Black women have been complaining for years about their inability to find good black men. There is are plenty of black men to choose from, but where are the ones who are faithful, stay and raise their children, (especially their sons), work legitimate job(s) to support their household. Some believe black males are often raised by young, immature, or damaged black women, which inevitably creates damaged and immature black men. I am tired of hearing there are no good black men out there. They are not a myth, they do exist. I see them everyday, and I could think of the many reasons why they go undetected.
I remember an incident on a bus years ago when I was in my early twenties. It was an ordinary day and I was on my way to work. The bus wasn’t crowded yet, the afternoon rush hour barely started during a school day. I was not surprised to see some teenage boys already sitting at the back of the bus when I got on. They weren’t overly noisy at first, but that soon changed. They became boisterous and extremely unruly. People kept turning around, shooting dirty looks their way thinking they could shame them into being more considerate.
A few stops after I got on, a young black man boarded. I gave him a good look up and down and quickly dismissed him as not being my type.
I, like most black women in their twenties, was always on the lookout for good black men with the total package; he had to be cute, tall, nice physique, nicely dressed, well groomed, and smell good. For me, having a car was a plus, but not a complete write off if he didn’t. This guy wasn’t unattractive, but he didn’t really qualify based on the above criteria. He looked average; his height, his build, his clothes, and I immediately made the mistake of assuming his personality had to be average too.
He grabbed a seat at the front of the bus, a few seats ahead of where I was sitting.
I would usually try to get some sleep before my shift, but every time I was on the verge of dozing off, the noisy teenagers would jolt me awake. The only one who seemed undisturbed was that same average looking young black man at the front of the bus. He sat with a rather large book open on his lap, and earbuds wedged in his ears. He seemed perfectly unaffected until, out of nowhere, he shut his book closed, stood up and walked with purpose towards the back of the bus. In that moment, I couldn’t help but notice how this average young black man carried himself differently. His posture straightened, his chest stuck out, and he had this stride I may have missed when I first saw him. Everything about him screamed authority, like a true leader.
My gaze followed this man while all the possibilities of what could happen next raced through my mind. I kept thinking this fool is looking for a fight, and there is no way it will end well for him. I definitely did not want to be late for work, even though a fight breaking out on the bus would be a great excuse for my lateness.
He came to a full stop in front of the teenage boys, standing tall and firm, and what happened next was beyond anything I could have ever imagined. This young black man scolded the boys, much like a father would scold his sons for behaving badly. After giving them a stern talking to, his demeanor softened. He actually sat down and spoke to them as peers, as someone who could relate to them and lived what they are living. This chat continued for a good 10 minutes. It turned into a full conversation between the young man and the teenagers. Passengers were no longer afraid to sit at the back of the bus anymore. They came aboard and went straight to the back, unaware of the calamity just moments ago. The boys grew quiet and appeared to hang on the young man’s every word.
Satisfied with a job well done, the young black man stood up and, shook hands with the teens, and walked back to his original seat. I would be lying if I say I didn’t find what he did incredibly sexy. I felt an immediate attraction toward this man I so carelessly shrugged off a short while ago.
This young black man turned out to be one of those good black men black women could never find. He stepped up when no one else would, and diffused a tense situation with an appropriate level of sternness and wit.
Black women, myself included, need to get a few things straight. I wrote a post about women wanting men to look past our outward appearance and appreciate the beauty within. How about we practice what we preach. We cannot expect men to dig deeper while we stay shallow. We need to look beyond the six packs, the biceps, the hair, the shoes, the car, the clothes, the money and discover the content of character tied to good black men. If men spend too much time polishing their exterior, their interior will probably be hollow and won’t begin to resemble any of the qualities black women want most in good black men.
So ladies, keep your eyes open. The good black men you’ve been waiting for may have better things to do than going to the club, making himself look pretty, perfecting his social media profile, and wasting his money on frivolous things. He might be hard at work in a fast food restaurant while putting himself through school. He might be taking the late night bus instead of driving a flashy car to save up for his first house. Or maybe he might stop and speak up when he sees wayward youth doing things they shouldn’t do while the cute black guys keep walking.
The choice is yours, are you willing to go deep and uncover that diamond in the rough, or will you settle for the cheap bling of costume jewelry?