All Articles Tagged "african american psychology"
In light of President Obama’s recent speech promoting his jobs bill, prominent African-American scholars have taken this opportunity to think deeply about the root causes of black unemployment. Blackvoicenews.com spoke to several leading African-American scholars who have examined the social customs, psychological damage, and persistent disconnection that consistently renders black unemployment twice as high as the national rate — recession or no. Also interviewed were activists who believe that blacks need to gain a much deeper understanding of the powers at work, political landscape, and changing technologies that impact job opportunities. Leaders need to create plans to attack harmful issues based on a broader scope of information.
Towards this end, “Researchers also believe that what is needed is to take the conversation about Black unemployment well beyond job training and creation and deep into an understanding of the future world of work as well as how to meaningfully connect youth and adults (including the formerly incarcerated) to this new and ever-changing employment landscape,” Blackvoicenews.com reports.
How is this to be done? Hope lies in the fact that the African-American community has typically been resilient and creative, even in the most dire of circumstances. While obvious issues like the education gap need to be addressed, more psychological elements like learned helplessness as a reaction to racism need to be unlearned. Also key is teaching poor blacks to think beyond mere survival, which will allow them to invest in developing the service-based skills required for 21st century jobs.
Another emotional issue is coping with the negative expectations levied on blacks in the work world, which can lead to a lack of reverence for work that comes from being disrespected by society. Again, this is a serious cultural element that cannot be solved by jobs training alone.
In particular danger of falling prey to these impediments are black men, who more often turn to an illegal “hustle” when society fails to fortify them for their tough road. This leads to a pattern of incarceration, which makes getting a job even more difficult. Combined with the lack of education that more black men struggle with, the end of manufacturing jobs that pay a decent wage (and require little education) has led to fewer black men supporting families.
This phenomenon alone has a wide-ranging negative impact on our community. Blackvoicenews.com elaborates: