Every day now it seems like some black man or some black woman is being falsely accused, overcharged, beaten, choked or shot down in broad daylight.
After almost every incident, somebody rushes to Facebook or Twitter to post what black community members should do in response to neighborhood atrocities.
We are told not to protest, not to fight, not to
burn, not to loot, not to riot, not to participate in civil disturbances, not to get involved in mayhem and not to treat perpetrators the way perpetrators treat black victims.
We are, however, told to follow our leaders.
Well, all of the “leaders” that I know were either self-appointed or given their leadership titles by enemies of the black community, like the imperialist press, better known as majority media outlets.
Just because you have a title, it doesn’t make you a leader. Just because you are a preacher, a teacher, a politician, a social worker or an organization president, it doesn’t mean that you are the leader of any black community.
No disrespect to the people who have titles, have been elected or have been appointed. It is obvious the most accomplished in our community can certainly contribute in the community’s time of need.
But everybody can contribute and we need everybody to contribute in our fight for equal rights, justice, respect, recognition and a better way of life.
This idea that black Christians are leaders and black Muslims, black Yorubas and other black religious practitioners are not is crazy. The idea that black doctorates are leaders and black farmers, black housekeepers and black folk who are uneducated and unemployed can’t lead is preposterous.
And, the idea that black Democrats and black Republicans are leaders and black independents, blacks with no party affiliation and black nationalists are not leaders is a devilish idea that must be immediately discredited and abandoned.
We need all members of America’s black communities to unite and work together to solve black community problems. We need the pacifists and we need the revolutionaries. We need the radicals and we need the conservatives. We need the quiet and we need the outspoken. We need the meek and we need the mighty. We need the able and we need the disabled.
It takes a community, or a village, to raise a child, as the saying goes, and it takes a community to improve a community, to make it prosperous, to make it safe and to make it educated.
If you see a so-called “leader” in your community telling you that no one’s opinion should be considered or heard except for his or hers, that so-called leader should be exposed and rejected.
You don’t need social media or white newspapers to tell you who the black community leader is in times of trouble. The black sheep will always recognize the voice of the black shepherd. Follow the leaders who follow the truth.
Lucius Gantt, a political consultant based in Tallahassee, is author of the book Beast Too: Dead Man Writing which is available at Amazon.com. You can like The Gantt Report page on Facebook and contact Gantt at www.allworldconsultants.net