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What A Fool Likes To Believe
by Mike Ramey
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Not that long ago, I ran into a friend of mine at a local store. We caught up on each other’s lives. Her daughter, a real ‘hellion’ as a teenager, looked forward to the day she could ‘get her own place’, and move out from under Mama’s roof.

Freedom day eventually came, and the daughter packed her stuff and moved.

Six months later, the daughter wanted to move back home after finding out that real life does not accept excuses. Neither do creditors, utility companies, or employers. All the ‘stuff’ that her Mama tried to teach her was becoming crystal clear.

Mama put her foot down and said: “No, daughter, you CAN’T come back!”

Tough love? Child abuse? An uncaring single parent?

None of the above! I would say that Mama called it--as she saw it!

IF more mothers would take a stand and teach their daughters to be young women, instead of 'men in dresses', we would have a LOT less in the way of problems in our workplaces, our homes, and ESPECIALLY our churches.


Instead of America being recognized as the land of the free and the home of the brave, it has become infected with the malady of ‘excusitis’--a strange disease that paralyzes the body and the brain, rendering both incapable of clear thought and going to work.

In other words, brothers, the punks have taken over the battlefield, forcing those of us who believe in the church, the Bible, morality, hard work, and upright living off to the sidelines with barely a moan. Some of them are of the female variety.

It’s time for those of us who have a backbone to fight the true enemy.

The true enemy is ignorance--the benchmark of a punk.

The true enemy is laziness--the excuse of a punk.

The true enemy is pleasure--the calling card of a punk.

The true enemy is rebellion, power, and doing it 'my' way--the fuel of punks everywhere!

What is a punk? To this columnist, the word is an acronym for the following: Prayer less Undisciplined Negative Kamikazes. In short, they want to take themselves out, and many of US out, with their antics and attitudes.

A real punk has no intimate knowledge of God, live their lives any way that they choose, and are blissful--if not proud--of the fact that they don’t know, how to go to school, work, pay tithes and taxes, and become a benefit to the community, rather than a drain.

I’ll be brief, brothers…America manufactures punks by the thousands, and the factory is going full-blast. Politicians, poets, priests, and teenagers. Corporate thieves and corner drug dealers. Smooth-talking adulteresses and fast-talking movie stars in front of sleeping Congressional committees. Young men and older women who should know better, but think the rules of life don’t apply to them.

You think that I’m being cruel?

On the contrary…I’m calling it--like I see it.

The Bible has a very accuate description for punks; God calls them F-O-O-L-S!


The only way that young men are ever going to reach the ranks of mature, responsible, and hard-working adulthood is NOT through affirmative action, a government handout, or filling their brains with the goo from BET, Hollywood, the major networks, or the DNC. Butt shaking, carjacking, dope selling and bed hoping are NOT things that should be encouraged, but discouraged.

Prison poetry is NOT a smooth career move!

Then, why the rise in juvenile crime? Why are so many of our teens hell-bent on dropping out of school and picking up a microphone--or a gun--instead of scholarship applications? Why won’t many voting age African Americans storm the polls the same way they storm the dance floor each weekend?

It’s simple. Too many parents--and adults in general--are content to keep their blinders on, and allow their children to do the same. Brothers, we tend to blame our lack of progress on racism, Republicans, and Ritalin--but won’t confront wrong when it is wrong! WE don’t speak the truth the same way that adults and parents from other races do their children.

Then we wonder why our youth are featured on the nightly news in handcuffs.

Yes, it is tragic to see this parade of potential being led away to Juvie, jail, or prison. What I fail to understand is the following: There are a host of folk talking the trash of: “It takes a village to raise a child!” Unfortunately, if half of the village is afraid of the children IN the village, how can anyone be raised?

One cannot parent at that level.

One cannot teach at that level.

One cannot even communicate at any level.

When I sit down with a young man who is on the edge of trouble (be it in the classroom, or the jailhouse), I have to repeatedly tell him to look me in the eye, shuck the excuses, and tell me if he wants to go on to prison--or the morgue--or set his life up on the right route. I’ll tell you, it gets real quiet. You don’t know if the teen is mad because he got caught, or mad at the fact that, for the first time in his life, someone is calling him to accountability.

But he eventually looks me in the eye and listens.

Call them--like you see them.

It’s rough to dispense the truth when it is needed. No, you won’t be the most popular person around the coffee urn. Yes, people will ‘distance’ themselves from you and call you an Uncle Tom, an Aunt Jemima, or ‘not a real black’.

Yes, you will have 'women' preachers, and 'spineless' Trustees trying to justify their rebellion against the Bible.

Yes, you will be ridiculed and cursed for your standing in truth, when every one else is quick to submit excuses for why they didn’t get ‘that’ job, or ‘that’ relationship. No, you won’t have Oprah calling you for a book deal, or Montel calling you for a guest shot on his next show.

However, there is one thing you WILL have, when you have called it straight, tight, right, and true.

The right to be called--a MAN!

In the end analysis, excusitis breeds a PUNK.

Truth breeds MEN...that DON'T back down!

Do you hear me NOW?

RAMEY, a syndicated columnist and book reviewer, lives in Indianapolis, Indiana. THE RAMEY COMMENTARIES appears on fine websites and gracious blogs around the world. To correspond, email manhoodline@yahoo.com. © 2011 Mike Ramey/Barnstorm Communications International.

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Member Comments
Member Date
Sarah Balk Bond 09 Feb 2005
Great posting! It has all your trademark "to the point" aspects, but also shows what we need to do to change. Amen!


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