Friends, I hope this message finds you in Peace and in Love,
I want to indicate the exact reasoning why I wrote this post-case in point that is over the past ten years I have been heavenly influenced by the plight of those less fortunate or the poor. My goal was not to seek empathy, but my “Clarion Call,” came through the need to assist others. After the experience of the death of a “loved one,” up until that point I quickly discovered how God humbles men to submit to his will. As the scripture in the book of Prophet James says, “Humble yourselves in the presence of the Lord, and He will exalt you.” Moving forward-I can honestly say my first direct action campaign was to advocate with The American Civil Liberties Union vs. The Death Penalty. The ACLU is nonpartisan organization whose stated mission is “to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution. I must argue that the current state of our country has readily shown me that perhaps many people’s view of constitutional rights is purely subjective to say the least.
Over the last five years, I’ve had honor of serving as a general member of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and within the past year organizing as a Chapter President in the SCLC State of Florida under the great leadership of Pastor RL Gundy. While, there frequently we would be called to engage in nonviolent direct action programs if deemed necessary. As a man of faith, I felt an urgency to live up to that promise. In early 2012 while on the way to a meeting in Atlanta, Georgina with then S.C.L.C Executive Director Damien Connors, I was contacted by members of a committee to assist members of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s Family in an initiative that would counter the removal of then SCLC President Issac Farris. I decided to give strategic and operational support to this effort because I specialize in both areas through training and attrition. Though the campaign was short-lived, very valid points became readily apparent.
Up until that point until the present time I participated as a growing national leader in advocating and organizing many campaigns for human rights, examples include as lead advocate George Stinney Jr. vs. South Carolina, The Florida (National) Battle vs. Stand Your Ground to name a few. All these events have heightened my concern because many of us are doing the work of our First National President Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as an obligation to the legacy. Moreover because we are called by God to do his will. Other great standouts are SCLC Chapter of Jacksonville, Florida (great organization), SCLC Peoples Coalition (unofficial, but growing), SCLC Roanoke, VA (great organization), SCLC State Chapter of Texas and many more.
Moreover, I am aware of the interrelatedness of all communities and states. Over the past few years I along with many have concern if and why the National Leadership would sit back idly and not “show in prove,” concern about what happens in Ferguson, Mo., New York, NY., Chicago, IL., In truth Dr. King once told us “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” While this was a bidding concern for many of us, in truth every day It has become readily apparent that we have been absent from the national frontlines. It is unfortunate that demonstrations are taking place around the country, but it is even more unfortunate that the power structure left the African-American community and others with no alternative. Where are we as an organization in all of this?
In truth at this most important time in our nation, we need you as our voice to stand up! To take a side, to enter into the national concern, to become a voice, to break through dissidence and continue the work as our founders have given their lives to our cause. For the record I must say; I give my life to this cause, and I’ll die for the cause.
Note: I have started an alternative organization Freedom First International because I didn’t want to worry about the overall impression of taking liberties from our organization here because I have organizational ties there and Freedom First was born out of the rich tradition of the SCLC. Freedom started as a Chapter Affiliate. Our motto “Fiat justitia, et pereat mundus” is a Latin phrase, meaning: “Let there be justice, though the world perish.” I would never compare the two, but I honor and preserve the mandate of those who died on the front lines of love for us! So, we work toward the future!
I still believe in our organization, as Dr.King said, “We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.”
I hope this message finds you in “Peace and Love,” but ultimately my three questions to you; 1) are we standing on the wrong side of history? or 2) with our founders legacy at stake are we standing in the shadows of love? 3) Can we redeem? – I (many) need to know.
Reverend Gregg L Greer -Freedom First President, SCLC member