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+  Africa Speaks Reasoning Forum
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| | |-+  Creating Positive Images For Our Children
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Author Topic: Creating Positive Images For Our Children  (Read 17750 times)
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Posts: 2063

« on: May 07, 2003, 05:34:16 PM »

                     Junious Ricardo Stanton
                       Creating Positive Images For Our Children

   "The African child who never sees African people who are respectable and
dignified has difficulty learning to respect that part of themselves that
they recognize as being like Africans. If the only human beings that are
presented at them in their education are images of dignified people who are
not Africans, then they have difficulty finding mirrors of themselves in
their education. The identification with alien models is a fundamental part
of the mis-education process. So even if they may have been loved in the home
and even in some of their classrooms, there will be a defect in their
self-love if they do not find confirmation for that love and respect in their
social environment."  Na'im Akbar

    For Africans in America attempting to survive mentally, emotionally ,
spiritually and physically amidst an antagonistic and anti-African social
environment, it is imperative that we have positive images and role models
that look like us, portrayed in a respectful and dignified fashion depicting
us in empowering situations. We've had enough commercials that show black
males playing basketball, clowning around or entertaining. We do that quite
well already thank you. It's mind boggling to go to a classroom or mentoring
program and hear all the young boys say they want to be ballplayers or
rappers. Everyone can't be a professional athlete or a successful recording
artist. We need to encourage our children to expand the parameters of what
they feel is possible for themselves by expanding their imaginations. We need
to provide them and expose them to ideas and images other than those they see
in the videos, movies and in the print media.  We can show them and introduce
them to scientists, inventors, entrepreneurs, mentors and married couples
that get along and really like each other and enjoy each others company.    
   Images re-enforce notions of what is real, what is possible and what is
doable. If all our kids see are criminals on the evening news, entertainers,
rappers and actors portraying criminals and hoochie mammas engaged in
self-destructive or anti-social behavior does it strike you as strange that
that's all our youngsters aspire to be or think is possible for them?
    The Bible says "where there is no vision the people perish" Proverbs
29:18 As a people we lack an empowering social vision for ourselves. We lack
leaders who have the vision of  Marcus Garvey or Mary McCloud Bethune. Marcus
Garvey was born in 1887 in Jamaica.  After traveling around the world and
assessing the socio-political condition of African people he asked himself,
"where are the black man's captains of industry, where is the black man's
government?"  Garvey boldly set out to make them a reality. We need to see
men and women like Hildreth (Hal) and Bettye Walker founders of the
African-American Male Achievers Network Inc.  Hal Walker was a pioneer in
laser electro-optical technology who along with his wife decided to give back
to the community by starting a program to expose young children to science
and technology . Our communities need to support the work of Lady Sala
Shabazz and her Black Inventors Museum because she gives exposure to modern
African-American inventors and scientists. Our children need to see people
like her and know that these things are possible and that it is okay to be
smart and creative.
   Chiding the major television networks for not having any black
programming this fall is, in my opinion, a colossal waste of valuable time.
Especially when we consider  Hollywood's abysmal history and record of
depicting African people in demeaning stereotypical situations. Do we really
think white writers, directors and producers will offer up anything
different? We need to be more proactive. We need to support people like Tim
Reid in his efforts to produce quality films and television material. We need
to write letters not to the major networks but to BET to encourage Robert
Johnson to expand his programming and offer more substantive material other
than music videos and reruns. On the home front, we can do better. We can
replace that old picture of the white Jesus with a more accurate one. One
that looks more like us. We can proudly hang pictures of our
ancestors/relatives all over the house. We can support creativity in our own
community by purchasing black art that provides inspirational messages and
images to counter the negative images and programming the mainstream media
bombards us with twenty-four seven three sixty five.  Don't allow anyone to
trick you into believing we can't exert control over our environment! Take
the time/initiative to provide positive images and role models for the
community to see.

Junious Ricardo Stanton

                               POSITIVELY BLACK
                               Junious Ricardo Stanton
                               What Will Your Legacy Be?

   "One's mission is to give service to others and the particular of these
services is one's special mission." Na'im Akbar.

   Recently I was asked to write something for a relative's funeral. As I  
contemplated his life and what it meant, it dawned on me the he left a
magnificent legacy and model of living for us to emulate. While he lived
comfortably, he was by no means rich in money and material possessions. The
thing that stands out boldly in my mind about him was his legacy of love,
caring and service to his family, church and his fellow man. He was a man's
man yet he was a gentleman in the truest sense of the word.
   Pondering one's own mortality can be scary, if you view life from the
Eurocentric view that postulates life is merely about acquisition of material
possessions, the one with the most toys, gadgets and gizmos at the end is
declared the winner. Our Western indoctrination and programming has caused us
to view "death" as an end, the annihilation of the self. This idea that death
brings an end to one's being has been exacerbated by religious dogma that
promises either a place of bliss and reward or torment depending upon one's
behavior while alive. This concept of personal annihilation and the
consignment to hell paralyzes many of us, preventing us from living full and
productive lives. We are so afraid of dying we never get around to living
life to its fullest or actualizing our genetic potential and possibilities.
    In African and indigenous cultures death is viewed not as and end but a
continuum of the life cycle (process). It is perceived as a transition into
another realm or dimension beyond the physical but not one of total
separation from the living Ancestors are venerated and remembered for their
exemplary lives and contributions to the clan or nation. They were
ritualistically remembered, called upon and held up by the whole community,
village or nation as role models. My wife's uncle was indeed a role model a
man worthy of emulating in his demeanor and his dedicated service to the
community.. That was the consensus of all who knew him.
   What is it you would like people to say about you upon your demise? What
do you want them to say about you while you are alive and well? What do you
want to be your legacy? What do you stand for, what have you contributed to
the collective? Do you want people to talk about how much money you left, how
many suits or pairs of shoes you left? Do you want people to talk about your
business acumen, your sexual prowess, your titles or degrees? Have you every
given any thought to what your life means, why you are here and what you have
done to make this world a better place? What is your legacy, your claim to
   Each of us is born with a purpose. We are fully equipped to fulfill that
purpose, mission and destiny. What is your purpose? Do you know? What
talents, gifts, aptitudes and proclivities have you been given to assist you
in your mission? What genius is encoded in your RNA and DNA what special
uniqueness do you bring to this planet at this time that has never been
manifested before? This is the question of the hour. What do you have that
only you can give in your own way to make this world a b=finer, kinder, more
loving and beautiful place? Can you answer these questions? Does you life
demonstrate a personal awareness of you genius or a personal commitment to
actualizing your innate potential? Or does your life at this point in time
beg someone to put a sign around your neck that says. "awaiting final
   Time is of the essence. There are literally thousands who were here today
and are gone today. Although we are immortal souls we have a finite physical `
existence. We are all sojourners here. We did not come here to stay
permanently. Nevertheless we can have a lasting influence and impact. How? By
what we do every day and the way we manifest our innate divinity and genius.
The world is desperately in need of your/our gifts. If you haven't given any
previous thought to your legacy beyond making out a will for the dispersal of
your worldly possession, give it some serious thought.  What is it you want
to be remembered for? What are you doing that will make people pause, pay
respect and give thanks that you came this way?
Junious Ricardo Stanton



We should first show solidarity with each other. We are Africans. We are black. Our first priority is ourselves.
Posts: 72

« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2003, 10:22:25 PM »

My love one. I applauded this article. Well done and supportive from the sources you have used. Be it known though that the children of Rastafari are the least spoken of among the masses.
Please tune in to Empress Rootswoman piece she will be making on Rasta empresses/youths and sexuality/nudity and the powers that be. It should help to shed some light on some of the points you make. Especially on the piece of youth just wanting to be a rapper. While nothing in choosing a profession but it is what the road to being a rapper brings that note you are against. So yes! we must enlighten our children. You have quoted Marcus and rightly we should take from him the message of building ourself.
Where is Africa in the 21st Century, waiting to be delivered. How could that be when I and I know that AFrica is the land of kings and queens. I truly as a Rastaman adore your posting and I shall read it again and cipher from it the food you have in it.
Guidance... give chant for Rastafarispeaks.com the forum that truly showcase intelligence and right thinking.
I hope that I and I can see more articles of this positive from you.

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