Aim Higher! (take what you can?…)

Something is better than nothing, right?

This is one of those statements that need to be eradicated from culture!  NO!  Something is not better than nothing!  This statement keeps us from our highest potential.  This statement has been a crutch for mediocrity and a grand contradiction in the education of families and the progression of communities.  Such unconscious statements have survived our families and we keep them relative without actualizing the potential danger.

I was having conversation with a friend of mine and we came to a disagreement about an educational tactic used for engaging dialogue with young people.  It was a video with known and unknown hip hop artists talking about the current state of the hip hop world.  There were about 5-6 of them seated at a table talking.  Three were actively smoking marijuana (or small cigarettes…yea right!), while the other two briefly compared their coming into the music industry with newcomers.  They briefly discussed how the artistry of it has changed and seemingly for the worse.  The table was clad with athletic shoes and matching hats.  (No, not flowers or a pitcher of water with cups.)  From my stand point, there was more to the story than what was being said.  The visual aspect and their behaviors told a story as well.  In addition, they addressed one another with aggressive exchanges of, “my n*gga this and my n*gga that.”  My friend commented that to reach a “certain crowd in our community”, he would use this video to pull them in.  I took personal offense to this and challenged him.

While the entire story displayed in the video quite possible does implicate individuals in the hip hop community, to engage a different mindset one can utilize a different narrative.  His argument was the 2-3 minutes of conversation that supported the lack of artistry in the hip community is imperative for others to know about.  I challenged if he knew of other material that expressed the same sentiments and he said yes.  Yet, he persisted that there are people out there that will relate directly to these artists and he will take what he can from it and tell people to disregard everything else.

So let me get this straight, you have a more holistic approach to take but because of celebrity you will dumb down the message down and teach them to be grateful for whatever they can get?  NO, it’s time to move forward with a different approach!

I told him that once he has children he will change his philosophy and thoughts.  And hopefully one day he will raise his expectations and the price of entry for education.  When I asked if he would tell his daughters to accept pieces of friendships from men as they just dropped in their lives from time to time he fell silent.  I took his silence as him seeing that sometimes you have to not accept something and know  that everything you deserve is coming.  Otherwise when you get what you want, you will have so much junk compiled along the way you won’t have a whole capacity to accept it.

This plays true to my life in so many aspects.  I grew up with the saying, “take what you can and be grateful!”  But I no longer believe that.  I now believe that what is mine will come as I deserve and desire.  And it will come with a total respect and contribute to me feeling and being a whole person.

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