Giving Back to Your Community…

First off, I me say a prayer to the families in Haiti.  The poorest people always get the raw deal.  May the Lord have mercy on everyone.

Now for today’s topic, how can we give back to a community that has taken so much from us?  I was on Jermaine Dupree’s blog www.global14.com and he has a section called talk to me where he ask his readers questions.  Well, today it seems he’s in my neck of the woods in Northern California, Richmond to be exact and he was playing Xbox or something with some people from Richmond and they started talking about all the violence and crimes going on out here and in the Bay period.  So you know me, being who I am I had to put my quarter waters worth in and explained that it’s not just one thing that adding to the violence, it’s a combination of many.  I said the circumstances of today are the result of choices made yesterday.  Meaning, this is the result from broken homes, less than equally education, crime, violence and the WAR ON DRUGS of the 80’s and 90’s.  The crack babies are all grown up now and are more dysfunctional than we were because the chips are stacked against them from the get go.

Take me for instance, I grew up in the Oakland, Ca from the age of 12 and stayed until I was 25.  I came from a broken home, had a mother who was on drugs, went to schools with an educational system that was below average, but was all we had.  Sure, I fell victim to peer pressure during my teenage years.  I did things I should not have done and got away with some, but not with all.  One thing about my moms was that she might have done her thing, but when it came to raising her two sons she did not play.  Respect and education was HUGE to her and if any of those thing where not met, it was hell to pay and that’s why I spent my whole 7th grade year on punishment and getting ass whippings.  However, after that I was on point because I figured it out or should I say I figured her out.  I got a lot of leeway when I started bring home those 3.0 and above, boy I was never home, always in the street or at my boys house.

See, the point I’m trying to make is that she cared.  She cared enough to put the fear of the Lord in my butt.  See, there’s no one to care for these kids out here because they are too for gone and can’t be reached without a group or community effort.  So, how can we give back to a community that has taken so much from us?  We can’t, we just have to build another community from scratch or something because the shell that was once my community wasn’t all that great in the first place.  Back then that was the beginning of the end and today is the result and things are 100 times worst on so many levels that trying to fix it will be a losing effort because that’s what many have tried before.  We have to come anew, we have to pick up the dice and roll again because fixing something that’s shattered is crazy.  What can we do, how can we take our communities back?  Where does it start?  Who takes the first stand?  I don’t know, but something has to be done because we are losing and it has nothing to do with race, we all are losing some more than others.  Holla Back!

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2 Responses to “Giving Back to Your Community…”

  1. You make some good points, here in Dayton it’s the same thing, a community in peril. Ohio has the nation’s highest unemployment rate, the city schools rank the worst in the state, crime rates are through the roof and while last year Oakland ranked 3 (highest crime rates) Dayton ranked 20. Those statistics are alarming, but this is the result of a systematic failure and the breakdown of the family structures, drugs and poorly staffed and funded educational systems etc…These are problems that have been brewing for years and er haven’t seen the worst of it. You know, I was an average student, Mom never worked, absent father, low ranked school, lived in subsidized housing, free lunches, financial aid etc…Those are the negatives, there are plenty of positives but I say that to say this…Because I decided to pursure a post secondary education, i’m now 50,000 in debt, I still haven’t graduated because i’m trying to work my loans out of default but that’s a diff story. I sat down and tried to understand the reality of the matter in terms ov economic and educational advantages and disadvantages and how my socioeconomic status played into my current situation.Now I can’t blame anyone for my not having a degree, but I do believe I was born into a system of generational poverty that makes it difficult even now to erase a mode of thinking to try to get myself to at least level playing ground with my peers. And you’re right it’s not really about being black, it’s about poverty and all that comes along. I’m gonna make it because I go hard but it definitly has been a struggle. Good post

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