Boyce Watkins, a professor at Syracuse University and advocate for African-American issues, responded to Cooper's article online.Though he applauded Cooper's courage to voice her opinion , he agreed -- and disagreed -- with her."Going to these sites is discouraged in the black church because these places are seen as places where 'sin dwells.' But if women are compassionate, as the bible preaches they should be, then they need to be more open about the men they choose to date and where they might meet them." "I'm not against religion, or against the church, I'm against women limiting their choices and putting themselves in a box because they do what their church tells them to do," Cooper says. "Telling black women that they should spend their two hours on Sunday elsewhere and drive them away to go to the bar to find a date is not helpful to our communities." "Black women are the backbones of their community and without them a lot of charitable work would not get done, social justice on the ground would be diminished and outreach to poor people would be severed." Patty Davis, the long time churchgoer in Georgia, says all the arguments over what the church preaches miss the point. "The real question is: What are you coming to church for? would have you believe, is evolving into an elaborate charade of deception: Everybody is petrified of giving someone the “wrong idea.” Men are impolite to the point of viciousness to ensure that the women they just hooked up with understand they don’t want a relationship.Big Miller Grove Missionary Baptist Church, a predominately African-American Baptist church in Atlanta, is holding a seminar on the question of faith's role in marital status on August 20."Black women are interpreting the scriptures too literally.They want a man to which they are 'equally yoked' -- a man that goes to church five times a week and every Sunday just like they do," Cooper said in a recent interview."If they meet a black man that is not in church, they are automatically eliminated as a potential suitor.
She sits proudly in the pew every Sunday for service and is among the first to arrive for bible study each Wednesday.This is just limiting their dating pool." The traditional structure and dynamics of black churches, mostly led by black men, convey submissive attitudes to women, Cooper says, encouraging them to be patient -- instead of getting up and going after what they want.