Education More News |

Paine College hosts debate on 'state of young black men'

  • Follow Education

Students from Howard University invited members of Paine College to debate the “state of young black men in America” at Paine’s chapel Sunday afternoon.

Back | Next
Howard University graduate student Willie J. Thompson speaks at the start of the debate between Paine College and Howard University freshman males on the topic "The State of Young Black Men in America" at Paine's Gilbert-Lambuth Memorial Chapel.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN/STAFF
Howard University graduate student Willie J. Thompson speaks at the start of the debate between Paine College and Howard University freshman males on the topic "The State of Young Black Men in America" at Paine's Gilbert-Lambuth Memorial Chapel.

Demetrius McCoy, a senior at Paine, said the image of the black male has been tarnished.

“We need to remember the black leaders of the past,” he said.

Issues that were discussed included complacency within the culture and image.

“Complacency has become an issue,” said Eli White, a freshmen at Howard. “We cannot let complacency exist.”

“If my brother can’t read, it’s my problem,” said John Armstrong, another Howard panelist. “This is all of our issues.”

Another issue brought up was the idea of having everyone help in raising children.

“We need to re-establish our village,” said the debate’s moderator, William Leon Ward, an educator with Will Power Motivation Group in Washington, D.C. “We also need the young people to embrace the village.”

The debate was instigated by a statement by former U.S. Sen. John Edwards, who called young black men “an endangered species in American society,” according to a news release.

Howard University’s panelists included students from the school’s Drew Hill Hall Council, a prominent dormitory.

“We want to educate people who haven’t been told where they can be and where they can go,” said David Thomas, 18. “We want to bring people up.”

The panelists come from all across the nation, which they felt was important to show all black males are facing the same problems.

Ward said young black men need to create their own encouragement and reclaim their future.

“One fact that tends to be ignored is hearing from the men that live it,” he said to the panelists. “We need to hear, ‘What is your reality?’”

The Rev. Willie J. Thompson Jr., a Ph.D. student at Howard, said the panel itself was an indication that young black men are moving in the right direction. He said just having the discussion is empowering the generation.

Ward said that while there was not have time at the Sunday debate to discuss all the issues facing young black men, he pledged the discussion would continue.

“Never quit,” Ward said. “Embrace someone else and help them not quit.”

Comments (7) Add comment
ADVISORY: Users are solely responsible for opinions they post here and for following agreed-upon rules of civility. Posts and comments do not reflect the views of this site. Posts and comments are automatically checked for inappropriate language, but readers might find some comments offensive or inaccurate. If you believe a comment violates our rules, click the "Flag as offensive" link below the comment.
JRC2024 01/15/12 - 11:08 pm
education, education and

education, education and education is the way. Leave the old ideas, ways and non conforming people behind.

cityman 01/15/12 - 11:18 pm
The state of too many young

The state of too many young black men is that they need to pull up their pants and be decent fathers and practice birth control.

Asitisinaug 01/16/12 - 01:19 am
Put the past behind you and

Put the past behind you and look towards the future. Don't depend on the government to do anything for you instead seek and obtain the best possible education. If someone looks like a criminal, acts like a criminal and walks like a criminal, chances are that they are a criminal so stay as far away from them and their lifestyle as possible. Nothing good comes easy, if it does then something is wrong with it be it drug money or government hand outs.

Debating and talking about issues is a very good start. However, most people at Paine College or Howard University are smart and will be a part of our positive future. We need to reach all of the others and it needs to be done at a very early age.

Craig Spinks
Craig Spinks 01/16/12 - 04:11 am
Asitisinaug, Your last


Your last sentence is telling.

Hopefully, after Iraq and Afghanistan, we'll turn our attention to nation-building in the USA- before it's too late.

Just My Opinion
Just My Opinion 01/16/12 - 05:41 am
Well, in my opinion, this is

Well, in my opinion, this is a HUGE issue and it'll take a few generations to fix it. First off, studies have shown that black men and women who become educated and financially "successful", will leave their past behind and flee to the upperclass neighborhoods and churches. So, there's not too much desire to "go back to where they came from" and help a brother out. The absolute best thing that could happen is for the father's of all these illegitimate children (this goes for blacks AND whites) to man up, take their responsibility as a father to heart, and STAY HOME with their family!! I really believe that if this one thing is not done, the black society will not change, not the way we know it. And again, this goes for the illegitimate children of any race.

Little Lamb
Little Lamb 01/16/12 - 02:53 pm
This is a good article and

This is a good article and I'm sure most of the participants are upstanding people. I was a bit disappointed in the rhetoric, however. The statements seemed to indicate a herd mindset, for example:

“We need to remember. . . .”

“We need to re-establish. . . .”

“We need to embrace. . . .”

“We want to educate. . . .”

“We need to hear. . . .”

Just once, I would love to have been confronted with someone saying, “I am going to. . . .”

Each individual committing to do one specific good thing on his/her own would do more for society than all that collectivism.

Asitisinaug 01/16/12 - 06:08 pm
Very Good Point Little

Very Good Point Little Lamb....I am going to to my best to continue to be a positive role model for our youth, help in the reduction of drugs within the area, participate with the boys and girls club programs, and donate to charities such as NOBLE (National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives) in an effort to fund more scholarships.

Patty-P 01/17/12 - 02:34 pm
Asitis....your last few

Asitis....your last few sentences are telling....all this time I wondered who you were. I think its great that you are a good role model for the youth. Most people ignore the drug problems too, but the drug problem is a roadblock for success in many instances. The community needs more men like you.

Back to Top
Search Augusta jobs
Top headlines
Defendant acquitted of top charges at rape trial
After less than two hours of deliberations, the jury acquitted Christopher Davis of rape and aggravated sodomy, convicting him only of aggravated assault, possession of a knife during the ...