Civil War - A Letter From the Front No. 3

by Gap Tooth Brotha

The Casualties of War

In our zeal to inflect damage on each other, we have totally ignored the damage we have inflected on our most valued resource - our children. Since we treat our relationships with an abundance of indifference and distaste, we now hold the distinction of having the majority of our homes headed by single mothers. Our children are now raised not understanding what constitutes a successful relationship. What they do understand is physical and verbal abuse, infidelity, and abandonment.

Because of this war, the brothas verses the sistahs, we have raised a generation of black male children whose idea of a relationship is hold a little conversation (mack or game), have sex (fuckin’), and move on to the next girl (bitch). Pimpin’ is the name of the game. Our sons have no idea on how to treat our daughters; acting on our examples; they beat, curse, and mistreat our daughters as early as middle school. When you try to enlighten them on the proper way to treat our daughters you are met with defiance (“Man, you got to show these bitches what’s up!”). Worse yet, our daughters self esteem and self worth is so low that this behavior is accepted as normal and they accept this mistreatment, believing this is how relationships should be (I thought he loved me!).

Brothas collecting notches representing how many women they’ve slept with doesn’t designate manhood. On the contrary collecting notches reinforces the stereotype that New York United States Senator Patrick Moynihan projected that brothas are sex machines, sperm donors, dangerous, and ignorant.

Sistahs you must hold brothas to a higher standard. They get away with this disturbing behavior because you let them. When you raise the bar on what is acceptable and what isn’t, brothas will either meet the standard or fail. Also, by raising the standard you set an example that will help our daughters understand what is acceptable and what isn’t.

This vicious cycle of single mothers, absentee fathers, and the stupid games we play must be broken. To strengthen our community we must show our children greater examples of affection, love, kindness, and respect. Every generation improves on the accomplishments of the past generation.

It is our responsibility to raise our children in a way that will help them succeed in a world, which views them as liabilities. The success of the African American community hinges on the strength of our families. As our families continue to collapse and become more fragmented, so has the cohesiveness and moral values, which has guided us through 400 years of oppression.

Medical Specialist I

Civil War - A Letter From the Front No. 3 by Gap Tooth Brotha

© Copyright 1999. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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