I'm Raising Money for Organizations Fighting Ebola in Liberia.





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How 20 Somethings can "Get Out"- No, You Probably Shouldn't Let Your Stepfather Harvest Your Eggs

Welcome to the conclusion of 20 Something's Week. We'll have to do a 60 Somethings Week as well because that would probably be a hoot  - turning the blog over to readers in their 60s.  We kicked off this week in response to 20 Somethings trying to figure out how to be empowered. On Wednesday I talked about building your own support network.  Today I'm going to talk about how to get disentangled from dysfunctional and destructive environments. This came up in last week's comments thread.

I know things are confusing in this part of the blogoshpere, afterall, you've had people present themselves as your very own personal Empowerment Messiah, yet after reading their blogs for years, you're pretty much in the same place and if you question these Empowerment Messiahs about why their sketchy adivice isn't working- they scream "Get out of Blackistan!"  Or they call you a “race woman” or a “Mammy” or a saboteur.

Life is not a piece of Ikea furniture. You can't  dump all of your disjointed pieces on the ground and expect someone to hand you a set of directions to figure out how to put it together. You ultimately are in charge of your own life.  Being a grownup means making difficult decisions.

Over at Dear Prudence, a college student writes in asking for advice because her mother and step-father are pressuring her to let them harvest her eggs so they can have a child.  She lives with them and is financially dependent on them. She is also receiving pressure from other family members who are telling her that if she doesn't give up her eggs, she is destroying her mother's marriage because her mother won't be able to have a child with her current husband. Its a pretty good example of familial dysfunction.

Now my grandmother is calling me a "home-wrecker," saying that my mother and stepfather will get divorced if they're incapable of having a child. My family refuses to go to a donor outside the family because it wouldn't be "their" child, and they say my genes are 50 percent from my mother. They also won’t consider adoption because they say "those kids are disgusting and messed up." They plan on having my eggs harvested and raising my child as their own. I am a university student who lives at home, though lately I have been crashing on friends' couches in order to avoid going home because the situation has gone from hard to ridiculous. My family has been controlling and emotionally and verbally abusive all my life, and until recently I didn't realize that normal families aren't like this. I have no way to escape because I can't afford to move out—I have a job that doesn't pay that well, and I'm also a full-time student. What can I do? Dear Prudence

Unlike some empowerment bloggers who scream at the top of their lungs to LEAVE dysfunctional and destructive environments, Prudence actually gives very detailed advice about how this girl can get out of this situation. I would go so far as to say that this is some of the most specific advice that I've seen Prudence provide recently and I think it is applicable to our current discussion about people who tell you that your life sucks in general, you're in danger, you need to get out, but omit any details on how to do that.

1.Sometimes other people’s problems are other people’s problems. A great skill is to master letting other people’s problems remain THEIR problems. You don’t need to “fix” anything. Sometimes you just need to watch...from a distance.

2. Take an honest and brutal assessment of your resources. All of them. You've been brainwashed into thinking that NOTHING good can come from an environment of people who look like you. However, you probably have access to far more resources than you've realized. Even if someone can't help you directly, they may be able to direct you to someone who is able to help.

3. Ask for PROFESSIONAL help. If you're a college student, there are DOZENS of middle aged woman and men who have budgets allocated to help you become a well-rounded productive citizen. Your goal should be to seek those people out and make them earn their salary. The money's sitting there, staff meetings are held about what to do with that money. If it isn't used, sometimes they lose it OR it goes into the pot for bonuses.

4.Once you seek out help, when a disinterested third party offers you advice, be willing to consider trying it. You might think it will work, but you never know. Something I started doing last year was taking people's advice on low risk issues based merely on the fact that they'd been sucessful. I didn't analyze it or run scenarios, i just did what they told me to do and trusted them. Almost 99% of the time they were right. My racing coach is the best example. I just made the decision to believe that after a decade of coaching she knew what she was doing. I remember the first time she told me to keep running through a walk break over a freeway overpass and I thought my chest was going to explode. I ignored my "you're gonna die!"

5.Expect and prepare for sacrifice.

6. When it comes to your own self defense, don’t substitute someone else’s judgement for your own. Not even your mother.  People don’t like conflict or change. They would rather you suffer in silence to make them feel more comfortable.

Again, your life isn't a box of Jiffy Cornbread mix, following someone else's instructions will never meet your specific needs, but they are a good jumping off point.

Enjoy your 20s. Take LOT's of non-lethal risks and a few potentially legal risks ( swimming with stingrays, skydiving, driving cross country surviving on Mountain Dew, running with the bulls.).  You're not supposed to have it all figured out. That's part of the fun. And if you make it out, you and your friends are goign to have an amazing time in your 30s laughing at all the things you overcame in your 20s


I Have a Dream That 20 Something Black Women Don't Have to Give Up Their Blackness to be "Empowered"

"The black community is dead and has been for decades!" -- BWE Battle Cry!

One of the great byproducts of last week's bizzare BWE blogger attack on WAOD is that some of you felt safe to question anti-Black woman BWE propaganda in an open forum.

 Sugarcakes left the following message on our post from last Wednesday. She’s a 20 something Black woman:


Hey, I'm new to this forum. I'm a black woman in my mid 20s and I've been following the BWE movement for two years.

When I first discovered the BWE movement I thought I found home because there were so many other like minded black women who were going through the exact same struggles as I. I seriously thought I was the only woman of color suffering the abuse in the black community but obviously other women were just being quiet about it.

[quote]BUT these problems are IN NO WAY the whole BC, plus the "exit" "solution" is the least realistic, most unlikely and most ridiculous conclusion to come to. To exit or escape obviously means that you have some place to "escape" TO - somewhere to go, per se; some community willing to take you in.[/quote]

This is the biggest obstacle I face with the BWE movement as well. The only way to escape the BC is by escaping your blackness, and that just isn't possible. Wherever you go, we are still Black, and will still be treated accordingly.

I went off to college, and was the only minority in many of my classes and had a very difficult time navigating the other world. Many white women were very cautious around me, and were not willing to let me into their social circle. Perhaps they saw me as a threat? it was incredibly hard. So when most of the BWE sites suggest black women to leave, I get a little uneasy because of the lack of acceptance I faced inside and outside the black community. Sugarcakes


Thank you Sugarcakes for defining the central problem in the Titanic Empowerment Theory -> Jump in to the iceberg filled waters surrounding a sinking ship instead of taking an available life raft because it is being steered by a Black person.  They always present escape as having one of two options, jump into ice cold water and freeze to death or stay on the sinking ship - either way, you eventually drown. they never consider option C) build your own community which might happen to be Black.   Luckily there are a broad range of options available to you that don't involve abandoning "Blackness." (And what is Blackness anyway?)

 Congrats on having some well developed critical thinking skills. Bloggers are not you parents or your goddesses/gods. Despite all inferences to the contrary, they are fallible and they do not know everything. And while bloggers can offer opinions, tools, and challenge your beliefs, you shouldn’t substitute your own judgment for that of a blogger. Plus, you are going to miss out on all kinds of blessings by judging people based on the color of their skin. You never know where your help comes from. 

I never went to a majority Black school until I was in High School and even then I was in a school within a school because I was in honors classes. In middle school, I was the only Black kid in my entire grade that was in the Individual Honors Program ( for three years).  I went off to college and was often the only Black person in the room in school activities. In addition, I have a tendency to challenge authority and tradition which makes it incredibly difficult to function in traditional Black organizations where asking "Why?" is often frowned upon. 

In other words, I’ve spent a great deal of time in some of the situations you described in your comment. 

Build Your Own Tribe

It sounds to me as if you are going to have to build your own tribe and that tribe may be comprised entirely of like-minded people...who happen to be Black(or not). And you will probably run into those people in settings outside of the institutions of the Black community.  That’s what I’ve done. 

Most of my social circle is made up of highly educated ambitious Black women. Because friendship and alliances are often based on what you have in common.  Some of my friends are single. Some are married. The ones with kids are all married. Almost all of us have passports and use them. Almost everyone has an advanced degree and a side hustle or two or three and none of them have ever brought foolishness to my door or let me bring foolishness to their door. Under the logic of many of the bloggers you are likely referring to, I should run from this group of honorable decent, compassionate, smart, funny, kind, encouraging Black women because they are Black. 

Your tribe is out there looking for you. They are waiting for you to find them, you just have to put yourself in a position to be found. You get foundby living your life and pursuing things you are passionate about- not because of who you will meet, but because of your passion and interests. And guess what? Other people with that same passion and interests are going to show up and usually you’ll connect with at least one of them. Work on developing good internal energy and people will be drawn to you. 

Meetups and locality-based Facebook groups are always a good start. So are classes and other organized activities. 

 If for any reason you were not born into a functioning tribe and haven’t been adopted into one, then you are going to built your own.  You are going to be entrepreneurial about the support network you build around you. And you are going to have to leverage the resources you have available to you -- in other words, don’t block your blessings by judging someone because they have brown skin. It sounds crazy for me to have to type that, but things have gotten THAT outrageous. Millions of Black women are living abundant lives surrounded by support networks made up almost entirely of other Black women. You can have that too. 

Above all, your main obligation in life is to yourself. To accept yourself. To love yourself. To befriend yourself. Part of who you happen to be is a Black woman. 

Here's some more advice from WAOD Readers


I don't know your background, sugarcakes, but I can relate to straddling two "worlds" and residing in neither. Don't give up! It's okay to seek out black and non-black spaces that you've sussed out, and they don't need to be perfect. As long as they benefit you, go for it. And you can have multiple groups that fulfill different needs. No single community has to be all things for you. I learned that the hard way, but that's okay, it's a well-earned lesson.Daphne

@sugarcakes, I have reiterate Daphne's point. I know what it feels like not to belong. I am connected with my family by blood but we have very few things in common. When I was in corporate America, I was isolated and made few real friends from among my work acquaintances. I think one part of the problems is I'm not interested in the middle class ethos (perhaps I never have been) and I will not be a part of victimology that sometimes characterizes the culture of people who are poor. Please note that I didn't say anything about race. Most of the time people are people. There are some people you will not like just because and there are people who will not care for you just because. That's life. I've found that when I pursued my interests, the people I needed in my life (regardless of color) found their way there. Monica

Here is more helpful advice


Go out and build your own tribe!


What a 20-Something Black Woman Can Learn From Middle-Aged Black Women Brawling on Blogs: Get Ready for 20 Somethings Week

Happy Friday! Oh Wow the  apocalypse didn’t actually occur after my last blog post. I’m still here. 


This morning my running coach said two things. The first had me cracking up laughing. The girl who was at  the back of the pack was rushing to catch up and was going to cut a corner at the turn around point and my coach ran at her saying “Don’t run out of fear! Go to the line.” What she was saying was to not focus on the fact that you are behind on a training run. keeping up with the group is not the objective. When you run out of fear, you tense up your muscles and your breathing is more difficult. Run your own race - 90% of which is all in your head. 


The other thing she said ( which is actually relevant to today’s post) is “Don’t compare your beginning to someone else’s middle.” She didn’t come up with that quote, its all over the place.  It occurred to me that the opposite is also true. My middle is someone else’s beginning. A 20-something left a comment in the last thread about trying to reconcile what she was reading on blogs with her Blackness. Others have had questions about the path out. 


I’m an almost middle-aged Black woman. If you are in college, some of you were in your last year of elementary school when I started writing here. You missed all of those formative posts. You also missed all of those formative battles. You’re walking in on a work/conflict already in progress and you’re confused.  I write for me. The way I wrote 7 years ago isn’t the way I write now because I’ve evolved over the years. if you run into someone who says they’ve kept the straight and narrow and haven’t departed from “the way” ever - A) that person’s lying and B) that person lacks intellectual and social curiosity. 


The fact that some of you who are relatively young Black women are confused about some of the things you read on blogs written by middle aged Black women doesn’t mean we have some secret sauce or or special mythical powers - it just means we’re older ( not necessarily wiser) just older. Don’t rush to figure it out. It will come with to you. Continue to be curious. 


But the title of this blog is What About Our Daughters, next week  will be 20- Something Week here on the blog. I’ll be answering some of the questions posed by readers in their 20s and teens. If you have a specific question leave it here in the comments or use the contact form. The links at the top of the page.  


Happy Functional Black Families DAY! The Sad and Bitter Decline of BWE

I guess the BWE blogging sorority didn’t make a New Year’s resolution to stop talking about themselves. There’s always next year! 

In a post called "Basking in the Victory of BWE," the owner of The Muslim Bushido intentionally mischaracterized some of the posts on this blog to serve her own deluded purposes and implies that I want my blog readers to be slaughtered. She claims that I am trying to sabotage the BWE movement--- A movement that only exists in the minds of the megalomaniacs that half a decade later are fighting to make sure they (and they alone) get credit for" BWE." Here's the quote:

"What’s truly dangerous is that some of the saboteurs are well-meaning and have mostly good intentions. They want you to stop talking about escape strategies to leave Blackistan, so you can keep going in circles protesting the endless list of outrages committed by BM. (Here’s looking at you, What About Our Daughters.) Well-meaning saboteurs want BW to believe that they can be empowered while still living and socializing in Blackistan! (Here’s looking at you, What About Our Daughters.) Well-meaning saboteurs want BW to believe that collectively the AA family is generally doing just fine. (Here’s looking at you, What About Our Daughters.) They want BW to believe that the men from the Arceneaux family are representative of the males in modern-day AA families. BWE Messiah[NOPE NOT GIVING IN TO SUCH BLATANT TROLLING BY LINKING TO HER - USE GOOGLE]

Khadija, not only are you delusional, you're now officially a liar and THAT's disappointing... for you.  I was never a part of the BWE brand so I don't know why I am even mentioned in this BWE "victory" post three times. BWE is your's -  I don't want it. Go. Go. Be gone. Be happy. Be anything other than near me!

My act of "sabotage"  ( Beyond being my own woman and not wanting to wear the BWE sorority pin) is that   I am a HUGE HUGE HUGE fan of Black families and communities of Black people. In fact there are few things I enjoy more than seeing a room full of brilliant, talented, smart Black people fellowshiping together.  That shouldn't surprise you, the blog is called What About Our DAUGHTERS. Familial connections are important to me. I think it is abnormal for you to not have familial connections, but I recognize that may be  your experience. Normal is relative.  

I am happiest and most content when I am around my family. Sue me! I’m pro-Black families that are functional. So yeah, seeing  Bethany Arceneaux's Black family rally around a Black woman was a refreshing departure from the normal news narrative and I shared that story- and I'll do it again, because I LOVE Black families!

See: Why Bethany Arceneaux's Story is Resonating: Thanks to Derrimetria Robinson for NOT Being a Bystander

I don’t believe that Black women are obligated to commune or ally themselves with anyone or anything that does not serve their interests. If your community of Black people is not serving you, LEAVE! But if other Black women have a community of Black people  that is serving them, your ought to be ecstatic for for them. Not because they are Black, but because they are happy.


There is something quite sad an pathetic about people who think that because they don't have something, nobody else should have it either. We all know people like this.  Or people who think that because they have not experienced something, it must not exist. Just because you haven't been to Paris doesn't mean the Eiffel Tower doesn't exist. Just because you haven't been to Pamplona doesn't mean people aren't running with the bulls. Just because you haven't had a bear encounter while hiking around a glacier with your Mama doesn't mean that can't happen for other Black women.(The bear thing actually happened- a mama and two cubs.) 

I always chuckle when people say "Black people can't work together." Or "Black women don't know how to support each other." Or "Black people don't do yoga, swim, go crazy, eat tofu..." and on and on. This just demonstrates how tiny and small that person's world is. You mean NOWHERE on the planet EVER have Black people managed to collaborate to accomplish anything... Ever??

I constantly work with other Black women to actually DO things.... other than run my mouth. Exhibit A: if you scroll to minute market 2:21 on this video, you'll see that my voice is shot, I'm sleep deprived and exhausted, but I'm still having fun...doing something...with a community of Black people.

This blog audience is an amazing example of a Black community. 

I don’t have to write-off entire groups/communities of people because I am afraid that I will make poor decisions about who to trust and who to love. Which means the whole world is MINE and I don’t have to live in a tiny enclave shut out from demons, real and imaginary. How’s the view down there in the BWE bunker? Has Bilbo Baggins shown up yet?

So sorry, not going to deprive myself of the joy of interacting with communities of Black people because you have no faith in your own ability to judge who is and is not an appropriate ally.

So while I believe that most of the institutions of the Black community are infected with the diseases of sexism and misogyny, I don’t view every gathering of Black people as inherently bad. Which is why I love social media. Communities of functional Black folks are gathering together all over the place and replacing traditional institutions of the Black community as our social and cultural center.

The BWE sorority ain’t been right since Christelyn “stole” the BWE golden fleece and they've been seething and shrinking ever since. [And No, I'm no fan of Christelyn either-but she is smart enough to leave me in peace.]

Sabotaging the BWE "movement" would take a considerable amount of effort on my part, because I don't know that there is any more damage that can be done to the BWE "movement" that has not already been inflicted by its own membership. The fact that the BWE movement doesn't realize that they've already suffered self-inflicted mortal wounds is just an indication of the level of mental illness permeating the upper echelons of the BWE "movement's" ranks. And by upper echelon- that means two or three people.

Newsflash that whole Christelyn debacle took the BWE brand out - the BWE brand is now as equally associated with greed, megalomania, and infighting ( over crumbs). I'm not saying the BWE brand is dead, I'm just saying its the  online activism equivalent of America Online or the pet rock. ( And for my younger readers who don't know what America Online is, THAT. IS.MY.Point). 

You have to question the intentions of a "movement" that requires Black women to believe that they don't have access to any functional support system. You have to question the sanity of a Black woman who believes that there aren't large numbers of functional Black families. And you have to question the intelligence of a Black blogger who in 2014 still thinks she is entitled to police MY thoughts.

Christelyn inflicted a cosmic wound on your souls and you've been a fragment of your former selves ever since you started coveting  the ring of "recognition." Like Smeagal/ Gollum in Lord of the Rings, your desire to control the ring of the BWE brand is going to shrivel  your soul and cause you to become a prisoner of your own selfish desire and quite frankly it's beneath you.

The easy ( lazy) thing to do is to tell Black women that every community of Black people is evil. The easy (lazy) thing to do is to tell Black women that ALL of their husbands, fathers, sons, uncles, brothers, cousins, neighbors, church members, coworkers are out to get them.

It is far more complex to say - I will exercise good judgment and judge people based on their behavior.  I will make decisions about alliances based on values.  

My readers are smart enough to figure out who shares their values and who does not share their values. My job is to share my values in a persuasive way. It is up to my readers to make up their own minds. I am the Blogmother not their mama. And I am NOT afraid of nuance.  Large broad generalizations work for kindergartner, but fully grown Black women ought to have developed the skills to navigate a world that is messy and sloppy and filled with 1000s of shades of grey. 

While many of my readers have been abused and misused by communities of Black people and may never have benefited from a functional Black community or family, an equally large number of WAOD readers have benefited from and continue to benefit from communities of Black people.  That doesn’t fit the BWE narrative -- but it is no less true. And our narratives count too!

A legitimate goal of Black women who want to empower other Black women and girls is to take control of the Black institutions that THEY. HELPED BUILD AND FUND and impose their values on the institutions. I think that is far more likely an occurrence than getting Black women to sever all ties with their sons, fathers, husbands, grandfathers, uncles, and friends and float off to a commune lead by BWE bloggers.

 If you got out of Blakistan, you shouldn’t look back. To label every gathering of Black people as Blackistan is some White supremacist #$)%(*&% . Go be happy in exile.

Happy New Year Khadija.  It  is awesome to know you’re still a reader and I’m always on your mind.  I’ll do my best to continue to give you something to aim for. Happy Functional Black Families Day!!!

P.S. I hope this doesn’t trigger a tidal wave of  BWE posts describing who is an is not BWE. - Who am I kidding, they can't help themselves.

PPS. Khadija is notorious for claiming BWE victories. She did it in November of 2011 too... right before the Christelyn debacle - so I don't put much stock in this latest declaration. 


In Addition to the Cussing Toddler "Thug Cycle", Police Union and Black People in Omaha Have Other Things to Find Offensive

Everybody, and I mean EVERY.BODY in the Cussing Tot debacle is taking the path of least resistence. The Police Union, Child Protective Services, Black Men United of Omaha, the Media, the Black punditocrisy, Twiter, cussing tot's relatives - just everybody. We've covered this over at the WAOD Facebook Fan Page. 

For those who are not aware, the Omaha Police Officers Association is highly aggrieved and they want the public to know about their sucky job responsiblities. like dealing with aggressive dogs, facial tatoos, Nebraska Senator Ernie Chambers, supervised release laws, and "The Thug Cycle."

And so they used a 2 year old toddler as a sword in their ongoing battle to demonstrate their dissatisfaction with having the deal with criminals. 

So a loyal follower alerted us to a local thug’s public Facebook page today.She was outraged about what the thug had just posted for all to see.

We here at OmahaPOA.com viewed the video and we knew that despite the fact that it is sickening, heartbreaking footage, we have an obligation to share it to continue to educate the law abiding public about the terrible cycle of violence and thuggery that some young innocent children find themselves helplessly trapped in.Here it is.

Now while we didn’t see anything in this video that is blatantly “illegal”, we sure did see a lot that is flat out immoral and completely unhealthy for this little child from a healthy upbringing standpoint.

Listen to the discussions this child is immersed in.

-Sexual discussions.
-Gang discussions.

The thug that posted this video indicates in a subsequent comment that the child is his nephew.

You can clearly hear at least two other adults in the background as well, one being a female.A man can be heard asking the toddler, “what hood you from?”.We can only assume that the female voice is likely the child’s mother, and if that’s true that means she actually allowed this behavior to occur. Omaha POA

I laugh at their statement that they didn't see anything blatantly illegal because anyone who has been in the general vicinity of a criminal courtroom or a law library knows that at any given moment all of us are committing about 5 felonies. In other words, if you want to arrest someone, you can usually find a section of a statute somewhere that justifies the arrest. I could easliy make an argument that the little boy in this video is being abused or neglected and there is probably a judge that would agree with the argument. 

So instead of contacting CPS or asking the crazy/lazy social worker already assigned to this family what she thought of this, they failed to protect the interests of a 2 year old that they took an oath to protect and serve and offered him up to public ridicule.

As a general rule, one of the primary job responsibilities in being a police officer in an urban area is that you will come into contact with the scum of the Earth on a daily basis. You come into contact daily with people, the average person prays their whole life never to encounter. You see people at their absolute worst. That's the job, if you don't want to do that--- do something else. 

But apparently what was most offensive to people is that they labeled this little boy a thug. And THAT apparently was the greatest offense committed in this debacle. 

Willie Hamilton, executive director of Black Men United in Omaha, said that although he doesn't condone behavior portrayed in the video, it is inappropriate for the police union to single out this child to draw sweeping conclusions about the cycle of violence. 

Many people have called him to say that the video further damages the relationship between Omaha police and the black community, Hamilton said. 

“The police actually have a website that is perpetuating mistrust and anger, and I think that is what it is meant to do,” Hamilton said. “I thought posting the video was crossing the line. To use that incident to say that our kids are going to grow up and be thugs is far-reaching and insensitive. We are talking about a child that hasn't even gone to school yet.” Omaha World Herald

Far reaching and insensitive?  I'll address that later.

What the snarky and unprofessional police union did not tell you was that this todder was hit by bullet fragments when his home was shot up in October. The OPOA didn't tell you that some crazy or lazy social worker decided that it was perfectly fine to leave this child in a home headed by a 19 year-old relative along with 4 other minor children after the cussing tot's grandmother was carted off to jail on weapons charges. The OPOA  didn't tell you that cussing tot's father is dead, as a resultof gange violence and cussing tot was conceived when his mother was 12 or 13 years old. Cussing tot's maternal grandfather is also apparently in prison. "Court Records Show a Troubling Family History"

The Omaha Police Department  has a horrible reputation in Omaha's Black community, which they RICHLY deserve based on the tone and tenor of all of their Facebook posts - they will get no defense in this space. But I take umbrage with the focus of the outrage in this case. People are outraged because this child got labeled but appear to be less moved the the all around hellish nature of his environment. I'm not saying not to be offended by him being labeled a thug. I'm saying, can we add some things to your list of outrages?

 Y'all don't mind do ya?


Where were the outraged citizens of Omaha when a much older man/ boy was impregnating the cussing tot's then 13 or 12 year-old mother? He's almost 3, his mother is 16. Do the math.  Where was the Black Men United of Omaha when cussing tot's mother was shot in the leg and arm and when bullet fragments richocheted and hit the baby? ( They made the evening news back then) Where is the outrage directed at cussing tot's pos uncle who fed him obscenities and then posted it on YouTube. Where is Black Men united of Omaha's public statement condemning Black men and boys who troll the neighborhood for 12 year old sex partners?You should be outraged about a social services agency that was aware that this child was being shot and and his mother forced to fend for herself at the age of 16 in household with 4 other minors being headed by a 19 year-old relative.

But NO, we focus on the HORROR of the word "thug" instead of the hellacious nature of this child's life. 

To my earlier point about Black Men United's comments- No, it is not "reaching" to think that any child whose family business is CRIME, will probably also enter the family "business."Your feelings are hurt about a label when this child has already been shot at and wounded before his 3rd birthday and he was possibly conceived when his mother was 12 year's old? "Thug" is what hurt Black folks feelings in Omaha?

We're all like Effie Trinkett from the Hunger Games standing in front of doomed competitors in a death match saying "May the odds be ever in your favor." Knowing good and darned well that the odds are absolutely NOT in their favor because the system's been rigged for all but one of them to die. 

Th odds are NOT in cussing tot's favor. That's not a reach. And that's not because he's Black. That's because every male member of his family is literally dead, in jail, or an active gang member. Though the odds are not in his favor, they are odds and not certainties. And if we cannot have hope in the endless possibilities of small children, then all is lost. Children are the living embodiment of "hope." They are blank slates and lumps of clay to be molded. If there is no hope for small children, then there is no hope- period.  

So at this point the only constructive discussion of cussing tot is how to shift the odds that are NOT in his favor. 

The most obvious answer is to place your bets on cussing tot's 16 year old mama. It's a risky bet, but if you save her, he's got a fighting chance. For those praising the virtues of foster care, I would suggest that you go live for a week in your local foster care system - most of you wouldn't make it past Thursday. 

The institutions of the Black community have got it all wrong. Their myopic focus on the interests of the young Black male, often to the detriment of young Black women is a cultural death spiral. Like patching a gaping wound by wiping up the blood that already silled onto the floor.  It's actually the reverse. Preserve, protect and defend Black women and girls and the lives of Black boys infinitely improve. Why? Because who the heck do you think is raising boys in a community with a 70% -80% oww birth rate.

Cussing tot's 16-year-old mother is taking a lot of flack in the comment's section of most posts about him. But as much as people want to ignore and vilify her, you don't get to toss the interests of Black women and girls overboard and think black boys will prosper.

Despite my many critics protestations to the contrary, What About Our Daughters is inherently about our sons.

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