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And all we have left are pictures of dreams deferred… You know, Confucius wasn’t wrong when he wrote ‘a picture is worth a thousand words’. I mean, just look at the picture below. What does it represent to you? A care-free bygone age – the 1970s? Funky fashions? Obsolete Kodak cameras? Over-sized copies of Ebony magazine? What? Probably all of the above. But the image below is evocative primarily because it features a Black father with his son ( sadly, not a common enough sight these days). A father teaching his young son to ride a pushbike, and firmly guiding him through the process. A father and son together? Side-by-side? In a public park? In the 1970s? Doesn’t it all appear like a distant memory…or, to some, merely hearsay? Forty-plus years of CIA-created, welfare-supported, anti-family, matriarchy, and what we have left are melancholy memories and broken dreams. The African-American family is on life-support machine. It will remain so until a central place is found for the father in its chaotic homes. Welfare removed the Black father as head of his home. Welfare was a primary weapon used by the white-male elite to snuff out the two-pronged drive for manhood presented by the Black Power and Civil Rights Movements respectively. The Black power Movement represented the Black man’s determination to take full control of his family and community, while the Civil Rights Movement represented his drive for equal citizenship beyond his community. The icons of these movements were murdered, imprisoned and/or exiled. And what do we have left among the ruins? Pictures of men; of martyrs; of Movements; of memories; of fathers and families; of childhood; of manhood; of womanhood: of loss. Now look again at the picture below, and tell me that it doesn’t just about break your heart. (c) Menelik Charles

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