I have read numerous studies and listened to untold numbers of reports that focus on those with lack of self-esteem. There generally is a consistent belief that these persons are uneducated, undereducated, below poverty line, single parents, welfare recipients, section eight, alcoholics, drug addicts. These conclusions are accurate to a degree, but it is not inclusive enough, because I have encountered and know persons who are entirely the opposite and they suffer from serious lack of self-esteem. Over the years I have engaged in conversations with Blacks who are making six figure incomes that are living the American dream, but are as insecure as a welfare recipient. A meeting I attended recently and 75 percent of those being questioned had at least a master’s degree and 25 percent of them were totally insecure.
How many Black elected officials can you call with a problem—community or personal—and receive any solution, or do they give you the weak excuse why they can’t solve it? Some often state I can’t do what they do. (You know who they are.)
How often have you heard a person profess to be a Christian and preface their remarks with I attend a small church, the bible makes no distinction between small and big. There are ministers who state they stay out of certain situations because it involves telling the truth and some of the congregation may resent it. (Are these ministers called by God?)
There are a number of Black men and women who hold impressive titles with the city of Pittsburgh, Allegheny County, major corporations, and when you confront them with a relevant issue after several phone call attempts and maybe one meeting, the standard response is “they” are not interested and I just work here. In good conscience I do not expect them to jeopardize their homes or family, but I do expect them to make the choice that they will stand up and speak out—not screaming—but articulating positions so it gives others pause to think.
However I understand that some of you reading this column are saying to others who think like you that Hop does not understand. I assure you I do understand, but my concerns were never about how my co-workers or anyone else viewed me, it has always been how Hop and my family viewed me.
Some of you may remember I worked for Allegheny County for four years and was provided with the privilege and opportunity to see first hand how Big Government works. The Allegheny County Commissioners and I discussed my role at the outset and we agreed that Hop Kendrick would have access.
Our communities are under siege as never before, our children need us now more than ever before. The time is now for us to put our petty differences aside and become focused on permanent solutions. Kingsley Association needs our support.
(Louis “Hop” Kendrick is a weekly contributor to the Forum Page.)