Tag Archives: mentoring 100 boys

Confronting Racism

shoutingThe Root reported that there has been heavy backlash for Steve Harvey who invited Paula Deen to mentor the 100 young Black men at his mentoring camp.

For those that don’t know Deen is thought to be a racist. Now usually I wouldn’t support our young people being exposed to racists but I can see the value in what he is doing. (Steve has reportedly said he didn’t care what people thought and social media is calling for the parents of the boys to take action.)

The value is in the lessons the could be learned from this; because while the camp is more that likely providing them with great skills they are also in a silo. There is great potential for them to learn:
– how to prove your haters wrong
– coping skills in dealing with people who think little of you
– understanding the view of black people by others
– learning to get something you need or want from someone who wouldn’t otherwise give it to you
– learning to manage opposing views
– confronting Racism or any issue head on instead of running from it
– working with those who may be an enemy

It is possible that good can come from this. But, as always, emotion has driven people to act before understanding. What I would say to the parents is to question:

– what is his rational

– what will the boys possibly get out of this

– what will they learn

– how will they protect the boys from anything that will cause lasting damage

– how are they going to manage conflict and confrontation

– why exactly did he think this was a good idea

– of all the chefs in the world, why this one

…and then make their decision whether or not they want their son(s) to take part. There has to be a reason. Instead of jumping to conclusions and assumption based outrage, ask questions, challenge – the parents have a right to ask so they can protect their children.

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Posted by on October 8, 2014 in Race, The Good Guys, The Social World


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