Wednesday, November 26, 2008
I am writing in hopes that you are receiving this letter in the highest state in spirit and emotion/ in being. Please forgive me if in anyway this letter doesn't receive you in the loving, respectful manner i intend it. For, you and i have never met but i cannot say that i do not know you. Having read a little about your life and your decision to stop the world, in many ways throughout my many days i feel i can relate; in many ways we were two of a kind.
Our existance is so complicated; so complex yet so simple. I cannot find a word for how to express it, but i do feel we are all connected reguardless of the fact that we live our lives respective of one another. So i sit here at this very moment crying for what i don't understand yet understand perfectly.. wishing there was something i could have done so that you knew there was someone like me, like you, out there_if only that would have made a difference.
In one of your messages to the world you wrote how you were the type of person whom would do anything for a friend, and you offer to speak at ANYtime of day, whether it be daylight or in the wee hours of early morning, should they need someone to talk to. I know in my case, i can honestly say that had i known you personally i would have loved to take you up on that offer, although, i don't know if i would have... and i am sure you understand; because like i said we are two of a kind, and while our kind yearns for the touch, we struggle letting anyone near; we have so much to deal with within ourself!
That message will haunt your loved ones till their last day, and if even for a moment it will tap into us others, to process and sit on. And hey, maybe it will/has even inspired many to go and give someone they haven't spoken to in awhile the call they needed to receive! But nobody will ever be able to get over the fact that such a loving giving person as yourself disallowed your physical to move into another day, because you couldn't stand feeling so cold, and we, whether we knew it or not, denied you the warmth you so needed, and that we were so capeable of giving.
It may sound sac-religeous, but you died like Jesus did. You did!
The masses were gathered for your final moment, each one of them precious
in blood and in name! Yet because they had never discovered they had your unique kind of love
they arrived there eager to carry on in the most horrid, beastly essence of the bottom of our being; for we are also capeable of being so cruel.
I know you forgive them. Some condemn you for 'wanting attention'. They have grown so cold in this inhumane world that to them this has become a dirty thing. Don't we all deserve 'attention'?
Some insult your intelligence by invoking other avenues you could have taken
in dealing, while rambling through table conversations with the same
lack of compassion which moved you to where you are!
Moved you, for many days, unwillingly, until
you could no longer tell the difference
between your direction towards fate; and the assumed normalcy of standing in place!
When i peeped your myspace page last week you appeared to me to be a very active, well liked young man. You had pictures of you with many friends and dancing music backing the party-like ambiance you had set for people to receive you when they came to your page. Who would have known you were so lonely?
That was something like a week ago, but you have stayed on my mind brother and so i had to go back. And in doing so i found that some of your loved ones had created a memorial page for you. It is beautiful!
Now you know! You know how people feel about you, reguardless of how hard it may be able to accept it with them not showing it. Perhaps folks imagine that from where you rest some of those showing remorse are liars and really showed no real interest in you in the bit while you were here. But i know you forgive that.. i know that at this point you understand. That in fact not everyone is as blessed as you were when you were here.. to understand their ability to love and the value of such love and unconditional concern for another. I know you forgive them. Because i know from up there it is easier to see
that we in fact are all connected! And though it took you the sad tragic road to get to the place where you know and you feel like you matter, you are now getting to know that and to feel that. And that is fine.. that is ok brother, that is alright. So implies each one of the prayers you are receiving.
Thank you for giving your life
so that i could reflect and rejoice
on this day
Sunday, November 23, 2008
Everybody's avoiding being bumped into
accidentally bumping into one another
on the edge of our eye
everyone balancing between
being seen and being seen seeing
between shins at the vents
and signs at the ceiling,
cris-crossing a scan of the divide
or dead panning the length of a ride
dead in our eye
intensify a pressure to put the breaks on
the neck on the knees' pardon me's
edgy seats rattling mute communiques
into the station roar in the face of, then
round platforms more of faces stuck,
into the next train to growl along
full of possom naps and graven bone, still,
before the peep that flees and ducks
Wednesday, November 19, 2008
---The night Barack Obama won the election a young Black Muslim man, Liberian, was attached in Staten Island by a bunch of young white men who jumped out their ride with baseball bats.
---A few days ago a white army pvt. attacked a black college student in the heat of an argument about Obama.
---Across the nation news agencies have reported a rise in white supremist and racist vandalism
---The Secret Service is investigating death threats against a President at a record level since Obama's election.
An AM New York story provides the following quotes which sum up what i'm getting at pretty well:
"The work of reconciliation doesn't come from having historical amnesia." -L'Heureux Lewis, Asst. Professor of Sociology and black studies at City College.
"This country's history of discrimination can't be overturned or reversed through one political event, but through a series of small steps over the course of many generations" -Ilya Leybovich, Prospect Heights
"The hope expressed by some that with Obama's election, America entered a 'post-racial' period is probably naive." -Margaret Fung, Executive Director of the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund
Some will read this and say i am being unfair, that i am somehow shitting on Obama's accomplishment or not giving due credit to the 'American Dream'. So as i do with all of my arguments, allow me to take this time to acknowedge those things. I have been clear in past postings about Obama '09, that what he has done is extraordinary. That he has probably worked harder and under more stress than any President in HISTORY when you consider that his movement was largelly grass-roots, from the ground up, getting out the vote of people whom have never voted in their lives; not an easy thing to do. Did it all being Black amongst hundreds of politicians whom not only look different, but in large number probably were raised amongst family and friends whom preached intolerance about race. Shit... i swear his hair has gotten gray over the past year!
It DOES prove that young Black men and women can grow up to be whatever they want -if they gather as many chips as they can manage, and *play the game right-
___But dont get it twisted; Black people have KNOWN THIS all along! They KNEW they were capeable... Till now however, they havn't known whether they were ABLE! Didn't know if the system of gatekeepers sustaining this country's institutions would lift enough gates to let one of their own through to the top!I put it in these terms because there are still PLENTY of paternalistic/ racist ass folks who are looking at this like as if though Blacks have finally bred someone with enough brain power for the job; which of course is utter ignorant dumb-assed.ness! (by the way.. fuck with the switch if these people are you because your power has been off for a long time.)
On the flip-side, when you consider that indeed there are ALOT of people (expressing this attitude) still lacking confidence in Black people whom aren't Obama (and these are mostly liberals whom express it this way); that there are still ALOT of people whom would hold anomosity against brothers for Obama's win , or go out and hurt others with beatings and posting humiliating public statments into the wind and onto walls (probably 'conservatives').. it becomes apparent that the whole notion that we are behind race is whishful thinking.('Come on dude, it aint about race anymore.. we have a black president' takes 'How could i be racist? I have black friends' to a WHOLLLEEE NEW LEVEL ! )
What is dangerous about a time like this is that it becomes HiGh TiMe for self proclaimed guardians of patriotism (and alot of these same so called ALL-American folks talk about race not being an issue while hipocritically throwing the N word around with friends), to come out and spread mis-information and loaded rhetoric aimed at suppressing the issue of race once and for all. ___A perfect example is how under the same AM NewYork article i quoted from above, a list of 'racial epithets' was listed to give meaning and supposed historical significance to each. And within that very listing you understand what i'm talking about by LOADED when you read between the lines.
For "MUTT" they have: Used for people of mixed ethnic backround. President Elect Barack Obama used it as a joking self reference, but others find it offensive. When i read that definition it struck the tone you hear when folks try justifying their use of the N word by saying "Well, they use it themselves!" ...did you read it again? go on now, i'll give you a second... ok so now you read it, am i right or am i right? They couldn't just give the damn definition, they HAD to first somehow de-base its offensiveness.
Then for "CRACKER" the paper takes an angle which aims to victimize whites by the use of the word. No doubt it is distasteful, amateurish, non-progressive to just call folks crackers.. we all have family, sometimes white, and at times family is good to us. But im not targeting the issue of whether the word is right or wrong to use. I am shedding light on the truth being the paper totally misinforms the public on the origins of the word; stating This slur against whites historically means a poor white person. In the same light i want to have you ask yourself in what way is it offensive (in comparison to Nigger) when it simply implies that someone is poor? goes to show you that to verbally attack the ruling race class is to say they in fact don't have the power they have the priveledge to be afforded, as if though that should send a gasp out their mouths and a hand to their chest "HUHHHH!" lol ...Actually though that is the reporter shooting him/herself in the foot DESPITE the fact they didn't define the slur correctly. In all actuallity the historical origin of CRACKER dates back the slavery in the U.S. It was the term Black Slaves began using for The Man; associating HIM ..with his whip! They couldn't call him a bitch or a shit head, they called him the cracker. If anything, at the time, that term was the opposite of degrading.. it in fact reaffirmed the slave masters power over them!
Examples such as these, as i've stated, is how this time is actually more dangerous for race relations. We are in a time where the Black Brain is more suseptable to being 'washed' than at any time in history. If you are a 13 year old boy from the slums and you've gone through 3 home room teachers in one year, mornings in school on an empty stomach and unfocused mind, stress from conditions at home and in your neighborhood and likely a broken family, you are now EXPECTED to overachieve.. whereas in the past your success was wished for. we can forget about philanthropy and government funds to go towards investment in bettering local schools, hospitals and infrastructure (which is important because when your surroundings are the slum your mind becomes the slum, and all the conotations of the slum promoted in the media carry with you).. he can forget about this investment.. he must now make it in spite of these conditions, and if he fails.... well then that to many will prove true the theory that he is inferior!
Al Quida's P2oG division (copy and paste "P2oG" into google) puts out a statement quoting Malcom X, and an MSNBC analyst alludes to Al Quida quoting "60's divisive figures". ...All of a sudden Barack Obama gets elected and now Malcom X is beginning to be paint brushed into the icon of bad blacks? I mean in his time they tried doing that to him by contrasting him with Martin Luther King (while J Edger Hoover was using the FBI to spy on King; goes to show you whom was actually divisive and wikid *google "COINTELPRO"). This is indication that the campaign to tear this man down for inspiring Blacks to stick up for themselves in a time when they were accustomed to walking the streets with their eyes down and lack of self esteem in their posture , is NOT OVER. Clearly we are seeing a white washing of race in America or we are damn near close to it, and YES i am talking about an OVERT movement to totally erase the past while ignoring the implications such attacks as the ones i listed in the beginning of this post signify. Shame about it is that with the election of Obama self hating/ ashamed blacks will no doubt incorporate themselves in this movement to suppress the truth as well.
This is depressing to me, because all it does is show our lack of true initiative to address failure in this country. Because in this country we don't admit to failure or being wrong. We haven't admitted it in the very formation of this nation through genocide, dont do it in our wars, we dont do it with the fact that we have higher crime statistics than other industrial countries, we dont do it when talking about equality! We have our heads so far up our ass about these so called ideals we stand on, and are quick to respond to such truths as (we were NOT one of the first countries to end slavery in the 19th century -most of Europe and South America had already been freeing slaves-; And we WOULD NOT be one of the first countries to elect a female -there have been middle eastern coutries with higher female officials... how shameful is that?-or even a Black man to President), we respond with Well, we're not perfect but we are better than the rest!, when we in fact SHOULLLD not give a fuck about what they do in the rest of the world and worry about moving us forward here! As the woman i quoted above stated: It will take small steps, and it will take work on all ends.
First off the problems must be acknowledged! That doesn't mean passing a bill that says 'we apologize for slavery'.. but by acknowledging it in the American consicousness by putting it in school books. By the 5th grade students should know about the stone wall rebellion and gay rights, and should be discussing the progress and lack of progress we've made on this issue. They should already know, not only that Blacks were slaves but about the movement to abolish slavery with Nat Turner, Sojourner Truth, The Maroons, the Black/White Union revolts against big business in which workers united across racial barriers for rights, and should be discussing oppression in institutions and internalized oppression.. should be discussing the effects of Willie Lynch's philosophy of divide and conquer on the black family.
Problem is too many people profit off of us being mis-informed. So they would rather put fluffy reality shows on TV and keep documentaries old and boring than pay young minds in acting, music, prodiction, film to make new ones that will actually get the youth to listen. Every generation is getting more and more apolitical. It is becoming increasingly popular to project ignorance.. its supposed to be funny, and 'free'.
Meanwhile a young Black Female in one of my workshops proclaimes after the election: "Now we got our 40 acres and a mule", and young Black Male in another one of my workshops expressed his gratitude for the Europeans whom colonized and pillaged Africa for 'saving' Africans from their savage existance (never a moment realizing how savage it was that these very people stacked his ancestors laying down in the bottom of a ship for months, over which time they had to eat eachother to survive and dwell in their own shit and piss before arriving on these American shores)
It is a slave mind.
Hopefully Barack keeps Malcom by the window somewhere in his own! Because while we try to force history to swallow the blue pill, he is bringing the struggle up with him.
Monday, November 17, 2008
Flickers in the Fray
Nubby limb, broken shackle, joint and nail
Of hideous claws planting so called
Rats with wings afoot
Waiting; stopping, moving along
And stopping, then moving on, and on
To solicit a look with a beggars timing
Down to the bridge of your book
New York as gray; sparrow down
From high beams in a New York subway
Heaven of course must be for doves
As must love they've said, they say, they'll say
And birds with pretty Spanish names
Like paloma, whirl in the plaza.
But notice the foot of the pigeon masses gathered
For bread; really place your focus on their legs
How together they flicker a crimson red
That sparks brilliance
from aloof melancholy,
While taming the New York fray!
Thursday, November 13, 2008
"Well, I say... i farted YOU out my ass!"
^lol. My homey/co-worker had a good come back.
She's a strong woman, and although we are mostly business and rarely self-depricate or rank on one another's person or make up, we do at times find time to throw a loving barb. I don't acknowledge the language that gives label to and then assumes so-called 'political correctness' is a pole distanced far from 'Freedom of speech'. But i guess if i had to uniform my words into such venacular i would say that, yea, sometimes we in fact can get a bit tight about expressing ourselves. And reguardless of our reighteous efforts, i feel that is actually often a recipe for a more elitist however-so less derogatory swagger. So we were setting up for a workshop and i threw that out there to fuck with her. Her comeback blew me though. Got to give it to her.
Though the allusions of 'rib' and 'fart' may sound comical and hyperbolic to say the very least were we to recognize, as i am about to have you do...NOW: that at one time (and even today) there are people who believe such animated stories about our existance; ...who is to say that those whom believe it are wrong? They are theories, just like the notion that we evolved or migrated from space are theories, which have a set of moral and at times scientific rationale to defend them as true (except, i think the fart one is just intended to be a joke and nothing more).
The probability that all but one of these stories, if not all of them actually origionated from some kind of process of indoctrination set forth to engineer a social psychology which validates the culture of whatever HUMAN created them____IS CERTAIN!
I mean after all, they cant ALL be true....
Or can they?
The conversation gets deep, because there are many schools of thought, each of which may even view reality through a paradigm which makes it fundamentally impossible for agreement across views. And this is why we see alot of these philosophical positions remaining today. They can never be knocked down, because the whole framework of discourse around each of these 'truths' are customed not to find an objective answer to the question, but to defend their own premise!
WHAT DO I MEAN?
It depends on how you'd rather see it! Either everything is true because whomever said so believes it is! Or everything is a lie, because it all comes from our imagination!
While i myself am quite progressive a young chap, i am beginning to ground my awareness not in conservative notions of' 'reality', but rather, definative conviction. I have explored the questions and i am beginning to sort the jelly beans between the bowl on the left and the one on the right. On the matter of this pregnant 'man', without (ridic)uling i can't help but feel it's all pretty rediculous! And this is coming from an ally (i do identify as one) of homosexuals, lesbians, gays, queers, transgendered, etc. people. I know that simply stating that, doesn't put me in any position to judge; which is why i am being careful not to judge. But coming from an angle of MANHOOD; as a man, whom recognizes identity tenants fundamental to the culture of the male gender homosapean, i am going to defend and bare the standard of integrity which preserves my own! For you can be as 'liberal' or 'left' or 'radical' as you want or think you are, at the end of the day if you are not a warrior for your own you are nobody. In my own right i am a warrior for manythings, i don't just sit here talking shit because i think im smart or to correct anybody. I speak amongst the chorus whom want to represent the voiceless. And while MEN as the dominant/ priveledged gender of humankind, are certainly not voiceless that doesn't mean i cant call out a perpetraitor!
Now if this woman wants to identify as a man, and the law has been modified to accept that, and we as a loving community have sensed this womans humanity and sincarity in her decision to walk in the guard, i have no problem at all shaking HIS hand and including him. So that's not what makes him a perpetraitor. OK he don't got a real dick, OK he wasn't one of us when we was all wrestling and saying 'ill' about girls, OK he wasn't salivating with us over some fly honeys in our beastly years of puberty! But right now he is for his own psychological purposes allieging with us. Will he ever really know what it is to be a man? in some ways yes, because society will respond to him in a way that it does a man (those unaware that he is actually a woman at least), but intuitively he wasn't groomed in our experience, and hasn't wrestled with alot of our inner struggles (yes, we do have inner struggles, which while different than that of women, in fact ARE struggles, whether by de-construction or in building).
Where he DOES become a perpetraitor though is in getting pregnant. It is self everything; self righteous, self centered, self aggrandizing.. it is pretentious and deceitful! And by this i dont mean to call the dogs on him, or to promote any fear or hate. Im simply calling this dude out. We need to be invalidating this claim at this point that he is a MAN! Because he does not want to be a MAN! He wants to destroy the idea of gender identity. He has created this facade which stands on technology and an isolated, abusive sense of self empowerment, to convince us that he is a man whom is having a child. It has nothing to do with community! and others! At most it goes to prove that a woman can alter her hormones to appear to be a man! That is all! As far as identity politics, he has just discredited his claim to be a man. So NO THERE IS NO PREGNANT MAN! There is a woman whom has evolved to take on the physical traits of a man, yet keeps the most fundamental trait of womanhood; the maternal, the mother!
Now i appreciate that by doing this she raises questions, questions are always good for society. I will never conform with the practice of keeping matters of the human condition taboo. But there is a difference between being born with the mentality of the opposite gender, and thus the psychological makeup of one. So i do believe people are BORN GAY! I do believe there are MEN born with vaginas and breasts, whom long to be recognized as men, and the SHOULD be recognized as such. Im with that! But it is something different when you endeavor to trigger shock.
Therefore while i appreciate the fact that this woman has brought this discussion to our kitchen tables. Her job is done. And now i will respond promptly, in defense of our preservation as men, by calling her out on her perpetraiting ways. And i know all self-identified men, whether straight, gay or transgendered will agree that she is not one of us.
Thank you Ms. Mr Media Whore,
For giving us an opportunity
to re-assert our own identities (male and female alike)
Please take full security over your sacred priveledge of birthing a child,
and be as proud as i know your wife must be.
Saturday, November 8, 2008
The other day i was reading about
a proposal to remodel our trains
without seats, in order to make room
for the massive inpouring of straphangers
converted from the pump
Took that one day for them
to tap at their ass
and find their wallet gone
I might've mumbled out loud
Then as i lifted the page to turn
slick off my thumb on my tongue
an old headline i remember seeing
tagged across the dailies of Bloomberg's
first mayoral campaign recurred to me
Assuming he's kept his word
by commuting via subway to work,
i wonder how he holds on
the way he keeps his hands in his pockets
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Months back i wrote a blog posting entitled "How Barack Obama's Presidency Will Transform The United States Of America". ((Link below))
To sum it up, i basically spoke about how an Obama Presidency would result in a 4 if not 8 year dialogue on race in this country. I did not go out on the limb to state whether it would be for better or worse; that remains to be seen. In terms of dialogue though i've already got a couple of anecdotes relating the issue; some instances which have triggered wonder/assumption for myself or those around me concerning the issue.
--On November 4th my co-worker and i were on our way home from a special election day event with our youth. She always stops into this Indian Food restaurant, and it has been apparent in the past that the woman at the counter carries some kind of chip for my homegirl; rushes her, responds to simple questions rather aggressively, avoids eye contact... you know.. some of the things that would have you ask: is your friend black? (yes she is black). Anywayzzz. So we walk into this place, on election day, and the woman behind the counter was EXTRA nice. I mean like, big smile, what else can i help you with, folding the paper bag over then stretching her humble neck over the glass counter as she handed her change back. (I almost feel like sensationalizing a bit and saying she put her hands together prayer style.. but that didn't happen. Looked like that was where she was going though). So in MY MIND, recognizing this, i thought "Wow, this is strange. They must be finally realizing my friend brings them consistant business. They are coming around." What brewed on my friends mind was different. As we moved on a hot step fwrd she expressed a different read on the situation: "You seen that right? All of a sudden the country is going to have a Black President and she wanna treat black people all nice now." lol. I did laugh because though i hadn't thought that, it kind of made sense. Now remember, this is not a white woman behind the counter; she was Indian. Still, there was a total 180 in her attitude within like 5 days!
--This morning my sister friend and i were traveling to our site in Brooklyn. When we got there (BCAM High School), we approached the security guard with ID's out. The security guard (a Black Woman), told that same friend of mine to go on in, acknowledging "You don't have to sign in, you're here for the workshops". But she takes my card. haha. So my friend responds in my favor: "So does he." I didn't take it any resentful way, i just kind of was struck for a moment because we always enter the building together. The woman has seen me there weekly since the beginning of October. I still believe she had a simple brain fart about it, but i couldn't help flip it on my friend in jest when we got to the top of the stairs: "Oh we elect a Black Man and all of a sudden the light skinded folk gotta wait on the long line." haha
These are just two examples of how having a black president will influence our prejudices. We have never experienced this before. No doubt as he goes on doing as i predicted (making some decent and not so decent decisions/ as any other president would), our preconceived notions will fade and for most, Barack Obama; Black President will become Barack Obama; President. Unfortunatelly there are those whom have no doubt put a block up.. and will resist the healing our society needs. Unfortunatelly there are those whom have the smokes and mirrors up and will keep them up, riding their pride so high, it becomes easy to overlook that which deteriorates beneath our soles. And then there are those whom wish 4 years of hell as some sort of punishment for their peers electing a Black man!
I say God Bless us because right now we are a schizophrenic people, psychologically. Barack's fellow black brothers/sisters of America and the globe will pray he does not slip, and yet changes must be made, if you are Black you know this intuitively, so while you want him to be able to succeed you also have hope that he will go a bit above, a bit beyond towards making a better life more accessible. This becomes tricky and has for as long as this country existed, been a conflict. How to expand and stay close to the people simultaneously. Practically EVERY notable black public figure whom has lived a lifetime taking such risks has (in the eye of the black majority) either gone a bit too far to the left, thus generating a fear of 'backlash' against them all... or in his own interest conformed a bit too much with the right to continue serving in their favor (sell-out). Yea, eventually history vindicates these leaders, but during the time of their prowess they are a source of great insecurity. Though it may be hard to imagine at this point in time, even Martin Luther King while he was doing what he was doing, had many crossing their fingers, and at the height of his dissent, within many a black home, even drew murmurs pleading that he quit making trouble already! Not because they weren't in support of the man's ideas, but because they feared. They struggled with whether to accept what steps they'd made and cut the losses, or to continue on and risk Marshall Law clobbering down on them.
This has been an interesting ride because there are so many assumptions going around that reality itself has to a great degree been skewed. There is this fog after the war. And we are still waiting for the dust to settle to see what is really going on. Racism, Sexism, Capitalism, Socialism, terrorism (including state sponsored terrorism: Obama in fact did bring to issue the Right Wing supported assassinations of Union Leaders in Colombia)... these are all issues that have never been thrown on the table with such polarity. The conversation is OPEN folks! And then we have the people or in this case the dog, to those issues: the tale. We are wagging at the fukking senses!
-To my right are people who think Obama is the most liberal man on the face of the planet and will put a hammer and sickle on the red white and blue.
-To my left are people who believe Obama is not only the same old politics, but 10 times more dangerous because if he indeed does carry on the same old agenda, he is capable of garnering support in the blind faith of a newly 'politicized' demographic numbering the millions!
I have had numerous conversations with folks who do not vote for various reasons which all equate to= they do not believe in the system! While i respect their view and at times have wrestled with the idea of voting myself (i mean hey... my first two elections were losses to W!) i contend that in my notion of an ideal political system i would be voting reguardless! Therefore i am committing myself to the culture of democracy as i imagine it in its most effective form. With that i recognize that because we the people do not have the power, and have worked ourselves into a state of dependance on these dreams salesmen, voting must be supplimented with a culture of dialogue around power, rights, and initiative. Along with dialogue must be a commitment to action. To strategy and action around attaining what we need to survive, self-sustain, and even build upon our condition to live comfortably.
As a citizen amongst the common people of this nation i am looking forward to taking it upon myself to do what is in my capacity to contribute to change. I am in solidarity with the struggling Black Masses; i am in solidarity with the struggling Latino Masses; i am in solidarity with the struggling White Masses and Asian Masses. We are at a disadvantage if we do not PRACTICE democracy as a way of living... if we do not PRACTICE service to one another; sharing power and compromising differences, while staying true to our objective: getting things done. Things can only get done if we work together! But more simply, they will only get done if we work! Government may provide some new opportunities to access resources and space, or they may every once in awhile put a check in our pockets, but if we dont organize a voice to serve as a checks and balances, what interest is it to them to serve us? That's me speaking in a very stern, oppressive voice, but i'm just being real with you. Because Barak Obama will have MANY people knocking on his door for this and for that.
-- He will have big companies proposing backroom deals to build stadiums that will replace park land or small businesses in your community... and if you are not there to stand in the way, he is going to take their little kick back and grant them permission.
-- He will have Real Estate Developers knocking on his door asking if he can privatize the projects, and build condos in your neighborhood, while eliminating affordable housing laws, and if you are not standing in the way you will either wind up moving out of state or paying double what you do now for living in a neighborhood you mightve been raised in your whole life, yet has a higher cost of living since wall street moved in with its nannys and bitch ass dogs. Why not take their little kick backs? It's not like you're there to challenge him!
-- He will put education money into vouchers which will allow a select few in each school the funds to transfer to/enroll in a private school, RATHER THAN, using that same money to hire better teachers at the schools your children are already in; and for the benefit of a few, the many will suffer!
I am proud that we are electing Barack Obama and i trust him to a certain degree. He has the roots of a community organizer so while i sit here telling you that in our communities we need to be meeting consistantly to speak about and confront such issues as Domestic Abuse, Police Brutality, Gentrification, Economic Exploitation in zoning policies, etc... while i tell you this is the only way to take it upon ourselves to secure stability and progress in our communities, i have some kind of faith that Obama was more than an opportunist whom simply breezed through the South Side of Chicago for some kind of credibility. At the same time i google everything/ i study... and seeing whom he has surrounded himself with in his cabinet, i know not to depend on him alone to change anything! In fact we may even soon find that he isn't REALLY one of us! Joe Biden was one of the biggest names in the Credit industry; an industry that just lost its arm and the left side of its chest_and he will have some sort of influence over our economy.. Rahm Emmanuel is one of the top Israeli lobbyists in this country, so dont even think you can begin to imagine an end to war in the middle east.
The Civil Rights Movement in America has been a GIANT influence on my political and social views. I left Journalism school to study African and Puerto Rican Studies with a minor in Urban Studies. Students of Black History in America criticize the theory of a 'Black Messiah', one person whom will come along to save us all. There was Martin Luther King whom was murdered, and since, the people have looked for 'the next'. This has been counter progressive. No ONE individual can truelly make change! Even Martin Luther King himself didn't put himself on some national pedestal. Hidden is the history of GREAT organizing that took place in churches and community centers, and living rooms, before MLK was anybody. Planning protests, planning newsletters and radio addresses, good samaritan car rides for the bus strike. There were children, women and men, and elders.(watch the documentary "Eyes on the Prize") All MLK did at first was wait for call to come and speak at events. Eventually though he did rise up to become the leader of the movement because noone else could get the message across better. Still, it was a movement. So it will depend on US to, YES, support this man by willing to vote him in. But it is on us to now stay together. He organized us for the vote. We must now remain one, in order to see him through his 4 years, that he serves our interests. That he signs the blank check. And everytime he fronts he needs to be checked on that. THAT IS.. if it is more important that he ACTUALLY help change things, than it is that he sit there for four years so that they can paint him onto the back cover of our childrens hard cover history books.
If there are two things i can say that go hand in hand in moving us forward it is
1) that Barack Obama has made us promises, and been clear on where he stands with us and where he compromises us/ stands against us.
2) that he has contunually reminded us that it is UP TO US! that it is ABOUT US!
Let's hold him to his word and make sure
that he is willing to *help see this change through!
That we are apart of the decision making processes...
That we assess our problems, get them out in the open,
and create some demands so that OUR TAXES go towards
fixing OUR PROBLEMS!
YES WE CAN!