In the fight against injustice, everyone has a voice. Don’t let your background, financial status, or lack of degrees stop you from speaking up and out! Slavery is still allowed in prison according to the 13th amendment. I ask myself how did the generations that came before me allow this to happen? Did they get so wrapped up in being “free” and looked at prisoners as a nuisance and did not bother to fight that clause?
It’s extremely bothersome, considering how mass incarceration impacts black families in the present. I know they could not see this far in the future, but what about those that came after them?
I remind myself daily that, I don’t want my legacy to be that I knew things were wrong but bothered to do nothing to change them. I firmly believe that at the most basic level, people have the right to be treated with dignity and respect. It amazes me how some make excuses for injustice. I often wonder if this how the field negro vs the house negro thing plays out? It’s okay to be angry and pissed. Too often, there are some who like to “hush” the emotions of others. Which often leads to silencing their voice.
Recently, during my city’s MLK celebration, many citizens were reminded that we have a long way to go. Citizens faced heavy police presence on the south side of town meant to shut down any further celebration of the day.
Particularly, within the black community, we often look for others to leads us. I hope we truly break the “messiah” mentality. It’s going to take a concerted effort by all to combat what we are facing. The issues with appointing one person as a leader or voice of the community are that they can be easily targeted and taken down! Then, the progress stops. History has taught us this.
We must begin to look inward if we truly want to change. We must stick together and be fully committed to fighting injustice. Personally, I will be reactivating my membership with the NAACP. I didn’t renew it in the past because after attending some meetings and a sit-in in Tallahassee, I noticed something that upset me, and that was the “old guard” mentality.
However, recently, I have come to the conclusion that if we really want to change, part of that involves getting involved and changing some of these organizations for the better and assisting them with revving the power relevancy they once had, so that the generations that come after, will have some stable shoulders to stand on.
One thing that I have noticed, is that at one point our elders built colleges, grade, and trade schools, banks and started credit unions. When they won, everyone did! There wasn’t this I got mines, so get yours mentality! Hopefull,y we can get back to this…
Remember, you have a voice, don’t be afraid to use it!
Take Care, xoxo