16 The Compass Friday, March 8, 1996
Black man's view of black women:
Forum stresses need
for mutual support
by Tamika Spruill
Sisters have you ever wondered what
brothers really think of you?
If you went to the forum: "A Black
Man's Perspective on the Black
Woman" you had a chance to find out.
The forum, part of Black Women's
Week, was held Nov. 7, in Room 122 in
Johnson Hall. It was sponsored by
Delta Sigma Theta Sorority. The stu
dent panel included Thomas Clifton,
Kirk Rivers, Gerald White, Vincent X,
and Warren Judge. Topics included the
ideal black woman, does the black fe
male support the black male, and the
issue of how the black female presents
The forum began with the question:
what is your perception of the ideal
"She should be strong and able to
express herself," said Kirk Rivers. Pan
elist Gerald White described his ideal
black woman as being "someone who
respects herself and everyone else. She
also needs to set goals for herself."
Next the panel addressed this ques
tion: "Has the black woman been sup
portive enough of the black male?"
"She has been the backbone of the
black race and very supportive of the
black male," said Rivers.
The forum took a different angle
when a female audience member criti
cized black males.
"Black men are always cheating or
they end up in jail," she said. "Why
should we stay with them?"
This comment generated intense re
actions from the audience.
"Love does not go that far, don't put
up with it." said White.
"It's on the woman to make that de
cision whether or not to deal with it,"
an audience member claimed.
Another member of the audience said,
"Girls shouldn't put themselves in that
situation to get played or disrespected."
A heated debate arose over the issue
of the way men and women dress.
One audience member demanded,
"When you guys dress like thugs with
you pants hanging off your butt are we
supposed to think and assume you are
a thug even though you're in college
and you look like one?"
The forum ended with the question:
"How can black females and black
males strengthen their ties?"
Several students, stressed the impor
tance of mutual respect.
"We should support each other or
there is no strength," said Warren
This forum provided ECSU students
with the opportimity to express their
viewpoints on relationships, images,
and come to a better understanding of
ECSU students register to vote during
the Feb. 13 Virginia Union game. Voter
registration was sponsored by Alpha
Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. From
left: Monica Thomas, Marcus
Weatherford, Moses McDaniel,
Thomas Clifton, Derrick James,
Jay Bright, and Charles Williams.
Photo by Tonia Pobton
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