We have been asleep at the wheel for far too long.
While we have been asleep, life has steadily been passing us by. For too long we have been bystanders in this thing called life and not equitable active participants.
While we have been asleep our children have been left without leaders. Our families have been forced to grow up and go on without us. Children without fathers, sisters without brothers, mothers without sons, wives without husbands.
While we have been asleep our children, our future, are growing up on a systemic assembly line where they are being packaged and shipped off into a box, whether a cell or a casket.
While we have been asleep our future is being ripped right from the grasps of our hands.
Millions of lives are being aborted each year before the have yet to have had a chance to live. Our kids are being killed by our kids in the form of the home grown terrorism called gangs. Our girls are being sold and trafficked into sex slavery fueling a multi-billion dollar industry that is being financed by the men who should be fighting to protect them, not fighting for the premium going rate.
While we have been asleep we have had to awaken in chains.
We have taken the chains that were once placed around our ancestors necks, wrists, & feet and have now placed them around our minds & hearts.
Then we have taken this mental & emotional bondage and turned it back into a physical bondage through drug addiction, substance abuse, and incarceration.
So where our ancestors found themselves caged in slave pens, we now find ourselves caged in the slave pens of the criminal justice system, in prison cells confined in the Department of Corrections. Waiting, waiting, waiting until we…
It’s time to WAKE UP, it’s time to WAKE UP, I said IT IS TIME TO WAKE UP!
These are the heartfelt words I used to convey the significance of the days event at this years Black Heritage Cultural Diversity Event. As the Master of Ceremonies at the event these are the words that I opened with and that set the stage for a dynamic event. An event that truly has set the bar for all future events.
From spoken word poetry to rapping, from African dances to hiphop dances, from intellectual speakers to community leaders and activist, from food for thought to that good ol’ soul food. This years event had it all.
However as the MC I had to stay true to the theme and wake the people up to the facts.
That black woman are 35 times more like to experience domestic violence than white women.
That imprisonment is the new slavery for the black community.
That on average, states spend over 3 times as much per prisoner as we are spending per public school pupil. What does that say about our values as a society? As a nation?
So, what is black life worth?
No, better yet what are we saying a life is worth? Regardless of the color or creed. Whether Black life, White life, Red life, Yellow life, or Brown life. All life matters, it is time we wake up and realize this.
But, to do this we need leaders to rise up and start waking the people up. A spiritual awakening, a conscious awakening.
In particular we need our men to step up and stop avoiding their roles and responsibilities as men. Our women have been doing all they can with all they have and with little to no support or assistance from their male counterparts.
We need men to teach, train, raise up, and lead men. As our strength as a man comes from our foundation as a boy. Unfortunately without the presence of an adequate male role model who do the lost boys have to turn to to learn about manhood… the streets? Yeah, what a joke!
Trust me I know that it is far easier to build the boy than mend the man. And it sure as heck saves a lot of heartache, pain, tears, and tax payer dollars.
I look towards the future and I fear it not because through the grace of God I am hopeful we can change it.
I am a man of faith and hope, just as we as a people are a people of faith and hope. In fact this nation was built on the foundational building blocks of faith and hope (although we have gotten away from that foundation).
It is this faith and hope in God that has played a pivitol role the lives of His people. It is this faith and hope in God that has kept us going and keeps us going while most others would have been broken and would have given up.
It is God that has given us not a spirit of fear but of power, love, and a sound mind. It is He that is our strength and has given us the amazing spirit of resilience.
It is God who is our hope.
Just as the theme of this years event was WAKE UP! It is time that we wake up because if we remain asleep we can only dream. If only we are dreaming than we are consciously unconscious and blinded to our present realities.
I don’t know about you but I believe we have come too far to go back now.
Faith has been what has sustained us, but it is hope that has kept us going.
Faith has brought our people this far, but it is hope that is our future.