Activist and Girl Nerd Extraordinaire
Friday, August 15, 2008
Great Fathers: Unsung Heroes
Okay, I just had to respond when I accidentally came across a really offense post attacking Obama as a father. The author seemed to believe that there are no good African-American fathers and therefore Obama must be pretending to be a good father but couldn't possibly actually be one. It wasn't the attack on Obama that bothered me so much as the assumption that there are no good African-American fathers. I know many. None of these good fathers are really celebrated in popular culture and many people (like Obama and Cosby) have been understandably vocal about the number of absent African-American fathers. Maybe it's time we started talking about those that are there and doing good with their kids...
Here's my reply to that blogger: Fortunately, no one seems to be reading your blog because it's really sad that you, like so many, are unaware of the many African-American men who have dedicated their lives to being good fathers and role models. While people like Will Smith and Forest Whittaker are celebrity examples of wonderful fathers, and yet not really celebrated for this in the media, there have been many equally excellent fathers throughout history, despite the many challenges that African-Americans have faced as families were split apart first by slavery and then by poverty and all that comes with that. Behind many successful African-American men and women are good fathers like Charles Drew himself who had four children or his father, Richard Drew(who stressed the value of education to his children, or Lorraine Hansberry's father, Carl Hansberry (active in the black community in Chicago, including in social change work.) Neither of these fathers were absent or abusive but, on the contrary, were supportive of their children and positive role models inside the home and out. I assure you that they are not alone and if they were more celebrated in popular culture then young men now would have these men to look up to, like they can now look up to Obama as a role model. If you want to attack Obama then stick to the issues, attacking his personal life is not only low but will get you nowhere. Meanwhile, I would recommend you visit the site, fatherdad.com to read about yet another good African-American father...and a current day one at that.