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Elders Wisdom

useni_perkinsThe Black Male Development Symposium was conceived and developed by the leadership at Third World Press to provide a unique opportunity for Black males and females, of all ages, to address the myriad of problems that are having an adverse effect on the socialization of young Black males. To date, Symposiums have been held in Chicago, IL; Columbus, OH; and   Detroit, MI; thanks to the efforts of Patrick Oliver, Haki Madhubuti and the host institutions.

The problems facing today’s Black males are multiple, deeply rooted and exceedingly complex. Indeed they have become major obstacles, which are dramatically disrupting the normal socialization of Black males and causing a disproportionate number of them to face a future that is indisputably bleak.

In this regard, young Black males are significantly over-represented in the juvenile justice    system, involved in the selling of drugs, active in street gangs and exhibiting behaviors that   violate traditional Black values. As a result, the media, of every pervasion, embellishes them with images that are provocative, exaggerated, distorted and racially biased. Many young males are being stigmatized as incorrigible, hostile, dangerous and as society’s newest socialized lexicon-super predators. Indeed, many are being programmed for failure and the script for their future has already been written.

However, to counteract this dismal forecast, the Black community must collectively assume the primary responsibility for the welfare, protection and spiritual development of our youth. This symposium will address these problems. Informative presenters and interactive workshops will develop realistic strategies and concrete recommendations that can be put into practice in our respective communities.

In the interest of our youth,
Unseni Eugene Perkins
President, Association for the Development of Black Youth