Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Is Marriage for White People or No People?

Joy Jones’ compelling and disturbing article in this past Sunday’s Washington Post "Marriage is for White People," recounts her own experience--or lack thereof--with marriage in the black community. Her basic argument is that black men are not groomed or ready for marriage and family when their peers among black women are seeking it. As a result, black women learn to focus on their careers (or children, if they have them) and get along without men. Then, when the men finally come around and want to settle down she argues that they bring little to the table. They haven’t got much to offer and seem to demand quite a bit--they are like another child, Jones argues. One black woman is quoted in her article saying that she wouldn’t even accept an engagement ring from Jesus Christ: "I’d tell Jesus we could date, but we couldn’t marry." There is more on this here and here.

All of this is very sad, alarming and awful in and of itself. But beyond the problem that it presents for blacks--as if that were not enough--whites should not assume that it is simply "a black thing" and shrug their shoulders in gawking superiority. I see it more as an early indicator of what is going on in society at large--in other words, a sign of what is coming for our children and what, in many cases, is already here for ourselves. The bad social seeds we are sowing as a society are simply reaping rotten fruit in the black community FIRST. There is a whole host of reasons why this might be so and I won’t go into all of them here except to say that those who are the most vulnerable in a society to bad ideas are always going to be the first to experience their ill effects. But this phenomenon is, by no means, confined to blacks. This is an American problem and it requires serious re-thinking about the role of men and women in society and the importance of marriage to it. A good place to start is (as many here have noted) Harvey Mansfield’s book Manliness.

Discussions - 30 Comments

Mega-dittoes.

You should just tell this fine woman write from me-Why not just stop the whole "Marriage is for White People" and "Can’t find a Brother worth a damn" nonsense marry a MAN-a real MAN (whites can be men too you know). Stop worrying about race, ethnicity and all that nonsense and start worrying about good, decency, society, your children, your happines, etc. when it comes to marriage.

Is it stating the obvious to say that falling birth rates, premarital sex, live-in relationships without marriage, abortion, teenage pregnancy, welfare, drug use and crimes against, and by, children are all symptoms of the same disease? The results of the flower child generation? Tolerance? A lack of personal responsibility? With the words of Bill Cosby, LaShawn Barber http://lashawnbarber.com/archives/2006/03/28/black-marriage/ James Dobson and many others, however, I think, and hope, the pendulum has reached its apex and will begin to swing the other way.

I agree with UG, and also with the fact that this decadence has slowly crept into the white middle class. So far that centurion class has held our nation together, but for how long? The GOP has done a very poor job of representing its interests, and of course the Dems haven’t even tried. Something’s gotta give, and real soon.

" The bad social seeds we are sowing as a society are simply reaping rotten fruit in the black community FIRST."

Nice alliteration, Julie!

Another problem that can be lain directly at the feet of Liberals and the Media. By celebrating Black Culture, by which they mean Black Thug Life, they have now succeeded in raising a couple generations of black men not capable of participating in a functional, successful family (gross generalization admitted here). These values are also promoted as the culture to emulate by whites, and we are seeing these same results appear across demographic lines now.

Thanks hippies. Thanks MTV.

Gosh! From manly men to smelly hippies and black thugs. Joe K. .... remember when I suggested that it was difficult to distinguish the values on this blog from the values of rich white men? Remember how that made you uncomfortable? Don’t any of you want to disassociate from the rampant racism and fundamentalist sexism brewing here?

And the Oscar for the best original song goes to....’Hard Out Here for a Pimp’

I suggested that it was difficult to distinguish the values on this blog from the values of rich white men...Comment 7 by Fung

Some people who have values are men, some people who have values are white, some people who have values are rich. Some people who have values are men, white and rich. I would much rather share values with people, some of whom happen to be rich, male and white, than to share a lack of values with those who would glamorize pimps.

Guido - You might as well paint my parents’ generation with the same brush as Dean Martin and Frank Sinatra. My parents no more reflect Rat Pack values than does the average liberal or Black person reflect the values of that (ironic) song about pimps.

I despise the glorification of pimps, and violence, and the subjectification of women that are rampant in Hip Hop and Rap, and I am sorry to see them become a part of mainstream entertainment. But, my parents were sorry to see sir Paul McCartney and the rest of the Fab Four exert their influence on music, as well.

Before that, conservatives feared Elvis, James Dean, the Blues, and apparently Mozart himself was not such a great guy, and was seen as a dangerous rebel by some.

But, I believe it is a mistake to equate a stylized image with the values of real, honest people.

It is also a mistake to suppose that a group of people whose values are different from your own must therefore LACK values. There is a big difference between holding DIFFERENT values from a bunch of conservative white guys, and holding NO values. Again, this is not so say that I like the values that I see in the Hip Hop culture. I just know that those are not modal African American values.

So, Fung, what are "modal" African-American values? And try to explain them without reference to statistical terms, por favore.

So, Mark, are you saying that The Hippies are responsible for glamorizing and promoting "thug life" in our everyday culture? So, the mellow, peace-love-and-harmony people who would wear flowers in their scraggly hair are now promoting gun violence and over-the-top misogyny? They sure did change. It must be comforting for you in some way to always have those Flower Children of the ’60s to scapegoat for every problem and cultural ill. It’s certainly easy.

Well, Tim, the CounterCulture did weaken the authority of traditional culture in our society. Social control because far more problematic, which has opened the door to all kinds of counterproductive behaviors in the name of "civil rights." And no, I’m not saying nothing good came of those movements...but much that is wrong also sprang up as a result.

My parents no more reflect Rat Pack values than does the average liberal or Black person reflect the values of that (ironic) song about pimps Comment 9 by Fung

I would much rather share values with people, some of whom happen to be rich, male and white, than to share a lack of values with those who would glamorize pimps.

I was talking about the lack of values being projected from Hollywood there, Fung. And I might add this to what I said above:

I would much rather share values with people, some of whom grew up during the flower child generation and either weren’t taken in by it or grew out of it.

Dain - As Americans, most of the Black people whom I know (neighbors, co-workers, friends, students) share the same values that other Americans do. They want their kids to be happy and healthy, and to attend good schools. They want themselves and their families to be safe and prosperous. They want a fair shake at the American Dream.

Other than that, I perceive as much variability among the "Black Community" as I do among the "White Community."

Guido:

"I was talking about the lack of values being projected from Hollywood there, Fung. And I might add this to what I said above:"

Why in the world would you (a) isolate that one song/dance and let it represent Hollywood, and then (b) worry about the values of Hollywood in the first place?

This strikes me as similar to identifying one message (pick one: bill O’Reilly, Charles Krautheimer, Rachel Maddow, Harry Reasoner, and letting THAT represent the values of one single perceived "media."

Hollywood is the source (and reflection) of a great deal of variety. Love stories, war stories, drama, comedy.....Movies about attorneys........ Good grief, we have enough of THAT kind of movie, don’t we? Why would you let "It’s hard out here for a Pimp" represent anything bigger than what it is?

Why in the world would you (a) isolate that one song/dance and let it represent Hollywood, and then (b) worry about the values of Hollywood in the first place? Comment 14 by Fung

(a)That song seems to be a great example of the degeneration of virtue in Hollywood. That’s why I used it. If you have better examples of the degeneration of virtue in Hollywood, by all means, mention them.

(b) I worry about Hollywood for the same reason most parents of teenage children worry about Hollywood. ’Nough said?

Hollywood is the source (and reflection) of a great deal of variety .....Movies about attorneys........ Good grief, we have enough of THAT kind of movie, don’t we? Comment 14 by Fung

Touche

Well, Fung, since the black community has embraced hiphop (and I don’t see how you can deny this), I’d say that those are modal norms, at least for a large subsegment of this population. You are splitting hairs.

Well, Dain, if we are using words to discuss, and you use them as you have, then some hairs need to be split. A large "subsegment"? Those are modal norms?

Frankly, I hear more white kids playing hip hop than I do black kids. Not to say that Black kids aren’t listening to it, but White kids are, as well.

What is a large subsegment? Are the Amish a large subsegment of White America? The Shakers? Methodists? Does a large subsegment constitute a mode?

AGain, I don’t hear my Black neighbors who are MY age playing Hip Hop. They are more liekly to play Motown. They don’t embrace Rap and Hip Hop any more than I embrace the head-banging crap that my sons listen to.

I love my sons to death, but their choice of music sucks just as badly as my dad thought my choice sucked. Of course, he was wrong.

I love my sons to death, but their choice of music sucks Comment 18 by Fung

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o762HKxYMeA&eurl=

Heh heh heh.

Gotta love this music.

Again, Fung, you are dwelling on details to avoid the larger point. Hiphop is wildly popular among black youth...I’m sure you are aware of it. As for values, just how many black children are born out of wedlock? What was that percentage, Fung? Help me out here.

"What was that percentage, Fung? Help me out here. "

I thought you wanted me to avoid the statistics:

"And try to explain them without reference to statistical terms, por favore."

Try as I might, I just cannot make you happy, Dain!

My point continues to be that it is easy, and apparently self-reinforcing for racists to point to an entire ethnic group, observe two or more trends that they don’t like, and then connect the dots. You observe hip hop and an apparent trend in marriage among African Americans, and connect them. At the same time, you refuse to consider the historic and cumulative effects of poverty, discrimination, racism, substandard education, segregation. You also apparently ignore the fact that there are plenty of Whites who make crappy husbands, too, But, if we recognize THAT fact, then we are feminists. The crappy husband thing has nothing to do with Whiteness, in this case, it is all about feminists not wanting to have sex with men! And, at the same time, you magnify Hip Hop, a youth culture phenomenon, and apply it to an entire group. Again, you might as well suggest that Gothic Music reflects the values of all White people, and that it is responsible for the "alarming" new trend of polygamy!

Why do righties cares so much about what goes on in other peoples’ bedrooms? You don’t want kids to learn about safe sex, you don’t want liberals to breed at all, you don’t want gays to have sex, you don’t want polygamists to polygam, you do want Blacks to marry, you don’t want gays to marry..... don’t you get tired of being the values police?

Nice, Fung...anyone who makes the association between hip-hop and social pathology is a racist. I think you’ve graduated to the top eschelon of the Leftist Lunatics Brigade.

I suppose Bill Cosby, who makes the same connection, is also a racist?

Besides, I never said that one causes the other. In actuality, I think both hip-hop and social pathologies are symptoms of a desperately flawed value system...one that is rife in the black community.

And here are the statistics you are avoiding (straightforward, and without jargon): births to unmarried women -- 23.6% of all births among non-hispanic whites versus 68.5% of all births among non-hispanic blacks (CDC, 2003). That’s quite a subsegment there, Fung. But no problem here, right?

I didn’t say that connecting the apparent dots makes you a racist. I suggested that it is a favorite activity of racists. Plus, I think that we’ve established elsewhere that you are a racist.

And no, I don’t think that Cosby is a racist. I think, instead, that when he looks at problems within the Black community, he doesn’t care about White peoples’ problems. In a similar way, when people are in a burning house, trying to find their way out, they don’t stop and wonder about the people outside the house. In a similar way, feminists resist discussions of men when they try to share ways that women can help themselves.

As for your stats: Unless the stats for Whites are zero %, then you have suggested that the differences between the two groups are quantitative, and not differences in kind.

Fung, this thread began by noting that the disease is spreading. I agree...whites have "caught" this moral malaise, although it’s neither as deeply embedded nor as fast-growing as you find in minority groups.

You’ve never established that I’m "a racist." You prefer to believe that, but you’ve demonstrated to us that any white man who stands up for his own self-interest is automatically a "racist" in FungWorld. You’re the bigot, not me.

We "caught" the disease from "them"? Kind of like the British "caught" the "French" disease, and the French caught the Spanish disease, and gay Haitians brought us AIDS?

Thank you, (again) for making my point more clearly than I ever can.

So, "we" invented it and exported it to "them," and that’s why it’s so much worse among "them?" That could only be true if it were once worse among "us," but it never has been. Fung, will you never cease to use such tortured logic? And again, you’ve put words in my mouth. I put "" around caught, and I never said that minorities were the "vectors" spreading the malaise. As always, you jump to your inevitable conclusion...all who disagree with Fung are bigots. All hail Fung the Moral Giant!

" All hail Fung the Moral Giant!"

I am smiling at this one. I may have to keep it. That way, I’ll always have a piece of you with me, big guy:)

Dain, can you provide us with your basic definition and/or description of what a racist is?

I’m not the one who specializes in calling people that name...ask Fung the Moral Giant (FMG for short?).

A racist categorizes problems and solutions according to the characteristics of the "races" involved, and sets his or her own race above and ahead of others.

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