Happy New Year! A happy new year is the focus for the African American community. Every year we choose a milestone, too frequently it has been the milestone of celebrity iconic celebration. It has been the celebration and the benchmarking of celebrity accomplishments that are at the forefront of the state of mind of the African American community. Keeping up with Jay Z’s wares and his family have an entire generation mesmerized; looking outside themselves instead of reading and evaluating their own internal compass. Beyoncé has done a phenomenal job of hypnotizing an entire generation of high school dropouts and women who can sing put a ring on it, but the attack on the character of women in general and African American women in particular continues to be exploited by general media sources. The objective of the tea party is known as are the districts that the Republican Party plan to attack to achieve control of the United States Senate. Their agendas are set and as the year progresses, they will be celebrating an achievement that can be measured. What are the African American objectives and measurable achievements for 2014 beyond the Grammy and beyond the NBA championship?
It is as though we are paralyzed. There is no collective agenda for African American progress. Forging a collective agenda that could be shared at churches monthly and disseminated by social media could create a phenomenon that would alter the destruction that has been wrought due to blind agendas in the African American community and the absence of cultural respect. Our identity as a community is stagnant in its approach to greatness that would be led by those iconic individuals whose mission should be in addition to ingratiating themselves, pointing to the advancement of the collective agenda that in short would include at least the following items:
Monthly recognition of the principle of unity by economic exchange within the cultural African American collective business units.
Cultural holidays bimonthly that recognize and celebrate principles of African American collective success.
Intellectual and cultural monthly exchanges that highlight the creative ancestors and current creative artists and literary figures who highlight the voice of accomplishment through educational advancement and creative processes that examine and showcase valuable perspectives of the African American community.
Cultural influencers of the African American community would encourage the pursuit of intellectual capital, ie., educational degrees and advancement plus skill set acquisition. Where applicable, it could be included in some aspect of song liner notes in such a way as to encourage youth to understand the importance of education and skill set acquisition.
To celebrate and to exchange careers and jobs that will be available in the future jobs that advance a community skills that are needed in a society in such a way that individuals can easily access databases that share the criteria for these particular skill sets.
To remove the ignorant examples or references that are derogatory to the image of African Americans by not participating in creative processes that transmit negative images of African Americans. To understand that it is discriminatory to have stereotypical negative African American images offered for economic exchange.
These and many more aspects of how we might begin a new agenda, or even a more simplified step like not signing up for loans that have interest rates 10 points beyond prime. To understand that the need to save money as a community is important. Consumption should assume that the individual or corporation that we consume with has a reciprocating relationship beyond the service or product.
Collectively, our love for each other must be the start of where we are as African Americans. We must not look at black history as a look back, but as a step forward into the great shoes of our forefathers, and a reflection of how we will be known for adding and advancing our community with dignity intelligence and grace.