Tag Archives: reading

The Mis-Educated Negro

nothing changes

Sometimes I ask myself, if I have been here before because of how I see things, usually from a different perspective than most. My conclusion is that “history” repeats itself, so there is nothing new under the sun. however, if by chance I have been here before in a past lives I am sure it was as a man of African descent and had something to do with make the great history we achieved. This would give me the authority to compare and contrast a nation of people living in a nation without nationality.

For this reason, I believe without question every black person – young and old – should be required to read the most profound novel ever written on the African American Diaspora – “The Mis-Education of the Negro”. Yes, mandatory reading! This novel contained powerful messages revealed within its pages. Especially when you consider this great work was originally published in 1933 by Dr. Carter G. Woodson, who is known as and considered the father of Black History Month.

Today, I am struck by the fact that we have not understood the potent message left for us. The thesis of Dr. Woodson’s book is that Negroes of his day were being culturally indoctrinated rather than taught in American schools; actually, not even given the advantage of education. This conditioning, he claims, causes African Americans to become dependent, seeking out inferior places in the greater society of which they are a part. This assertion is clearly evident – nearly eighty years later.

He challenged his readers to become empowered by doing for themselves, regardless of what they were taught: “History shows that it does not matter who is in power… those who have not learned to do for themselves and have to depend solely on others never obtain any more rights or privileges in the end than they did in the beginning.”

Today with all the advantages concerning educational opportunities, business exposure, social networking, and a president who looks like us; we are in the best position to succeed than at any time in our history. So the obvious question is “why are we not?” Every other ethnic community takes advantage of their options to strengthen and empower their communities while, sadly, robbing our communities in the process. We will let anybody set up shop in our communities and take our money.

My point is: We must learn to do business with each other in order to gain wealth by keeping our money in our communities. Some say we spend trillions annually, and nearly all of it leaves our community within 15 minutes. Let me remind you that the definition of insanity is to continue to do the same things and expect different results. We can change the world, but first we must change ourselves.

Here is a quote from the “The Mis-Education of the Negro”:

“When you control a man’s thinking you do not have to worry about his actions. You do not have to tell him not to stand here or go yonder. He will find his ‘proper place’ and will stay in it. You do not need to send him to the back door. He will go without being told. In fact, if there is no back door, he will cut one for his special benefit.”

It is time to build upon what was left for us or more importantly “know where you came from to know where you’re going if we are ever going to get there.” And that is my Thought Provoking Perspective!


JUST US!

jail

My message for today comes from a powerful video that you should be sure to WATCH. Every single thing the speaker is saying can be proven without a shadow of a doubt. Just look at the power of the prison lobby and the massive increase in prison population since the 1980’s.

America has MORE prisoners in jail than China or any other country on the planet. How is it possible that we have a higher prison population than China who is extremely oppressive and has four times our total population? The overwhelming proportion of the population are people of color. How can this be when we represent such a small portion of the overall population?

I’m sharing this message with hopes that it is food for thought. Stop dancing to the tomb!!! And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…


Remembering Juneteeth

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We must never forget Juneteenth, the oldest known celebration commemorating the ending of slavery in the United States. Dating back to 1865, it was on June 19th that the Union soldiers, led by Major General Gordon Granger, landed at Galveston, Texas with news that the war had ended and that those enslaved were now free. Note that this was two and a half years after President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation – which had become official January 1, 1863.

The Emancipation Proclamation had little impact on the Texans due to the minimal number of Union troops to enforce the new Executive Order. However, with the surrender of General Lee in April of 1865, and the arrival of General Granger’s regiment, the forces were finally strong enough to influence and overcome the resistance. Many attempts to explain the two and a half year delay in the receipt of this important news have yielded several versions that have been handed down through the years.

The story often told is of a messenger who was murdered on his way to Texas with the news of freedom. Another story is that the news was deliberately withheld by the enslavers to maintain the labor force on the plantations. Then there is yet another story that federal troops actually waited for the slave owners to reap the benefits of one last cotton harvest before going to Texas to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation. All of which, or neither of these version, could be true. Certainly, for some, President Lincoln’s authority over the rebellious states was in question. Regardless, the conditions in Texas remained status quo well beyond what was statutory.

One of General Granger’s first orders of business was to read to the people of Texas, General Order Number 3 which began most significantly with:

“The people of Texas are informed that in accordance with a Proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free. This involves an absolute equality of rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves, and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and free laborer.”

The reactions to this profound news ranged from pure shock to immediate jubilation. While many lingered to learn of this new employer to employee relationship, many left before these offers were completely off the lips of their former ‘masters’ – attesting to the varying conditions on the plantations and the realization of freedom. Even with nowhere to go, many felt that leaving the plantation would be their first grasp of freedom.

North was a logical destination and for many it represented true freedom, while the desire to reach family members in neighboring states drove the some into Louisiana, Arkansas and Oklahoma. Settling into these new areas as free men and women brought on new realities and the challenges of establishing a heretofore non-existent status for black people in America. Recounting the memories of that great day in June of 1865 and its festivities would serve as motivation as well as a release from the growing pressures encountered in their new territory. The celebration of June 19th was coined “Juneteenth” and grew with more participation from descendants.

The Juneteenth celebration was a time for reassuring each other, for praying and for gathering remaining family members. Juneteenth continued to be highly revered in Texas decades later, with many former slaves and descendants making an annual pilgrimage back to Galveston on this date. A range of activities were provided to entertain the masses, many of which continue in the tradition today. Juneteenth almost always focused on education and self improvement. Thus, often guest speakers are brought in, and the elders are called upon to recount the events of the past. Prayer services were also a major part of these celebrations.

The Civil Rights movement of the 50’s and 60’s yielded both positive and negative results for the Juneteenth celebrations. While it pulled many of the African American youth away and into the struggle for racial equality, many linked these struggles to the historical struggles of their ancestors. This was evidenced by student demonstrators involved in the Atlanta civil rights campaign in the early 1960’s, who wore Juneteenth freedom buttons. Again in 1968, Juneteenth received another strong resurgence through Poor Peoples March to Washington D.C. Rev. Ralph Abernathy’s call for people of all races, creeds, economic levels and professions to come to Washington to show support for the poor.

Juneteenth today, celebrates African American freedom and achievement, while encouraging continuous self-development and respect for all cultures. As it takes on a more national, symbolic and even global perspective, the events of 1865 in Texas are not forgotten, for all of the roots tie back to this fertile soil from which a national day of pride is growing.

The future of Juneteenth looks bright as the number of cities and states creating Juneteenth committees continues to increase. Respect and appreciation for all of our differences grow out of exposure and working together. Getting involved and supporting Juneteenth celebrations creates new bonds of friendship and understanding among us. This indeed brightens our future – and that is the Spirit of Juneteenth. So lest not forget!!! And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

http://johntwills.com


A Must Read Novel 

Just a Season

Just a Season is a luminous story into the life of a man who, in the midst of pain and loss, journeys back in time to reexamine all the important people, circumstances, and intellectual fervor that contributed to the richness of his life. It is a must read novel that will cause you to see the world through new eyes.

This fictional narrative begins with a grief-stricken father visiting the grave-site if his beloved son who was killed in a tragic accident; a moment that he and no other loving parent should ever have to face. As he sadly gazes at his son’s headstone and reads what is inscribed there, the dates 1981 – 2001 brings about an illuminating discovery.

The tiny dash that separates the years of one’s birth and death represents the whole of a person’s life. So if this tiny dash were to tell his life’s story, what would it say? In Just a Season, the dash of this man’s life is revealed and what emerges from the pages of this book is a legacy of true benevolence and grace. This is not a story you will read, it is a story that you will live as you travel in time through one man’s extraordinary eyes as he vibrantly relives his family legacy. It’s the journey of a lifetime.

AMAZON

Purchase the novel today!!! 

 

Praise for Just a Season

Just a Season is a thought provoking novel by author, John T. Wills. …focusing on various topics such as pain, suffering, love and life. The characters and the plot are captured very well. It is very well written from beginning to end. This is one of those books, where you cannot judge the book based on its title and cover.” Congratulations well done! Afrika Asha Abney

Thank you for your example of tenderness and discipline in what I know is a story of love, delicately shared with readers in a way that says, this life, though brief, is significant. So hold it in highest regard for “the dash” is our legacy to love ones, indeed to the world, which we are blessed to share, albeit, for Just a Season.” Excellent! Sistah Joy, Poet, Cable TV Host

“Author John T. Wills has a remarkable gift for writing, a unique talent for story creation. In his book, “Just a Season”, John carries us wonderfully through the life of a boy who becomes a man with the special guidance of a loving and wise grandfather. His writing grasps us emotionally in the first few pages, and keeps us there as he reflects on and reveals this close, heartwarming relationship between grandson and grandfather. The story takes us into the “growing pains” of a boy-child, the diverse and difficult heartbreaking moments this main character experiences, as well as the many humorous antics of a boy seemingly born to be wild.

However, always hearing his grandfather’s voice pressing into his conscience, whether near or far, he learns valuable, stem and stabilizing lessons that remain with him throughout his life. I see a special “wit”, along with an insightful style as he tells the story in real-time, artfully integrated with history’s most monumental events. You feel as if you somehow become an invisible character in the unfolding of this epic narration. “Just a Season” is enjoyable to say the least, enriching and exciting at its best, and definitely a must-read. Silver Rae Fox, Actress, Model, Radio Personality

“This is the stuff movies are made of… not since “Roots” have I read a story that so succinctly chronicles an African American story! Amazing! Cheryl, Avid Reader

“Wills pulls you in from the very first page… Just a Season is a heart-wrenching story about growing up and believing in yourself. I highly recommend this book to young men in high school, trying to find themselves and feeling like they have nowhere to turn.” Cheryl Hayes, APOOO Book Club

“Not since The Color Purple have I read a book that evoked such emotions. John T. Wills possesses the ability to transport the reader directly into the life and struggles of his main characters story. I was educated in a way that did not afford me the benefit of truly understanding the significance of the historical events taught from a stand alone perspective. This book actually touched my heart and inspired me to increase the equity in my “dash”! Excellent! Tonja Covington

“John T. Wills captures male bonding between generations and lets the reader passively watch as family love and closeness unfold on the pages . . .” Outstanding — A great read! Cheryl Robinson, Host and Executive Producer of Just About Books Talk Show

“JUST A SEASON is laced with thought-provoking commentary on the Vietnam War, the assassinations of the 1960s, the migration of crack cocaine into inner-city neighborhoods, and a myriad of other ills that have rocked America. This is a very good piece intertwined with several history lessons spanning many decades.” Dawn Reeves, RAWSISTAZ Book Club

“John T. Wills particulars each notion so eloquently that you feel that you’re actually right there with him… this is an inflicting history lesson that I believe all African American males should experience.” JUST A SEASON is a pivotal read.” Carmen, OOSA ONLINE BOOK CLUB

“From the first page you are transported into John’s world as if you are there and are experiencing it with him. I am amazed at how John is able to use the events of the time to let you know where you are in time. I felt as if I was teleported… his ability to describe what was going on during that time makes me extremely proud of my heritage. You will come away with a feeling of, now I know why that is. I thoroughly enjoyed “Just a Season”. Mia L. Haynes

“Just a Season is a work of love, respect and honor… A book filled with the wonder of life, and the pain and growth encountered in living it.” Outstanding! Ron Watson, Editor, New Book Reviews.Org

“in the final analysis the tiny little dash represents the whole of a person’s life . If someone, for whatever reason, were to tell the story concealed within my dash. What might they say? A thought provoking and powerful read that will forever resonate within my soul. Speechless! Carron

http://johntwills.com

Legacy – A New Season 

AMAZON

Just a Season


“Woman I Feel You”

2Carol Paris-Ellis is a poet who writes with clear-eyed intelligence and passion. However, as is often the case her story is one born out of extreme difficulty, which has a way of fashioning the most heart-felt and sensitive art.

Carol Paris-Ellis proves this in Woman I Feel You – she writes with a purpose and with such fire as to feed the fragile flame of her art in prison. It neither comes out overwrought nor lacking in the finer philosophies. The poems in this collection shine with clear-eyed intelligence and commonsense. But the passion is so strong that readers might feel the poet speaking beside them as they read the book. She reels the reader in and captivates.

Paris-Ellis’ desire to write is strong of her life’s journey. Some of these poems were written on her knees in the Niantic prison dorm. Amidst the chaos, she asked the Lord in all humility if He would make her His poet. Such purpose did not fail to convince other inmates of the purity of the author’s purpose. They were the first ones convinced by the authenticity and talent in her work.

Pain and experience make them the best critics of all that is dross and fake in many things. There are many stylistic experiments in the book: one is inducing the reader’s eye to think that the text is growing or moving if he or she scans swiftly down or up the pages – perhaps Paris-Ellis’ visual approximation of the vertiginous way the work was written.

Prayerful, there is a refreshing gratitude and appreciation for things the supposedly free majority enjoy without fear or malice. The ones who read this shall feel a surge of spiritual strength after the experience. It is one of the gifts readers of this book will enjoy.

About the Author

Carol Paris-Ellis, a contemporary poet inspired by God. 1997: Her writing was elected into the International Poetry Hall of Fame, and her first poem, “When We Get Married” was published in “Searching for Soft Voices”. Also, she received the Editors Choice Award for her achievements presented by National Library of Poetry. 1998: Carol was recognized for her poem “A True Princess”. She received a letter from “St James Palace office of the Prince of Wales” saying his “Royal Highness”, is most grateful. March 15,1999: Carol received a letter from President William Clinton, thanking her for her message of support concerning the tragedy amongst our youth in Colorado. 1999: Carol opened the Vikkie Winans gospel concert at Kennedy High School, Waterbury, Conn with a rendition of selected poems. 1999-2000: Carol was a nominee for Poet of the Year, by International Poetry Hall of Fame. January 5, 2011: She received a Certificate of Excellence sponsored by Famous Poets Institutes for Advanced Poetic Studies. This is Carol’s first book.

Get your copy of “Woman I Feel You” Today!

Publication Date: January 13, 2012: eBook; $3.99; 978-1-4691-4521-1

To request a complimentary paperback review copy, contact the publisher at (888) 795-4274 x. 7879.  To purchase copies of the book for resale, please fax Xlibris at (610) 915-0294 or call (888) 795-4274 x. 7879.

For more information, contact Xlibris at (888) 795-4274 or on the web at http://www.Xlibris.com.

 


Maya Angelou Memorial Service Attended By Oprah, Bill Clinton, Michelle Obama And More

God Bless you Dr. Angelou!!! RIP


You Should Know Dr. Ben-Jochannan

Professor Yosef Ben-Jochannan, affectionately known as “Dr. Ben” is the foremost African scholar and an Egyptologist. He is a man who proved the world wrong with fact based history of Africa which made a profound impact upon world thinking. He taught at Cornell University for over 15 years; Dr. Ben has lectured widely on both sides of the Atlantic on the theme – the ancient civilizations of Egypt. His presentations placed him in great demand by students and community groups, especially those of African descent through an unwavering theme that the ancient civilizations along the Nile were African and the foundation of the world.

Dr. Ben was formally educated in Puerto Rico. He continued his education in the Virgin Islands andBrazil. Dr. Ben earned a B.S. degree in Civil Engineering at the University of Puerto Rico, and a Master’s degree in Architectural Engineering from the University of Havana, Cuba. He received doctoral degrees in Cultural Anthropology and Moorish History from the University of Havana and the University of Barcelona Spain.

Dr. Ben was an adjunct professor at Cornell University, Ithaca, New York for over a decade (1976–1987). He has written and published over forty-nine books and papers, revealing much of the information unearthed while he was in Egypt. Two of his better known works include Black Man of the Nile and His Family and Africa: Mother of Major Western Religions. In his writings, he argues that the original Jews were from Ethiopia and were Black Africans, while the white Jews later adopted the Jewish faith and its customs.

In 1939, shortly after receiving his undergraduate degree, Dr. Ben’s father sent him to Egypt to study firsthand the ancient history of African People. Since 1941, Dr. Ben has been to Egypt at least twice a year. He began leading educational tours to Egypt in 1946. When asked why he began the tours, he replied “because no one knew or cared about Egypt and most believed Egypt was not in Africa.” According to Dr. Ben, Egypt is the place to go to learn the fundamentals of living. Over five decades have passed and Dr. Ben, a preeminent scholar and Egyptologist, remains focused on Nile Valley Civilization.

Dr. Ben immigrated to the United States in the early 1940s and worked as a draftsman to continue his studies. He claims that, in 1945, he was appointed chairman of the African Studies Committee at the headquarters of the newly founded UNESCO, a position from which he stepped down in 1970. In 1950, Ben-Jochannan began teaching Egyptology at Malcolm King College, then at City College in New York City.

Dr. Ben taught that Aristotle visited the Library of Alexandria. In 2002, Ben-Jochannan donated his personal library of more than 35,000 volumes, manuscripts and ancient scrolls to The Nation of Islam. Ben-Jochannan has been criticized for allegedly distorting history and promoting Black supremacy. I say since it is a fact that Africa is the birthplace of mankind the facts he revealed are truth. Read the work of Dr. Ben and get to know this great man!

The concept that Africa had no history and that its people were savages was soundly debunked in part because of Dr. Ben’s work. Further, his work proved that the Africa continent were superior historically to those from Europe before they wore a shoe or had a window. And that’s my Thought Provoking Perspective…

http://johntwills.com


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