About me and my Dad …thoughts on Father’s Day 2017

This post is another fond remembrance of my Dad. Who had the unfortunate task of raising me as a son. I was that kind of kid who questioned everything..But mostly the “Jim crow” apartheid system he was forced to make a life for his family under. Like a lot of young “newly militant” people of that time we made the stupid mistake of thinking that because our parents took up the challenge to take care of their families even in that evil system. That it meant that our parents were somehow “okay” with being 3rd class citizens in our own country…It took a lot of growing up for me to see that my Dad fought me so hard about joining SNCC, about joining the Black Panther Party..about going to Africa..was because every person he had ever known who openly challenged the “status quo” of white supremacy …..was dead..And not just him, as I grew older it seemed almost every family had a tale of somebody who had challenged the way things were …back in the 1920s..or during WW II or even back in WW I..those stories all ended with a person who died under “strange circumstances” like my Dad’s father..or had to secretly leave town “forever” like my Moms Uncle Arthur..or sometimes they just hung you from a tree..My Father fought me on those things out of love…….and fear. When he passed away in 1984 …I found out from my brother and from my Dad’s old army buddies that he not only gave money secretly to SCLC and SNCC..but that at night when he drank with his VFW buddies he would brag about his son who had the “whiteys” so scared…it’s awful that I didn’t really know that side of my father while he was alive. But when I talk about him today I always mention the guts and bravery it took to dare to just take good care of your family in that awful time that I grew up in..This picture is from the late fortys or early 50s…my Dad walking to work in downtown Atlanta. He was the Chef in a white Restaurant that he was NOT allowed to eat at himself…He once during the civil rights movement beginnings told me about how he saw all the Black students picketing the place..and getting beaten up by the cops…He made me and my sister promise that we would never get involved . what he didn’t know is that I already knew them all…But what I didn’t know it that it was not lost of Dad that he cooked there all day long and could never bring his family in for a meal…Dad helped to bail out several of those people…that was called “The Atlanta Student Movement”..19247586_10211490822737714_1723158322210788754_n Those people….those parents were ALL heroes.And I salute ALL the Black fathers of those times..and a profound apology to my Father.