James Baldwin and other prolific authors like Eldridge Cleaver create Black literature for the likes of the African American community existing in an unjust America. As a people, we are thrown to the wolves, primarily labeled as ‘victims and cry babies.’ Yes, we are victims and cry babies. We are victims of the machinery of oppression from a racist power structure. African American people are a victim’s face, whether it be socially or economically. Whether the oppressor wants to admit to it or not.
We as African Americans must get to know ourselves and unlearn European practices that hold us captive to poverty and white washing. Do we know our awareness as a people of color? Of course we do! However, do we know our worth?
Black Awareness vs. Our Worth
Of course, we are aware that we are African American. But do we know our worth in regards to black enterprise and financial freedom?
Black awareness is what we are taught in school, usually missing vital information due to white washing. Why were weren’t we taught about Huey Newton and Booby Seale? The Black Panther Party is the first example of awareness in our communities. They are also the perfect example of Black worth, standing for what they believe in without backing down. By investing in their communities offering opportunities for free breakfast and free healthcare. When we look in the mirror everyday we perpetually remind ourselves black self awareness. What about Black worth?
Awareness and Black worth are interchangeable; however, our worth is evolving. For example; NFL drafts are a common form of slavery! Line players up, pick them and pay them all while calling them the N word behind closed doors. If something happens like an injury, the next player will take over the injured player’s spot.
So why must we take our talents where we are not invited if we weren’t athletes? We as a people need to now that our worth is for the people and the betterment of our poor communities. According to MSNBC, Deion Sanders shocked the nation for drawing the first pick in the NFL draft in the country. Outrage pour out from white hecklers—his shoes set ablaze. Instead of choosing a PWI, the player decided to go with Jackson State. This is an example of understanding Black worth. Your talent can take you just as for as a PWI, farther. We need to encourage our Black youth to take their talents where they will be appreciated.
According to We Forum, Black History Month is a way to enlighten African American youth; however, thanks to the Department of Education, financial literacy is not in favor of African American students.