black man, get on your job...

this is painful to read...yet, it needs to be said.

it's hard to even know where to begin, but this says more than almost the entire article put together: "He sold marijuana for his parents, he said, left school in the sixth grade and later dealt heroin and cocaine."


don't get me wrong, i'm not surprised. but...we need to do better than this.

there is a recognition that many of these things are generational, and they're hitting our men harder than us.

so why aren't we keeping pace, so to speak?

my theory is that a lot of women are going to be motivated to get themselves together for one reason or another. usually it begins with having a child to raise & not having time for any foolishness. plus there are plenty of programs in place for disadvantaged mothers.

where do men get that kind of motivation? what pushes them to succeed/take responsibility?

i also think that dysfunctional childhoods affect men in extremely different ways. women/girls may not function well in, say, interpersonal relationships when coming from dysfunction, but they will often--at a minimum--be able to "get their life right" and support themselves. hell, any woman with a decent enough figure and a passable face can be a stripper, for instance. not the most desirable option, but it won't land you in jail.

on the other hand, little boys often wind up retreating into themselves, taking out their anger physically and in other confrontational ways that, as an adult, can lead to jail time or worse.

another excerpt:

According to census data, there are about five million black men ages 20 to 39 in the United States.

Terrible schools, absent parents, racism, the decline in blue collar jobs and a subculture that glorifies swagger over work have all been cited as causes of the deepening ruin of black youths. Scholars — and the young men themselves — agree that all of these issues must be addressed…

All the negative trends are associated with poor schooling, studies have shown, and progress has been slight in recent years... Closer studies reveal that in inner cities across the country, more than half of all black men still do not finish high school, said Gary Orfield, an education expert at Harvard and editor of "Dropouts in America" (Harvard Education Press, 2004).

"We're pumping out boys with no honest alternative," Mr. Orfield said in an interview, "and of course their neighborhoods offer many other alternatives."
Dropout rates for Hispanic youths are as bad or worse but are not associated with nearly as much unemployment or crime, the data show.

obviously there are no "magic bullet" solutions here.

but we have to do something to start saving our sons.

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