Black People : SHOULD BLACK WOMEN DEMAND MORE FROM BLACK MEN?

Discussion in 'Black People Open Forum' started by Bisabee, May 31, 2006.

  1. Bisabee

    Bisabee Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    This is an article that provokes a lot of thought.

    What would happen if Black women DEMANDED more from Black men? Would lots more Black men jump ship and cross over? It also seems that so many Black men (here, especially) are already complaining about what Black women are asking for until I can't imagine what they'd do if we asked for more. I, personally, already demand that a man bring enough to the relationship because I know I won't be content with less than I need. Obviously some sistas are NOT doing that. I think that in the long run, it would mean a great improvement in the men if the majority of Black women demanded more.

    What do y'all think?

    **********************************************


    Cosby's challenge fell shortHe should have told black women to demand help from black men in saving their community.
    By Leonard Pitts Jr.


    For some of us, it is the easiest thing in the world to idealize black women. To romanticize them, sentimentalize them.

    Consider Legends Ball, last week's TV special produced by that uber black woman, Oprah Winfrey. I seldom watch Winfrey, but her salute to trailblazing black women kept me rooted. There was something soul-settling in seeing all those sisters, daughters, mothers - Gladys Knight, Maya Angelou, Cicely Tyson, Dorothy Height, Leontyne Price and more - gather in their finery to celebrate and be celebrated.

    Or, consider a chat I had earlier this month with a group of academics and health-care professionals about the fact that black women have among the lowest suicide rates in the country - one-third that of white women, according to a 2003 University of North Carolina study. Asked why, I began to wax rhapsodic about the grounding that spirituality gives, the grace that hardship brings, and that serene majesty that often settles in on black women of a certain age.

    Point being, black women are the strength and succor of their community. They are the last line of defense.

    That's why there's something heartbreaking in what Bill Cosby recently told 500 of them, the graduating class of Spelman College, a historically black women's college in Atlanta. In his address, Cosby advised the young women that they will have to assume sole responsibility for the salvation and uplift of the black community because their men, by and large, have opted out.

    As quoted by the Palm Beach Post, he said, "You young women have to know it is time for you to take charge."

    The stark figures on incarceration and education that support Cosby are, of course, so well known as to defy repetition. And a 2003 Newsweek report tells us that increasingly, black women of education and achievement are having a hard time finding similarly situated black men.

    Full disclosure: Cosby provided a blurb for the cover of my book, Becoming Dad, which is being reissued in June. The book makes many of the same points he's been making in recent years, so it should come as no surprise that I agree with him here. But I have a caveat:

    There is nothing new about women picking up the slack for men. We take it for granted that they will do this, that they will raise the children, tend the house, anchor the community, when the men are jailed or killed or simply disinterested.

    So Cosby simply told those women what, surely, they already know. And even though it was truth, it occurs to me that it's truth that might more productively be addressed to black men themselves.

    Even iron, my father liked to say, wears out. And if iron can get tired, maybe even idealized, sentimentalized, romanticized black women can. Maybe sisters can get tired of forgiving brothers, daughters tired of making excuses for fathers, mothers tired of burying sons. And maybe, instead of telling them to be ready to shoulder the burden, Cosby should have told them to demand that men share it.

    Maybe black women should begin to require one thing of black men: that they be better. Better than the systemic racism of the criminal injustice system, better than all the internalized lies of inherent inferiority. Better, in the way women have long had to be.

    It is neither fair nor pragmatic to ask black women to save black America. We all need to save it, or else stand by and watch as that last line is crossed.


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    Leonard Pitts Jr. ([email protected]) is a Miami Herald columnist.





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  2. Sefirot

    Sefirot Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    A woman can only provide perspective for a man to move. She doesn't have the power to move him.
    In the event that she does, she will only appreciate him for so long.
    Either that, or he will only be moved and succumb to such demands for so long before he reverts to acting as he wills.
    A woman deciding to only receive that which she expects is more practical and realistic.
    That is, not settling for less.

    *edit* I am beginning to subscribe to the belief that THIS Bill Cosby is a clone.
    The Bill I grew up on would never even think such a thought.
    And I know absolutely no Q who would.
     
  3. Destee

    Destee destee.com STAFF

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    Sister Bisabee ... thanks for sharing.

    Unfortunately, no one can demand or make another do what they don't wanna do.

    Black Men must collectively recognize what is needed, and encourage each other in that.

    If women could make them do, they'd already be doing.

    :heart:

    Destee
     
  4. Isaiah

    Isaiah Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    That was good stuff - gotta admit it...

    So, before folks go off on their tangent against Cosby, consider that I wrote a thread here 2 years ago asking Black Women to Step up to the plate, and I wasn't prompted by ole Bill... I was prompted by what I SEE of African men... If it's not pleasing to me, then you can only imagine how our sisters feel... Like trapped in a nightmare of choosing between some of us, and NOTHING - because that is what I believe most African women would choose, US or NOTHING...

    What I mean is that sisters TALK about getting with other men or other ethnicities, brothers gone ahead and DO IT... We do a lot of talking about "they aint ish", and then WE go about tryna prove it... I think we need to look in our mirrors and ask ourselves, WHO in heck we were talking about, them or ourselves??? Let me make myself clear, here... I am not talking about brothers who post to Destees, nor those brothers who are handling their business on a daily, monthly, yearly... I am talking about the multitudes of cats whom we make entirely too many excuses for... If they were all the men we say they are, they wouldn't need nobody's exuscues for them... If you got to make excuses for somebody, then they aint got their stuff together, and making excuses for them don't help them in that process...

    Yes, I agree with brother Pitts... Sisters must DEMAND MORE FROM US - even those of us who seemingly got it together... Black Women should live up to what we say about them, and NEVER be satisfied...

    Oh, and I forgot something - forgive me... WE, as African Men must DEMAND more from our brothers, TOO! Aint nothing like some peer pressure to get a human being motivated... Sisters should not have to do the motivating all by themselves - like they've been doing forever... Brothers Need to Step to the plate in these terrible times, too...


    Peace!
    Isaiah
     
  5. jamesfrmphilly

    jamesfrmphilly going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    the implication is that black women are in some superior position and black men are in an inferior one.
    this is yet another "divide and conquer" strategy.

    sisters need to make demands of themselves.
    find their own power.

    men need to do the same.

    we are all in this thing together.
     
  6. spicybrown

    spicybrown Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    Great Topic......Long Overdue.

    With Bill Cosby's recent comments; he is enabling irresponsible Black male behavior. He is promoting Black matriarchy. I wonder; has he addressed Black men on a personal level?

    Bisabee, it seems we would have to start off with a clean slate (raising a whole generation of males accurately). I'm no expert, but I believe men are shiftless, in a sense that what you see is what you get. Period. Yes, SOME Black men have/will jumped ship when confronted about ill behavior in relationships; they are the weak ones. I notice many Black men percieve a demand to change as a proverbial slap in the face. I am the type to suggest more, not demand, because I can't fathom the thought of begging a man to do right by me. Been there done that:nono: If things don't work out, and he is not willing to compromise. I would rather leave. I don't have time to re-raise a grown man. I had 1 child for a reason.

    Many Sister's are just letting things ride, because they fear losing their loved one or they are over-burdened with everyday life. Some Brothers know this and take full advantage of it. I am not one of those Sisters. I love my man with ALL my heart, but I decided to speak up and "tough it out". My s/o started slacking, and I told him he had to go(didn't want to do that) until he had his act together 100%, and if he couldn't come correct, he can spread his wings and soar, respectfully. But at least I have peace, and he's ironing his issues out. I see a new leaf turning over, but I just don't understand how someone can toy around with reality, and put a loved one through unnecessary stress. I enjoy peace of mind.:sand:
     
  7. jamesfrmphilly

    jamesfrmphilly going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    if that is what you believe, your prophecy will be fulfilled.
     
  8. NNQueen

    NNQueen going above and beyond PREMIUM MEMBER

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    It makes me tired these days to hear that Black women are the staple in the Black community while the Black man is portrayed as a slouch and slacker. *sigh*

    At the risk of sounding superfulous, this is absolute nonsense and places an undue burden and hardship on Black men and Black women, as far as I'm concerned. Not taking anything away from my warrior sisters and all that she has come through and put up with, but in many instances, she didn't accomplish community building and family building alone. What is it about Black men that some people just don't like or can't find anything positive in them to support? Why do some people keep trying to make Black men the scurge of the earth and the poster child for "rotten, no good men"? *smh*

    Personally, I'd much rather not listen to people like Bill Cosby and Oprah talk about Black people in general because they can't speak for all of us. They just happen to be two Black people who found a way to make a lot of money and white people use them as examples of "good" negroes--and they let them. I'm glad that Oprah sees fit to uplift other Black women. Great! And Bill, if you're gonna talk about what Black folk need to be doing, just make sure that you are practicing what you preach and I don't mean simply understanding how to make money.

    No, I don't feel the need to DEMAND more from Black men. What if Black men felt the same way about Black women? Where would all the Black babies come from? Work together while building loving relationships at the same time.

    As a Black woman wanting and desiring to spend my life with a Black man, I choose to join ranks with those among them who want to be the best they can be and I will try to help him any way that I can. It starts in the womb when you've become the type of woman that a Black man would be proud to want and be with, not when they're grown and set in their ways.

    Slackers come in all races, not just Black. Some men will want to "act" right and some won't. It's important to know the difference. I'm tired of people making it sound as though ALL Black men are less than nothing and don't deserve the attention of a Black woman unless she can tick off her checklist certain qualities that he "should" have to please her.

    We should work with our brothers and still show them love at the same time. Not work against them and independently. If I'm going to make any demands, I'd better make darn sure I'm living up to the same standards as my demands.
     
  9. spicybrown

    spicybrown Well-Known Member MEMBER

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    The WHOLE comment makes a world of a difference. Pay close attention, a few other people in this thread believe so too, including A MAN.

    Brother Sefirot stated:

    No disrespect intended.
     
  10. Bisabee

    Bisabee Well-Known Member MEMBER

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