My community is going to hell in a handbag.
There are screams to oust the mayor, oust the school board, rage against the machine but I do not agree.
Having been born and raised here in Chicago, with the pride of the South Side bred into my soul, I disagree because it is not up to any of these people whether our community rises or falls.
The power is in us to succeed. The black community rose to be a vibrant beacon, a bastion of hope and glory during the deepest civil unrest of our times. I fear we spend so much time demanding people care about our issues more than we do, that we are being lost in translation, so to speak, while immigrants, students and the Mid-East hit the ground to do the work and are accountable for their rise in stature.
Our community is now idle, happy to be fashionistas and stale movie-makers. I fear we will soon be entirely obsolete. The youth, our future, is being misguided and silenced by the cartel who is skillfully luring them with pocket change and gym shoes. They have little desire to shine academically, be relevant or desire to be on a board to be a true voice, not a whine in front of a television crew. These "whiners" are quite happy to scream and call folks names at marches but not demand anything substantial of people, or move into positions of real power by taking action, not crying for someone else to do it.
The young lights that we do have shining are being gunned down in huge numbers, caught in the cross-fire of lame, soulless creatures.
The parents of these monsters, and uber liberal social working types, continue defending their actions, housing these blood-letting offspring, and building list after list of reasons why poor Bobby is a banger. Yes, being part of the problem, instead of freeing us from old stigma. Bobby doesn't need to be a banger, Bobby chooses to be a banger. It is as simple as that. The battle is WHY Bobby thinks banging is more attractive than living an honest, respectful life. Third World children want books, our kids want gym shoes ... really?
This is not an easy battle. We have social ills against us and huge drop-out rates, but my father, whom I celebrated yesterday, and am SO very lucky to still have on this earth, reminds me every day that his generation did it while being labeled half a man. We have status, we have people in high places, we have a voice - we just have to put the perspective in the right place and salvage what dignity remains and succeed.