Discussion in 'Black Parenting' started by NNQueen, Apr 14, 2006.
Article source: http://blackgrandparents.com/article_blackyouth.htm
African-Americans in general and in mass just need to make some major decisions about what language do WE want our children to speak? This is a part of a bigger question which is how much do WE see ourselves as part of this country and how much of our focus do we want to give to white anything here including language and customs. We continue to reject what this country offers but, except for isolated spots, we're not replacing it with any other offers so many of our youth end up with nothing.
For example, some Black educated people who speak standard English very well see no harm in defending and even glorifying the speaking of broken English or Ebonics by many of our youth. But as we know, the youth can't use Ebonics to get a job here and yet those same Black people don't teach the youth any other language or skills to make them employable in any other country.
I think it's a BIG asset to a Black person to be as proficient in the white man's language and know as much about every other aspect of white functioning as possible. My father, a man in his 70s, said he got books from the library to learn how to speak and write standard English because he was determined not to let his poor language skills stop him from passing certain civil service and other tests. He said other Black people did the same thing. So he was adamant that his children learn to speak and write standard English well.
If Black people knew this and many other things like this when he was growing up, I don't understand why this has escaped us now.
This article speaks of the responsibilities of our radio personalities. I find this ironic because again we are looking to celebrities for the answwers. I will agree, in essence, of this argument. However, I find it extremely futile in looking to radio "personalities" for solutions.
Why? Because in a large number of URBAN CONTEMPORARY markets the most popular DJ's are BLACK COMEDIANS!
Black COMEDIANS earn their living "shooting the dozens" and even with the pontificating of Steve Harvey, how can anyone take what Black COMEDIANS have to say seriously?
Rickey Smiley, Sinbad and many more have not only the ears of our youth but many of us older listeners as well.
And we wonder what language the youth are speaking? They are speaking the language of their PARENTS who CREATED "hip hop" CULTURE!!
Now, if you are older than me and can't relate to what I just said, i don't expect you to because most likely YOU are NOT part of "hip hop" CULTURE.
A lot what is passed of in Hip hop CULTURE is RETRO....one obvious example, in LA (cant speak for others), is the popularity of CHUCK TAYLOR ALL STARS..especially Black high-tops ( this is the SAME shoe I wore all thoughout junior hs in the early 70s)..
Dickies....Levi 501's...suede Pumas..."apple caps"...sweatbands and head-bands..team jerseys...none of this fashion is new...so let us remember that language includes "body language" which itself includes fashion because among the youth this is what speaks the most....one's FASHION STATEMENT (WHICH IS WHY A LOT OF SCHOOLS HAVE RESORTED TO UNIFORM DRESS CODES).
i think that it's sad that we as blacks will ridicule others who speak correctly and laugh at folks from other lands who speak[broken english]we should be cryin because those folks are speaking two languages and are probobly laughin in our faces,we need to wake up.
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