Come on, People: On the Path from Victims to Victors
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Bill Cosby and Alvin F. Poussaint have a powerful message for families and communities as they lay out their visions for strengthening America, or for that matter the world. They address the crises of people who are stuck because of feelings of low self-esteem, abandonment, anger, fearfulness, sadness, and feelings of being used, undefended and unprotected. These feelings often impede their ability to move forward. The authors aim to help empower people make the daunting transition from victims to victors. Come On, People! is always engaging, and loaded with heart-piercing stories of the problems facing many communities.
common sense book Bill hits the nail on the head with this one. I hope some of the upcomming generation takes the time to read this. That is if they can....more info
Even On A Plane, I Couldn't Mr. Cosby's ideals are my own. I embrace his message and even took an "at risk" kid to Cosby's Houston Call Out. Bought Come On People immediately and put it in my traveling bag--my way of saving a treat for a time when I could really dig in. My mistake. I read the first chapter, skimmed the next one and put the book away. Ranting has its place, but in Come On People I couldn't get past the criticism and anger in order to comtemplate the solutions presented--assuming there were solutions inside. I loathe traveling without something to read, but I couldn't bring myself to reopen Come On People....more info
Very Good Resource Material, Highly Recommended A book of this nature is long overdue. Fatherlessness has become an epidemic in the black community. Too many mothers have been left alone to raise their children. This pattern seems to be repeated in generation after generation. It is high time we break the cycle and try something new for the sake of our children. We don't want anymore of our children in the prisons - there is hope - let's change our values. Mary McLeod-Bethune was born shortly after slavery but because of the values passed down to her by her parents who were newly freed slaves she went on to establish a school which still bears her name today: Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach, Florida.
The authors of Come On People, Bill Cosby and Alvin F. Poussaint, are on a mission to enlighten and encourage families to turn the negatives in their lives to positive. It has been done before and it can still be done with the right mindset. Many African-Americans have walked that road before - George Washington Carver, just think of this ex-slave's accomplishment in the face of tremendous odds. Every now and then we need to be reminded and Bill Cosby and Alvin Poussaint have done that very well in this book.
This book should be required reading for young adults - very good resource material. Parents, especially single mothers run out and get this book. If you can't afford to buy it then borrow it from the library. Christmas is almost here; this would be a very thoughtful gift to someone.
An honest dialogue that needed to happen The basis of this book is common sense and how it applies to groups of people who have lost their way in certain very important areas of their lives: parenting, family, social and financial responsibility. Dr.s' Cosby and Poussiant intelligent and thought provoking banter is refreshing. Personally, I and others who are not part of the Black community have wanted the Black American community to rise up, and live up to the incredible potential that awaits them as a culture and a community. But certain segments of the society have lost their way and have become professional victims of their own way of life. There are still a silent majority in the Black community who have been responsible but have felt powerless to help the people who have lost their way. This book addresses these issues in sobering detail but with touches of humor to help lighten the load of this very deep and serious issue....more info
What America Needs To Hear Bill Cosby had a TV show the "Cosby Show". He was a responsible father raising a family with values. He made us laugh and brought example into our homes.
Now Mr Cosby is making us think. It takes courage to speak out as he is for the benefit of our families. This is what we need to hear in churches and the media.
I highly recommend another writing "Why Singles are not Married & the Married are Single". This is another candid reading that discloses the negative but has a positive influence to save the family....more info
Alot of browbeating, preaching to the choir... The problem with these types of books is that the people that would most benefit from the ideals therein will never pick it up and read it without any coaxing. That's not to say that this isn't a good book and that readers shouldn't spread the word because it is and they should.
But let's be honest: the book is a summary of classical and common sense ideas
1. The importance of a classical nuclear family structure
2. Fathers spending more time (and dollars) on their children
3. Abstaining from too much of the idiot box
4. Staying involved in school via PTC's
5. Monitoring what we feed our mind body and spirit
This is all superficial fluff. We all know what the issues are and what needs to be done (or maybe we don't). Mr. Cosby's national calls to order in town hall meetings are more affective of change than reading this book because you get to hear powerful testamonials from people that are living the stories spoken in the book and how they turned it around.
In all, this is "Enough Part II". If you've read that book...you've read this one....more info
how do we get others to read this? As a member of the "choir" - Bill Cosby was only reaffirming what those of us who have worked in public education and have parented very actively already know. Now, how do we get thoe who NEED to learn how to be acgtive, positive members of society to read his book and make some changes?...more info
Everyone black and white shoud read this book. This was an outstanding book. I am doing a paper on Bill Cosby for a Leadership program at work on leaders. This book had points of view that I had not though of. Very entertaining as well as educational. ...more info
Bill cosby's book "Come On People" Bill's book has a lot of good information, but He lacks the real world experience of the "hood". Becoming "Victors" isn't as easy and as simple as he believes. To Pull yourself "up by your own boot straps" requires that you own a pair of boots to begin with. Sometimes a little help from the Government or the community is necessary.
Over all, it's a good read....more info
Come on People I thought the book, Come on People, was excellent. Every parent and anyone else who wants to live in a better environment and better themselves should read this book.It is written to the point, no guessing is needed to understand what was being said....more info
Eye-opening for all races About a month ago, I got an e-mail from a lady who works at Bill Cosby's team asking if I would be interested in receiving, reading, and reviewing a new book co-written by The Cos. Being a big fan of Dr. Theodore Huxtable (I mean, my parents even videotaped and saved every episode of the Cosby show), I readily agreed.
A few days later, I received Come on People: On the Path from Victims to Victors, by Bill Cosby and Alvin F. Poussaint. I have just finished reading it, and I found it very poignant and powerful.
The main focus of the book is on the American black family -- its problems, its struggles, and its possible solutions. For young black males especially, there is an overwhelming feeling of victimhood that just continues to build and build with every passing day. Too many of these kids accept this with a sense of fatalism and do absolutely nothing to try to dig themselves out of the hole that they find themselves in. Instead of strengthening family bonds, they reach out to false surrogate families such as gangs and drug dealers, and they get themselves involved in lives that have no worth or meaning.
The authors bemoan the erosion of the family values that used to exist with a father and a mother bringing up the children, lovingly disciplining them, and modeling right and wrong. Heartbreaking statistics reveal that so many young black men are growing up in families where there is no father figure present to demonstrate how a man should act. And without that role model, the cycle perpetuates itself. These young black men might get a young black girl pregnant, and then their instinct is to run from the issue, rather than staying to support the baby. The statistics are also overwhelmingly high for these kids to drop out of school early and to be in jail for some portion of their life.
Cosby and Poussaint have traveled the country, discussing these issues in community call-outs. In these call-outs, various people have shared their own personal stories of adversity, despair, and triumph. Many of these stories are contained within the chapters of Come on People, and they are inspiring to behold.
Come on People should be read by everyone, regardless of age, race, or class status. The only way any of this is ever going to change is if we decide to change things for ourselves....more info
Could the Cosby Show become reality? Dr. Alvin Poussaint and Dr. Bill Cosby created media magic with the Cosby Show, which was often accused of painting too idealistic a picture of the modern African-American family. Now, in this remarkable work, Cosby and Poussaint team up again to show families how they can acheive personal success by giving up the victim mentality and applying some time-tested principles that allow us to move towards personal victories.
The book targets the mindset behind many of the critical issues in the African-American community: homicide, the rising dropout rate, divorce and single motherhood. It doesn't beat around the bush, but deals head on with the idea that we need more positivity in our communties, more nurture for our children and more respect for our own mental and physical health.
By facing the issues directly, Cosby and Poussaint open to door to healing for the community with practical recommendations that any family can easily implement. The book leaves you feeling energized about the prospects for the future. Each family can make a difference - Come on, People!...more info
Lessons For All Races As a white native of the Appalachian coalfields, an area plagued with the same problems that are destroying inner-city black families, I hear in Cosby's words advice that many of my friends and family members also need to hear. Cosby speaks about the need for positive male role models, the abandonment of the community, the price of violence and personal foundations (either good or bad) built during childhood. With staggering statistics and clear, rational arguments, Cosby presents an undeniable thesis that points a finger directly at irresponsible behavior as the root of most of our problems.
Cosby's greatest frustration with black America comes from embracing the "victim" label and the continuation of self-defeating (and often stereotypical) behavior. As examples, he sites the use of the n-word, self loathing parents who spew hatred for their own race in front of their children, and support for criminals.
The biggest credit paid to Cosby should be the high road he takes in this book, which comes directly on the heels of a three year stretch where he has routinely been mocked and attacked for his beliefs. One would expect others like Bill O'Reilly or Michael Moore in a similar situation to spend the first few chapters railing against their critics and answering any counter points against their arguments. But Cosby seems more interested in getting out his message than protecting his image, so he's all business in this work, even it provides more fodder for his critics to use against him.
Excellent Resource Material! I watched Meet The Press last Sunday morning. It was one of the best television programs that I saw in a long while. I did appreciate the the candid remarks by Bill Cosby and Dr. Alvin Poussaint. I shared my comments with others and immediately bought the book....more info
Cosby and Poussaint are right on!! Whether you like it or not these two men sat down and produced a guide book that will save more african american lives then another bloated government program. The advice they dispense is some of the most prudent advice that any one could ever receive. The truth hurts sometimes and the best way to change things is to use tough love. Where they fell short for me is that they in some ways do blame the victims without understanding the larger physchological impact that poverty produces....more info
HELP WANTED: STOP THE KILLING From Camden to Compton there is an epidemic that society is trying to quietly sweep under the rug. TV legend, Dr. Bill Cosby (Dr. Cosby earned a professional doctorate in education as well as numerous other honorary doctorates and degrees) and Dr. Alvin Poussaint penned an enlightening book about making yourself a better person. This book does not target anyone but it specifically discusses the Black community. I was recently driving through downtown Newark and saw a huge billboard that said: HELP WANTED, STOP THE KILLING. If all adults, and teenagers read this book this entire world would be a much better place and murder would not be the number one cause of death for young black men. Dr. Bill is honest and candid and doesn't care if he's going to take some flack from the African-American community because he is not concerned about being popular. I can't recommend this book enough; should be required reading in all senior high schools. I wish a book like this was published for the gay community; but that is probably decades away from happening. ...more info
Come on People A very apt title. Obviously written for the African American population, any ethnicity can benefit from the wisdom of these two gentlemens writing. This book explores all aspects of life in the minority world and it gives very helpful suggestions on how to take control. It is well written and in the Cosby style it is light hearted while being very serious. I highly recommend this book for EVERYONE....more info
Come On Cosby! I purchased this book believing that with Dr. Cosby and Dr. Poussaint as co-authors, they would definately have SOMETHING to say. Unfortunately for me, they had NOTHING to say. The book is a contstant reminder of the problems that exist, however, they pose no solutions. Everyone knows of the teen pregnancy problem, the black on black crime problem, the single parent problem, the education problems etc........With all of the Phd's writing this book, LET'S get some solid solutions!
A Call To Action And Self-Accountability... This book is a truthful (although) painful account of the "Black community"...The one thing I disagree with is Mr Cosby advising the women at Spellman to "take up the slack"...We should not be mules and take on the responsibilities that Black Men have abandoned...
Black Women Deserve Better...more info
Another Example of color-blindness At a time when racism is being revealed in the media Bill and Alvin join the neo-cons and blast the victims of institutionalized racism. They should have done their homework because they obviously are re-discovering the Mediterranean. In the 1960s people were blaming the "culture of poverty" and Daniel Patrick Moyniham was blaming the black family for the poverty endured by African Americans. Fortunately, William Ryan debunked the blame the victim ideologues with his classic "Blaming the Victim" which show how we blame the individual for what our economic, political and social institutions are creating. Blame the victim and ignore the role of capitalism and the ruling class. ...more info
Come On People Well writen, good advice on what is needed for families to succeed in handling problems facing most of us....more info
Much needed solutions talk... I can appreciate the authors attempt to try and save at risk black youths from jail and destructive behavior. Responsible parenting is a must and continued involvement with troubled youth ideally would reduce deliquency. But lets face it, many middle class blacks have trouble raising their own kids, without having to worry about someone elses.
I was also concerned with his overally optimistic view of the foster care system. The authors obviously endorse it, but there is no discussion about abuses (sexual, physical) in these homes at the hands of the foster parent. I know this book is supposed to be about solutions, but I did have that concern.
They are absolutely right that AA ought to do more and stop blaming others. We have issues that only we can fix, and if we don't the "immigrant" community will walk through the doors opened by our struggle. I liked the solutions involving the church, like having onsite mental health counseling to help destigmatized getting mental treatment, but the church should have been focusd on a little more. In order to get the word out to the masses, the black church will have to play a bigger role. Overall this is a great resource that deserves to be read more than once....more info
Missing Something... The concerns regarding the state of many poor blacks are 100% legitimate, but let's not be so biased and dilusional to think for one minute that they're exclusive to the black race. And let's not be silly enough to think the 'victim mentality' that poor blacks are accused of harboring is simply a figment of the negro imagination. The question is 'where did mentality come from'? And are we silly enough to claim that all these issues that poor blacks face are self-inflicted? More importantly, are we super-silly enough to blame it Sharpton and Jackson, when the majority of those we're referring to probably don't even know anything about the two?
The perception is that poor people are usualy black or Hispanic, while poor whites are shunned from society - but that is something created on purpose. And the fact is violence and crime, teen pregnancy, unwed mothers, and every other social ills you can think of is prevelent in poverty stricken areas REGARDLESS of who occupy such areas. It's just that we tend to disregard poor whites as 'white trash' while ignoring and failing to compare the problems they face with their poor black counterparts.
I'm still trying to understand why is it such a taboo to say that poverty is the root problem? If we want to pretend as if the 'system' and the way in which our government, who operates just about every entity in America, does not play a role in keeping people poor, then how do we expect to make a change if we are too afraid to acknowledge the problem? And for those of you who refuse to see things in more ways than one, then why do we bother participating in local, state, and federal elections? If the system in which we live in is not partly to blame, then are we to blame the millions of Americans who have faced and will continue to face foreclosure due to lack of jobs? How about the rise of homelessness in this country?
Perhaps most of you don't understand that the foundation (jobs, education, service) of every community can either make a people or break them. In other words, a community that has little jobs, and opportunities will create socially-inept, unproductive citizens that care little for themselves. Is that so hard for many of you to understand? If the answer is yes, then I urge all of you who are sincerely interested in fighting to make a difference to expand your minds and dare do some research outside of 'poor blacks' to see that POOR people of all racial and ethnic backgrounds suffer from the very same things that poor blacks suffer from.
Moreover, the federal education system has failed. Black kids are being taught they came from the 'dark' continent (Africa) as slaves, and then were freed by the very same people who enslaved them. This type of teaching, believe it or not, creates a systematic mentality of inferiority in their minds, which trascends into nothingness.
Regardless, black people have come a long way. The black Middle Class has been pretty consistent, and all over college campuses are black students advancing in society. We are teachers, librarians, small business owenrs, big business owners, real estate investors, entertainers, authors, and just about everything we can think of. And whenever I hear the lie that we as group of people who have been harmed haven't advanced, I think of the brave young men who formed the Black Panther Party and how they were targeted and mostly killed of simply because they created an African American centered agenda to advance 'our people'.
But that 'we all get what we deserve' mentality should be re-examined, or if you ever find yourself lying on the floor, fighting for your breath, don't call a doctor, because YOU'RE ON YOUR OWN.
What's wrong with brotherhood? Didn't your ancestors fight on a collective basis? If I'm drowning because I can't swim, why can't I call on my brother to lend a helping hand? Why can't we be our brothe's keepers? Why can't we work together to clean up our neighborhoods? Oh, yeah - I forget. That would be socialism.
Anyway, I hope Cosby's book ends up in the hands of those people we're referring to here, instead of those of us who have already survived. But then again, what's the use of telling a fool who knows that he's a fool that he's a fool?
Who Is The Audience? Mr. Cosby and Dr. Poussaint are surely doing great work in Black communities. This is not, however, a great book. It is a compendium of the advice Mr. Cosby offers, mostly to parents, punctuated with examples of community input (written in script over shaded pages, making it hard on older eyes).
The work best answers the question: What is Mr. Cosby saying to Black communities? It's unlikely (in this reader's judgment) that his primary audience will be the primary readers of this book. That audience will be those who admire his efforts and, largely, don't need to be persuaded to follow his advice.
After the first couple of chapters I found myself reading the headers and the first sentence of each paragraph. The purchase price is essentially a contribution to a very worthy cause. ...more info
He's preaching. Who's listening? Bill Cosby's latest novel makes everyone uncomfortable about the realities of what slavery and institutional racism have done to America.
Cosby's take is that there comes a time when black people have to take some responsibility for making their lives and communities better. It is no wonder that he has been ostracized by the media minorities who make their livelihoods on blaming others for black America's problems. The book gets a little preachy and simplistic about solutions toward the end of the book. The beginning is better. It is worth a read....more info
fresh perspective from inside the community I enjoyed the fresh, new perspective, from an African American about the true condition of the black community. Too bad it is not shared by the popular leaders from these community - rather opting to play the ever played-out "blame "the man" game."...more info
Who has the power? I've always been on Bill Cosby's side about making education cool again, dressing the part to get the job, knowing that there is a time and place to speak in slang, and that Black folks need to STOP hurting other Black folks (i.e. black on black crime). But in this book, he touched on a topic that was more personal to me, ADHD, specifically because two of my nephews had it. This book made me more interested in the disorder, and I ended up writing an article on ADHD and how it affects the Black community. I like it when books spark creativity in me. I can't say I disagree with anything said in the book. However, after awhile, I started feeling like I was reading the same thing. Cosby emphasized a point, but then he repeated it again in another chapter (prime example was the issue of Black vernacular). There was a lady on a BET show about top losers and winners in the African American community, and she said that Cosby needs to stop criticizing and start doing something. Honestly, I feel like Cosby was brave to go against the grain and speak out about the things we need to improve and to STOP tapping our fingers waiting to see what Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton are doing. The purpose of the book was basically to say that every last one of us has the power to change, although we may not choose to use it. The book was a little too long to prove that point and could've been split in half. However, it was a good read....more info
Good start I was excited about this book after hearing a radio review of it. It's a fine and noble work, but the tone is a little too casual/folksy to be truly convincing. Some of the folksy personal experience coupled with more scholarly research writing (even if set off in margins or text boxes) would have made this a home run. As it is, it may be a double. This is definitely worth reading, but I doubt it will bring about the changes it calls for and that are much needed. ...more info
The Elders Strike Back Bravo to Cosby and Poussaint for publishing this much needed work. Unlike the intellectuals and scholars who deride these men for being old fuddy duddies or being part of an `afristocracy,' the authors have no problem speaking the truth no matter how unpleasant. And the truth is indeed unpleasant. Today, while there are marches over the symbolic offense of rope hanging from trees and door knobs, 94% of all blacks murdered are killed by other blacks. This is unbelievably tragic. But as their sub-title states, Cosby and Poussaint offer a litany of self-help strategies for communities and individuals to rise from the paralyzing state of victimhood to victory.
This self-help guide is sorely needed. Many parts of the black community are like urban versions of William Golding's `Lord of the Flies', with waves of children born into neighborhoods without the norms and values of civilization. Don't believe me? Read the `call outs' in the book, which are testimonials from men and women the authors met during their tour of black communities. There's no point in lamenting over how or why this happened. The authors do quip that while blacks were thinking about the white man, blacks stopped thinking about the black man; however, they are primarily concerned with offering real tangible advice to those who desperately need tools to command control over their lives.
Their voice throughout the book is both fatherly (you can almost hear Cosby shouting in you ear `Come on People!') and authoritative of academically and professionally learned men. They also speak as loving elders within the African-American community, reminding their audience of the heroic legacy they've inherited from their forefathers.
They cover subjects such as prenatal care, child rearing, mental and physical wellness, education, finances, confronting crime, etc. Interestingly much of what they say is today considered counter-cultural. They assert that black children must speak `Standard English', boys are different from girls, two parent families with a married mother and father are ideal, abstinence is better than a condom, etc. Thank goodness these guys don't care about whatever Viacom says is fashionable.
There is a ting of sadness that these men, at this point in their lives, needed a write a book like this. It didn't need to be this way but life must be faced not as it ought to be but as it is, with the desire to change life for the better. As such, Cosby and Poussaint have written an impassioned, highly informative guide offering individuals something they may never have thought possible to attain: hope....more info
To 40 Acres Now Actually you sound like you came from a "Single parent home" and your Father didnt raise you. Its a "Man Job" to teach a man how to be a man but Black men perfer running the streets chasing women rather than being involved in their children's lives.
I dont understand why men like yourself feel that all of the work is on Black women and Black men are "totally left out of the picture" or are not held "Accountable" for their "Absentee behaviors". The fact that most Black males havent had any 'Male Guidance" or "Role models" is exactly why you see so many Brothers incarcerated and disrespecting Black women. What do you expect from men who havent seen any "models of a complete family"?
Rather than chastise Black women for handling all the ills of the Black community why not ask Black men to get involved with raising their children instead of chasing women in the streets to lift their sagging "low self esteems"???? Wouldnt this make more sense?
I dont see educated Black women accepting Blue collared Black men who have behavioral problems do you? These Sisters are either remaining alone or some are dating out. Irregardless, relationships between Black women and men are not lasting.
The big difference that I see this time is that "Black women are williing to move on and date out" something that Black women have never considered prior. There are alot of Sisters telling ther daughters not to accept certain behaviors from Black males and telling them to open thier options. Even older Black women are dating out so the next 30 years will be interesting. Since Black males are not getting their education and Black women are going in record numbers so the "division will widen even more" .
I think that you would do better to ask Black men to act "Responsible and "Man up" rather than place the blame on Black females. Shame on you, your title says Bible Teacher???? Are you for Black men making OOW babies , not taking care of them and and repeating their patterns with another woman? I see this often in the Black community.
These are some of the reasons why I don't date nor would I marry a Black man. These high stats are too much to battle and the high risks with little to gain. ...more info
Essential reading for black and white Mr. Cosby and Mr. Poussaint provide a simple and essential guide for black people in the 21st Century. A lack of stability in the black family can be traced to drugs, the media and a breakdown in a sense of community. Mr. Cosby brings up his own Christian upbringing as a stepping stone along with simple practical advice to save people. He adds documented evidence that shows that violence between black people and a gangsta mentality, perpetuated by the media, has crept in. His is a voice of much needed hope and clarity. Practical advice that black people, working together, can follow. I salute these gentlemen and pray that the black family regains its footing and disowns a dysfunctional image of itself, promoted by a media that too often focuses on the bad in human beings....more info
Cosby and Toussaint have it right I read this just after I read "Man Up," and unlike the author of that book, and Cosby never panders or condescends to other black people. He speaks the truth, and he doesn't talk down to people.
I wish more people took him to heart about facing and changing the self-destructive choices poor black AND white people make, like dads who father children and then bail, young women who can't even support themselves having kids (which is the royal road to "forever" poverty) and a cult of "authenticity" that black people *themselves* use in an attempt
to stop any other black person from learning mainstream American English, the language of professionals in America - the language of law, medicine and big business. Maybe they feel better about themselves if they keep other people down with them. But Standard English is something even WHITE kids get wrong. They have to LEARN proper grammar and spelling too!
People may not want to hear it, but Cosby is absolutely right. And he treats his targeted black readers like adults who DO know in their hearts that it's up to THEM to better their lives, and that they CAN do it. They HAVE to, because no one else will do it for them.
And it's empowering NOT to have to sit and blame others for the consequences of their choices, but instead, to get out there and do something to make your life better.
If you think the deck may be stacked against you, so what? It's stacked against ANYONE who doesn't get an education and a marketable skill these days. A better day than today will not arrive.
Come on People Extremely well written!! Information is realistic and applicable. Hope it will be applied.
Don't Shoot The Messenger(s) Like the old adage goes - "the truth hurts". And whenever someone is presented with the truth, he/she has two options: 1) either accept the truth, learn, take action and change on it; or 2) ignore the truth, stay in denial, do nothing, blame others and live with your present and future circumstances. Unfortunately, black America has opted for number 2 for the past 25 years and what we're witnessing now is the devastation that black families and black communities is suffering as a result of ignoring hard truths about ourselves for far too long. And this is exactly the point that Bill Cosby and Alvin Poussaint is addressing in their compelling new book "Come On, People".
First off, let's make it clear that this book is in no way an attack on the poor. But it is an attack on poor habits, poor thinking, poor decisions, poor parenting, poor self-control, poor self-image, poor grades, poor ambition and other self-destructive behaviors that are running rampant within the black community, especially poor black communities. This book is essentially an analysis of the self-imposed problems facing African-Americans today (notwithstanding the evils of racism and discrimination that continue to exist) and what we (African-Americans) can do for ourselves to make our own lives, families, and communities better, safer and stronger. It is a common-sense approach to eradicating the cancers that are killing us from within (violence, crime, drug use, out-of-wedlock births, fatherless-ness, etc.).
The "messengers", Cosby and Poussaint start off by presenting some alarming statistics about black men in America. You'll have to read the entire book to get the full gist of them, but as a black male myself, here's one example that I personally find the most vile among them all: "94% of all black people who are murdered are murdered by other black people". Any intelligent, reasonable African-American has to speak up and ask "why are we killing ourselves and why aren't black "leaders" saying anything about it?" [I'm sorry, but racism doesn't make you kill your "homie" over some sneakers, Ipod, leather jacket, his girlie or some other dumb reason.]
The authors go on to identify the root cause of some of these statistics and bring to light the real truth, unapologetically and without placing all responsibility on white people. And while not intended to be the panacea to all of our problems, they offer some practical, positive steps or suggestions that everyone can take to move "from victims to victors", regardless of household income, education or family background. These include strengthening our communities, teaching/nurturing our children, ending domestic violence, being financially responsible, entertaining ourselves with positive books, music, movies and media, caring for our health (before we get sick) and other important things. Each chapter also has real-life examples and success stories dubbed "Call Outs" and "Life Lessons" from various black entrepreneurs, doctors, entertainers, common people and historical figures to serve as inspiration for succeeding against the odds.
Interestingly (and tactfully so) Cosby makes no mention of his biggest critic and nemesis - you know, that fast-talking intellectual joker who wrote that book attacking Cosby a few years ago for "airing dirty laundry" about blacks in front of white America - in this book. I'm glad Cosby took the high road instead of responding to personal attacks.
I strongly recommend this important book for blacks, whites and anyone who is tired of covering up the truth and living in denial. Clearly, this book will offend the "poverty pimps" and "victim vipers" who want to wallow in self-pity and victimhood perpetually, but the truth must be told and we can't afford to not act on it any longer. Come On People, please read this book now!
Come On People First of all, I'm not black. but it's a fantistic book. Everything written and said in the book are things that I think everyone has always thought but did not dare to say openly for fear of being called a racist. The great part is, it not only applies to black families it applies to all colors ~ whether you are black, white, green, yellow. Responsibility, morals, family standards, if you are alive they apply to you.
Reading Club selection This book was a new genre for our staff reading club. Generated much discussion among all of us, old and young alike. ...more info
Great book,poorly marketed Although I agree with the other reviewers on the overall quality, ingenuity and originality of this book, it is obvious that we have missed an important detail.
Mr Cosby has the future of the "Black Young Men of America" as well as the "Black Single Mothers of America" in mind all during the research and writing of this little jewel of sociology, so:
How are they, the main targets and supposedly potential beneficiaries of this book, going to come across it? and, most importantly, How are they going to manage to buy it?
How many ghetto young men have access to the net? Or credit cards to buy on Amazon?
Mr Cosby is certainly in no need of the royalties to pay the bills. Is he donating thousand of copies to be delivered to his target audience?
Maybe so but, if he is not, someone else please do so.
If read, it will open some eyes and, maybe, help some of these troubled youths.
Just an OK book This book covers too many issues in a broad sense. It would have been better to just take one topic and focus on writing (and offering tangible solutions)...more info
Surprising for Cosby This book was not what I expected. Cosby reaches to a sector of black people who have been made infantile in their reasoning. This book is not for the exercised mind....more info
Come On People now,smile on your brother! COME ON PEOPLE now,smile on your brother,everybody get together,try to love one another right now. If you know The Youngbloods' 1969 hit song GET TOGETHER,you know that catchy lyric. In recent years,comedian-actor Bill Cosby has been adressing groups of college students regarding inappropriate treatment and inadequate life of many of the African-American race. Here,he has collaborated with longtime friend Dr.Alvin Poussaint,who also served as a creative consultant for Cosby's Emmy-winning NBC sitcom THE COSBY SHOW. In a recent appearance on MEET THE PRESS,the pair dominantly discuss use of the so-called "N-word". Cosby,for one,has always detested the mention of it. This is a frequent practice amongst the prejudiced and from black to black,in a friendly way. TCS has set excellent examples of family life during its 1984-92 run and in fact,the sitcom was the first to feature a large,wealthy African-American family. Also,many situations seen on the sitcom were inspired by Cosby's real-life family and non-show business lifestyle. However,THE JEFFERSONS were close to,although not exactly the same as TCS. I assume,like TCS did,this book is meant to promote education. I'm sure,if not yet,Reverends Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton will own this book. In fact,Jackson is an acquaintance of Cosby's. I will read this book sooner or later,at least I plan to. I bet after five weeks on the market,many of Cosby's fanbase have bought this book. ...more info
very informative I enjoyed this book it had a lot of things that some people need to sit down and think about. it has helped me improve in some areas as a parent and is highly capable of improving other African Americans in different areas that are important to our growing youth....more info
Unemotional Vignettes; Dry and Poor Writing on Potentially Great Ideas Ugh! Okay: I bought the book because I like Cosby and he was promoting the book on Oprah. I'm barely staying with the writing, however. The vignettes are unemotional and do not pull me in as a reader; the writing is dry and dictatorial. What an incredible waste of what are some potentially great ideas! I'm disappointed. Cosby would have been much better off to collaborate with someone like Iyanla Vanzant. Although the authors thank the contributors for their powerful and passionate parts in the creation of this book, I'm not feelin' it. In fact, I would recommend any books by Iyanla Vanzant in place of this! Check out her meditation books, such as the "Faith in the Valley" set, "Acts of Faith", her prayer book, and "Yesterday I Cried". I have found these to be especially engaging and empowering....more info
Just Getting Started but looks great I just bought this book off of the bargain table at a local book store. I am only a little ways into it but so far I am impressed. My concern, though, is that those most likely to benefit from this book will never read it or even find out about it.
Based on what little I have read, I would recommend this book to those who have become tired of the race hucksters (Sharpton & Co.) and would like to read some good ideas about what needs to be done to improve the lot of minorities in the inner cities.
One minor criticism: I haven't quite read a third of the book and Cosby has mentioned "institutional racism" twice. Rubbish! Institutional racism does not exist. Cosby should leave such nonsense to the Left....more info
Well Done!!! Five stars! This is an insightful, well written group of essays that everyone who has any interest in the next American generation should read. It is easy to read and easy for all to relate to. I highly recommend this book and the book "Understanding: Train of Thought" to everyone. There are so many great quotes in these books, all very inspirational....more info
Come on, read for change I love Bill Cosby because he's not afraid to attack what's wrong, but with the truth. He's not trying to be politically correct. This book isn't a sit down and have a cup of coffee book. It's a book that speaks to the heart about the state of our society and generation. This book is about change for every race and generation. If you are a person whose not afraid of truth and want to be an agent of change, then this book is for you....more info
Reminds me of Demico Boothe's "WHY ARE SO MANY BLACK MEN IN PRISON?"..... This book is a wonderful and truthful read. Much obliged!!!! Bill Cosby has not changed the position he has always held as an African-American man; to help uplift the Black race from an educational standpoint. There are few Blacks alive that have helped more Blacks in more different ways than Bill Cosby. This book should be required reading for all African-American youth between the ages of 15 and 21. ...more info
Rhetoric from the left It's interesting how the outdated philosophies of Marx and Stalin keep popping up when someone comes up with a truly rational and wise solution for helping people move into a better lifestyle as Cosby has done.
Class is merely a state of values. Cosby is promoting values of freedom, hard work, determination, with respect for self and for others. To say he is bourgeois, as some reviewers have implied, is utter nonsense. Cosby is desperately trying to help black people and all people. To say Cosby is in an alienated state of existence is just absurd. He is extremely wise and acutely aware of society's problems. He has very promising solutions, though not perfect, to the problems facing all communities as well as the black community.
When those with Cosby's approach come up with worthy solutions to improve society, the old left not only attacks the philosophy and the effort of these sincere people, but also attacks them personally. Roy Wilson has said we should all pray for Cosby's alienated state of existence. I think all of us should pray not for Cosby, who is doing just fine, but for those on the left who clearly are in a state of alienation and ignorance.
If we all take Cosby's approach seriously, the Man (tyranny) can't keep us down.... But the left (merely another form of the Man) definitely will !!! We all are striving for a good life without the Man. We certainly don't need to replace him with another Man : the left. Let freedom ring for all people. Listen to Cosby and know the truth is out there.
Come On People.....WAKE UP! Get with it! For the sake of YOUR child! Bill Cosby writes another candid book that is beneficial & worthy for ALL! I saw him on OPRAH and heard them talking about this book. People, you had better wake up, get with the program, and start paying attention to YOUR child/children! Bill hits the nail right on the head! Bill is so right on when he tells you that you should be preparing your children for adulthood....for GOOD JOBS....for being parents themselves one day. Using proper English, good study habits, good manners, good work ethic, spending TIME WITH YOUR KIDS, KNOW WHAT THEY ARE DOING, KNOWING WHO THEIR FRIENDS ARE, YOU, yes YOU being the parent! Your kids live in YOUR HOUSE and YOU make the rules. And parents, be involved in your childrens lives. Ask them questions, play games with them....do things with them....give them some of your time and attention...pray for them & WITH them..this is CARING about YOUR own child/children! Also, if your kids have MYSPACE of FACEBOOK or the like, know the password and browse around on their site. It IS your right. Check out their text messages now and then. It IS your right. If they live in your home...it IS your right. You've got to know what your kids are doing and who they are spending time with. This is part of loving and protecting them. Thank you Bill Cosby for writing this book. ...more info
Something to think about I love the fact that Bill Cosby had the nerve to say the things that he said. Most people don't because they are "people pleasers" and have to be part of the crowd. God Bless him. He really loves us and wants us to perform on a level of excellence. Clarence Thomas is worthless and cares less about other people and cares a lot about himself. What a difference....more info
Honesty is the Best Policy How refreshing to see someone talk of EMPOWERMENT instead of VICTIMHOOD!? I have always believed in one of the central messages in this book and am so pleased someone is brave enough to put it on paper: Set high expectations for our children because that is the only way they'll realize their own power! Set the bar low and you'll reap what you sow! ...more info
An American Hero Bill Cosby is an American hero for taking the stands that he does in a world awash in stupidity and mediocrity. Books like his or "Sarah Conrad of Eagle Creek" are needed today. God bless his efforts....more info
Motivational This book presents eye-popping stats that will move your emotions. The title should read "Come On People...Let's Get It Right" You'll become enlightened and begin your walk to victory. I admire Cosby's courage to address this trying issue. ...more info
Cultural readjustment is on-target The doctors make it read simply, but they have a lot of science, history and psychology behind these book passages.
There's more here than meets the eye. The adolescent and young adult chanting and singing vile hip hop lyrics, accessorizing their coffee table with books of porn "stars" and gangsta rappers are cultural tourists and they are promoting the tear-down of others. This is not to be taken lightly. Glamorizing, romanticizing, play-acting a highly destructive inhuman role, none of us should accept these behaviors; it is becoming part of the problem and it is irresponsible. As an example, even if I wanted to do drugs I wouldn't because it is illegal and somewhere along the delivery system line people could go to jail, lives and families could be ruined. The gangsta theme is not benign; "porn chic" is insane; prison is a hellhole. Set these sentiments to some jaunty music and suddenly it is hip, edgy cool culture??? Who is kidding who? It has been said that for young adults - even affluent young adults - porn stars and gangsta rappers have replaced fashion models and movie stars... how completely misled these young people are! Rage against the machine??? They are the machine. Maybe not the architects of the machine, but in Cosby's words "Come on people!" If you have a good position in life you have a responsibility to shape the system, not playact at impotent rage. At the very least, if you are in the 40% tax bracket (that includes rappers) you are part of the system. This is a bizarre situation from every angle.
Gangsta rap came from the incarceration of large numbers of African Americans in the '90s... the stone face, the misogyny, the hatred of authority and loyalty to the crew. Easy to understand and even sympathize with how these themes of rebellion and rage at the system/machine got started. However, it is not so easy to understand how this is relevant to the teenager or young adult not in this unfortunate situation.
Irregardless of race (I'm not black) Cosby's book is right on. So many children and young adults are vicims of their parent's ignorance and limited thinking. All of us have some poisenous pedagogy in our past; unfortunately, plenty of poisenous pedagogy will come into our lives and do damage, often serious psychological damage, but only a fool will run towards it and embrace it.
Fact is, statistics can identify problems and trends, but solutions come down almost entirely to individual effort. Externals help, but the love of a parent and a family for a child is powerful stuff that needs to be directed. Cosby's book does a lot of the analysis for people, based on what we now know about childhood and parenting. Child rearing is serious serious business and to do a decent job of it we all need to be the last in the line of any of the poisenous pedagogy that we endured. Cosby and the doc's book gently tells us so. Bravo!
Come on Bill!! Easy read. Facts are very interesting. Too bad the people who actually read this book, are not necessarily the people who should read this book....more info
It's a Good Wake Up Call Come on people is a good wake up call for the African American community. It is time we as a people stop blaming everyone else and go back to helping each other. The authors' make many valid points about the everyday black experience in America. The heroism that is shown to "thugs" and "pimps" must stop if our community is to succeed. The book also lays a burden on the media to stop the criminalization of the black man. Interestly enough, there was an entire section devoted to health care and nutrition. The book does drag in places where you read a lot of statistics. It also includes a lot of "call outs" where ordinary people give their view of what is wrong or right with the black community. I purchased the book after seeing Bill Cosby on The Oprah Winfrey Show. It is not written to entertain, but to inform people on ways to make changes in their lives. Sadly, the main ones who should be reading this book won't....more info