Leadership is a missing commodity in our world today. As we install the third article in our series The Need for Urban Christian Leadership Part 3 we must review this fact. We can search every church, every temple, synagogues, civic organization, mosque and more, then we will not be able to find the much-needed change. I once read the following fact which I very much agree with. The fact concerns issues that are major problems facing our leaders and worldwide communities on a global basis.
- The Threat of Nuclear Terrorism.
- Global warning and environmental destruction.
- The Conflict between Nationalism and Globalism in Nations around the world.
- The growing discontent of U.S. Citizens and their social culture due to declining literacy, and Racial Strife .
These problems are a constant threat to our very existence, and as we enter into a new world and new day and age we must consistently seek change. At best inspired leadership can transform and renew our organizations, to motivate a certain vitality that would change the world.
Three Principles for Effective Urban Christian Leaders
Every effective leader needs advice and seeks advice. The ability to listen to the advice of others is the mark of a great leader
Proverbs 11:14 – For lack of guidance a nation falls, but many advisers make victory sure.
Proverbs 25:4,5 – Remove the dross from silver and out comes material for the silversmith; remove the wicked from the king’s presence, and his throne will be established through righteousness.
Characteristics of a Good Leader – Awareness of his Influence
In almost every era, no country has been able to rise above its leaders. For better or worse, people become like those they follow.
Proverbs 29:2 – When the righteous thrive, people rejoice; when the wicked rule, people groan.
Proverbs 29:14 – If a king judges the poor with fairness, his throne will always be secure.
Characteristics of a good leader-Service to Others
Each of us has something to offer. We can give our money and our time to charity, be a friend to someone who is sick or lonely, do volunteer work, or be a peacemaker, teacher or minister. We may choose a service-oriented occupation, or we may just do our everyday jobs with integrity and respect for others.
The Bible tells us that Jesus is the ultimate model of taking time for the poor, the outcasts, and children. He was naturally drawn to the weak who needed an advocate. We are not meant to live hard-hearted or self-centered lives.
Matthew 25:31-46 – A greedy, miserly life leaves us devoid of anything but an empty craving for more possessions, more power or more status.
Jesus was always active in making disciples, He recognized that His earthly sojourn was short. Therefore he invested his time in the training of disciples to continue the work. He was both their Master Teacher and their Master Trainer. While teaching and training are obviously related, teaching usually connotes the importation of knowledge, whereas training suggests formation or qualification through practice and discipline.
Preparation for leadership
The disciples’ preparation for leadership certainly involved the receiving of knowledge, but spiritual growth was uppermost. They needed an experience in the things of God, of faith, of hardship, of sanctification, and of self-sacrifice, along with an intellectual understanding of doctrine and theology. Knowledge alone was insufficient preparation for the rigorous challenges ahead. Jesus gave them both, and so must we!
The Necessity for Urban Christian Leadership
(This Article is an Excerpt From the book The Necessity for Urban Christian Leadership available 1-10-2015
Letter to Attorney Generals-Legal Complex-in New York, California, Texas, Florida, Illinois, and Missouri. The Fight is now!
Letter to Attorney Generals-and the Legal Complex-in New York, California, Texas, Florida, Illinois. The Fight is now!
By Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World
This letter has been sent out as a “Call to Action,” for all anyone wants to read but it is directed at the Attorney Generals, and Legal Aid VP’s, because many agree that social injustices exist but have argued that the battle against social injustice should be fought solely in the courts, not in the streets. In this point I along with my supporters have maintained the belief that all communities and states were interrelated, and the fight is now! In the words of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.
Friends, my letter to your desk, has a twofold purpose, A time such as this challenges us all to find our humanity and demonstrate in concrete terms that the power of community can overcome the power of hostility.
I want to convey this letter not just as an expression of solidarity but a plea for unity following multiple unjustifiable and unfortunate events around the county. While this list is long, I still want to list a few of the growing examples, that I have monitored both close and afar-they include The Death of Ramarley Graham, an unarmed teenager killed by police in the Bronx-Currently the family is calling for the federal government to push the case forward. Jr., Kenneth Harding Jr. who was murdered by San Francisco police at the age of 19 for allegedly failing to pay a $2.00 transit fare while the family (mother) still awaits information for an investigation of the police. What about-Eric Garner, Staten Island, New York, a 43-year-old asthmatic father of six, was confronted by New York City police officers for allegedly selling untaxed cigarettes. When he resisted being cuffed, an officer appeared to put him in a chokehold—a tactic banned by the department since 1993. A video of the arrest, first obtained by the New York Daily News, shows Garner gasping, “I can’t breathe!” while officers relentlessly smother him: From New York City and LA to Ohio and Ferguson, MO, we are experiencing a flurry of young men who all died under disputed circumstances with Police Arrest.
All the incidents and hundreds more have opened our eyes to the ever-growing fragility of inter-relations across the country and reminds us, yet again, of the urgent need for citizens of all walks of life to commit ourselves more proactively to live in mutual trust and respect.
What has been subject to attack is not only of importance to our communities but also the moral foundation of respect for difference and diversity, which encourages and ensures the equality for people of all walks of life.
Please recognize the damage that such acts are inflicting on our communities on the sentiments of many across the country who want to let you know that they feel, “alone,” with a sense of fear and loss. Contention is widespread, we must acknowledge the very act of targeting as being hugely detrimental to peaceful relations between communities, and we condemn the motives behind it. We hope and pray for justice and peace to prevail at this time.
Today calls us to be both a sensitive and perceptive in recognition of the global failure connected with nature of violence, and a form a newly reaffirmation of our commitment to grow in our understanding neighboring, collaboration, and cooperation to offer to protection the flourishing of all life.
- You must open the lines of communication with civic leaders who will carry a unified message back to communities.
- Seek cases where evidence is disputed and review higher standard. Citizen Review Boards will work with you
- Training Leadership both Internally and externally on prevention, protection.
- Seek just punishment for those guilty of unlawful behavior, when municipalities are failing, and public outcry is high!
- To ensure fair and impartial administration of justice for all Americans.
In a spirit of such understanding we wish and hope that each incident, despite the traumatic and tragic dimensions, may be transformed into an opportunity to offer the world a glimpse of the best of your morality as you discern the way forward. To this end we offer you our support and solidarity. I hope to have a conversation with you in the near future this letter defends the strategy of organized resistance to racism, I must argue that people do have a moral responsibility to break unjust laws.
I leave you with a word of caution, “If the community can’t find justice, Then I can assure you they will find Justice.” My hope is that I can dialog with you before, that time comes.
With best regards,
Gregg L Greer, President
Freedom First International
Southern Christian Leadership Conference Member
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The events that destroyed a thriving Black Oklahoma community 93 years ago were much more than a ‘race riot’
By Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World
As one of the most successful and wealthiest African American communities in the United States during the early 20th Century, it was popularly known as America’s “Black Wall Street” until the Tulsa Race Riot of 1921. The invasion was one of the most devastating massacres in the history of US race relations, destroying the once thriving Greenwood community.
The Riot and What HappenedThe riot began because of the alleged assault of a white elevator operator, 17-year old Sarah Page, by an African-American shoeshiner, 19-year old Dick Rowland (the case against Mr. Rowland was eventually dismissed). The Tulsa Tribune got word of the incident and chose to publish the story in the paper on May 31, 1921. Shortly after the newspaper article surfaced, there was news that a white lynch mob was going to take matters into its own hands and kill Dick Rowland. A group of armed white men congregated outside the jail and, subsequently, a group of African-American men joined the assembled crowd in order to protect Dick Rowland. There was an argument in which a white man tried to take a gun from a black man, and the gun fired a bullet up into the sky. This incident promoted many others to fire their guns, and the violence erupted on the evening of May 31, 1921. Whites flooded into the Greenwood district and destroyed the businesses and homes of African-American residents. No one was exempt from the violence of the white mobs; men, women, and even children were killed by the mobs. Troops were eventually deployed on the afternoon of June 1, but by that time there was not much left of the once thriving Greenwood district. Over 600 successful businesses were lost.
The AftermathWithin five years after the massacre, surviving residents who chose to remain in Tulsa rebuilt much of the district. They accomplished this despite the opposition of many white Tulsa political and business leaders. It resumed being a vital black community until segregation was overturned by the Federal Government during the 1950s and 1960s. Desegregation encouraged blacks to live and shop elsewhere in the city, causing Greenwood to lose much of its original vitality. Since then, city leaders have attempted to encourage other economic development activity nearby. “After the riot, black Tulsans, who were living in tents and forced… to wear green identification tags in order to work downtown, still managed to turn the tragedy into triumph. Without state help, they rebuilt Greenwood, and by 1942 the community had more than 240 black-owned businesses.”
What Economic Discrimination means?Investing in economic empowerment sets a direct path towards gender equality, poverty eradication and inclusive economic growth. We all must make enormous contributions to economies, whether in businesses, on farms, as entrepreneurs or employees, or by doing unpaid care work at home in order to grow. But there also exist those who are disproportionately affected by poverty, discrimination and exploitation. Economic Discrimination means people often end up in insecure, low-wage jobs, and constitute a small minority of those in senior positions. It curtails access to economic assets such as land and loans for the many. It limits participation in shaping economic and social policies. And, because some have to perform the bulk of the work load, they often have little time left to pursue economic opportunities. – Together-We must learn from the past and work toward the future. Related Articles:http://www.ebony.com/black-history/the-destruction-of-black-wall-street-405#ixzz3FTqKfYYn
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Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. will resign his post, the Justice Department said Thursday. Mr. Holder will remain in office until a successor is nominated and confirmed. Mr. Holder, the 82nd attorney general and the first African-American to serve in that position, had previously said he planned to leave office by the end of this year Particularly in President Obama’s second term, Mr. Holder has been the most prominent liberal voice of the administration.
The Justice Department said Mr. Holder finalized his plans to leave in an hourlong conversation with Mr. Obama at the White House over Labor Day weekend.
Please Share any thoughts and comments on the merits of Mr. Holder and his tenure leading the Justice Department.
The Lessons of Ferguson and Beyond-Several Ways to Combat Violence, Prevent, and maintain a community that fosters Accountability not Punishment!
By Gregg L Greer, Editor for One World
In Ferguson, Missouri the town that was rocked with protests over police On Saturday, August 9, 2014, when an unarmed 18-year-old male, Michael Brown, was fatally shot by Darren Wilson, a Ferguson police officer many in the community around the country where not surprised to hear of multiple stories of police abuse that had taken place. While the Justice Department has launched a broad investigation into the police department in Ferguson, Missouri, following the shooting of Mike Brown, many African-American residents still feel that the situation is hopeless and are still very frustrated. In order to effect change we (residents) must strive to repair the harm caused by crime to individual victims and communities, the focus must be two-sided, that means prevention of Police Brutality as well as prevention of a culture that chronic criminal offenders are punished on all sides is much needed.
In an a recent interview with CBS “Sunday Morning Marquis Govan a resident that is 11 years old, argued for change,” Govan shared his vision for Ferguson, saying he thinks one way to improve things is for the town to hire more African-American police officers. But Govan told CBS’ Jane Pauley there’s a reason you don’t see many minorities on the police force.
Look, let me tell you why: From the beginning we’ve felt abused by these people. Why would you go up to serve among the abusers? It doesn’t make any sense,” Govan said.
While, many would dismiss the point of view of an 11 year old, Marquis Govan does make an effective augment. To fight police abuse effectively, communities must have realistic expectations. You must not expect too much of any one remedy because no single remedy will cure the problem. A “mix” of reforms is required. And even after citizen action has won reforms, your community must keep the pressure on through monitoring and oversight to ensure that the reforms are actually implemented.
Nonetheless, even one person, or a small group of persistent people, can make a big difference. Sometimes outmoded and abusive police practices prevail largely because no one has ever questioned them.
CONTROL-Starts with You!
Most people (residents) don’t get it! -The community is the nexus of community justice; therefore, each individual community must began to understand that community is the preferred source of problem solving and citizens work to prevent victimization, provide conflict resolution and maintain peace. The community, including individual victims and offenders, must become the ultimate partner of the justice system for every residents safety and well-being. Here are some basic suggestions;
(The goals listed are suggestions that will ultimately provide a safe environment for all if your community or it’s officials are in any way in opposition to any goal that will promote betterment. Fight for it! Period!)
CONTROLLING THE POLICE — COMMUNITY GOALS
Control of Police Shootings
Oversight of Police Policy
Equal Employment Opportunity for Police Force. and City Offices
Certification and Licensing of Police Officers
Accreditation of Your Police Department
ORGANIZING STRATEGIES— For Communities
Use Open Records Laws
Educate the Public
Use the Political Process to Win Reforms (bad Judges, and Prosecutors must go!)
Lobby For State Legislation
Restorative and Community Justice Forums
Everyone makes mistakes-but “Restorative Justice,” is an approach to justice that doesn’t focus on the needs of the victims and the offenders, it also involves the community, instead of satisfying abstract legal principles or punishing the offender. The emphasis is on meeting the needs of and strengthening the community-Not Punishment which is the basis of the Criminal Justice System!
Community justice is a strategic method of crime reduction and prevention, which builds or enhances partnerships within communities. Community justice policies confront crime and delinquency through proactive, problem-solving practices aimed at prevention, control, reduction and reparation of the harm crime has caused.
Positive effects of a comprehensive community justice strategy:
Includes both adult and juvenile offenders;
Focuses on creating safer communities rather than on doing things to or for offenders;
Pursues the goal of public safety within a scope of preventing victimization;
Places a high priority on the rights and needs of victims and the community;
Seeks harmonious working relations among all justice components and practices, citizens, community and social service organizations, educational systems, and faith communities;
Focuses on problems causing as well as caused by crime; and
Promotes correctional programming that is based on sound research and measurable for effectiveness.
Why we need Restorative/Community Justice
Restorative justice is a practice centered on the idea that justice can be about healing instead of simply “punishment.” It emphasizes repairing harms rather than punishing crimes, giving victims and offenders the opportunity to engage in dialogue around the harm itself, assessing the impact on the victim and outlining the steps necessary to ensure offender accountability and meet the victim’s needs.
Victims take an active role in the process, while offenders are encouraged to take responsibility for their actions, “to repair the harm they’ve done—by apologizing, returning stolen money, or community service”. Restorative justice involves both victim and offender and focuses on their personal needs. In addition, it provides help for the offender in order to avoid future offences. It is based on a theory of justice that considers crime and wrongdoing to be an offence against an individual or community.
Recognize and Resolve the problem!
These efforts help to create and maintain a vital, healthy, safe and just community where crime and delinquency cannot flourish is key. Crime is confronted by addressing social disorder, criminal activities and behavior, and by holding offenders accountable for the harm they cause to victims and the community. Working to prevent crime and its harmful effects; doing justice by addressing problems rather than merely complaining, processing cases; and promoting community protection through proactive, problem-solving work practices plus interventions go along way into changing criminal behavior behavior. In short, no one deserves to lose their life for something that could have been avoided, and some cases-stories of justice may be push the limits above and beyond right and wrong. Then you must fight for your rights!