The origins of the “aint no good Black men” myth date back to slavery, as articulated by that fictitious bastard, Willie Lynch. In “The Making of a Slave”, Willie Lynch instructs plantation owners that ” You must use the FEMALE vs. the MALE, and the MALE vs. the FEMALE.” The letter goes on to explain precisely how this is achieved:
“We reversed nature by burning and pulling a civilized nigger apart and bullwhipping the other to the point of death, all in her presence. By her being left alone, unprotected, with the MALE IMAGE DESTROYED, the ordeal caused her to move from her psychologically dependent state to a frozen, independent state. In this frozen, psychological state of independence, she will raise her MALE and female offspring in reversed roles. For FEAR of the young male’s life, she will psychologically train him to be MENTALLY WEAK and DEPENDENT, but PHYSICALLY STRONG.
Because she has become psychologically independent, she will train her FEMALE offsprings to be psychologically independent. What have you got? You’ve got the nigger WOMAN OUT FRONT AND THE nigger MAN BEHIND AND SCARED. This is a perfect situation of sound sleep and economics. Before the breaking process, we had to be alertly on guard at all times. Now, we can sleep soundly, for out of frozen fear his woman stands guard for us. He cannot get past her early slave-molding process.“
Images like those produced by the media are a means to “pull a civilized nigger apart” by destroying the male image. When negative images that represent a minority within our community are presented as representative of the Black male collective, Willie Lynch smiles in hell with the knowledge that his formula has proven correct and self-perpetuating.
Part of that formula was successfully carried out during the war on drugs in the United States.
Based on the findings above, the war on drugs effectively decimated the Black family unit, and changed the standards for Black women.
A “Good Black Man” Is Subjective
The whole conversation about the lack of “good Black men” assumes that a woman can use universal standards to find a man that is qualified to be involved in a long term relationship. And these universal standards are usually imposed upon our Black women by white media.
African American women – you may in fact find those three African American men out of 100 who are heterosexual, college graduates with advanced degrees, who make more than $130,000 per year, and who dont have any children outside of your relationship. But what happens when that man beats the hell out of you day in and day out, manipulates you, destroys your self esteem, and cheats on you perpetually? Would he be classified as a “good Black man” then?
My point is this: Metrics like money and level of education are not the measure of a man. When we are talking about something as subjective as relationships, mere quantifiers like how much money a man makes has little relevance to his character.
For example, my barber is a former felon, makes less than $30,000 on paper, is not employed within the white establishment, has a kid by an ex-wife, and never graduated high school. According to social media, this man is not qualified for a Black woman.
However, he owns the barber shop that he cuts hair in, is a magnificent father and active member in the community, can jump from a conversation on Kobe versus Jordan to a conversation on how Wall Street brought down the economy by trading mixed risk asset class securities in a single breath, and has intentionally depressed his earnings while reinvesting profits into his shop.
But he aint a “good Black man”.
Changing the Narrative
As a Black man, I am not going to tap dance around this issue.
Its easy for many to take the statistics presented in mainstream media at face value, but upon closer examination, its also easy to see where these stats fail.
First off, many of the statistics we read are based on a small segment of the population. Sometimes, only a few hundred people are polled from a single geographic area, and their responses are presented as the primary indicator of the state of the African American population as a whole.
For instance, if we were to take Chicago’s incarceration rate as the principle indicator of African American male incarceration, then we can make the incorrect assumption that 55% of the Black male population is incarcerated, or has a felony.
When I throw statistics and biased, feminist media narrative out of the window and look at my social circle, I realize that I am surrounded by good Black men, who love their Black women, who work from “cant see in the morning” until “cant see at night”, and who may not have gone to college, but who can go toe-to-toe intellectually with any brainwashed college graduate. So who the hell says that there are only 3 out of 100 African American men who are “good”?
As far as I know, there are only two groups that truly perpetuate the “aint no good Black men” myth: whites, and Black Feminists.
Read Also: 4 Reasons Feminism is a Threat to Black Consciousness
When it comes to the white establishment and media, pay them no mind. We already know what they are about. If you are a Black man, refuse to hold yourself to the materialistic, gender-role engineering of said white establishment. If you are a Black woman, I ask that you like me and love me for my merits AND my demerits, so long as they are based on the soundness of my character.
If you are an African American woman and you continue to justify your self-hatred, ignorance, and rejection of your true heritage and culture by throwing Black men under the bus, you are responsible for the destruction of the Black community – because you are the mothers of our community and civilization.
Read Also: The Beauty, Power, and Divinity of the Black Woman
Amaris Herron, one of our female readers who had this to say:
Black women, our men love us. They do. However, when a third of us are behaving as classless, whorish, idiots; and another third of us are stubborn, bourgeoisie, European imitators; the remaining third of us who know how to be strong without compromising our femininity must sift through the sons of the 2/3 crazy women. Our sons will do what we require them to do. Our men will aspire to the bar we hold them to. It’s up to US to remain steadfast in our love of Self, so that the men do not have the option of getting easy sex, being sub-par providers, and the excuse that ‘successful’ women look down on them.
It’s up to US, to encourage our men to pursue a trade that allows him to be his own boss. Stop looking down on our men who refuse to be bossed by white men! Don’t settle, but STOP putting them down, too! They WANT to be our ‘hero’, they WANT our admiration and respect. And they WILL work for it-IF we give them a reason to.They WANT our love just as much as they hate our disrespect. WE must raise the bar.”
I believe both Black men and Black women can step our game up. Black women, lay off the Black feminism at the expense of your love for Black men. Black men, stop . And both Black men and women must cease and desist getting hoodrats pregnant and falling for the bad boy image, only to get taken advantage of and then trying to use the old “Black men/women aint shit” to justify your poor, lust driven decision making skills.
Suffice to say that as Black men and women, we face enough hell on Earth as it is. And because of that fact, it will be inherently difficult to find any Black man or woman who has fewer issues than the norm.
We live in a society that has taken everything from us, has incarcerated us en masse, has instituted a “felony first” policy, and then looks down on us for our inability to land high-paying jobs. Is it any wonder, then, that so many Black men are trapped?
Is it because we are lazy, unintelligent, unambitious? Or is it because the deck is institutionally stacked against us?
As Black men and women, we should avoid internalizing narratives that attempt to enforce standards for what a “good Black” is in white society, and in doing so, avoid the shame, rage, and depression that comes from an inability to meet those standards.
Instead, lets change the narrative on both sides and realize that both good Black men and women are everywhere – if we can just see them for who they are!