In "Promises Kept" we write that Black children who feel positively about being Black tend to perform better academically. Indeed Black children whose moms and dads teach them messages about racial pride and individual self worth when they discuss discrimination with them do best academically and psychologically.
Now there's additional reason to racially socialize Black children -- and all of us! -- to possess a positive self concept. New research shows that Black males who harbor strong but unconscious anti-Black attitudes age more quickly when they experience discrimination than do Black males who feel good about being Black.
So not only does racism limits access to high-quality schools, jobs that pay a living wage, decent housing and so on, the stress associated with being Black weathers many of us psychologically.
What can we do to protect our children? Armor them with a positive narrative about African and African-American history and culture, as well as inspiring family stories and a positive personal identity.