Perception of Working Black Men

Black Men

I had a comment on one of my videos that I found very interesting.   A young man wrote that a woman had problems dealing with him because he had a job, his own place, and a car.   Now in most communities a man with those things would be considered the norm.  It wouldn’t be seen as a big deal.  Apparently it is in the Black community.

To be fair the unemployment rate among Black males is very high.  That being said, the majority of Black men still have jobs.   Even among the Black men who don’t have official employment many engage in legitimate hustles where they can make money.  I’ve have seen Black men pushing lawnmowers around in neighborhoods as well as young men selling bottled water at busy intersections on hot days.   Many Black men may work as day laborers.   One way or the other many Black men are working.

So why is there this perception that Black men are not working?   How is it that many Black women cannot see the Black men who are gainfully employed?  There are two primary issues.   One issue is that the jobs that many Black men have are not high profile enough.  The second issue is that the Black men who are gainfully employed are not attractive to a critical mass of Black women.

A reality with many Black women is that they want to keep up with the Jones.   Many Black women want to live in the best neighborhoods, have the best cars, and most of all they want to live the life of the rich and bourgeois.   Many Black women want that status especially if they have college degrees.   So these particular Black women would not be happy with a regular brotha with a blue collar job.   They are looking for a professional who can move them into an exclusive neighborhood.   Black women would say they are looking for someone on their level.

As the educational attainment of Black women is higher than that of Black men, in their eyes there are not enough Black men working on the jobs they want them to have.   Thus a perception of a shortage of working Black men.   Even though there are plenty of high salaried blue collar brothas they are not registering on the radar of these educated Black women.

The second issue is that it’s not so much Black men are not working.  The Black men that Black women collectively find attractive may not be working.   There are many Black men who for all intents and purposes are gigolos.   While their women work, these men can sit home, play video games, work out, and have sex with the women when they get home.   The women put up with it because the dudes are sexually attractive.  This arrangement works for a while until something funny happens.   Women get tired of that scenario.

Women may want a sexually attractive man and are willing to take care of him for a little while.   After a few months to a year the attraction wear off and the woman gets tired of dealing with him.  She may give him an ultimatum of “get a job or else.”  He likely takes the “or else” option since the woman’s soon to be ex-friend was eyeing him for months.

The bottom line is that many Black women do not want the Black men who are working.   A rule of thumb for to remember when Black women say anything about Black men is that they are only talking about a small percentage.   The overwhelming amount of Black men prefer Black women but the sistas will focus on the ones chasing Becky.   The overwhelming amount of Black men are working but they are focused on the ones not working.

So the next time a Black woman says something about Black men not working it must be remembered that she is only referring to those men she finds attractive.

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