Friday, September 24, 2010

Field of Dreams

 "If you build it, they will come.", the voices told Kevin Costner's character in Field of Dreams.
But this isn't always true.
Sometimes this is the fault of a bad llocation, bad timing or even poor quality.
But people like Cory Booker and Geoffrey Canada seem to be making the right moves in the right places at the right time.
 Sure, some say that they don't believe in the "Magic Negro" or "White Savior" models often portrayed in Hollywood movies.
But these are neither bad nor good.
Ideally, this is a two way street.
When different races interact, someone is going to be in need of help and someone is going to be in a position to help.
Sure, Cory Booker could ignore any aid from New Jersey's governor and Facebook's founder and try to fix all of Newark's problems on his own.
But this is time consuming and wasteful.
Wouldn't it be more efficacious to use all resources available to meet ones own goals?
Judging by recent bailouts or historical wars - isn't this a country which has it's foundation built on assistance from others?
Geoffrey Canada started and oversees his Harlem Children's Zone with Black people for Black people.
He uses a whole life approach in his acculturation project.
But Mr. Canada uses the best people in any given field, he does not just use the best Black people.
His goal is to help many by expanding the talent base,
not to just help a few by diminishing the talent base.
The goal should not be to create an imagined New Mecca where only Blacks live ( Look at any majority Black city which has lowered it's level of expectation as an example).
The goal should be to build a new paradigm where Blacks can own and thrive based on their ability without being hindered by their race.
Is this an impossible dream?
Heck no, it is the same dream for which people like Mr. Canada and Mr. Booker are working towards.


brohammas said...

A) you were watching Oprah today. I was sitting next to my wife, whats your excuse?

B) I told you about Canada forever ago. Glad to see him getting the pub he has deserved... and the help.

C) Corey Booker is the man. Who goes to college THEN moves into the projects? Really?

And finally... thank you Mr. Facebook. Not for donating $100million to schools, but for creating a tool that makes it so I never have to blow money on a high school reunion. I already know everything I would want to know.

D.Freeman said...

One way doesn't make the only way. It is just as wrong to say go and get everyone to help you as it is for me to say we should do it ourselves. I can take a lump or two...

But, in this case we are talking about a institutional failure where neither Booker or Canada have their own resources to create their own. So the parallel you have drawn is close but no cigar.

While I commend Booker and Canada their change still depends on others providing them with resources. This is called a DEFICIT when one entity depends solely on another to help themselves. If the minority group does not build something of their own and take advantage of their resources they will forever be in a inferior position. Yes a person can hire all the poor folk but unless one of those poor folks does for self they have traded masters. Now that can be cloaked in this kumbaya of helping but nonetheless it's a new master.

It's the failure of intelligence to realize this scenario. In a perfect world where it's just misuse and erroneous allocation of funds hell yeah don't give them the money. But, when you are dealing with a institution ran by one group that historically misappropriates money to the detriment and exclusion of others you have to stop with the intellectual responses. Sometimes shit is shit and we have a lot of shit. You can send all the smart people into the sinkhole as you want and it still won't work because the solution isn't that complex. FILL the HOLE!

Again, I'm glad someone gave Newark money as I had a office there and I know how bad it is. BUT, the old saying holds true. Are we giving them fish or teaching them how to fish?

Just because the fishery hires fisherman and tells them they don't have to fish to live anymore doesn't mean somehow that's better than making the fisherman realize he can do it for himself with a little more education and some guts to take it on!

uglyblackjohn said...

@ brohammas - I only get to watch what I want to watch late at night on the DVR.
Every other time it depends on what they are watching in the home I'm visiting.

@ FreeMan - I know that there is more than one way to solve any given problem and that no one way (even if it works) is universal.
The point I was trying to make was that WE should
just start building and then let those who can help help.
We should not wait for someone to come riding into town on a white horse to solve all our problems.

D.Freeman said...

@UBJ - Damnit why did you have to throw white horse in your response! LOL

I'm not against help I just wouldn't want any under the angle I set up. I know there's a value in us doing it 100% oursevles. Just like a man wishes his son would become a man and take on the challenges by himself it is my same angle. If the same son never tried but set up his angle knowing and praying that the father would fill in the gap the father would be disappointed even though he helped his own son.

Now Blacks are not the Son of another group but the lesson remains the same.

BUT, I am not one to stop anyone else from going to solve our collective problems. I won't even bad mouth them as I know 2 people even though competing or alternate points of view help more people by applying their theory. So the goal is to do something not to create the perfect solution. In the end the one that works WON!