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The Black Cornerempty posted on: 2.02
Mike Ramey Mike Ramey
The Year Black Men Stopped Apologizing!
by Mike Ramey The Manhoodline
some text

Brothers, here are four things I have yet to see in print, on the Internet, or in the mainstream press--even in many of our so-called African-American publications: 

*I have yet to see some Black woman--married or single--of wealth, power, publicity or prestige offer an apology to the Black men that they have wronged, stepped on, seduced, or stepped over in their quest to 'discover' themselves, 'empower' themselves, get an 'education' or 'enrich' themselves on their way 'up';

 *I have yet to see some of our young Black boys offer an apology to their fathers, uncles, or other elders for not heeding their advice, prayers, or counsel, in their quest to become Rap stars, jailbirds, or high school, or college dropouts;

 *I have yet to see some of our young Black girls offer an apology to their fathers, uncles, or other elders for not heeding their advice, prayers, or counsel in their quest to become Hood rats, Rap video zombies, jailbirds, high school, or college drop outs; 

*Lastly, I have yet to see some single parents of today offer an apology to their fathers, uncles, other elders, or the community at large for not marrying the father of their children, for not securing an education, nor for taking responsibility for their own households--regardless of their economic lot in life. 

Now, lest you think that I am demanding an apology from each of these groups, you are dead wrong. But, 

I have grown weary of sources--from the mainstream press to rabid feminists to social conservatives--demanding that every Black Man apologize for real or perceived wrongs. 

The brotherhood is not demanding apologies. However, we are seeking that the aforementioned groups take a good look at themselves, before they open their mouths, or take their cues from their bitter, cynical, and money-worshipping friends.

Check yourselves. Some of you have already wrecked yourselves, and seek to blame Black Men for the aftermath of your own selfish, and ungodly decisions.

I'm not saying that WE are perfect, nor that all among us are 100 percent right. However, I do maintain that WE, as Black Men, are NOT ALL 100 percent WRONG because of the actions, antics, and attitudes of some among us. In short, if EVERYONE is human, and can make mistakes; why are Black Men's shortcomings on Page One everyday, and no one else (to read, see, and hear from their own publications and lips) seems to fall into the 'human' category?

There were several items that kicked my switch to do this column for Black History Month. They can all be tied to the so-called apology, or 'atonement' movement that has been criss-crossing our college and university campuses; our media offerings, and even our nation as a whole. Let me say that this 'movement' is unholy, unbiblical, and certainly without true, logical thought and merit.

As the New Year dawned, I saw yet ANOTHER letter from a brother, written to Black women, apologizing for perceived wrongs done to them by the brotherhood. I have seen several of these letters over the years, and heard of other writers who have done such things, or demanded that the brotherhood stop using their brains and just 'accept' the fact that WE have been wrong about EVERYTHING.

Sorry, but it won't wash with me. Why? Because 

An apology is MEANT to be an INDIVIDUAL matter between INDIVIDUALS.

In other words, if I have wronged someone, it is up to me to settle the matter with that individual. On the other side of the coin, if someone has wronged me, it is up to them to come to me, apologize, and set things right. That's the true and normal nature of an apology. From a biblical perspective, using the New Testament as a base, one should not even TRY to put a tithe, or offering on God's altar IF they have not 'fessed up' to a wrong committed against another individual.

No one--repeat, NO ONE--can apologize FOR you, IF YOU have done nothing wrong! And, as to the matter of 'atonement'--this was taken care of on a hill called Calvary, by Jesus Christ, Himself. Not in a march, and certainly not in a video. On Calvary, once and for all! This is upheld in the Scriptures. This is upheld in the realm of common sense. This is upheld in the arena of business.

Then, why isn't it practiced in everyday living by scores of literate, or illiterate motormouths; some of whom have a few letters after their names, or a talk show, or a book deal?

The reason why it's not practiced in the course of everyday living is that many folks have become conditioned by their own selfishness NOT to accept responsibility for their OWN actions. Far too many people, in the aforementioned groups, are actively engaged in the 'shame, blame and maintain' game. They demand an apology without taking a look into the mirror of life, and realizing that they also had a role in their own rebellion.

Never heard of that one? Here's how this 'new' game is played.

A girl decides that she wants to go out into the streets and 'get her roll on' and winds up pregnant, over the advice of her father and mother. She chooses NOT to marry the father of her child, so she SHAMES her parents and extended family into taking care of her out-of-wedlock child while she continues to 'party' with a capital P. A few years pass. Next, instead of going after a GED, attending night school, or going to college--her lifestyle has exacted a burden in her life--that out-of-wedlock child. So, she BLAMES her parent, or parents, much to the applause of her 'friends'. A few more years pass and her economic lot in life is sealed. In the final act of this 'new' game, she demands an apology; a tribute; some sacrifice be paid to her in order for her to MAINTAIN her rebellious lifestyle, even though it is destructive to her, her child (or children at this time), and her family name.

NOW you've heard of it. You just didn't know WHAT to call it.

Brothers, we need to stop apologizing for doing the RIGHT things in life, and continue to warn people about their actions. Let them live in their consequences, and perhaps they will see that they NEED to take RESPONSIBILITY for themselves.

There is much good being accomplished among the brotherhood; IF folks would turn off the talk shows, put down the remote, silence their 'sistahfriends', and open their eyes! Don't believe the HYPE!

*If you are a married man Black Man, and are doing all you can to love, cherish, and care for your wife and family; you have no need to apologize for someone else's failures, nor cover for someone else's sins.

 *If you are a single Black Man and are doing your best to secure decent grades, not birth babies out of wedlock, and are getting yourself ready before seeking a wife, why apologize for someone else's shortcomings, actions, and attitudes?

 *Lastly, if you are a Black Man in leadership; who loves God, the Bible, the church and upright living without taking shortcuts, you are worthy of the title of 'Prophet, Priest, and King'. Yes, Black Men--like other men--are 'Prophets, Priests, and Kings'.

And, like it or not sisters; If you regard yourself as a 'Queen', you have to give a 'King' his due! That's the truth, the whole truth, and the ugly truth! If you REFUSE to let men lead; if you REFUSE to let men do their jobs and fulfill their DESTINIES; if you block your father, cuss out your elders, and nullify your husband, sisters, there is a heavy penalty to pay. Bitterness, sarcasm, fearfulness, lack of finances, substance abuse and a shortage of quality friends is only the tip of the payback iceberg! You may have lots of company, but it won't be the type of company that will build you--it will be the kiss of death on your growth as a person of character!

Brothers, we need to start--and continue--to hold our heads up the entire year, and not just during one month of the year. The concept of a 'blanket' apology is lame at worst, and idiotic at best.

Let's follow this line of thought for a moment.

If I were to accept this 'social' monstrosity, it would mean that my wife would owe me an apology for every other woman who has wronged me before, and after we got married; and vice versa. Blanket apologies do little to get to the heart of the matter. It gives one a false sense of security. 

A public show DOES NOT ALWAYS MEAN there is private repentance!

And, as we have seen demonstrated from some of those in politics, one can shed a tear and apologize on cue, but not mean a single thing they say.

This Black History Month should mark a time of celebration among the brotherhood. Not because we have arrived, but we have made TOO MUCH PROGRESS as Black Men to be 'stunted' by random catcalls for blanket apologies and meaningless atonement.

We've survived, thrived, and grown by the grace of God. Our economic gains in 400 short years are the stuff of legend. Our heritage is living history. Folks are finally realizing that the middle east--including Africa--holds the key to the economic stability of the planet, along with untold energy and wealth reserves.

Brothers, our course is set, and our progress is marked, documented, and growing. Celebrate the Kings that you are. Not the pawns society seeks us to become. 

You can't have true Black History, without noting the accomplishments of Black Men--unless you don't want to see who we are, or what we have done.

Let the critics fire away; the truth will always stand!

Our motto this month; and throughout the year should be:

" FORWARD, Black Man, FORWARD! Onward tis' the sound of the battled dawn! We will not fear; we are still here! From sunrise to sunset; a King has his duty clear--
over the lack of those who may cheer!"

Happy Black History--Year!

Mike Ramey is the author of "The Manhood Line" a column written monthly for men from a biblical, business, and common-sense perspective. To correspond, drop an email to
Copyright Mike Ramey/Barnstorm Communications. The opinions expressed are those of the author and are used by permission.

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