DYING SENTIMENT OR THRIVING HATRED: HOW MUCH OF MY ETHNICITY REALLY PLAYS A ROLE IN MY SUCCESS

“Sins of the past don’t have to be the future.”


The above photo is of a woman by the name of Vivian Malone. Vivian Malone was the first African American student to register for classes at the University of Alabama as an undergraduate student. The university was racially segregated, and up to this point no had been successful in entering the school. Even the governor at the time, George Wallace, stood at the door, blocking her entry temporarily before she was allowed access inside. Now, this topic is not about Vivian Malone, this topic is in reference to how much has changed since that time period. That was back in 1963 when she was denied entry, and my mother was only 3 years old herself. Since then, a lot more students have been admitted to Alabama, and no one thinks twice about Black children attending. But we still have conflicts in America today, as exemplified in Virginia a few weeks ago.

So my question is, how much does my ethnicity even in today’s society contribute to my success. Because I see so many men and women that look like myself that are successful, but then you see what has been going on in the country today. There are marches for White Supremacy in America, yet there are counter protest on the other side. And the counter protest are bigger than the supremacy groups. So yes, racism does exist, but on what scale. I have experienced it in life and still do. But what role does it and will it play in future success? A lot of the sentiment, I am not concerned with at this point in America. Because if you don’t like me by this time, then you never will. My only obligation is working to succeed how I want to succeed. I’m not in this world to convince everyone to love me, that’s not practical.

Yet, you have to deal with these types of people. I was reading somewhere that only 10% of the American population are supporters of these Neo-Nazi groups. Now, looking at this from a percentage basis we say, “10% is not a lot of people. But the American population is close to 320 million people. With 10% of these people following hate groups, 30 million people are a lot of people. But see, I am not trying to win those individuals over. I know they have and never will like me. My goal is I don’t want to have to come into contact with them. Yet when you see the Virginia march with tiki torches, you say to yourself, some of these guys were professors and even worked in the medical field. It creeps me out that some of these people could be my doctors. Black men already have and adverse feeling when looking at doctors.

Yet, in the end, I still look at my life with hope. Though in the back of my mind, the thought never leaves. When I come across someone and have what I perceive to be a racial experience, and I say to myself, “Did they because; nah, maybe not.” Nonetheless, I am hopeful; for my future and the country. We like to look in the past and say that people were so awful. But I think there were just as many good people today as in the past. It’s just that we all excepted life as what it was then. And the more we pushed against the grain, the more we look back and say, “You know, this wasn’t ok at that time.” For me, I look at photos of separate water fountains that said, “White Only and Colored Only.” It seems weird to look at, but for older people in my family that was life at one point in time. I feel life is changing, it’s just in real time we don’t see it. We never see life while in the paradigm of living it; humanity never will. Only when you look back over time we become convinced of the changes.


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A LOSING GROUP, OR SOMETHING LIKE IT: WHAT HAVE THE WHITE POPULATION REALLY LOST?

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“Seems more about control than identity.”


White Nationalist, Neo-Nazi, KKK, Alt-Right, skinheads; whatever you want to call them. There have been this idea that the White population is losing out here in America. Do I personally believe the hype when I look at the social, economic, political, and educational gaps, no. But I am a man who looks at things in life from a very practical stance. So in order for me to argue against the point of what a White man has lost, let’s look at the perspective of the man upset. This is where there is this uncomfortable feeling because I know it’s ridiculous. The White man’s unfair history in America, but nonetheless, I am taking a firm observation of what could be seen as lost. So, here goes nothing.

The United States gained its Independence from Great Britain in 1776, and the Constitution was drafted up in 1788. During this entire time, the men who sat around the table making the decisions for the future direction of the country were all White males. The Declaration and the Constitution were supposed to be affirmation that this land belonged to the American Whites, well those in a much higher position, and everyone else would be taking the lead of them. United States Declaration of Independence.jpgSo with the ending of slavery in 1865, which was a result of Abraham Lincoln signing the Emancipation Proclamation, there was now a new shift in America. Now, these men and women who were once property, were now in a position to work, vote, and attain education. A move that a lot of White men and women deemed a setback to their own progress.

You might ask, how so? Well, even the poorest of White men and women still had the upper hand over Black people during that time in America. This was not done to make them feel this was their country, it was done to keep a tightly knit system together. Those White Image result for jim crowmen and women making decisions didn’t care about the poorest of White people just as much as they didn’t care about Black people. Yet, in keeping with that tightly knit system, Jim Crow came out of slavery ending. Now what’s interesting, is that outside of the South, a lot of people never really knew the lengths to which Jim Crow had a certain fear instilled in a group of people. But nonetheless, it allowed even the poorest and uneducated White men and women a position over their Black counterparts.

Jim Crow held on for nearly 100 years until Black people felt pushed to a point of nothing to lose. The Civil Rights Movement had started earlier, but the height of the movement during the 1950’s and 1960’s saw a threat once again to that White establishment of control. Related imageNow don’t get me wrong, there were quite a few White men and women who fought with the movement and some even died themselves. Yet there was still a loud voice coming from the White community regarding ending Jim Crow. Jim Crow eventually ended, yet the fight did not and has not stopped. Which leads us until today. Now there are these conversations again from White men and women on what has been lost.

Now, that I have done a brief overview of American history. Here is what has alleged to be lost. Jobs are being taken from Whites. Wrong, corporations have removed these jobs and taken them overseas to save pennies, by other White men and women in power. Education is being high-jacked from White men and women. Wrong, as a matter of fact the Black community are constantly pushing ways to get more of our children to go to school each year. Foreigners are being accepted into top Ivy League schools, but not pushing out Whites. More so being accepted by predominantly White institutions by White people. Well, what about voices not being heard. Well, yet again not true. When Trump won, there was a large population of White conservatives who voted not just him, but a whole system of White right leaning men.

And that’s what brings me to the real aspect of what could be lost. See, former president Barack H. Obama lead this nation for 8 years. People say he caused this mass hysteria, but not true. See, the relationship Image result for barack obamabetween Black and White in America has been one of a dog owner and dog. We love our dogs because they obey us. We give them a treat and they roll over and perform tricks. That’s until dogs start to demand the same treatment as the owner. Now the owner remembers a time when you had to roll over and fetch treats. And that feeling is now gone and being lost. Because White people still lead the pack in wealth, education, politics, and the list goes on. But what is a feeling of going away is control, and to add to it, competition.

And in the end, that is the fear that is slowly being exposed. See, America created this superiority mind frame in a group of people. And superiority is not only a supreme view of self, but ultimate control over someone or groups of people. And when the command is not followed, there must be punishment. Yet the underlying issue with the word superior, is the control factor. People don’t aim at trying to control dogs because we are more superior than the dog. A dog can’t build a nuke, a dog can’t shoot a gun, or fist fight. So we have nothing to fear, let them run wild because a cute little treat will calm them. But when a group is made to feel superior and that construct is broken down they feel worthless. Which is why this ideology of an all White America is actually ridiculous. Because superiority extends itself to control and commands. Without a minority group serving as a buffer in the middle, slowly but surely that control and command turns on itself. America has created a problem for itself, and will just have to deal with the fact that a psychological ugliness was designed to control, not just minorities, but White people as well.


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I OWE IT TO YOU: WHY NEVER FORGETTING THOSE WHO FOUGHT FOR YOUR RIGHTS IS IMPORTANT

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“For those who died, I thank you.”


As a young man born in the year 1987, I did not experience those turbulent years of the Civil Rights Movement. Now my parents on the other hand saw the tail end, and there’s of course the generations prior. So as a child, I grew up going to school, eating where I wanted, and using public restrooms. Not once did I understand how I got to that point. All I knew is that when someone needed to go to the bathroom, you went. But what I didn’t know until my mother sat down and talked with me, is that it was not always like that in America. And that I should never forget why I am able to do what I do.

And she reminded of this because for the longest there were not only demographics of citizens, but an entire systematic push to keep me from having the basics of necessities. So as I went to school, I always performed well academically because she reminded me at one time how illegal it was for me to go Image result for white onlyto the schools I went to in America. Whenever I used a restroom, she not only told me, but we watched the video footage of Black men and women being attacked just for trying to consume a meal or urinate at public rest stops. So my reason for not getting into trouble is not mainly because of the enforcement of the judicial system, but more so by way of these men and women who died. There are unmarked graves of countless Black people who gave their lives, a lot of which you will never know their names.

So now as an adult, I do so much because they really didn’t have to pave that way. Still today, some of those individuals from that time period are here with us. People who were either teenagers or adults in the fight. And even at times when I see things differently than they do, I can never hate. I can never hate those who Image result for civil rights movementsacrificed so much for me. And no, these men were not the reason I got into my college of choice or landed a job I wanted. But it was because the pressure they placed that made companies even look in my direction. America didn’t want me to have those rights, and had it not been for these men and women, how long would Jim Crow have really lasted. 90 years,  100 years, 200 years; when was the appropriate time to end segregation.

We all would like to think that those types of events had to end, but why? If not for fighting for rights, whose to say? You have of course the critics, yet their voices are to a great degree irrelevant to me. A country tells you to go fight and defend your country, but when you return don’t sit at this table counter. Then you can’t Image result for al and jessesay my country, because in my country you eat where you choose. Otherwise it’s your country, and if I am the lesser, then why are you depending on a lesser to fight for what is yours. So thanks to the men and women who challenged the ideologies of what I am and what was expected of me. For it was you who reminded me before you’re Black, you’re a man, and before that you’re human. You weren’t fighting for my freedom of speech, but my freedom to exist. You did in the past, and still in the present. So despite what the critics think and feel you have my love and respect.

In the end, I dedicate this life of mine to you. Those who fought who are still alive and to those who died in the struggle: Al Sharpton, Alex Haley, Andrew Young, Angela Davis, Assata Shakur, Barack H. Obama, Bobby Seale, Booker T. Washington, Cornel West, Denmark Vesey, Dick Gregory, Dred Scott, Eldridge Cleaver, Elijah Muhammad, Fred Hampton, Frederick Douglass, Gabriel Prosser, George Washington Carver, Harriet Tubman, Harry Belafonte, Huey P.Image result for black historyNewton, Ida B. Wells, Jackie Robinson, James Baldwin, James Meredith, James Weldon Johnson, Jesse Jackson, Jim Brown, John Lewis, Kathleen Cleaver, Louis Farrakhan, Madam C. J. Walker, Malcolm X, Marcus Garvey, Martin Luther King Jr., Mary McLeod Bethune, Maya Angelou, Maxine Waters, Medgar Evers, Muhammad Ali, Nat Turner, Ralph Abernathy, Rosa Parks, Shirley Chisholm, Sojourner Truth, Stokely Carmichael, Thurgood Marshall, W. E. B. Du Bois, and many others who were lesser known or even unknown, yet gave their lives for me. I love you, “WE” love you.


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1619: HOW FAR HAVE WE COME AS AFRICAN AMERICANS

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“What happens when identity has to be recreated?”


Two years from now will be the year 2019, which will mark the 400 year period since the first Africans were brought to America. So much between then and now has happened, and the question now remains. How far have Black people come in America and how far do we still need to go? Let’s take a look in the past for just a moment. Imagine, each person, coming from their respective tribes, with their respective cultures. Being dragged to a new land, not knowing what was in store once you got there. Trying to understand why looking out into the sea you can’t find the river banks from which you came to return back home. And now you’re in this new place for life, with people you don’t know.

Fast forward to today, where we have been for almost 400 years. But, we have really only had rights since about the early 1970’s. That means African Americans have been experiencing freedom for roughly 45 – 50 years. You america, architecture, famousmight say, how so? Well, freedom allows you to vote, which we couldn’t do until coming into the 1970’s from the 1960’s. Freedom says you can go to any school you want to attend. But in the 1970’s and even as early as the 1980’s institutions were resistant in letting Blacks attend. Freedom grants you housing wherever you want to live, which is even more recent than the right to vote. Freedom grants the privilege to marry who you want without question. Laws on books forbid interracial marriage in various states in this country. The only progressive environment that has moved with more pace has been sports and the United States Armed Forces.

But what still needs to happen. Because we have poor education in inner city communities. There is a disproportionate number of violent crimes and a breakdown of the family. What’s interesting is that this is more of a recent phenomenon. If you look into the past, two parent households were the norm in the Black community. Black people had close nit communities, crime was nearly nonexistent, and overall morale was in tack. So what does that mean, we have to back track and lose our rights again to have control over our communities. Is there some sort of trade off, “You go back to segregation and then life will change.” Or is it more simple than that?

For example, I look at Chicago, a city that is plagued with crime, and also my father’s place of birth. And he has stated that it is a mixture of heavy Whtie and Black Police Car on Roadgang recruitment and lack of establishment by the law because of politicians not doing their jobs. It has been a rogue city for quite some time and with more and more schools closing, yet children are not being placed in other districts, problems are going to really climb. Which brings me to my next question. If schools are closing and countless kids are left in these inner city areas without a school home, should we start to home school as a community? Should Black people disregard the public school system in cities like Chicago? I mean, they’re shutting them down anyways, why not.

And that is the lead in to my next question, What is in the future? America is changing more and more everyday, and if we are not prepared issues will worsen. And not really on just a racial side, but economic. In today’s society, there is still not adequate access in poor areas to a lot of opportunities. Or is it? Black people are one of the largest demographics of smart phone users. That is a tool for learning all on it’s own. Which brings me to the next phase, putting yourself in the know. Those who are willing to put themselves in the know can and will elevate no matter what their economic circumstance or ethnic background. Having that mobile device means you do now have access to a lot of opportunities.

You may say how so? Well, this is not your mother and father or grandparents generation. Google search engine and YouTube has allowed access to what was once the unknown the know. For example, I Black Samsung Tablet on Google Pagelearned to write screenplays, my books, setup my website, and build social media all through tutorials on YouTube and searching through Google. So if we are big smart phone users, then we have the access in hand. All it takes is the attempt to sit and learn. Open yourself up to the opportunities that lie ahead. So, in the end, we have to do something. Life is getting harder by the day; and not just for us, everyone. Adjusting to the major technological shifts that will happen is a must in succeeding in life. If you are not bent on learning and broadening your base, then that America dream you want will no be anywhere within your sights.


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REVERSE HISTORY: WHAT IF WHITE PEOPLE WERE SLAVES

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“What if history was switch around.”

Let’s say instead of the Transatlantic Slave Trade in Africa, it took place in Europe. What if Africans invaded Portugal, Spain, Italy, Sicily? What if Africans paid some Europeans money to lure them from inland? And what if we placed them on ships and brought them to the new world? That means White people in the Caribbean (Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Haiti, Cuba, Jamaica, Bahamas, Barbados, etc.), Central America (Panama, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, etc.), South America (Brazil, Uruguay, Colombia, Venezuela, etc.), and the United States.

Now let’s look at the country I live in, the United States. What if Europeans were brought to the southern states as slave labor? This means almost 300 years of persecution in a country where Black people would be the forefathers of a declaration that says we are all equal instead of Whites. White people would have to work for nearly another 100 years, before they would be free by us as Black people. Now the emancipation of White people would be signed, but not fully free until 1865, a few years after originally written.

Freedom would be short lived because once we free White men and women, then they are forced for nearly 100 years of social inequality. Yet the segregation is supposed to be separate, but equal, and yet far from that. They would eventually fight for their right to vote, right to hold political office, right to life and pursuit of happiness just as Black people do. Even after segregation ends, we deny White people jobs, so with limited employment opportunity, they are turned a life of crime through drugs such as Heroin, Cocaine, and Crack Cocaine. This really gives way for Black law enforcement to control the communities that White men and women dwell.

Oh yeah, during this time we change the rules of welfare from a family policy to a new more sinister policy. Women can receive aid from the government as long as the White male is gone. He leaves for one day, then one week, one month, and eventually he is gone forever. So in combination with welfare and narcotics, White people are now on a collision course with failure. Failure that would rival that of the segregation they experience. Eventually their community would come to a form of satisfaction once they are able to elect the first White president. White people express their pride in a man who for the first time is holding a post that has been long denied by Whites.

You see, reversing the history, I wonder how all these experiences by Blacks would fair with White men and women. I’m writing this because so many people who recently voted for Donald Trump has been seen as a Whitelash. An attack and push back over the nation’s first Black president. Is this true or is this false? Has America really made strides in changing the past or are we going back to our racial ways. Recently there have been protest over Trump’s election and he has not even taken office yet. Only time will tell from here on out. But what would this country look like if history was reversed?

What Is Heritage Really: The Confederate Flag Argument

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“Is it about segregation or self-sustainability?”

Throughout the United States history, the Confederate flag has long been a subject of a lot of debates. What does this flag truly mean? Some say it is the flag that is representation of people who wanted to keep slavery going; in addition to the fact they lost the war.  Others state that it is a representation against the government not allowing the southern regions to express the freedom of the states. Then you have the those who are more overt that feel it is segregation and proud of it. I myself have views on what the Confederate flag means and why people still today fly it with pride.

In my view of what the Confederate flag means, I first try to look at the side of people who are for the flag. All throughout my own life I have heard the words pride. People state that, “It’s not racism, it’s heritage.” Now I have disagreed, but as a rational thinker I have to understand what it is before showing resentment myself. So I observe the history of the south. At the height of not only slavery, but Jim Crow, the south was the dominant region. You could almost say, if not for the most part, it’s what built the United States. Toward the end of slavery, America was the wealthiest country in the world, and it came in part because of the strong leadership of the men who built and maintained the Confederacy. (We’ll come back to the slavery aspect later).

Not only did these men lead the Confederacy, you could almost say they have taken the blame for keeping slavery going. In their defense, they would say yes we did, but the north benefited as well, if not more. To call these men in the south a bunch of hillbillies who hated African Americans was just inaccurate. Especially considering it’s what provided so much economic stability for the country that gave the men up north their power positions. Not only that, but Confederates wanted to express their own freedom of the places in which they dwelled. They felt, “We have our own government, our own self-sustaining economy, our own trade deals.” “Why should we be forced to conform to the North’s way when we obviously can have our own state.

Well this is where the idea of racism comes into play. That strong leadership, that strong economy, that strong self-sustaining system was due to African Americans being held against their will. Slavery kept the machine motors running. But in today’s society, people fly the flag and say it’s not hatred, it’s heritage. Tough to say considering the subjugation is what kept the system strong. How I see the matter, is if the Confederates would have been told, “Fine, keep your system, keep your flag, keep your everything.” “But, you can not hold these group of people against their will.” “We are not saying you’re forced to employ them or give them anything, but they are no longer held to service you.” There still would have been resistance in telling these men how to run their region of the country.

And that is what makes the heritage argument so difficult for me to understand. Because I have always asked the question, what is heritage really? It’s tough for people to explain because keeping the power was keeping Black people against their will. Now had the Confederates have said fine, we’ll free them, but we want our own system from here on out in the south. We want our own power base. Meaning our own trade deals, currency, farming techniques, government structure, and so forth. Had they have done this, the resistance would or course be there. Hell, I might even disagree, just off of the fact that we would have a split nation, but then I could to a great degree remove the slavery aspect.

And that is what makes the topic so divisive. I’m sure there are people who fly the flag as a symbol of wanting more freedom of state, or even in rebellion against our current system’s policies. But the fact remains that the men who fought so hard “did” want to keep slavery going. They “did” want to hold a group of people against their will. And whether you want to believe it or not they “were” bigoted and lost the war. So today in the year 2016 is that the case, I can’t say for sure. But in that time period it “was” about slavery as well as a symbol fighting desegregation in the south during Jim Crow.