The Black Leaders Must be Accountable to Black People – 6/7/2017

I have come to an understanding and position in my life that either Black leaders believe in the liberation of Black people or they don’t. Based on the actions of so many leaders (or the lack of action), I must mathematically conclude that many Black leaders don’t fully embrace the liberation of Black people and, therefore, do not see themselves as accountable to the Black community. This is totally unacceptable because if the Black leaders don’t take this issue seriously and stake their lives on this issue, then who will? The Black community cannot lead themselves out of the mess that we were born into and so rely on Black leadership. Unfortunately, the Black leaders are totally unaware or naïve as to their role and responsibility to the masses of Black people.

If you were to take a look at what is going on in this country, you would see that, given the social and economic carnage and the structural realities that allow that carnage to continually erode the fabric of the Black community, the Black family, and the Black child for generations to come with absolutely no defense in sight, you would see that there is no sense of urgency or movement toward correcting these issues. Sure, there are some Black leaders who are working on what I call “low hanging fruit,” small, inconsequential issues that give us justification for our purpose, but won’t move the needle.

The problem with our Black leadership is that, not only is there no proper response or activity taking place, but there are few that even acknowledge the simple fact that the right response isn’t happening. It appears that we are just emotional and physically paralyzed. Because there is no real defense and liberation of the Black community through its Black leadership, I must conclude that Black leaders don’t believe in the liberation of Black people and this is a sad, sad reality for our community. You do the math.

I contend that it is no longer what “they” are doing to us. It is about what our Black leaders are not doing and it is up to them to figure this out. Sure, white America has its institutional foot on the necks of Black people, but at least they are not physically whipping us at the same time. We do have a little freedom to organize and figure out a way to get that foot off our neck, yet we are doing nothing. The number one priority of Black leaders should be creation of a critical mass of leadership that can work together to address our issues from a global (macro) level. This is not about the progress of a selected few Black people; this about the progress of 50 million Black people.

Sure, some of our leaders are working every day to address issues that are woefully despairing (i.e. workforce development, housing development, health care coverage, education disparities, etc.); the total of them representing the collective “foot on our neck.” These issues are just the symptoms and do not represent the core problems that Black people face in this country. Our leadership can address these issues for the next million years without fixing those issues that most impact the Black community – massive economic disparity coupled with the massive psychological hurt of Black inferiority.

Utilizing even the most liberal measures that one can, the Black community, as a whole, is at least 200 years behind economically and this gap cannot be narrowed by wishing or praying it away. It is impossible to close that gap without the Black leaders working together because most, if not all of our issues, are directly related to this mathematical reality of economic disparity. These economic disparities impact every aspect of Black life in America. This is not an intellectual argument, this is real and impactful, and a real disaster for our people because there is no evidence of a plan of action and/or strategy to address this economic disparity. The Black community doesn’t have enough income nor can it generate enough income to combat poverty (this phenomenon is a direct link to the legacy of the enslavement of Black people). To address poverty and the associated social ills requires the capacity and the ability to focus on a few select areas simultaneously.

The Black community has several problems. First, we long for “Black power”, but what is Black power? In my humble opinion, Black Power is Black Economics and Black Wealth and unfortunately we cannot have either without having Black consciousness. Next, we are forced to fight for economic equality in a race that is woefully unbalanced. Further, we have the problem of too many of our Black leaders not believing in Black liberation because they have been damaged by the effects of living in a white male dominated society coupled with an indoctrination of Black inferiority that has been handed down from one generation to the present.

I continue to say that “It’s not what they are doing to us; it’s what we’re not doing.” And, basically, what Black leaders are not doing is organizing. Organizing to hold ourselves accountable to some type of collective voice (Black free agent independence is criminal) and/or plan of action that many of us can get behind, but more importantly, to hold America accountable to one of the biggest crimes ever committed, the four hundred year theft of Black people’s ability to compete in America, which has created a massive economic structural deficit in the Black community that wreaks havoc on every aspect of a quality and normal life in America.

What the Black community needs more than anything is UNITY. Not the unity that is some superficial description where all Black people are all doing the same thing at the same time. That’s unrealistic. The unity that I’m referencing is a “functional” unity, where representatives (leadership) from all segments of the community are working together around a common and collective agenda. I call this Collective Leadership. A. Phillip Randolph stated: “At the banquet table of nature, there are no reserved seats. You get what you can take and you keep what you can hold. If you can’t take anything, you won’t get anything, and if you can’t hold anything, you won’t keep anything. And you can’t take anything without organization.” Restated, “Nobody is going to give us anything – we must take it; we must organize ourselves“ and we can’t do this without having Black leaders that believe in the liberation of Black people. It’s Time to Unite!!

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