Posts tagged ‘Black people’

Slavery in 2013

slaveAs a young girl, I was always glad that I wasn’t born a slave. In school I read about indentured servant, but knew that type of enslavement occurred only until that person could work off his or her debt. Slave trading of African people and those of African descent in the United States (and other countries as well) was a different story altogether, and created an indelible imprint of no class citizenship among African American people.

Growing up, I often thought I was a slave to my mom and dad since they told us what to do and we did it – most of the time without question. However the idea that I could be taken from my family, identity changed, beaten, told what to think/believe and forced to do whatever my “slave owners” wanted done was absolutely terrible@! After watching the miniseries, Roots by Alex Haley, and the pain of watching my ancestors sold away from their families, forced to work for no pay, brutally beaten, forced to have sex, (the list of atrocities goes on..) I knew I would never need to relive that part of my heritage. Until now..

Last weekend I saw 12 Years a Slave. I didn’t really want to see it. I mean it was going to be another movie about how slaves were mistreated “in the South”, and frankly I had had enough. However, the perspective of this movie was told from the viewpoint of a freed black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery. Watching the atrocities against the enslaved people still made me sick to my stomach. The fact that people actually justified enslaving African people as being “the right thing to do” still made no sense to me. However, what I liked about 12 Years a Slave was the tenacity that Solomon Northrup possessed (and how remembering who he was, continued to give him hope until he was rescued).

Unfortunately, slavery did not end with the Emancipation Proclamation. No, modern day slavery is still occurring today in 2013. Today it’s called human trafficking. Human trafficking is the trade of people, usually young girls for sexual slavery, forced labor or extraction of organs or tissues. It’s a $32 billion (per year) industry and women are kidnapped from their families and “trafficked” throughout the world.

Interested in stopping human trafficking? Get involved! Google the topic, human trafficking to find advocacy organizations in your area where you can volunteer your time or make donations.  One local organization that I have partnered with is the Chicago Dream Center (http://www.chicagodreamcenter.org/ministries/human-trafficking/). The Chicago Dream Center is actively involved in advocacy work and recovery for victims of trafficking. #GetInvolved!

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru
Author & Speaker

http://www.clynnwilliams.com
cgwwbooks@yahoo.com

November 12, 2013 at 12:25 pm 2 comments

We Choose People Like Our Parents

Do you believe we choose mates like our parents? My daughter certainly thinks so, and I am really wondering if parents are the reasons young women in our communities to go awry, south, crazy, whatever phrase you want to attach here.

Here’s the story: I am related or mentoring at least five women over the age of 20, who are pregnant and unmarried. Two of the young women I have known all of their lives. Their parents are hard-working people. Well their mother is hard-working; dad is retired now, but was always what my grandmother would say – ‘nickel slick’. Nickel slick is someone who knows the rules, but doesn’t always abide by the rules. These girls were raised properly, taught to respect themselves and yet seemed to follow the path of their girlfriends (getting pregnant) and not their mother. Why?

Daily I hear that social norms are changing, and marriage is passé. It’s no longer necessary to be married to have children. One of the young ladies felt that way long before she got pregnant. While I completely disagree with that line of thinking, let’s dig deeper to get at the root of the issue. Why are our daughters feeling that they have to raise children by themselves, with no husband and many times, no boyfriend? In African American communities, “Non-Hispanic black men and women aged 25-44 have lower percentages who have ever been married than non-Hispanic white and Hispanic persons of the same age.” – See more at: http://marriage.laws.com/marriage-statistics#sthash.ydfVSfgd.dpuf. According to Dr. Boyce Watkins, “black women aren’t getting married because many of the available black men are incarcerated.” http://tiny.cc/mtyjzw.

I believe the issue has to do with how we are raising our daughters. I talk about it in my new book: Raising Your Daughter: the Joys, Tears & Hormones! It’s one thing to expect your daughter to conduct herself as a lady, wait until marriage to have sex, and allow men to respect her as the beautiful woman that she is. Is that the example that she sees growing up? Is that how you conducted yourself? Was her father (your husband) faithful to you? Did he treat you kindly and respectfully? Today, many women are starved for love & attention. Maybe you don’t have a relationship with your father. Maybe you didn’t know your father. Maybe he didn’t tell you he loved you. So, the first ‘nice’ comment you receive from a guy, you have sex with him and you believe you’re in love. Major mistake! And not a mistake you want your daughter to have to learn from. Teach your daughter to have dates where nothing is required of her but her company. Matter of fact, teach her to be selective, have many dates, and decide if you like what your date is talking about. Get to know him, his family and his background before you become intimate.

Having a child should not be a ‘Rights of Passage’ for your young daughter. I guess that means you have to do a better job of picking your mate too.

C. Lynn Williams, #MsParentguru
Author & Parenting Coach

Trying to Stay Sane While Raising Your Teen (St. Paul Press, 2010)
The Pampered Prince: Moms Create a GREAT Relationship with Your Son (St. Paul Press, 2012)
Raising Your Daughter: the Joys, Tears & Hormones! Available in late summer, 2013

July 1, 2013 at 6:29 pm 1 comment


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