Friday, June 20, 2008

What Other Folks Are Saying

What Deesha Said

In "Spare the Rod, Get Your Black Card Taken," Anti-Racist Parent columnist Deesha Philyaw takes a stand for black parents who choose not to spank their children.
A black comedian riffs on the subject of parenthood on BET’s late-night laughfest, "ComicView:"

“You wanna know the difference between black parents and white parents?” he begins. “In public, white kids…embarrass they parents. Black parents…”

The 99% black audience chuckles with anticipation.

“… embarrass they kids.”

While the audience erupts with knowing laughter, the comedian demonstrates the
stereotypical white child screaming, “Mother, I hate you!” at the permissive white mother; versus the loud, no-nonsense way the stereotypical black mother corrals her kids with threats (”Girl, I’ll knock you into next week”) and a ready backhand (or shoe).

The comedian offered this as a universal truth:

Black parents don’t play. Black parents don’t believe in “time out.” Black parents spank their kids.

Except some of us don’t.

That’s it. That’s my dirty little secret. I’m a black mother who doesn’t spank her kids. Read more...

What Jennifer Said

Over at Mixed Race America, In the post "I Do," Jennifer eloquently explains why California's decision to overturn the ban against same-sex marriages should be celebrated not just as a victory for gay rights, but as the triumph of basic human rights.

Have you ever noticed that people hate being told that they can't do something? Little kids know this all too well; they hear "no" from adults (particularly their parents). And I think that as we grow up, we often retain the knee jerk reaction of hearing "no" because it feels as if someone is infantalizing us or controlling us.And if you add on irrational prejudices as the rationale for why we are told no, well I think very few of us would be able to keep our tempers. And yet, the truth is, so many people for such a long time in our nation's history have been told "No."

*Women were once told they couldn't vote.
*African Americans were once told where they had to sit using public transportation.
*American Indians were once told where they could live.
*People of different races were once told they could not marry.

If you have never known what it's like to be told "no" as an adult--just stop and think for a minute what it would be like to have something that seems so fundamental to everyone else--like the right to vote, the right to public transportation, the right to live where you choose, the right to marry--and imagine if someone said, "Sorry--everyone else can do these things, but based on this one part of who you are, we're barring you."

Which is why I'm calling attention, again, to how great and yet how ordinary California's recent decision to overturn the gay marriage ban is--how great and ordinary the recent weddings that are taking place all over California truly are. Read more...


Anonymous said...

My issue with both sides of this debate is the assertion that there is only one way to deal with every child. Yes I got spanked and I got punished and sent to the corner as well. You deal with the individual child in the way that they need when they need it. For example, I was pretty hard headed and came to my mom when I wanted to when she called my name. She popped me because we (my mom and my 2 other siblings) rode the bus back and forth around the ATL. If there is a speeding car my mom needed me to come to her when she called my name. That was not up for negotiation because that was about my LIFE. Most times I was punished. You do NOT lose your black card for not spanking your kid. But if you are begging your kid to do something that a blind person could see may be critical ie. coming to you, responding to your voice immediately, not just wandering away but making an effort to keep up with mom and dad etc. then yes, if that parent feels the kid needs to be popped on the behind, not beat, not abused, but popped on the behind, I say yes - do it, explain why you are doing it, and do it without malice. With parenting there is no rule book. I wish both sides of the table would get it and this debate, which is silly, would end.

Nikita said...

Hello there!

Thanks for this! I saw the post on that website ...because of you...and it was interesting!

I left a comment there.

I would NOT spank my children but I would give out punishments....{shrugs}

Physical confrontations are not necessary in order to have the respect of your children.

Thanks for letting me blow my trumpet!


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