Everyone is taught and so knows that this is their history. When you are prevented from speaking your own language, practicing your own cultural rites and uniting with your own kind, this affects the way in which they perceive you, as much as it does the way you perceive yourself. The legacy of being kidnapped, chained, bought, sold, whipped, spat on, spoken down to, ordered around and deprived of human rights being openly called nasty names; and not learning to read set up African Americans for a lifetime of self-hatred.
The healthy development of a child depends on the home situation, which provides affection, good example and security. Homes in increasing numbers seem to be failing to provide such conditions and the result is impaired emotional development of children that in turn may give rise to behavior that is self destructive, antisocial, educational failure and disintegration of families. Unemployment is known to increase hospital admission for mental disorders. Poverty results in discord, conflict, severe deprivation or abuse and becomes pathogenic. Living in a neighborhood of poor, female headed households that are dependent on welfare where there are few male role models, and youngsters are exposed to violence, crime, drug dealers, prostitution, gang welfare, graffiti have a profound and lasting effect on a child’s emotional development.
When we see black youth engaging in excessive displays of criminality and violence towards each other, it reeks of self-hatred. So deprived of respectability by the wider world, they are caught up in a confused and destructive web whose fabric is composed of a lack of self-knowledge and an obsession with respect, money and becoming rich. When they maim or kill their fellow blacks, police enquiries into the crime are not as stringent. A quote from one of the Godfather films said it best: “They’re only niggers, let them kill their souls!”
From a study from Temple University’s African-American Studies...