“We Are One Power Conference 2009”
Speech Outline & Draft
–Define “Culture” (Dictionary & Ideological)
–Karenga’s two (2) types of culture (‘popular’ and “national’)
–Lisa’s third (3rd) type of culture (traditional)
–“Adaptive vitality” vs adapting to the dominant culture
–Typical societies have Upper, Middle, and Lower classes
–Roles played by each class
–Absence of a correspondent to the ‘Middle’ class among Nationalist Blacks
–Compare to a football metaphor
–Karenga’s premise re: the Key crisis in Black life being the Cultural crisis
–Explain “crisis in views and values”
–Amos Wilson on Culture
Webster’s 7th New Collegiate Dictionary Definition: “The act of developing the intellectual and moral faculties especially by education; expert care and training; enlightenment and excellence of taste acquired by intellectual and aesthetic training; a particular stage of advancement in civilization; the characteristic features of such a stage or state; behavior typical of group or class.”
Wikipedia Free Encyclopedia Definition: “An integrated pattern of human knowledge, belief, and behavior that depends on the capacity for symbolic thought and social learning; the set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices that characterizes an institution, organization, or group.”
“Fulfillment of national aspirations or ideals; encompassing all human phenomena that are not purely results of human genetics; the evolved human capacity to classify and represent experiences with symbols and to act imaginatively and creatively; the distinct ways that people living in different parts of the world classified and represented their experiences, and acted creatively.”
Karenga’s Kawaida Theory Definition: “…all the thought and activity of a given people or society; places stress on the ideological – i.e.; the view and value dimension of social life which informs social practice.” …..
“The vision crisis is defined by a deficient and ineffective grasp of self, society and the world, and the value crisis by incorrect and self-limiting categories of commitment, and priorities which in turn limit our human possibilities.”
Dr. Amos Wilson, in his powerful work: “Blueprint for Black Power,” expands on the fundamental premise posited by Dr. Karenga.
About twelve years ago the Jewish lobby in Florida persuaded our State Legislature to make the teaching of “Holocaust Studies” mandatory in all public schools. The parasite element among Blacks immediately attached themselves to that Jewish initiative and succeeded in getting the legislature to include the study of African and African-American History in the proposed bill. Note the difference however: Jews insisted on having their Holocaust studied in all public schools; Integrationist/Assimilationist Negros asked to have the whole of Black folks’ history included. The object of the Jews was clear; they were not interested in merely having non-Jews study Jewish history, rather, they were determined to make certain that no one would be allowed to forget or never learn of the abuses suffered by Jews at the hands of the Nazis! Jews were interested in the effect of exposing others to the horrors they had suffered, and the use of graphic illustrations was integral to their strategy. It is virtually impossible to be human and not have your stomach turned at the sight of emaciated bodies with hollowed eyes and cheeks, or to see stacks of skeletons still covered with skin being bulldozed into mass graves or thrown into massive furnaces. As a result, even non-Jews joined in the chorus of “Never Again!”
Jews understood that the same people whose indifference to the plight of Jews made the genocide attempted against them possible would not be responsive to an appeal for them to study Jewish history. Learning their history and its lessons was important for Jews to do if they were to avoid a repetition of being victims of “man’s inhumanity to his fellow-man.” Jews shrewdly played on the emotions of White folks, and made them take on a collective sense of guilt for having caused or allowed the travesty to occur.
By contrast, Blacks who attached their cause to that of the Jews, sought to interest non-Blacks in learning about our history, even though Blacks themselves knew little about their own history, and understood its lessons even less! While their intentions might have been good, their strategy was severely flawed. Jews have always taken it upon themselves to teach their children who they are and from whence they came, and seldom do Jewish children attend public or other non-Jewish schools during their “formative” years – from birth to early teens. Furthermore, Jews have always financed the education of their own children so they could be free to teach them as they saw fit. Blacks on the other hand, can hardly wait to push our children into the clutches of others, and then complain mightily when the inevitable results. This would be tantamount to antelope voluntarily turning their young over to lions to be ‘taught’ how to be good antelope; lions eat antelope – the young of which make the most tender, tastiest, and easiest meal!
The Jewish strategy has worked, while the Black Assimilationists’ approach has failed miserably!Holocaust studies are being taught in virtually all public schools in Florida, while few districts or schools have elected to offer African and African-American History. I maintain that Blacks should have insisted that the horrors inflicted on Africans as part of the slave conversion process be studied in all public schools, complete with graphic illustrations of lynchings, “quartering,” cutting babies out of the Black mother’s stomach, and the like. The books “100 Years of Lynchings” and “Without Sanctuary” should have been made “required reading” in all public schools! Simultaneously, Blacks should have taken on the responsibility of teaching our history to our own children, and financed such instruction as well – just as Jews and Catholics have done!
On the first anniversary of their success in infusing Holocaust Studies into public school curriculum in Palm Beach County, Jewish leaders held a social event to celebrate its successful implementation. My colleague Bettye Dawson, who’d retired as an Assistant Principal in Palm Beach County’s school system, accompanied me to the occasion. There was one other Black woman seated at our table, and seven Whites – Jews and non-Jews.
During the usual ice-breaking chit-chat that occurs at such gatherings, folks gave bits of background about themselves and what their interest was in attending the program. Mrs. Dawson explained that she and I had secured a charter to operate a public school, and that we used an African-centered theme. She deferred to me to explain what she meant by “African-centered” because she was at that time new to the concept herself.
When I mentioned that we taught our children within the context of their history, culture, and heritage – much as the Jews do, a very nice Jewish lady was appalled; she accused me of misleading our Black children by comparing their situation to that of the Jews. After all, she opined, Jews have a culture upon which to build students’ self-esteem. Blacks on the other hand, have no culture, so it was inappropriate for me to give our children “false hope” that they could “imitate” or replicate the success of Jews!!
Before I could respond, the Black Sister who had sat demurely throughout the discourse, exploded in a fit of rage! How dare the Jewish woman to assert that Blacks have no culture!! It was all Mrs. Dawson and I could do to restrain that Sister, and she stormed out of the venue. I don’t know whatever became of that lady, and ‘she’ll never know that she was my hero’ on that occasion.
What is this “culture” that the Jewish lady insisted Jews have but Blacks do not? Let’s consider several definitions: Webster’s 7th New Collegiate Dictionary sums up the definition of “culture”as: “…behavior typical of a group or class.” The Wikipedia Free Encyclopedia sums it up as: “… the set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices that characterizes an institution, organization, or group.” This source goes on to explain culture as: “… the distinct ways that people living in different parts of the world classified and represented their experiences, and acted creatively.”
In his book “Kawaida Theory,” Dr. Maulana Karenga, creator of the “Nguzo Saba” and the African-American holiday “Kwanzaa,” defines “culture” as “…all the thought and activity of a given people or society, but places stress on the ideological – i.e.; the view and value dimension of social life which informs social practice.”Dr. Karenga maintains that “The key crisis in Black life is the cultural crisis, i.e.; the crisis in views and values.”
In his celebrated work: “Blueprint for Black Power,” Dr. Amos Wilson expands on the essential points made by Dr. Karenga, and in much greater detail. Kawaida Theory is out of print, but Blueprint for Black Power is readily available, and I urge those of you in the audience who are serious about solving the problems faced by Black people, to study Dr. Wilson’s blueprint, especially chapters 3, 4 & 5 (pgs. 56 – 108). Webster’s defines “blue print” as “a program of action,” and if we were to seriously study and implement Dr. Wilson’s proposals we would become an action-oriented people indeed!
Perhaps Dr. Mayfield, George Fraser, and the deBrianos can anchor a movement in this direction by underwriting the costs of establishing a “Dr. Amos N. Wilson Institute,” a “think-tank” to employ the services of the most brilliant African-centered minds in the African diaspora! Imagine, if you can wrap your mind around the thought, all of our racially conscious thinkers, scholars, and theoreticians working together under the aegis of a single institution financed primarily by what could be defined as “Conscious Capitalists” as inferred by my colleague Jim Clingman in his article titled” “The Conundrum of Consciousness and Capital.” What wonders might ensue when the likes of Maulana Karenga, Molefi Asante, Wade Nobles, Frances Cress-Welsing, Tony Martin, and Na’im Akbar, to name a few, conjoin their brilliant minds and efforts to do for Africans collectively what the most influential white think-tanks have done and are doing for white America and their interests? If we had the presence of mind and the will to establish such an institution… and finance it, we could entice those Brothers and Sisters, and other scholars equally as possessed of genius but less well known to the general Black public, to leave the employ of America’s white institutions of higher learning and come home to devote their services to the uplift and advancement of their own people! If these four conscious millionaires take the lead in this direction, would not the likes of Dr. Walter Lomax, Kenny Gamble, Mr. & Mrs. Dudley, real estate developer John Brown, and others not personally known to me, find it difficult not to follow suit and lend their resources and resourcefulness to such a noble cause? Leadership and role-modeling are called for in this critical regard.
I founded the Joseph Littles-NGUZO SABA Charter School (JL-NSCS) on the bedrock contention that NO “SLAVES” WERE EVER BROUGHT TO AMERICA;” rather, that HUMAN BEINGS were captured in various parts of Africa, transported across the Atlantic Ocean, and sold into bondage for the purpose of expropriating their labor for the economic advantage of European “business persons” and their penchant for making profit. Those African ancestors of ours did not become “slaves” simply by virtue of being forced to yield their labor without just compensation, nor by being forced to “sing the songs of Zion in a foreign land;” they did not jump off the boat and immediately start calling the European “massa!” To turn a human being into a slave requires a “process,” and a process by definition requires a span of time for completion. The process of “converting” our Ancestors into the creature called slave extended over a period of sixty to eighty years, and some of the most gruesome schemes and devices in the annals of human history were used by the slave-makers in carrying out their dastardly enterprise.
The period during which Africans were converted into, and forced to function as slaves, i.e.; chattel property ‘owned’ by another supposed “human,” has been referred to by some African-centered scholars as the “MAAFA,” or the African counterpart to the Jews’ Holocaust. While the Jews’ Holocaust was conducted over a period of only twelve (12) years (1933 to 1945), we have had to endure our Maafa from approximately 1555 to (for many among us) the present! White “conservatives” who are the modern day equivalent of the overt racists of past generations, whether affiliated with the Republican or Democratic parties, would have the world believe that Africans were “done a favor” by the Europeans who forcibly brought us to this land starting in the 16th century; that those “benefactors” introduced our Ancestors to “civilization” by virtue of their process of converting us into slaves. This approach to “civilizing” non-white people continues to this day under the guise of “democratizing” non-white populations the world over, ostensibly imposing a European form of “freedom” on them, while appropriating their lands and resources for themselves. With “friends and benefactors” such as the American and European governments, who needs “enemies?”
The process used to convert Africans into slaves was conceived, formulated, implemented, and conducted by design. Its effects have never been reversed. By that I mean no subsequent process has ever been designed and implemented for the express purpose of undoing the damage done to our collective psyche by that initial process. Blacks in America have attempted to undo the effects of our enslavement, but most often by events; I contend that it is impossible to reverse or even counter the effects resulting from a process — by one, or a series of events; only a viable process can accomplish such a feat, and that process would have to be as well and effectively conceived, formulated, implemented, and conducted – as the former, the effects of which the latter is intended to undo and reverse. This weekend’s “We Are One Power Conference 2009” could and should prove to be the genesis of such a critically needed process, and Dr. Mayfield and Brother Yusuff Muhammad are to be commended for bringing all of us together. Hopefully, we will prove ourselves to be equal to the task at hand. That would require however, that we here do not ourselves fall prey to the proclivity of treating this gathering as just another event to help us feel better momentarily.
All of us here are familiar with the “Infamous Willie Lynch Letter” and its claims as to how the slave makers carried out and sustained their scheme to keep captured Africans in bondage. You might not all be as familiar with another document which went into even greater detail to illustrate ways that the scheme was carried out; that document, titled “64 Years to Make a Negro,” highlighted some of the more gruesome procedures used to subdue our Ancestors. Let there be no doubt that the goal of that despicable process was to de-humanize the African captives, and to do so by any and every effective means conceivable! While it was routine for the slave makers to inflict great pain on the Africans’ bodies, the objective was to cause a lasting effect on their minds. Human bodies are instruments, tools or vehicles to be utilized by the human mind to conduct its affairs in this plane of existence. When the mind which has been assigned a body to do its bidding is itself brought under control of a force outside that body, that beleaguered mind can be forced to use “its” assigned body to do the bidding of the external force. This is my way of illustrating the fact that it is the human being’s mind that must be persuaded to accept the subservient status of a slave; the body is then obliged to go along with the program until such time as it is physically broken down, crippled, or destroyed.
To facilitate the process of enslaving the African, his mind had to be divested of those traits and attributes that constitute one’s humanity. Everything natural had to be made unnatural; everything normal had to be made abnormal. Most importantly, the African’s concept of himself had to be destroyed, and replaced with the mentality of a slave, an entirely different creature! His historic memory had to be obliterated, and along with it, any semblance of a cultural heritage or identity. Whereas he had been “…created in the image and likeness of (his) God,” he was ‘broken’ and his mental ‘pieces’ put back together in the form desired by his destroyer. A broken man, a broken woman, makes for a broken people. Without ‘unbroken’ adults to protect them and guide their growth and development, the progeny become ‘grist’ for the slave maker’s economic grinding-mill. That is why the mythical “Willie Lynch” could predict that “…if installed correctly,” his method for controlling black slaves would “…control the slave for at least 300 years.”
The natural culture of the African brought forcibly to the Americas was “rent-asunder” by the slave-making process. As a result African-Americans suffer from what Dr. Karenga defines as a “…crisis in views and values.” He states that the vision crisis is “…defined by an ineffective grasp of self, society, and the world;” and the value crisis by “…incorrect and self-limiting categories of commitment, and priorities which in turn limit our human possibilities.” This crisis in views and values contributes to what Dr. Karenga describes as a “popular culture.” He maintains that “…it is the fact that Blacks have a popular culture rather than a national culture which stands at the heart of the cultural crisis they suffer.” He defines ‘popular’ culture as “…the unconscious, fluid reaction to everyday life and environment…; social thought and practice defined and limited by its unconsciousness, fluidity and reactiveness.” In contrast to that, he defines ‘national’ culture as “…the self-conscious, collective thought and practice thru which a people creates itself, celebrates itself, and introduces itself to history and humanity.”
Dr. Karenga highlights several basic negatives of ‘popular’ culture, and proposes correctives for each, to wit: high-level of reactiveness rather than pro-activeness – the need is for orientation toward self-conscious development rather than ad hoc defense;
high-level of lumpenism – hustler values permeate Black popular culture, i.e.; emphasis on quick money at any cost, heavy sex, conning, getting’ over. The need is for values which stress discipline, development and mutual respect;
high-level of simple survival orientation – cockroach existence, just getting by, making it and nothing more. Again, the key is development. For simple survival eventually leads to stagnation, but inherent in the concept and practice of development is the assumption and insurance of survival and growth;
high-level of present-time orientation – this is engendered by the vulnerability of an oppressed people, and the uncertainty felt about the future and fear of not being around to enjoy things beyond the immediate. This often leads to lack of will and daring to push possibilities to the limit, to acceptance of reality rather than daring to harness it and shape it in our own interests and image. The need is for discipline and long-term plans and investment;
over-emphasis on fun and games – Fanon observed the need for the oppressed to relax and release energy. Sports, dance and music and alienated sex are often used for this. But such an emphasis has gone so far that athletics and entertainment have become our most well-known activities as a people. The need again is for development and construction thru discipline and a national plan for such long-term and serious activity;
high-level of myth orientation and grandiose dreams – often shun the hard work of development and building for religious and social escapism and dreaming. The tendency to dream is not a negative in itself, but rather a positive, the source of all creativity. It must, however, be harnessed, disciplined, and given reality by practice to realize it. A dream may be positive or negative depending on: a) its motivation – build or escape, offer an alternative or avoid; b) its focus – for collective good or individualistic good; and c) content – source in reality, or rooted in sheer fantasy and grandiosity.
While clearly preferring that Blacks discard their popular culture in favor of a national one, Dr. Karenga concedes there are several positive aspects of the former, and cites Kwame Nkrumah’s sage counsel that “…we must love the people, study and learn the people, start with what they know and build on what they have.” He describes these positives as:
adaptive vitality – a continuing ability to adjust, to make do in the harshest circumstances. This is the positive side of the survival orientation; stagnation and submission are its negatives. The need is to stress the development aspect of adaptiveness rather than simply the defensive survival aspect;
strong emphasis on expressive values – love, care, affection, sensitivity. It keeps us in touch with our humanity; feeling becomes not only a way to know and understand thru empathy, but a way to distinguish us from the cold and empty-hearted robot men who oppress us. The need is for us to maintain and expand this positive;
durability – this is tied to adaptive vitality. We have demonstrated our capacity to endure and sustain ourselves in the hardest circumstances – legal and socially sanctioned slavery, physical lynchings, mob action, planned unemployment, racism and the rest. Again, the need is to join durability with development capacity;
humanism – Nkrumah noted that egalitarianism and humanism stand at the heart of African traditional society. It is this humanism which proved and proves to be both strength and weakness. As xenophilia and the unwarranted trust of strangers this implies, humanism can make us vulnerable. History proves this. But as an encouragement to positive relations with different peoples, full and free exchange of peoples and respect for the sanctity and unlimited possibility of the human personality, it is a positive and strength. Humanism is also a negative when it encourages rejection of one’s ethnic or national identity to escape to an easier abstract identity as human. Humanism starts with love for the humans to whom one owes one’s existence. Thus, what we do for ourselves in our struggle for liberation and a higher level of human life, we have at the same time done it for humanity;
creativity – the capacity to take little or nothing and make something of it. To take mute matter and give it form and feeling, voice and value. The problem is that our creativity is too heavily evidenced in entertainment, i.e.; popular music. It must be redirected to the multidimensional national thrust to create ourselves, celebrate ourselves, and introduce ourselves to history and humanity.
Dr. Karenga summarizes by stating that “…our struggle is not simply for food or other material necessities, but for liberation and a higher level of human life; and that necessitates a new system of views and values.” He calls for the creation of a “national vanguard” to “…intervene, draw from the grassroots richness of our popular culture and dare pose a national culture thru which we create, celebrate, and introduce ourselves to history and humanity.” Again, this “We Are One Power Conference 2009” has the inherent potential to launch what Dr. Karenga calls for in the form of a movement, and bring its goals and objectives to fruition.
Dr. Amos Wilson states that: “From their life experiences, a group develops a set of rules and procedures for meeting their needs. The set of rules and procedures, together with a supporting set of ideas and values, is called a culture.” “Culture provides standards for proper cognitive, emotional, and behavioral conduct; a set of proverbial precepts as to what reality is, and an accompanying set of rationalizations or ostensible explanations for its nature and purpose.” While essentially ideological in nature based on shared beliefs, customs, expectations, and values, “Culture constructs definitions, meanings, and purposes. These cultural constructs are used to proactively and reactively mold the mind, body, spirit and behavior of the constituent members of a culture.” “Culture is represented symbolically and operationally in the minds and characteristically mental/behavioral orientation or styles of its members, and is incarnated in the customary ways they move and use their bodies.” It “…expresses itself through the systematic ways they attend, experience, categorize, classify, order, judge, evaluate, explain and interact with their world.” “Culture patterns the ways its members perceive each other, relate to and interact with each other. It facilitates the ways they create, develop, organize, institutionalize and behaviorally apply their human potential in order to adapt to the conditions under which they live so as to satisfy their psychological, social and survival needs.”
“A culture is socially manufactured, and some of the most important social products it generates include its own cultural identity, and the social and personal identities of its constituent group and individual members.”
In Dr. Wilson’s view, “The cultural identity of a group is the social product of a socialization process, a process in which new responses, values, perspectives and orientations are acquired and existing behavioral repertoires of the group are modified to some extent, as the result of its subjection to direct or indirect social conditioning experiences. Cultural identity also results from the patterning of its modal thoughts, feelings, or actions after other cultures or groups who serve as models.” “The socialization of a subordinate culture involves the inculcation of its young with values and attitudes that serve to perpetuate the dominant social system. Socialization, broadly defined, is the process by which a subordinate culture learns the ways a given social group (the dominant culture) and is molded into an effective participant.” This socialization process is facilitated by another process called “identification;” a process by which the subordinate Black culture becomes or behaves like the dominant white culture, or as the dominant culture expects them to. “The dominant culture, normally in control of the resources, dispenses them according to the desirability of the behavior performed by (members of) the subordinate culture.” Thus it is that the dominant white culture decides what roles it values for the subordinate Black culture, and rewards those members of the latter group that willingly play such roles with handsome rewards both materially and socially.
Because virtually all Black children attend public schools controlled and funded by the dominant white culture, they are routinely and persistently conditioned (socialized) to play roles that serve the interests of the dominant culture. Our “best and brightest” academically do everything they can to earn entrance to the best white universities; and our “blue-chip” athletes all yearn to play their sport in Division I (white) athletic programs. The dominant white culture gets the best of what both races are able to produce in the way of talented and skilled persons; Black culture has been obliged to settle for the “left-overs.” As a result, the achievement gap between the two races expands exponentially, leaving our own children to shun everything associated with being Black and of African descent. Race-pride among Blacks has become a thing of the past except for a relatively few “die-hards” as represented by those in attendance here this week-end.
We MUST do something to stop the hemorrhaging, but what?!
For me the answer is simple: We MUST reclaim responsibility for the effective and proper education and development of our children, including the primary financing thereof! Our children must be shown that responsible, conscious Black adults have not abandoned them to the vagaries and vicissitudes of the system that converted their forebears into slaves and is planning a similar fate for them. WE must alert them to the “prison/jail/military/industrial complex” that is the vanguard for a “new world order,” an order that does not value any contributions they have to make except to entertain the powers-that-be among the dominant culture. Our children who are engaging in various forms of misbehavior must be made to understand that they are helping to justify the construction of larger and more secure prisons, and their privatization. We must let them know that the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution did not abolish slavery in all aspects; that conviction of a crime is grounds for internment as a modern-day slave.
From July 15th through August 12, 2009 I took it upon myself to demonstrate support for the proper education and development of our children by walking from West Palm Beach, Florida to Washington, DC – a journey of 1,069 miles. With the support of a “surrogate walker,” I averaged 30 to 35 miles per day in completing the trek. I sought to challenge conscious Black adults to demonstrate willingness to revive their sense of responsibility to restore our children’s right to a childhood; and to raise their level of awareness of the critical need for African-centered education as being the most effective means of restoring an adequate, realistic self-image to Black children who have for too long been under mental and emotional siege. By making the trek a “walkathon” we sought to give our people an opportunity to prove by example that the African-American community can and would take responsibility for becoming the primary source of funding for the education and development of our children – just as our Jewish and Catholic counterparts have done. We are still waiting for that response to take place, and if any of you want to send in your contribution, you can do so by visiting our school’s web site at www.jlnscs.org. You can contribute via PayPal, or send a check or money order through the mail. If not you, WHO? If not now, WHEN? If not, WHY not?
No one questions the fact that Jewish and Catholic schools provide a more qualitative formal education than public schools; and no one questions the fact that Jewish and Catholic children learn best because their education is rooted in their respective heritage, history, and culture. It is only when we talk about children of African descent receiving an African-centered education that the question of “reverse racism” arises and pundits question the efficacy of such a pedagogical approach.
We “conscious” Blacks are in competition for the hearts and minds of our children. The “competition” is better organized and better financed than we are, and heretofore they have exhibited more resolve to win. But all is not yet lost; we can recover our bearings, regain our footing, and re-enter the fray! The question is, do we have the WILL to do what is required? As the scriptures say: “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few!” Are YOU ready to labor in this cause?
Though we conscious Blacks have ‘slept’ on the issue of public charter schools, and are ten years behind on that movement, there may still be an opportunity for us to involve ourselves and secure some of the charters that have not yet been claimed. However, we would have to move expeditiously in an organized, coherent manner. The charter school movement is very well organized as suggested by the strong vocal support given it by no less than President Barack Obama and his national education czar Arnie Duncan. Those who have gained control of that movement do not want or need support from Black folks, and will not take kindly to our incursion. However, they have and continue to use our children to promote and advance their cause, and we have a duty and responsibility to protect our youth. We need to make a concerted effort to secure as many charters to operate African-centered schools as we can at this stage. Any of you who might be interested can contact me at our school’s web site, www.jlnscs.org to get insight to how best to proceed in this regard. Charter schools do not offer us a panacea, but at least there is a measure of public money to underwrite a substantial portion of the overall costs of operating a school, money that is not readily available to us via tuition that would have to be paid by Black parents not accustomed to paying for their children’s education – whether they can afford to or not.
In addition to the educational advantages of having a charter to operate a public school, one also becomes an employer or no small consequence, and can circulate money into the Black community by purchasing services and supplies from Black vendors. In this way we can combine education with business and economic development. Public charter schools are here to stay, and they will affect our children whether we like it or not. We owe it to them to be where they are and tend to their needs. White folks are already doing that for their children; it is we who are coming up short! (37 minutes)
The Christian Bible advises readers to “Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind.” We can no longer allow our children’s tender minds to remain in the possession of our oppressors! Since at least 1555 our people have wandered in the wilderness of a land not of our choosing; but even that book promises that a remnant shall escape and come forth, and our people will see their way and their doing, and shall be comforted. Brothers and Sisters, I maintain that we here at this “We Are One Power Conference” are that remnant referred to in that holy book!! The Creator-Spirit of Africa has conscripted us into It’s service, and made promises to our people that they will be comforted when they see the ways in which WE will conduct ourselves and our affairs! They will know us by our WORKS, and the ‘trees’ of our efforts by the fruit they bear! We here are the instrument by which our Creator will “…bring them again to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and increase. And I shall set up shepherds over them which shall feed them; and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed…”
But IF you and I are to prove ourselves worthy of this celestial assignment, we must take heed of yet another scriptural injunction: “For I say unto you, that except your righteousness shall exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees, ye shall in no case enter the Kingdom of Heaven.” I interpret this to mean that unless we ‘Conscious’Blacks have greater spiritual conviction than the integrationists, assimilationists, and white folks, we cannot and will not succeed! After all: “Ye are the salt of the earth; but if the salt has lost its savour, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and be trodden under foot of men.”
“Of he (or she) to whom much is given, much is required”
Brothers and Sisters; and we here have been given the Keys to the Kingdom; Let’s start opening doors!!!