8 Years @ BlackElectorate.com
This month marks the eight year anniversary of BlackElectorate.com (http://www.blackelectorate.com/). It is hard for us to express in words how grateful and how rewarded we have been by this experience.
There is no accomplishment or blessing greater than being a factor (whether tangible or intangible)in the transformation of human life, for good. And of all of the compliments, expressions of appreciation, and praise that we have received, none mean more to us than those which indicate that the service that we provide at this website has influenced personal or social change for the better.
We say THANK YOU, over and over again for your presence.
Having said that, while it has been a joy to serve as an information resource to so many of you, as many of you know, there is no sustained enjoyment in simply informing and educating, if that process does not compel unity and action toward change for the better.
As a result in 2006 we launched our "Business and Building" Community dedicated to applying the information that is gathered and analyzed in this forum, toward work in four areas: Political Action, Business and Investment, International Affairs, and Community Development.
In the span of 1 and a half years we have gathered, conferred, and formed relationships and alliances in these areas, which you will hear more details about in coming weeks and months, and have an opportunity to engage, shape, and support.
As many of you know, we have announced an alliance with the ACLU to confront a defining issue of our generation and people: felon disenfranchisement.
Those who marginalize, ignore, or seek to diminish this issue are clearly unaware of or not moved by the language of the 13th Amendment to the United States Constitution which reads:
Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime where of the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
Section 2. Congress shall have the power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
The nexus of the prison industrial complex and voting rights is affecting every major issue that Black people in America face.
As you can see, the website continues to be updated with news stories, but with a greater emphasis on these four areas, and quality over quantity in terms of news links.
The purpose is to deepen our mastery of our Four Initiative Areas, which focus on:
- Political Action: Felon Disenfranchisement/Prison Industrial Complex
- Business and Investment: Black Bank and Investment Club Initiative For Wealth Creation, Financial Literacy, and Community Development
- Community Development: Youth Development and Street Organizations
- International Affairs: The Relationship Between The Diaspora and The African Union
Our editorial and coverage will sharpen and focus around these four areas. We are accepting op-ed submissions but only those that relate to these Four issues.
So, yes, that means hypothetically that anyone wishing to comment on the 2008 presidential election at BlackElectorate.com in an opinion editorial would have to do so through the lens of these Four issues.
BlackElectorate.com - for this entire year - is placing the enlightened self-interest of our people - as represented by these four issues - over any personality, ideology, partisan affiliation, or single issue.
We hope you will notice and agree that this website's agenda is not dependent upon the ideology or interests of any single individual, political candidate or party, elected official, organization, or opinion leader - although, of course, we are positively influenced by many of these said persons and individuals.
Rather than simply appealing to the existing collection of of leaders and organizations we believe it is time is for an informed, educated, passionate, and relevant 'independent' community of Stars to come forth.
Time demands that unorthodox interactions, strategy, and tactics be applied to the quality of life issues and problems which face us.
We are confident that the over 100,000 news articles; nearly 1,500 editorials and op-eds and venues like our discussion, chat room, and economics university have all set the stage for us to organize ourselves in many contexts: formal and informal; profit and non-profit, spiritual and agnostic; and other dialectical and creative ways that will unleash badly needed energy, insights, and will power to improving our cultural, economic, and political life - locally and globally.
That is what "Business and Building" is all about.
Time will tell if our confidence is well-placed and this forum can successfully evolve from a dynamic information and educational force into an organized community that does not think as a crowd in the abstract about reality. We are at war with the mentality and attitude that makes an intellectual exercise out of the witness of our pain and suffering, as reported in the Black, mainstream, and alternative news media.
As many of you know, although we know we make it possible in a sense, we take very little pleasure in knowing that our service enables simply the forwarding of news stories, water cooler talk, and political chatter.
Interesting and fun exercises at times, but hardly the action steps that time and nature demand, after we gain knowledge.
If you are moved by 'news,' 'talk radio,' and cable and Internet information sources, that emotional and intellectual experience should compel direct action, eventually, and in harmony with others who feel and think as you.
Although the Creator, the longing of our ancestors, universal law and nature, are working on behalf of our unity, it does require some work on our part to find the like-minded among us (smile).
The BlackElectorate.com "Business and Building" Community is just one of many possible places for you to channel your energies and facillitate such human connection. But we do think we are a rather unique one.
Those who share our critique of the crisis of excessive intellectualism and have the spirit to join with a group of like-minded persons whose love for knowledge is matched by a passion to work for change, can e-mail us directly at cedric(at)blackelectorate.com to register for a series of conference calls on the progress being made on the Four "Business and Building" Initiatives, and how to get involved.
You reading this and all of those who visit this website, and especially the current Members of our "Business and Building' Community; point to the ultimate meaning of the word 'elect' in our name.
As we have said in the past, that word has less to do with a ballot box than we ever could have imagined.
We can no longer equate activism with marches and politics with voting.
Time demands those actions and more.
To know that, all you have to do is, well, read the news (smile)
To Follow The Latest Movements of BlackElectorate.com's "Business and Building" Community Tune In To "The Cedric Muhammad and Black Coffee Program" at The Black Coffee Channel.
Live Broadcast (Every Wednesday From 12 to 4 PM EST)
To Join The Mailing List For "The Cedric Muhammad And Black Coffee Program" visit:
Charles and Cedric Muhammad
Sunday, April 27, 2008
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The views and opinions expressed herein by the author do not necessarily represent the opinions or position of BlackElectorate.com or Black Electorate Communications.