A couple great minds over the past year have been reinforcing the necessity of knowledge of self to me. And not the cool packaged kind for $19.95, or whatever–no, real knowledge of self. The kind that only develops after innumerable hours of researching, dialogue, and reflection. These great minds took the time to remind me that other avenues taken in the interest of liberation have not worked, and are simply not the answers. And yet, these are the same avenues we continue to push for. Why?
Most teachers and leaders offer no truly sensible solutions, no new information, and no direction. The same propaganda has been promulgated for decades but has yet to bring about that highly sought after change. Followers are encouraged to listen, buy products and lend their support, yet they fail to help cultivate the seeds of critical thinking and objective analysis that lie dormant in most of our minds–rendering our conversations fruitless and actions futile at our own expense. Which in itself should make you question whose interests they are really serving.
The change that many of us are looking for cannot be made within this current system. It is against its very nature. This system is not one that respects humanity, it dehumanizes and devalues. Our worth is measured by what we have, not who we are. The solutions will come once we all achieve the same level of understanding of what it is we’re dealing with. Change has to be initiated from within each of us. But, we all have to collectively define what change that is–undefined goals are counterproductive. Until then, we will be trapped in this vicious cycle for generations to come.
End senseless violence. Too many young and innocent lives are being lost at the hands of misguided individuals and cowards. If anything, take your aggression out on those that really need to be eradicated from society like rapists, child molestors, and all forms of abusers – be they animal, men, women, and/or children.
This clip was borrowed from WorldStarHipHop’s “The Field” documentary set in Chicago. This particular scene gives viewers a first-hand look at the “Got Bars?” program and the role it plays in the southside Chicago area. Sponsored by Kanye West’s non-profit organization Donda’s House, “Got Bars?” serves as a safe haven for the youth of Chicago to get away from the negativity that is haunting their communities. It also serves as an outlet for the at-risk youth to come perfect their craft with legendary hip-hop MC Rhymefest, a Chicago native himself. A positive environment is absolutely essential for at-risk youth in urban communities. Initiatives like this are only one of many that the people can use to bring light into the darkness that surrounds them and their childrens’ day-to-day lives. I’d also like to point out one other thing…did anyone else pick up on the lyrics the young man was saying? Those type of lyrics are what many would classify as “gangsta rap” due to the graphic violence, hatefulness, and other references. However, once he finished his verse, did you listen to his story? Both of his parents and his brother were killed. He literally got choked up and had to fight back tears when talking about it. This is the struggle many youth have to endure. Yes, even in America. Some of you may live in these kinds of places yourselves or maybe you live a few blocks away or on the other side of town. This is reality. Many of these children have no concept of what love is. Look where they live. Listen to their stories. Rather than cast dirty looks at people like him or insult them try to understand where they’re coming from. Put yourself in their shoes.