A few years ago the internationally recognized and famous basketball superstar Charles Barkley made his now famous quote of not being a role model and was applauded by many in the main stream dominant media. Sir Charles of course like many other black middle class and highly successful Americans has always poke fun and often uses irreverent humor to make statements on topical issues of the day. In this case unfortunately it was at the expense of the millions of poor, urban and less fortunate lost souls who too yearn for a small piece of the American pie that quite often can appear as a mere illusion.
No where in the history of the world, has any oppressed groups escaped their plight without the aid of a vibrant and conscious middle class that was prepared to think beyond self by giving back and providing aid and support to the masses. One of the last remnants of slavery across the Diasporas is the growing menace of female dominant single parent homes. For this reason I contend that others and need to step up and fill the gap wherever possible.
In many quarters our heroes are being attacked across the media as villains, crooks and miscreants irrespective of positions. This unfortunate position has force many in the wider society to ask “where are my……… heroes?”
It is why that one can not help but be proud of the efforts of a special Presidential candidate’s effort in trying to go where others were fearful to trespass before him. I am speaking about Mr. Obama , the son of a black immigrant father and a white Kansan mother. The reactions of main stream media are quite revealing. He has been vilified, and castigated as a mere neophyte who should relax , bide his time and garner some experience. What is intriguing to me here is that the same education that is touted as the way forward to obtaining that American dream for others is not given similar credence for a son of the soil because of what he is or might represent.
My question at this time is, if not him then who has a chance from within his ranks? Black men should also be encouraged to excel in other pursuits besides entertainment and sports. I believe that this individual is the perfect role model that is needed to display the value of service and sacrifice for a nation. I admonish others to follow up this blog with a reading of Dr. King’s 1963, ‘Letter from Birmingham jail.’ It was a call to order to the wider community to takepositive steps and recognize that the time was ready for concrete action. Today more than ever such a mindset is needed. It is imperative that some credence be given to real heroes and role models that care for all. No longer should a people be relegated to second class citizens as the world watches on in horror. The fact that a few have benefited and are fearful to stand up for true justice , economic prosperity, and political empowerment for their fellow human beings should not deter real progressive minds.
The time for action is now.