I have a question for the audience. It’s 2010. We’re going into 2011. Despite numerous obstacles we’re here. We have accumulated more wealth, fame and accolades than at any time in modern history. Individuals have made extraordinary gains but the masses are languishing on a myriad of fronts. Much of it is self-created turmoil, which many have taken to defend.
WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE?
We are at a crossroads. Many people have noticed the shift in society but haven’t been able to articulate it. They feel as if things are spinning out of control and want to reassert some order. Overreacting can cause people to misidentify the wrong instigators. When broaching difficult subject matter some people would revert back to behavior commonly used by children. Avoiding the required discernment and undertaking that first step in analysis will motivate some to come up with the most peculiar responses. I also suspect that internally many people are well aware of mass dysfunctional activity but think if they continue to deny it something will change on its own.
WISHFUL THINKING + DENIAL = OBSOLETION
While this behavior applies across the board to all groups blacks can least afford to engage in such “luxury”. Overindulgence in processed food will lead to weight gain. Overindulgence in spending without adequate resources will leave you in debt. Overindulgence in playtime instead of studying will have you falling behind in school. Overindulgence in apathy will lead to destruction.
So will allowing outside influence from those who care nothing about your survival. One cannot move forward as a people when a majority is maimed, distracted or occupied building up some other people’s resources. Individuals cannot thrive when they’re utilizing all of their capital trying to keep the group above water. It’s also useless when people are kicking and screaming about facing reality every day – and cursing you for ever mentioning it.
If it comes down to you trying to work within the group and spinning your wheels versus separating and soaring the choice is clear. While progress is an individual manifestation that relies on the direct efforts of a focused person, being held back to stay part of the pack requires little. All you have to do is remain still and be silent.
MOST OF THE PASSENGERS ON THE TITANIC PERISHED BECAUSE THEY DIDN’T GET ON THE LIFEBOATS IN TIME.
While some people discussed whether the ship had been hit by an iceberg other passengers made plans. While some claimed the ship was unsinkable others weren’t willing to take that chance. When they tried to talk others out of getting off the boat, “Gee the water sure looks cold” smart folks got busy. As some urged each other to wait a little while longer (for daylight or whatever) others decided not to.
Fence-sitters are worse than direct opposers because appearing to be supportive disarms people. Obstructionists can easily reveal their true motives by consistently shifting the conversation in circles and looking for “gotcha” moments to discredit the views of those they disagree with. Outsiders who insert themselves into private conversations (whether they were invited or not) should not be trusted to have the best interest of others in mind.
One way to undermine another person’s progress is to cheerlead them…off a cliff and pretend to have no idea it was happening. I’ve observed the contentious conversations regarding addressing the increasing OOW (out of wedlock) birth rate in the black community. It’s the same response when addressing all the other negative trends where avoidance, denial and misdirection of the results of compounded non-beneficial behavior has exploded out of control. The last CDC report was published in 2006. I shudder to think what the increase will show when the next report is published in 2011. What will be the excuses proffered by the naysayers then?
Avoiding corrective behavior does nothing but add gasoline to a fire. This is beyond religion, beyond government intervention and beyond waiting. It has nothing to do with historical external obstruction or being a descendant of an oppressed person – particularly since we are the survivors of people who fought to free themselves from it.
How does one explain having an increasing majority members of your group being worse off morally, intellectually, ethically and financially when the opportunities for thriving are more readily available than ever? It stands in such stark contrast to see a few high-profile individuals appear to be thriving when its the opposite for the masses. Especially considering how other groups work hard at preserving minimum standards for their collectives. How is it that those who want to conquer these internal battles are publicly being chided? Why is it that we have to let it to be known some of us want more and are different from the pack so as not to be included as part of the mass hysteria? Even more distressing are those who do not care whether their group thrives want to see the suffering and demise of others so they get to be the last ones standing!
These are the questions many are afraid to fully examine – let alone provide solutions for. Humor has its place in diffusing charged emotions but this is no laughing matter. Besides change requires a serious focus and a lot of work not fun and games. Until we are willing to move towards spiritual and ethical realignment many will continue to drive the bus missing a few wheels. That only gets you but so far.