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Conservative, Black and Looking for a Wife

 

A YOUNG MAN from Massachusetts writes:

I decided to write in response to the race and marriage conversation that has been taking place on your site in the past week. I am a black young man in my early twenties who has been wrestling with the idea of interracial marriage for quite some time. I get along extremely well with conservative whites and am an active member of my local Roman Catholic parish, which is quite traditional. I suppose I number among those blacks that whites find non-threatening and engaging enough to build a genuine friendship with.

Being a 23-year-old young black man who is deeply interested in marriage and family life does bring with it a set of challenges. I am faced with a severe dearth of black women who are in my age group who think of “early marriage” (marriage before the age of 25) as a wise and viable decision. I am not particularly inclined to the idea of an interracial marriage but I find myself in a bind since I do not know that many black women who are Roman Catholic or who are keen on marriage and motherhood. Most women that I am acquainted with are extremely career-oriented, which makes the search for a spouse rather arduous.

The few women that I have met who are Roman Catholic and family-oriented who are in my age range are unsurprisingly white. Whites are more obviously more likely to be both Roman Catholic and from intact families. Therefore, I take issue with you stating that interracial marriages are “often imprudent, selfish and confounding” as per one of your responses in the ‘Race and Love Reconsidered’ thread. Sometimes one simply has to make due with an interracial pairing for lack of options within one’s own racial group.

Personally, I find that it is increasingly difficult to keep holding out for a black wife. I am unlikely to meet a socially conservative black woman who wants to be a homemaker and married before 25. Thus, I am preparing myself for the high eventuality of marrying a non-black woman given my traditional views on marriage and family life.

Lastly and of note to your readers, only 20 percent of 18-29 year olds were married on 2010 according to a Pew Research Center report. In sharp contrast, 72 percent of 18-29 year olds were married in 1960, as per the same report. As such, I find you and your readers criticisms of interracial marriages somewhat misguided as it is increasingly difficult for young Christians and other cultural conservatives to find spouses of any race in an age of hedonism and casual sexual relationships.

Many thanks for your great site. It has been a fantastic resource for me.

Laura writes:

Thank you for writing.

I can understand your difficulties in finding a wife. I am not going to tell you a way to make the search easy because it isn’t going to be easy. But I would encourage you to have some patience.

It seems to me there are quite a few serious young black women — I see them on college campuses often. These women face far worse prospects than you when it comes to marriage, given the low marriage rate among American blacks, even among college-educated black women. I find it hard to believe that these women are not aware of this reality, and that there wouldn’t be some interested in early marriage and the possibility of converting to Catholicism under the guidance of a good man who wanted to love them for life.

You are only 23 years old. I know you want to be married soon, but you could afford some time to look for a wife. You may live as a traditionalist in your future marriage, but if you are married to a white woman, remember that you will be supporting a standard that does harm those who are less fortunate than you. Interracial relationships have a significantly higher  rate of divorce and serious friction. They ultimately create a standard that leads not to more racial harmony, but to strong undercurrents of division and enmity. I wonder how many black women pass on resentment to whites to their children because they have this very real resentment that white women are taking their men?

Furthermore, I believe — but of course I can’t prove it — that you will be better able to transmit the faith to your children if you have a black wife. That’s the most important thing. Your children must learn to live as black Catholics and seek their identity as such. I don’t mean that they will be cut off from other Catholics, but to some extent they will probably wish to seek out other black Catholics. It will take some serious energy on the part of you and your wife to help them securely develop this identity in a culture where very few blacks are Catholic. (They will look black even if you have a white wife and thus will need to develop this identity in that case too.) If your wife is black, she can more easily join with you in helping them wrestle with this reality.

Would you say to your future children, who will look black and almost certainly consider themselves black, that almost no black women are worth marrying? It seems to me that even in believing such a thing, you bear some hidden slight against them.

By the way, I have to take exception to something you say. You write:

I suppose I number among those blacks that whites find non-threatening and engaging enough to build a genuine friendship with.

Most whites in America do not view blacks in everyday encounters as too threatening (except on dark streets) for friendship and white Catholics and Protestants tend to be overwhelmingly friendly to blacks whether they are engaging or not.

Anyway, I wish you the very best in your future.

—— Comments ——

Sarah writes:

Of course you are not running a match making service, but after reading the note from the young black man who wanted to find a good wife I thought of this blog. A blog is just a small picture of a person’s life, but I’ve been following her lovely blog for some time now and am deeply impressed and inspired by this young black woman’s lovely feminine nature as portrayed in her blog. Perhaps he would be encouraged to see such a young lady…just to know they exist.

Laura writes:

Thank you. There are other traditionally-minded black women who run blogs. They and their readers could be an excellent resource for someone like the Young Man from Massachusetts.

Forta Leza writes:

I am frankly skeptical of this story. In the black community, there is a huge sex ratio imbalance in favor of marriage-minded men.

Assuming this poster is not just pulling your leg, the problem is most likely the uncomfortable reality that with a few isolated exceptions, black girls are sexually unappealing to men of all races. [See discussion below about this statement, which I completely reject as impossible to prove and uncivil to state. If this were true, there would be almost no blacks at all.]

In general, when people assert that they cannot find a suitable spouse, the problem is that their standards are too high.

Laura writes:

I know for a fact that this is not a joke and that the Young Man from Massachusetts is genuine.

Alissa writes:

I live in an African country and I think the answer to Young Man from Massachusetts is this: travel to Africa. Don’t just look in the USA. There are more Roman Catholic African women who opt for early marriage. Of course the language and cultural barrier may pose some troubles. The Christian African men may not be quite fond of you “dipping in their pool.” Or you could try Brazilian women of African descent (they are around 50 percent African at least) who are Christian.

Terry Morris writes:

Taken in context of the entirety of what your black correspondent wrote to you, I’m rather confused by his complaint against your assertion that interracial marriages are “often imprudent, selfish and confounding.” After all, you did not say that this is always the case.

Nevertheless, I gather from what he wrote that the general rule you laid down likely applies to him too since he seems willing to so easily give up his principle of marrying within his race for the sake of marrying early.

While I can certainly sympathize with your correspondent on the issue of marrying early (I was married at twenty), at the time I was searching for a wife I had a couple of standards that made the pickings very slim even then. But I cannot imagine that I would have lowered these standards for the sake of marrying early. To do so would have been imprudent, selfish, and confounding.

Roger G. writes:

Oh, good heavens.  A moral, intelligent young black man who wants a traditionalist wife.  Maybe you have no idea of the legions of utterly fantastic black women who would gladly accept Catholicism and traditionalism to get a husband like you.  One is my admin – too old for you, but wonderful, and an absolute beauty queen.  So would all her friends, and some of them are beauty queens too.  Please, please don’t deprive black women still further, when the supply is already so heartbreakingly small.

Go to the usual nonCatholic social places and events where young people conduct courtship rituals.  The task may be arduous, but everyone likes positive reinforcement, and you will be gratified by the response.  Don’t disdain the Protestant churches and their functions.  By no means do you have to hide your faith or your purpose.  The need is so dire, they will gladly surrender a daughter; Paris vaut bien une messe.

Ali Sina is the pseudonym of a Muslim apostate who hosts the websites faithfreedom.org and alisina.org.  Unfortunately both are down now, but (hopefully still) one of his email addresses is faithfreedom2@gmail.com.  Contact him; he’ll be glad to help.  He has written wonderful advice on how a young man should present himself to a girl, virtuously and respectfully, but also with assurance and self command.  It includes the alpha male stuff, and maybe you could consider it game (I despise the term), but without the filth.  You would have to judge the young woman’s sincerity about accepting your values, and her ability to do so permanently.  But oh boy, there will be no shortage of candidates.

As for the engaging and nonthreatening thing, well, Laura is right there, too – as she is about everything except free trade and flying saucers.  The segregation is always black self segregation.   My rugby club, every rugby club, welcomes blacks – and everyone else, for that matter.  The very few who show up almost always – virtually every single time – leave for an all black athletic activity; I’m talking forty years of experience here.  Though it may be because speed, strength, and aggression are at a premium in rugby, and so blacks feel themselves at a disadvantage.

Which engenders another idea.  Rugby wives and girlfriends have female friends, and hate seeing happy bachelors.  Unattached women also stop to watch – undoubtedly because of an intense interest in the sport.

Daniël O. writes:

With great interest have I read the story by a Young Man from Massachusetts.

I would like to add that in a fuzzy logical way, the story is objectively false, but subjectively true. Based on mere reason, it is evident that there are enough black women who are (potentially) traditionalist or Roman Catholic – or generally Christian orthodox. I do not think it is impossible for an evangelical leaning black young woman to become a Roman Catholic. Perhaps one should sometimes visit these evangelical churches, as long as one comes back to the Mother Church. Seek and you will find.

However, based on experience, I know how difficult it is to find the right spouse. This is not only the case for black men, but for all men — I have had the same difficulties, and I am white. It is not good for men to be alone. In fact, I believe it is not just traditionalist and orthodox men who have this problem; traditionalist and orthodox women have so as well. Moreover, potentially traditionalist and orthodox women often do not know they are traditionalist and orthodox until they have met the right man. That is why men are supposed to be priests of their household. I have seen several examples of this.

A major problem, however, is that there are not many institutions left for these men and women to meet. Given that most churches are no longer institutions of traditionalism and Christian orthodoxy, it is increasingly difficult for traditionalist and orthodox men and women to find spouses. Therefore, it is essential that we find more ways to rebuild or to mimic these institutions. With mimicking, I mean things such as a traditionalist ‘dating’ website. I hate the very idea of such a website, but perhaps we need to think outside the box.

Last but not least, I want to add that the Supremes were right. You can’t hurry love.

Fitzgerald writes:

I once knew a young black traditionalist Catholic in San Diego. Not only was he Catholic, but a Latin mass traditionalist to boot which further diminished his opportunities for marrying a black woman which he actively desired. He was mostly resigned to the fact he would need to find a serious black woman to convert if he was to marry within his race and religion. Having trafficked heavily with traditionalist Catholics on both coasts, I believe he is the sole black I ever personally encountered, which is truly sad. I do know friends in the deep South where there are pockets of black Anglo Catholics, traditionalist Anglican converts typically, but they are a small minority.

On the subject of interracial marriages, just to be clear, I have found your strong, principled stand against it refreshingly courageous. Please keep up the noble and good work. I, like most of my white cohorts, have nothing against blacks as a race and have no problem consorting with them on all levels save romantic entanglements and have a strong aversion to racial bigotry. But I am not blind or dismiss the differences in the races out of hand as there are definite distinctions.

Laura writes:

Thank you.

Roger G. writes:

We race realists are once again demonstrating our hatred for the black race. : – )

Young Man from Massachusetts writes:

Thank you for putting my post on your website. I decided to write in once more to clarify a few points for you and your readers.

First, I do not particularly want to marry a white woman or have an interracial marriage of any sort. I wrote in to state that interracial marriages happen for some people in the event of their failing to find a potential spouse within their own racial or cultural group.

Second, I would like to take issue with some of your readers who expressed skepticism and confusion about my situation. The assumption that black marriage-minded women abound is false. The average American woman (black women included) is interested in dating casually for a decade (from ages 18-28) while she determines where she wants go in life. Such a woman is not marriage-minded but rather is a woman who wants a male companion to latch onto until she is ready to settle down in her early thirties. But then again, expecting to meet a black Catholic woman who understands that motherhood is not a mere hobby to take up in one’s thirties may perhaps amount to having “high standards” according to one of your readers.

I included the link to the 2011 Pew Research Report on marriage rates among young Americans to make clear to your readers that marriage is not the norm for 18-29 year olds. If only 20 percent of 18-29 year olds were married in 2010, where is a traditionally inclined man expected to find a spouse in such a limited pool? Most black college-educated women are more interested in an MD, JD or PhD than they are in a husband or a family. I know this for a fact having recently graduated from university.

Lastly, the idea that black women are “unattractive” to most men or that they have an extremely difficult time in the marriage market is a canard. According to Stanford Law Prof. Ralph Richard Banks, nine out of every ten black married men has a black wife. Thus, the idea that black women cannot find a husband because of mass interracial marriages between black men and women of other races is a joke. Simply put, the black women who struggle in the marriage market are women who submit themselves to men of bad character who abandon them or women who do not understand the role marriage plays as a foundation for family life.

I would recommend to your readers a book by Prof. Ralph Richard Banks’ entitled “Is Marriage for White People?” This book clearly details how marriage is disappearing among college-educated middle class and upper middle class black Americans. It is a fantastic social science book that I think some of your readers would enjoy.

I appreciate your response to my post and also thank your readers for their feedback.

Laura writes:

You are welcome.

 A few clarifications:

No one here said that black women are unattractive to most men. The well-documented disparity between marriage and cohabitation rates of black men with whites and black women with whites has been repeatedly discussed.

Also commenters acknowledged that it is difficult to find a marriage-minded black woman in her twenties. It is also difficult to find a marriage-minded white woman in her twenties. Nevertheless, these women do exist. I understand that it is very hard to find them.

I strongly dispute “Young Man’s” points about black women and marriage. To say black women are ultimately frustrated in finding permanent mates or marrying (it is not just a question of marriage unfortunately but of having a steady live-in) is not to say that their own choices are not partly to blame for this fact. “Young Man” points to Banks’s book. I have not read the book but the figure he cites is for all black marriages (and it is unclear the date of the figure). When we look at more recent figures, we do see a serious trend  of black men marrying non-black women. The rate for interracial marriage nearly tripled for blacks between 1980 to 2008. As I wrote, as of 2008, 22 percent of black male newlyweds, or more than one in five, married a woman who was not black, a figure that is likely higher today. Of course, that does not mean that interracial marriage is the most important factor in why black women do not marry, but it is increasingly a factor. After all, these are men who are willing to marry.

If we look at popular culture, we see the frustration of black women, who must also contend with the fact that many black men are in prison. As Steve Sailer wrote:

Black women’s resentment of intermarriage is now a staple of daytime talk shows, hit movies like Waiting to Exhale, and magazine articles. Black novelist Bebe Moore Campbell described her and her tablemates’ reactions upon seeing a black actor enter a restaurant with a blonde: “In unison, we moaned, we groaned, we rolled our eyes heavenward . . . Then we all shook our heads as we lamented for the 10,000th time the perfidy of black men, and cursed trespassing white women who dared to ‘take our men.”’

“Young Man” is correct that marriage is more and more a marginal phenomenon among blacks. In many black communities, as many as 70 percent of children are born to unwed mothers. But that does not mean marriage is not desired by the vast majority of black women. Yes, their own choices are to blame for the fact that they cannot marry and yes, many do not want marriage in their twenties. But still over the course of their lifetime, most black women, it appears, want to be tied to one man.

Mary writes:

Forta Leza wrote: “…the problem is most likely the uncomfortable reality that with a few isolated exceptions, black girls are sexually unappealing to men of all races.”

I assume this is the comment “Young Man” was reacting to; I was taken aback by it as well. I’ve tried to read it from several angles thinking I must have misunderstood to no avail.

I have sympathy for “Young Man’s” position, as I have known other Catholic young people who long to get married and can’t find someone suitable. I know it may not sound appealing but many have had success by casting a wider geographical net through the use of reputable Catholic dating sites. They simplify the process because you only match yourself with those with whom you share values, faith, etc. I’m sure there are some cranks but I would guess most participants are serious-minded. I know of several successful marriages which started in this manner.

Laura writes:

Oh, I apologize. In the rush of comments yesterday, I did not see that statement.

I disagree emphatically with it. I don’t see how one can make such a generalization. If it were true, there would be almost no blacks at all. Given that it is a statement that is virtually impossible to prove, it is uncivil to even make it.

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