Editor’s Note: The following story was written by a student in our Urban Youth International Journalism Program. The UYIJP is generously funded by the McCormick Foundation.
What is a perfect community? How do we really define a perfect community? From the Black perspective, a perfect community is a community with: No violence, no liquor stores owned by non-African Americans, and also people who are working within the community for the people with local business, shops, clothing stores, groceries, parks, schools, etc. Unfortunately, from my perspective, this cannot happen first of all because Black people like to stay stuck in a reality shown to them by the media. Black people and various other races live by what the media tells them is the “truth.” Second, Blacks are always in competition against others to prove that we are worth something. These things hold us back and keep us from achieving our collective goals.
So, even though we will never have a perfect community, I came up with some solutions to have a better community. My first solution to have a better community is to start with oneself. Begin to look back to your childhood and then next start to go through the things that were shown to you and were told to you. For example, look back and think of what you thought was wealth and then think of what wealth was shown to you. We have to notice that most of the things and ideas we have come from our childhood. Most of the madness that you see in your life is what you have agreed to be brought into your life and what you think is supposed to happen. For the Black community, we have to start changing our mindset of how things have been and start to speak word into what we want to see happen.
My second solution for a better community is to be more selective of what you watch in the media. Every day, news casters make a lot of money based on the numbers of viewers so if you stop watching, news companies lose ad revenue. That will teach the media to stop focusing on negative situations. We need to deprogram ourselves from what they want to show us, brainwashing us to be more in fear of the world around us.
My third solution for a better community is to stop being in competition with people from different cultures. In the song “Go to the Floor” by Missy Elliott, she says: “So all the hate and animosity between folks, you need to kill it with a skillet, you don’t see Bill Gates and Donald Trump arguing with each other because they got paper and better s*** to do. Get more paper.” From this, I take the lesson that we should stop competing with other races and our own race too. When you start to be in competition, you set yourself up to lose. We give too much power to certain things because of who we think is against us.
As a young person, I don’t know all the answers to the world’s problems but I know that it starts with the changing of how you view the world and things around you. To have peace, it has to begin as a personal choice. You will start to be amazed as to just changing how you view things can affect the way the world around you and the community will begin to form into a small piece of perfection.
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