Jul 8, 2008

Whose Fault Is It Black Male Leadership?

A Failure of Black Male Leadership: Is It Too Late Too Change?

White Americans will love reading this, and some blacks will hate me for writing this, but brothas, haven’t we failed as leaders?

My position is that what has succeeded and what has failed on the continent of Africa and the rest of the world can be attributed to the success or the failure of dominant male leaders who took charge, and in our communities to black male leaders.

I am willing to admit, as a black male, that I am part of the reason that the black nation in America has not risen to its fullest potential and overcome all of the structural barriers and bitter racism that was thrown its way, and how many of you will join me?

Let’s face it, with few exceptions males have been in charge in Africa as far back as most of us can remember, and where has it gotten the nations of the African continent? Yes, there have been some matrilineal and female-dominated societal exceptions, but so far it would appear that women heads-of-state, nations and nation-states have been the exception and not the rule.

A historical and disturbing trend in the world-wide global village is being amplified and expressed more and more as women are beginning to emerge from behind their male power-bosses and speaking out about the historical injustices done to them under draconian male leadership? It has become clearer and clearer that many of the failures that we are witnessing in the world today, in western and non-western nations, has had to do with exclusive and dominant male leadership.

I love reminding males who believe in ‘the divine right of male rule’, a belief that man is supposed to rule over especially women, children and the Earth (which sounds man-made in and of itself), of the Golden Rule. Men often forget that rule, and I believe the latter trumps the former and is incontrovertible, whereas the meaning of the other is ambiguous. What happened to doing unto others as you would have them to do unto you? Men believe that good or bad, that they are supposed to rule, even when we take everyone into the ditch with us!

I sat wondering the other day why of the 57 nations on the continent of Africa, why are so many of these nations in such dire straits, particularly the black nations. All of us mostly have read about the Golden Age in Africa and of the great black empires of antiquity. Well what happened to make them great in the first place and why is it that so many of these former empires are so weak today? There is a common denominator that cannot be overlooked, males have been and still are in charge?

Anecdotally, the problem had to be because of male leadership given that it is a known fact that males in most instances were and still are in complete control of governing, defense, planning, law-making and making provisions for the people! The rise and fall of African societies depended on the wisdom and vision of male leaders the same as in other non-African societies certainly; you could not blame the failure of many African nations on the women, just as you cannot blame the failures of the black nation in America on the women.

In fact, I will catch a beatdown for saying this, but if the leadership in all of the historical failing nations on the African continent and other parts of the world were turned over to women, these societies, nations and nation-states would turn around in just about two decades or less I suspect.

I wonder just how often it has occurred, historically, that females who were forced to sit idly by, realized that the males did not have a clue as to what they were doing, but they had to keep quiet order to save their own lives so they simply kept quiet. Poverty, sickness, hunger all abound in many nations on the Africa continent, just as it does n many predominately black areas in America.

Apart from the known reasons why blacks have suffered disproportionably in America, one still has to wonder why the African nation in American has not overcome. I suspect that the problem again points to failed black male leadership. Some will say then are you excusing the injustices that were promulgated against blacks. No, I am not excusing it all. I am simply wondering, why haven’t we overcome it, are we weak?

I am willing to say, as a black male, that I am part of the reason that the black nation in America has not risen to its fullest potential and overcome all of the structural barriers and bitter racism that was thrown our way; how many will join me?

Okay, before the women say, what a great guy! Trust me, I am a male chauvinist and I hate to see a woman acting like a man or having one bossing me around – I still have chauvinism down inside me. In fact, I still believe that women are hum baby, pretty, however, you're also pretty darn smart. Okay I said it, and in so doing I have likely forfeited my membership in the boyz club forever more!

But having said that, I stand by what I have written, I don’t believe that we have been very nice to you folks, and I believe that the world would have been a much better place and our home continent a greater continent, if males would have abided by the Golden Rule and treated women just as we wanted to be treated with honor, dignity and respect.

Many of you would have and still will make better leaders in many instances than many males have done and are doing (not just in the black community), and I suspect that our kids would be a lot further ahead if it had not been for the failures of black male leadership!

One of the saddest things that I ever witnessed was when I visited a church in the Almaden Valley in California. The pastor was retiring after 50 years of service. His wife was invited to the pulpit to have remarks. She said, that in 50 years I have never stood in this pulpit or the pulpit of the former church that we built. And now, she went on to say, my son is taking over. I thought, my God this woman has sat out there on the front pew supporting this man for 50 years, changing their sons diapers in the interim and raising him up so that he could take over! Hmm, 'that ain't right'!!!

Peace & Grace
Reverend C. Solomon

Addenda: I will fill in the substance later, it was on my mind so I simply wrote about what I was thinking about! BTW, Jesse Jackson, Dr. MLK and the Civil Rights leaders are not the leaders that I am talking about, black males as a hiostircal collective cohort group are the ones that I am talking about that failed.

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