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“I feel privileged to be his son. I am happy to have had him, if only for a little while.” —-Julius Garvey
Julius Garvey was able to articulate loving words for his father, Marcus Mosiah Garvey. Building the Universal Negro Improvement Association, what was then and now the largest African American organization ever, required non-stop travel which meant Mr. Garvey was often away from home and his family. Yet, it appears Mr. Garvey was able to cast and sustain favorable memories in the mind of his son Julius. Some may say it is the quality of the time spent with someone that counts while others may voice an argument for quantity. What transcends debate is this question which looms large; how many sons being raised by single mothers will be able to voice words of admiration and love for their fathers?
If technology has improved on anything, it has certainly taken video games to a whole new level. Stroll down the video game aisle and see an array of titles that guaranteed to have your head spinning. What became of Pac-Man? Remember when that was the game of choice? Times have certainly changed. And with that change has come an even greater need for sons to develop and maintain a degree of discipline that is perhaps as unprecedented as ever. Video game producers spend millions researching just what a game should have in order to hold the player’s rapt attention. It is no accident that many youth can spend hour after hour compiling their “Dream Team” or giving considerable thought to which weapon would most effectively eliminate the menacing enemy but find it next to impossible to sit still long enough to read a book that doesn’t contain pictures on each page. Therein lies the challenge; how to compete with the NBA 2K10s of the day.
It has been said the most significant and integral institution in any nation is the family. The family is in a real sense a crucible in which the folkways and mores of society are learned and passed down from one generation to the next. Children, often the outgrowth of a traditional/non-traditional family, are the beneficiaries of the combined experiences resulting from two parents. If the often cited African proverb, “It takes a village to raise a child” is a valid observation, how challenging is it for two parents to perform this vitally important task? But even more to the point, how much more challenging is the responsibility if it is to be performed by a single mom?