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News Link • Sexuality: Sex and the Law

Blacks struggle with 72 percent unwed mothers rate

• AP
One recent day at Dr. Natalie Carroll's OB-GYN practice, located inside a low-income apartment complex tucked between a gas station and a freeway, 12 pregnant black women come for consultations. Some bring their children or their mothers. Only one brings a husband.

2 Comments in Response to

Comment by Tommie Taylor
Entered on:

This is a very informative and timely article.  I want to share some of the research I have done regarding this problem.

I believe that the root of this problem begins in slavery.  The greedy slavemaster did not care about the feelings of his slaves.  He only wanted more slaves to increase his wealth.  So, he bought young, strong male slaves to impregnate young, strong female slaves.  They produced offspring which was property for the slavemaster.  For example, Sojourner Truth was a slave in New York.  She fell in love with a young slave on another farm.  Their relationship was found out.  The young male slave was severely beaten.  Sojourner was given to, not married to, a middle aged slave that her master owned.  This was done so that their children would be her slavemaster's property.  Now in the South, Black slaves developed a marriage custom since they weren't allowed to marry in church.  It was called "jumping the broom".  A couple jumped over a broomstick and they and the slave community considered them married.  That custom has been added to modern Afro American weddings where the bride and groom jump over a beautifully decorated broomstick either when they come out of the church ceremony or just as they enter the reception.  Later, the broomstick is hung in a place of honor in the new couple's home.  Another problem that slaves had was that members of a slave family could not show affection for each other except in private.  If the slavemaster saw a couple showing affection to each other or to their children, he would sell off the slaves, breaking apart the family unit.

During the Depression, the U. S. government began widespread social engineering.  It picked on one of the most economically vulnerable groups in America, Black people.  The government set up Welfare which a woman and her children could receive if the man was not in the home.  That is still a rule today.

I think that understanding the history of Black unwed parenthood from slavery forward and not just from segregation forward will begin to allow the Black community to solve this problem. 


Comment by Anonymous
Entered on:

This is a reflection of their shallow morality, their lack of honor, dignity, their lack of self-respect, their lack of respect for their children (born and un-born), and their lack of respect for their parents.    They are a shame to themselves and the world.

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