Black People : Role Models

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by Heartbeat, Jan 31, 2002.

  1. Heartbeat

    Heartbeat Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Messages:
    1,440
    Likes Received:
    86
    Ratings:
    +86
    It concerns me greatly that the role models for our young black children are almost always athletes or entertainers. While their success is admirable, the chances of making it in the professional sports and entertainment business is slim to none, and slim just got on the bus. Frankly, I believe it's all part of the plan to keep us shooting for unreachable stars while others take advantage of realistic opportunities. The more black children trying to be pro athletes or entertainers, the fewer of them will be trying to do what is necessary to get jobs that whites, asians, and mid-easterners are getting. Whenever I hear someone tell a young person "You can be a Michael Jordan or a Bill Cosby, Oprah, or a Snoop Dogg" I quickly snatch that kid and say "No...You need to be a Doctor, Lawyer, Engineer, Accountant, Policy Analyst, Teacher, Biologist, or any other profession where you can make a decent living, support your family, pay taxes, and live a successful life" Our children need to know that they can be more than what they see black folks doing on TV. There is nothing wrong with trying to achieve a dream of being a pro athlete or entertainment star. However, when you look at the numbers of people who actually make it in those professions....It just doesn't happen. For once, I would like to see officials of depressed schools invite people of main stream professions speak to the kids about making it rather than athletes and entertainers. These are real role models. People who get up every day and go to work, people who have to go to school, work with other people. To me these are the people our kids need to see, be like...look up to and emulate. Not that athletes and entertainers are bad people, they are just too rare for our kids to think it can happen for them as well. Of course we all know that it can happen...but what are the odds? We need to change who our role models are or at least add to the list and diversify the arena from which the role model comes from.

    BE
     
  2. alyce

    alyce Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2001
    Messages:
    2,922
    Likes Received:
    83
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Counselor
    Location:
    mid-atlantic
    Ratings:
    +85
    As I was reading

    your thoughts on positive role models, it came to me that, as Kemestry as already stated, these worthy professions you've described don't have the glamour attached. Young children are impressionable, and if the parents (it all comes back to proper parental guidance and motivation....you know this well) are just as "star struck" due to media hype as their children, then it's already a lost battle.

    There are schools in local school districts which have built in to their programs special days and weeks for recognizing career choices that will be beneficial to their students. These programs were implemented due to concerned parents and school board members and administrators in inner city areas who took proactive measures in bringing in professionals to speak to the children, from the elementary/middle school/junior high school level on up.

    It is very important to portray positive role modeling. In my field, I am faced with the parents of these children you speak of, and we are finding so many in need of basic "parenting" skills. There is no way for the children to grab a hold of the importance of seeking a realistic, and/or higher level of life if it is not being taught in the home. The values are missing, and since the television and media stands in for the parents in too many cases, children latch on to what's being taught on the tube. And even the schools that are conscious of and striving to provide parents/students with necessary information to ensure successful, self sufficient lives, realize that there will only be a small minority of people who will get it, and take advantage of the opportunities available to better their futures.

    But we work in this service in hopes of reaching that one somebody.

    Thank you for sharing today.

    a
     
  3. Heartbeat

    Heartbeat Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Messages:
    1,440
    Likes Received:
    86
    Ratings:
    +86
    Thanks Kem and Alyce,
    You are right it IS all about what parents expose their children to. I'm comforted in knowing your children have great role models in you as they grow into being responsible adults.

    BE
     
  4. UPTOWNE

    UPTOWNE Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    May 24, 2001
    Messages:
    116
    Likes Received:
    10
    Occupation:
    Electric Powerlineman
    Location:
    NYC
    Ratings:
    +11
    I blame YOU & DESEGREGATION

    Ok I know what ya thinking here comes UP with his radical views (and I am looking out the corner of my eyes I see Destee polishing up her butt kicking boots , so I am gonna TRY to tone it down) back in the days of protests lynchings and segregation. We had all our role models living down the street, and you knew them all the doctor lawyer, school teacher, undertaker, policeman, fireman etc…. They all lived in the neighborhood they couldn’t live anywhere else. And young kids aspired to be like them cause they were the prominent people we held as role models! Then Civil Rights Movement came along and anybody who was anybody started integrating in to where ever their money would carry them. Leaving behind only those who could not afford to move ( GHETTOS) Now the only people these kids see with any real success are pimps drug dealers and number book makers ( and god knows we don’t want them aspiring to be like them) so next is TV sports fame and stardom yes its seems a bit far fetched but they got a shot so don’t act as if its impossible (I bet you buy lottery tickets, point is we all have our dreams) Nobody saying “fool you wasting your money” every time you slap down a dollar.

    Ok now lets move forward What are you doing besides pointing out the problem? There’s an old Japanese proverb that says “FIX THE PROBLEM NOT THE BLAME” We are all well aware of what is wrong and what is needed! However what are YOU doing besides “ quickly snatch that kid and say "No...You need to be a Doctor, Lawyer, Engineer, Accountant, Policy Analyst, Teacher, Biologist, or any other profession” Are you going into the schools talking to the kids saying look “this is what I am doing, I started out like you, this is how I got here, I earn this” are you asking your friends in business to come with you to the schools? ( all you have to do is call a principal at any school they would be glad to have ya!) or are you waiting for somebody to do it cause you just don’t have the time? ( this is not a personal attack just questions for you to ask yourself and others the next time the subject of role models is brought up) Well I am that SOMEBODY I do all I have mentioned I live in the community to show others that I am making it and they can too I visit schools I have been a sports coach I advise teach mentor groom search for jobs them have prominent people from al walks of life come in and talk to them I also represent as strong black Married father who is and has raised his kids I even run my own youth group! I am not saying this to brag just to point out that I am a role model and I do my share and then some. I am not waiting on somebody or pointing out what needs to be done. I am doing it!
    Now here’s my final point NEVER POSE A PROBLEM UNLESS YOU HAVE A SOLUTION ( what’s the sense in beating a dead horse?) Here’s my Solution next April 26th ( bring your Daughter/ Child to work day) instead you and a group of your professional friends get together and Visit a school in the inner city or a black community you will do far more good (then showing your child how you make the doughnutz) and bring your child along!

    UT OHHHHHH …………but I did say I would “TRY!”
     
  5. Heartbeat

    Heartbeat Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Messages:
    1,440
    Likes Received:
    86
    Ratings:
    +86
    Uptown with an E,
    Good to see you again. I'm sorry you missed the part where I said "Of course we all know that it can happen" However, I want to think we are capable of being so much more than athletes and entertainers.
    You are correct . The doctors and lawyers and professional(s) working people...left black neighborhoods probably because they felt they work hard enough and deserve to live more comfortably just like anybody else who works hard, wanted to make an effort to be safer, a place with better schools and opportunities for their children. I don't see anything wrong with that. I don't see anything wrong with moving from one environment to another to achieve that. The folks that are "Left behind" have the same opportunities the folks who left do. I believe it is a personal choice to "do better" in all ways. To me there is no need to be a victim of the environment. IT HAS BEEN DONE! BEING DONE EVERYDAY! To me it is somewhat unfair to blame those who strive to make it for not carrying those who don't strive to make it. The welfare of the black community is not my responsibility. The welfare of my black family is my responsibility. If everyone took care of themselves and "did better" then the whole community would "be better" It all starts with individuals and individual families. Choices.
    Intergration did play a trick on the Black Community, as did One-Way Busing, as did welfare. We can't go back and change what happened to us. We need to move on with everybody else in this country. We are too strong a people to be perpetual and eternal victims.
    As for me personally, I read to black elementary school children once a week, I talk to black parents about preparing their children for college. I've coached Midnight Basketball. My team (as with all the teams in the league) were made up of players who included the hard core brothers. the brothers who will commit crime before and after the game...the mean spirited brothers, the brothers with kids, the brothers lost with no direction. From all indications I helped at least a few of them grow into responsible young men. Not angels but certainly much wiser, stronger, focused people all the way around.
    Didn't mean to give a bio here but you made some assumptions about me I wanted to clear up.

    Thanks for the read Uptowne,
    BE
     
  6. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

    Country:
    United States
    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2001
    Messages:
    69,983
    Likes Received:
    3,978
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    BUSINESS owner
    Location:
    Da~WINDY*CITY //CHICAGO
    Ratings:
    +4,178
    simply me

    uptowne ya point made as well as others
    Heartbeat i agree wit ya 100% and to add
    I am da role model for my children other
    children coz my love for them i walk the street
    working hard to give back a little something
    ya right my kids don't see a sport man nor a
    superstar singing they see me A MAN A FATHER
    and truely I am da role model from parent hood
    ya making points that i wish too see our children
    grow and blossom into DOCTORS , Lawyers, even
    a congressmen or our next president it all starts
    at home and what u learn so it's simple too me
    coz .........I AM MY KEEPER I AM THERE ROLE MODEL.
     
  7. Nia Maishani

    Nia Maishani Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2001
    Messages:
    1,314
    Likes Received:
    1
    Occupation:
    Business Owner
    Location:
    Displaced at the Junction of Hoosiers and Bluegras
    Ratings:
    +1
    Good topic, Heartbeat

    Greetings all,

    Heartbeat, this discussion reminds me of a very good book and initiative that is out there, known as "Project 2019". Charles Sanford of Chicago came up with the idea to promote Education instead of Entertainment/Athletics to our children, as it is a path that will far more likely lead to success. The mission is to bring the entire Nubian community up to socioeconomic equality with everyone else--through educational equality (formal education)--by the year 2019, which will mark the 400th anniversary of Emancipation. A fantastic, and entirely feasible plan.

    The odds are ridiculously slim for someone to become a Michael Jordan or Master P, etc., and one key fact is that regardless of which profession one chooses, it will take a tremendous amount of TOIL to get to such a high point, and these children today do not recognize that fact. They are simply following a pipe dream. They don't realize how many men make it to the NBA only to wind up needing something else to fall back on, because they were not one of the top athletes in the NBA, or one of the best players on their team, etc. Entertainers descend as soon as their era or fad descends. There are FEW "major" celebs that become classic stars.

    Not to be long-winded, but as far as "starts at home" sentiment, I agree with that, however, I am a firm believer that regardless of what the home situation is like, we as a community, have unlimited potential for saving A LOT of our children, OUR children, I repeat, IT TAKES A VILLAGE, from falling through the cracks. If every single adult were to do even a very small part, we would collectively make an astronomical change for the better for our next generation. But the key is that "EACH ONE [must] REACH ONE". It is not about going about rambling on about how many different things we have done or do in the community, or patting ourselves on the back for whatever we think we deserve accolades for. It is about doing something, however seemingly small, and doing so anonymously, not looking for recognition, but doing it because we feel a responsibility, and because we care about leaving this world better than it was when we entered it, better for future generations, and setting the example for them that we know must be set.

    We must teach not only the children we conceive, but every child we come in contact with that fame and publicity is not what validates us. People become major celebs not because they have done great things or have good character, but because they are MARKETABLE. Or because they are doing something that is MARKETABLE. People who truly make a difference in the world do not get their due recognition until after they are gone. People who live their lives as stars do so because they are lining the pockets of a bunch of bloodsuckers.

    Bottom line: it is the small things we do, in our daily lives, just being the best that we can be in WHATEVER we are doing, naturally setting a positive example to not only the youth around us, but to other adults as well who may be in need of good role models.


    P.S. Heartbeat...you've got mail
     
  8. dbaraka

    dbaraka Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2001
    Messages:
    50
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    VIRGINIA BEACH,VA.
    Ratings:
    +0
    Do you notice football and basketball teams have pep rallies bonfires and award ceremonies?Where are the bonfires pep rallies and award ceremonies for kids on the honor roll and debating team?Why does the college professor make a fraction of what the football and basketball coach earn?Think about it.
     
  9. Heartbeat

    Heartbeat Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Messages:
    1,440
    Likes Received:
    86
    Ratings:
    +86
    dbaraka,
    Your point is well said. Honor role students are not valued as athletes are. There is a book called "Darwin's Athletes" which addresses the issue of devaluing academics in the black culture in exchange for notoriety and hero worship in athletics. The bok gives a historical look at the black community and its relationship to athletics. Sorry I can't think of the author, but he is a prof at the University of Texas at Austin. It is a book that opened my eyes to what one could call a conspiracy.
     
  10. Heartbeat

    Heartbeat Well-Known Member MEMBER

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2001
    Messages:
    1,440
    Likes Received:
    86
    Ratings:
    +86
    I've stepped
    I step
    I've talked
    I talk
    I showed
    I show

    I think 911 has opened up many folks eyes to the fact that this world is just like us....could be gone at any second. I believe you will see more people getting involved if for no other reason than realizing no one is going to help you do it, you must do it yourselves....Time is running out.

    BE
     
Loading...