Letters to Young Black Men: Introduction

It appears that many people are concerned about the worsening conditions in the black community of America. And let’s just be honest: we are in a bad way, generally speaking. I say, “generally speaking,” because there are some blacks who are not doing badly at all. But the black community, in general, is not doing that well. You don’t believe that? Just read the newspaper: we’re killing one another, robbing our parents and grandparents, raping our women, selling death to the dying, going to jail wholesale, murdering our babies, not taking care of our responsibilities, and wiping out our future.

Why are we sinking in the sea of murder, drugs and mayhem? How can things be turned around? I believe that the problem lies largely with the black man, and I also believe that the solution lies with the black man. I am convinced that the key to turning black America around is to turn black men around. For any group of people to rise, their men must rise. And after they have risen, they must stay standing no matter what, and take their God-given position as the leaders of their families, churches, communities or what have you. These letters aim to help with that rising and standing.

These letters have been written in the midst of a very hectic schedule of traveling, editing an international publication, and working on several other publishing projects. These letters have also been written in the midst of being a black man, and a black husband and father, with all of the great and awful experiences that go with such an existence. I said that to say this: As I write these letters, I am not in some ivory tower somewhere philosophizing about life as a young black man. Rather, I am right in the middle of life as a young black man.

In short, these letters come from a sincere heart of a black man to the hearts of young black men.

Dear Y.B.M. (Please note that Y.B.M. will stand for “Young Black Man” throughout the book): I believe that this is a book that can absolutely revolutionize your life if you will let it.

See this book as a sign-post on the road of life, pointing you in the right direction. Read it, read it again, and then pass it on to another young black man struggling to find his way in this sometimes confusing and hostile world.

Daniel Whyte III
Tuskegee University Campus
Tuskegee, Alabama

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