The Value of Education

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. – Nelson Mandela

We need to stop telling young people they don’t need to get a high school education or graduate HS. I’ve heard lots of colorful stories about dropouts that went on to become millionaires. We all realize that’s not the favored odds. High school should prepare young people to begin life and become productive citizens, as Barack Obama pointed out during his presidency.

I agree with MLK. Intelligence plus character is the true goal of education. Our current state of intelligence suggest reading above the 8th grade level will provide benefits to an individual. To MLK’s point, with education comes intelligence and, hopefully, greater understanding of social conditions and perhaps suggestion of how to resolve social  problems.

A. Phillip Randolph, once called “the most dangerous man in America,” led 250,000 people in the 1963 March on Washington.

The Goal of Education: Part 1 of 4


The Goal of Education

 “Intelligence plus character – that is the goal of true education.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

America is great because we have free education for everyone. Free education allows anyone to be as enlightened as anyone else. It allows anyone to be an astronaut or inventor. Anyone can be someone we respect and value regardless of race, religion, sexual orientation, etc.

Why do we fail to use education to become better people. People don’t accept blame well. Our favorite scapegoat is the “System” and, secondarily, principals, teachers, parents and  students. Students? Really?

Don’t blame. It’s a “bleep”. Fix the bleep. Bleep fixing requires intelligence and character- knowledge and conviction.

Edward Alexander Bouchet was the first African-American to earn a doctorate degree, which he received for physics in 1876 from Yale.

NYC’s graduation rate was above 70% for the first time in 2016. The white student graduation rate was 88% while the black and hispanic rate was 65%. Only about 50% of students with disabilities graduated.

The Goal Of Education: 1 of 4


I have, at this late age, settled on what I am: AAmerican. Spelled with a Double A but pronounced American. Some might see AA as a target and others as a mark of excellence. I exist somewhere in between. Though our numbers are fewer than theirs, I am not a minority. I refuse the negative connotation and stereotype. I am an American with afforded rights and privileges. I am a member of a group: AAmerican. Human nature categorizes. I’m ok with that. I refuse, however, to be beaten down because of some vague notion I might be a threat to someone’s woman and, eventually, way of life.

So I have quit checking the box. I have stopped wondering who I am. I have stopped explaining I am ideologically Black, not African-American, Negro, Colored . . .
I have ascended from Africans brought here as slaves to build to America. I am an integral part of the United States.

But why identify at all. Because too many out there still see me as a rusty, wayward nail. I must remind myself to keep safe, to keep my children safe, and friends, relatives and loved ones that there are discriminating hammers that will pound the life from us if given the chance.

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