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Is anyone here a member?

Anyone rejected?

Is the organization's reputation of being elitist warrented?
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When I was growing up [in the mid-70's] my mother explicitly rejected an invitation for my sister and I to join. She knew some of the people involved and did not want to associate because of their elitist conduct.

My sister was pissed because she would not be able to "come out" in their cotillion. While I didn't care one way or the other, in 1978, I was one of 3 non-J&J cotillion escorts.
I was in Jack and Jill from the age of four until I graduated from high school when you naturally age out. I loved it, still have friends who now live around the country from it. Met people at college and in law school and in my ski club who were also in it.

I think is was positive for me, and the kids in it. My kids will be in it, when I have them and I have assisted others in joining it.

I am also a Delta, pledged in college at the same chapter my mother pledged at the same college.

Jack and Jill is a family organization for Black families.

As to the negative comments from contributors to this thread, all I can say is, quoting Jill Scott "Everything ain't for everybody".
Jack and Jill has little to do with elitism within African America. As I see it, it is about trying to maintain cultural integrity within largely white suburban communities. The families come from the ranks of the professional and college educated. To the degree that that is elitist, it is. But the purpsose is to instill pride and establish links among African American children where they might not always exist.

I grew up in a white suburb of Boston in the highly racist 1970's. Jack and Jill was a tool to keep me connected with other black kids. It was not the only vehicle for that purpose, and I certainly had contact with black kids throughout the spectrum of African America, but it was a great way to connect with other black kids - not only in my town - but from around the country.
I grew up in a depressed all-black area, and I was never exposed to anything like Jack & Jill. I doubt very seriously that I would ever raise children in an all-white area. However, if I ever did, I think Jack and Jill would be a great opportunity for them. I think anything that instills self-awareness in black children who are otherwise at risk of being disconnected is something I would support. To the extent that they may be somewhat "elitist," who cares? Why would that constitute a deal-breaker?
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
Jack and Jill has little to do with elitism within African America. As I see it, it is about trying to maintain cultural integrity within largely white suburban communities. The families come from the ranks of the professional and college educated. To the degree that that is elitist, it is. But the purpsose is to instill pride and establish links among African American children where they might not always exist.


I didn't intend to imply anything overly nasty about Jack & Jill.

But, coming from the black working class like I do (and I'm also first generation college educated), dealing with 2nd and 3rd generation middle class black folk can be stressful - you are sometimes put off by a certain elitist strain - or at least tendency to take far more for granted than I do...
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
Jack and Jill has little to do with elitism within African America. As I see it, it is about trying to maintain cultural integrity within largely white suburban communities. The families come from the ranks of the professional and college educated. To the degree that that is elitist, it is. But the purpsose is to instill pride and establish links among African American children where they might not always exist.


I didn't intend to imply anything overly nasty about Jack & Jill.

But, coming from the black working class like I do (and I'm also first generation college educated), dealing with 2nd and 3rd generation middle class black folk can be stressful - you are sometimes put off by a certain elitist strain - or at least tendency to take far more for granted than I do...
appl bow My wife has some older family friends here in Houston that fit all the stereotypes. They insists on the use of their titles in informal conversations, they love dropping names, pimping their Greek organizations, etc. To date, I find it all quite superficial. Unfortunately, my wife has already let me know that if we have kids, she wants them in these circles. I will just have to train my kids to be subversives. Wink
Honestly I have never head of Jack and Jill of America until I saw this thread. I am going to look it up on the internet. The comments have definitely been interesting to read.

I agree with the points that everybody has made. I grew up in the same way HonestBrother did working class family in a African American neighborhood and also first generation college educated.

Reminds me of a conversation I had with a female I was working with years ago. She went to a different high school then I did in Cincinnati. She said she loved the high school she gradauted from and was so glad that she did not go to a particular high school that she mentioned. She said everybody that went there were all hood rats she did not realize that she was talking about the high school that I graduated from! I quickly told her that I am not a hood rat and I am very educated!

I really dislike people who think that they are better than you because of certain circumstances. I am not saying that Jack and Jill of America is like that. I just think we as people should really be aware about trying not to put labels on each other.
maybe apart of really caring about black people and the black community and living and spending your money withing those communities , just imagine if these so called elites used that capital to enhance our communities instead of trying to live with the Joneses, seems to me its all about the decisions people make. If you purposely decide to live in an area where people dont look like you, how do you tell your people you are down with them?
quote:
Originally posted by ZAKAR:

If you purposely decide to live in an area where people dont look like you, how do you tell your people you are down with them?


You make the racist and perhaps self hateful presumption that all of "your people" live in the hood. Brother, they don't. You infer that to be 'truly black' you've got to be a certain type of person and live in a certain place. That seems to be a sort of 'ethnic elitism' that is as divisive as any other kind.
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
quote:
Originally posted by ZAKAR:

If you purposely decide to live in an area where people dont look like you, how do you tell your people you are down with them?


You make the racist and perhaps self hateful presumption that all of "your people" live in the hood. Brother, they don't. You infer that to be 'truly black' you've got to be a certain type of person and live in a certain place. That seems to be a sort of 'ethnic elitism' that is as divisive as any other kind.


yeah
I love black people to death, Who said every black person is from the hood. Who said every black community is a Hood? there are some very nice viable black communities all over this country filled with black working,middle and upperclass blacks who purposely decided to live and spend their capital with their people
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:
quote:
Originally posted by MBM:
quote:
Originally posted by ZAKAR:

If you purposely decide to live in an area where people dont look like you, how do you tell your people you are down with them?


You make the racist and perhaps self hateful presumption that all of "your people" live in the hood. Brother, they don't. You infer that to be 'truly black' you've got to be a certain type of person and live in a certain place. That seems to be a sort of 'ethnic elitism' that is as divisive as any other kind.


yeah

yeah
Come on with that setup shyt, My point is if you live within a community buy property in that community you contribute to the viability of that community. If you live outside that community your taxes go somewhere else Ie education, power.Our people as of now dont provide all the services we as a people need, but they do suppy alot. But I never said spend all, but i was implying spending every dime possible with your own people would not only be benificial to you as an individual but it contributes to the viability of the community
quote:
Originally posted by ZAKAR:
why would you live in an all white area, anyway, if you just put a bunch of yuppie kids together how does that help the community?


I have not discounted J&J as an activity for my daughter, in that as some have indicated, it is a way to connect with other Black kids.

quote:
why would you live in an all white area, anyway


In Tucson, Arizona, one has little choice. Blacks make up about 3% of the population. And, while Hispanics make up about 30%, living with them is no different than living with white folk; only the median income is significantly lower.

quote:
why not expose your children to all types of black kids , advantaged and disadvantaged.


We do whenever possible, but I would be happy exposing my daughter to ANY group of Black kids, regardless of socio-economic status.

quote:
if you just put a bunch of yuppie kids together how does that help the community


In the same way, this community helps the community. It gives us an opportunity to "not be alone" and to "see others, like us, that are succeeding.
so it is a choice people intentially make.No one forced them to move into all white areas. People act as if most people live in white communities because of jobs thats a lie. Most people live in white communities because they think they can get a better value for their houses. Often they will have to drive by a black community to get to these outer suburbs. Most black people dont live in Utah!!
quote:
Originally posted by ZAKAR:
so it is a choice people intentially make.No one forced them to move into all white areas.

Of course it is. I never said anything implying the contrary.

quote:
People act as if most people live in white communities because of jobs thats a lie. Most people live in white communities because they think they can get a better value for their houses.

No, people consistantly buy as much home as they think they can afford. I don't think this is a very smart practice, but it's what people do. I don't believe that Black folks drive passed Black communities out of avoidence (if they do at all). There just trying to get as much "bang for their buck", just like everone else.

quote:
Most black people dont live in Utah!!

Relevence?

Again, people choose to live where there is an appreciable difference between their ability to generate revenue (employment) and the cost of living, assuming that they have any choices at all.
quote:
Originally posted by HonestBrother:
quote:
Originally posted by ricardomath:
quote:
Originally posted by TruEssence:

Honestly I have never head of Jack and Jill of America until I saw this thread.


At least I'm not the only one here who hasn't got a clue what this thread is all about.

Could somebody please explain what Jack and Jill of America is?


TruEssence and ricardomath, go to

http://www.jack-and-jill.org/


thanks
MTC
I'm glad to see this discussed here by those who have participated in J&J. I am from the school of thought that when segregation was no longer part of our society we should have stayed in OUR communities and improved them. But, there was the Black-flight to the white suburbans by those who had "made it." Thus, I can see the importance of J&J.

Those of us who continue to live in the Black communities are not ask to join J&J. From my experience with J&J, those who are members are children of lawyers, local celebrities, ex-football players, politicans, those who hold PHDs and anyone they deem worthy and living in the suburbans. And those same Black folks who live in a predominately white suburbs, come into the Black community on Saturdays to get their hair done and on Sundays to go church.

I'm not against anything that would enhance a child's self-awareness. That being said, I do get ruffled feathers when these same J&J children evolve into adults who feel they are the elitist or the talented-tenth of the African Americans because of thier affiliations. I have members in my own family who belong to J&J and my experience with them is exclusion not inclusion. Thus creating a "I'm better than you because...." or you are field negro and I'm house negro. fro
quote:
Originally posted by Diamond:
MTC
I'm glad to see this discussed here by those who have participated in J&J. I am from the school of thought that when segregation was no longer part of our society we should have stayed in OUR communities and improved them. But, there was the Black-flight to the white suburbans by those who had "made it." Thus, I can see the importance of J&J.

Those of us who continue to live in the Black communities are not ask to join J&J. From my experience with J&J, those who are members are children of lawyers, local celebrities, ex-football players, politicans, those who hold PHDs and anyone they deem worthy and living in the suburbans. And those same Black folks who live in a predominately white suburbs, come into the Black community on Saturdays to get their hair done and on Sundays to go church.

I'm not against anything that would enhance a child's self-awareness. That being said, I do get ruffled feathers when these same J&J children evolve into adults who feel they are the elitist or the talented-tenth of the African Americans because of thier affiliations. I have members in my own family who belong to J&J and my experience with them is exclusion not inclusion. Thus creating a "I'm better than you because...." or you are field negro and I'm house negro. fro



This is very similar to my experience with J&J and the black middle class generally. Which is not to question someone's racial authenticity. But black folks can be bigger goddamned snobs than whites... and over some pretty petty stuff (fraternities, sororities, clubs, etc.)
I am troubled to hear members of this site decry the vaulue of a Black organization like Jack and Jill which is positive. bang

MBM I am glad that I am not the only former J&J member on this site brave enough to say it, and I am glad you too saw the benefits of being in that organization.

Vox, thanks for your openmindedness.

As for J&J, this organization allowed me to see a very different view of Black people as opposed to tv stero-types from shows like "Good Times" or "Sanford and Son". I always wondered why there were no tv shows about famlies like mine on tv in the 70's and why did every Black show have to be a sitcom? Then we got the The Cosby Show. Much better, but still a sitcom. Why?

I find it odd that people think that being Black means being working class. Thurgood Marshall should not have gone to the Supreme Court or even Howard's Law School if that was the case. We would not have had the Black psychologist who did the experiments for Brown vs. Board of Education. Senator Obama should not be in office right now, he too is a law school graduate, Harvard. We should have no Black doctors, engineers [electrical, civil or architectural], MBA, or anyone at all that goes beyond college right. Shonda Rhimes would not have had the oportunity to write and produce Grey's Anatomy, where we get to see not one but three Black surgeons, not just doctors but surgeons one of whom is the Chief of Surgery, on Sunday, and they are not the tokens, the Asian doctor is. What would we get then, only college drop-out professional athelets? Would we as a people be stuck in lower management forever or should we all just say hey being a check out clerk at any store is good enough for my brain, since I want to be considered Black by my people. True, it is difficult to purchase a house on the salary but it is an honest job and no one would be able to say I was not some kind of elite Black cause I went to graduate school. What example does that set for our children?

If we keep decrying education and organizations that make kids compete with thier minds and not thier bodies like it is a bad thing we will end up not having a Black middle and upper class at all. Without a Black middle and upper class we will not have advocates for our community's needs in the halls of power, does anybody hear Bush v. Gore, remember we just needed one Senator and Carol Mosely Braun, another attorney, was no longer in Office, and Obama was not there yet.... hummmm what would have happened, .......be they congress, courtrooms, planning boards or hospitals. We will have to depend on the good graces of others. By the way, how far have the good graces of others gotten us as a people since the Civil War? Just Asking. I am the first attorney in my family, but out of my J&J class of 1984 there are dozens from across the country, directly from my local chapter we have 5 attorneys and 3 doctors. I think that is a good thing.

Jack and Jill is a support group for Black families who want more for thier kids than a spot on the corner. The live in Cities, Suburbs and Rural areas. Why is living in the hood what makes you Black? By the way, who made that decision? Just asking.
they stuff you saying is Stero typical itself. Saying that all people who live in a working class community is on a street corner. The problem with and elitist group like Jack & Jill(why the name?) It doesnt accept the average black person. Most black people are not millionairs, or even make over 50,0000. The overwhelming amount of black people are poor and working class, why not have something thats inclusive istead of some country club shyt
quote:
Originally posted by kresge:
quote:
Originally posted by ZAKAR:
why would you live in an all white area, anyway

Perhaps thats where your career takes you. I have worked at colleges in upstate New York, central Pennsylvania, and south central Michigan. That is the nature of those communities.


Our where your parents career takes you, as an Army brat (term for army kids) there are no all black neighborhoods on military installations where we all live and hang out.

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