Saturday, December 22, 2012
Witnessing a crack head in DC aggressively asking for spare change, you can’t help but to wonder how did he end up in this predicament? It’s hard to believe that this crack head was once an innocent child, who was told that the possibilities of a bright future were endless. He could have been anything he wanted to be. Or at least that is what they say. I once asked a friend if he thought Presidents were born or were presidents made. He replied with the ingenuous answer of ‘President are made’. In a way this is true. Presidents are made but they are also born, and they are set to fit certain criterion which includes an education from an Ivy League school and/or military background, they have certain connections and big dollar signs behind them to influence and support their campaign/agenda. So when they tell us that we can be anything we want to be, I cringe inside. Some positions, some goals, some aspirations in life is not fully in our control. You can hold your breath until you turn blue, but that won’t make you the President. There is no way in hell I can run for president in 2016 and win without being accepted and endorsed by ‘the people who make dreams come true’. There is more to the story than just hard work, blood, sweat and tears for most success stories. There are different paths set up for us because in this world we need our crack heads, we need or burger flippers, criminals, police, we need our teachers, doctors, presidents and prostitutes. Everyone plays an important role and without one, you wouldn’t need the other. Some take the path of an Urban Crack Head while a selected few become President. It’s a matter of preparation meeting opportunity… a vast percentage of chance.
Some hoes, can infact become house wives.
As long as you work hard, you can achieve your goals. I know I am pretty fledging in regards to corporate politics, but I can aver that working hard isn’t tantamount to success. I remember sitting in one of my college courses when I heard the phrase ‘work smart, not hard’. Just look around, in this land of opportunity, the people that work using blood, sweat and tears are your factory workers, farmers, custodians, car washers, construction workers, miners… all minimum wage jobs. You get paid more to use your brain, rather than using your body/strength. Education is important when it comes to ‘success’, whatever ‘success’ may equate to. The smarter you are, the more knowledge you possess in that peanut brain of yours, the more the likely hood of you possessing something that some company/consumer wants. Which means you don’t have to work that hard, you just sit in your office in front of the computer and make sure the blue collars are doing their job like they’re suppose to.
I took an Organizational Behavior course my last summer at FAMU and in the course we briefly talked about POWER and its definition. I mean, we hear it all the time, but what makes someone powerful? Well, power is having something that the majority of people don’t have. Power is having something that everyone else wants. You see it now, where people have a lot of money and that grants them power. The mistake with just having power due to money is that once you lose the money, you lose the power. I am more of an advocate for power through knowledge. And as long as you possess this knowledge, you will maintain your power, which in return will present money. Think about innovators – Apple for instance, and the brain power behind that company. Apple has nine executives that made an estimated $441 million in 2011, which averages to $49 M per executive. Now, let’s look at Foxconn, the contracted company based in China that assembles Apple products. Foxconn has an estimated 95,000 employees with an estimated total pay of roughly the same amount, $441 M which is about $4,642 per worker per year.
It’s unfortunate that everyone can’t be a millionaire. Unfortunately, one of the inevitable truths is that there will be the rich and there will be the poor, the educated and the uneducated. But what we can be hopeful about is that being an American means that you have access to education. Yes, the trust-fund babies may have access to the best education (if they even care enough to be educated… but why would they when DADDY has them covered for life). The children in poor communities, they have to work a little harder to get the same education since those same resources wouldn’t be made available to them, not including the fact that people in poor communities usually don’t value education as much as they should. Not to mention, poor communities are usually saturated in crime, which then trickles into the classrooms, causing the teachers to focus more on discipline rather than educating, taking away from students who may have ‘bright futures’. But hey… the sky’s the limit and hindsight is 20/20. If I would have been thought the importance of an education, and given BIG words to study in high school maybe things would have been different for me and my SAT scores.
I am not saying that you can’t be anything that you want to be. You could, depending on the opportunities presented to you. But what I am saying is, you could have been that crack head on the streets in DC. Don’t praise yourself too much in regards to the things you have accomplished. Some of that was just chance (or God’s will, whatever you want to call it). Because I am sure there is someone more qualified, more educated, more deserving than you, but they weren’t presented with the same opportunities.
Disclaimer: I am not saying you can’t turn a crack head into a president, a criminal into a judge (may have to check the laws for that tho) or a hoe into a house wife… I am just saying that you can’t have one without the other. Everyone isn’t going to be ‘successful’ for whatever reason.