Sunday, November 27, 2011

Why Many Black Women are Succeeding

I started thinking today about why many Black women are succeeding today and many men are not. Some of the reasons apply women of other ethnicities as well because women in most Western countries and Asia are doing better while men are doing worse. There are many reasons why these things happened but if men want to do better, they may have to take an example from women.

  1. Women figured out that education was the great equalizer and a worthwhile pursuit. They believe that having an education or expertise in a field is the best (of course not guaranteed) way to ensure that they will obtain a stable, white-collar career. I think that this is the safe route because once you have the knowledge and degree it can not be taken away and usually you have transferable skills that can be used for many different careers. These women knew realistically that they were more likely to become teachers, social workers or bankers than musicians, actors, or professional athletes. Unfortunately, many men  now devalue education and waste their time trying (often with little effort) to become musicians, actors, and professional athletes (sometimes they use athletics to get into college, but their grades are usually poor, and their goal is to become an athlete not some other professional). Instead of staying home and doing schoolwork they are on the street, playing video games or basketball, and listening to and writing rap lyrics.  Women developed realistic goals and plans that included education while men developed unrealistic plans that did not require education.
  2. Women stay away from crime. Women do commit crimes, but they do it at a much lower rate than men. I don't know why a woman can be poor and struggle to get by without becoming a criminal but it's harder for men to do so. Men will say there is pressure from their peers or pressure to have money so that they can attract women. Is it impossible to choose new friends and attract women in another way, especially when you are young? For some men who live in dangerous neighbourhoods they may also be dragged into gang activity to avoid being a victim. I understand that. But if you don't come from a dangerous neighbourhood what is your excuse? How is it that some men withstand the pressure? It really seems like the nerdy guys who keep out of trouble are the real men with backbones because they don't cave to peer pressure and become gangsters. 
  3. Women fight to be a part of the system. This is a big one in the Black community. Many Black people are angry about racism, discrimination, and they history of slavery. Black women have chosen to fight for their place in the system, play the game, and win a good life even if racists don't want them to. This is the 'if life gives you lemons, make lemonade' attitude and they are attempting to adapt to whatever situation they have been placed in. The women know the odds will sometimes be against them, but they learn the rules of the game, follow the rules, and try to succeed anyway. From things I have been reading online, many men disagree with this strategy, and I believe these men are dangerous and to be avoided. These men believe that any cooperation with the system is a betrayal of Black people and reject the notion of working or being educated in the system. They see a life of crime as a way of fighting the system, they reject public education, and choose to self-educate by using questionable and often dangerous sources. These men (seriously) believe that they are in some sort of Matrix, eventually everyone will wake up, and they will be the leaders in some sort of race war! When this war starts they plan to punish anyone in the system, including successful Black women who they call traitors. I don't think I have to tell you how unrealistic and scary this militia, Black man rising, conspiracy thinking is but these beliefs are FREQUENTLY and CASUALLY mentioned by men online as though this war is inevitable and they will be the last ones to laugh and judge Black women when it happens. Scary right? 
  4. Black women are living in the present not the past. One strange thing I have noticed online is the way men keep bringing up slavery to explain why they are not succeeding today and why they are not getting along with some Black women. I know when I started reading Black history I was so angry at the world and it made me want to reject everything that was not Black. It was a phase. I eventually realized that the people around me did not commit the crimes of slavery (especially since I live in Canada). I know racism exists and sometimes people are ignorant, but the people around me were not my slave masters! I was never enslaved and neither was anyone alive today nor their parents or grandparents. No one raped me or sold members of my family away from me. I never though I'd have to say this but slavery is in the past and you have to move on and adapt to your current circumstances. You can not live in the past so somehow men have to disengage these feelings that slavery happened to them personally and there is some conspiracy to hold you back. Yes, the system is biased against Black people but is rejecting the system actually working for you? Reparations are not coming and they probably won't help your situation anyway. Dreaming about revenge for past wrongs (or recent injustices) is holding you back from making the most of your present.
  5. Black women are self-sufficient. Yes it's true, Black women and many women today are independent and that has helped us to succeed. Even the woman who goes on welfare is being self-sufficient in a way. She found out about an available resource and obtained it instead of laying down and dying. When men walk out on their children women take on the responsibility of being the sole care giver and do the best they can. Other women had the self-discipline to work hard in school, graduate, and have a career. They provided food, clothing, and shelter for themselves instead of waiting for a man to give it to them. Men have always been able to put their needs first but for some reason many want women to put men's needs first too! They claim to be strong but they are asking successful women to "invest" in them so that they can succeed. They blame the single mother for not being the best mother possible even though she had no help from the father! That's like a man giving a woman a 100 pound bag to carry and criticizing her for not walking as fast as when they were both sharing the bag! I wonder if these men would go after their kids if the women gave them up for adoption or the foster care system? I doubt it. Caring for your child is the same as caring for yourself! If you are not caring for your child then you are not self-sufficient!  
  6. Black women take responsibility for their lives. This ties into the notion that women are self-sufficient. Successful women don't expect anyone to take care of them or give them handouts but they do expect men to take care of their children and carry their own weight. It seems like men expect the opposite. They resent any notion that the woman should consider a man's finances before getting into a relationship. Can you imagine, a Black women who will only marry a man if he can provide enough money to care for a middle-class child is called a goldigger!? If you think you can survive only on love then I doubt you are self-sufficient and know the costs of supporting a family. But, as I heard in a YouTube video today, some men think the woman's role is to be a man's helper to help him achieve his goals while his role is to lead her to do whatever he decides she should do!? Yes, he said the Bible says that's the way it's supposed to be (glad I'm not religious). He said his role is to replace his wife's father and she is there to serve him. Why is it that men need so much help and support to do things? Why are women able to just get up and do what needs to be done? These men complain that everyone needs to change without taking any responsibility for their role in ruining their own lives. They blame racist employers for not hiring some Black men while ignoring the fact that they are untrustworthy ex-cons with no education. They blame women's high standards and attitudes for the low marriage rates when it's the men who decided to use, abuse, and not marry them. They blame the school system for not educating Black boys when they chose to skip school, not do the work, or get kicked out while others succeed. This is the most ridiculous one: They blame a corrupt justice system for locking up Black men while completely ignoring the fact that almost all of these men are GUILTY of some crime including murder, rape, and drug dealing! Why they were profiled or unfair sentencing is secondary to the FACT that these men are GUILTY! They blame Black women for the problems in the Black community with no reference to their role in the problems at all. 
So, to any woman or man who wants to be successful, here is my advice: Get an education, stay away from crime, fight to be a part of the system, live in the present not the past, be self-sufficient, and take responsibility for your actions. Doing otherwise doesn't seem to be working.


  1. Great article! As a man, I think you provide a lot of food for thought here. I know that I, personally, I need to focus on learning more skills and getting more education for my future. I've known for a while but actually doing it at a reasonable speed is another matter. Also, with your point about trying to be a part of the system, I think people need to realize that some sort of economic system involving government and bureaucrats is conducive to getting things done and helping a society produce enough stuff to be prosperous.

  2. *(continued)

    It may be valid to want to be a part of any particular system but one should try to be a part of at least some system. If not in the country of one's birth, then somewhere on the planet. Anyway, thanks for the post.

  3. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you a 1,000 times for this article. I recently discovered your blog and i love it. I sometimes don't agree with everything you say but respect and love different point of views and ideas. I have learned much from ur site because of this. You are on point with article and i agree completely.

  4. Hi Anonymous,

    Thank you for your comment. Lol, yes there is no way everyone will agree with everything I say and I might disagree with myself in a few years lol! As I learn and experience more I'm sure I will change but this is all about exploring what I'm thinking now and I'll see if those thoughts are helpful, harmful, or just innacurate. I'm glad you enjoyed this post though and I hope that Black women are not deterred from their path to success by naysayers :)