Yes, statistics show that the black family is in trouble. Statistics also show that single black women are heads of household and raising children alone, more than any other race. 70 percent of African-American families are headed by a single woman, either never married or divorced. I know. I'm one of them. I chose to stay single and pregnant over being miserably married.
But, in my world, I feel the norm for the African-American community is to be married with kids. How could the media miss that? As I was growing up, I knew many married couples; happy, loving couples and raising happy, loving families--like The Jacksons, The Chandlers, The Thompsons...not to mention my Grand-parents, and my Great-Uncles and Aunts. Granted, the difference may be that my parents generation and those before them married, and stayed married. But the generations that followed either never married, or married, divorced, and remarried or remained single. But, even that is not the point.
The point is that African-Americans are looked upon as being different. We have always been ostracized and patronized and all other -ized in between... What I'm getting at is that America and the rest of the world thinks that black folks do not respect the institution of marriage nor uphold the family and family values. Truth be told, I believe family values originated in the black community. I know black men who love and respect their wives, who support and nurture their children, and are involved in their communities. Not all black men are walking around with their pants hanging low, involved in drug dealing, gambling or other illegal activities. I know hard working men, at General Motors, at Sealy Mattress, at McDonalds and Church's Chicken even. Military men, Men who pastor churches, mentor boys without fathers at home, and feed the hungry and homeless. Good, God-fearing men. They don't have a lot of money, but they love God, family and country.
And Black women. We always get the short end of the stick. We're not all Hottentot, child support seeking, gold-diggers looking for the next rap video in which to star. We work hard, too--loving our good Black men, raising children, biological or not--working at AT&T, Lockheed, Taco Bell or Popeye's chicken. We serve in the local church, mentor young girls, and volunteer to make our communities better. We are God-fearing women who respect our Black men as heads of household, protectors, and leaders. We may not have all that we want, but we sure know how to appreciate what we have.
A word to the media--PAY ATTENTION: Black woman speaking here. Stop looking at African-Americans as an uncouth race of people. We love each other--hard. Yes, as a people we have serious problems. But look at our history. We've always been a people who place God first, family next and job third. That's been our m.o. for hundreds of years now. And if you have need, which you must, here are some examples of loving Black couples--
Dr. and Mrs. Martin L. King, Jr.
and don't forget--Malcolm X and Betty Shabazz, Magic and Cookie Johnson, and of course Barack and Michelle Obama!! These couples exemplify Black Love at it's finest. And they are...