Through the eyes of one African American

William T. Robinson, Jr.

William T. Robinson, Jr.

I feel the need to share my subjective view as an African American on the current status of African Americans here in America. You may agree or disagree, but if it brings about thought and discussion, I feel it would have met my objective.

I don’t think you will find another person prouder to be an American citizen than myself. Make no mistake, I love this country and it is my love for this country that makes me fight for it to be an example of what it should and can be.

Because of my love for this country, I cannot idly stand by accepting a status quo that systemically promotes discrimination and racial inequality. I see it in laws, policies, and practice that disproportionately target disadvantaged people and people of color, especially African Americans.

I see prospering institutions and companies founded on the sweat and blood of slaves continuing to keep the wealth among themselves, while offering a few Africans Americans top executive jobs—if they feel you show a loyalty to Eurocentric views and practices. I see inequity in the education system, limiting many children academic success based on their parent or parent’s economic status, the community they live in, or the color of their skin.

I see an educational system that for the most part ignores or dilutes the true history of people of color for the purpose of not upsetting or making White children feel uncomfortable. But it seems quite acceptable for African Americans children to walk around with low self-esteem, hating who they are, and so willing to hurt or kill people who look like them.

I see too many troubled African American youth and adults adjudicated to the penal system, a system liken to slavery, often profiting on the number of beds filled. The saddest part of this situation is that many of the problems plaguing those incarcerated could have been avoided if proper intervention and adequate services had been provided at an earlier age or during their formative years.

I see the ability to afford homes being used as a tool to control and segregate many communities. It is so obvious in many cities where people of color seem to be excluded, especially in upper class neighborhoods. The disparity in wealth is non debatable and the gap toward the ‘haves and have-nots’ only seems to widen.

I see the tool of diversity being used to bring everyone around the table—only to really promote assimilation to Eurocentric agendas. Truly recognizing and indoctrinating other ethnicities’ concerns in present day institutions and businesses seems only to be a formality or a smoke screen to temporarily appease those present.

I find too many African Americans accepting and adhering to the negative stereotypes applied to them. This is apparent in African Americans supporting many salacious rappers who portray us in a negative light. Adding insult to injury are the numerous African American reality shows where Black women dishonor their race with their buffoonery and lack of substance.

I see a growing number of people giving up and losing hope, especially as it pertains to things getting better for them. I see too many of our White counterparts inherently born to entitlements and privileges, making them impervious to the suffering and disparities facing other ethnic groups.

I see the need to work and advocate toward a fair distribution of wealth, to level the playing field for everyone. I feel this is necessary if this country is serious about righting its wrongs and going forward.

While I see all these things that might bring one to believe I have a doom and gloom outlook, it is to the contrary. With all the pain and disillusion I see, there has always been the presence of love, hope, and perseverance by those who make me believe in the power of human determination to overcome all obstacles.

While I wish there were many more, I have seen people of all races, sexes, and religions working to eradicate inequality and suffering among their fellow brothers and sisters.

I only wish more people who are blessed and genuinely good in heart stop acquiescing and come join us in the fight to make this country and the world what it should be. Positive and constructive activism is the conduit to promoting the changes needed to make this country better.

Call me foolish and idealistic if you want, but I feel it is our divine mandate to fight against the forces that keep us from honoring our humanity. We need more soldiers to arm themselves with righteousness and battle injustice, inequality, and human suffering. One need not participate in bringing about warranted righteous change if not accompanied with love for humanity.

This is what I personally see and feel as an African American living in this country. I refuse to believe that I’m alone in what I feel and see.