My name is Deandre Jackson and I am a 25 year old African American male living in Harlem
New York. I have two children a son named Gabriel and a daughter named Christina alongside
with my wife whose name is Janet. Recently me and my wife have been going through some
problems because she thinks I am not being the ideal father to my children. She thinks that I
come home too late, don’t treat her the way she is supposed to be treated and don’t teach my
children things that are very valuable to them. Also, she is worried about me leaving her for a
white woman but the funny thing is that I have no interest in them but she is the love of my life.
To clear my mind I decided to go to the Studio Museum in Harlem which was not too far from
where I lived. As I walked into the museum I could see all the different pieces and sculptures
that filled up the walls and the wooden floors. Most of the paintings were filled with vibrant colors
and one thing that most of the pieces had in common was that they all had something to do with
the African American culture. There was one piece that caught my eye which was the Black
Men We Need You painting made by Barbara Jones-Hogu which was placed high up on one of
the walls and I wondered why they placed it so high. The painting consisted of bright colors
such as green, blue, and red and on the background of the painting it said “Black Men We Need
You” in bold letters. The painting also features a black men with his two children and there
seems to be a large face on the painting which looks as if it is a black woman. This painting
spoke to me the most because it was almost an exact representation of my life. The artist was
trying to explain how black men need to be good husbands in marriages with black women.
Also, that black men are important in the development of their children’s lives and they need to
be there every step of the way. There has always been a stereotype about how black men are
deadbeat dads and are unable to take care of their children but I didn’t want to fall into that
category as a father. This painting also taught me that black men need to stay away from white
women so they are able to preserve the race of black people. I’m already with a beautiful black
woman so I don’t think me being with a white woman will happen anytime soon. The painting
has impacted me in a large way. It has been a pleasure to speak to other men who share the
same culture as me. Now I will go home and give my family all the attention that they need. I will
take my kids wherever they want to go, I will fill them up with knowledge because at a young
age their minds are like sponges and I will just be there whenever they need me. This painting
will forever be stuck inside of my mind.