Hopeful But Hopeless : The Real Playing Fields of African American Men

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Numerous surveys, reports, articles, studies, and documentaries speak of the depressing state of African American males, who some theorists believe are in the process of systematic extinction much like other species across the earth.

Despite these depressing reports, delusional African Americans still claim there will be redemption for these disenfranchised young men, envisioning a utopian society with racial and economic equality or a black nation within America.

These dreams are detrimental.

We should instead use our time and effort to develop the tools for the highest level of survival in the harsh environment where African Americans must reside. African Americans are socially engineered for their current positions in American society. The wealth disparity, family dysfunction, and moral decay plaguing the African American community is not by accident but by design.

Even with the supposed progress made, African American males still face inadequate education, disproportionally high prison sentences, discriminatory hiring practices, and health issues caused by stress and lack of access to  proper nutrition.

What if African American males got ‘on track’ – graduated from college, stayed out of trouble, and fathered their offspring — what would this Utopian society look like? Where would all these virtuous, college-educated men work? Corporate America has limited spaces for ‘brothers.’ Where will these men familiar with Plato, sonnets and calculus go every day to provide for their family?

There have only been 15 African American CEOs in the history of Fortune 500 companies.

According to a corporate diversity survey released last June by the office of Sen. Bob Menendez, a New Jersey Democrat, black men and women account for a mere 4.7% of executive team members in the Fortune 100. Education cannot be blamed for employment disparities.

One study showed that even when blacks and whites have the same level of education, whites have a disproportionately higher level of employment. According to research from Valerie Wilson, an economist at the Economic Policy Institute, “Black Americans with the same level of education level as white Americans, consistently have an unemployment rate that is nearly twice as high.”

Even entrepreneurial ‘brothers’ are systematically denied opportunities, receiving only 1.4 percent of business loans handed out by the Small Business Administration (SBA). ‘ Brothers’ with great ideas have disproportionally less access to capital for the manifestation of the their dreams. It would be nice if there was some support within the community but African Americans are too busy in futile competition with each other, jockeying for the award for ‘best consumer of the year.’

Racism is not verbal. It is systemic, leaving the oppressed oppressed, depressed, and disenfranchised. All these debates, meetings, protests, and talks do not change the system.

African American men will have to work extremely hard — much harder than their fellow citizens with lower doses of melanin. It’s not right, it’s unfair but it is the reality of the environment in which we live. We must develop a proactive approach instead of a reactionary approach as African Americans. We must increase our race consciousness, clearly understand the obstacles we face and implement the best strategies for survival. Too much energy is wasted trying to change the White American power structure that is here to stay. Asking a racist system to change has not worked, nor will it ever work. What will work is implementing preventive measures that will protect you from the traps of our racist system.

One of the tactics that I believe will be most beneficial to African Americans is holding off on procreation until certain things are accomplished. Many may disagree with this tactic but too many of us have children we are unable to nurture and provide a stable environment along with the tools they need to survive in this society. According to the US Census Bureau, 39% of African American children grow up in poverty. Poverty ‘the worst crime against mankind’ breeds malnutrition, illiteracy, physical and psychological problems, along with every other social ill imaginable.

All African American organizations, from fraternities to churches, must provide basic financial literacy classes so we can combat the ‘consumption psychology’ that is enslaving African Americans financially. We must understand purchasing items from white people does not heighten your economic or social status.

As a culture we must read and implement the knowledge we gain from reading, to improve our situation in America. The ‘indoctrination’ received from America’s public schools has proven detrimental to progress of African Americans. Literacy and reading comprehension should be the goal of all African American men.

African Americans should no longer support a media that presents us to the world as dysfunctional, uneducated, lustful, violent-beast. Why would you watch, read, or listen to a media that makes you feel insecure about yourself, teaching you to hate yourself and your history? We must invest in our own media controlling the image that is presented of us to the world. We cannot depend on someone else to accurately portray us in their media.

We need a food revolution, changing our diet. We are unaware of the physical, psychological, and emotional effects of our poor diet. ‘You really are what you eat’. We must really change our lifestyles to began to think clearly and have the energy to survive in America. Yes,  you can eat healthy for cheap.

For your reference, an earlier popular  post on how to eat healthy on a budget: http://livity.info/15-tips-for-being-healthy-on-a-tight-budget/

A reactionary approach to living within American culture has failed the black people of this country. We must be proactive in our endeavors if we want a brighter future for the next generation.

 

 

Written by:  Livity

                        Image:  gypsyborn2013/Pixabay

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