Black Parenting Principles!

14 Oct

Black Parenting Principles!

A reminder from a prominent black Baptist pastor, Thabiti Anyabwile, that black parenting in the U.S. doesn’t always look exactly the same as white parenting. And he links to some classic scenes from primetime television.

He mentions a couple of crosscultural points I have needed to hear:

-When black parents seem to be harsh with their kids, historically they have looked at such techniques as preparing the kids for a world that will be harsh with them.
-When black kids “bust” on each other in the school hallway, it is not usually a sign that a fight is about to occur. It is a means of communication (side note: I think some hipster whites have learned this technique pretty well, too, judging from some white “putdown contests” I have recently heard).
-When a group of black kids seems to generate more noise out in public than a similarly sized group of white kids, that is just a cultural difference. Glaring at them will only make them think we are prejudiced. They will not suddenly realize that their noise level is inappropriate for the venue they are in, because it is a normal noise level to them. I am not sure how this one can be addressed, say in a restaurant where your group can’t hear each other’s conversation because the kids at the next table are talking at the top of their voices. After so much water over the dam racially, almost anything we will do as whites, including asking to be moved so as not to bother the other group, will probably be seen as prejudiced. We truly need to have that racial conversation in this country . . . at last.

Good post. Burying our heads in the sand over our racial issues doesn’t work anymore (hint: it never did).


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