Gentle reader, I write this post with a heavy heart. To address the current crisis of my people, I must revisit the great depravity of my own childhood in order to highlight the disaster that is the contemporary American family: I, like countless contemporary children, grew up without an uncle in my life. I know, I know. My story is not a popular one in this day and age, when women are hell-bent on raising their children independently, without the help of their brothers. In fact, “brother” is a word that has faded from all but the most devoted nationalists. But let me tell you how the absence of a mother’s brother affected my childhood and the lives of countless children today.
I am a third generation uncle-less child. I had no uncles, my mother had no uncles, and my maternal grandmother had no uncles. If my great-grandmother had uncles, she never told my grandmother. We are a sorry line of uncle-less women. Though I want to blame my brotherless mother for my hasty conception, I can’t totally place the weight on her shoulders. Whose pattern was she to follow with no uncles in sight?
Let me show you what an uncle-less childhood looks like. There was no handsome man to call me “Miss Thang” or “Pretty Girl” [side note: my devoted father called me “Princess,” “Sunshine,” and “Water Head” but this critique is about lack, not abundance]. Without this uncle figure, I looked in all the wrong places for these nicknames. Without a model for non-fatherly/ non-sinister love, I was unable to recognize the grown men predators who meant me harm. Uncles (especially single ones) show girl children the ropes of relationships in ways that fathers and mothers simply can’t. An uncle will take you to the side and show you the difference between a player and a square, a lady and a tramp. Because my mother had no brothers, I had to negotiate these false binaries all by myself.
There were other milestones I missed because of my mother’s brotherlessness. No trusted man gave me my first sip of alcohol in the safety of my own backyard barbecue. I remember despondently listening to the stories of my friends who were introduced to such drinks by their beloved uncles. What did I do on the summer holidays of my adolescence? I blew bubbles! Let me tell you, blowing bubbles does not prepare you for freshman year in college. Because I grew up without an uncle, my first alcoholic drink came from an upperclassman who told me I was drinking “Pal Punch.” Had my mother had a brother, I would not have been mocked for yelling, “This don’t taste like Kool-Aid!”
The totality of my depravity can’t be covered in anecdotes. If my uncle-longings were nickels, I’d have at least $907.35. But they’re not. They are my private pain, and I have decided to make this pain public in order to address the foolishness of my generation’s women. Feminism is the major culprit in today’s epidemic of uncle-less-ness. With all this talk of sisterhood, women are forgetting the importance of our brothers in raising children. Our ancestors said it takes a village to raise a child, and surely that village included uncles. Hell, uncles were critically important even when we reached these shores. According to Wikipedia, Uncle Tom was a Christlike figure who was martyred for his refusal to reveal the whereabouts of two escaped female slaves. If there were more active uncles to show us the way, don’t you think we would be able to cure this pandemic of snitching in our communities? Have you watched First 48 lately?
Women, my pain does not have to be shared by our future generations. Save our communities! Guard your uterus until you have established brotherly relationships with men who are devoted to helping you raise your children. You can not do it alone! You can not even do it with the help of the child’s biological father. If you have daughters, please keep trying until you have at least one son. Our future generations need uncles. Statistics show that crime rates are rising in areas that already have high rates of imprisonment. Don’t be fooled by the “socially conscious”—this has nothing to do with heavy policing and inhumane living conditions. No, these statistics show that when uncles go to jail, whole families fail! Don’t be selfish; wait until your brothers return home to conceive. It’s the least you can do for our future generations. It’s the least you can do for the girl child in my broken heart, who blows bubbles and hopes someone will call her “Miss Thang.” May God bless and keep you, and send you a brother for your uncle-less child.
P.S. The writer of this post is qualified to berate mothers because she is blessed to have three brothers who will play active parts in her daughter’s life. Because this is my family structure, it should also be yours. P.S.S. I am looking for 100 other bloggers to join this movement, which is not to be confused with the following: NCNC: No Condoms, No Cutty; NPNP: No Proposal, No Poontang; NVNV: No Vasectomy, No Vagina; NFCNFC: No Fundamentalist Christianity, No Family Circle, etc.