I cannot but think on our African American forefathers who have long time come and gone, not by consent, but by constraint. Who left behind very few tangible possessions as a legacy or inheritance, but great levels of hope for the future. Reverend Joseph Lowery, when interviewed on TBN declared most recently the progress we have made, but also the mountains we have yet to push down. He also pointed out the degree of regression made as pertaining to our young people. Hastily my mind reflected a proclamation of Dr. Martin Luther King – I have a dream that one day my four little children will live in a nation where they will no longer be judged by the color of their skin but by the contents of their character. God our Father, has brought us across many great rivers, but as a citizen, I agree with Rev. Lowery, we have great mountains to tear down. We have a right to celebrate our heritage, for what the halls of congress declared would never manifest in this country has happened. Not because a man alone said it but because God had declared that the first shall be last and the last shall be first! He cannot lie!
We had been programmed to believe God gave us nothing, to very little, to bring to the table of social culture. But we, African American descendants, are most innovative and resilient. We have always known how to survive under great pressure. We took scraps and built upon them; for we had respect for the “little”, in that we despised it not. My grandfather would always tell us that a poor man had nothing to waste. We were drilled to hate the bondage that was forced upon us, but to gaze through the window of hope. I contend with the theory to a degree that poverty breeds slum: for, in many cases, what has given rise to poverty is not a lack of opportunity, but a lack of self-motivation and inspiration to move forward.
The Word of God speaks of a man who kills an ox and sits allowing it to rot before he stands to prepare it. It speaks of the man who has chosen to sleep and twiddle his thumbs, doing nothing and finds himself in need. It (Proverbs) speaks of the procrastinator who is always going to do, yet never does. As a mother, grandmother, pastor, and ordinary citizen I often search out the ball, when it was dropped. Where did it roll? Every human in America who works and pays taxes contributes to the aid of the poor and needy who are in the system. It is designed to strengthen weak links, to offer a hand for those who are struggling. But it saddens many of us who watch those who sit on the front porch watching as the employed drive by; for it is the tax payers who afford them social assistance. Section Eight affords them housing, where in time it began to look like the hood they left behind. The absence of integrity and self-worth deprives them of better. Our grandparents could have only desired the luxury of such a temporary boost; while they continued to gaze through the window of hope in their day; for many it was a step down to depend on social services.
Many are asking what would Dr. King say to this generation??? Let’s meet here another day! Join me at the downtown library for the local Authors’ Book Fair and Expo. (9 a.m. ‘til 3 p.m.), Saturday February 1!