“Black Families, Black Men” takes a courageous look at the Black “family.”
Sounding like a born-again social conservative, president Lyndon B. Johnson stepped to the podium and made this stirring pronouncement: â€œWhen the family collapses, it is the children that are usually damaged. When it happens on a massive scale, the community itself is crippled.â€
A few months later the Moynihan Report came out. Despite its commonsense focus on strengthening the Black family, civil rights leaders raised a stink that Mr. Moynihan was trying to â€œblame the victim.â€ Floyd McKissick, director of the Congress of Racial Equality, insisted, â€œItâ€™s the damn system that needs changing.â€
So the architects of the Great Society not only set out to ignore the formative role of the Black family â€“ they plotted to make things worse.
They instituted programs withÂ men-stay-away names like â€œWomen, Infants, and Children.â€ They enacted Medicaid in 1965 that imposed eligibility tests slighting non-custodial parents (read â€œfathersâ€).
Then the social do-gooders delivered the knock-out blow: the Aid to Families with Dependent Children program. AFDC had its infamous â€œman-out-of-the-houseâ€ rule that withheld benefits if the primary breadwinner (again, read â€œfatherâ€) resided in the house.
Sociologist Andrew Billingsley has traced the historical lifeline of the Black family. In 1890 the number of intact Black families with fathers and mothers at home was 80%. Over the next seven decades through 1960, that figure held remarkably constant.
But once the Great Society programs were put in place, the African-American family went into a tailspin.
When the number-crunchers tallied up the results from the 1970 decennial census, they couldnâ€™t believe their eyes â€“ the number of intact Black families had fallen to 64%.
For the next 20 years two-parent families continued their free-fall, reaching a rock-bottom 38% in 1990. And most of the remaining intact families were concentrated in the Black middle class. In the inner city, the traditional Black family had essentially ceased to exist.
So forced to compete with a government welfare program, poor Black men had suddenly found themselves persona non grata in their own homes. Like an unwelcome houseguest, Uncle Sam had moved in, unpacked his bags, and made himself a surrogate husband.
What two World Wars and the Great Depression were unable to do, the Great Society accomplished in only 25 years.
With the Black family now in shambles, no amount of federal money could fix the problem. In 1965, 21% of all American children under the age of 18 lived in poverty. Thirty years and billions of welfare dollars later, the number of American children living in poverty was â€“ 21%.
Of course the Leftists refuse to admit the obvious failures of the Great Society. And is their habit, they tell the exact opposite of the truth.
Robert Hill of the Urban League once spun this whopper: â€œResearch studies have revealed that many one-parent families are more intact or cohesive than many two-parent families.â€ Excuse me Mr. Hill, when millions of poor teenage girls are having out-of-wedlock births, how does that fit into your concept of â€œintactâ€ and â€œcohesiveâ€?
But thereâ€™s a deeper reason for the Leftist cover-up.
Karl Marx argued that economic realities determine social conditions. According to that formulation, if you pump money into a community, social indicators will automatically improve. But the Great Society proved the opposite â€“ squander money on programs that weaken social structures, and life becomes unbearably squalid.”
Yes, indeed, the American welfare program was originally designed to assist the “deserving” poor with the necessities of life. It was meant to be doled out in limited circumstances, to assist responsible, formerly productive citizens till they got back on their own feet.
It was not meant to replace work, responsibilty or the impetus for marriage.
Illegitimacy has become rampant as the government subsidizes teen age girls who have babies!
According to theÂ Centers for Disease Control and Prevention when this war on poverty program was initiated, less than 8% of Americans were born out of wedlock. The stats are now closer to 35%.
You do the Math.
Enabling poor people to become self sufficient is ultimatelyÂ healthier and more compassionate in the long run , than continually offering government freebies and insulting “hand-outs”.
Some, including Feminist organizations romanticize the “one woman household.”
The fact is that the effects of absentee fathers on allâ€“ including black families and black communitiesâ€“ are dramatic. With single mothers, either on welfare or working multiple jobs or working while attending college,Â the childrenÂ are the ones left to fend for themselves after school. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to deduce that many become involved with drugs and crime.
And what of feelings of abandonment?..Do Liberals not think children have them? Imagine waiting for the sporadic phone call from dad on Christmas eve when your’e five years old.
Unstable home lives and low self-esteem result from these feelings oftentimes, which contribute to many black children’s struggles in school as well.
And what of relationships between young black men and women,where there are no role models? Family disintegration has contributed to escalating disrespect and even animosity between young black men and women.
Â Look no further than current rap songs and music videos which areÂ notoriously misogynistic and violent toward women. Where did this blatant lack of respect and anger toward women originate?
And if knowing that nearly a third of black males will end up in prison at some point during their lifetime, isn’t a wake up call- I don’t know what is. Something’s not working.
The so called “War on Poverty” has proved to be an abysmal failure.
And whether some wish to admit this or not:
A dad does make a difference.
As seen at Woman Honor Thyself