where to start. Pull bits and pieces of 2 speeches and call Obama irresponsible? No, this article is irresponsible. Why not find solutions instead of critique speeches. Go write to a mayors and governors, community organizations. Don’t just sit behind your computer and critique a speech. Gahdamn.

  • The Moon in the Sky

    Look at me, everyone! I’m a Black man and I can’t do anything for myself. I need to be treated like a child. My life isn’t my responsibility. Black women are responsible for me.

  • Ask_ME

    The only thing I got from your rant is this:

    Black women don’t procreate/date or even think about marrying a black man….unless you want to RAISE him along with your children.

    *Rolls eyes*

    Black women aren’t the people doing the hiring in this country. Therefore, we can no more help you get a job than we can ourselves. Next…

    A trip to your nearest public library will provide you all the tools you need to create a resume. Depending on someone else to show you how to create this basic necessity for success is lazy and downright off putting. Next…

    I cannot speak for anyone but myself, but I personally don’t want nor desire any man that needs to lead by the hand. What you consider “support” borders on a child/parent relationship. A grown arse man is supposed to know how build, network, provide and do for self.

  • PBR

    I DO! Black men are the problem because they are supposed to be the leaders, but instead too many act like children. They shoot each other up which puts women and children at risk. That’s the worst it can get. When is the last time you heard of a black woman shooting up a community park?

  • evan

    Blaming all the problems in the black community on brothers satisfies racist whites and those black women who hate black men. The president doesn’t risk anything there. Now holding certain black women accountable for their mating decisions? He will NEVER do that!

  • PBR

    PLEASE STOP MAKING EXCUSES FOR GROWN BLACK MEN.

    Ask any learned or enlightened person they will tell you that each person is in control of his or her own destiny. Somehow plenty of black women are able to accept this and eventually become productive citizens but many black men still make excuses and blame it on someone else. STOP CODDLING THEM, AT ADULTHOOD THEY ARE IN CHARGE OF THEIR DESTINY. THEM ALONE

  • PBR

    Overall I say GOOD. I am so glad that our black president is going at black fathers again in his last term. People cry about what is Obama doing for the black community… well this is the best that he could possibly do for the black community – getting at the black fathers who are failing their children. How else are you going to get Raheem or Tyrone to stop shooting up their neighborhoods, selling drugs and joining gangs? Outlaw guns (already done in Chi-town)? Tell them it’s bad or try to educate them at the age of 15? They’ll laugh. The only way to get black boys to stop terrorizing the hood is to get responsible BLACK men more involved. Anything else you propose is BS, don’t try to sell me your excuses because I’m not buying! Thank you Pres!

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    “Black women are responsible for me”

    all black men are born by black women….

  • LemonNLime

    You know this is a very good point that I have never thought about before but you are right. That is exactly why I don’t pay attention to politicians when they speak to black audiences.

    I wonder how much of that is cultural? Think about it, many blacks communities are well connected to the black churches, where they lecture and preach at you in this style. I wonder how much of it is imitating that which they see to be a rather universal method to deliver a message to a certain audience.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    Anon, if you’re the same person, you are killing them with truth in this thread!

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    It’s always the white man’s fault. Always.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    And this, ladies and gentlemen, is why the black community isn’t shit in this country. Always pointing the finger and never wanting to take responsibility.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    Hit dogs hollering all over this thread. I hope POTUS continues to hurt some feelings over this issue.

  • victoria

    alldawg
    There’s no denying that we (both black men and women) have to do better to build and maintain our families and our communities. However, having to hold a grown man’s hand – help him get a job, construct his resume, help him network, help him get a place, give/lend him money, feed him, etc… These are the steps parents do not the steps a grown woman wants to take to build a life with her mate. There’s one thing to ask someone, ”Help me UPDATE/ reconstruct my resume.” But there’s another thing to expect or wish for your partner to teach you how to maneuver through life. Not knowing life’s basics will actually turn women off. And I can assure you that many men will be turned off from women who are incapable of obtaining and maintaining a job and a home.

    Expecting your partner to be able to stand on their own is not a bad thing. Black women shouldnt be ashamed because we want men to hold their own, be strong, and provide for their family. As with my husband, he wouldn’t have given me a second thought if I was incapable of earning a living and maintaining a home.

    Regarding be supportive; yes, I agree. But again, let’s not confuse being supportive with teaching a man life skills. Only young men (teenage years or early 20s) or men who have been in prison can be excused from not knowing the basics. And these men have to get their lives together before starting a family.

  • Aluv

    White supremacy in black face !

  • Chillyroad

    Moon

    I agree. As a man he should know that men are the only ones subjected to Darwins survival if the fittest. Unlike women he can’t get a helping hand unless he goes to prison or the military. As a man he can’t shout about being independent with government cheese on his breathe. The social safety net only exist for those with with a uterus. Everyone else has to swim or die.

  • Wanda

    I don’t see anything wrong with what the president said AT ALL. All he did was talk about the importance of fathers to our children and to our people.

    Funny thing is: how many so-called “black leaders” have we heard over the years say how important good parenting is to the lives of children? NONE.

    And yes, I would like to hear the First Lady talk about responsibility and motherhood to our girls and young women. Being a baby mama is nothing to aspire to.

  • Shepherd

    Thank you, you hit the nail on the head just when I was losing all faith with the comments section. Berating people isn’t going to solve a damn thing. How about dealing with the root of the problem?

  • Wanda

    Frankly, I think it would be very positive is the president and First Lady discussed both fathers and mothers being responsible in their behavior.

    The First Lady has a wonderful story to tell, too.

    She could talk about how being a baby mama is nothing to aspire to.

    I think that having the both of them talk about the importance of marriage and providing STABLE homes for all of our children, as they have, is a very good thing.

  • Anthony

    Joy, my criticism of Obama is not that he has made negative assessments of black men or the black community in general, it is that he comes off like a grown man talking to children, not as a politician speaking to a constituency that has been fundamental to his political success.
    His tone generates a lot of amens, but it is not a substitute for real policy that can improve black lives. The only issue that Obama has consistently been strong on is voting rights, something that clearly benefitted him directly. I cannot think of any time he has meaningfully used political capital for black people beyond statements he made about Henry Louis Gates and Trayvon Martin.

    That said, I supported him because he is much, much better than the alternatives. Maybe Obama’s timidity
    will set the stage another president to be truly progressive.

  • http://www.clutchmagonline.com jenn dunn

    black people get so mad when they hear the truth about themselves.

  • Cocochanel31

    Forget the President, where is Louis Farrakhan?? Let’s get some grass roots men, boots on the ground, kind of action going on. We must do better with getting our youth before the gang culture takes over. The father’s are not there, we know that, NOW WHAT???

  • Tara

    The problem is that wealthy black men dont uplift other black men. With all of this sports money, entertainment money,etc black men could collectively build corporations and hire black men. So yeah a lot of black women choose the wrong men and a lot of black men are knuckleheads but even wealthy black men dont overly concern themselves with uplifting other black men. Thing is it would not cost most of these wealthy black men to start corporations in all the major cities. Black men dont help each other so the more helpless black men have to go to white men for help. Black men just arent the go back and uplift everybody else type like Jewish or Middle Eastern men. They are different.

  • Hmmmm

    white noise. nothing here.

  • http://gravatar.com/missinformation7 Ms. Information

    Our generation is missing personal f*****g responsibility…..women cocking legs open to men who were bad boyfriends and men leaving children who had nothing to do with the crappy relationship with the mother…this single mother epidemic is not working for us…

  • Tara

    It wouldnt make sense to say ok black women you made bad decisions tht is why the race is messed up. Look at Barack Obama’s mom. She married an African PHD. That wasnt a bad choice, Im sure he looked great on paper. A lot of biracial kids have black fathers that arent around and I am sure that a lot of these white women thought that they would be taken care of by black men cause they are white and that isnt always the case. Sometines women make bad choices buy sometimes the men are just broken. What about that football player who left his classy asian wife while pregnant for that white girl. Im sure that she did not expect that. A lot of black men are broken regardless of how good they look on paper.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    there is a lot of black self hate up in here. sad….

  • http://twitter.com/Cognorati001 Colette Marcheline (@Cognorati001)

    Interesting.

    I wonder if there could be Saturday schools and cultural groups like the ones Jews and Northeast Asians create in their own communities (they make their kids attend either religious or cram/cultural schools on Saturdays) ? Why don’t Black Americans use their Churches to start that kind of movement (I’m Catholic, so I don’t know what the dynamics are of Black Churches)?

    In contrast, West Indians and West Africans tend to help one another. I’ve participated with other Black immigrants in creating our own lending pools. It’s interesting that when we’ve asked Black Americans if they wanted to join they cited their distrust, but we’ve never had any problem with any dishonesty in years of doing this. We also tend to finance one another’s schooling, businesses, and pathways to citizenship for extended family, not to mention sending billions to our countries of origin.

  • http://gravatar.com/rastaman1967 rastaman

    The people in the hood know who the criminals are, they know who is doing the shootings, the stealing and all other mis-deeds and most people who have lived around that ish know this. Many of the people you see on the news bemoaning the latest victims are very often the mothers, sisters, brothers and friends of the perpetrators. I am not going to put myself in the position of defending foolishness and too often that is what occurs when we attempt to explain why absent fathers cannot be called to the carpet for their neglect. Anyone who believes the lack of black fathers in the home is not negatively impacting the black community is fooling themselves. You need fathers to raise men and you need fathers to reaffirm to young women that they can be loved by a man for more than how they look and what sexual favors they can provide.

    Is it more difficult for black parents to maintain a household?
    Yes. Everything progressive thing black people do in America will be more difficult than it is for the larger society. But it was more difficult 30 years ago and even more difficult a 100 years ago. If a man cannot be a father to his own kids, who is he?

    Finances are important in properly raising children but even more than finances it is about being a constant in that child’s life. When a man exits his child’s life because of his finances, he is taking the easy way out, he is a coward. Because even tougher than buying things for your children is showing them love, protecting them and guiding them. Any man who has been around young children who do not have a constant male presence in their life can see that excitement in their eyes when they get some male attention, they are practically yearning.

    I don’t know about anyone else but I get tired when people discuss the neglect of our children as some philosophical or sociological debate. In the time spent trying to prove who has the better argument another young child is being loss to neglect.

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    @ Rastaman…..”The people in the hood know who the criminals are, they know who is doing the shootings, the stealing and all other mis-deeds and most people who have lived around that ish know this”

    This is exactly why the rhetoric meant to “enlighten” people about themselves and the amoral choices they’re making is a moot point. These people already know and are STILL continuing to make choices. The role of a politician is not to preach but to create policy that will manipulate behavior, or at least try to, for the outcome of a public good. There’s nothing wrong with being like hey, here’s the problem, but the politician needs to follow up with “and here’s how We’re gonna try and tackle it with policy A, B, and C,” not “and you need to worry about fixing it cuz it’s not my job to help you” while said politician has no problem addressing the needs of other communities. It’s bullshit at this point to have empty words without publicly stating the policies or privately going after the community problems with some creative and innovative policies, i.e. the “Dream Act.”

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    once they convince us to hate our own and to believe that we are not as good as others…they can sit back and watch us self destruct

  • Tara

    Oh, I forgot. They do lift up one group when they are rich even over their own black brothers. They uplift non-black women. It aint rocket science. We act like it is this big complex problem but most of the problems of the black community can be resolved by us. The problem is that we dont like each other. We have the resources to fix ourselves but we are too far gone.

  • Tara

    It is not so cut and dry with even Non- american blacks. There is extreme poverty in africa. They let white men come in and drain their natural resources. Jamaica Kingston has some poverty and lots of violence. England as well. Non-American blacks arent perfect.

  • Tara

    If a man cannot be a father to his own kids, who is he?

    If your own father does not have your back, who will? That is why it is so easy for these damaged men to disrespect black women, they never saw loyalty between a black man and woman. A black man protecting a black family.

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    @ Tara. Ok you’ve stated the problem. Now what is your solution? Or how do you thing some of these problems can be solved?

  • http://gravatar.com/loverloverlovertalia kiki

    Standing ovation. I’d venture to say that irresponsible parenting is the LEADING cause of our problems in the community today. We have worked hard to legally lessen the effects of institutional racism but now our attention MUST turn inward. Babies you aren’t prepared for will practically guarantee struggle and hardship.

  • http://twitter.com/Cognorati001 Colette Marcheline (@Cognorati001)

    Uh, wasn’t talking about those living abroad but in the US…

  • http://gravatar.com/loverloverlovertalia kiki

    Wrong. Self love = self preservation. What we are doing now obviously AINT WORKING and is leading to our death as a community. Looking for all the answers in the system will not cut it.

  • Come On

    I agree that women should be called out for making poor decisions, but let’s be real. Being in a relationship with a man, shacking up with him, dating him for years and years, listening to his sweet nothings provide no guarantee that a man will take care of their children. The men who like to comment on this site pretend as if the majority of baby mamas ran out to the local club for a one night stand with a drug dealer and wound up pregnant. No they are getting pregnant by their boyfriends. Men who say they care. Men who say I love you. I want to be with you forever and yada yada yada. Many black people especially in the inner city don’t get married. This is what happens when you replace marriage and husbands with shacking up and boyfriends. Boyfriends walk out, and many don’t stay in touch. There are plenty of non-drug dealers, non-thug baby daddies.

    The biggest guarantee that is definitely not 100% of a man’s commitment is marriage, and people find this to be so old fashioned. Many of these women do not see marriage anywhere in their future. Shacking up with a man and having his kids seems to be the norm in many black neighborhoods.

    Also in some neighborhoods, the women are just as bad as the men they are complaining about. However, a mother no matter the bad choices she mad is there. This is the problem. Many Americans think that problems could be solved if black people would as someone mentioned pull the cart with two carts instead of one. After a life is created and the child exists in this world, more problems would be solved if the man would help pull the cart as well instead of saying “Oh woman you’re pulling the cart alone. You should have planned better to have someone pull the cart with you.” The damage has been done, and people think BOTH parties should be held responsible for the life they created. Mothers whether they are good or bad are at least there. To many people, it appears that she is taking on her responsibility after making an irresponsible choice. And when women do the bare minimum, they are seen as neglectful. They ARE looked down on. I just think many people see absent fathers in a harsher light than irresponsible mothers. I do as well. Some women who were irresponsible get it together. A child can do that for a woman sometimes. The biggest thing is that absent fathers are just not there! It seems like a shirking of responsibility whereas the mothers are there. It seems like they are doing what they are supposed to do. Most people just can’t make excuses for a grown man who has a child right down the street never getting his act together. And there are too many men like this. And they’re not all just drug dealers. And besides in some of these neighborhoods. These are the men that these women have to deal with. Even the non-thugs aren’t marrying anyone at any great rate. Years and years of not growing up and taking responsibility is low down and can’t be excused.

    And for this to be so prevalent in these inner city neighborhoods, it can’t just be blamed on 80% of the women picking the bad 20% of the men. If a middle class black woman who is surrounded by loads of men who have morals and values were to ignore all these men and only date the bad ones, I could completely agree that she is the majority of the problem. But I don’t see this happening as much with black women who grew up with decent men. They usually date guys who they went to school with. They’re not going to the hood to find a man contrary to what the men on YouTube like to say.

  • n

    I live in Harlem and every day I see young black women chasing behind some criminal minded hoodlum with his pants hanging near his knees. Are these women not to be held accountable for their choices? Who do you think is buying all these “thug love” urban romance novels? When can we stop pretending that young black women play no role in the demise of the black community?

  • http://gravatar.com/missinformation7 Ms. Information

    We are better so we need to do better and make better decisions….

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    Serious question….So, according to what you stated, your solution is that these men should just choose to do with right thing. Do you think this will happen by itself? I’m not even trying to be sarcastic. I guess my logic is, if these men aren’t doing it NOW, then clearly they’ve made a choice. There needs to be a catalyst for people to change their behavior, it is unusual for a group of people, en masse, to change their morals for no particular reason. Obviously, if they keep doing what they are doing, it’s because they enjoy the incentives that come along with being irresponsible. I think they goal is pinpointing the incentives that are promoting irresponsibility in order to manipulate them. OR creating new incentives that either punish bad behavior or reward good behavior. Are you suggesting that by telling them what they need to do is enough of a catalyst to change their behavior?

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    wow, this comment was in reply to Victoria…don’t know how it ended up here.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    You obviously didn’t listen to his speech at all. Do yourself a favor and actually read it. There’s a ton of policy in there. You’re just obsessed with being offended that the President, unlike the majority of the black community, refuses to coddle and baby grown ass black men.

    Read the speech. Because you are making a fool of yourself acting like all the President did was say be a father to your child. Those of us who watched the speech know good and well that you have no idea what you’re talking about.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    THIS!

  • Wanda

    I agree too.

    Except I think that the younger generations were conditioned to promote single motherhood and baby mama-ism as a healthy and suitable alternative to the marriage-based families we USED to have, when they are not.

    If over 70 percent of our children are born to us when we are single, how are being “abandoned” b y anybody anyhow? I never get this point.

    How do we compare a wife who is left by a husband, with single women who are choosing (and that’s what it is…) to bring a life into the world, on their very own?

    I could not have imagined making the choice – as WE do the vast majority of the times we bring a child into the world – to do it by myself. Black in America? Puh-lease…

  • au napptural

    Ok, the other day people were going in on Obama for not addressing gun violence in Chicago, and, as I predicted, when he did address it all they did was b!tch and moan. What many black people want is for Obama to act like these problems came down from the sky and pour endless sympathy into their wounds. They just want attention. But Obama came with what’s real. He wasn’t trying to embarass anybody or point fingers. He didn’t do it in the State of the Union or any other major speech time. He spoke to US about US. But that’s the problem. The black community doesn’t want to be told all the problems aren’t someone else’s fault. Now I agree it is a songlomeration of things: Post-traumatic slave syndrome, the after effects of resegregation, institutional racism, etc. But I have to quote Alice Childress here: “if somebody is beating you and choking you so you can’t even breathe your breath, you think they gonna let up because you crying about the stomping they putting on you? HELL NO!”

    So we have problems. Be real about it. Obama said what he said in Chicago b/c it’s the TRUTH. There was one mass shooter in Conn. and Aurora. There are hundreds of shooters in Chicago. They don’t warrant the same speech. It is a breakdown of community in Chicago. It’s not a lone gunman, who may or may not be crazy, it’s an entire generation hellbent on destruction. So let’s stop the nonsense. We now good and well all of this is traceable to the breakdown fo the family. The facts of bad schools and gentrification have nothing to do with it. If a child can’t read that does not mean he is automatically going to run the streets dealing dope and shooting people. This means his parents aren’t doing their job. Until I was 18 and left my parents’ house for school, there was no walking out the door without their say-so. And I didn’t just say “I’m going out with friends”. I went to activities like track, Jack and Jill meetings, church. If I was going to a friend’s party, my parents drove me, went inside and looked around, and then picked me up at a pre-determined time. They troubled themselves to raise me. Not just to have me and feed me. To RAISE me. That means to know every aspect of my life, to know my friends, to investigate my hobbies, to be there for my after-school events, to show some damn interest in their child.

    We have fingers to point at the police, at Obama, at the schools, at DCF, at the whole world. Some people just want to be perpetual martyrs. But really when are we, as a community, going to grown up? When are we going to say, “those are some hard truths, but the truth is the light.” We have to stop it with these Arab slave trader arguments. You know, the whie people always say they weren’t the only enslavers, Arabs traded slaves too, and African people sold their own. What does that have to do with anything?! Yea, some whites shot up their people- but last I checked we are the only ones losing thousands from gun warfare in our neighborhoods. Would you rather whine that Obama didn’t couch that truth in the most palatable terms or actually do something about it. I mean really.

  • Wanda

    Oops. This was supposed to be a reply to lexdiamonz point from above. Sorry.

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    @ Kelly…if you read my original post..my main contention was not whether or not Obama was telling the truth about fatherhood in the black community. I agree with him, so I’m not sure where u gauged that I’m “obsessed” with the president offending and coddling black men. On an emotional level, I hate the dysfunction that some black men perpetuate and that’s why I am passionate about not only holding the communities accountable, but making sure law makers, who are supposed to help us out, are doing their part as well. In watching the speech, I do agree that the President had outlined some policies to address this issue, so on that I stand corrected. However, it still bothers me on a symbolic level that black people aren’t explicitly named in the rhetorical conversation on the national stage when addressing national issues. There is a lot of pandering to Hispanics (si se puede!) but a void of pandering to black people who voted for him nearly 100%…I don’t want to get into a conversation over why that may be, because it’s complicated but I think we are just as important symbolically as we are practically, and I think Obama hasn’t done enough to promote that message.

    I would like to do some research on my own to see how effective the policies Obama mentioned are, because from the outside looking in, things haven’t really seemed to change, so that’s why I advocate for more of a creative approach in dealing with dysfunctional communities…off to Google :)

  • http://gravatar.com/actproductions I cant

    Reading some of these comments, it is clear to me that some black folks are in denial.

    Here’s the reality: Go to the local prison and round up all of the black inmates – I guarantee that the overwhelming majority of them grew up without fathers/with fathers who were barely active.

    We can blame slavery. We can blame black women. We can blame poverty. We can blame the government. But, the reality is that black men are broken. And at this point, arguing about who is to blame is futile.

    We could have all of the gun laws in the world. We could enact every single policy within the scope of the government’s power, and it won’t change a thing until black men decide that their manhood is not tied to how many women they impregnate or have sex with or how many times they have had run ins with the police.

    We have to redefine manhood in the black community. And yes, women are to blame, but a large part of the issues that women have in terms of being responsible sexually stems from…..drum roll please….having poor/nonexistent relationships with their fathers and/or men who have poor/nonexistent relationships with their fathers.

    Chicago already has one of the strictest gun laws in the country. There are millions of dollars that are being poured into inner city schools. There are several government programs that are designed to help the black community. I don’t really know what you all expect Obama to do other than point out the obvious.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    You better stop making sense up in here.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    bk chick,

    So just as I thought, you didn’t watch the speech. SMH.

    And just as I thought, this is all about optics for you. “Waaaah, he’s pandering to the Latinos!! What’s he gonna do for blacks?!! Waaaahhh”

    President Obama’s policies overwhelmingly favor the black community. It’s part of the reason why Republican obstruction has been like nothing we’ve ever seen in this country. Who do you think benefited most from healthcare reform? And the stimulus? And the Lily Ledbetter Act? These are some of the first things he did. And they disproportionately help people of color and black women. So get off that “he hasn’t done anything for us” bullshit.

    As for the problems that specifically effect that black community, like the gang violence plaguing the inner cities, there isn’t a damn thing he can do to make it stop. He can take away all the guns tomorrow, and they’d start killing each other with baseball bats instead. Latinos are asking for immigration reform. Gays were asking for equal right. And what do black folk want? A fucking behavior modification program. For the President to come in and raise their families?

    Your comparing the black community to the Latino community is straight ignorant. There are latino immigrant communities in this country that are just as poor or poorer than black inner cities. And yet you don’t see these sky high crime rates in their communities. Now why is that?

    Black people need to fucking grow up, stop looking to government to raise their children, and stop making excuses.

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    That’s the point I’m making. Clearly the policies that I’m speaking of need to be aimed at behavior modification. The crux of your argument is that personal responsibility is the only cure for what is ailing the black community..obviously the community hasn’t woken up one day and said “you know what, this is wrong. let’s change” The “let’s change” mantra has been spoken to death. Clearly, as it stands, people don’t WANT to change. Obama in his speech talked about “creating ladders of opportunity for people who want to climb” Therein lies the problem. People are not wanting to climb by themselves. If the goal is to really use the government’s power to help the black community, and the fundamental issue is not opportunity but behavioral, then those policies need to focus on behavior modification.

    My comparison of the Black Community to other populations was in the realm of symbolism. Just because black people’s needs are different are based on behavior modification doesn’t mean it’s not worthy to address and pander to on a national stage because we did vote for him. It sends a message to us and the rest of the country that our unique needs are just as important as everyone else’s. Image is important as well, hence the reason why ppl protest against reality shows etc. We need to attack our problems from all angles. Not to mention the immigration reform issue is not exclusive to Hispanics, because being someone who comes from a whole family of immigrants, I know that historically Haitian Immigrants are not treated the same as their hispanic counterparts.

    Recently, Rahm Emmanuel came up with the idea to give 25 gift cards to increase parent participation in schools. It may suck that parents need to coaxed in this manner, but if it needs to get it needs to get done for the sake of the kids. Although its not a perfect plan by any means, this is based on psychological studies that show that an incentive, one that is not too high, nor too low can actually modify people’s attitudes to the extent that eventually parents will begin to believe that they are actually attending their child’s school meetings because it’s important and not because of the reward. It’s policies like this, similar to smoking and obesity that are necessary to target the behavioral problems in the black community and not just enhancing opportunity. Politicians are there for the policy reasons. The other emotional issues can be addressed by the community at large who are cognizant of the problems.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    anytime black people are going after one another while giving the system of white supremacy a pass…..we are in deep do do

  • http://trueletterson.wordpress.com trueletterson

    Bravo for the first time in a long time I agree with President Obama he is telling the truth the absent of two parent household in the black community is at the root of most of our problems in the black community, you can say white men leave their children also but look at the percentage and you will find it’s no ways near the rate black men leave their children. I thank my wife for allowing me the oppotunity to be the husband and father I am to her and our children because I have seen so many good hard working black men fathers ran off, didn’t have a chance to be a good father and husband ran off [destroyed the family] by a good black women who was foolishly hell bent on proving the white radical social engineers of the sixties fail social experiment know as feminism!

  • KnowYourHistory

    Bravo. Keep on telling it; please don’t worry about the Clutchettes (sooo 1950′s doo-wop ), ( and “Clutch-dudes ) that may get offended by your pesky, inconvenient, truths.

  • KnowYourHistory

    Black women, prime consumers of salacious TV fare, love them some white people-TV images; and won’t let that dysfunction go, without a HUGE fight. *sigh*

  • KnowYourHistory

    In the vernacular, bro? You ain’t never lied, James. Too many BW are seduced by the media-fueled appearance of white omnipotence and “goodness”

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    So you want the United States Government to create a bill that sponsors some kind of behavior modification program for black folk, to teach them how to finish high school, not make babies out of wedlock, why you should look for a job and how to keep it, why you should save money for the future instead of spending it all on nonsense, etc.

    First off, that’s just pathetic and black people should be embarrassed that the government has to put in place a bill to teach us how to behave like responsible human beings. Secondly, a bill like that would never pass Congress. I sure as hell don’t want my tax dollars going towards some bullshit like that.

    And finally, there’s no support for a bill like that. People of color come from all over the world to this country with a dollar and a dream, And they manage to do well for themselves. Look at the African and West Indian immigrants and what they’ve done in the last 30 years. Look at the South East Asian immigrants and what they’ve been able to accomplish. People are sick and tired of the excuses from this part of the black community. The excuses need to stop. Others are coming here with nothing and outpacing African Americans within a single generation in America. It’s ridiculous. I just read an article a couple of weeks ago about how the majority of blacks entering the Ivy Leagues are the children of immigrants.

    The excuses need to stop. And folks needs to change their behavior ON THEIR OWN. And if they can’t? Well, that’s called survival of the fittest. If you want to continue to create a community of losers because you don’t want to even do the most basic and most simple things that are required to live a decent life, then you’re just gonna get left behind.

    It is NOT the government’s job to help people who DON’T want to help themselves. It is not the government’s job to provide babysitters to walk black folk through their day and insure that they’ll make it.

    That is NOT the President’s job and it never has been.

  • KnowYourHistory

    Our POTUS is a dissembler that is TOO COWARDLY to pull back the curtain and indict the real purveyors of disadvantage and mayhem in the US’ urban communities. A well-spoken, educated, coward, that has managed to seduce a nation of Black women. Coward. If Obama weren’t such a meek, good-looking, duplicitous, coward, y’all KNOW he wouldn’t have gotten within a watermelon seed-spit of Washington.

  • KnowYourHistory

    I’d dare say the “Lord Jesus, Black women-church-model” has KEPT US DOWN. Whattaya say about THAT ?.

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    I would know because I am a Haitian American. My family has an advantage because we haven’t been victims of white supremacy in America through generations. Also, in considering immigrant populations, especially the ones who have come here legally, there is an overrepresentation of people who have more resources and would have been fine otherwise had their countries not been in turmoil. A lot of middle class folk, like my family. It’s also easier to be cohesive because I know directly where my family comes from and have strong cultural ties to my community and don’t really have to contend with generations of my family being treated like outsiders in their own country. Also, it’s easier to maintain a strong community when u are a small group of people living in a place that’s not your country of origin, much like going away to college and finding a connection with people who were originally form your own town.

    It is pathetic that that the BC, and I’m not excluding immigrant populations either because this stuff goes own in our communities too, need behavior modification. But it is a necessary evil, why? because, and for African Americans in particular, generations of white supremacy and discrimination have allowed the community to be in the state that it is. It has been a psychological victory because even the people who are suffering do not want to or have no motivation to lift themselves up by the bootstraps. And to put them in that position and leave them hanging, when this country had no problem using them for slave labor and holding back their education or any gains they would’ve made, is doing them a disservice. This is the legacy of white supremacy and the gov’t has to pay the price if it wants to truly create a better environment for the BC to thrive. No other group has to contend with what African Americans had to contend with in this country. And, I mentioned the program that Rahm Emmanuel came up with, the gift cards, this is behavior modification that is not extreme but can potentially be very effective and trickle down over time to create some much needed attitude adjustment. That is the primary way to tackle the problems in the Black Community because I truly believe opportunity isn’t the prime issue, it’s changing the attitudes. Pathetic or not, it’s necessary .

  • vonmiwi

    The truth hurts and the majority of our people don’t want hear it, let alone do anything to solve our problems because it requires work, hard work.

  • KnowYourHistory

    THANK YOU, Aluv !

    That’s EXACTLY IT.

    And all the Jesus and Walt Disney-TV lovin’ Black women, as almost per usual, FALL FOR THE OKIE-DOKE.

    So busy reading trash trilogies, ignoring, ( at our communities’ continued peril ), our horrid history of mistreatment and wealth denial in these here United States, inhaling this apartheid TV, and desperately trying to forge sisterhoods with white women ( fiddling, while Rome burns ), they’re sooo busy being “too fierce” to notice.

    That ain’t progress. We definitely need to trash the old “Lord Jesus, savior” model. ( Yeah, I said it ); It ain’t working. Wish our Black women weren’t so easy to seduce, so easy to get them to take and keep their eyes off of the ball.

    Sometimes it seems like all it takes is a new, bright, and shiny object in order to distract them. Alas.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    @trueletterson

    so you feel that white people are just better than we are?

  • KnowYourHistory

    Pul-eeze.

    Folk have been “telling” us about the problems in our community FOR DECADES. Are you KIDDING ME ?

    How many times are we to “acknowledge” these matters of which EVERYONE is well aware ? !

    P ease. You sound kinda new to the rodeo.

  • KnowYourHistory

    That wasn’t a “rant”.

    Next.

  • vonmiwi

    They would rather make excuses than rectify the problems at hand. It’s much easier to stay in a perpetual state of denial and victimhood. We can’t correct what we do not acknowledge.

  • KnowYourHistory

    News Flash: This just in:

    Obama is NOT a black male. If he were, he would NOT be POTUS. Looks are deceiving. He has the skin tone and a few of our mannerisms and saying down pat. He’s also chopped himself down a Black woman. That don’t make him a “Black male”, no more than Colin “Bloody Iraq Babies” Powell.

    Boom.

  • KnowYourHistory

    E-x-x-x-x-x- ACTLY ! !

  • Tara

    Recently, Rahm Emmanuel came up with the idea to give 25 gift cards to increase parent participation in schools.

    Pitiful :(

  • Whitney’s Receipts

    Right, everything falls on black women. Everything is black women’s fault. Black men have no responsibility.

    Pathetic.

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    It is NOT the government’s job to raise anyone’s children. And it’s not the government’s job spend money taxpayer’s money to teach adult human beings to behave like civil and productive human beings.

    So you can call for that all you want but that has nothing to do with President Obama. You are criticizing him and the government for things that aren’t even their responsibility.

    Do yourself a favor and go take a basic civics class, because you obviously have no idea how this country works. Educate yourself next time before you demand the President of the United States do something that’s not even part of his job description.

    You sound like an idiot.

  • Tara

    You are such an ignoramus. Nobody loves white media images more than black men. Once they get some success they give it to white women. You must be inadequate in some way and that is why u OBSESS about how black women feel about media images. Dont worry about how black women feel about media images. Is it because you are a powerless black man and it makes you feel bad?huhhhhhhh?

  • WhatIThink

    It isn’t just in America. Last I checked black people were bad off throughout the Western Hemisphere and bad off in Africa as well. So it isn’t just in America that black folks have had to contend with white supremacy. If that was the case then why are blacks all over the world generally in the same position: on the bottom?

  • http://gravatar.com/actproductions I cant

    @SMH Ma’am or sir, please read paragraph 5. The problem is that this is all cyclical. Black men often react to fatherlessness by being irresponsible, having kids they don’t take care of and by becoming criminals.

    Black women respond to fatherlessness in much the same damn way. These women have low self-esteem because their daddies are missing, they don’t have any relationships to model their relationships after, they don’t have the expectation that they will be treated well by a man because the one man who was supposed to set the example went missing…So, that little girl who grows up surrounded by a bunch of women who have been treated like crap by the few men in their lives, ends up repeating the cycle. When Pookie asks her to have sex upon first meeting, or says “we don’t need no condom”…she obliges…all comes back to FATHERS…so, yes, black women and men should both take responsibility, but they would be in a better position to do so if they had…wait for it…FATHERS.

    We don’t have a dearth of mothers in the black community. In fact, that’s all we have in the black community. Mothers and grandmothers. The men are either absent, on a corner, dead or in jail. This is the reality of the majority of these black communities that are drowning in bullets. Point. Blank. Period.

  • Tara

    I would even go so far to say that black men even leave more white women fatherless with biracial children than white women of course not in actual numbers but as far as the percentage of babies by black men and babies by white men. I bet that more of the babies that are born to white women by black men than those born to white women by white men are fatherless. I would love to see that study. Look at our president, halle berry, mariah carey, alisha keys. It is even common when they have babies with white women and that is saying something.

  • Tara

    You are such an ignoramus. Nobody loves white media images more than black men. Once they get some success they give it to white women. You must be inadequate in some way and that is why u OBSESS about how black women feel about media images. Dont worry about how black women feel about media images. Is it because you are a powerless black man and it makes you feel bad?huhhhhhhh?

  • Tara

    Oh Haitians know about white supremacy dont you think. I mean what happened to Haitians is white supremacy at it’s finest. The french made sure that Haitains would suffer for generations because of that rebellion. I mean they are the poorest people on the planet. Although foreign blacks think that black americans dont thrive in America (which is also a misconception cause a lot do) blacks in other countries have their countries overtaken by whites. I mean whites have most of the wealth in all black countries. So what are blacks in Africa and the caribean doing wrong?

  • Tara

    When some inner city kid goes off and mistakenly kills a white kid is when something is going to change. I dont know what can be done but something is going to change.

  • Tara

    Haitains definitely know about white supremacy. They have experienced white supremacy at its finest. The French made sure that they suffered for generations because of that slave revolt. The Haitains are still suffering today.

  • http://cupofjo-jo.blogspot.com bk chick

    I was talking about why Haitians, and other immigrants who COME TO AMERICA tend to do better off…not haitians in their native countries who have to contend with those issues there as well. White supremacy is all the same but American history is unique and coming here from another country gives u the psychological freedom that can act as a catalyst for success. This is the point Kelley made and I was explaining to her why it may seem that immigrants do better. But comparing immigrants who left their native countries to blacks who have been here for years is apples to oranges. I’m sure if a group of AAs went to Haiti they will do much bette rthan the native Haitians because of the psychological freedom of not having to deal with systemic Haitian problems. People are reacting way too emotionally and not seeing shit for what it is.

  • WhatIThink

    The President talks about black men being the reason why black 13 year olds in the poorest communities of America have access to guns even though those communities don’t make the guns. Just like they have access to tons of drugs even though they don’t grow those same drugs.

    Anybody who believes all this is being run by 15 to 18 year old inner city black youth with no father in broken homes needs to have their heads examined. It is the same kind of delusional thinking that has these same 15 to 18 year old kids into thinking they are going to grow up and be big crime kingpins like Al Capone or Scarface in the first place. It is fairy tale fantasy land nonsense.

    The point being that the federal government knows more about how guns and drugs are getting into the black community than you think they do. Same for the drugs, prostitution and many other forms of crime.

    Yes black men are important to the black family but we cannot believe that these issues exist without being aided from the outside, or that the government is really doing all it can to stop it, which is I believe the point of the article.

  • Fantastico

    The absentee father/ irresponsible father epidemic isn’t working either.

    Why is there always more blame placed on the parent that sticks around?

    I guess old double standards are hard to let go of and women are easier to blame.

  • sosimple

    The president criticizes black men because it’s easy. It pleases both white bigots and black women. He won’t say anything about Loquiesha and her seven kids by six men because black women ain’t having t!

  • Fantastico

    YESSSSSS!

    “Pontificating on the perils of the black family” is worthless and insulting without necessary policy changes that induce job creation, education reform and safer communities.

    This is it!

  • http://www.facebook.com/kelley.johnson.75436 Kelley Johnson

    Oh, that’s when they put the wall up, my friend. They will wall off all them negros to be forever CERTAIN that they kill each other off.

    Mark my words, it’s coming. Because now, finally, I hear more and more black folk sounding like most of the posters here. No one is playing with these fools anymore. If they wanna act a fool, let them. Just wall them off and keep them away from the civilized world.

  • Tara

    I meant to type that I bet more black men leave white women with fatherless biracial children than white men

  • Tara

    Then that means that black people are dumb as bricks and gullible. These kids have choices and can choose to indulge or not. Please stop with the conspiracy theories…

  • Fergie

    Leave it to black people to always look to blame someone else.

  • WhatIThink

    Not “black people” but black children are the most susceptible to the “street culture” which teaches them that they can be crime kingpins before 18. Children are not adults is my point.

    My point is that most of the crisis of out of wedlock births and crime is amongst teens and young adults. Now why is that?

    Primarily because of peer pressure and the lack of a strong home environment. From day one of junior high, most black kids are forced to choose between ‘the thugs’ or ‘the squares’. And the biggest problem, whether they have two parents or a single parent is that black kids are generally not taught who they are as black people before they leave their households. Therefore they have no identity and from the early teens they are in a search for identity which the streets and peer pressure gives them. That is my point. And yes it is dumb. It is supposed to be dumb. The very idea that these poor black kids in the inner city on the bottom of the social and economic ladder actually THINK that they are going to be THE ONE to become this big time Al Capone (a white man) crime figure is sickening. Of all the people in the world why are they idolizing white men as their role models? These white criminals were just as racist as any other white population in that time frame. But that is what you get when black people have given up on trying to maintain an identity as black people beyond superficial materialistic fake identity given to you by white culture.

    That is the problem.

    And there is no argument that there is not ONE black owned gun manufacturing company in the United States (or anywhere else really). Glocks aren’t made by blacks and neither are UZIs or AK47s. So how on earth are they getting into these bottom of the barrel black kids hands then without some assistance from somewhere else? To suggest that somehow they magically flew there on their own is the conspiracy theory. Just like the idea that cocaine from Columbia magically showed up in the Hood on its own is nonsense as well. I mean the REAL Freeway Rick Ross story tells you that there was something going on, both in him and the fact that there is a FAKE Rick Ross trying to represent something he was never part of as a prison guard. And this is the fantasy story that our children are growing up believing in.

  • Lena

    Here I thought it was hopelessness, ignorance, poverty, having too many out of wedlock children that you can effectively parent. Now i know it is the absence of Black History in the schools, the Government, and gun manufacturers that caused the problem. I will just wait for these other groups to solve what ails our community.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    like jews blame nazis?

  • Wanda

    Can I say for the record that there are lot of young mothers these days who don’t stick around either, and are leaving children to be raised by grandmothers and aunties?

  • http://trueletterson.wordpress.com trueletterson

    .Correction Obama was raised by his mother and step father after that they sent him back to Hawaii to be raise by his grandmother and his grandfather until he left to go to college in California, he was never raised by a single mother read his book he always had two parents.

  • Anon

    Even DL Hughley admistted that the was “damaged” by not having a father around, and we can see the results everytime he opens his mouth regarding black women.

  • Anon

    Telling people about the lack of fathers is just going to get a lot of desperate women willing to blame the gubment, white supremacy, or the Easter bunny if necessary. There was once a saying that you’d have a better chance of winning the lottery than encountering three dudes from the hood who didn’t grow up in a woman’s home (i.e. they couldn’t claim “my daddy’s house” as a primary residence).

  • Anon

    SMH, you are bound and determined to shift EVERYTHING onto black women. That’s how I and everyone else knows you’re a man. Take some responsibility of what your breathern are up to if you want to consistently come on a WOMEN’S website to make noise.

  • http://gravatar.com/busdriversrant busdriversrant

    That’s right guest that’ll do it !!

    Let’s beat on black men!t easy!! It’s fun ! It’s safe!!

    And you don’t even have to call black women into question for their choices in men or their sexual behavior!

    Forget about mass incarceration!Forget about job discrimination!Forget about hustoric ant-black male bias!Forget about about black women willingly having children out of wedlock!No we’ll just blame that bad ol’ black man and get away scot free.

  • http://gravatar.com/busdriversrant busdriversrant

    “more sense for a real MAN to stay for that reason because he would know that his role was to provide for his family and would realize what ever little income he could bring in would help immensely.”

    How about it making more sense for a woman to being married before she decides to have children? Men are not raping you! Black women are willing having children out of wedlock from two-bit thugs

    stop blaming black men for your poor choices

  • joan

    He’s trying to tell them that it’s wrong and be a good role model, which he is. He is right and it’s good that he said something about it. You wouldn’t only take it in a negative way if you are one of the douchebags he is speaking of. Where are these fathers anyway? Their kids are roaming the streets aimless and causing trouble and that’s what happens when you have absentee parents. Young black men need a good person to look up to and model their lives after instead of overpaid egotistical sports stars and sexist money-hungry “i only care about money and hos” rap artists! Yes it is true! He should preach away because it will only help matters.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    some black men hate black women, maybe all women, and act out accordingly. some black women hate black men. there is a level of frustration out there.

    i say don’t hate the player hate the game.

    if we can change or eliminate the game we will be able to begin to come together.

  • whatever

    Exactly! Adam Lanza can be added to that list of children in single parent homes. Maybe if his father wasn’t living 2 states away and stayed in his home to raise his problematic child he wouldn’t have gunned down 26 children.

    Obama LOVES these pull yourselves up by your bootstrap speeches for black people! The funny thing is Romney said the EXACT same thing when the issue of gun control came up during their debate and black ppl were up in arms…. Obama says it and it’s the gospel, SMH. Wake up people! This weak ass speech will NOT get gangs and guns off the streets of any neighborhood in America. It starts at the top and as you can see the person at the very top is not trying to take responsibility for our out of control gun market. Instead let’s act like it’s impossible to control gangs and crime…. but wait!… when a spike in real estate let’s you know an area is ready for gentrification, all of a sudden neighborhoods can get cleaned up and turned around in the blink of an eye street by street.

  • http://gravatar.com/keimia Kam

    Jews only blame Nazis for the Holocaust and rightly so. They have their own country, language and a crapload of money. They don’t to need blame anyone else anymore.

  • http://gravatar.com/keimia Kam

    Who pretends this? Black women have been blamed since the Moynihan report.

  • http://trueletterson.wordpress.com trueletterson

    Nope I do not feel white people are better than us but one thing I do know they are more cunning, devious, scheming and conniving than us and the ones that come to us like they are our friends just to get us to help champion their cause ain’t our friends and for the most part white men and women love themselves and kind first and for a variety of reason understand that with freedom and rights come a responsibility to their god, their ancestors and society and that’s something a lot of us black people just don’t understand.

  • Nic

    Seriously, he’s a black man and a good husband and father. So not only does he know what he’s talking about, he’s exactly who a lot of the people running away from their responsibilities need to hear from-a real father figure.
    There are real problems that plague our communities and the lack of stable family units is a HUGE one. He turned his moment of compassion into a teachable moment. B/c that little girl WAS killed b/c of the problems in her community. The kids killed in Connecticut were killed in SPITE of having good families, but to get mad that “he didn’t lecture the white people” is ridiculous.
    If black kids were getting killed in spite of having married parents and present mothers and fathers and no drug use or gangs plaguing the neighborhoods, it would be a different conversation.
    White kids get killed at school by angry white boys and men. Black kids get killed b/c of imploding families, gangs, and drugs. And someone needs to talk about that or it will never end.

    If he didn’t talk about it, people would be whining that he is ignoring black people and communities, or ignoring his own blackness.

  • Nic

    If they are they are either in denial or projecting.
    Black women and girls do need to exercise better judgement in who they lay down with and open their legs for.

    If you lay down with trash then don’t be surprised when he is gone in the morning and you are left with a baby 9 months later.

    Black women tolerate a lot of garbage either b/c they don’t love themselves enough or b/c too many are growing up watching their mothers do the same thing. if you didn’t see your father married to or even loving your mom, you aren’t going to think that is what a family looks like, and you aren’t going to use love and commitment as a requirement for carrying a baby for someone.

    If you saw your mom laying down with a different man every few months and none of your siblings have the same father as you, you’re going to think that is normal too.

    We all have a responsibility to improve our communities, even if you weren’t raised in one plagued by problems.

    I volunteer with high schoolers b/c in 2013, it is amazing how much poor black kids think they can’t do b/c they never get to see examples of it (I have kids who are shocked by where I went to school and what I do for a living and who say “oh, black people don’t ever get to do that.”)

    I’ve had people who are “shocked” and said I was “blessed” that I didn’t have (presumably unplanned) kids (and the first time that was said to me, I was 21 and not married; I was like WTF, why would I have kids at this age and with no husband? But that is some people’s normal).

  • http://gravatar.com/ceecollegegal CeeCee

    So, black men do not watch the news?

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    jews have a country and money that WE (united states) GAVE to them. 3 billion a year i think. reparations anyone?

  • Orange Starr Happy Hunting

    Yes BK, yes yes yes!

  • Orange Starr Happy Hunting

    YES B!

  • Violet

    “Black and white fathers abandon their children, yet I’d be hard-pressed to imagine a speech like this given to children living in Newtown, Conn. Statistics are often reported to justify this strategy, but one side doesn’t have a monopoly on favorable statistics.” Cut it out! 70 percent of Black children are born outside of marriage. We are disproportiantely affected.

  • Khalfani Zhanubis El Bey

    If the men are missing, how can it be the men that cause the issue of the children that was raised by a woman? Product on the street with pants sagging, came from the single women. The willie lynched methodology has be handed down through the woman to assist the caveman in his destruction of the black male. I’m a black man and all my children are mines…Obama can kiss my ass. My children will never beg that trash for bread!

  • Ayana

    Obama gave a pretty detailed talk about things that are affecting young black children so it’s interesting to see you pluck out one or two sentences that are out of context to bash him. After meeting with a group of young men, he then gave a speech to the students; I am sure the lack of fathers in their lives is a topic that came up…my husband mentors teenage boys and believe it or not the topic of their absentee fathers comes up often (by the boys). I think that part of what he was also saying (while speaking to mostly teenagers), is don’t become an absentee father; it’s easy to make a baby harder to be a father. If we as a people want to keep pretending that nothing is wrong and that part of the problem (violence in our communities) isn’t coming from peoples home environment then nothing will ever change. So instead of bashing the president for not being superman, why don’t you ask yourself what you can do to make things better? Instead of bashing someones leadership skills, why don’t you become a leader and stop waiting for someone you can follow?

  • Tara

    They come from women and men. Are u nuts? Whether you take care of your kids or not as much as you CLAIM you do, you sound like you have a pretty ghetto mentality. A lot of men CLAIM that they are good fathers but they just do what they are SUPPOSED to do and constantly pat themselves on the back. The standards are so low that what is considered a good black father is not much these days.

  • Tara

    SMH your comments are ludicrous. Black women are not the only women that raise black men’s babies alone. Black men also leave white women with babies in huge numbers and we all know that those dont start off as “sub par” circumstances considering the way black men worship white women. Our own president is the product of a black man and a white woman. An african one at that and I never expected african men to be as trifling as african american. He was an african with a Phd and he left Barack’s mother. So did the fathers of Alisha Keyes, Hallie Berry and Mariah Carey. Black men leave all women with kids. Oh and did you forget that Tiki Barber left his wife while she was pregnant with twins?

    Negro you are crazy!

  • Khalfani Zhanubis El Bey

    @ Tara My claims are base on facts…I didn’t need welfare and handout. But the caveman has it build into the system to take care of the negro bed wench. And she produce the by product of coons, sambos, niggas and more negro’s to maintain massa system. “You negro” is the factory that keep this system going. You have become the black men worst enemy next to the niggas, you don’t even need a gun but do more damage to black progress every day. Sad wench go pray for your self, and give thanks to your master!

  • Tara

    As ignorant as your comments are, I am sure that you grew up without a father. Black men who grow up with father’s usually have an extra layer of ignorant.

  • Khalfani Zhanubis El Bey

    Thanks for that point!

  • Tara

    Khalfani, I dont have any children out of wedlock and my parents were married for 35 years before my father passed away. But from the anger in your comments, I would bet that Daddy wasnt around for you…lol

  • Tara

    I guess Daddy wasnt around for you either.

  • Tara

    You are such a pathetic, bitter black man.

  • Khalfani Zhanubis El Bey

    @ Tara wrong again! try harder that’s all you got…I’m fatherless?

  • simplyme

    Its sad that Tara had to take it there…but its true and maybe the only ways mentally deluded guys like SMH will get it. Black men are much more likely to abandon and have OOW children with women whether they be White, Latin, Asian, Purple at higher rates that any other men.

    Black men are moral capable human beings who can also be held responsible. Women cannot bear the sole burden of morality in a community. By denying men the right to be held responsible for their actions you’re in a way denying them of their masculinity and their ability to be respected.

    The solutions seem bleak since this problem is so cyclical but a key way anyone can contribute is through mentoring. Big Brothers Big Sisters is always campaigning locally to specifically recruit more Black men. 95% of the kids on the waiting list are boys many of whom end up with mentors of other races..which is fine.. but what message does this absence continue to send young Black men?

    Why are educated Black men less likely to volunteer their time than educated Black women? Honestly, I don’t know…but I see this as one of those issues where you can only be in one of two camps, part of the problem or part of the solution.

  • http://gravatar.com/prescoja prescoja

    On 2/19/2013 popular radio host Michael Baisden did an entire show in which he blamed women for the severed relationships between child and father. He offered no facts or statistics, but had several men call in and make the claim that it was the mother’s fault. This may occur, but the evidence shows that the problem is largely due to black men abandoning their children. Also, parental alienation is just as likely to be perpetrated by a woman as it is a man. As a reporter, his comments were irresponsible and unfounded! Does he think single black mothers choose to be at the poverty line with no male role model for their children? That is certainly what he has asserted. Anecdotal evidence is not fact. There are 17 million single parents in this country and 13 million of them are women. I bet if we ask the single mothers to point blame, it would go to the men. However, the blame game does little to solve problems. We have empirical data, that shows the exact opposite of Baisden’s claims and he should have looked at it before doing what has been historically accepted: Blaming women for social deluge.

  • JNoire

    *standing ovation* Everything you said is truth. Thank you! I was thinking the same thing! You put it so eloquently.

  • JNoire

    *standing ovation* Guest1234 Everything you said is truth. Thank you! I was thinking the same thing! You put it so eloquently.

  • WhatIThink

    I think a lot of people on this thread are missing the point.

    The problem is that black men and women have no power. Period. It doesn’t make sense to try and say it is simply a black man’s problem or a black woman’s problem, because it takes BOTH to make a baby and BOTH to raise them and therefore BOTH are ultimately responsible for the fate of the community. And NEITHER ONE have actually done anything to build anything to support and maintain a healthy community. Black men are running around trying to be kingpin thug and looking like a sambo clown sitting in jail because as a kid nobody slapped the sh*t out of him and told him he wasn’t a thug. Black women running around trying to be cute and following the latest fads as mindless consumers trying to pretend to be something they aren’t. Both black males and females are the problem because they do not accept and acknowledge the reality they live in in a white dominated society.

    No, I don’t blame white supremacy for black youth killing each other with guns. I blame black males AND females for that. For getting together and making the babies in the first place and then for dropping these babies off in a world that is inherently against them with no knowledge of self and no agenda for building anything for themselves. And it is that mindless lack of identity that causes black folks to run around until way later in life chasing an identity (in OZ) looking for the latest fad, looking for the latest hustle, trying to be slick and pretty and getting nowhere fast. And as adults we suffer the consequences.

    That said, while I blame black men and women for the self hate among the youth AND adults in black society, I absolutely blame the larger white society for the guns and the drugs that have become epidemic in the black community. And this same pattern exists everywhere on the planet where black folks exist, including the African continent.

    FACT: Who are the largest consumers of drugs in America? White folks.
    Who are the biggest distributors of guns and drugs in America? White folks.
    Who make up the largest part of the prison population for drugs? Black folks.

    Do the math.

    Now why is that and why are black folks still running around allowing their children to grow up pretending they are supposed to be kingpins and thugs for life terrorizing the entire community over a childish fantasies that will never come true? What the hell has being a thug done for the black community except left it in the gutter?

    If the epidemic of crime, violence and poverty was NOT systematic, whether you call it white supremacy, racism, slavery or whatever you want, then why are black people all over the world in pretty much the SAME circumstances no matter where you go?

    It is the same thing everywhere, with poor blacks making up the very bottom of the social and economic ladder and white folks and others at the very top. Blacks own no major factories, shipping companies or transportation companies, including gun manufacturing companies, but yet even in the slums of Brazil or the Slums of South Africa, these kids have access to guns. They can get guns but they cant get a good education. They can get guns but they cant get good housing. And we are to believe that ALL of this is purely the black man’s fault all by itself? They just put themselves in poverty all on their own? Surely not.

    There is no black Shangri-La or magical place where black folks live a life of prosperity and plenty with no stress and strife and conflict. It does not exist.

    We as a people need to stop making excuses for our failures AS A PEOPLE, not as men, not as women but as a people together. That is just trying to make excuses for the overall failure of the community as a whole.

    And it is because of that failure that we have become subject to the predations of the MAMMY state that has been pimping our women and men, primping and pampering them to be sold to whoever has the swag and dollars, because we as a people have no identity or culture that defines us outside of the materialistic stereotypes and fake identities given to us by the media and popular culture.

  • Mademoiselle

    How many of the black men who terrorize their neighborhoods do you think watched or will watch this (or any of Obama’s) speech? How many of their deadbeat dads do you think watched or will watch?

  • v

    I am so tired of black women acting like they have nothing to do with the plight of the black community. Choosing to mate with charismatic, irresponsible bad boys and complaining when they refuse to behave responsibly is idiotic. These thugs and ex-cons have so many women chasing them they have no reason to change. Don’t hold your breathe waiting for the president to address this reality.

  • Melyssa

    “Black women collectively promote irresponsible men, and only change up once the bills need to be paid & the children need to be provided for. Very few women want to thoroughly address this issue, and then wonder why the BC is in shambles”

    I am a woman and I wholeheartedly stand behind this statement!!!

    I had 2 GF’s who knowingly messed around with a man for years knowing he wasn’t about shyte, they break up to make up — “wash rinse repeat cycle” until she finally gets pregnant and then she has one of her “AHA” moments whereas now she is demanding they become a family unit and for him to step up to the plate and provide, although all along while dating him she knew that he could barely keep a job and/or provided for the child/kids he already had.

  • Mademoiselle

    I read the transcript of the speech recently, and I’ll admit that I (and seemingly a majority of the commenters) had not read it prior to this discussion. The speech actually only has about one paragraph on fathers being present and many paragraphs about policies and social reform, which I do appreciate. When I had only read this Clutch article, it seemed as though the president only spoke about absentee fathers, so I’ll take that on the nose — he addressed both issues, which is what I would expect of him. On the topic of behavior modification, there are MANY federally funded programs in that realm already. From the numerous smoking advertisements to alcoholism campaigns to texting while driving campaigns to obesity/let’s move campaigns to encouraging girls to consider STEM fields to a lot of the requirements for participating in the first time homebuyers programs to gun buy back programs to home economics classes (or their modern-day versions) to PBS kids shows to go green campaigns to recycling laws, the government has already been heavily invested in behavioral modification programs for centuries. So I don’t see the harm in adding programs to teach the parts of the black community that need the enlightenment alternatives to life decisions (i.e. miniature enrichment courses for underemployed people to quickly learn a marketable skill while searching for a new job, teen parenting courses for the (sadly) large population of teen parents, non-traditional-families counseling/mediation programs for parents raising kids in dual households, career/trade planning and coaching programs in urban middle schools to avoid waiting until kids are just a couple years away from adulthood to start thinking what they’ll actually be able to succeed at doing to support themselves and their families, innovative child support and custody arrangements to mitigate parental tension without sacrificing kids’ developments –something like the Gosselins did, which may not work for everyone, could benefit some kids by establishing a single home for the kids that each parent alternates living in so the burden is on the parents to shuffle their routines/arrangements, not the kids, and even some high school courses on how to manage relationships and social skills, just to name a few ideas off the top of my head). The government is in place to ensure the public receives the services it needs to maintain a functioning society. I think behavioral modification programs that aid segments of the public in understanding how to be positive contributors to society falls under that jurisdiction.

  • http://seritatheresa.wordpress.com seritatheresa

    He spoke about bad fathers and the absence of male role models. Why are people angry? There is a need for gun control. A great share of the absence of male role models can be blamed on the Criminal Justice System and the drug war, but those things can’t be fixed by the people in the audience. They can stop allow their kids to eat so much junk food. They can watch their kids do their homework. They absolutely can be better fathers!

  • josh gibson

    Obviously what has been tried has failed our children. How about a different taste of food for thought. Refer to the opening lines of a speech entitled Normalcy Never Again given at the March on Washington in August 1963. The speaker referred to the Negro in America one hundred years after The Emancipation Proclamation as an exile in his own home. What the black people of that era realized was that segregation had formed a psychological ocean of oppression separating our people into a nation apart. This black America where we lived was different from the America where we desired to live.

    So we climbed aboard a ship called freedom and set out across the stormy waters of segregation to journey to America we had heard about, dreamed about, but had not known. The Civil Rights Movement was the black journey across the ocean to America. Instead of disembarking on Ellis island to a vision of give me your poor your tired your huddled masses yearning to be free we got off the boat under the Lincoln Memorial allowing how we like our ethnic brethren before had a dream.

    Our dream was that migration from black America to the United States of America would be the end of the journey. In reality it was merely a beginning. The history of immigrants in America is one of suffering along the road from marginal outsider to member in good standing in mainstream America. we like the Irish, Jewish people, Italians and others who proceeded us would have to trod this daunting trail. Unlike them we have suffered three times in America-slavery, Jim Crow, and now assimilation.

    It is normal for immigrant sons to turn to crime to grab hold of the opportunities available in America because discrimination denies them the same shot at achievement mainstream Americans view as their birth right. Fatherless households are not the problem. Al Capone’s father raised him, Myer Lansky’s father raised him. These men simply saw their parent’s old country ways as meaningless in a country where those ways could not plot a path to success.

    What our community is suffering through is the process of Americanization all immigrant groups go through. The Irish family broke down in the late nineteenth century under the stress of Americanization. Arson was once known as Jewish lightning during the heyday of men like Dutch Schultz and Bugsy Siegel. That Brownsville band of killers known as Murder, Inc did not have a single black member. The drive by was invented in Chicago in the 1920s by Italian gangsters at war with Irish and Jewish mobsters over liquor territories.

    My point is if you look at other groups assimilating in American culture you will see much of the same dysfunction observed in certain black communities today. The question is not where is the black father it is how to accelerate the rate of assimilation so like the Irish father before him he can find his way back home. I am self publishing a book called Stepchilde later this year. It explains in detail the whys of modern black America and offers some solutions. Give it a chance.

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    “The problem is that black men and women have no power”

    if blacks had no power there would be no need for white supremacy. we have enormous power. the day that we stop fighting one another and look at the white man, this mess is OVER. that is why they work so hard to keep us infighting.

  • http://iamspokenword.wordpress.com iamspokenword

    So he was out of line for making his comments? ….I’m confused…What part of what he was saying was untrue/didn’t need to be said?

  • Wanda

    WOMEN do not love irresponsible men. IRRESPONSIBLE WOMEN love IRRESPONSIBLE MEN.

    IRRESPONSIBLE MEN love IRRESPONSIBLE WOMEN.

    Some of us act like Dr. Betty Shabazz and Coretta Scott King are out here dating and mating with drug dealers. That is clearly not what I see everyday.

    Unfortunately, I see a lot of damaged, directionless souls: both women and men.

    We’ve rejected the values of the past that kept us together in difficult days, and traded them in for the random sex culture of others, that few can form a strong family in.

  • Tara

    I was telling one of my glrlfriends and she is a single mother with a guy who does not love her and does nothing for his son without her having to take him to court. She grew up without her father. I grew up in a two parent home with a great father. Now I was seeing the handsome guy who I really liked and I am confident that he cared about me. We were extremely COMPATIBLE in EVERY way but he had never met his father before. He was a little damaged. He had never seen his mother being loved and taken care of. He had a lot of ways about him that demonstrated that. That is the one thing that bothered me about him. But what is interesting is that I was telling this to my girlfriend that I mentioned above. She could not get that I had concerns about marrying and having children with this guy because the chemistry was so strong between us.

    I told her that the chemistry does not matter because one of the most important decisions that I will make in my life is who I choose as the father of my child and husband. I told her that this could affect the quality of my life. She was looking at me like she was a deer in headlights. She was clueless.

  • Wanda

    I think that folks are very sensitive. I didn’t see him say anything bad about fathers at all. In fact, I think he tried to stress how important they are.

    When I’ve mentored girls through my church, so many of them have been taught that fathers aren’t needed to raise children so we really need to bring the culture back to where it used to be.

  • Tara

    I support Obama’s speech and I dont usually agree with your comments but I so agree with you on this one and it will be even harder now with all of these post racial negroes. Outside of that, I think that we have differing opinions about everything else ;)

  • http://gravatar.com/trueletterson trueletterson

    You are right!

  • http://trueletterson.wordpress.com trueletterson

    Wanda keep teaching, teach Wanda teach, we need millions of young black women like you cause women are our first teacher and as james said in a generation “this mess will be over”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://gravatar.com/jamesfrmphilly jamesfrmphilly

    i’ll repeat..the day we stop fighting one another and fight the white man united there WILL be a whole new thing.

    the function of the system of white supremacy is to keep black people self destructing. they know our power better than we do ourselves.

    black people have the power to rock this world.

    as messed up as we are the world follows our every move. black art is THE art world wide. billions are made off our ghetto thugs without them even knowing it. little japanese girls wannabe sistas. white women throw themselves at any black man they can get.

    we ARE the sleeping giant and the system of white supremacy keeps feeding the anesthetics.

    if you take any group of people and teach them self hate, you can then become a liberal and stand by and watch that group self destruct. check the native americans.

    all we gotta do black people is stop fighting one another.

  • QuickWItt

    A good father can only help the situation so don’t belittle the effects of good leadership of both male and female in a household. Your statements should be to assist the idea of a home where all leaders are combined in their efforts not the speculation of how your first thoughts were drawn to the idea of how you believe that we aren’t the only ones. None of the sections of our human family should have this problem. So don’t defer or deflect this idea instead being if you were doing your job at it’s max you would show our president up by posing a comprehensive hypothesis that incorporates this idea into a statement that would create a plan that might just be a panacea.

  • http://trueletterson.wordpress.com trueletterson

    james again you are right and no more need to be said!

  • WhatIThink

  • Anon

    LATELY black women have been castigated? There is a whole INDUSTRY designed to call us the lowest of the low and guess who the main performers of that type of music are?

    What do you mean “most of the time black women do not get addressed?”, so we should be GRATEFUL for this media campaign against us? I and many others would like to be LEFT ALONE.

    “This is an awesome comment, but you are minimizing the white influence that got us to this point.”–> Why are y’all two minimizing what you men COULD be doing… right now?
    (I know the answer, but do you?)

  • Anon

    No, I hate the player that’s trying to block my path too. I’m not waiting to change a whole system to get my life now.
    “we will be able to begin to come together.”–> Why am I trying to “come together” with someone who hates me? You said yourself that all of your friends are trifling “self-haters”, and that you hear many horrifying comments behind closed doors and BW are supposed to ignore all of that to “come together?”. Blaiming white supremacy is OVER as a main defense for foolishness. Finito.

  • Anon

    @ Kelly

    No one wants to admit that those immigrant communities and Latino communities SUPPORT their children’s progress, not hinder it out of jealousy or spite. So instead of hearing “Why you need to go to that fancy college, you can stay right here” (and then having family members sabotaging people) in other communities you have parents trying to get a second job so their child can study more. Instead of constantly asking if their daughters “Have a man”, those other kids are pushed to hit the books, and participate in extra curriculars. Boys have their behavior POLICED by grown men in their homes and neighborhoods so they know not to get out of line. No one wants to admit that there are community owned business in which to network for employment, etc… on and on and so forth. Basically, there are no MEN in the BC, and what you see is what you get when that happens.

  • Dw

    Why do you all even care about the black family, didn’t you all say you all want white men, love the t.v show scandal, black men ain’t ish and all soughs of crap you all say to then say lets hold the black family together. ha! With a 72% out of wedlock rate the damage have been done, how the heck can you reverse 2 generations of this. You all have failed and it is now that you realize you all are building weak communities with weak men you all love to lay up with. sigh give me a break its too late. the so call real men you women never wanted them so why on earth should they stay, stay to baby sit your children from other men, usually thugs or idiot that can’t tell the difference between his a ss and his elbow. All the real men the majority of them have already woken up to the foolishness and still would not stay around because many of you women are just damaged goods. Its too late, so just accept what we have now, accept that the black community is a lost community so you either start over by leaving the so call community, or marry outside your race. With a 72% out of wedlock rate, how on earth can you reverse that when the mentality of many of you women are in the gutter and is still the same in 2013? Its just my opinion n you can thumbs me down all you want but it is not going to help change the current situation. In order for things to change you women have to really really start dealing with responsible men, responsible black men, that is the only way things can change for the better.

    These black men are the builders, the ones who create and establish order, protection and work. In this 2013 you women still cannot figure that out? Christ. smdh ..

  • Anon

    Wah Wah Wah.

    Mass incarceration–> quit committing crimes.

    Job discrimination–> We get it too, and?

    Historic black male bias?–> What group of women is daily degraded by men in their community for profit, and sold as a form of entertainment with NOT ONE male detractor?

    Who exactly is getting away scot free? These kids are being raised by someone, somewhere. Didn’t say it was always WELL, but they’re going home to somebody’s house.

  • Anon

    @The other Jess,

    Yeah, miss me with that “self-hate” shame and apply it to someone where it would be true.

    Obama wasn’t raised in a poor black communiity, he was raised with MEN in the homes for the majority of his childhood and in communities where children weren’t running the streets with guns.

    “to the point that those communities can no longer deal with the crime on their own, “–> White communities usually don’t let it GET to that point in the first place.

    “violence-preventing initiatives,”–> That used to be called EFFECTIVE parenting, usually within a functioning community.

  • Wayne Johnson Ph.D>

    The President has done nothing of substance to address the issues of poverty, the disproportionate and racist incarceration of black men, let alone his tone deaf, pro charter education policies. As a former community organizer he should know better. The sad fact is, of course he does, yet continues this reckless,ignorant rhetoric.

  • http://trueletterson.wordpress.com trueletterson

    We must realize as black people this is who Obama is, understand he never said he was anything different we just thought he was because he is a man of color and that’s on us. We black people must still hold him accountable as we have other president we black men and black women must whining and placing blame and play to our strengths and strengthen our weakness, be accountable to each other, family and children and this mess will get better.

  • damidwif

    thank you, ask me, for posting this. this info has been known and readily available for a looooong time. i used to talk about such things on sites like this, but a lot of the commentors arent ready to digest it…becuase it presents an alternate reality, forcing people to think outside the box they have been closed in.

    i have worked in black poor communities and in white wealthy ones. the divorce rate is 50% and 2nd marriage divorce rate is like 60 or 70%. post divorce, many women and children fall in to poverty. there is a court system that bankrupts middle class families. marriage is no panacea…but let white people tell it..with black people mimicking the white man’s word. and fathers are not absent if they are right there in the same community and neighborhood (or same house) so fatherlessness aint it either.

    is it the character of men, period…..?

  • Shannon

    Get a grip guys. The lack of fatherhood is real in our community. President Obama did the right thing by addressing it. Stop being so sensitive and get real. We need to hear it.

  • http://www.thinkaboutit-knowaboutit.com/ Danté

    People don’t like o hear the truth, and the truth is that fatherlessness is an issue in our community. It’s not just a black thing, but it affects black people in a unique way given the history we have of being torn apart from one another. I understand the frustration the author has, but he has to understand that we must take Obama’s calls for personal responsibility into account.

  • A.P.

    Kaeli you said,”The author of this nonsensical article needs just stop. Obama just cannot win. I’m still trying to figure out what the problem was with what he said. Telling men in general to take care of the children they bring into this world is now unacceptable.
    Obama was speaking to a “black audience” specifically and this is not the first time he did this.
    Obama never made such comments to white audiences, just black audiences. Why, because his speech sounds like something an “Uncle Tom would say to appease white males. He appears to be Uncle Tomming for homosexual marriage as well. He’s kissing too much butt. (1Coritnthians 6:9)
    I am a christian who has sinned but not a sinner-saved by obedience to the gospel through faith, believing, and being baptized for the forgivenss of my sins. I state this because the
    world would identify me as a Native American and a black person-which I gave up for the cause of THE MESSIAh-YESHUA. Yet I despise Obama and Oprah Winfrey for their direct and indirect put down of black males.
    This does not let off Mitt Romney and his elitism and his racist Mormon religion or the republicans. But getting back to Obama-I challenge him to tell the white audiences the same thing he told the black audiences.
    Obama is not a muslim but he certainly isn’t a christian-that goes for all the democrats and republicans or any ideology or political view .

    Real christianity is the only ideology that is acceptable: Not catholic, protestant, Jehovah’s Witness, Mormons, or any other institution. One church, one faith, one baptism-emersion.

    The Acolyte

  • Laila

    Not exactly sure how black women are accountable for absentee fathers. They do their jobs by staying and raising the child. You don’t have to stay with your woman, but you are accountable for your children, they’re your responsibility. You have to pay for their upkeep and visit them since they’re yours.

  • Laila

    They say that because these men are ready to leave as soon as the woman is pregnant. These woman have to stay strong because WHAT else can they do? They can’t NEED them if they’re not there. Thank God for Black women because all our black children would be in foster care/orphanages if they did what black men did by LEAVING.

    This problem affects so many black communities. I am Somali, and although most somali children are born into wedlock/married families, the father/husband always leaves very early in the child’s life, or stays but has no job/is deadbeat. We, as a black community really need to come together and find a solution.

  • GeekMommaRants

    You seem to forget that POTUS is fatherless. The president knows what i’t’s like to not have a father (Black Man) in his life. Did we forget this?

  • Tara

    Oh really……lol

  • Tara

    Interesting that you come onto a black female blog and constantly comment. I dont go onto male blogs. Why? Cause I dont care. Why dont you go and find a white, asian, or latina and leave us alone? Why because daddy left you. I grew up with a father in the home and I can tell you that you do not know what you missed out on. My father was a working man but he gave us a comfortable life. My brother and nephew on the other hand are educated professionals. My brother is a well respected leader nationally in his field. My nephew is ivy league educated and is doing amazing things overseas. My mother, older sisters, cousins dont have kids out of wedlock. From your comments, I can tell that you have violent tendencies.

  • http://Clutch SL

    “It’s not just a black thing”

    Ummm…with 73% of black children being raised in single-parent homes, it does seem like we’ve cornered the market in a unique way.

    Granted you will find fatherlessness in all people groups, but we have taken it to an extreme.

    I support President Obama’s so-call to action, but I am very tired of hearing it in a lopsided fashion. Women are just as responsible for the dysfunction and yet no leader, no celebrity spokesman has ever ever ever taken BW to task for making such lousy decisions.

    That needs to change.

  • Mel

    Um what’s the problem here? Haye accountability much??!!

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