NO, ANDREW SULLIVAN, 70% OF BLACK KIDS AREN’T FATHERLESS
By Erin White
September 21, 2019
Appearing on Real Time: With Bill Maher’s Overtime last night, journalist Andrew Sullivan showed his ASS by insisting that 70 percent of Black children are born without a father. Not without an actively involved father — without a father, period. Seemingly a confused reference to the statistic that 72 percent of Black children are born to parents who aren’t married, the conservative writer went on to say: “There is a real problem in African-American society with bringing up kids.”
A stereotype that white racists (covert and otherwise) love to use when discussing Black issues, claiming the majority of Black kids are fatherless is simply untrue. In reality, MOST Black fathers live with their children. According to the CDC, 2.5 million Black fathers in fact, while 1.7 don’t. The CDC also claims that, on average, Black fathers who live with their children are actually the most involved fathers of all.
But white people love perpetuating the myth that Black people can’t raise family, take care of themselves, or be responsible citizens.
When, in reality, it’s white boys and men, who are walking into elementary schools, churches, synagogues, mosques, movie theaters, Wal-Marts, shopping malls, offices, college campuses, bars, concerts, pretty much anywhere, to blow people’s heads off. When are we going to ask white parents — who, apparently, are right there at home — why they can’t raise children?
If we want to talk about the 72 percent of Black children born into single-parent households, we can do so. But in doing so, we must also acknowledge the fact that does not suggest that Black dads are absent. Simply unmarried. And we must look to the research social scientists have done to debunk the myth that two parents are always better than one. When in reality, the issue is more about class, economics, access, and education than it is about the number of adults in the room.
“This belief that two parents are always better than one is reinforced by our economic and social welfare systems, which make it extremely difficult for women with children to survive on their own[…]
Houses headed by single mothers are not the root of the problem. At issue are the material conditions that children in poor single-parent families often face. Surely factors such as inadequate (and disappearing) welfare provisions, a racist and classist public school system and lack of affordable housing need to be considered. By touting fathers as the solution to the problems that black people face, Mr. Herbert proposes an inexpensive solution to a problem of vast proportions and lets government off the hook.”
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