Do me a favor black America – THINK FOR YOURSELF!

Writing this is therapy for me. And I am DOWN (meaning, I am supportive of) Bill Cosby! .But I think we all need to take the dialogue a little further. And I DON’T care what you think about me (in saying this). This is not about me, nor is it meant to be some sort of pseudo popularity contest. This is passionately about "we," and most of all, it’s about giving you the tools to THINK FOR YOURSELF.

Respectfully, I don’t want you to think like the Reverend Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, my shero Dr. Dorothy Height or even my hero Ambassador Andrew Young, or even me for that matter – unless you have considered for yourself, their and my positions, and opinions, and thereafter made a determination — on your own, to make their views your views.

Ladies and gentlemen, racism, discrimination and “the white man” even, are not the main threats in our communities anymore. Apathy is. And apathy kills.

Love and hate are opposite emotions, but at least they move in a direction. Apathy just lies there, saying nothing. Doing nothing. Love and hate are opposite emotions, but indifference is the death nail of the soul.

I have always said that gated communities are absolute proof that America has effectively lost the first phase on the war on poverty. That mainstream America has effectively thrown in the towel and thrown up its collective hands; coming to the conclusion that it simply cannot solve the complex web of problems that lie beneath endemic urban poverty. Fine. Yea, …FINE. It’s not their problem anyway. It is ours. Not to worry, America will be back.

They will be back precisely when we stop being seen, and more importantly seeing ourselves, as a liability, and start behaving and looking like the assets we are! In other parts of the world they call this phenomena “emerging markets,” and they are all getting more than their fair share of attention, from all those who now want to be their newest and best friend. So yes, America will be back. But the real question is, are we ready?

Can we, well, heal ourselves? While touring the Anacostia area of Washington, D.C. last year with then local Councilman and friend Kevin Chavous, I asked the seasoned councilman what was the number one problem in his district. His response – apathy. That people had just given up hope. Or as I like to say, “their get up and go, had just got up and went.”

We have got to get our lives together, our HOPE back, our spirits back in intact, our respective rear-ends engaged in positive, productive activities, and our MINDS FOCUSED ON THINKING FOR OURSELVES.

And YES, I said it! Someone had too.

Onward, with HOPE

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