Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Daddy, why is my hair curly and Suzy's straight? What is wrong with my hair?

Is preparing your kids to have a better life than you had worth giving up your (and their)  identity and heritage?

This is a deep question huh?

This topic came up today at work. I know a dude that was married to a White Woman, he is recently divorced. He has 2 kids from this woman. He lives in a predominantly White community in a predominantly white county. His kids do not have any interaction with any kids that look like them or with any kids who come from a mixed racial background. So basically, in my opinion, his kids are going to grow up only knowing one side of their background, their mother's.

The guy I was talking to today is an older Puerto Rican dude. He is married to a white woman and has a daughter in college. He also raised his daughter away from people that looked like her. According to him, his daughter has never had a Puerto Rican boyfriend and she does not speak Spanish. He said he moved out to the hills so that his daughter would have a chance to be productive in today's society. He said that the only way that his daughter would succeed in today's world is if he took her totally out of a minority setting and placed her in a setting with more "productive(white) folks".

I totally disagree with both of these gentlemen  and here's why.

These children are growing up with a view of the world that is not centered on reality. I understand that in today's "post racial" world, there are not supposed to be any color barriers.


These kids are growing up with an attitude that their color don't matter because they are not being exposed to people that look like them.

They are growing up naive.

Now don't get me wrong. I want to be seen as a MAN, before I am seen as a BLACK MAN. I do not judge people because of their skin color, but I still SEE their skin color.

I SEE color. Yeah I said it. And I know that people see mine. But I understand that my color or my friends brown color or anyone white does not dictate who we are.

Our actions do.

In my opinion where a person grows up does not matter, as long as the Parents do what Parents are supposed to do. Parents dictate how their kids are going to turn out. A strong family background with a strong sense of heritage and family traditions are what a child needs to be productive in any society.

This notion that minorities have to move out to the hills with the white folks just so their kids will have a shot of achieving the "American Dream", is bullshit.

They are forgetting that White People have the same problems that we do. Neighborhoods are only as good as the people living in them.
Just because Tyrone and Tameka or Jose and Consuela buy a million dollar house out in Fairy Never Land and send their kids to a private boarding school, does not guarantee  that their kids will be productive.

A rich Black man will still be called a nigga by a "productive" White person if that "productive" White person feels threatened.
A rich Puerto Rican will still be called a wetback by that same White Person if that White person feels that said Puerto Rican is getting "uppidity".

It is the American way.
I don't like it, but I understand.

My two friends do not. I believe that they have the best of intentions for their kids because they are good men and parents.


Denying their children the chance to be associated with kids that look like them,comb their hair like them and whose parents look like them is just plain stupid and selfish.

In order for a society to be really color blind, every color has to be represented.
In my opinion these kids are going to turn out not understanding who and what they are.

But these dudes have a right to raise their families the way they want to.

That is also the American way.


Kit (Keep It Trill) said...

"Denying their children the chance to be associated with kids that look like them, comb their hair like them and whose parents look like them is just plain stupid and selfish. In order for a society to be really color blind, every color has to be represented."

Well said.

saint james said...

May be on some level what these men meant is that they felt they needed to move their children from the pathologies that seem to be so prevalent in communities of color or in the urban center (read; hood). I am black and native american (documented not mere myth)and I chose to remove my child from the METCO system here in Boston because the cons outweighed the pros in the voluntary bussing of my child to a white neighborhood for a "better" education. It wasn't worth her angst and identity issues with her peers and teachers not to mention the horrible stereotypes of her and her family. We simply traded one group of issues for another.
The likelihood of violence against your child(ren) is more likely in the black community than in the fairy land, I am very sad to say. It seems that education in the many urban environments has taken a back seat to sports, entertainment, thugging and antisocial behavior. I know it is not true across the board but it a reality for many parents that want to ensure success for their children.

Talia said...

This topic has been at the top of a few discussions I've had with a few of my lady friends. I have recently made the choice to stop putting chemicals in my hair. I choose to keep it the way it was when I was created.
BUT I digress.. The main point is IGNORANCE begins from a lack of exposure to different things,people, environments and knowledge. How can the be better off by denying them an opportunity to be exposed