Something amazing happened at the New Pittsburgh Courier office recently. We had our four top elected officials visit our office and discuss not only their individual efforts, but their joint efforts to work together in the future while outlining some of the many issues they are already addressing together to help each other, but most of all the Black community.
In the past no matter how serious and concerned our Black leaders were, their egos would not allow them to work together. Everyone, excuse the expression, had to be the HNIC.
It was really refreshing to have Jake Wheatley call to have himself, Ed Gainey, the new state representative from the East End, City Councilmen Daniel Lavelle and Rev. Ricky Burgess all in one room together, enjoying each others’ company and discussing their work, and what they could do individually as well as collectively to help the Black community.
Hopefully this is the beginning of a mutual relationship in which Blacks show that we all can work together for the betterment of the Black community, even though we may disagree on certain issues.
I’m not going into details on what we discussed, because we have run two stories and will run two more geared toward what these four men see as the priorities facing the Black community and what they are doing to make a clear path.
It was also great that they understand that the New Pittsburgh Courier is here to serve the Black community. We are the eyes and ears of the community, both good and bad. If we don’t tell the story it won’t be told.
If these leaders realized the importance of working with the Courier, Pittsburgh’s only Black newspaper, why are we having such a great problem with other Black elected officials who say they represent the Black community but don’t take the time to get back to us when we call for their response to the very issues they were elected to address. I’m not naming names but you know who you are and if things don’t change I will name names.
Congratulations once again to Mark Brentley, on “Take Your Father To School” initiative being recognized nationally in 2012. Hopefully it will be picked up all over the country to get more Black men involved in the schools, and their children’s education in 2013. Maybe this will help our young Black boys realized that education is our future. With more fathers involved maybe the drop out, suicide, and homicide rates will decrease. Our young men need to see more positive role models of Black people working together, not against each other.
Back to Wheatley, hopefully this will lead to all Blacks, in elected or appointed offices, to work more closely with the Black media in getting vital information out to the Black community. We are open to all.
(Ulish Carter is managing editor of the New Pittsburgh Courier.)