Thoughts, Musings and Reflections

This Is How Brotherhood Is Done! Chin Up!

Late last year a group of Black women, now affectionately known as “The Squad,” took social media by storm as we witnessed a beautiful display of sisterhood in a KFC in North Philly. The women in KFC rallied around their co-worker that was accused of giving her telephone number to a guest in the restaurant. We have since learned the person that accused the young woman of giving her telephone number to his boyfriend was playing a practical joke the women were not aware of. What mattered to them is that they stood with and supported their coworker.

It was a moment that I will never forget, and it was a great way to end the year on a high note watching this true display of sisterhood.

Now, just a few weeks into the new year, the world got to witness a beautiful display of brotherhood among UCLA Men’s Basketball players, Moses Brown and Jaylen Hands. In a game against Oregon, Brown made a pass that resulted in a lost possession. With just a few minutes left on the clock, it is understandable that Brown felt discouraged and like he had disappointed his teammates. He slowly walked to the other end of the court with his head down, looking defeated. With no hesitation, his teammate Jaylen Hands comes over to him and places his hand underneath Brown’s chin and tilts his head up and appears to say, “Chin up.” The exchange only lasted seconds, but its impact was felt around the world.

When I saw the video on my social media feed, I watched it over and over again. It was such a small gesture, but at that moment, it meant so much to me. It was bigger than a basketball game. It was a moment that I got to see two Black men show love, support, and brotherhood towards each other. We often see Black men portrayed in the media in a negative light and finally, the world was able to catch a glimpse of true brotherhood.

I was also reminded to tell my Black brothers, “Chin up!”

There will be times this world beats you up, Brother, but chin up.
The world is going to tell you that you can’t do it, Brother, but chin up.
There are going to be times that you want to throw in the towel, Brother, but chin up.
There are going to be days that you wonder if your life matters, Brother, but chin up.
They are going to overlook you because you are Black, Brother but chin up.
They are going to tell you that your dreams are impossible, Brother, but chin up.
There will be times that you mess up, Brother, but chin up.
There will be nights that you cry, Brother, but chin up.
This world is going to make you feel less than, Brother, but chin up.
They will portray you as the angry Black man, Brother, but chin up.
You may feel like you have the weight of the world on your shoulders, Brother, but chin up.

I know it may be difficult, Brother, but chin up.

Do not let this world defeat you. You are more powerful than you can ever imagine!

Stand with your shoulders back, and your head held high.

And if you see your brother defeated, do like Jaylen Hands and take a moment to lift his head and tell him, “Chin up!”  You got this!


(UCLA went on to defeat Oregon 87-84 in overtime. Well done.) 

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