Shape the future or live in the past, your choice.

If you a news junkie as I am you likely would have heard about a young man called Michael Brown who was shot dead by a Policeman, Officer Wilson in Ferguson, USA. The story dominated the News for sometime, there was nothing more important during the broadcast of this story as it highlighted Black vs. white tensions in America. To those that do not follow the News and care little for issues, bear with me as I try show you how the story has affected me and still bugs me, it’s a real eye opener. I am really shocked that in this day and age we still look at issues through the skin lens and struggle to talk about Black and White issues.

I was born in Africa, I attended school with white kids, our neighbors were white, my school teachers (some) were white so to me racism was never an issue. My parents and relatives told me stories about racism and the only time, growing up that I ever confronted racism was in a textbook and via my parents experiences. I never saw or found a reason to hate anyone who was not the same skin tone or color as I was because I was told we are now equal. They may have been issues before I was born but now in my day all people are equal and there is none superior. Yes some were rich but for me it mattered not that they were rich, heck I did not even know why it was an issue as I was in the same school as the so-called rich kids.

Years I completed my college education, I was still of the mind that I was equal to anyone who I competed with in my generation, all I had to do was work a little harder than most and I would make it to the top. How could I see color, my barber was from India, my favorite grocery store was called Desire, run by an East Indian family, my mothers’ friend was Mrs. Drinkwater, very Caucasian, and the Minster of Education for my nation at that time was Asian, how could I see color.

Now to Michael Brown, 2014, I am now 35 years old and I am listening to a News Anchor talk about how there is still tension due to the racial divide in the Nation. Black folk have been marginalized says the Anchor, they feel that the system has been unfair and the racial tensions are real and threaten the Nation. Wow, 2014 we are still dealing with post slavery issues. The News is plastered with stories that do not make sense, let me name a few for you

1. Boy (black) with a toy gun is shot dead by police officer (white)

2. Man (black) wrongly arrested is assaulted by the Police (white) and accidental leaves his blood on cops uniform but is charged for damaging police Property because of his blood on the officer’s uniform.

3. Young man (black) going home is profiled and killed by a neighborhood watch officer (Not sure if he was Hispanic but surely George Zimmerman was not black)

4. Professor (black) at his residence is confronted by a police officer (white) The most interesting thing in all this is that the victims are black, coincidence?.

We can debate all day long if these issues show racism or not but the bottom line is something is wrong. As a society the time is now to heal, the time is now to come together because the issues that affect both white & black issues are bigger than color and will take ideas and all races to solve. Surely we can agree that the SIDE EFFECTS of all the issues raised by racial tension are bad if not dangerous.

Our generation can stand up and make a difference or we can join the nose and talk about how in the 1800s some people were deprived of freedom. Don’t get me wrong, slavery was pathetic, it was nasty but as I advised before, it now belongs in a book as history. What has already happened we cannot change, what will happen is a different matter. We can be spectators and be history or we can be active and make history. We can come together all races and work for a better society and a better world as opposed to debating how the white men was wrong to have slaves.

My mentality has not changed, if I work a little harder than most, I can make it to the top. I do not seek a level playing ground, I make life work, I do not let life happen to me. My future is in my hands, I know I cannot give myself life, that is Gods job, I fight for the life I lead on this earth, that is my portion. Funny, those who think they can, they will, those who think they cannot, they won’t. The choice is yours, you can either shape the future and work in building it or you can be history and talk about the past. Life is for living, live it.

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