There was a period of time when women were not truly appreciated. They were portrayed as child bearers, built-in domestics, sex objects and generally second-class citizens. They were definitely viewed as not equal to men. The descendants of the slave masters sought to put a further divide between the Black men and Black women by design; they did everything to exaggerate the perceived difference between them by increasing a sense of disrespect for each other. The truth is that they were generally effective for a period of time, much too long. However, another example of the power and goodness of God occurred–women now occupy a multitude of roles as mothers, breadwinners, educators, nurses, disciplinarians, accountants, homeowners, man’s partner, man’s equal and sometimes man’s superior. An untold number of Black women have done better than good. In fact, they have done exceptionally well, and Black men are truly proud of them.
This week’s column originated because, for the last few weeks, Black women have been the deserving recipients of tremendous positive press coverage. I was in attendance at a meeting and several Black men were suspect of the positive coverage. They were saying, “They are at it again, seeking to divide us once more.” But being completely honest some of the brothers are resentful.
I have been personally blessed by being in a household of successful women. Daddy had gone to his heavenly home and I was the man in his home with Mama, wife and three daughters. We as Black men should not have a jealous bone in our bodies, but should walk around with our chest struck out with an immense sense of pride.
I would hope the men would come together and have more events that would highlight the positive actions and accomplishments of Black men. It could be a unique program by Black men funding 100 percent of the cost. It is understandable that some programs would not be difficult without seeking funds from the foundations and corporations, but it has always been my contention that we as men can do much more for ourselves than we do. Those who know me can testify that all of my life I have advocated that Black men have an obligation to serve as positive role models to those who call them son, husband, daddy, brother, friend and neighbor. It is long overdue for Black men to stand and be counted.
(Louis “Hop” Kendrick is a contributor to the New Pittsburgh Courier.)
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