By NEMS Daily Journal
On Jan. 27, Tupelo radio personality Harold Turrentine hosted “Real Men Need a Daddy Too,” a forum with the goal of bringing men from the community together to discuss grievances and support one another. A second event for men is planned at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 17 at St. Christian Life Center, and an event for women, “The Pain of the Girl in a Woman,” will be held there on Feb. 24 at 6:30 p.m. The Daily Journal’s Chris Kieffer spoke with Turrentine, also known as Harold T., about his goals and hopes from these forums.
Q: What do you hope that the “Real Men Need a Daddy Too” forums ultimately accomplish?
A: My hope and expectation is that this will unify and bring us together as a people – especially in the black community – to decrease the violence in our black community, to begin to bring unity to the division in our community and to reduce youth pregnancy and the abortion rate. I hope it strengthens the level of education by reducing our dropout rate and increasing our graduation rate in the black community. I hope to see the middle class become strengthened and maintain its position in our community. That is what I’m hoping to accomplish, to help brothers and sisters to find better ways to bring resolve to our differences and to heal the right way.
Q:Much of the time at the first forum was spent in providing advice for youth who attended. Will this continue to be the major focus of the group in the future?
A:My focus is to bring balance and to bridge the gap between the older generation and the younger generation. My concern and what I’ve seen is that we’ve been too imbalanced. We’ve become extreme in trying to save the youth that we’ve forgotten about the wisdom of the elder. The name of this movement is Real Men Need a Daddy, teaching young men to become grown strong men. We need to also focus and give respect to the elder generation and help them understand they are not forgotten, are much needed and very important, and we need their wisdom in order to survive.
Q: How will the goals for “The Pain of the Girl in a Woman” forum differ from those for “Real Men Need a Daddy Too?”
A: It is basically similar. Our goal is to help the woman begin to detox from the pain that is harboring on the inside of her. After she is able to empty those things out, we want to impart into her a better way where healing begins to take place. Then we want to assist in helping them to apply what has been imparted. We really want to just help them get to a place that they understand they are virtuous, wonderful and strong women and we appreciate them for stepping up in the community when we, the brothers, have become weakened.
My vision is to help the woman heal from her past and from the pains of her past and her present to also secure the strength of her future, regardless of her race, creed or culture.