Category Archives: Black Youth

Some things that I have un-learned…

images
On my mission to re-educate myself and help to re-educate others, I think it’s time I share some of the theoretical myths which have been “debunked” and busted for me personally at least.
Throughout the generations, us Black people sure have been spoon-fed a lot of bullsh*t.
We’ve been conditioned to believe that the major reason we’ve been unsuccessful in collaborating as a People is due to the fact that our collective language, spiritual beliefs,cultural norms and mores were stripped from us in our initial committal into bondage. However, we know that people were kidnapped from various parts of the many countries in Africa therefore, the languages, spiritual beliefs, cultural norms and mores were never really a cohesive set of similarities among our people to begin with. We know for certain that the many ethnic groups within Africa have a multitude of differences which naturally set them apart.

Fast-forward to slavery. We were forced to cease communicating in our various native tongues and understand and communicate mostly in the English language. My point? Once English becomes the language standard, Black people living in North America now have a collective language bond. Furthermore, we also know that our ancestors were acute enough to create sub-languages or “jargon” to communicate amongst themselves to protect their vulnerabilities. Of course regional dialect was a natural bi-product of this evolution of words and depending on where you were from, colloquialism became another informal language bond for Black people and still is.
I’m from North Preston, Nova Scotia, unless I want you to know what I am saying, you won’t. We have our own unique expressions, terminology, slang and even definitions.
Although indigenous North American Black people have been brainwashed into believing that having no shared language is what separates us as a People, we do in fact share a language; and thanks to the Brits, it’s English. Myth, busted.

In terms of spiritual beliefs, I can’t even begin to explain the numerous taboos, deities, Gods, Spirits, rituals etc. More have likely been lost over time than there is my capacity for ever learning even a fraction of them. Understanding Africa from an anthropological point of view is amazingly vast. But, I do know one thing is certain; That Christianity was never the natural “religion” of the Africans brought captive to North America. If anything, as far as “organized” religions go, we know that Judaism and Islamism had spread throughout Africa prior to the 1500’s when the African “religious” systems were first introduced to the Americas because of the trans-Atlantic slave trade.
Once again, as the Bible and other relics of Christianity were imposed upon the Africans, they were eventually accepted and practiced, there is then created another tie that binds; Christianity.
Whether Protestant, Catholic or Lutheran, Christianity becomes a common denominator and the unity of Black people is solidified through Christian spirituality. Perhaps even more so than before because now, we have no choice. No matter the cultural background, Christianity becomes the standard practice and therefore we’re all united in Jesus’ name. Amen.

I’ve spent some time in Southern Africa and culturally speaking and of course, depending on where you are, be it South Africa, Zimbabwe or Zambia, there is a multitude of cultural differentials. Many Egyptians don’t even consider themselves Africans and especially not Black people! Tell most Somalians, Ethiopians and Eritreans that they are Black and your’re in for a very interesting conversation. Cultural diversity is a complex and beautiful thing and is not unique to Black people so again, the brainwash used to make this “issue” a cause for dissident is deceitful and detrimental to our race.

Think about what I’m saying here and examine all that you been lead to believe as a Black person. Think about the rhetoric you’ve heard countless times during Black history month. Think about the many times you’ve heard, “Well, the Africans sold their own people into slavery you know.” It’s contextual, it’s relative, it’s bullsh*t.
Every day in the news we see examples of how the West imposes their beliefs and attitudes internationally, deeming what is “wrong” and what is socially acceptable and what is within the scope of “human rights”. Really? After knowing what our own history has extended to Black people in North America, who’s zoomin’ who? We know that the “powers that be” value industry, corporate instinct over human dignity and ultimately the all-mighty dollar.

What is true is that we know Black people were forced to learn and communicate in a language that wasn’t our own. We know that at a point in the not so distant past, Black people were arbitrarily expected to assimilate as a labor force and collaborate, cooperate and work together. We know that we were given Christianity to save us from our savagery. We know that no matter which part of Africa our descendants were stolen from, they were in fact stolen and dehumanized for capitol gain. We know that collectively, us North American Black folk all have this in common.
So this platform of well orchestrated propaganda used to “explain”, justify and retain our social antagonism from each other is a fallacy.

We were taught these things to keep us from coming together in numbers. We were given this mis-information to keep us separated, dived and disjointed. We have been mis-educated on purpose.
Being realistic about our commonalities and celebrating them is a major step in realizing our full potential as a connected Black community.

I know I am simplifying things, but, I believe it’s what we share as a People that holds the key to uniting us as a People; We just have to learn to think right and that means un-learning a whole lot of bad information and re-educating ourselves and being fully in the know.

Light reflected is enlightenment infinite
~Rachelle

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Weapons Of Mass Communication And Critical Thinking.

Think

If knowledge is power than the ability to think, criticize, determine and communicate are the traits of a powerful and therefore dangerous person no?
More and more I am seeing a doe-eyed blank stare coming from the young people in my life when it comes to being able to self-advocate.
My nephews cringe at the thought of having to make a phone call to a professional organization for fear of saying the wrong thing, and my own daughter cowers and shrinks and assumes a child-like voice when expected to leave a voice message or is asked to order a pizza over the phone.

I suspect that this behavior is simply a reflection of their lack of self-confidence in terms of their communication skills however; part of being successful in life is having the ability to produce an independent thought and communicate it. They simply haven’t yet realized their divine power as humans.

Would you agree that it is imperative that our children learn to think and communicate effectively, eloquently and confidently in order to support their opportunities for success?

Our thoughts and opinions are largely influenced by our exposure to elements which evolve our vocabulary, develop our attitudes and challenge our core beliefs and value systems. Depending on the variables, these exposures not only help to formulate who we are as individuals but, ultimately strengthen our confidence as readers, speakers, writers and most importantly thinkers.
We must ensure that our children are provided maximum exposure to elements which will benefit their capacity for analytic output and the communication skill-set to animate their thoughts, emotions and opinions into the known universe. As adults, parents and mentors, we must encourage reading, encourage watching credible news sources, encourage travel, encourage the dramatic arts, encourage tasteful film, indulge their natural curiosities about the world and the people in it. Encourage calculated risk-taking. These things are needed for the learner to broaden the boundaries of the thought process. Open-mindedness is a key element for re-educating our children and placing them on the pathways to success and freeing them from the foothills of mediocrity.

When our children believe that they possess the know-how to think and speak for themselves, they can then be expected to grow up with the security of knowing that they can advocate for themselves and defend against the proverbial powers that be. They can be expected to negotiate. Arbitrate. Adjudicate. Mediate. Intervene. Collaborate. Compromise…
Relinquish the thesaurus, you get the picture. There is no limit to what they can do when we attune them to the value of knowing.

John Dewey held the philosophy that building strong thinking skills through education not only benefits the learner but, also the community and the democracy as a whole. I’m definitely in support of that school of thought especially in terms of building those skills within the Black community. Being able to think and to learn to fully exploit the benefits of effective communication is arming our children with powerful weaponry and this is beautifully dangerous in terms of the status quo.
Without effective communication skills, the components needed for critical thinking are lost on the individual. The acts of problem solving and decision making are compromised and I believe that this puts the Black learner at a major disadvantage both educationally and socially.

If it is true that “The process of critical thinking involves the careful acquisition and interpretation of information and use of it to reach a well-justified conclusion.”(Wikipedia) it obviously follows that a lack of critical thinking results in poor problem solving and decision making. If you disagree with everything I’ve written, I’m sure we can at least agree that our children deserve a fair chance at making the best possible decisions for themselves.

If our past is any indication of our future, as a People, we’ve come a long way and have the strength, courage and tenacity to face whatever future we decide for ourselves; it no longer has to be reactionary. Once we are armed with the power of wisdom and embrace cooperation, we are a force to be reckoned with and we can be in full control of our collective destiny as a People.
We must banish the relics of The Jim Crow era in terms of the expectation that Black people are doomed by an inevitable separate, poor and desolate outcome. That’s brainwash and couldn’t possibly be any further from the truth.

In hopes of shaping a brighter future for our generations, we must safeguard them in all possible facets. Thinking, speaking, reading, writing and ultimately communicating are the most precious commodities we can stockpile.

Light reflected is enlightenment infinite.
~Rachelle

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Vocabulary 101

Success

Yesterday a fellow parent and I had an intriguing discussion on the issue of respect. It got me thinking about how important it is for our children to fully comprehend words and their value as necessary tools for efficient communication. Most adults understand the power that words hold but, are we truly transferring that knowledge onto our children? I often hear the teenagers, who manage to takeover our house on most days, talk about respect; who they do and don’t respect, and about being disrespected. It occurred to me that children often hear and use words most of which, they don’t understand the definition.

Consider this possibility; That we lack basic knowledge in terms of the language we use to describe ourselves and the ways in which we view world around us. Because of this, our perception and worldly views can be easily shifted askew which impacts our interactions and ultimately our experiences.
For instance, the word respect is defined as a feeling of deep admiration and also as expressing admiration therefore; the word respect is both a noun and a verb at the same time. Respect is both that which it is and it is that which we do. If our children do not understand the basic premise for the term respect, how can we then expect them to display it, practice and regulate their behaviors according to it?

Arming our children with an extensive vocabulary is one of the best things that we can do to proactively equip them with the knowledge they will need to be successful in life. Remember knowledge doesn’t only mean power, it also equals confidence. When a child possesses the vocabulary needed to accurately express their thoughts and feelings, it becomes natural to feel better about themselves and their place in the world. What are the words for that? To name a few: self-esteem, self-awareness, self-image and integrity. Integrity happens to be my very favorite among all of the words and I use it often with my students for literacy and self-awareness exercises.

There are many ways that we can help enhance our children’s expressive lexicon. Encouraging reading not only enhances a child’s literacy skills, it is nourishment for a learner’s vocabulary. “Can you even spell that and what does it mean?” is a running line in my house and the kids are often eager to show and prove that they can and do. In fact there are countless “teaching moments” to impart vocabulary lessons into your child’s routine and it’s really easy to make it silly and fun and educational all at the same time. You see, educate is a verb too and it’s inevitably what we do that helps to shape the future for our generations.

Thanks ever so much to my grade eleven Black literature teacher for instilling this powerful quality within me. Ms. Tynes, you really were a gem. I’m big on vocabulary, in fact, when I swear my mother is known to remind me of how much money was spent on my “first rate” vocabulary and that “cursing” only wastes it. I’m a scrabble-literati-words-with-friends-crossword playing word nerd. Needless to say, I can hold my own in the realms of oral and written communication and that dear reader is why sometimes, the pen really can be mightier than the sword.
What’s your favorite word?

Light reflected is enlightenment infinite.
~Rachelle

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The *N* Word And The Paula Deen Distraction.

Jemima
I’m writing this article in response to the Paula Deen n*gger incident. First of all, let me start by saying that I am not the least bit surprised that a sixty-something year old Southern white woman is admitting to using the word n*gger. I’d be more surprised if she claimed that she’d never used the word in her life. I’d be even more surprised if this was never brought to light at some point in her career and I’d be extra surprised if it wasn’t causing a boisterous buzz within the Black community.

Yet, I simply don’t understand the public outrage in response to this incident when we are facing real issues and are at near calamity level in terms of useful education, viable employment, economic conditions and visibility within the political machine. At least in Canada this is the reality. I’m perplexed at the amount of people who are willing to raise their voices in protest to the bigotry coming from a food network employee yet can’t get their mouths open when it happens systematically within our classrooms, boardrooms and in our very own communities.
Now, this is not a pass and I’m not inferring that she should get away with what she did because our expectations of her should have been lower in the first place. What I am saying is that we must tire of these distractions and focus on the things which will inevitably propel us forward. Yes, I do believe this is a distraction. If this woman and her family are the biggest bigots in America; So. That’s their prerogative. As long as she isn’t cooking up and serving Black folks with some cheese grits and steamed collard greens, I couldn’t care less. She’s a branded millionaire. She can retire into obscurity and disappear from the public eye forever and my heart will never miss a beat. It effects me in no way and it effects you in no way either however; what it does do is spark useful dialogue to enhance the pixels of the bigger picture.

Get this angry when you spot structural racism within your respective cities, suburbs and communities. Cry foul when your local school district is still teaching Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliet” when Hurston’s “Their Eyes Were Watching God” is just as beautiful a love story and with just as challenging language vernacular to boot. Cry foul when your local business solicit our patronage yet they have nobody which looks like us working within their establishments. Which is why I prefer to support Black business but as usual, I digress.
You want to see change? Stop your own Black children and your friends from using this word. Stop giving our own people a pass! Black people have fought and struggled for freedom and to be physically free from bondage yet mentally enslaved with the verbal remnants of degradation is pathetic. I hate the word n*gger. I grew up in a black community where it wasn’t just taboo, it was unfathomable to utter such filth.
How degrading and I truly believe that when Black people say it, they are out of touch with their pride, identity and personal integrity. Further proof that re-education ought to be at the top our our collective priority list.

All in all, I’m upset that I can no longer cook along with Ms. Deen because I can’t in good conscious support an admitted bigot and I hear they fired her anyway. But, one monkey don’t stop the show and I refuse to allow this distraction to get in between me and my good priorities and those are to do my part in shaping a positive future for myself and the loves of my life; My People.

Oh and one more thing, the media is calling for her to donate millions to the NAACP and other “ethnic” institutions in retribution for her actions. I say BS; If money is accepted from the same hand that was only yesterday trying to dress Black folks up like a scene out of “The Help”, then we should stay on mute an sit idly by while the Paula Deens and the Ms. Hilly’s of the world say it like they mean it while we eat their sh*t.

Always remember, Light reflected is enlightenment infinite.
~Rachelle

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Thoughts On Re-Educating Our Children.

re-education

For the last few weeks my articles have focused on the mis-education of our children so today, I’m going to postulate my antithesis.
I want to talk about my platform of re-education and the benefits that I believe will help re-define our social conditioning, strengthen our communities and broaden our cultural perception as Black Canadians.
When I talk about re-education, I’m speaking in terms of the following.

1) Academically:
Through exposure to Black literature and the teachings of Black professionals, scholars , authors, experts, social commentary etc., we can better guide our children along the pathways for learning with examples of scholarship from those who came blazing the trail before them. We can then introduce a multitude of career options that may not be offered or advertised within the traditional education model. For example, agricultural science; we elders ought to educate and encourage our children about land ownership, commercial farming, nutritional, environmental and dietary sciences. These are career paths which are not typically encouraged and but, why not when most of us came from agrarian and agricultural societies?

2) Economic & Financial Sciences:
“The definition of education for Black students is the; The art of teaching our children to acquire, protect and maintain power.” (Dr. U. Johnson) This is where we need to focus on the shift from working for to owning and operating their own successful business ventures. We must encourage entrepreneurship and calculated risk taking in terms of building viable Black owned business and not simply training them to be employees. We must encourage our children to support Black owned businesses, enterprises and social services so that we can begin to acquire financial and therefore political power within and over our communities. Remember, children grow up and being fully functioning, productive, pro-active and capable citizens is their right and the essence of truly being free.

3) Understanding Political Science and The Law:
There simply isn’t enough representation for Black people BY black people in Canadian politics. Other ethnic groups seemed to have realized the importance of political visibility but, even with the election of Barack Obama to the US presidency, this is slow to become a priority within Canadian society.
We must start seriously learning about the laws that govern this land if we are to ever slow the rate of our youth falling off the beaten track and landing in jail cells. Our children need to learn about the correlation between poverty, crime and punishment so they can practice critical and logical thinking about their choices and ultimately their futures.

4) Social Sciences:
Unifying, appreciating and protecting the family unit. Understanding acceptable social etiquette, manners, behavior and teaching our children to practice a standard of conduct which dispels negative stereotypes about our youth and Black people in general and also discourages racial discrimination. Learning to be good denizens of our communities, the environment and socially responsible people is the foundation for their personal integrity and cultural pride. We need to build and encourage solidarity.

I believe that a focus on re-education in these four areas but not limited to these four areas is a great way to forward a healthy and bright future for Black Canadians.
I believe that “Black History Month” and it’s inadequacies should be done away with and instead, principles and foundations for permanent Black Cultural Education instilled at every step of the education and learning process. The Blacklit101 workshops that I am designing for the fall 2013 will be a step in the right direction for our children.

It takes a village to raise a child so if you can contribute to this educational venture in any way, please reach out to me! Any input, assistance, time and insight is welcomed and truly appreciated.
One day, our children will likely be better parents than we are because of it.

Light reflected is enlightenment infinite.
~Rachelle

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Bad Mother

Do Better
Stop pretending that you’re deeper than you are
When your vocabulary’s bland and your vision
sub-par

Please believe that you will reap what you sow
When your children can’t read their
average below

Quit neglecting the ones you brought onto this Earth
It sure wasn’t my tax funds who
gave birth

How can you deny and take life for a joke
You think you’re a dime but you stay
on #teambroke

Steady in the hair shop and getting them nails did
But you don’t make the time and read to
Your kids

Knowing this about You should make You inflamed!
You’re too busy trickin’ to even
Be shamed

Your job is to teach them about their self-wealth
All you’ve been doing’s making them
Hate themselves

One day you’ll feel it, one day you’ll see
When the secret is out that your babes
Hate mommy…

Rachelle M. Turple
*From “The Bad Parent Verses”. More to come…

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Spoiling is essentially RUINING your children.

spoiled brat

spoil

verb, spoiled or spoilt, spoil·ing, noun

verb (used with object)

1. to damage severely or harm (something), especially with reference to its excellence, value, usefulness, etc.: The water stain spoiled the painting. Drought spoiled the corn crop.

2. to diminish or impair the quality of; affect detrimentally: Bad weather spoiled their vacation.

3. to impair, damage, or harm the character or nature of (someone) by unwise treatment, excessive indulgence, etc.: to spoil a child by pampering him.

The topic for this article came about during a recent discussion with a good friend of mine. We were conversing about the resolve to not spoil our children due to the disgusting effects spoiling has on the attitude of the child and worst, how dangerous it is to instill an undeserved sense of entitlement into a child.

According to the above definition of spoiling courtesy of dictionary.com, spoil essentially means ruin. Now, I’m not telling anyone how to raise their kids, that’s on you. This is strictly a matter of opinion based on experience and personal ideology. It is your right to raise your child as you see fit and if spoiling them rotten is your thing, power to You! HOWEVER, it then becomes your responsibility to ensure that decent morals, values, principles and work-ethic  are instilled into that child to combat the negative effects of over indulgence.

In other words, recognize that in spoiling your child, you may in fact ruin them so, as parents we must find a way to create a balance that is healthy to the development of the personal integrity of that child.

In re-educating our children, perhaps it’s time to take a new approach to how we reward our children. For example, many of us grew up knowing that come June, if we passed we would get a present for “grading”. In my house, I say “HELL NO! Your present IS grading.”  The attention you paid in class, the hard work you did and the homework and projects you handed in on time resulted in you passing on to the next grade and this is your reward. Everything that you learned that propelled you to the next level in your academic achievement is your reward. This is my personal philosophy.

Look at it like this; Every day us responsible parents come home from work and prepare meals, sit through countless hours of homework and test preparation, help with last minute projects, practice for spelling tests you name it. There is no reward for this other than knowing that we’ve done our duty in supporting our children and that through our engagement and support, they stand a better chance of becoming successful in their endeavors. We’ve simply done what we are responsible for doing.  You don’t get a prize for doing what you’re supposed to do. Not in the real world where the majority of us dwell. That’s just how life is. I believe that early in life, kids need to learn this and deal with it. 

In spoiling our children, we are creating sociopathic monsters; Ignorant, name-brand-clad-shallow-tech-junkie-no manner- having little fools running around believing that everyone owes them something and never learning that hard work, dedication and commitment are the only things that will get them anywhere in life.

We know that spoiling our children is detrimental in various ways and encourages negative behavior, immaturity and dependence. But, when we spoil our children with reward systems for doing things that they should already be doing for themselves, i.e. household chores, homework, good test results, grades and such, we undermine the natural course of developing positive self-esteem, confidence, independence and responsibility through following a task through to completion simply because that is what is required. This is how our children learn the coping skills necessary for success in society.

Begin teaching your children that through diligence and assiduity; they can dominate any industry in the global market and be as successful as the icons they idolize.

Spoil them with modelling positive behaviors, encouragement, inspiration, enthusiasm, and most importantly, leadership. Guide them along the pathway to achieving their dreams.

If after reading this you’re not on-board to quit ruining your child, that’s fine though, at least consider the “rewards, treats, presents and tokens of appreciation” you give. Instead of material things, instead invest in science, math and writing tutors so when it’s time for graduation they’ll have done well enough in school to access more scholarship money. You’ll save a fortune in the long run! Invest in music lessons and sports to help build their confidence and shape their attributes and strong points. Spoil them with listening to their plans and believing in their goals. Spoil them by enriching their exposure to the arts and to life in general so that they become well-rounded whole individuals.        This is ultimately what our children deserve, they are entitled to this.

Think about why you are spoiling your children. Is it to make up for something? To shut them up? To make yourself feel better? To keep up with the Jones’? Whatever your excuse is, fix it. Do something about it before it’s too late and your monster turns on you and everybody else in society and we fight back. Think of the consequences a negative and foul attitude brings.  Remember the lazy person you can’t stand at work and the other takers you know in your lives. Do you want someone to paint your offspring with that brush? You’re not doing your child any favors when you spoil them. Home disabilities can quickly turn into learning and life disabilities. You know better so do better.

Besides, we ought to love our children enough to not proactively ruin them.

Light reflected is enlightenment infinite.

~Rachelle 

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I am not an angry Black woman.

Mad Black Woman

Why is it when a black woman is passionate about something that she believes in, she’s suddenly mad or angry? Difficult? Obtuse? Rude? Defensive? Scary?

I recently had a conversation with someone about obtaining space in my community for a Black Literature workshop that I’m facilitating in the fall. I was contacted and asked to explain the nature of my workshop and the W5 on what it will be about. When I very patiently, pleasantly and professionally explained what the plan of programming would be, the conversation turned dramatically.

A ‘pleasant’ conversation went from 0-99 in less than 2 minutes. All of I sudden, I could tell that no matter what my plans were, they were not welcome at least by this one gate-keeper. Without getting into the meat and potatoes of the discussion, long story short; I was reminded of why I never wanted to pursue a career in the public school machine.

First and foremost, I make no apologies for my stance on how the public school system is designed for us to fail. I am a product of the aforementioned system and therefore can attest to the systematic foolishness promoted and “taught” from within. Therefore, if I am of the opinion that our Black children can and will benefit from the support of private programs geared specifically toward them and only them and designed by the very people who from whom they are the essence; That’s my prerogative.

This little run-in with this gate-keeper has simply reinforced my mistrust of outside influence from school board officials and people who do not belong to the Black community.

Allow me to clarify, in regards to this initiative; Any and all brainstorming, discussion, collaboration, financing, strategizing, planning and actioning will be completely FUBU and that is FOR US BY US. We have allowed too many hands to stir our pots for too long and it simply hasn’t gotten us anywhere. I can write my fingers to the bone discussing the reasons why I believe that there is a need to re-segregate components of our Black children’s learning environments to restore the educational deficit that have resulted from the public school and the traditional private schools but why?

If you are a Black person or Black parent reading this, you already understand because you’ve experienced it at some point or another no matter what level of success you’ve attained. If you are not a Black person or the parent of a Black child and you are reading this, then no matter what I write, you will never be able to comprehend the chasm of ignorance that is being purposely created in the formal education system in North America.  You have likely always been taught by people who look like you and attended institutions that were designed with your future in mind. We don’t have this in common and it’s ok. It is what it is but, I’m not going to be ‘inclusive’ for fear of being politically incorrect and making someone feel left out. If you’re being left out of the conversation, it’s on purpose because the conversation simply doesn’t concern you. I’m not angry, I just happen to love, care for and feel the innate need to protect and nurture my own and I value those things much more than I fear offending anyone else’s sensibilities or their insecurities about not being included.

 It’s foolish, naïve, silly and downright stupid to EXPECT middle class people who do not look like our children to educate our children. PERIOD.

Now, after having said all of that, I am still working on securing a venue for the first workshop that is completely independent of the PDSB school board or entity which is an obvious conflict of interest. Which segues into my upcoming article:

 “WE NEED AN INDEPENDANT BLACK PARENTS ASSOCIATION IN PEEL REGION!”

I haven’t written it yet but wait for it. It’s coming soon my people. One idea, one action at a time…

I’ll keep you posted and as always,

Light reflected is enlightenment infinite.
~Rachelle

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OUR Black children are dying!!

ː̗̀☀̤̣̈̇ː̖́Ƈƕíƞƙƴː̗̀☀̤̣̈̇ː̖́✗o✗o Getting Fit...

I believe that OUR Black children are dying. (Now that I have your attention, I want you to start following this blog right now… Continue.)

When God blesses us with the gift of our children, God also passes the responsibility of educating those children into our care.

But they are dying Mentally, Spiritually and Physically.

 Their minds and spirits are being systematically murdered and it is inevitably leading to the physical death of our children. When our children die, our generations are assaulted, denigrated and further subjugated. It’s as simple as that and as Black Canadian people, we should take major issue with this phenomenon. We are not helpless. We must not continue to stand so placidly by. We can do something.
As parents and as responsible community members, we must put an end to the destruction of the minds of our Black children.

The purpose of this forum is not to debate the goings on of the past nor to discuss things for which we have no control over however, putting an end to the systematic mis-education of our children, our most valuable commodities, I believe is of the utmost importance.
I do believe that it is our God-given onus to educate and thus save our children. I believe that if our children are going to stand a chance at becoming adequately prepared to hold complete free agency over their own destinies and not merely prepared to be employees and the unremarkable hired help; We must take up the torch.
First and foremost, I think that it’s time we rewrite the definition of education for Black people.
I quote Dr. Umar Johnson, “Education for Black children should be the art of teaching our children to acquire, protect and maintain power.” I concur.         We must consistently work to see the shift from working for to dominating. It’s happened across the spectrum from sport to sport and in the entertainment industry so why not in the classroom and then on to the boardroom?

Why are we allowing our children to be taught to work for XYZ company instead of arming and equipping them with the knowledge and power to create, build and control businesses that compete with XYZ company?

We need to build a new educational environment for our children. Remember those Cultural Comfort Zones I wrote about creating a few weeks back? This is what I was getting at people!!! I have long believed that education should be a function of the community and it’s members and therefore, as parents we need to be talking about taking education reform into our own capable hands and building our own schools.
When I say this, I’m speaking metaphorically, somewhat anyway. Schools, learning, teaching and ultimately EDUCATING can happen in a variety of places. But, in order to teach our children what we believe they need to be learning, it’s time we took matters into our own hands and revolutionize something that has simply never worked for us and that is putting the responsibility of our education into the hands of those who have an alternate agenda.

As a Black parent of Black children, I feel that I am qualified to hold an opinion on this crisis and I invite You dear reader to mount up and fight the good fight with me.

We simply need to stand in the gap for our children.

In my upcoming articles, I will be revealing plans for a pilot program in the fall introducing our kids to some important Black Literature standards and getting the wheels turning for some grass-roots learning right here in Brampton Ontario! I’m very excited about this private venture into Black education.
I’m interested to know what you think about these ideas and your input is welcomed, valued and appreciated.

As always, light reflected is enlightenment infinite.
~Rachelle                                                                                                                                    About Me

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Filed under African Canadian, Black Canadian, Black Educators, Black Literature, Black Youth, Brampton, Brampton Ontario, Education, Literacy, Musings, Ontario, Ontario Curiculum, Parents, Uncategorized

Why haven’t YOU learned anything?

“Man that school shit is a joke
The same people who control the school system control
The prison system, and the whole social system
Ever since slavery, nawumsayin?”

These Schools                                                                                                                                         ~Dead Prez

Mis-Education

Consider These Challenges…

Do You believe that as parents, it is our primary responsibility to educate our children or, are you of the mindset that it is perfectly acceptable to turn our Black children over to the public school system and have that duty outsourced?

Do You believe that our children can effectively learn from people who do not look like them and may not be truly committed to educating that child.

Do You believe that your children will and can rise to the level of your expectations? What are the expectations you have for your children? Do You believe that they matter to your child?

Do You believe that if the educator doesn’t truly care about or value the child being taught, that they are then unable to grow that child academically?

Do You believe that the real reason many of our children are not learning is because the people responsible for their learning couldn’t care less?

Do You believe that children need to feel content, valued, wanted and comfortable before they can effectively learn?

Do You believe that education content and curriculum today is relevant?

Do You believe that negative stereotypes are affecting the quality of education our Black children are receiving?

Do You believe that the mis-education of our children is not on purpose?

Do You believe that there is a deliberate and systematic effort to eliminate preparation for life after high school for Black people?

Do You believe that access to opportunity is equal across the board?

Do You believe that racism is no longer a threat to your son or daughter’s education and career opportunities?

What do YOU believe?

I urge You, dear reader to please leave honest feedback and comments on this as it was posted to inspire conversation and I’m interested to know your thoughts on these questions. This is an open forum designed to help us unite as parents, educators and social activists on the battlefield to stand in the gap for our children.

Light reflected is enlightenment infinite.

~Rachelle

PS! I urge you to try and get a copy of the below book by Dr. Umar Johnson. I will be adding it and a few others to our ‘Black Literature’ list that I have been very neglectful in growing!!!

Umar Johnson

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Filed under African Canadian, Black Canadian, Black Educators, Black Literature, Black Youth, Education, Literacy, Musings, Ontario, Parents