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Squires: Deion Sanders and Denzel Washington promote strong families while the 'Afristocracy' tries to 'liberate' black people out of existence

Ivan Romano / Stringer | Getty Images

Malcolm X once stated that black athletes and entertainers were “puppets” and “clowns” unqualified to lead the black community. But the man who played Malcolm X on the big screen and an NFL Hall of Fame player turned coach are far more important in today’s culture than two of MSNBC’s prominent Harvard grads.

Elie Mystal, a lawyer and political analyst, recently appeared on MSNBC and argued that the 13th Amendment should be used to protect “abortion rights.” Mystal was engaging in dialogue with Joy Reid, host of "The ReidOut." Reid gleefully interjected “the anti-slavery one” when Mystal raised his far-fetched legal theory. Mystal and Reid floated the idea that the prohibitions on involuntary servitude apply as much to the womb as to the cotton fields. To them, pro-life laws “force” a woman to “labor” for free against her will.

This is a sad state of affairs. The “Afristocracy,” composed of black progressive politicians, pundits, journalists, intellectuals, and entertainers, behave as if depopulation is the civil rights issue of our time.

To them, pregnancy is oppression, abortion is freedom, and the nuclear family is obsolete. The people who claim to fight for racial justice seem to be on a mission to “liberate” black people out of existence.

Fortunately, all hope is not lost. There are two men within the black community who have the track record of excellence, reservoirs of cultural capital, and courage to promote a very different message. They work in different fields, but both understand the importance of men and women working together to build strong families.

Deion Sanders – aka “Coach Prime” – recently sat down for an interview with Rich Eisen, his former colleague at the NFL Network. Eisen asked Deion whether his experience as a recruiter has given him insight to the traits that make players successful.

Sanders confirmed that he had a template for quarterbacks, which by itself isn’t controversial. Some teams like signal-callers who are a certain height, and others want a player who can scramble when necessary.

But Coach Prime included something that most teams and coaches would never say publicly. He said he wants his quarterbacks to come from two-parent households, because they need to be “leaders of men” and make good decisions, both on and off the field. He reiterated similar traits for his offensive linemen.

The comments Sanders made about the importance of family structure and strong fathers for quarterbacks and the men who protect them were in contrast to what he says he looks for in his defensive linemen. There, Sanders said he wanted the type of aggression, tenacity, and desperation he finds common among young men who are raised by single mothers.

We are all shaped by our families and life circumstances. A man like Deion Sanders, who has spent his entire life playing sports and coaching athletes, notices patterns and is bold enough to express his findings in public.

He understands that young men who come from intact two-parent homes tend to be more financially stable than those raised by single parents. He also knows that boys raised, coached, and disciplined by strong fathers will likely have an easier time interacting with male authority figures.

Even Jemele Hill, former ESPN host and contributor, once came to the same conclusion in her defense of Ron English, a college football coach who said he preferred recruits who had fathers in their lives. Hill wrote this in 2010:

It's not gender discrimination to say that boys often fare better when their lives are influenced by positive male role models because it's true. The National Fatherhood Initiative has a host of statistics that support what English said – which was just a realistic portrayal of the impact of broken homes. And mentoring young black men is one of the reasons Tony Dungy said he retired from the NFL.

Fast-forward 12 years, and Hill can be found playing the same role of family formation disruptor as Reid and Mystal. She joined a chorus of liberal commentators who criticized Tony Dungy for partnering with Governor Ron DeSantis on a fatherhood initiative in Florida.

The family has been politicized, and the newest “white supremacists” are people who argue that children do best in stable homes being raised by their married biological parents.

Another man who is unafraid to make that point publicly is Denzel Washington. The actor, who has played everyone from a crooked cop to Malcolm X, consistently champions the benefits of family. What makes his advocacy so much more impactful is that it often comes in response to questions about systemic barriers to progress for black people.

One reporter asked him about incarceration rates and making headway in the criminal justice system. Washington began a two-minute master class on the power of family by stating, “I think it’s more important to make headway in our own house. By the time the system comes into play, the damage is done.” He went on to talk about a 16-year-old convicted of killing an 11-year-old gang member in Chicago named “Yummy.”

Then Washington asked a rhetorical question about whether “the system” is to blame for this type of disorder and answered it with a question that is verboten in progressive circles: “Where was his father?”

Those types of questions aren’t asked often enough in a culture that thinks mothers are necessary for raising successful children, while fathers are optional.

Washington can’t be caricatured by the left as a far-right anti-feminist. Unlike a small, but vocal, contingent of the manosphere, he is pro-marriage and speaks highly of his wife, Pauletta. He understands that men and women have different roles that are both critically important for producing well-adjusted, successful children.

This doesn’t mean two-parent families don’t have struggles or that children never disappoint their parents. Nothing in life exempts anyone – regardless of color, creed, or class – from the difficulties of life. That said, everything in this world works best when operated according to its creator’s design. The family is no different.

No community can survive when its leadership class is hell-bent on self-destruction. Everyone in America should have at least one person in their lives who is as committed to them as the “Afristocracy” is to promoting abortion. The most “pro-black” people in America talk nonstop about their ancestors while cosigning the destruction of their descendants. Their policies and priorities end in death. We have had enough of that to last a lifetime. What the black community needs now are men of character and conviction willing to speak life into a decaying culture.

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