Where can Black Americans go to resolve the myriad issues, opposition and injustices that we confront every single day in our personal lives and as a people? What will stop, or at least seriously slow, this downward spiral in which throes we find ourselves at virtually every station of this society today? Who will confess and address myriad threats to our fundamental citizenship?
It won’t be Republicans, whose antipathy for Blacks has been conspicuous and on full display for generations. It won’t be Democrats who, while claiming to be friends of the people, take you for granted while offering promises and conversation with no strategy for, or commitment, to change.
It would be the U.S. Supreme Court, which prefers to enable the frenzy of those adamantly opposed to social justice and equality. Rather than the High Court thwarting or counter-attacking the assault on rights, the N-Justices retreat even from those inadequate provisions and protections on the books.
The solution won’t come at the state level, where too many governors advocating change and too many lawmakers are leading the charge to turn back the hands of time with legislation that disrupts the foundation of liberty and democracy in this nation.
Revealing our bitter truths to the masses once precipitated national shame.
That is no longer the case. The revelation and support of a Black agenda will definitely not be provided through conventional media with its narrow selection of coverage, mistreatment of facts, lack of empathy, and jaded editorial perspectives and commentary disguised as news and truth, complicating and marginalizing issues of people of African culture or lineage.
No one will save us but us. Blacks need to know the cavalry is not coming. Blacks and genuine allies need to regroup and focus on extreme measures of education, registration and meditation if we are to overcome the seemingly insurmountable obstacles enemies toss in our path.
From the time they learn to walk and talk, Black children must more broadly learn to read. Literacy is the core of education and new, inventive approaches need to start at the pre-school level but not be abandoned among those already falling short in high school and even college. Fraternities, sororities, faith-based and civic organizations must get involved.
If the post-Obama era has taught us nothing else, it confirms the knowledge that elections matter. No matter how we prepare the next generation, they will be at a constant disadvantage if legislation and the lawmaking process dilutes or negates their power to participate in democracy. Gerrymandering, voter suppression and other tactics must be counteracted at the polls.
Finally, we need to gather our thoughts individually and collectively to seriously contemplate, think out, or in a word meditate on who we are and where we are going. The Bible tells us that as a man or woman think, so will they do. Our thought process must be deeper – not shallow.
Black people effortlessly generate vigorous conversation about sports, the opposite sex, money matters, petty politics, religion, entertainers and similar non-consequential banter. Not that any of these discussed in depth would not be productive. But shallow, pointless rhetoric is an exercise in futility. The more profound process of meditating is required.
A casual mention of our needs as a people or occasional round-circle forums or town halls are merely events. We need to read, we need to share and explore that wisdom of the sages of our community – with no regard to their age or social standing. We need to commit to being THINKERS and DOERS.
When it’s okay for women to be addressed, or to salute one another, with as vile a reference as a female canine, our mind is not right. When men take honor in or proudly wear the mantra of “dogs,” our moral barometer is way off; our thought process compromised. We need to center our thinking,
This diversion would not be possible with diverting from the thinking of our Creator. Such perversion of thought is only possible in the absence of God.
Scripture tells us: “Blessed is the one…whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and not. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit within season and whose leaf does not wither – whatever they do prospers.” – Psalm 1.
The most reliable engines for change in Black America are Education, Registration, and Meditation or our faith as a people, in God. Pessimists worry that it may already be too late, and our citizenship is effectively cancelled. But the importance of the final point is that, through God all things are possible.
This is not a lamentation of our predicament. This is a clarion call on the urgency of the hour and a reminder that we as a people still have the power to make a difference. There is work to be done but it is do-able.
In the end, we have no choice. Consequences of apathy, settling for the status quo, or faith without works will be dire. The bottom line is education, registration and constant clear-headed, spiritual meditation more than ever offer the best keys to actualizing our highest possibilities. Stay focused.
CIRCLE CITY CONNECTION by Vernon A. Williams is a series of essays on myriad topics that include social issues, human interest, entertainment and profiles of difference-makers who are forging change in a constantly evolving society. Williams is a 40-year veteran journalist based in Indianapolis, IN – commonly referred to as The Circle City. Send comments or questions to: [email protected]