Once again the Season of Thanksgiving is here and we have much to be thankful for. So I have listed a few things that we should add to our lists, as people who find ourselves in bad economic times with an African American President.
At the top of the list should be to thank God for our young President and continue to bless him with wisdom and knowledge to do what is right and good within the unlimited boundaries of God's will. We need to pray for him because there are evil forces who, in God's name, are praying for his demise. The so-called "Conservative Christian Evangelicals" have outdone themselves in proving that they are anything but Christ-like. They, in their zeal to overshadow President Barack Obama, are selling t-shirts and other paraphernalia that say, "Pray for President Obama according to Psalms 108:8." Psalms 108:8-10 says, "Let his days be few; and let another take his office". The context is further explained by looking at verses 9 and 10, that say, "Let his children be fatherless, and his wife a widow. Let his children be continually vagabonds, and beg . . ."
In this season of Thanksgiving it is the duty of all Americans, in general, and Black Americans, in particular, to once again teach the world how to love. We love President Barack Obama and we claim to love America, therefore, we should pray for his success, knowing that our success is inextricably tied to his success. And then, because it is the Christian way, we should pray for those who think and talk of killing him will accomplish something that benefits anything but their hate.
Everyday, we awake to some new reminder that we as African Americans are at the bottom of the economic barrel. Two questions arise: "Why?" and "What can we do about it?"
The why is answered by recent analysis: 1) our opportunities, or lack thereof; and, 2) who or what is keeping us there?
At the top of the list is what people are calling the "extra ordinary" incarceration rates of young black males. Words like suspicion, distrust, poverty, secrecy, evasion and unpredictable now describe Black communities, instead of hope, promise and rising. We are now a community of suspects and fugitives, unfortunately. One statistic demonstrates that 35% of young black males under forty years of age who are high school drop-outs are somehow connected to the penal system. How sad. Any day a person can be told they failed to provide something required of the penal system. If it is lacking, they can be sent back to jail. This amount of unpredictability keeps them unemployed and unpredictable. They are familiar with emergency rooms and police stations, not as careers but participating clients.
How do we turn it around? This is being written at Thanksgiving, two days after Black male Judge, David Cunningham, II of Los Angeles, was arrested and handcuffed at UCLA for having no seat belt on. I note: that Judge Cunningham was once president of the Los Angeles Police Commission. So what these days! He is Black and profiled.
Turning it around is made difficult when White authorities see the penal system and themselves as there to become American's way of handling the problem of Black poverty. The traditional remedies are still there - education, no drug, no crime, and no parole. The problem is that the authorities with mandatory sentencing and punishment laws, and lack of adequate medical care, all are designed to keep us in check.
When you add loose parenting and loose school achievement rules, there is no way to go but down. The despair is spelled out in and article about "The American Police State," by sociologist Alice Goffman.
This Thanksgiving season we pray that parents will recommit themselves to turning it around. One house, one block, and one city at a time.