I have been knee deep in grading, which in turn explains why I have been been light with my posting this week. Things will be back to normal next week.
Black men are the envy of the world, pathologized, perpetually in crisis and at risk, faced with binary life choices of slanging crack rock or having a wicked jump shot, lacking role models, one is President of the United States, and millions are inmates.
I was forwarded this documentary last week and thought it worthy of sharing with you all. In my circles of friends and colleagues we often talk about "the lessons of manhood," and how young black men are not learning them. However, I always offer the qualifier that this country is in a cultural crisis--intellectually, morally, philosophically, financially, and politically--such that pants sagging troglodytes, baby daddies, and baby mamas all flow from the same feted waters as robber baron capitalists, Sarah Palin, Tea Party white nationalists, and shows like Jersey Shore and the various "Housewives from whatever place
Detroit is a much studied and discussed city. It is a model of deindustrialization and an inverted window into the future that is the opposite of The Jetsons. Ironically, during the late 1960s and 1970s Detroit was in fact the city of tomorrow...but most folks simply didn't realize it at the time.
She is the home of Robocop, a place where both the social contract and social compact have been broken, a community that can't afford to bury its dead, and where private security guards are now employed as one of America's formerly great cities is now a demilitarized zone. In all, for most of Detroit's residents it most certainly ain't halftime. This is doubly true for Detroit's young black men.
The documentary Black Nation examines the controversial Church of the Black Madonna and its efforts to save the young black men of Detroit. After watching the film, I was left wondering are things truly this dire? And channeling Cornel West, how did black people become cast as a problem people, as opposed to a people where some of us, like any other group, may have problems?