Will Smith Blames Slavery for Why Most Black Parents Criticize His Parenting Style

Photo Credit: Walmart Stores
Photo Credit: Walmart Stores

By: Amanda Anderson-Niles

The Will Smith parenting style is a very controversial one. Will and his wife Jada Pinkett Smith have been married for over 15 years, but regardless of how long they managed to stay married the couple always finds themselves and their parenting styles as a target of criticism. To most critics, it just seems like Will and Jada treat their kids more like adults than children, and Jada and Will have defended their take on parenting on numerous occasions. However, when a joke in which Will suggested Jaden wants to be emancipated for his 15th birthday was taken a little too seriously, Will now again finds himself defending the way he runs his household with his wife. And according to Will, black people in particular find their family life so faulty because they have been conditioned to think a certain way as a result of slavery. Will tells Haute Living when asked if there are similarities between how he was raised and how he raises his own kids:

“There are definite similarities. I grew up in a family business so my father, my mother and all my brothers and sisters worked in the family business, so that’s really the only way I know how to parent. In real situations, you are going out in the real world and you are earning real money. The things you say and do in the world will affect the family for real. My style of parenting is very similar to that of my parents, minus the concept of ownership. I think that, specifically in African American households, the idea coming out of slavery, there’s a concept of your children being property and that was a major part that Jada and I released with our kids. We respect our children the way we would respect any other person. Things like cleaning up their room. You would never tell a full-grown adult to clean their room, so we don’t tell our kids to clean their rooms. Actually, we tell our kids ‘you don’t have a room, that’s our room and we are letting you borrow it.’ So the same way you would say to an adult if you let them use car, you say, ‘Yo man, clean my car! Don’t drive around all filthy like that!’ And it’s perfectly reasonable for you to want an adult to clean your car, so we feel it’s perfectly reasonable to ask our kids to clean the rooms that we are letting them use.”


  1. He’s right but watch most people run to drag him in the comment section anyway because he doesn’t think like they do.

  2. I honestly don’t think it’s my place to tell two other grown people how to raise their kids when I don’t even have any kids myself. Hell, I just got married. But I think people should at least let these kids become adults before they label Jada and Will as terrible parents. They are still young and we don’t know what kind of adults they will be just yet. Let them grow up first. LOL.

  3. He’s reaching. People aren’t trying to treat their kids like “their property” just because they give them rules and restrictions. That’s called parenting. And he was raised with rules and restrictions and he tuned out great. I honestly feel like Will is just feeling himself too much and has turned too Hollywood.

  4. That damn Scientology has this man talking crazy. That cult teaches people to treat their kids like little adults. He will say anything but the truth. And the truth is he’s into that Scientology crap.

  5. He makes a very good point, but I can’t completely agree. The only thing I will say is he has a right to raise his kids whichever way he wants to. The truth will come put when these kids are grown and old enough to move out the house. If they act a fool and end up on drugs, then we know they weren’t the best parents they wanted everyone to think they were.

  6. I wish Will and Jada would stop explaining themselves. Do what you want with your kids. The public will never accept it anyway because it’s too different from what they know.

  7. I honestly don’t think there’s ONE correct way to raise kids. I think different kids require different things. What may work for one family may not work for another. Let them live. People are too concerned with what they do with their own kids. It’s silly.

  8. The only thing I have a problem with is he is making it seem like black families are the only race that parent like that. What about Asians,Caucasians,Mexicans. I have had friends from other races who parents were very strict and were disciplined. I’m pretty sure it’s not just black families that disagree with him so don’t just call us out. I could care less how he raises his kids.

  9. He’s right. Slavery has affected both blacks and whites when it comes to parenting. People want to control their kids but that’s not exactly raising them. IJS.

  10. So he’s just going to call out black people huh like no other race thinks his whole family are weirdos. Oh ok.

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