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10 Feb, 2010 00:23

A good black man is hard to find

Thirty-four-year-old Kandy Phillips knows what she wants in a relationship, but she’s still missing a key ingredient – a good man.

I don’t have diseases,” Phillips said. “I don’t have an attitude problem, I don’t like to fight.”

What Phillips does have is her own house and a good job.

Shavon Conyers, 28, is in the same boat – with a full time job as a mental health counselor. In her spare time, she is working on her master’s degree.

“A lot of guys – they’re just not on my level,” Conyers said. “We don’t share the same interests, or they’re weird."

Both Conyers and Phillips say they’re open-minded. However , the men they’re looking for have one important trait: They have to be black.

“My dad is a big strong dark skinned black man,” Phillips said. “I’ve felt embarrassed that I can’t bring a guy home that looks like him.”

Conyers said she would consider dating outside her race, but her family, particularly her grandmother would “hit the floor” if she brought a man home who wasn't black.

Phillips and Conyers aren’t unique. In America, more than 44 percent of black women have never been married. That’s compared to 32 percent of Hispanic women and 23 percent of white women, according to the U.S. Census Bureau.

Black men also make up a high percentage of the prison population, and are much more willing to date outside their race.

Many estimate that about 80 percent of black-white mixed race couples are made up of a black man and a white woman. Until some of these things change, the search for love, particularly for black women, will remain a difficult one.