Recently, the Chicago Suntimes reported that "a pimp scoured West Side neighborhoods for girls and women he forced into prostitution was sentenced to 50 years in prison.
A jury found the then 32 year old male, guilty on all counts, including 10 charges of sex trafficking by force, fraud and coercion and sex trafficking of minors. He trolled neighborhoods in search of young, vulnerable victims, and he at first promised love, before forcing the girls into prostitution.
This story is all too familiar. Worst still, we are feeding this beast.
Here is the type of counter-intuitive question raise at ArchAngel Human Development Institute: What is the value of manhood in your family?
To arrive at a reasonable answer to this primary question, let me pose several secondary questions, such as: 1) Do you or your children live in a two parent household? 2) Were you raised in a two parent household? 3) Do you accept marriage as cardinal principle in male-female relationships? 4) How many books, articles or lectures do you experience each month on the plight of children without fathers or male involvement?
If you have affirmative or forward answers to these questions, then it is reasonable to believe that there is some level of healthy value for manhood in your early development or latter social formations.
However, increasingly in the U.S., the trend is away from the preservation of the above mentioned family models. Our society is rushing towards the extreme polarities of the super self-centered and the desperately in need of belonging. Which end of the spectrum are you? If you are a parent, which end are you pushing your children toward?
What self-images are you promoting of yourself? Can you recognize a healthy image? Popular culture has slowly transformed what is considered a healthy male or female image. The images we craft are a direct reflection of the value we hold for what we are as persons. When young children are developing, between 2 years old and 13 years old is when the images he forms of maleness and females is in direct proportion to what is promoted in his environment. The child carries forward the desire to fulfill the standards that correlates to these images.
It is the responsibility of parents to define the appropriate images and standards for children. It is the responsibility of fathers to demonstrate how to respect women from the earliest ages. The father must burn a healthy respect for women into the mind of the child by reinforcing expressions of respect and love for the mother, even in the face of relationship turbulence. The father must show passion and compassion for the mother.
Many of us as fathers have adopted a self-image that is too macho, too concerned with imitating popular culture or too reflective of street culture. These images are frequently on display on male children with earrings, wild hair, cocked hats, etc.
Mass media has generally usurped the power of parents to define images. However, parents must stop compromising their own standards to accommodate popular culture, especially since popular culture is morally, spiritually and emotionally sick.
What makes a teenager or young adult have the predatory impulse to pimp and violently abuse young girls? What changes do adults need to engage in to breed, raise and develop healthy male children?
It’s time that many of us as parents realize it’s time for a character reform. Join us at the ArchAngel Human Development Institute to engage in this necessary task of Self-Improvement at our next Inspiration Sunday.
Min. Michael Muhammad