What makes you a man ?
You’re physically developed, testosterone flowing, man hair growing,Legally you’re a man, illegally you can.Attention from the female population, recognition from your peers,Ego, pride, arrogance, fears!
I’ve decided to reach out to the male population, because of some of the thingsI’ve been forced to witness within my private life and whilst at work of late.Unfortunately, most of them have been negative experiences. I feel that as awoman surrounded by positive black men and boys, it is time to address theones who continue to cause fear to others, add to the negative stereotypes andembarrass our ancestors who fought so hard for the rights and freedoms thathave been bestowed upon us.How many times have you watched television, read a newspaper orparticipated in a conversation and got that sinking feeling? You know the one of embarrassment, disappointment and fear all mixed together. Personally, I’veexperienced that quite a lot recently and mainly when the subject has beenabout young black boys. Don’t get me wrong, there is bad in every community.Evil and illegal activities cannot be isolated to one race, but as a female broughtup to be proud of my colour and roots, I find the mentality and actions of some of these boys particularly disturbing.From ancient civilisations, man has been portrayed as being physicallystronger than his female counterpart. His stature attracted dominance andresponsibilities. His physical make-up gives him the role of protector, provider,survivor, thinker, inventor and intuitive leader. From the bible he was created inGod’s image. Through history he was the tool that created change, progressionand assisted revolution against all opposition. So what has happened? Today the ‘
equate manliness with violence, power, arroganceand greed. Family is no longer about blood but about the man who watches yourback or brings you into the game. The human qualities of love and loyalty,replaced with an unhealthy pull towards material wealth and popularity. Theelderly man who has worked sixty years of his life to provide for his family is nota man, today he is a mug for working so hard. It is worrying to think that someboys use the limp, dress code, drugs and fascination with weapons, to gaininstant money, recognition and control on the streets. These boys fail to realisethat young girls may like the whole bad boy image now, but later when theygrow up, security gains priority over reputation. They thrive on the buzz of violence, the feel of the gun and the respect of their fellow peers.Hence it begs the question, why should I be upset if someone usesnegative connotations or the television continues to associate negativestereotypes with young black boys?