Monday, May 07, 2007

A Change of Heart by Akindele Akinyemi


Recently, I have been urging people to move out of state because there is no hope for Michigan. And there is no hope for Black people in Michigan.
I have a change of heart on this issue.
For one, I am a father first. My son resides here in the City of Detroit. My family resides here in the City of Detroit.
The One Network was born right out of my apartment in the New Center Area under the One Detroit Network. Before that I was part of the Black Slate.
I learned over 72 religions and was a member of the Shrine of the Black Madonna of the Pan African Orthodox Christian Church. This is where I learned how to preach and educate on a greater scale. The church gave me my platform.
I evolved with that platform and took it to the conservative side of things.
I enjoy watching my son evolve. He is getting older and is doing well in school. He is growing stronger and becoming more critical in terms of his thinking. His teachers say that he is one of the most mature students they have ever encountered.
Does this mean that I will still move out of state in a hurry? It will depend on who calls first.
Benton Harbor needs a superhero. They have been ravaged by decades of liberal policies that have hurt both the academic and economic community out there. They need a brother like myself to go in and clean up.
Battle Creek needs help. They are having a gang problem and a declining educational system also. They too need a superhero.
When I walk the streets of Ann Arbor during the Ann Arbor Art Festival that is held every July and see how open the homosexual community are in that city I realize that values are going out the window. They need salvation in that town.
Pontiac, Flint and Saginaw are all GM towns with an declining economic base. The school system are horrible in these towns. They too need a superhero. A superhero who can help transform the economy through educational choices.
Inkster need a superhero. It is on the verge of a comeback but hey do not have to proper leadership.
I have been talking to Black Conservatives nationwide and many of them are asking me to stay in this desert with no jobs. I keep telling them that I cannot continue to work like I am and make the same amount of money with my credentials.
Then they asked me do you have faith? I told them yes. They want me to hold on for a second. If I must move then I should look regionally like Ohio or Indiana to stay close to my family and colleagues.
I thought that was a good response.
This is what I am willing to do for brothers and sisters here in Urban Michigan. I am willing to stay here to help people understand why we need political balance in our city. I am willing to stay here to only work with people who are moving ahead and not sleepwalking.
I am willing to teach here if we can collectively fight together for more educational options and more alternative teaching certification. I am willing to assist if we do more revolutionary things instead of doing the same thing over and over again.
I am willing to stay here in Michigan and work with people on the other side of the aisle to get the job done. However, I cannot stay here in Detroit. The atmosphere is too poisonous for me. We are too politically illiterate in this city and with unions controlling everything it would be damn near impossible for me to get anything done. We are still stuck on land banks and charter schools.
I realize that since I believe in regionalization that I do not have to stay stuck in Detroit. Black people are all over the place in Michigan. I am not committed to Detroit but I am committed to urban Michigan.
I have to continue my work in building urban regional networks. Black Conservatives will fare better in smaller urban communities with our message like Inkster, Benton Harbor and Jackson. We have to take our talents in those areas.
Young Black Conservatives are beginning to organize and for the first time even talking about designing focus groups to educate our community. We can transform Southfield and Oak Park into Black Conservative hubs if we strategically plan today. I can see Farmington Hills in 5 years becoming a real hub for Black Conservatives who are middle class. Someone asked me if I would be willing to move to Farmington Hills and I told him yes. The potential for Black Republicans are greater in areas with a more educated population than areas that are struggling.
I can see economic development occurring in places like Inkster and Ypsilanti but they are going to need our help.
My Black Conservatives in this state need leadership that will unite us under one banner. I have spoken to many Black Republicans here in Michigan. Some are ready while others are afraid to come out of the closet.
I am not afraid. I am a Black Man working on a doctorate degree. I have been teaching all along my professional career. I have a keen approach to bringing people together on both sides of the aisle.
My candidates who are running for State Representative desperately need my help. One candidate must go to Lansing and I know the way.
I have to teach our young Black Conservatives the knowledge, wisdom and understand of self. I have to keep them steadfast and not deviate from the mission that we are on. I have to remind them that every brother is not your brother and every sister is not your sister.
Every Republican you run across is not your brother or sister either because when they go back in their community they do not think about the plight of African Americans. They too, can be just as racist and sexist as their Democratic counterpart. That's why both parties can come together to push a so-called hate crimes bill that is really a homosexual bill. Yet, Republicans are supposed to be champions of values.
Some in the Republican leadership have refused to read my articles. They think it is too radical. However, when election time comes along they will be seeking my help. I will tell them that seeking my help is too radical and I cannot help you either. Why? Because you were not there when I needed you. Now you true colors are showing. My true colors will show as well.
I am not trying to stay here to deliver the State of Michigan for Mitt Romney, Barack Obama or John McCain. I am trying to deliver the State of Michigan for educational choice proponents who want to see alternative teacher certification programs in this state. I am trying to deliver more free -market economic programs for the urban community. I have no interest in a Presidential contest that is already controlled by interest groups. I have interest in state representative races and county commissioner races. I want Black Conservatives to step up to the plate with me to address illiteracy, voting rights, educational choice, economics , health care and core family values. I am willing to stay if I can find someone who will fight along my side.
We, as Black Conservatives, are responsible for the Black community and urban issues. That includes discussions on race, poverty and education. Something that we do not do a good job in discussing on a larger scale because we have fear of retaliation from liberals. We are scared of the NAACP and the Democratic Party. Instead of going toe to toe in intelligent debate we run scared and we run to our massa to hide and seek guidance. Most are afraid of the NAACP and their liberal agenda. We have forgotten that it was Black Conservatives who helped found the NAACP in 1909. It is time to take back what is rightfully ours. We cannot fight the NAACP head on. We need to pull the young adults to the side and remind them that their values are far more important than the NAACP platform. Then we put them back inside the organization with a different mindset.
The days of running scared are over. We are living in the 21st century. I have been turned down my many educational jobs because of hard nose approach to education. I strongly believe in raising a crop of thinkers, not hood rats or losers.
If you are going to help me build a conservative community you cannot be scared. You cannot be afraid to profess your values in public. You cannot be afraid to run for elected office on a platform based on your Christian values. You cannot be afraid to tell the unions no. In fact, we should not be even catering to unions who have helped ravaged the community.
It is critical that we push and bring a new influx of Black Republican organizations into the mix like the National Black Republican Association, Republicans for Black Empowerment, Alliance of Black Republicans, and the Michigan Black Republican Council to balance out the liberal urban agenda in our community. We need to see these organizations up and running to help push a new urban agenda that will translate into action. We are done having sit down dinners and hearing a keynote speaker only to go back into the wilderness of crime, poverty and failing schools after we have paid over $100 for a ticket that we have no clue where the money is going.
If Black Conservatives are going to do this then we need to do this in favor of raising money for scholarships for poverty-stricken children or the feeding the elderly. What about raising money for children who have HIV/AIDS and are homeless? What about raising money for books and technology in charter schools? We are wasting our time with Presidential elections and other stuff that has taken us off our real focus.
I have to work with our brothers and sisters in Benton Harbor. The educational system is a mess. I have to do what it takes to help fix it.
I have to help Inkster schools. I have worked out there before. They need salvation and a hero.
I have to work with our children in the community. We have already lost a generation. We cannot lose another generation to ignorance.
I have to help our churches return to the body of Christ. We have fallen for liberal (and some conservative) policies that are not working as well as faith based initiatives that has nothing to do with our community. The faith based initiaitve should come from us not government. We generate enough money in the church who has asked for a audit of the financial reports? If Keith Butler is making a million dollars a year preaching HOW is he making that money and where is the rest of the money going? Keep our pastors accountable.
The Black Conservatives must hold our pastors accountable for their actions and the church's actions. We understand the church is the bedrock in our community. To allow John Conyers or any elected official to support an agenda that has failed Black people and continue to fail Black people is unacceptable.
Our Black Boys need strong male figures. I am a strong male figure not just to my son but to his friends. I am known as Baba Akindele in many circles because I am the only father that most of these children have. I cannot leave them hanging. They need a hero.
Bert Johnson, Tupac Hunter, Commissioner Mike Rogers and Shanelle Jackson need my total help. I cannot leave them hanging dry in this political minefield. I have helped Shanelle since day one when no one knew who she was. I cannot leave my sister up there with the wolves.
Jacqueline Whitted, Carmen Hodge, Tracee Weathersby, Kimberly Hill and Rhonda Guess all need my help. These sisters will help change the face of politics, economics and lifeskills for our children if we give them a hand. Not a hand to fall down but a helping hand. They need my assistance. All are God-fearing Christian women from both sides of the aisle. I have worked with all of them and many more like them.
If I stay, I want people and investors to help me build a school. I want people to help me elect conservatives into office. I want to target a few communities for economic and community redevelopment in Western Wayne County and Berrien County. Kalamazoo and Lansing need our help.
If God wants me to leave Michigan then I will follow His lead. Until then, we have work to do.

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