This Ain’t no Ordinary Father’s Day
Oh what a volatile year. Not even sure how we made it here—to Father’s Day. This is the day where the man in the family is revered. We know that being a father is often not the easiest. Parenting, let alone fatherhood doesn’t come with a manual. It is trial and error and can test the mental fortitude of the best of them. Some fathers do it better than others.
I have seen some terrific fathers. These Black men are proud, creative, strong, honorable, innovative, humble, humorous, devoted, often quoted, and flat out smooth. We want to celebrate these attributes on this day, but I must say, this ain’t no ordinary Father’s Day!Tweet
For this post I’m going to break the mold and just weave some stories and tell some tales. There will be no statistics or news reports. Just some truths as I see them. I want to bring back the four men that I mentioned in my previous posts, who didn’t make it to Father’s Day 2020.
“The Difference between a ‘man’ and a ‘father’ is that the former shares his genes, but the latter gives his life.”
Kobe Killed in a Crash
This has been a nightmare year from the start. In January, Kobe Bryant died on a helicopter with one of his favorite daughters. He was passionate, accomplished, tenacious, and savvy. He had risen above contemporary stereotypes that allowed him to fly to a game on a private helicopter. I imagine that he calmed and consoled his daughter as their deaths became imminent. Kobe left his mark on the basketball world. He was upping his game to be a leader and supporter of the women’s basketball movement. The latter contribution will certainly rise up once the COVID-19 pandemic is stabilized.
Jason & Bishop Glenn, COVID-19 Brought Them to Their end
We also lost some good father’s this year to the two viruses that have been the pirates in 2020. First there was Jason Hargrove a modern day hero. He was a loving father and husband. He made sure his riders were safe, going above and beyond. He was proud to get up and go to work to deliver people safely to where they needed to be. He was full of life and full of love. Jason stood up for what was right. He was every bit a front line worker during this COVID-19 pandemic. He tried to tell folks they needed to wear masks to protect others from COVID-19. His video about this went viral. He was subsequently infected and died after being turned away from hospitalization a couple of times. Being a Black man contributed to this dismissal.
Had this been Tom Brady with a cough and a fever, would he have been sent home? The implicit bias that determines the worth, of a valuable man infects many. Now Jason is gone from this earth. His death has laid a heavy burden on his wife and kids.
“He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; like a lamb that is led to the slaughter, and like a sheep that before its shearers is silent, so he opened not his mouth.”Isaiah 53:7
Then Bishop Gerald Glenn who we spoke about before, loved and was devoted to his calling. He was a dynamic, charismatic pastor who was a pastor to other pastors. He led by example. This anointed man was faithful, compassionate, and spiritual. He was never in too big of a hurry to help someone in need. He had integrity and believed strongly in fairness and lifting people up instead of tearing them down. He said he would continue to preach unless he was in a jail somewhere or in the hospital.
Bishop Glenn wanted to give his people hope in the face of the pandemic. He did not want this virus to conquer his flock, however this treacherous virus was no angel but the devil come calling. The Bishop died of COVID-19. He died fighting his cause. His family took up the torch. Yes God will protect us, but they implored everyone to take this virus seriously. They encouraged people to do the things that will keep them alive and remaining hopeful.
George, the Sacrificial Lamb Succumbed to the Racism Virus
Then George Floyd the father, calling for his momma in his last breath. 8 minutes and 46 seconds of a man’s life that the policeman took for granted. He kneeled on this gentle giant’s neck until his breath was gone. It didn’t matter to this merciless man in blue, that George was a father to his own children and the young men in Houston that needed a strong man in their life. No, George to him was just another N—uisance. George may not have been perfect, but then who can cast the first stone. He was a lovable guy. He was a community advocate and an inspiration to his neighborhood and the young men that needed hope. BigFloyd4GOD one of his Texas handles, was a positive force for change. He moved to Minneapolis for a change. George encouraged others to seek the high road and never give up because God has our back.
WE honor George and the rest of these men, they all died in the midst of or leading a cause. Kobe was not attacked by the viruses that killed the other men. Or was he? George died from the racism virus. The other two men were victims of one of the most treacherous viruses yet known to man. All these men with their unique life circumstances are looking down on us and I am certain none of their deaths will be in vain. People are taking to the streets raising cane — demanding that policies change and justice be served!
Fond Memories and my Father
Covid-19 and the racism virus have caused so much anxiety and stress. It is enough to make you depressed. I think it is good for your mental health and soul to shift thinking about these things, at times. So, I thought about the past when, once upon a time……..
I remember growing up, that my dad was always there, even though sometimes we wished he would not have appeared. Like when we were at a party trying to pretend to fit in and our dad called for us to get home because he heard some shooting. Nobody was looting. It was just an illusion that he had to protect his children in that moment. He was always a great innovator, inventor, philosopher. Aristotle didn’t have a thing on him. And he could tie a bow and iron some clothes, feats I could never repeat.
This is my dad– so special. My dad, paving the way, dropping those dimes, and encouraging in his way. He had a way with words that could make a broke down car seem like a Jaguar. He had no mal-intent but at times was hell bent on making sure that we would be successful. Not often enough do I take the time to tell my dad how important he is and how much I appreciated the lessons I learned under his tutelage. We don’t take the time to tell the men in our lives how important they are as fathers. They are LOVED and needed.
Think about the fathers you know? Who are they? Have you looked into their souls?
What Words Capture the Essence of FATHERS
To me these words describe the collective fathers:
What words would you attach to these letters?
Celebrate Father’s Day 2020 Virtually
Father’s Day is just a day. We should applaud men more than once a year, but you know how that goes. Nevertheless, celebrate hard today because this year has really shown us that we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. Remember that COVID-19 is still lurking. Make sure to wash your hands, cover your mouth, wear a mask, and stay 6 feet apart. Plan a virtual get together using various media platforms. Drive-through parades with handmade signs is another way to enjoy the day. I plan to make a virtual visit to my father today. Also, remember to show appreciation throughout the year, especially during these harsh times.
I am thinking about the fathers I know and it makes me smile because I know that these brothers put in some work to be the best that they could be. They learned to cornrow, don a tutu, chisel out forests, cheerlead, driving instructor, coaches, teachers, tutors and all tasks needed to accomplish the goals. Shout out to the men I know– my brothers, friends, and former classmates!
Read some of my other posts where I talk about the 4 men.