The Regrets of a School Dropout: Half of Black Males Fail to Graduate With Their Class

More bad news when it comes tothe state of black males.  When I read this article in the Washington Post, I became angry.  I was angry because as a community, we have dropped the ball on these black boys.  This 19 y/o boy had crappy ass parents.  Both of his parents were high school drop outs.  His mother abandoned him; his father in and out of jail; both live out of state his and aunt and grandmother were forced to raise him.

He dropped out of high school and is now trying to get his GED.  But what this shows is the vicious cycle of what happens when people fall victim to cultural conditioning.  It might not have been started by black people, but we have internailzed it and it spread through our community like a plauge. So what now?

I almost pushed my monitor on the floor when I read that in 2003-2004 46% of black males dropped out of high school.  And in my county (Prince George’s County),  where we always like to boast that we have the highest population and concentration of educated middle class black people, the drop out rate for black males in 2003-2004 was 39%.  What in the hell are we boasting about again??? 

The problem lies within all of us.  Our community is suffering, and we are only worried about ourselves; our families within our four walls.  This is a cultural problem.  This is a problem that everyone in society needs to deal with.  All of the Bourgeoisie black folk who live in the county’s elite neighborhoods like Fort Washington, Largo, Mitchellville, Bowie, Clinton etc. need to get off their asses, out of their gated communities and start mentoring and helping black children who may not have stable homes!! 

Everyone in the county who is doing well for themselves, need to come out of hiding and give back!! That is the problem; a lot of us are not giving back.  We have the degrees, the education the good government jobs; GS-14, 15 and SES’s and we think we are doing something.  We look down on those in the community who are not doing well while the damn county is falling apart.  But as long as we have our 600,000 houses and private schools to send our kids to, we are not worried about anything else.  And then we keep electing the same damn idiots to run Prince George’s County just because they go to our church. 

Wake up Black people; understand that our black youth are in crisis and it really does take a village to raise a child!!  So I ask you this; what are we going to do about it?  I didn’t ask what we want the government to do; but what are YOU going to do about it?  I mentor, and I starting my own mentoring program this school year in Prince George’s County.


10 Responses

  1. Well said, Native..That’s just a question that will never have an answer.

  2. ” Wake up Black people; understand that our black youth are in crisis and it really does take a village to raise a child!! ”

    mark bey: Native you should send this post to the church, the question of what are we going to do to mentor these young black children who are in trouble should be asked of the preachers. Women who make up the majority of the church should get in the preachers faces and tell to get their asses out their on the streets and do something to make a difference.

  3. Native..I was thinking about this over lunch. Maybe the people in PG who have made it are looking down at those dropouts because they made the decision THEMSELVES to terminate their education. They are probably thinking “We sacrificed and stuck it out, and so should they”. I’m not saying this attitude is right, but that’s probably the sentiment.

    I read all the time about how our forefathers risked everything so that we may have a better life, and those who have endured see no benefit in attempting to help someone who will not even try to help themselves.

    Now, if a person is having trouble and makes an honest effort to stay in school, then I’m sure those more fortunate would be happy to assist. I wasn’t a good student at all, but I knew that leaving would be of no positive benefit. People were willing to help me beacause I allowed them to. My point is that those who REFUSE to expect better for themselves should get off of THEIR asses, then maybe those who have been blessed will be more willing to help.

    The universal question is how do you convince someone who wants to drop out of school to stay in, especially when they see a life on the streets as a better alternative? That’s the hard part.

    All due respect, Native, as always.


  4. BTW, Native, for the record, I would be more than willing to help any kid who wants help and mentoring.

  5. Sup Gil:

    I feel you. and you know you are always welcome on my page my blog brother lol

    I am guilty of thinking like that sometimes (if I could understand the importance of education so can they), and to a certain degree that is true. But a lot of our young black youth were not fortunate enough to have parents or loved ones who gave a damn about them.

    There may be some kids who really want to drop out of school. But after reading this story in the Washington post, this kid was given a really bad hand in life. both of his parents were high school drop outs; his mom abandoned him and his father is a dead beat.

    These are the kids who I feel sorry for, because the choices they are making is because they didn’t have a responsible father like yourself or older brother/mentor like me in his life. I know someone (male adult) in his community saw what he was going through and just shurgged it off.

    and what really makes me mad about the Washington DC area is that there are too many professional blue and white collar black folks and young black folks who should be given back, but are too busy running around trying to look and be fly. Until one of the knuclke heads rob us or car jack us, then we get mad…

  6. Native Said:

    “and what really makes me mad about the Washington DC area is that there are too many professional blue and white collar black folks and young black folks who should be given back, but are too busy running around trying to look and be fly. Until one of the knuclke heads rob us or car jack us, then we get mad”…

    Oh.I agree 100%. You know like the saying goes, “An educated black man is more potent than one with a gun”. I still believe in that. As mentioned, I wish the young people dropping out would see that. I wish I could tell those who did not have good parenting if nothing else, hold on to your education. Hopefully things will change in that regard.

  7. We have similar problems in Texas, with both black and hispanic drop-out rates. And considering that the state will soon be majority hispanic, that is a big problem. However, I believe the cause of the dropout rates is slightly different with the two groups. Still, the problem remains and grows.

    Very frustrating. But besides supporting policy designed to help out, what can I as a white man do (besides trying not to be a racist dick)?

  8. By the way — this is actually bibliosk8er — forgot to log in under than name.

  9. Hey Bibliosk8er:

    Your ok in my book!! lol man to be honest as a community regardless of race, you can mentor or tutor. You don’t have to be black to teach black history to youth who may not have responsible support at home. thats one way. You can even vlounteer with the local chapter of the National Urban League

  10. I think there is a big need for work-study programs at the high-school level. A lot of these kids drop out because they don’t see how what they are learning in school will ever apply in the real world. There should be a program where the kids spend the first half of the day in the classroom and the second half of the day as paid interns or apprentices in the workplace. These programs should be year-round in nature because in the inner cities, school may be the only stable force in a young person’s life. A program like this can also help young people earn money, and keep them off the streets.

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