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DOMESTIC VIOLENCE ISN’T THAT COMPLICATED
Author: Gregory Clay
Photo By: Mused Magazine Online

Adrian Peterson

I see it on the bus.

I see it in all of its embarrassing degradation.

I see how some black parents --- mostly women --- treat their black children in public in the nation’s capital, a predominantly black city.

I see the slaps to the face. I see --- and hear --- the denigrating proclamations, “I’m going to slap the black off you.”

“I’m going to slap the black out of you.”

We’re not talking doctors here, or lawyers here, or college professors here or accountants here. We’re talking parents in lower-level jobs with even lower-level education.

With that, let’s not forget the childhood circumstances of Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, who was indicted for child abuse on Sept. 11. Friends and relatives have said Peterson’s father, Nelson, beat Adrian mercilessly, USA Today reported.

Adrian has said the beatings helped steer him straight. The only reason Nelson didn’t beat Adrian more was because, when Adrian turned 13, his father was convicted for money laundering, stemming from his role in a crack-cocaine ring. Nelson served eight years, finally getting out of prison in 2006, just in time to see his son play in person during his final season at Oklahoma.

In the area of parental-discipline philosophy, Adrian Peterson says he followed the “lead” of his father, a convicted felon. What is wrong with this picture?

The running back has up to seven children or at least seven children, depending upon which media report you believe, with at least five mothers. However, it appears that Adrian Peterson ostensibly doesn’t know many children he really has.

Now, back to Nelson for a second for some insight.

Nelson, according to friends and relatives, once said he would beat the diagnosed attention deficit disorder out of his son, Adrian.

Adrian, according to police, sent a text message to one of his children’s mothers after beating his son: “. . . Got him in nuts once I noticed. But I felt so bad, n I’m all tearing that butt up when needed! I start putting them in timeout. N save the whooping for needed memories!”

So that’s the “lead.” That’s what Adrian apparently got from father Nelson.

By the way, the operative term should be “whupping,” not “whooping.”

Speaking of “leads,” Adrian learned another bad habit from his father: promiscuous procreation. Nelson Peterson told the Dallas Morning News in 2006 that he had 10 children. It’s unclear the number of mothers involved. That was eight years ago, so there could be more.

When they say “like father, like son,” take it literally in the Peterson family.

All of this appears to suggest Adrian Peterson is complicit in a nightmarish numbers game. Numerous children in numerous states dilutes his parenting time, logic suggests.

Said psychologist Dr. Erik Fisher, author of “The Art of Empowered Parenting,” on CNN on Sept. 20: “. . . Parents don’t spend as much quality time with their kids. And that could be the confounding variable, not that they spank their kids. I think we have to look at a qualitative issue.”

Many other black folk --- from athletes Charles Barkley to Reggie Bush --- have publicly supported these “whuppings.”

Barkley even said all black parents in the South whip their black children. During the last few weeks, we’ve heard many black males, from Adrian Peterson to Charles Barkley, conflate the endeavors of “whuppings” and “success.” As in those “whuppings” made me a better man, or made me the man I am today. The repetition of that thinking is nauseating.

So going to school can’t make you a better man, or reading a book or learning life skills or listening to sound advice.

Some of these “whupping-beating” philosophies are self-destructive at worst and semi-literate at best.

Some say the prevalence of corporal punishment by black folk is rooted in slavery and derived from the inhumane rules of engagement on southern plantations 200 years ago.

No way.

The concept of corporal punishment emanated from the church, a powerful force in many black communities in the South. And there is the de facto biblical proverb or adage we all know: Spare the rod, spoil the child. Except I don’t think the Bible advocated what is tantamount to assault and battery in some family households.

With that, spanking is one thing. “Whupping” is another. And beatings are extreme child abuse.

It’s not as complicated as many portray or would hope.

When bruises are present, blood is drawn and scabs form, that’s another ballgame.

It’s called criminality.

Let’s examine this scenario:

White celebrities such as Steven Spielberg, Sandra Bullock, Tom Cruise and Madonna all have black children. Suppose one of them “whupped” or beat a black child as Adrian Peterson did? The photos are released, just as in the Peterson case. Then, there would be massive outage among many in the black community. The two Roving Reverends of Recompense --- Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson --- would converge on the scene like “Jack be nimble, Jack be quick.” So-called “Black Twitter” would be aghast. In full finger-pointing force.

Guaranteed.

This case is similar to the Black-on-Black Crime Syndrome. When the enemy is perceived to be within the community, tragedy often is met with indifference despite the specter of violence directly in black households. When the enemy is viewed as someone from outside the community, tragedy often is met with stiff condemnation.

We see that every day during the continuing saga fomenting in Ferguson, Mo. White police officer shoots black teenager; that’s a recipe for civil unrest with the accompanying “No justice, no peace” mantra.

But notice you don’t hear the “No justice, no peace” mantra for black children who are brutally beaten in black households. I wonder why.

Read this passage from a treatise written by the Harvard Black Law Students Association’s Social Justice Committee:

“While other problems --- high incarceration rates, the education attainment gap, housing instability, disproportionate HIV rates and violent crime in black communities --- are often the topic of discussion and activism, domestic violence is rarely discussed. It should be. Domestic violence is not only as much of a problem in the black community as it is across the nation, but it’s a bigger problem. More frequent. More lethal.

“In 2005, African Americans accounted for nearly a third of the intimate-partner homicides. For years, the (few) studies that have addressed the issue of domestic violence in the black community have told the same story. A study published in 2000 reported that black females experienced intimate-partner violence at a rate 35 percent higher than that of white females, and about 22 times the rate of women of other races. In 2005, black women accounted for 22 percent of the intimate- partner homicide victims and 29 percent of all female victims of intimate partner homicide.

“Black men are also affected. The same 2000 study found that Black males experienced intimate-partner violence at a rate about 62 percent higher than that of white males and about 22 times the rate of men of other races. Black men are also more likely than white men to be killed by their partners, though at a lower rate than black women. In 2005, black women were 2.4 times more likely than a black male to be murdered by their partners. In 2002, the number one killer of African-American women ages 15 to 34 was homicide at the hands of a current or former intimate partner.”

Logical observation: That bombshell of an explanation speaks volumes about pathology in some sectors of the black community.

Add the aspects of environmental instability and the misogyny of gangsta music in the black community, stir it up and mix dangerously, we see a lethal cocktail.

Therefore, you can’t tell me there is no correlation between all of the above and “whuppings” and beatings and misbehavior by many young black males.

Basically, it’s a self-perpetuating cycle --- What you see is what you do and what you get. If you see a fool every day, then you become a fool every day.

We see that with Adrian Peterson.

Logical conclusion: Many young black males, such as Peterson, obviously don’t have the wherewithal to compartmentalize their negative life experiences. Many of them as adults either don’t have or don’t want to have the intellectual curiosity to improve upon the maelstrom of a precarious home or family life.

That produces laziness in attitude and action. That means they take the easy way out.

Which means the child, ultimately, suffers the most.


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