Most Of What I Learned About Black History, I Taught Myself

Today is the last “official” day of Black History Month. I celebrate every day and continue to share knowledge on a regular basis.

There’s so much Black History that I didn’t learn in school. When I was 15 years old, I went to the library and borrowed Mary McLeod Bethune’s autobiography. My need to learn more led to me studying African Kings and Queens. I found this book. If you haven’t read it, it’s an empowering read:

Next, I discovered the various inventions that wouldn’t exist were it not for a Black man or woman. Here is a partial lists:

Then, I read Malcolm X’s autobiography and he woke up the militant spirit in me: “We declare our right on this earth to be a man, to be a human being, to be respected as a human being, to be given the rights of a human being in this society, on this earth, in this day, which we intend to bring into existence by any means necessary.” I became proud of my people and recognized we have persevered and succeeded against all the odds and obstacles that have been placed in our paths.

Finally, Fannie Lou Hamer made me even more proud to be a Black woman and honor her and others like her who secured my right to vote. Fannie Lou Hamer said, “Actually, the world and America is upset and the only way to bring about a change is to upset it more.”

In studying Black History, I found my voice. My voice to speak out about injustice and demand to be treated right. Studying Black History made me recognize I have a legacy of determination, intelligence and ingenuity pumping in my veins. I have no other choice but to be the best at whatever I set my mind to do. It’s in my DNA!

What Black History knowledge didn’t you learn in school?

Resist Chicago Resist!

Folks always have something to say. At least Father Pfleger is true to his activism for the community. Are protests supposed to make us comfortable? Will we agree with all protests? Everyone has the right to protest. A protest is supposed to shake things up, bring attention to disparities, and facilitate change.

The truth is some folks don’t care about the shootings in Chicago because it’s not happening in their neighborhood. Well, guess what? One day shootings could be happening in your neighborhood or one of your family members could be a victim of gun violence. Then, you will want everyone involved in being an activist against gun violence.

I think about my family members and it’s only God’s grace that it hasn’t been one of my family members or me the victim of gun violence. We are good at talking mess about what needs to happen and what everyone else should be doing. Well, what about you? What are you willing to do for things to change?

If you are interested in protesting against gun violence in Chicago, please click here. Shut the Dan Ryan down on July 7th!

There’s A Leader Inside of You!

There’s a leader inside of you that wants to manifest in your life. Leaders have certain characteristics that set them apart from everyone else. There are so many leadership characteristics, but the characteristics that resonate with me most are honesty, positive, good communicator, integrity, confidence and transparent. What leadership characteristics resonate the most with you? You will notice that the leadership characteristics that resonate most with you are the characteristics that you will recognize most within yourself.

You may be wondering how do I know there’s a leader inside of you. There’s been an argument that will probably continue forever between leadership scholars. One school of thought is people are born leaders, and the other school of thought is people can learn to be leaders. I believe each of us has the ability to be a leader. The issue is do we want to be a leader.

Some find out because of challenges or adversity in their own lives that they are leaders. Others seem to have a natural gravitation to leadership. They always seem to be placed in positions of leadership, or are expected to lead. Are you a leader? Do you want to be a leader? What events will have to happen for you to demonstrate you are a leader?