Am I My Brother's Keeper : LUSENET : A.M.E. Today Discussion : One Thread

Below is a qoute by Brother Payne from another thread. I thought it deserved its own subject. Thanks for allowing me to steal this comment (alparis).

" "European serfdom" is my observation of many of our nation's communities. Sometimes it seems that there are enclaves so closed and isolated that I am reminded of medieval France and Prussia (or Germany?). I see neighborhoods where people draw up and cut themselves off to some defree from the outside world. In those situations, there only "contact" becomes television. And I am very concerned about leaving perceptions of Who We Are in the hands of Hollywood and the Late Night News (both offer bleak pictures). True Afirmative Action still begins with us. THose who have knowledge, access and control must continue to pave the way and create opportunities and access for those who don't. We must pass on what we know to our youth, to our successors. We must continue to move forward, effectively and consistently, with the resources that are available to us. "

My question is this: Should we who can afford it, buy houses in these enclaves to deliberately integrate and "pave the way and create opportunities" for others? Blessings, Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, December 20, 2000


I would have to say there are probably two schools of thought on this. By responding "yes" we take on the responsibility of breaking down walls of ignorance from "within the enclave". This has the merit of changing some perceptions, as those who may never have known "us" get to see us up close and personal. Unfortunately, not all have this progressive, growth-oriented view, for there are those within the enclave who simply respond "well you're not like THEM". This is one of the great fallacies - the fact of the matter is, not only am I LIKE them, I AM them, and so is everyone else in the enclave. We are all citizens of the alleged melting pot (which to me is more like a stew).

If I answer "no", then it means more than likely remaining outside the gate, and with our folk. This has merit in that we remain a positive influence in the communities of our heritage and origin.

Didn't WEB DuBois address this in "The Souls of Black Folk"? Something comes to mind about impacts of stripping the community of the Talented Tenth.

-- Anonymous, December 20, 2000

During the 1950s and 60s, all of us lived in the same neighborhoods (didn’t have a choice). Creating an environment of doctors, lawyers, factor workers and whoever. The community raised the children; therefore, children less fortunate could see the benefits of doctor so in so or the business owner, etc. Principles and values were immediately transferred back to the community. When we became assimilated (integration), the first thing many of us did was abandon our community for the “good life”. We stopped supporting our businesses, doctors, groceries stores, builders and restaurants. This decline continues.

There are not easy answers…on the one hand our communities need help. On the other hand, we want our property value to increase. It is a caught twenty-two. I believe that we must develop/create ways to empower our people. This year, I plan to adopt a single mother and help her improve her quality of life. If she needs help with a school/course work, enrolling in classes…whatever, I am at her disposal. I will also do this for her four children as well.

-- Anonymous, December 20, 2000

Brenda, that's an excellent idea! It resonates within the framework of a concept I shared with my pastor yesterday - "Just One". In this case you are looking into the application of life principles. I like it!

-- Anonymous, December 20, 2000

If you have the money then go ahead, however, what is more important, buying houses just to hobknob with those who are the elite or of a different color or bringing those lost souls in to the fold and spreading message of salvation to them. Jesus is quickly coming back, no matter where we live, we are exepcted if we are bloodwashed holy ghost filled saints of the Most High to compell the lost to come in.

-- Anonymous, December 20, 2000

I was just watching the first half of the GMAC Mobile Bowl game between TCU and Southern Miss. The white mayor of Mobile and the black GMAC vice-president were interviewed during a lull in the action. Both well spoken and excited about the game. Is this a GREAT COUNTRY or what! Twenty years ago that would have been unheard of and if it happened, you would have to read about it in Jet or Ebony. Now, this VP probably needs to purchase his home in the gated community and join the country club just as the other GMAC VPs. I suggest this is a contribution to the struggle also. I would never accuse him of "abandoning" his roots, rather he is a role model for others. It is rather amusing that when a woman or black person is promioted to a position not previously held by a female of black, they are breaking through the glass ceiling, yet when that same person moves into the gated community or sends their kids to a private school.... Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, December 20, 2000

Moderation questions? read the FAQ