So, I had a quick pow wow with Pastor Jamal Bryant recently. If that name sounds familiar, you may have seen him on TV One’s “Ultimate Merger” sitting next to Omarosa as she deliberated on which of her suitors to send home. If you watched the series, then you know that in the end, she didn’t select any of the 12 men to be her beau.
Rumor has it that she was already dating Michael Clarke Duncan at the time of taping, but even if that’s true, the show was a pretty accurate depiction of the struggle a lot of women go through when trying to find the right guy. There was the bald, short, cocky guy who didn’t have a job. There was Al B. Sure, who obviously thought singing “Night and Day” over and over again would be enough to win Omarosa’s affection. There were dudes who just weren’t interested in her, including one who snuck out of the bachelors’ suite to spend the night with another woman, and then there was the guy who was married.
So, I asked Pastor Bryant what he thought about the disconnect between sistahs and brothers. He said:
“There are so many levels of disconnect. The African-American culture is the only in the world where you hear a woman say she doesn’t need a man. Asian women don’t say that. Russian women won’t say that. There is no other culture on the planet where you hear that. It’s only African-American women who you will hear say that. The black woman’s over-independence has made black men feel unnecessary or like an accessory. So, men have taken that to mean that a woman is an option, and being part of a woman’s life is optional. Men and women have to need each other, and understand that we’re not options to one another. We’re necessary for our existence, totality and purpose.”
So, of course I don’t totally agree with his POV. Honestly, I think most of the women I know are independent because no one has stepped up to offer assistance, not because they just want it that way. So, is it the chicken or the egg? Is our independence the reason so many brothers aren’t committing, or is that lack of committment why we’re so independent?