By Ayize Ma’at
You’re probably thinking WTF!!??! Like my wife, you may be thinking why would you hope someone feels bad on Father’s Day? As co-owner of this site she expressed that she didn’t like “the energy” of this post on a day like Father’s Day. But, it’s my day and I’m gonna keep it 100. To be honest…. Your recklessness, abandonment, and shameful acts of irresponsibility have become my problem. Yes…when you don’t do what you are supposed to (i.e. teach your children) someone else does. What man allows another man to carry his own weight?
As a father raising four children I find myself shielding and protecting my children from a chaotic world that exists in our community because of your negligence. Boys disrespecting girls in our community exists because of YOU. High out of wedlock birthrates exists because of YOU. Bullying exists because of YOU. Teen pregnancy exists because of YOU. Identity confusion exists because of YOU. Low self esteem exists because of YOU. Angry black boys in an assembly line to prison exists because of YOU. Low academic achievement exists because of YOU.
Yes, the aforementioned statements are sweeping generalizations void of the panoramic perspective needed to examine black fathers. Yes, there are plenty of socio-economic variables that contribute to the host of social issues previously mentioned. Although I recognize the plethora of contributing factors, today I’ve chosen to focus exclusively on the communal impact of absent black fathers because they need to hear real talk and feel the real pain of neglected children and disappointed black men who have “manned up” because they’ve decided to “man down”.
For many of you the instinctive reaction is to turn toward your “baby’s mama” and say she’s the reason why you are not in your child’s life. I hear you. I believe she may have made it difficult for you. I know you probably hate her. But guess what champ…..GET OVER IT! IT AIN’T ABOUT HER. IT AIN’T ABOUT YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH HER. IT IS ABOUT YOUR CHILD. It may be hard as hell to get back in your child’s life. But isn’t your child worth going to hell and back?
Today, tomorrow, next week, next year when I’m walking down the street holding my sons hands or holding my daughters hands and I notice the furtive glances of children who have no father in their life…I WILL BE REMINDED OF YOU. Their eyes tell a story of disappointment, frustration, anguish, and abandonment. So yes…I hope you feel bad on Father’s Day….. because your absence has caused your children to feel bad EVERYDAY.