One of the things that disgusts me most this day and age is how these Afro moms cannot pick proper names for their children. You’ve all come across their offspring at a shopping mall or more likely working at a fast food place: Starkweesha Jones, N’Lamar Johnson, Tajooka and Shakahoka Greene. You know what I’m talking about here and it’s all an embarrassment and offense to our nation’s roots.
So imagine my contempt today when browsing through headlines at my office and the following story comes up: “A Woman Named Marijuana Plays It Straight“.
Before even clicking the link I knew it was going to involve a girl who was misnamed by her black mother. I was, of course, right.
Sawyer’s mother, Maggie Johnson, picked her name (Marijuna Pepise Sawyer). Her father objected but lost the argument. To this day, a lot of family members and best buds call her Pepsi.
“She said that she knew when I was born that you could take this name and go around the world with it. At the time as a child, I’m thinking yeah, right. You named my older sister Kimberly. You named my younger sister Robin,” Sawyer said.
The most surprising part of this story, of course, is that the father was actually around. As you know, statistically black fathers tend to sneak off and leave these poor colored mothers to raise their children all alone. This is why black youth, especially the boys, tend to be less disciplined and end up in prison. They don’t have fathers around to instill a sense of discipline in them. It is a sad cycle.
What’s even worse though are these names. All too often black kids feel like outcasts, as they are stuck having to defend their insane names and having to correct people with good names on the pronunciation.
This makes them feel separate from other kids and it’s probably why if you look around your local mall or high school sporting events, you’ll notice the little colored kids tend to segregate themselves from everyone else.
I used to think it was because they were a bit bigoted or had chips on their shoulders, but when you think deeply about it you realize that it’s all because this endless cycle of their parents not letting go of the past.
African-American parents, or mothers more accurately, need to stop putting the burden of the past on their children. I know it was once trendy for black people to put an X in place of their God-given last names and to start taking names from the ‘mother-land’, but all this nonsense has to come to a stop.
Martin Luther King had a dream of this nation unifying and people being judged not by the quality of their skin, but by the content of their character. Character building starts with self-perception, and self-perception is shaped by how you relate with your peers.
Having a name like Doneesha or Tyrone is not going to help these little black kids seamlessly interact and assimilate to the culture of their peers at our schools. Good people like Justice Marshall and Lyndon Johnson wanted to integrate schools not to build walls of division, but bridges of unity among the youth in America.
We need a national standard for names in our country. What is wrong with parents picking good, American names like Joseph, Mary, Ann or Elizabeth for their kids? Nothing.
Kids should be able to be proud of their names and not have to endure odd stares because their parents felt some weird need to burden them with a foreign nonsense name.
America is the great melting pot and the more the immigrant cultures throw of their shackles of the past and accept unity by accepting their American tradition, we will leave the dark past behind and all move together in the brotherhood of unity toward a brighter America.