Warning: The Following Column May Contain Language Unsuitable For Some
of “The Manhood Line”
As this column closes in on its ten-year anniversary mark, there is still
much ground to cover, and issues to be brought before the brotherhood. You
see, no matter how saved, sanctified, and full of the Holy Ghost one may profess
being; no matter how many ‘Million’ marches one has attended; no
matter how many protests one has initiated; no matter where one stands on the
abortion issue, one does not have to go too far down the street to ‘bump’ into
a child born outside of wedlock.
The biblical term for such a child is ‘bastard’--but I digress.
According to a report issued by the National Center for Health Statistics
in October 2005, a record number out-of-wedlock births--nearly 1.5 million--were
born to unmarried women in the United States in 2004. Once more, those births
make up more than 35 percent of ALL domestic births. The increases in these
births--according to published reports--are taking place among women in their
20s, the age range in which fertility in women is at its highest. Teen mothers
made up slightly less than 25 percent of those births, meaning that the births--for
the most part--happened to WOMEN who KNEW what they were DOING and did not
want to marry.
Now, let us be clear here. ANY child BORN OUTSIDE of the bonds of marriage--no
matter the technology used or the rationalization put forth--is still an out
of wedlock child. Such children used to be tagged as ‘illegitimate’.
However, because more and more women of money and influence have been birthing
them, they have lost that social stigma by being ‘renamed’.
THE RENAME GAME:
Years ago, there was a song that made a huge impact on the R & B charts
called: “The Name Game”. These days, we are surrounded by people,
pressure groups, and a gullible mainstream press anxiously specializing in
the ‘Rename Game’; whereby words that have a certain truth attached
to them, like ‘Adultery’, are repackaged and renamed in order to
remove some of their sting, like the ‘Affair’ instead of the ‘Adulterous
Of course, you may change the word, but you can’t hide the guilt, nor
the final result of the sin. In terms of an illegitimate child, the child may
be ‘called’ an out-of-wedlock child, but it will still be regarded
as a ‘bastard’ by society.
Even if that child is carrying the mother’s name.
Another victim of the ‘rename’ game has been the truth. There
have been MANY instances where a man has learned that he is the father of a
child--and wants to MARRY the mother. Unfortunately, she would rather have
her ‘independence’ (and a healthy dose of child support) to ‘battle
on’ in a cruel world, rather than give in to tradition and take the man’s
name--ring and all--and give her child what he/she truly needs.
May I be bold here? The hardheaded actions of some women have contributed
to the fatherless dilemma as equally as the absence of some men. I know I’m
going to get some Bmails on this, but hear me out. There may be some disappearing
daddies on the OOW issue; but there are just as many vanishing mommies on the
scales as well.
This is one truth that will not survive ‘renaming’.
BUILD THE CHILD:
There is a solution to the problem and it rests with having the wisdom to confront
this issue head on, instead of continuing to sidestep it. The brotherhood
has to help push child-building, instead of child-raising. We need to stop
letting people ‘raise’ children, and teach them how to BUILD
children into successful children…and later dynamic, functioning adults.
To be honest, child raising isn’t working among OOW kids for a variety
of reasons. First, the mothers who birth these bastards have no firm foundation
themselves. IF they did--they would have WAITED until they got MARRIED to have
children. Second, the child(ren) do not have a firm foundation, because the
mother spends most of her time putting the child(ren) into ‘programs’ rather
than getting her home in order to build her OWN children. Lastly, the community
doesn’t have a firm foundation of relationship with the OOW child, because
the mother is spending too much time ‘justifying’ or ‘covering’ her
having the child in the first place. If the community does see them, it is
either a quick ‘hi’ and ‘bye’ or appeals for help in
the form of money, clothes, childcare, or college scholarships.
You can only ‘raise’ something once it is assumed, and declared
However, one can BUILD something up, layer upon layer; precept upon precept.
Since I’m heading for a close, here are two of the four keys to get
the building process started--or, I should say re-started--in many of our communities.
NEVER are members of the brotherhood to hate on these children, or their mother.
WE need to be the first on the scene to help them out when we can.
However, let me put forth what Mama needs to do, too:
FIRST: A respect for TRUTH in the CHILD must be BUILT by getting the ‘Where’s
Daddy’ issue confessed and dealt with PERIOD. Mama MUST get this matter
settled within the child as early as they can be made to understand. This ALSO
means that a caravan of men CAN NOT be in and out of the home while children
are in it, and UPRIGHT sisters need to ‘school’ a woman in getting
back on the right route.
SECOND: Mama needs to be ENCOURAGED by the BROTHERHOOD to re-introduce herself
to the Bible and the Church and STICK WITH IT through thick and thin. As she
grows in this area, her child(ren) will grow in grace as well. THIS is going
to take some true time for healing, as more than a few sisters have been ‘wronged’ by
DOGS posing as MEN in the Church house! True Christian men are protectors of
women and children, not predators on them!
In reality, there are already grown men who are the products of single parent
homes, who have never had a brother in their lives to steer them the right
way. They have become stunted in their relations with other men because they
have not gotten over the hurt from their pasts. Some of them are behind our
MIKE RAMEY is the author of THE MANHOOD LINE. A syndicated, monthly
column written for men from a biblical, business, and common sense perspective.
It appears on fine websites around the world. Emails, Bmails and Pmails are welcomed
to the following address: email@example.com.
©2005 Mike Ramey/Barnstorm Communications International.
Used by permission, BlackandChristian.com, 2005.