Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Myth of Black Male Shortage

What you want my make you cry/What you need might pass you by/If you don't catch it

What you need ironically/Will turn out what you want to be/If you just let it

Lauryn Hill "When it hurts so bad."

For the last three days, I've been seeing these broadcasts about the shortage of black men and I want to throw my shoe at the television and my computer screen. This is such a myth that has black women looking for love in all the wrong places.

But there are many inaccuracies about this myth that are not tackled. This encompasses the lie that black females were told growing up. It was hammered into our psyches that if we did good in school, didn't act like a hoochie-coochie in public, and got a degree, we could have any man we wanted. Then we were instructed to only get men of a certain, how should I say this, status.

Additionally, the brothers today not only have to have a good job, good credit, and a fabulous wardrobe, but he gotta have this Obama-Jay Z swagger. OHH fucking eMMM Geee! The expectations have become incredibly unattainable.

And these women, with their nice Ann Taylor three-pieces, are sitting all dolled-up in the church pews, with half of the qualifications they ask of, praying to God for "Mr. Right."

Oh, and this one gets me. When a woman meets a man with these qualifications, she complains when she has to be the perfect housewife, career woman, supermommy and a stripper rolled into one.

Today, many of those women, married and single, are crying the blues for a host of reasons.

For some of us, two abortions, bad credit, four relocations, a restraining order, and an assault case later, we are still lonely.

Where are the good men? We cry.

Right under our noses, and in many cases, not from the United States.

When I was in Atlanta, I complained to a male friend of mine that I was going out with some of the most shiftless Negroes I came across. These suit-and-tie fools, who were Morehouse graduates, walked around like cocks in hen-pens. They were so arrogant because they thought they had a huge pick of hens, but so confused because they kept selecting chicken heads.

My friend gave me advice that I thank him for to this day. He said, "EcoSoul, real men are not afraid to ride the Marta (public trains)."

This snapped me back into reality. Silly me, I had been closed-minded to an area of brothers who are eligible, honest, and loving; however, I have heard a lot of sisters suck their teeth in disagreeance, or worry about what their family and friends would say if they brought home a blue collar man.

And, if they do go out with one brother who is not a "working professional" and the experience is horrible, they blame it on their social status and go right back to chasing sport-fucking attorneys and cornball corporate types who bore the shit out of them.

My father being a truck driver, and my mother being an intellectual, I grew up in a household where my mother married and stayed with a man who socially did not "fit" her status. But six children and 36 years later, they are still thriving.

Which gets back to this shortage. Not only must women be open to the pool of men they are selecting, but not be afraid to look at black men from other countries.

This goes for women who are not just African-American, but women who are African and Caribbean who all turn their noses to other black ethnicities for not being their type of man.

Truth be told. When you are dating the West, the rules change for everyone. Black folk from other countries do not operate within the context of their ethnic/cultural heritages, but adapt to the hybrid conditions.

I hear my African sisters and West Indian women tell me their stories about men that want them to cook and act like their mamas, and then look and fuck like Beyonce! Tsk, Tsk.

My sisters laugh at me when I tell them to travel and go off the resort and meet brothers who are working in the business sectors of Africa, South America and the Caribbean. These places are teeming with eligible black males.

Now, I'm not saying to pick up of those resort prostitutes. There are successful black men in every black country who needn't worry about Visas and Green Cards. But there are also honest working men that you might find.

Now, I'm not saying that the shit is not tricky. Just like in US, every place has dudds, but everyone is not hopping and jumping to scam.

Be open and cautious. There are places that specialize in selling sex. There are African-American men who flock to Brazil to pluck g-string female beachgoers who are really prostitutes combing the sands for a John. In the end, these brothers walk away with drawers full of TNT or in some cases, a record.

An AIDS test, a family check, and a courtship.

Another suggestion is to leave the "Stella Got Her Groove Back," mentality behind. You see where that got the author of the book, a Jamaican who came out of the closet after he cha-chinged.

Anyway, the last thing you want to do is exoticize black men in other countries because you will get what you think, someone who is more freakier than you fantasized about.

HO hum, I know some people are saying, EcoSoul, you are really going there. And yes, I am. There is no shortage, sisters gotta do what nomads have been doing for thousands of years. When the land is dried up they go to another place and find fertile soil.

2 ish talking intellectuals holla at a sista:

RiPPa said...

As a Trini born bredda as we does say. I co-sign and approve this message!

Goddess Intellect said...

Men sometimes give me headaches..but I have never once believed this shortage myth bullshit...although I was one of the women raised to believe if I got my education and kept my legs closed my choices would be endlessssssss...
I'm still learning the ropes..I'll get there soon!
This post was encouraging, thank you!