Do not believe the lies. Most black fathers are not dead beats. We love our precious daughters and sons. Most of us are actively involved in our children’s lives.
As reported in Ebony and Think Progress, recent results of a Center for Disease Control and Prevention study ” ‘defy stereotypes about black fatherhood’ because the CDC found that black dads are more involved with their kids on a daily basis than dads from other racial groups.”
Think Progress further reports that:
The Pew Research Center, which has tracked this data for years, consistently finds no big differences between white and black fathers. Gretchen Livingston, one of the senior researchers studying family life at Pew, wasn’t at all surprised by the new CDC data. “Blacks look a lot like everyone else,” she pointed out.
Although black fathers are more likely to live separately from their children — the statistic that’s usually trotted out to prove the parenting “crisis” — many of them remain just as involved in their kids’ lives. Pew estimates that 67 percentof black dads who don’t live with their kids see them at least once a month, compared to 59 percent of white dads and just 32 percent of Hispanic dads.
And there’s compelling evidence that number of black dads living apart from their kids stems from structural systems of inequality and poverty, not the unfounded assumption that African-American men somehow place less value on parenting. Equal numbers of black dads and white dads tend to agree that it’s important to be a father who provides emotional support, discipline, and moral guidance. There’s one area of divergence in the way the two groups approach their parental responsibilities: Black dads are even more likely to think it’s important to financially provide for their children.
Dr. Roberta L. Coles, a sociology professor at Marquette University, has also researched black fathers for nearly a decade. Her most well-known work includes The Best Kept Secret: Single Black Fathers and The Myth of the Missing Black Father: The Persistence of Black Fatherhood in America. Like Pew, Coles has also found that even though black dads may be less likely to marry their kids’ mothers, they typically remain involved in raising their children.
Why isn’t this data more widely disseminated? Why do we continue to spread lies about black fathers being absent from their children’s lives?
[Originally posted at New Possibilities]