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(The Root) — It sometimes rubs people the wrong way. But President Obama has a tendency to talk about parental responsibility, especially as it pertains to absentee dads, when addressing African-American audiences.  “Michelle and I happen to be black parents, so I may add a little ‘umph’ to it when I’m talking to black parents,” he joked to the National Urban League last summer by way of explanation.  Of course, fatherlessness is hardly an issue specific to black families. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 24 million children in America – one out of three – live in biological father-absent homes.  However, the figure rises to nearly two in three among African-American children in particular, and, according to the National Fatherhood Initiative, young people without dads around are more likely to drop out of school, use drugs, engage in criminal behavior, and become young parents themselves.

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