The Revolution was Televised


          2011 was the year of the revolution.  Time magazine even named “the protestor” as their person of the year.

            From the Occupy Wall Street movement in our beloved country, to the uprisings throughout North Africa and the Middle East, revolutionaries let their voices be heard and change occurred rapidly in places that had fought it for many generations.

            Even President Barack Obama was proactive in bringing an end to the Iraq War and an end to Osama bin Laden’s threat of terrorism.  But what can Black America learn from theses uprisings in 2011?

            The answer is easy.  In order to initiate a change in one’s condition, the people suffering have to make a difference themselves and not rely on outsiders to improve their lot in life.

            Anyone who reads Regal Magazine regularly knows that I take a new school approach to the Black plight.  Although I am the first to admit that racism and oppression will always be prevalent in our society, it is on us, and nobody else, to change our condition and make America a better place for future generations of African Americans.

            There is an old saying that we were taught as children to dissuade us from bullying a classmate; adults would always say that once somebody was tired of being bullied they would fight back and become the aggressor.

            That same rationale is what led to the revolutions that were televised almost daily in 2011 and that is the same logic the African American community need to adopt if we are to enact change starting in 2012. 

            It is time that we stop looking to others to make our conditions better and look within ourselves.  If we have inadequate schools in our community, then volunteer your time, books or computers to make sure our children are receiving the proper education that they need.

            If we have a higher unemployment rate than any other ethnic group in America, then start your own business, support an African American-owned business and/or bring somebody of color with you when you climb that corporate ladder of success.

            If there is a problem with crime in our community, quit acting like not-snitching gets you a badge of honor or represents the G-code.  To people with commonsense, the G-code mentality only hurts our community, and nobody else’s

            If we truly believe that we are free and self-sufficient, we will stop blaming other races of people for our shortcomings.  Because like it or not, we have more control of our own actions than other people.  Furthermore, it is much easier to change our bad behavior than to force somebody else to change their bad behavior.

            So looking ahead to 2012, I am encouraging all Regal readers, and the entire African American community for that matter, to look within themselves before pointing the finger at other people.  Figure out what you can do to improve the African American experience and make something happen immediately.  Previous generations of African Americans made things happen when they were fed up with their position in society.  It is time that our generation does the same.

Smith is publisher of Regal Black Men’s Magazine, a publication dedicated to the African American community.

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