Let me say this up front. I have never been a fan of "Reverend" Jesse Jackson. Also I have never understood how he became MY black leader. When did we have that election? No one ever came up to me and asked if I'm going to vote for Mr. Jesse Louis Jackson, Sr. as the next black leader. Now that I've gotten that off my chest. Let's talk about Mr. Jackson's recent comments against Senator Obama.
Mr. Jackson stated that Senator Obama was talking down to blacks and that "I wanna cut his (Obama) nuts off." This childish remark stems from statements made by Obama, in several predominantly black churches, that black males must take greater responsibility for their behavior. Mr. Jackson just adds to his list of irresponsible comments and actions. From calling Jews "Hymies" and to New York City as "Hymietown," to breaking his wedding vows and having an affair with a staffer, Karin Stanford, that resulted in the birth of a daughter. Mr. Jackson has in my view never been an example of a leader. He is a self promoter that often treat black Americans as nothing more than a backdrop as he enriches himself. His view of blacks as helpless victims whose destructive actions are not their fault but ONLY the fault of society is misleading and damaging.
Jackson is seeing his light fading in the brightness of a new generation of African Americans. A generation that is calling for greater responsibility within the black community. The data on the status on African Americans is sobering.
* More than half of all black men in the nation's inner cities drop out of high school.
* More than 70 percent of black male high school dropouts in their 20s were out of work in 2004.
* By their mid-30s, 60 percent of high school dropouts have served time in jail.
* 70% of black women are single.
* 62% of black families with children are headed by a single parent.
* 85% of black children DO NOT live in a home with their fathers.
* 70% of African American boys in the criminal justice system come from single parent homes.
* 2 MILLION black males are either currently in a state or federal prison or have been in one.
We can argue over the reasons: bad schools, absent parents, racism, structural changes in the economy and/or a subculture that glorifies gangsterism. All have an impact, but in the end we must demand a greater level of personal responsibility.
Perhaps the most distressing implication is the growing gender imbalance between black men and black women.
The impact of inner-city life has depleted many black communities of its men. From homicide, to drugs, to prison the African American male is an endangered species.
This has left a gap between our black males and black females that threatens to destroy the black community in ways no outside force has managed to in the entire history of African Americans.
We are witnessing black men being left behind by black females in education, jobs, and even maturity. It is time to stop finding excuses for this anti-social behavior and demand greater accountability.
In his comments Mr. Jackson has made a jackass of himself. The time of black leaders has passed. It is time that all black men and women become leading blacks in moving our people forward.
This is my view, what's yours?