After The Protests Are Over
The Day Sanford Marched... Where is Sharpton Now?
Your View Determines Your Plan Of Action
The cameras and visitors have all but disappeared from the dilapidated and poor neighborhoods in Baltimore and Ferguson, but a major problem still remains. What do we do about the issues that constantly plague the Black community generation after generation?
I guess your response depends on how you view the situation.
Since the verdict came down in the Trayvon Martin murder trial, the issue of discrimination and imbalance in the legal justice system has been in the forefront of my mind. I have been gaining knowledge about this country's history and its systems, including the biases that exist within each and every one of them. I have been studying the history and reaction of Southern whites to the very existence of Black folk. I have spent hours thinking about what I can do to make a change in a young black man's life. I have been developing a program to help guide youth who look like me, to areas of greater success and I have been reaching out to established programs to volunteer and do what I can to help where I can.
Most importantly, I have been educating my black son about his history, his worth, and his potential. I ensure that he hears the truth about his ancestors and holds his head up high when thinking about how great his race is.
But that's just me.
If you are an optimist, this whole issue is probably very easy for you to deal with because you "know" that everything will work out fine. If you are a pessimist, its even easier to deal with because you "know" that this is just the way it is and nothing is ever going to change. If you are a dummy, you say "Why should they care about killing us when we kill each other?"
If you are a realist like myself, its one of the things that has kept you awake, many a night, because you have come to understand the state of emergency blacks are in and have been in for decades, and the overwhelming nature of its cause.
A Complex Problem Requires A Complex Solution
As the Mayor of Baltimore spoke of her own citizens as "thugs" and criminals, I sat with my mouth open shaking my head in disbelief. Did she not understand what was happening? Has she lost touch with the reality of the protesters in the her streets?
I am no dummy, so I know that the game of politics is calculated and planned. I know that as a public figure head, she had to bring calm to her city and appear that she was in control and on top of the situation. I can't help but think that she could have chosen a better way to voice her outrage over what was happening in her city.
When I viewed the video and pictures of little angry black boys throwing rocks and other items at brick buildings, my mind quickly flashed back to the pictures I had seen of hooded men burning crosses, lynching black bodies, and bombing buildings, killing black men women and children together. How I wish the black history I was taught only showed pictures of little white boys throwing items at buildings instead of posing near dead bodies.
The history and current situation of black Americans is unique. The history is sad, it is horrific, it has lasting effects which have caused damage to the psyche of its victims.
There is no one solution. But silence, selfishness, name-calling, self-blame, and ignorance will only add to the suffering.
Do something positive. Learn, educate, and make a change.