Save the Whales, Males, Females…


The following article “Why Men Are In Trouble” motivated me to write this blog:

http://www.cnn.com/2011/10/04/opinion/bennett-men-in-trouble/index.html

It was a very disturbing article for many reasons.  Men don’t spend time with their families and children, they don’t go to church and they play a lot of video games.  Women are graduating at three times the rate of men, climbing the corporate ladder faster, and continue to be faithful to church attendance and raising their children as single-parents.

Honestly, I do not see much to celebrate.  I do not want to take away from the accomplishments of women and all that we have accomplished, but it does not feel like a victory when our fathers, uncles, brothers, babies’ fathers, and male cousins seem to be doing so poorly.  Does male’s success indirectly mean female’s failure and does female’s success indirectly mean male’s failure?  Is it possible for both groups to succeed simultaneously?

In the black community the emphasis has been on saving the black male.  We need men in the church.  We need men in the homes.  We need men in the schools.  We need better fathers.  We need male mentors.  Yet, this article is not racially specific which leads me to think that the problem that we see in the black community is just a microcosm of a much larger problem in America.

And the problem in America that we are seeing with male involvement in the family, education, and the job sector has nothing to do with the fact that women are getting more degrees.  It has everything to do with the breakdown of the American family.

Just turn your television on and check out the family shows.  That’s right. They are all on “Nick At Night”.  The 8:00 p.m. hour is no longer centered around The Cosby Show, Family Matters, Family Ties, Full House, The Wonder Years, Married with Children, Growing Pains, or Roseanne.  The 8:00 p.m. hour on television today is all about reality shows, winning a million dollars, knocking yourself out on an obstacle course, and eliminating the next bachelor or bachelorette.

I am not suggesting that all of the family shows of the past were perfect, but there were some common denominators.  These shows had a strong male father character, a strong female mother character, and the children for the most part showed honor and respect to their parents.  In other words we had some type of image of what it meant to be a father, mother, provider, and nurturer.

What kind of images does television portray today?  The number one show  for the past couple of years was Two And a Half Men?  Really? Two men who cannot keep steady relationships, and a young boy who will learn from these two men who never seem to go to work, have meaningless sex, and live off their rich mother.  Thank you sitcom networks.  This is exactly what we need to save our males…

3 Comments on “Save the Whales, Males, Females…”

  1. You have really stepped into an area that is a concern for me. I am currently working on a blog article of my own about a very similar topic. As a successful, Christian, African-American man, I often feel alone in this world whether at church, work or while perusing the shelves in Barnes & Nobles. Last year as I watched the first run of “Black Girls Rock,” I asked myself, “What do black men do?” This inspires me to finish my article, which I will share soon. I think it is great to have all the wonder women doing all the things they do but if we don’t have any supermen, I think we face a hopeless future.

  2. Like Percevial I’ve developed an interest in the issue with men and their demise. having two sons and, being a part of a transitional generation at the age of 38, seeing this demise first hand has sparked me to “do something”. I’m using my time with my sons as as an opportunity to effect change in their life and the lives of their friends. Especially the ones without a strong father figure in their life. Being aware of the trends and the problems that arise as a result, I can combat them with teaching moments that instill proper approaches, good methods, best practices and right beliefs. I’m praying for an avenue to do more.

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