Organizing is a Process, Not an Event
An important occasion; an incident; an activity or one of a series of activities. NIWPD*
A set of actions; a system marked by gradual changes that lead toward a particular result. Webster’s
A group or arrangement of parts, facts, etc. that relate to or interact with each other; a group of logically related facts, beliefs, etc.; a method of classification, arrangement, etc. NIWPD
*New International Webster’s Pocket Dictionary
Perhaps my favorite quote from the teachings of the Honorable Marcus Mosiah Garvey is: “The greatest weapon used against the Negro is disorganization.” I used to wonder why Mr. Garvey drew this conclusion from all other possibilities. I have come to agree fully with my hero, and am convinced that this too is a result of the conditioning black people were subjected to as part of the diabolical process used to convert us from the African human beings we were prior to the advent of the trans-Atlantic slave trade to the slaves we became. The operative word here is process. No “slaves”‘ were ever brought to North America! Human beings were captured and brought here in chains, and through a process of dehumanization spanning nearly a century and several generations, were reduced below the level of beasts. No animals owned by our enslavers were treated so horrifically as the sons and daughters of Africa who were so unfortunate as to have been among those captured and transported here! As a collective group, we still suffer the psychological trauma infused into us as part of that process. Whereas our condition of servility and inferiority is the result of a process, most of our efforts to extricate ourselves from that mental and emotional bondage have consisted of events. If we are to regain our humanity, we must organize ourselves into a force capable of throwing off the shackles placed on our minds, and embark on a process of restoration.
By definition an “event” is an occasion, an incident, an activity, or one of a series of activities. By contrast, a “process” is a set, a system, that brings about gradual changes that lead to a particular result. Events cannot reverse or undo effects brought about by a process! Only through a counter-process can there be any possibility of doing so, and that counter-process must be designed and carried out in such a way as to lead to a particular result! To do this requires, at minimum — vision, organization, structure, resolve, and discipline. Truth be told, blacks in America have shown little if any of these invaluable traits and attributes of late! Not since the days of Marcus Garvey’s Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA-ACL) has there been an organized effort with structure designed and intended for the express purpose of restoring people of African descent in America to our African humanity! The challenge for our One Million Conscious Black Voters & Contributors (OMCBV&C) initiative is to pick up where Mr. Garvey left off when he was deported from America, take the baton firmly in hand, and run the next leg of Black Americans’ relay race toward the goal of ascending back to our “…rightful place among the constellation of nations and peoples of the Earth!”
Jim Clingman and I both were fortunate to have attended the Million Man March (MMM) on October 16, 1995 in Washington, DC, though we did not meet each other until 10 years later in 2005 when we both presented a plank in Dr. Claud Anderson’s “Powernomics” platform in Detroit, Michigan. As wonderful and inspiring as the MMM was, it was only an event; it had the potential to inspire attendees to engage in a process to realize the noble goals and objectives mentioned by the series of speakers that day. Unfortunately, the MMM’s convener did not have a plan of action to present to his receptive audience, and the only challenge we were presented with was to “…return to our respective homes and places, and join some organization that is working for the uplift and advancement of black people;” and if no such organization worthy of our support existed in our communities, we were “obliged to create one.” Just how many of the 2.5 million black men in attendance that day heeded Minister Farrakhan’s urging and did as he suggested is a story yet to be told, but we do know two “true believers” who took the Minister’s words to heart, and went back home to Cincinnati, Ohio and West Palm Beach, Florida respectively, and started planting seeds for improvement in the condition of black people. Here we are another 10 years later (2015), and those two (now) “old-geezers” are still in the hunt for solutions to the puzzle of how to get black people back to where our Creator and Ancestors intended us to be!
“Tomorrow is not promised to us;” and if there is to be a future for people of African descent, some element among us will have to step up to the plate and prove themselves capable of conceptualizing (envisioning), planning, organizing, implementing, conducting, evaluating, modifying, and bringing to fruition the particular results sought after! That is referred to as “organizing” brothers and sisters! Jim and I are trying to provide the caliber and quality of experienced leadership needed for this awesome undertaking, but leaders are only as good and effective as those they lead, and it is from among this group that the next cadre of leaders must evolve if there is to be continuity of effort and resolve. Jim is getting old, and I am even older (LOL); we both face health challenges daily. You all will have to pardon us if we appear sometimes to be impatient with the lack of or slow response from our folks to what appears to us to be “as plain as the nose on your face.” We KNOW this stuff ain’t “rocket science,” and it does not take a genius to recognize what we are up against and what would be required to overcome obstructions to our success. WE ARE and of necessity MUST BE the SOLUTION to our own problems; that is the way of life. The only question worth asking and answering is: Are we possessed of the qualities and attributes required to get the job done? If not, we will be forced to admit that as a Race we are, in fact, inferior and should throw ourselves on the mercies of our superiors as some notable blacks advise us to do!
Jim and I have started this process, and are committed to staying the course as long as we are able and have sufficient encouragement from the ranks of our people, but as the “Last Poets” warned us: “Time is running out on bullsh** changes,” so the true Black MEN and WOMEN must rise to the occasion, step to the fore, and captain our ship to safe harbor. This is not the time for fainthearted or halt-stepping negroes. Who amongst you is ready to take on this task? Events-oriented persons need not apply, because it is Nature’s law that only the strong have a right to survive, and that is because the strong are willing to assert their right to survival — and beyond that — to PROSPER!!! Start flexing your muscles people, and determine the place and role you will play in this PROCESS.