Showing posts with label illegitimacy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label illegitimacy. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Baby Diddy

Only Nixon could go to China, and only Baba Wawa could ask The Artist Formerly Known as Puff Daddy why he can be a baby Diddy five times over, but never a real, live, married-to-his-baby-mama -- any of the three -- father.

That's a question P. Diddy still is trying not to answer a day and a half later.

The hemming and hawing went something like this, as reported by the
Daily Mail in London:
"Why I'm not married yet, I don't have the exact reason. Some things in life you don't have the exact reason.

"My father was killed when I was three years old... I never got a chance to see the way a family lives, but I'm not making an excuse."

Not satisfied with his answer, Walters further inquired, "Six children by three women, how much time do you need?"

Diddy cut her off saying: "I get to spend a lot of time with my children. Everybody has a different life. Mine and your life is totally different.

"That's the way it is. My life works for me, it works for my family."

He added: "They have no cavities... and they pray every night."

Diddy is the biological father of five and he is the informal stepfather of another child.

GOOD THING she didn't ask him about that $360,000 first car he gave his 16-year-old:
In July, Diddy called British journalist Martin Bashir a racist, after Bashir grilled the rapper during an interview on Nightline about the star's lavish lifestyle and gifting his son Justin with a $360,000 Maybach car for his 16 birthday.

"There were times in the interview when I had to give him a ultimatum, the questions weren’t being handled the right way,' Diddy explained afterwards.

"In hindsight when I saw him I shouldn’t had done the interview because I know the style of interview that he does. The whole thing about giving a Maybach to my son, that’s really like a racist question.

"You don’t ask white people what they buy their kids and they buy ‘em Porsches and convertible Bentleys and it’s no question.

It’s really a racist question and put things back in perspective with money and the way that people still look at you. And I’m not saying that consciously he’s a racist.

"But he probably don’t even realize that he would not ask Steve Jobs that. He would be like Steve Jobs has that money and that’s the gift his kid is supposed to get."
OH . . . Diddy didn't give a straight answer to the baby-daddy question when Bashir asked it, either.

This after Bashir reminded Diddy of having said he wanted to be "someone that kids want to emulate."

Yeah, there was a racist lurking in that interview, and it wasn't Martin Bashir.

Some African-American (and other) thinkers have argued that most blacks cannot be racist because racism presupposes the power to act upon one's racial prejudices. All right, then, who has the power here?

Martin Bashir, salaried TV journalist? Or Sean "Puff Daddy-P. Diddy" Combs, hip-hop media and marketing mogul?

If Bashir went on national television and screamed the N-word for three days straight, the only life he would be destroying would be his own. He'd be fired. He'd be ridiculed. He'd be shamed. He'd be shunned.

He. Would. Never. Work. Again. (Or at least for a long while.)

BUT WHEN DIDDY -- he who seeks to be emulated -- goes around siring children by multiple women, without marrying any of them, he sets a standard that has been proven socioeconomically toxic to the very people he'd most like to "emulate" him.

When Diddy plays hip-hop mogul, peddling a violent, misogynistic and ubermaterialistic subculture to young people who least need any more violence, misogyny or materialism shoved into their minds, he blows more toxic cultural gas toward the canaries in the American coal mine.

And when Diddy proclaims he's an adequate father to the fruit of all his "baby mamas'" wombs because he shoves some serious cash -- or a Maybach automobile -- at them every now and again, he gives yet another oversexed lout in some American inner city yet another excuse for not acting like a man.

Or acting like a father.

Without the means -- or the tools to acquire the means -- to bandage over the psychic wounds of little children with Benjamins. Or Maybachs.

DAVID DUKE couldn't have hoped to "accomplish" as much in a million white-supremacist years. That's why the ol' neo-Nazi needed a little Diddy magic.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Fair is fair. But society isn't.

Rod Dreher over at Crunchy Con posts the following points about "white privilege" sent in by a reader of his. I'm ashamed to say that, in reading the post, I was taken aback that I hadn't even considered some of it before.

TO SHOWCASE just one example, what about Bristol Palin getting knocked up by her "f***in redneck" boyfriend, and how, if the young couple were black, we'd be clucking about "social mayhem" and the problem of black illegitimacy. Which we would.

Is it a problem that we
don't see preggers Bristol and her ruffian baby daddy as some sort of baby-mama ho and her white-trash Tupac? Do the daughters of GOP vice-presidential candidates have a higher class of unplanned, unwed pregnancy?

Or is it a problem that we've become conditioned to see just about every unwed black mother and her baby daddy as just that, almost without exception?

MAYBE THE PROBLEM is both. That we're too quick to overlook the forces of social disruption lying at the heart of every white Romeo and Juliet and too quick to condemn African-American kids when they do the same damned thing.

No difference in the offense. Big difference in white society's perception. And that's flat-out wrong.

Not to mention racist.

Anyway, here's part of what Crunchy Con posted. Go read the rest . . . and cringe as you do:
For those who still can't grasp the concept of white privilege, or who are constantly looking for some easy-to-understand examples of it, perhaps this list will help. White privilege is when you can get pregnant at seventeen like Bristol Palin and everyone is quick to insist that your life and that of your family is a personal matter, and that no one has a right to judge you or your parents, because "every family has challenges," even as black and Latino families with similar "challenges" are regularly typified as irresponsible, pathological and arbiters of social decay. White privilege is when you can call yourself a "f**kin' redneck," like Bristol Palin's boyfriend does, and talk about how if anyone messes with you, you'll "kick their f**kin' ass," and talk about how you like to "shoot s**t" for fun, and still be viewed as a responsible, all-American boy (and a great son-in-law to be) rather than a thug. White privilege is when you can attend four different colleges in six years like Sarah Palin did (one of which you basically failed out of, then returned to after making up some coursework at a community college), and no one questions your intelligence or commitment to achievement, whereas a person of color who did this would be viewed as unfit for college, and probably someone who only got in in the first place because of affirmative action.

White privilege is when you can claim that being mayor of a town smaller than most medium-sized colleges, and then Governor of a state with about the same number of people as the lower fifth of the island of Manhattan, makes you ready to potentially be president, and people don't all piss on themselves with laughter, while being a black U.S. Senator, two-term state Senator, and constitutional law scholar, means you're "untested."

Monday, March 31, 2008

Why do you think they call it 'screwed'?

The woebegone account that follows,
as published Sunday in the Omaha World-Herald, might be the most depressing -- and infuriating -- thing you read all day. Consider this fair warning.

Now, on to a tale of complete cultural meltdown:

Both Keyana and her mom, Samona Jones, were pregnant before high school. Samona was 13; Keyana, 14.

Samona dropped out of eighth grade, never married and had more babies.

Keyana adores her mom but dreams of a different life. She wants to travel. Move to a bigger city. Maybe become a lawyer.

She can't do that with a house full of kids.

"Who's got my brush?" Samona yells.

Today mom and daughter are both getting ready.

Keyana is taking daughter Lauren for her 18-month well checkup.

Samona also is seeing a doctor. She's 31 and soon to deliver her 12th child.


And more than 75 percent of blacks in Douglas County who gave birth were not married. That compares with 24 percent for whites and about 49 percent for Hispanics.

In 2002, the most recent year for which comparisons are available, the Omaha area ranked seventh worst in teen births among blacks. More than 22 percent of blacks who had babies were teens, a share that beat New Orleans and Chicago.

Of about 800 births to Douglas County teens in 2007, 36 percent, or 283, were to black teens. Overall, the county's population is about 13 percent black.

Says Charles Murray of the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research: "As long as half of black families with children under 18 are headed by a lone female and as long as a quarter of young black males who are out of prison and out of school are not even looking for work, the poverty numbers for blacks are not going to come down much, no matter how good the economy is and no matter what new social programs the politicians try."

Teenage pregnancy has become so accepted, sometimes even planned, that a counseling center in north Omaha dropped crisis from its name. Ads now emphasize its quality medical professionals.
I DON'T THINK you can overstress how dysfunctional every aspect of life has become among this country's underclass. Of course, it always has been thus. Now it's that and the kitchen sink.

Not only that, but I don't think you can overstress how it also undermines the foundations of the larger society. For example, the popular culture's glorification -- in its never-ending quest for "edginess," fashion points and amoral profit -- of the "gangsta" and hip-hop culture.

To an extent, the relative wealth of "middle-class, white America" counteracts some of the worst consequences of a chaotic embrace of thuggery, baby-mamas and baby-daddies. But it can't not steadily undermine those things that make a bourgeois life possible in a modern society -- self-restraint, education, a strong work ethic, the support of a relatively cohesive family unit.

Sooner or later, with the foundation undermined, our societal house will collapse upon itself. It can't not happen.

Again, from the World-Herald:
The Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy reports that a baby is nine times more likely to grow up poor if mom is unmarried, a teen and a high school dropout than if none of those factors exists.

Bottom line, says the Children's Defense Fund, odds are greater that poor children will lag in health and educational achievement. They're more likely to get in trouble with the law.

Omaha suffers from a toxic poverty blend that goes beyond money woes, said Franklin Thompson, a city councilman who teaches about race at the University of Nebraska at Omaha.

He said the black community is gripped by a "culture of poverty" in which the so-called gangsta side of hip-hop marketing brainwashes youngsters into believing, for example, that speaking intelligently is "acting white."

So encompassing is the culture that those in it settle for less and adapt to an underclass lifestyle, Thompson said.

A strong generation of upwardly mobile minorities could help reverse such self-destruction with role modeling.

But, Thompson said, "Omaha lacks a sizable homegrown black middle class to help mentor children and undo some of the damage that has been done."
WHEN FACED WITH the complete collapse of a social structure -- when deviance become normative, in societal terms -- it seems to me that we have nothing in our secular civic or governmental toolboxes that can effectively address the problem.

We are shooting spitballs at Godzilla. All we can do -- even with model public-policy initiatives, superior schools and effective social-welfare programs -- is chip away at the edges of intractable poverty and deviance. Through heroic effort, both by the community at large and by the striving poor themselves, a few might be saved from the abyss.

And there goes Tokyo. Still.

Of course, it nevertheless is the duty of the larger society -- despite the grave challenges -- to make the effort. It's our duty to provide social services, formulate better policies and provide first-rate public schools.

It's our duty to do that if only a single child, in the end, might escape to a better life. But we have to recognize it's not enough. Our best social-welfare and policy tools can, at best, only provide a firm foundation for some future "killer application."

IRONICALLY, that "killer app"-- the societal "troop surge," if you will -- is the only weapon we have left . . . or at least the only one we have left with wonder-working power.

It's the "blood of the Lamb." It's a massive outpouring of the Holy Spirit. It's that whole triune God thing, via its local distributor, the church.

If it's sin that makes you stupid -- and I think rutting like jackrabbits out of wedlock historically has been considered sinful, not to mention societally disruptive -- we need something that overcomes the power of sin. I humbly would submit that's the power of God.

And, unfortunately, that's about the most unacceptable notion of all in these troubled times. Even within large swaths of the church itself, alas.

I LOOK AT the sad example of Keyana and Samona Jones, and I am tempted to think all is lost. That there is no hope.

But on the other hand, I also am fairly confident that the seemingly hopeless conundrum of our inner cities could be brought to heel in a generation or two. All we would need is a sizable number of Jesuits under the age of 90 who still believed in a God that actually mattered.

We're screwed.

Barring a miracle, of course. Fortunately, as an Easter people, miracles are something we have come to rely upon . . . and regularly receive.