A Call to Amendment: No Child Left Behind Act of 2001

No_Child_Left_Behind_Act

Overview

The No Child Left behind Act of 2001, established during the Bush administration would ensure that all children receive fair and equal access to quality education. More specifically, in 2002, the policy required that all states test their students in reading, and math starting from grades three through grade eight, and again when the student reached high school level where students were to meet or exceed reading and math requirements. In addition, the act would help close the gap of achievement for students [according to the United States Department of Education] by providing quality education where focus was on (a) accountability and assurance to disadvantaged children, (b) flexibility that allowed federal funds to be used to improve student achievement, (c) research based education which placed emphasis on programs and practices that proved effective through scientific research, and (d) parent options which provided choices for Title 1 school parents (No Child Left Behind Act 2001). However, at present, the policy though well written has not taken shape, and neither has there been offered relief to support all students for which the policy was created other than to transfer a student passing from the school where the environment has become academically unsafe. Moreover, because of racial disparities and economic conditions such as poverty in districts the children are further subjugated to even poorer learning environments where there are meager classroom materials and less than adequate instruction. Therefore, this article will propose change to the current policy,  an amendment;  along with, recommendations to abolish areas where the policy has been breached by providing information which is overlooked and or ignored in current more up to date research concerning the No Child Left Behind Act overall.

Problems with Current Policy

Firstly, there are a number of reoccurring problems with standard testing as it pertains to the NCLB Act, and these must be dealt with to ensure that all students taking the exam have equal success. It is the case, that nearly every child entering the public school system [particularly] among the African American and Hispanic students exhibit ongoing failure even while there is instruction for the same.  Hence, the occurrence of such failure among the students would beg the question to ask is it really a fact that students are dumb or dumbed down?  Reportedly, blacks currently score lower on vocabulary, reading and math tests; including, measurement of aptitude and intelligence than European Americans, and the authors stated that “On some tests the typical American black still scores below 75 percent of the American whites on the same test (Jencks & Phillips, 1998, para.1). Accordingly, teachers/educators are required to ‘teach’ the test rather than teaching regular curriculum that stimulates the intellect, or creativity in the student. It is the case that much of the school year is taken over with this type programing, and the morale of both students and educators is low because of failure to pass the test. Hence, armed with this information the premise of reauthorization of the act is of no regard. Consequently, the premise of reauthorization only acts to restore previously enacted documents which to date have failed to yield positive results. As a result, the failure of the practice in testing students has not fulfilled the element of improved research. Therefore, a total amendment, and or more acceptable replacement is needed.

Secondly, the promise to close the achievement gap as enacted by law has failed, and reportedly, the gap has not been lessoned for years. According to a New York Times (2009) article, “’No Child’ Law is not Closing the Racial Gap”, it is apparent there has not been an improvement in years.

Sam Dillion (2009) wrote:

Between the year 2004 and 2009 when the article was written that even though black and Hispanic elementary, middle and high school students all scored much higher on the federal test than three decades ago most of the gains made were not recent but during the desegregation efforts of the 1970s and 80s and was well before the No Child law which in the official description admonishes to close the achievement gap (Dillon, 2009, para. 3).

The Official Description

SEC. 1. SHORT TITLE

Begun and held at the City of Washington on Wednesday, the third day of January, two thousand and one.

An Act

To close the achievement gap with accountability, flexibility, and choice, so that no child is left behind. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled [No Child Left Section 1].

According to the Center of Education Policy (as reported by USA Today), there are 43,000 schools in the US that fail, or have failed which means 48 percent of students have made no progress since the enactment of the law. This information is troubling, because the only relief noticeable to parents is the opportunity once a child fails to transfer to a district passing. Hence, this too brings problems added to problems when transportation becomes a problem. Nevertheless, the report is telling that in Wisconsin (for example) the failure was extremely low at 11 percent. In explanation, of the failed standards for the federal exam policymakers have predicted failure rates of 82 percent, however, there are claims as well that the statistics are in error. In essence, to keep with the premise of requirement by law that every student perform at grade level by the year 2014 is impossible and has failed according to some educators (USA Today, 2014, para.1).

Thirdly, there is variance in the degree of difficulty as it pertains to the standardized testing. For example, in some school districts there are different tests given. In the USA Today article there is information given to that effect. The authors wrote, “State’s scores varied widely”. For example, in Georgia, 27% of schools did not meet targets, compared to 81% in Massachusetts and 16% in Kansas” In addition, the authors stated that even state officials argue that the act is do for rewrite, and further that officials offer little hope when lawmakers cannot agree on how to fix the problem of differences in difficulty of the testing between state, or, to amend it (USA Today, 2014, para. 5). Consequently, there are several reasons given for the variant in difficulty in certain states:

  1. Immigrant students
  2. Low income students, and
  3. State requirement to raise expectation in the number of students who pass each year (USA Today, 2015, para.6).

As a result, of these facts, the essence of the federal law which is intended to close the achievement gap by realizing equal achievement with regard to students at disadvantage has failed and is biased.

The Violation of Civil Rights is a Violation of Ethics

Fourthly, educators across the nation are seeming at their wits end and are of great travail concerning the premise of federal testing calling the test biased, however, advocates of civil rights concerning the original intent offer justice and equality as the Department of Education pronounced that biased testing is a civil rights issue and an ethical one as well. In an article, “Is it a student’s civil right to take a federally mandated standardized test?” author, Lyndsey Layton (2015) wrote:

Removing the requirement for annual testing would be a devastating step backward, for it is very hard to make sure our education system is serving every child well when we don’t have reliable, comparable achievement data on every child every year,” Kati Haycock, president of the Education Trust, said in recent testimony before the Senate education panel. Her group joined 20 civil rights organizations to lobby Congress to keep the requirement to test all children each year in math and ­reading (Layton, 2015, para. 4).

However, is this statement a fair assumption to say that the removal of the federal test is against civil rights? Conversely, teachers agree that teaching the test while forsaking the art of creativity and free expression surely takes away human rights of the student to think for themselves.

In an interview, a former educator and social worker detailed what many instructors go through in teaching and testing. During her interview, Jacqueline James (2015) was asked to (a) Recount factors of her work, (b) Factors leading to the testing being biased in her opinion, (c) Why she left the school system, (d) What the morale was like for students and faculty, and (e) Suggestion of changes that would contribute to the law.

She wrote:

Hello Everyone,

My name is Jacqueline Jordan. I have five years experience in the school system, including, elementary, middle and high school education. I held positions as substitute teacher, assistant and as a social worker. I also hold a Bachelor of Social Science with a minor in Education, and a Master of Education with a minor in Public Policy; as well as, a Master of Organizational Management.

As an educator, some of the main factors that were attributed to our work was tied to testing. Hence, the main issues were that I and other educators were frustrated that our students’ performance was not meeting expectations. Conversely, exam scores were lower than previous years and we spent many days and months trying to figure out why our students were struggling, and after interviewing students in their perspective classes and schools we were told that they did not understand the question. Therefore, it was determined that the questions on the tests had nothing in common with how certain groups of children think or rationalize.

I feel the testing is biased due to the overall testing results for students who otherwise pass their assignment during the entire school year only to take the test and fail. Moreover, the testing is set for certain populations of students who may be at a disadvantage. Hence, from my experience many racial minorities struggle to pass the test because of no relation to what they have learned, and neither to their personal lives. This too, is one of the reasons I left the district, because I feel it is not fair to our minority students.

Honestly speaking, the morale for the majority of faculty was low because of dissatisfaction in the work. Consequently, low morale among the faculty was the reason for high turnover in staff and low performance, and frankly, from my viewpoint the student morale was lower due to many not being able to understand, nor, were they accurately understand the assignments given. Hence, this occurrence caused behavioral issues, students skipping class, incomplete assignments and or unfocused students without the ability to engage. Therefore, all this overall also caused parents to feel as if their children were not being effectively taught by the school system which added to all parties being frustrated—parents, students and faculty. In general, the environment for most students was stressful due to non-relational material.

There are quite a few areas to policy and procedures that I would like to see amended:

  1. Teachers should not have to teach from a manual and or for a test.
  2. The material learned should be based on real world solutions.
  3. The students success and being promoted should not be based on the one test, especially when the student works diligently throughout the year to pass their assignments otherwise (Jacqueline Jordan, interview by Kayla Daily, October, 11, 2015, 4:19 p.m., interview Electronic Communication).

Dispelling Myths

A fifth reason, brings attention to a telling fact of how the academic success of students may be hampered is the myth that black students are not as smart as white or non black students, and this assumption may certainly seem realistic if one places judgement in relation to test scores, however, one would have something other than assumption to rely on. Jencks & Phillips (1998) argued that theorists promote the idea that low scores are attached to family background and or family environment which can be taken generally to say that all black people are dumb, unable to learn, and thus, unable these factors in turn can affect; or rather, do affect test scoring.

The authors explained:

In 1978 the Nigerian anthropologist John Ogbu suggested that cast-like minorities throughout the world tended to do poorly in school, even when they were visually indistinguishable from the majority. Later, Ogbu argued that because blacks had such limited opportunities in America, they developed an ‘oppositional’ culture that equated academic success with ‘acting white’ (Jencks & Phillips, 1998, p.6, para.4).

In general, the rejection of assumptive views tend to hide bias, or rather lend to biased thinking, and along with the awareness that there may bias lurking amidst the exams one can also be aware that text books containing the answers are not made available to the impoverished districts. In her interview, Jacqueline James (2015) alluded to that fact saying that ‘the children’ said they did not understand the questions (James, 2015). Hence, this begs the question that asks if the children do not understand even though the educators are teaching the tests then there is more than an agenda set up for their fail, and why is there a manual to teach from instead of a book? Could it be that the curriculum for the exam is not being taught? In this instance, a proposed plan for a policy amendment or rewrite is simple, either stop the federal exam or make the materials needed for the exam available to all students everywhere. In other words, there is no gap if there is not one continually created. Accordingly, the US Department of Education has promised equal access to education for all students. Hence, if one is to support the breach in civil rights as advocacy outlines then one would need to consider the evidence presented speaking of no access to testing materials equally, and the propensity that the teachers are given manual over the actual textbook. Therefore, the premise of testing as a civil right has been breached and has failed, because not only are teachers hindered but there is pressure for them to teach what they do not know may be the wrong material.

The No Child Left behind Act is a Breach of Budgeting

In an article, there is evidence that federal funding may be misappropriated. Hence, with funding and budget cuts so steep there must be need to look further into the matter. It is the case, that “Prior to 2001 and the implementation of the law that appropriations went up only $3 billion per year”, however, after are up 64% according to a CBS News report. Elizabeth Harrington (2011) wrote that from the years 2000 to 2001 the appropriation rate increased by 9%. However, after implementation of the program appropriations were up to 33% which is $42 billion (2001) and climbed to $56.2 billion (2002). Hence, it is notable that more funds are spent yearly, yet, the children fail more so even with all the programming.

Here is a further breakdown of expenditures according to CBS News (2011) report:

  • 1997 – $33.52 billion
  • 1998 – $35.67 billion
  • 1999 – $38.31 billion
  • 2000 – $38.44 billion
  • 2001 – $42.06 billion
  • 2002 – $56.17 billion
  • 2003 – $63.25 billion
  • 2004 – $67.21 billion
  • 2005 – $71.47 billion
  • 2006 – $100.04 billion (due to a jump in Federal Family Education Loans)
  • 2007 – $67.12 billion
  • 2008 – $68.57 billion
  • 2009 – $138.00 billion (regular spending of $39.88 billion plus $98.23 billion under the Recovery Act)
  • 2010 – $63.00 billion (Harrington, 2011, para.4).

There is no need to address the overall budget implemented concerning the NCLB when there is evidence of an astronomical amount of federal dollars spent even while the children fail at a rapid pace yearly. Hence, this begs the question where does the money really go? There is no reauthorization needed, no restore of the same disparaging occurrence as it relates to the law. That said, policymakers must address these issues immediately and reconsider their programming is not working and is wasting away tax payer dollars.

Lips & Fienberg (2007) wrote, that “Federally funded full time employees in state education agencies worked to implement education programs three times more than the number of employees working at the Department of Education (Lips & Fienberg, 2007, para. 3). Hence, here are workers making money for programing that is no good when the consideration should be on the text books, and other needed materials that make for a successful test score. There has already been evidence brought that the children understand that they do not understand the questions on the test when they have worked all year to learn. In essence, more money should be spent in the school to pay the districts’ teachers, and less money for programming that does not work. Therefore, the only cut to budget should state in policy to quit bogus federal government expenditures, because after all paying the teachers and funding the school so that all is equal access is the mission of NCLB.

Summary

The NCLB has failed to do what it was created to do in closing the achievement gap academically, because the children still fail and is in breach of promise. There is variance in the degree of difficulty involving the exam across states which promotes the premise of biased testing standards and is in breach of policy as the occurrence does not promote equality; and, which leads to a breach of civil rights.  The academic success of students has been hampered severely because of myths that non whites cannot learn as favorably as white students. Hence, this thought is promoted further as it relates to tests scores more favorable to the white students. There is evidence that federal budget as it pertains to NCLB may be misappropriated where money is spent implementing programs rather than actual research to find error in testing.

Conclusion

Finally, as it pertains to amendment the NCLB has left a disparaging mood among educators across the nation to adamantly lift up a cry out for those who stand to lose more from standardized testing. It is the case that the states have failed the students of which the need for educational equality is upheld. Hence, for blacks and other minorities who will take their place in the world, that is,  a world in need of equality where their fate should not be determined by a test. Hence, the premise of education and all its characteristics should say in policy all is equal, and not according to multiple choice, unless the multiples of choices are discerned from a creative mind with the ability to think its way through the problems presented with logic and sound reasoning. Policy makers should then, take the evidence presented here; along with, the research provided to make sound judgments and see that what is happening in the school system is questionable, and is not equal access as the law is written. Rewrite it then, make it plain to all that you mean what you say is the cry of all who speak of civil rights, on the streets and now in education. Notably, change will come—with an equal policy that truly stands with all accepted as equal.

Related Articles  

Why Poor Schools Can’t Win at Standardized Testing

Not Child Left Behind is not Closing a Racial Gap

Education Spending Up 64% Under No Child Left Behind But Test Scores Improve Little

The Black-White Test Score Gap. CHAPTER ONE  

The Administrative Burden of No Child Left Behind 

Is it a student’s civil right to take a federally mandated standardized test?

Report: Half of US Schools Fail Federal Standards

How No Child Left Behind Benefits African Americans 

Civil Rights: The Fight to be Equal with God

Selma_to_Montgomery_MarchesTo be discriminated against in America is so common that those who live in the wake of it come to expect it in some form or another daily if they are awakened to see it. In fact, to be black in America is rough, difficult to be so; however, the problem is not the people who are progenitors of racism and discrimination it is the people who believe themselves equal to the whites perception of themselves. This is not to say that in any way should so called blacks be continually mistreated, or to place themselves in harms way; however, to come to a realistic view and see that if white people see themselves as God in their own eyes, and they rule the country—then also in their eyes every single person that comes to America willingly or not is considered to be, or should become a servant. Consequently,  there is a problem with thinking that everyone should be a servant, and the problem with that thought is those who feel that way have a tendency to mistreat people. Another view is that people who are descendants of slave owners typically have a mindset that America, the nation is theirs because they built it, and that if their money paid for the country to become great; then  regardless of how they came about that money while committing immoral acts against mankind in their minds they are God, that is, God has the money, God owns the land, God writes the policy, God is America’s Dream, and because of this thinking of themselves as God by the white people others should just look over the fact that GOD is racist. In this article there is discussion concerning current policy in regards to civil rights initiatives so called blacks pursuit to become like God.

The Fight to be like God

Of course, today, with President Obama’s position as head of the country some people  may consider that there is not discrimination any longer, or that the country has had a breakthrough since he took office, however, the election of a mixed race only adds fuel to the fact that Obama is half black and half God to the whites, or rather, a pawn to be used by those who to many in their own minds are GOD. In explanation, the CEO of the National Policy Institute, Sam Dickson (2014) spoke concerning the policy set  during the writing of the Declaration of Independence for the country’s break with their motherland Britain, In his video, “America: The God that Failed”, he said that the section of the declaration which speaks about ‘inalienable rights’ was taken off the paper of Britain’s document and placed into the American one. In that he stated that “a man without a country” cannot possibly have the type dedication to the cause of those who call America their home and built it (Dickson, 2014). Speaking frankly,  Dickson is saying that no one can be equal with God–one nation under God rule. The Civil Rights Act of 1964, was created from legislature in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution that mentions rhetoric such as ‘alienable rights given by God—life , liberty and pursuit of freedom’, and ,’ all men are created equal’; however, at the time of the signing did not include blacks. Further, a realistic view of this is that no one can be what God says he is not—equal or otherwise, and it is a fair statement to say that words written by God becomes law. Consequently, here one should be reminded that the three-fifth human clause has yet to be amended. It is the case that great strides have been made as  result of rallies of civil disobedience to God, and notably the subservient blacks did not ask for much.

Initiatives in the Fight to be like God

Dye (2010) wrote that there are differences of opinion concerning racism in the country where whites think not much of it and do not think it a problem, and blacks see it differently stating there is a serious problem with racism (Dye, 2010).  Although, civil rights issues most popular are covered in the legislation there are others that have yet to be such as police brutality which is really brutality by God in uniform and the right to not be murdered in the streets, unarmed like dogs is an ongoing pursuit. Hence, the initiatives set pertaining to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is paled in comparison to these unsolved. More specifically, civil pursuits of equality  to be like God have been broad and include many milestones in the rights of people of color in all areas of living—mainly protection against discrimination for:  (a) publics places, but not the right to assemble peaceably, but also includes equal access to schools and or equal access to, restaurants, restrooms, (b) outlaw of Jim Crowe laws which prevented access to voting, (c) employment for black people and equal pay standards, and (d) housing which include mortgage lending discrimination and the tendency for landlords to be slum lords. Presently, however, there have been several amendments to the act which now include protection to women in the work place and working while pregnant, right to choice of healthcare, gay or sodomite marriage rights, right to not be bullied, and several court related rights that are written also but are still unequal in quality and perception in the pursuit to be God’s equal. For example, although there is legislation to state that negroes can work along side God instead of being relegated to back doors, cleaning God’s toilet or watching God’s children black women can now work alongside white women and may be as  qualified even more so in some cases or equally as qualified but still make less than their non black colleagues. Additionally, black women and men are lowest paid who work along side their white colleagues, and who all are degreed status; however, here is where the inequality lies, that is, blacks chosen last over whites and even if chosen are paid considerably less than whites and this occurrence can happen in the hiring process. In explanation consider the following scenario:

A local auto parts company is hiring for a management position. After the interviews, however, the Human Resources Department has narrowed the search for a manager down to two candidates who both hold the degreed status required for the position, and they both have the required amount of management experience needed– their names are Christopher Columbus, and Michael Spears. Hence, unable to decide between the two the hiring manager calls both in for a second interview. In the interviews; however, no salary is ever discussed, but  in a meeting between the hiring manager and her boss is where the salary for the position was initially decided that the position would pay $32,000 per year. Additionally, after the interviews the team decides that they will not hire Christopher Columbus and call Michael in for a third and final interview where they will offer his package at that time. Subsequently, at the interview they tell Michael that the position pays $10.00 an hour which is $19,200 per year instead of the $32,000 a year that the hiring managers had previously planned to offer. Hence, this begs the question and asks why? It is the case, that not only is Michael an African American but the team sees that as a chance to save money, and decided that he has the skills needed to fit the job description; however, their decision to not pay him equally as unto the white candidate because of his race is discrimination.

The Right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness equal to God

How unfortunate, that anyone living in a country as great as America would be subjugated to such biases and discrimination, and one could say that the white man was discriminated against as well, however, the opportunity will await the white over black in greater measure. Moreover,  this type discrimination is difficult to prove and applicants should obtain the ability to seek out information regarding pay in a field or for positions before applying. Generally, however, in the interview applicants are discouraged from raising questions about pay before the subject is brought up. Hence, this occurrence removes any chance of the applicant being warned concerning the agenda against them. In his address concerning women and equal pay discrimination, President Obama stated that unequal pay is not just a woman’s issue but a family issue and the aforementioned scenario addresses that more so, because men are still the heads of the household in many cases, and although in so called black families there are women who are forced into the role of head of the house there is a need for men to be paid as much as white men in the workplace so they too can take care of their families.

President Obama wrote concerning the  Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act:

Because while this bill bears her name, Lilly knows this story isn’t just about her. It’s the story of women across this country still earning just 78 cents for every dollar men earn – women of color even less – which means that today, in the year 2009, countless women are still losing thousands of dollars in salary, income and retirement savings over the course of a lifetime. But equal pay is by no means just a women’s issue – it’s a family issue. It’s about parents who find themselves with less money for tuition or child care; couples who wind up with less to retire on; households where, when one breadwinner is paid less than she deserves, that’s the difference between affording the mortgage – or not; between keeping the heat on, or paying the doctor’s bills – or not. And in this economy, when so many folks are already working harder for less and struggling to get by, the last thing they can afford is losing part of each month’s paycheck to simple discrimination. So in signing this bill today, I intend to send a clear message: That making our economy work means making sure it works for everyone. That there are no second class citizens in our workplaces, and that it’s not just unfair and illegal – but bad for business – to pay someone less because of their gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion or disability. And that justice isn’t about some abstract legal theory, or footnote in a casebook – it’s about how our laws affect the daily realities of people’s lives: their ability to make a living and care for their families and achieve their goals (Obama, 2015).

Notably, the pursuit in the fight to be equal to God is ongoing for both genders of the black race, and future policies should reflect change in the areas of: (a) three fifth human amendment, (b) raising the minimum raise, (c) equal fair pay for black men and women, according to their educational level, and more thought and effort placed on anti-bullying legislation to include police brutality.

In the strides to become equal to God, blacks have not gained strides equal to whites in the fifty plus years of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 execution. Moreover, in the shadow of the attitude of  whites in America blacks made a huge mistake in the supposed fight of equality, that is, that God cannot accept the people who they crossed the Atlantic to steal them  from their families, a people of culture, of a continent of African people who were sold into slavery. In addition, so called blacks would be wise to remember that in the eyes of America the slaves cannot be equal to their master whether in education, the workplace, health or welfare, that the servant is not equal to their God, and pursuit to find a place equal is for the white man a dream but for the black man in America who covet such a place has become a nightmare. That a said the pursuit continues.

Related Articles

 America: The God that Failed

Dye, T.R. (2010).  Understanding public policy (13th ed.).  Longman: Pearson Prentice Hall. ISBN: 9780205757428. Custom ISBN: 9781256054160

 Strengthening Civil Rights 

Civil Rights Issues

Democracy or Tyranny

blackpanthers

 If you mean the size of the government as in Big Government where there is too much power given to certain facets thereof then I am inclined to agree, because here I must speak out about police brutality and all that occurs because of narcissism turned loose on the public, or rather, a particular portion.

In speaking of so- called ‘freedom’ and ‘liberty’ and ‘justice’ then someone has definitely missed it here.

Let me explain. It is the case, until recently, or rather I will say times past that I used to believe that when I called the police that I was within my rights as a citizen to be protected under the 1st Amendment to the constitution, however that has changed because I no longer trust the government. In saying that I no longer trust the government means that I no longer trust the police, I no longer trust them. Why? According to the amendment supposedly all people have  a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness, but its not that way because I can’t see that fully for everyone. I don’t trust them, the police, because the entire system is corrupt across the board, racism and harassment, and discrimination and murder. I do not trust them, and then if that were not enough they allowed to claim all- out- war on unarmed people; that is, military gear and all. For what? Strong arming? One has to ask since when does a city or state or country give permission for their enforcement to attack their citizens and then call that behavior a civil society when its barbaric?

David Boaz (1997) wrote:

Unfortunately, most governments fail to live up to Thomas Jefferson’s vision in two ways. First, they don’t do a good job of swiftly and surely apprehending and punishing those who violate our rights. Second, they seek to aggrandize themselves by taking on more and more power, intruding themselves into more aspects of our lives, demanding more of our money, and depriving us of our liberty. (Boaz, 1997).

I am inclined to agree, there is not a job doing anything except casting blame in this area. Most people killed at the hand of some mentally deranged cop are innocent. Oops, but they say the victim brought it on themselves, especially the 12 year old playing with a toy gun. Yes, innocent.

I think government, is overpowering for some citizens [See: Third Ohio Man Wrongly Accused of 1975 Murder Exonerated].

Furthermore, Boaz (1997) stated further “This basic understanding of the distinction between society and the state, between the people and the rulers, has deep roots in Western civilization, going back to Samuel’s warning to the people of Israel that a king would take your sons, and your daughters, and your fields and to the Christian concept that the state is conceived in sin.”  (Boaz, 1997).

I can agree with that, except the Christian part. However, as it stands blacks are still banished to the field and treated lower than low in this country and government is the ring leader of all of it. That’s influence, that’s power! So you don’t like all the help with housing, with food, or living and take it out on us in the street?

Your Sunday Bread: Illegitimate? Bastard? Or Not of the Tribe–Hebrew Israelites Stand Up and Be Counted!

black-pregnant-woman11In America so called Blacks and other people of the Tribe of Yisra’el, have been stigmatized by the fact that most Hebrew women have, have had and still have today children born with no marital ties to the father; or so it seems. In fact, to further identify and bring home this truth so called blacks have been notorious gaining attention to their relational issues by coining phrases such as; ‘my baby mama, my baby daddy’, and this thinking further promoted by shows like Jerry Springer, Maury Povich and the like enlightened ‘drama seekers’ nationwide of Hebrews plight through DNA testing. Statistically, so called African American are the leading race of single, or one parent homes; mostly mothers and children left alone for various reasons; such as abandonment, prison, or through death.

Accordingly, in America 72% of the black population are fatherless children; or rather where a parent is absent from the home. There has to be separation in the two instances; hence, absent does not equate that the child has no father, because that would be biologically impossible. Furthermore, in countries across the globe other parents of the so called black community face the same plight but on a much smaller scale; Ireland was second (24.3 percent), followed by New Zealand (23.7 percent). Greece, Spain, Italy and Luxemborg had among the lowest percentages of children in single-parent homes.

Consequently, the question is now are the fatherless really the fatherless or is there more to meet the eye here? Moreover, are the children illegitimate or bastards as they have been tagged? The names are not so pronounced today as in the past but still a problem. Today many children are born without their fathers names on their birth certificates. A most harrowing fact is noted, that in times past the term bastard or illegitimate was used to identify a child born out of wed-lock. It is the case that families trying to keep a so called good name would actually send their daughters off to some convent where the unwed girl would deliver the child and the child placed for an adoption. Or there would be relatives out of town who would take the child in until she delivered and raise the child as their own; all this to save the face of the family. However, times have changed and mothers are choosing to raise their children, instead of, giving them away without the father in the home. My prayer is there will be healing and a new and fresh perspective that will help lessen the weight of guilt and shame that comes from this stereotypical thinking concerning the Hebrews.

The term Bastard is translated from the Hebrew term “Mamzer”, which means the same thing; except that it has nothing to do with the fatherless child; or an absent parent, but does concern the one whose seed conceived the babe. In earlier discussions we found out that according to Yah, a man and woman (women) are married when they have sexual intercourse. There is still an ongoing debate for some concerning this fact, however, debating doesn’t change truth. So let’s review.

“And the man said, “This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh. This one is called ‘woman,’ because she was taken out of man.” For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.” (Genesis 2:23,24).

One flesh means that the two join together and make one, and duly noted this act involves producing children together. “And Elohim blessed them, and Elohim said to them, “Bear fruit and increase, and fill the earth and subdue it, and rule over the fish of the sea, and over the birds of the heavens, and over all creatures moving on the earth.” (Genesis 1:28).

The significance of this truth from the beginning is the intention of sex has always been to make babies, of course it is enjoyable, because if it were not then no one would want to do it. Hence, we know that that sex joins a couple in marriage, and married people have babies. Selah.

However, Yah had specific rules for the Nation of Israel concerning his covenant with them: “Guard yourself, lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land where you are going, lest it be a snare in your midst.“ But break down their altars, and smash their pillars, and cut down their Ashĕrim – for you do not bow yourselves to another mighty one, for יהוה, whose Name is jealous, is a jealous Ěl – lest you make a covenant with the inhabitants of the land, and they whore after their mighty ones, and slaughter to their mighty ones, and one of them invites you and you eat of his slaughterings, and you take of his daughters for your sons, and his daughters whore after their mighty ones, and make your sons whore after their mighty ones.” (Exodus 34:12-16).

So Yah did not want the Children of Israel mingling with the inhabitants of the land, because there would be temptation to have sex with the women there and be led astray to idols, also the risk of fathering children with them. One may say that they did so through war. However, this is what the covenant is concerned with. Yah did not want impure children.

Today concerning the Hebrews: “And to the rest I say, not the Master: If any brother has an unbelieving wife, and she thinks well to live with him, let him not send her away. And a woman who has an unbelieving husband, and he thinks well to live with her, let her not send him away. For the unbelieving husband has been set-apart in the wife, and the unbelieving wife has been set-apart in the husband. Otherwise your children would be unclean, but now they are set-apart.” (1 Corinthians 7:12-14).

This thing about being unequally yoked with unbelievers is very misunderstood. For those of us who can identify with Christian teaching anyone outside the doors of the sect is to be avoided. However, this teaching is misleading. Yah is not talking about Christians or religion, or rather, believing if someone dosen’t go to church they don’t believe. It is the case that if one believes this way they are short sighted, because not going to church doesn’t equal no belief at all. In essence, He is talking about Hebrew marriage where one believes truth and the other does not; could be someone is still in the Christian mindset. Hence, one is redeemed and the other is not, and the premise could be not of the faith or not of the tribe. Hence, if Yah says ma’am sir, stay within your race, he means it.

Well this is taking us to a whole other place of enlightenment, because this is where the term “Mamzer” comes in concerning the bearing of children. Therefore, it is in the seed of the man which determines lineage. Hence, a Hebrew man can take a wife and the child still be Hebrew. However for the women, this is not the case, because the woman does not carry seed her children by someone outside of the tribe will be of another.

MAMZER (Heb. מַמְזֵר), usually translated as “bastard.” A child of a marriage forbidden in covenant. Or non Hebrew lineage.

“No one of illegitimate birth does enter the assembly of יהוה, even a tenth generation of his does not enter the assembly of יהוה.” (Dueteronomy 23:2).

The Book of Ezra says this, “And these were those who came up from Tel Melah, Tel Harsha, Kerub, Addan, Immer, but they were unable to show their fathers house, and their seed, whether they were from Yisra’el: Sons of Delayah, sons of Tobiyah, sons of Neqoda, six hundred and fifty-two; and of the sons of the priests; sons of Habayah, sons of Qots, sons of Barzillai, who took a wife of the daughters of Barzillai the Giladite and was called by (((THEIR))) name. These sought their register among those who were counted by genealogy, but they were not found, so they were barred from the priesthood as defiled. And the governor said to them they should not eat of the most set apart gifts until they stood up a priest with the Urim and Tummim. (Ezra 2:60-62)

Here is an explanation from the Jewish Encyclopedia, “BASTARD: In the English use of the word, a child neither born nor begotten in lawful wedlock; an illegitimate child. There is no Hebrew word of like meaning. The mamzer, rendered “bastard” in the A. V., is something worse than an illegitimate child. He is the offspring of a father and mother between whom there could be in law no binding betrothal: issuing either from adultery between a married woman and a man other than her husband, or from incest within the forbidden degrees of kinship or affinity defined in Lev. xviii. and xx. The child of a marriage simply forbidden, as that between a cohen and a divorced woman, is legitimate but “profane”; that is, a son can not officiate as a priest, a daughter is not eligible to marry a priest. But a mamzer, according to Deut. xxiii. 3, must not “enter the congregation of the Lord,” that is, marry an Israelite woman, “nor shall his tenth generation enter,” etc., which includes also the female mamzer (Ḳid. iii. 12; Mak. iii. 1). The older Halakah, however, was more rigorous, Akiba declaring any child of a forbidden connection a mamzer (Yeb. iv. 12, 13; Yer. ib. 6b; Bab. ib. 44a, 49a).” (See: http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/2648-bastard).

The core of this may not be what one expects; however, for those suffering guilt shame and remorse because the father chose not to stay be assured that the man is at fault if he does not find favor with a wife and walks away without giving a certificate of divorce. Being uneducated and not following Yah has its consequence; in this case for the children. However, the good news is that they are not illegitimate if they have a father; no child is. What makes them illegitimate is difficult to hear (not the seed of the tribe), but we have new knowledge and strength to recover. Press on.

For further reading see:Jewish Virtual Library
http://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/judaica/ejud_0002_0013_0_13122.html

Misunderstanding the Mamzer
http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/13704#.UqqTnvRDuSo

72 Percent Of Black Kids Raised By Single Parent, 25% Overall In U.S.
http://newsone.com/1195075/children-single-parents-u-s-american/

Helping Africa: From Poverty to Prosperity

There is national concern that Government aid from countries such as the United States to Africa is being dispersed amidst corruption, and likewise, that  social helps are not working to teach African people to care for themselves.  Hence, the help, according to complaints is small dealing only with feeding, and forms of medical, but do not teach self sufficiency

Social Programs in  the US although taxing have made a difference for it’s citizens. Conversely, programs such as Welfare to Work  have done wonders for  impoverished citizens of America. However, where can this mindset carry over to help in Africa?

The AfriKids Program works in a similar way to teach skills which will help people; especially, those who are homeless on the streets. It is the case, that some who entered the program get needed skills, jobs and move out of poverty as seen in the United States. In essence, all it takes one to pass on knowledge so that people can live.

To find out more. or to send a donation to AfriKids: Click Here