Civil Rights: The Fight to be Equal with God

Selma_to_Montgomery_MarchesTo be discriminated against in America is so common that those who live in the wake of it come to expect it in some form or another daily if they are awakened to see it. In fact, to be black in America is rough, difficult to be so; however, the problem is not the people who are progenitors of racism and discrimination it is the people who believe themselves equal to the whites perception of themselves. This is not to say that in any way should so called blacks be continually mistreated, or to place themselves in harms way; however, to come to a realistic view and see that if white people see themselves as God in their own eyes, and they rule the country—then also in their eyes every single person that comes to America willingly or not is considered to be, or should become a servant. Consequently,  there is a problem with thinking that everyone should be a servant, and the problem with that thought is those who feel that way have a tendency to mistreat people. Another view is that people who are descendants of slave owners typically have a mindset that America, the nation is theirs because they built it, and that if their money paid for the country to become great; then  regardless of how they came about that money while committing immoral acts against mankind in their minds they are God, that is, God has the money, God owns the land, God writes the policy, God is America’s Dream, and because of this thinking of themselves as God by the white people others should just look over the fact that GOD is racist. In this article there is discussion concerning current policy in regards to civil rights initiatives so called blacks pursuit to become like God.

The Fight to be like God

Of course, today, with President Obama’s position as head of the country some people  may consider that there is not discrimination any longer, or that the country has had a breakthrough since he took office, however, the election of a mixed race only adds fuel to the fact that Obama is half black and half God to the whites, or rather, a pawn to be used by those who to many in their own minds are GOD. In explanation, the CEO of the National Policy Institute, Sam Dickson (2014) spoke concerning the policy set  during the writing of the Declaration of Independence for the country’s break with their motherland Britain, In his video, “America: The God that Failed”, he said that the section of the declaration which speaks about ‘inalienable rights’ was taken off the paper of Britain’s document and placed into the American one. In that he stated that “a man without a country” cannot possibly have the type dedication to the cause of those who call America their home and built it (Dickson, 2014). Speaking frankly,  Dickson is saying that no one can be equal with God–one nation under God rule. The Civil Rights Act of 1964, was created from legislature in the First Amendment to the United States Constitution that mentions rhetoric such as ‘alienable rights given by God—life , liberty and pursuit of freedom’, and ,’ all men are created equal’; however, at the time of the signing did not include blacks. Further, a realistic view of this is that no one can be what God says he is not—equal or otherwise, and it is a fair statement to say that words written by God becomes law. Consequently, here one should be reminded that the three-fifth human clause has yet to be amended. It is the case that great strides have been made as  result of rallies of civil disobedience to God, and notably the subservient blacks did not ask for much.

Initiatives in the Fight to be like God

Dye (2010) wrote that there are differences of opinion concerning racism in the country where whites think not much of it and do not think it a problem, and blacks see it differently stating there is a serious problem with racism (Dye, 2010).  Although, civil rights issues most popular are covered in the legislation there are others that have yet to be such as police brutality which is really brutality by God in uniform and the right to not be murdered in the streets, unarmed like dogs is an ongoing pursuit. Hence, the initiatives set pertaining to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 is paled in comparison to these unsolved. More specifically, civil pursuits of equality  to be like God have been broad and include many milestones in the rights of people of color in all areas of living—mainly protection against discrimination for:  (a) publics places, but not the right to assemble peaceably, but also includes equal access to schools and or equal access to, restaurants, restrooms, (b) outlaw of Jim Crowe laws which prevented access to voting, (c) employment for black people and equal pay standards, and (d) housing which include mortgage lending discrimination and the tendency for landlords to be slum lords. Presently, however, there have been several amendments to the act which now include protection to women in the work place and working while pregnant, right to choice of healthcare, gay or sodomite marriage rights, right to not be bullied, and several court related rights that are written also but are still unequal in quality and perception in the pursuit to be God’s equal. For example, although there is legislation to state that negroes can work along side God instead of being relegated to back doors, cleaning God’s toilet or watching God’s children black women can now work alongside white women and may be as  qualified even more so in some cases or equally as qualified but still make less than their non black colleagues. Additionally, black women and men are lowest paid who work along side their white colleagues, and who all are degreed status; however, here is where the inequality lies, that is, blacks chosen last over whites and even if chosen are paid considerably less than whites and this occurrence can happen in the hiring process. In explanation consider the following scenario:

A local auto parts company is hiring for a management position. After the interviews, however, the Human Resources Department has narrowed the search for a manager down to two candidates who both hold the degreed status required for the position, and they both have the required amount of management experience needed– their names are Christopher Columbus, and Michael Spears. Hence, unable to decide between the two the hiring manager calls both in for a second interview. In the interviews; however, no salary is ever discussed, but  in a meeting between the hiring manager and her boss is where the salary for the position was initially decided that the position would pay $32,000 per year. Additionally, after the interviews the team decides that they will not hire Christopher Columbus and call Michael in for a third and final interview where they will offer his package at that time. Subsequently, at the interview they tell Michael that the position pays $10.00 an hour which is $19,200 per year instead of the $32,000 a year that the hiring managers had previously planned to offer. Hence, this begs the question and asks why? It is the case, that not only is Michael an African American but the team sees that as a chance to save money, and decided that he has the skills needed to fit the job description; however, their decision to not pay him equally as unto the white candidate because of his race is discrimination.

The Right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness equal to God

How unfortunate, that anyone living in a country as great as America would be subjugated to such biases and discrimination, and one could say that the white man was discriminated against as well, however, the opportunity will await the white over black in greater measure. Moreover,  this type discrimination is difficult to prove and applicants should obtain the ability to seek out information regarding pay in a field or for positions before applying. Generally, however, in the interview applicants are discouraged from raising questions about pay before the subject is brought up. Hence, this occurrence removes any chance of the applicant being warned concerning the agenda against them. In his address concerning women and equal pay discrimination, President Obama stated that unequal pay is not just a woman’s issue but a family issue and the aforementioned scenario addresses that more so, because men are still the heads of the household in many cases, and although in so called black families there are women who are forced into the role of head of the house there is a need for men to be paid as much as white men in the workplace so they too can take care of their families.

President Obama wrote concerning the  Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Restoration Act:

Because while this bill bears her name, Lilly knows this story isn’t just about her. It’s the story of women across this country still earning just 78 cents for every dollar men earn – women of color even less – which means that today, in the year 2009, countless women are still losing thousands of dollars in salary, income and retirement savings over the course of a lifetime. But equal pay is by no means just a women’s issue – it’s a family issue. It’s about parents who find themselves with less money for tuition or child care; couples who wind up with less to retire on; households where, when one breadwinner is paid less than she deserves, that’s the difference between affording the mortgage – or not; between keeping the heat on, or paying the doctor’s bills – or not. And in this economy, when so many folks are already working harder for less and struggling to get by, the last thing they can afford is losing part of each month’s paycheck to simple discrimination. So in signing this bill today, I intend to send a clear message: That making our economy work means making sure it works for everyone. That there are no second class citizens in our workplaces, and that it’s not just unfair and illegal – but bad for business – to pay someone less because of their gender, age, race, ethnicity, religion or disability. And that justice isn’t about some abstract legal theory, or footnote in a casebook – it’s about how our laws affect the daily realities of people’s lives: their ability to make a living and care for their families and achieve their goals (Obama, 2015).

Notably, the pursuit in the fight to be equal to God is ongoing for both genders of the black race, and future policies should reflect change in the areas of: (a) three fifth human amendment, (b) raising the minimum raise, (c) equal fair pay for black men and women, according to their educational level, and more thought and effort placed on anti-bullying legislation to include police brutality.

In the strides to become equal to God, blacks have not gained strides equal to whites in the fifty plus years of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 execution. Moreover, in the shadow of the attitude of  whites in America blacks made a huge mistake in the supposed fight of equality, that is, that God cannot accept the people who they crossed the Atlantic to steal them  from their families, a people of culture, of a continent of African people who were sold into slavery. In addition, so called blacks would be wise to remember that in the eyes of America the slaves cannot be equal to their master whether in education, the workplace, health or welfare, that the servant is not equal to their God, and pursuit to find a place equal is for the white man a dream but for the black man in America who covet such a place has become a nightmare. That a said the pursuit continues.

Related Articles

 America: The God that Failed

Dye, T.R. (2010).  Understanding public policy (13th ed.).  Longman: Pearson Prentice Hall. ISBN: 9780205757428. Custom ISBN: 9781256054160

 Strengthening Civil Rights 

Civil Rights Issues

The Good News: Civic Journalism and Building the Community

civic JournalismAn American Journalist and Humorist once wrote, “The Job of the newspaper is to comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. (Steele, 2002, Para. 1). In this view, the role of the reporter is two- faceted: 1) the reporter must shake up those who are comfortable, and 2) the reporter must comfort those who need it by offering a helping hand, or at least educate their public by bringing in new information to those in need of it. According to Executive Director, Pew Center for Civic Journalism there are two key things to know concerning Civic Journalism which says” when the media does its job differently, citizens do their jobs differently, and when you seed innovation into newsrooms you get new ideas”. (Schaffer, 2014). Hence, if reporting today is not bringing affliction and/ or comfort then it is not good news. What can be done about it? Schaffer (2014) makes mention that there a few things to be done which could go beyond diagnosing the problem. Therefore, diagnose the cause but move on and actually change that which has already been diagnosed. Conversely, one would have to see clearly the picture that journalism has portrayed to the masses which means going back to review what the public sees and why they see it that way. Hence, making changes which should be of first priority. Once a problem is identified there should be efforts made which bring improvement and understanding to public thinking that change the relation of the media as a ‘lap dog,’ of the media as an ‘attack dog,’ and ultimately change the media as a ‘watch dog’ to something other than a farce. Essentially, American media must be seen as the “guide dog’ which educates the public on their role to help their own communities and beyond.

A survey conducted by the Pew Center for Civic Journalism reflects journalists’ view of the First Amendment saying that some journalists hold their rights to freedom of press in high regard more than the public did. On the contrary, citizens feel differently toward the media and label the press arrogant, insensitive, biased, inaccurate and sometimes filled with sensationalism. Conversely, “fifty-three percent respondents said they believe the press has too much freedom, forty-five percent respondents said they believe media protects democracy, and thirty-eight percent of the respondents said the media actually hurt democracy.” Additionally, there were people who disapproved of reporting political candidates, hidden cameras, and publishing governmental secrets. (Schaffer, 2014, p.9-10. Para. 7). Consequently, this data might be surprising for some, however, it shows that America citizens are divided in their opinion of the media, and also shows what journalist think of their work is totally off base. Especially, in regards to news gathering as it pertains to truth of how citizens really feel about the news and those who report it which causes resentment for citizens who feel they are unheard.

On April 15, 2014, an accident on Interstate NE Loop 820 shook a community leaving two dead people and others injured in Fort Worth, Texas. (Read: Two Killed in Crash Along East Loop 820). The neighborhood was shaken, not only from the force of the impact, but from the force of the ideal. People witness to the accident or nearby could be seen running from their homes and motorists stopping to help. It is the case that a community came together but was left to pick up these pieces alone, but this has become the norm there. The crash involving three vehicles was the worst incident to happen in the Stop Six community since the notorious “Birthday Party” shootings in 2008 which left a five year old child dead on her birthday; along with, her paternal grandmother, and several other innocent children and adults in attendance. (Read more: 2 dead in birthday party shooting in Fort Worth). In both of the events, the reporters, helicopters could be seen coming from miles around, hovering over people’s homes to gather their stories and taking interviews from witnesses. Notably, once the initial reports were broadcast the neighborhoods were forgotten which leaves one to ask what about the neighborhood? There has not been any attention since for media coverage for the community though there has been plenty newsworthy material such as council meetings where neighbors meet with officials from time to time to discuss issues which have not been met or that need attention. However, these type meetings are generally campaign ventures and sparse. It is the case that the only reports in certain neighborhoods are of a negative undertone, a killing, a domestic issue when someone is killed, a child kills their parent, a sexual offender nearby and so on. Notably, though that type news is necessary people already know that their neighborhoods are not the best and that most are unsafe. Therefore, good news would bring with it an appeal for public support and someone who can report that appeal accurately is needed. To date, there is still no follow up interviews for the families in attendance of the birthday party to know how they fare and this is where media responsibility to update the public is a needed for any mass tragedy of this magnitude. Moreover, there seems to be a drive through type reporting as far as media is concerned. Additionally, though these incidents might seem small concerning the accident and the birthday party this is the type reporting seen in the neighborhoods where reportedly violence is common. Therefore, however common whether an accident or murder no other news seems newsworthy material. Where are the caring journalists to tell the story?
One of the reasons the lack of report might seem difficult in certain communities would be a lack of journalist support and lack of journalistic staff. Typically, one might see minority commentators, anchors and reporters here and there, however, why are they so scare? Concerning BBC and black journalist, Meikle (2014) wrote “A senior black journalist has accused the BBC of” institutional myopia or inertia “over its employment of ethnic minority staff” (Para.1). In this instance, one might wonder what this has to do with the general public and reporting. The problem is confusion in the work place where many journalists find themselves clamoring for rank instead of clamoring to get stories that matter. Hence, instead there are stories of hometown heroes and those deemed fitting for community efforts, but no reports of how to solve eminent or impeding problems. It is the case that with few journalists to work stories, or who find interest to report stories are pushed to quit such organizations as BBC. Of course, BBC being global is a far cry from everyday life in a community; however, one should ask does this type behavior occur everywhere? Therefore, the type of behavior as found in drive by reporting styles may prove a huge factor lacking in community building efforts.
In the article, “The Last Days of Journalism” Nip (2008) employed at a least 6 different ways media could change audience view or to offer a helping hand:
• Listening to the public to help shape the news agenda
• Giving ordinary people a voice
• Covering storing in a way which facilitates public understanding and stimulates citizen deliberation of problems behind the stories
• Presenting news to make it more accessible and easier for people to engage in the issues
• Engaging the community in problem solving
• Maximizing the impact of coverage in the community
Listening to the public is almost non-existent when it comes to some communities. Hence, a great idea would be to gather ideas developed from mingling with people in their communities in times separate from campaigning. Notably, politicians always have a say about certain issues, but what about the communities these bills and policies affect most? It is the case, then, that the only time some citizens have an opportunity to speak is in tragedy, or an election year and those meetings handpicked. Nip (2008) adds, “Listening techniques include conducting polls, surveys, town hall meetings, focus groups, readers’ panels, and organizing intimate living room or kitchen conversations.” (p. 180). Therefore, giving a voice to ordinary people would make a world of difference when people’s input seems important. Thames (2014) wrote “Unlike journalists who earn a living covering politics, voters have a lot of other things competing for their attention — at home and at work. We’ve been quick to misjudge their unfocused nature as ambivalence. Most take their role quite seriously. Times Mirror found last year that 66% of Americans “completely agree” it is their duty to always vote, up from 46% in 1987.” (Line 7). It is the case that the media might take for granted that people casting votes have a voice. For example, one should ask how is it that with all the lines formed during an election is anyone not heard from, except politicians. During campaigning Wendy Williams advocated women’s health issues which included a right to choose and single parenting support. It would have been a great add if during the campaign there were voices heard on the other side of those issues; as like, women who have had abortions to balance out information and give the people an informed decision. Conversely, attack ads make people distrustful and mean spirited which is another reason why the media is not well liked.
Radio is great for community discussions and forums and though good sources of information one should ask are there solutions to come from these? Rudy Vee is on the air and has been a full time Professional Announcer for the COX MEDIA GROUP in Jacksonville, Florida for 22 years. Rudy was asked what issues of a public concern he believed needed the most help from media. He wrote, “Public safety. Especially for women. We, as announcers, are here to educate and inform. That premise has long fallen by the wayside to commercialism. Now, there are insignificant Sunday morning programs to comply to FCC regulations regarding this. Don’t get me wrong, the music IS the star; but radio could be doing so much more. There are a couple of cats, Gregg Street in Atlanta and Jamming Jimmy Olsen in Tyler that are using their shifts for the greater purpose of super-serving the community and kids. But very few are allowed to do this anymore? Also, we could a heck of a lot more in supporting the local artists in the market. But, once again, if it ain’t chartin,’ chances are it won’t get played. we also need to be doing more for the classic artist of our time that are still putting out art. The Con-Funk-Shun’s, the Lakeside’s, the Will Downing’s, the Glenn Jones’, the Howard Hewett’s. The cats are still putting out quality classic art – but to no avail.” (Vee, 2014). Ultimately, more broadcasts and reports need to reflect Mr. Vee’s thinking that the communities need more help from the media. Mr. Vee also added input concerning journalism and good reporters. He was asked, “What is the current state of the radio ‘talent pool?’ Is good Journalism being shelved along with good pay? His response, “WOW! Umph…No comment (Sorry)” That says it all.
Journalist engagement with the community in problem solving is a big issue for some, and education is a key ingredient. In the aforementioned Stop Six area as well as other areas of the city homeowners have found their property taken in  pay arrangements where the city offers one year of payment with balances due at the end of a year. In this, there is no education about the home owner’s right to acquire counsel from an attorney who would give them adequate information about property tax law and their ability to get a longer arrangement. Consequently, without that help many people have faced eviction. It is the case that anyone can find this information in any public record if they knew to look. Therefore, news coverage would benefit the community if those concerned could have their stories told. As a watch dog to government, journalists have a duty to be honest and fair in their reports of government officials concerning corruption. In that regard, Steel (2002) wrote, “Cole Campbell, editor of the Virginian-Pilot, has put into practice various elements of civic journalism. He believes that news organizations must create a different sort of relationship with the public, one that reexamines the journalist’s role to sources and to readers. Campbell (1995) says newspapers must reframe the questions and change conventions about what is news and how it is covered. He says journalism must “cover tension not just conflict, ambivalence not just certainty.” (Para. 6).
CSPAN guest Ed Fouhy (1997) outlines the plight of journalism and community saying, “Civic Journalism needs to be in reformed. One definition of a reformed civic journalism would be to tell the truth so the people can be informed and remain sovereign and gives maximum freedom of choice.” In essence, Mr. Fouhy proclaims that the media should be a guiding force to the people, but instead have become arrogant and have First Amendment Reflex Syndrome where the excuse is always given for freedom of speech. Fouhy adds to that to say, “ Journalist often are inconsiderate to the personal hurt caused by to people and the person through invasion of privacy, and devalue the damage done by media while overvaluing the good that might come from reports.” (Paraphrased). The plight of some communities; or rather individuals broadcast on television is disparaging, because of bias reporting. Last year, in news there were  a string of unfair trials publicized where people were literally getting away with murder. One in particular was a young Caucasian boy of sixteen years who was drunk behind the wheel of a car and ran into and killed people on the side of the road. His psychiatrist labelled him as suffering from so called ‘affluenza’. Conversely, affluenza reportedly, is a dis-ease of the affluent which says a youth’s inability to tell right from wrong is imbalanced. Hence, the punishment for the inebriated lad was ten years’ probation. In that same vain, this year an inebriated black man was drunk and drove his car into a crowd of people. The media coverage had a field day with that and for weeks after followed up with the funerals, the victims and the like. The icing on the cake came when an interview with a deceased teen’s girlfriend said that she wanted the accused dead, and this said with malice against someone of her own race. The media never showed anything afterwards concerning the other drunken individual mentioned, except to say that his parents were settling suits for those families who lost loved ones too. It is bias, because here are two drunks who killed but two totally different reports concerning them. Steel (2002) wrote, “Bill Woo (1995) does not shine a solid red light on public journalism. He raises cautions in the spirit of a yellow light. Woo likes the connections to improving democracy, and he says he is “intrigued by what may lie down that road, beyond the bend.” But he also urges all of us in journalism to listen to what he calls the “old bells ringing for objectivity, detachment, independence, for the courage to print stories that are unpopular and for which there is no consensus. “I hope we listen for them again,” Woo says, “before we grow so old and so wise that they no longer matter.” (Para, 30). One has to question whether the stories reported are objective, detached, and independent when one sided reporting is the case. Additionally, good news would have made at least one of the reports into an angle story, whereabouts; the issue of driving drunk would have been displayed with information to educate and teach. Hence, the guidance factor in journalism would have been at the forefront for youth today to discourage drinking endeavors; but sadly, the message presented was if one is white and affluent one can get away with murder which is surely a form of bias at its peak.
Troubling is the fact that good news has been traded for internet stories and social media scandal done in a rush. It is the case that gone are the days of intimacy where a good newspaper read was a family affair, comics and all. Paula A. Sanford, Currently resides in Galesburg, IL USA and is a Certified Television Producer with Chicago Access Network TV, (CAN TV) 2007-2010 – Produced written copy & public service announcements for the Cook County, Chicago, IL area. Paula also is a Community Relations Coordinator/Public Relations Director: Prayer & Faith Outreach Ministries, Chicago, IL – 2004 – 2010: Made community relations news available to the Chicago & surrounding suburbs, concerning upcoming and ongoing events occurring in the church and community. Paula was asked to give her view concerning the fail of some newspapers and their readership: “Does the decline of newspapers even matter? Could this actually be a blessing in disguise? Her response: Yes, I think it matters that there is a decline of newspapers. To me, it is as imperative to some people to have newspapers, because some baby boomers (and others) may never adapt to social media.” (Sanford, 2014). It is the case that some people would rather read than turn on the television or listen to the radio. Hence, Civic Journalism must be multifaceted in its quest to guide.
In closing, journalism has three approaches to the community, that is the lap dog, the attack dog, the watch dog, and to remove negative stigma every public journalist should take responsibility for seeing the goal of becoming a guide dog to the communities brought forth. In these, there should be different outlooks stemming from the individual journalist who might see their job as a race to higher status and paycheck rather than seeing a community of hope developed. Journalist across the board must re-engage with the community not just entertain communities, because as it is with the homeowner’s plight so it is as Fouhy (1997) points out that “People want to know where the good schools are and how to improve those where they live; as well as learning how their tax dollars are spent. In turn, reports should be a balance between positive and negative where there is ongoing reporting; not just drive by reports. Certainly, there is a need to re-direct the focus of what good news is, because good news shakes up the comfortable and comforts the afflicted. Subsequently, becoming the ‘guide dog’ it was meant to be.