Categories
Black Family Politics

The Irony of Pro-Life

The term “pro-life” rose up in 1971 among those who opposed the Roe v. Wade decision which legalized abortion. A decision, to this day, which has caused many within religious and nonreligious circles to ponder upon what it means for a woman to determine the fate of the fetus within her. A decision which has […]

Categories
Social Justice

The Black American Dream and Milwaukee

Milwaukee is my home. I was born and raised there. My family home is in the Sherman Park neighborhood, half a block from the location of the unrest that happened the weekend of August 12th, 2016. My parents still live there. Until recent history, Sherman Park was a bastion of black success, the heavily sought […]

Categories
Black Family Coming-of-Age Personal Essay Religion

My Kind of Gospel

Yes, I’ll admit it. I was a choir boy. I was the seven-year-old that would have singing lessons with his grandma that wouldn’t end until I either held my notes longer than her, or practiced my scales to her pleasing. Embarrassingly, I wanted to be in the choir for many years, and when I finally […]

Categories
Black Family Black Lives Matter Coming-of-Age Fatherhood

A Letter to My Father

It wasn’t until we stopped speaking that I realized that we haven’t had a real conversation at any point in life. Sure, there have been talks, but they’ve always been one-sided, and I don’t think either of us realized it. Truth is, I’ve been living in your shadow for so long trying to be just […]

Categories
Black Family Marriage Motherhood Parenting

Train Up a Child

From an early age, I wanted to be a mother. I never thought too deeply about how I would raise my children or the values I’d instill into them, but I figured when the time came I’d sit down and discuss it with my husband. As I’m closing in on the final months of my […]

Categories
Black Family Black Women Coming-of-Age

My Mother and Me

One of the best parts of my adult life is the camaraderie I’ve developed with my mother. It’s a fruitful and engaging friendship filled with jokes, laughs, and playful pokes by the two of us. If a couple of weeks go by without us speaking, my phone will ring and “Mommy” will flash. The minute […]

Categories
Black Family Black Teens Coming-of-Age Personal Essay Queer Issues Responsibility Sexuality

What’s the Real Danger Here?

Imagine a 15-year-old black boy sucking dick on a staircase while his mother thought he was at the library. Or a 15-year-old boy going to Pride to have sexual encounters with random men on the street. Or even a 16-year-old boy scared to go to the supermarket out of fear that he might see the […]

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Black Family Black Teens Coming-of-Age Queer Issues Sexuality

Love as a String

2014: A conversation with my father I walked with my father to the store in the rain. “So…” my dad said. “I heard that you were gay.” “I am,” I said as I moved from underneath his umbrella. “Well, you know you are going to hell, right?” I paused, getting drenched in the rain. “And who […]

Categories
Baltimore Black Family Fatherhood Fathers Day

Explaining Baltimore to My Six-Year-Old Son

Editor’s Note: With the latest sickening domestic atrocities spinning incessantly in the 24-hour media cycle, the Baltimore protests almost seem like ancient history. Almost. At the time, we received an essay from a black father and husband about the challenges of discussing the protests―and the racial state of affairs in America―with his two small children. […]

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Black Family Fathers Day

Happy Father’s Day