To Whom This May Concern

This Conversation must take place, today. R. Gibson

Malcolm X had a point (among many) which could have led to an answer, but then there was the distraction. 

Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream that would have led to an overall answer, but soon to follow came a distraction. 

President John F. Kennedy had a vision that would have developed into a conducive answer, but again came a distraction. 

This is not an exhausted list by far, various others were, and are currently on the same track as unity, peace and life, (regardless of sacrifice) but there’s something about those distractions, that proves wickedness comes thy way. I’ve named these three leaders of past, first because their stand for freedom should never be forgotten and secondly, they’ve had the largest impact, change of mindset and range of positive emotions for various ethnic backgrounds in our country.  

Their actions, words and mannerisms took form and developed into intricate building blocks so-to-speak, representative of not throwing stones but rather, creating and solidifying a foundation of honor and purpose in which to stand. And not only for Americans, but for other countries around the world to witness and take note that we are a land united “as one.” 

As a black man, I want to express in the face of pain and adversity, I’ve chosen to love anyway. I’ve chosen not to reciprocate the hatred that has been bestowed upon me relentlessly throughout my life, but this is not solely about me. It’s about the power within my (our) God given spirit to choose and react differently than what is expected by the opposers who provoke, advocate and hope for negative reactions. 

Please know that when a fist is raised in anger, so is the defense of another ready to retaliate. Also, when a voice is raised out of anger, so is the level of another, ultimately creating a chaotic sound so deafening, only rage is interpreted. This should go without saying, fighting fire with fire leads to an even larger, catastrophic fire. In this, whatever started the fire has now develop into a distraction, eventually consuming not only the point or purpose, but the resolve and prevention for present and future understandings. In the end, when there’s nothing else to consume or fuel the ignorance of rage, the fire fades away, leaving no trace of right or wrong but rather the remanence of devastation.  

Furthermore, In the face of fear and iniquity, how can one stand firm on the grounds of “an eye for an eye,” yet honestly adhere too “whosoever’s without sin, can cast the first stone?” I know this language may be foreign to some, but others in malicious regard often choose to neglect the wisdom within the passage altogether. Just know that when adversity rears its hateful head, we have a blessed opportunity and responsibility to change the rhetorical madness in and of history, for our children and future generations. Recently I wrote on conditioned fear, as the culprit and weapon of choice for those of dark intentions, now I want to shift focus on distractions. 

For the afflicted, yes, we have a right to be offended, afraid and angry. Yes, we have the right to speak up and out, but please know, we live in an aggressive, confrontational world of delusion, fear and injustice. So as a result, if you find yourself screaming aloud, acting out or retaliating because you feel you’ve never had a voice. Stop! Don’t follow suit, rebuttal or respond aggressively! Why? Because this is clearly about life or death, and you’ve been set up, dealt a bad hand, and check-mated by distractions, long before you realized this domino effect, is not a game! 

So, if you truly want your voice to be heard, don’t wait until tragedy strikes. Speak up first, in love and with purpose — readily available to lead by your best example. Don’t aggressively or suddenly become provoked and start yelling up a mountain about your rights or the lack thereof. Why? Because the broken sediments upon which you’ve stood, by not loving your neighbor, supporting your brothers and sisters through business, sickness, education or health, lay as withered sand per attrition, at the bottom of the very mountain you’ve allowed to grow insidiously beneath your feet. As such, your denial of self and purpose has become the distraction that binds you. 

And don’t say you’ve not been distracted! If you’ve invested in diamond/s for any reasons other than celebrating your wedding or heartfelt gift to a family member. That could be misconstrued as a distraction.    

If you’ve purchased wheels, rims or a stereo system and or a paint job on the car you’re driving, that hasn’t been fully paid off, that can easily be considered not only denial, but a massive distraction. 

If you’ve saved up for a vacation to patronize a beautiful resort, without taking extended family members or friends, far from your community, posed for pictures, enjoyed excursions, and came back to a diminished bank account, all to struggle/hustle and grind to pay bills, that is without doubt a distraction! 

If either the price of your smartphone, monthly car payment, rent/mortgage, watch, clothes on your back, shoes on your feet or ear buds/headphones around your neck, values more than what’s in your untouched savings account, YOU ARE DISTRACTED! Why? Because you may have bought into a system or plan, put in place for you, by choice to idolize yourself. This, over representing, and honoring what our ancestors died for i.e. your freedom. 

Here’s my point, instead of investing in future, you’ve invested in the ideology of memories, as if to replace a broken past. And although life is short and good memories are key, you’ve no return in future change or investment. In other words, you’ve been distracted by a world that idealizes, consumes and misleads you into thinking 400 years of oppression, slavery and injustice isn’t as much of factor anymore because you’ve seemingly raised up in status. As such, when reality hits the preverbal fan, you (or they) go out with raise fists and start shouting up  mountains which stands on high, not because you lack strength, intelligence or power, but because your distractions will never give way or allow you to test at a minimum, the faith of a mustard seed.  

Fortunately, our ancestor’s bloodshed, prayers and tears were not in vein. We do have a voice but know, while in the belly of the beast, your mannerism must stand in place as your voice. Your education must be indicative of your voice. Your peaceful demonstration, albeit provoked, angered and with a heavy heart, must be a glaring spiritual reflection of your voice. In this, your voice becomes that of grace and peace which will without doubt triumph over the distractions. It may not fit the sensationalism and fear-based propaganda of the media, but it will stand as a significant historical part of our legacy to be revered, acknowledged and respected as a race. 

Think about this, and let’s start a conversation that will lead to a good, and safe resolve for all, because to riot, is nothing more than an intricate tool influenced for the purpose of creating distractions.  

Again, Think About It. 

Reginald O’Neal Gibson 

The Indifference of Being (black) Different

It’s the indifference in those who claim to be law-abiding, and or “sworn in” to make a difference, which concerns me. They’ll conjuror up their worst-case scenario or fears and seemingly act out regardless of truth. 

I was once asked why are “black men so angry?” My response was “a black man doesn’t equate to being angry, a threat or a criminal, unless the guilt of another’s personal opinions and fears manifest into that personal choice of thought. I also said “a white person doesn’t equate to being a bigot, racist or supremacist, unless his/her words, actions and demeanor dictates as such. What’s the difference? Discernment, or the lack thereof. The horrific issues are people’s actions are clearly affected by their biased belief. 

I’ve been on the front line of danger from the day my pigmentation was categorized as black. In this, a threat to society and a criminal mind up to no good. Throughout the course of my life, I’ve turned the other cheek without spiteful words, malice or aggressive retaliation.  

On countless occasions I’ve turn from spit, bigotry, racist slurs, lies, defamation of character and outright acts of hate. I’ve survived from the set up and manipulation of clever attacks and the hierarchy of bias disregard, camouflaged as a “plan in place” to oppress, cage and degrade the higher purpose of me leading a life of positive example. 

Before you start to judge me, let me add that throughout my life I’ve taken responsible note and observation with the intent of survival and helping others through the darkness of conditioned ignorance. 

As such, I was (on a few occasions) told by my own race I “wasn’t black enough,” because of chosen words and pronunciation. I was also told by a devout/high ranking Ku Klux Klan member that I was “different from all the other negros,” because of my kindness. I remember asking him in response, has he ever worked with a black person before? He said no. Here’s the thing, we worked together for two years and then one day, all his recruitment and rally papers fell out of his suitcase: right in front of me! He was extremely nervous, and thought I was going to get him fired, but I didn’t. We continued to work together for another year or so without any changes, other than him freely expressing a ton of “their” tricks, ways and acts, ultimately reiterating that I was safe and considered a “great friend.” So please try and understand, I’m not expressing nonsense or a literal fit of rage. 

When I first experienced hate, I was in Kindergarten (Huffman School) and my teacher told me to sit in the back of the room. When another kid asked why? The teacher uttered “because one N**ger isn’t worth a nickel.” I pretended not to hear the comment as other kids laughed. 

My first encounter with racism was when I turned 5 years old (on Edison street), when oppressors yelled out racial slurs, finger gestures and balled fists at my father as we walked into a store. 

My firsts encounter with prejudice was when I was 6 years old, and I overheard doctors (St. Elizabeth Hospital) begrudgingly wanting to operate on my immediate need, after being hit by a car. I remember clearly one saying, “and I thought “N**gers could run fast,” and “They’re probably not insured.” 

My first encounter with bigotry was when I moved into a new school district (Eastern Denis Middle School) and I was told “not to eat in the lunchroom, ever, or my black a** would be lynched!” And I didn’t for the entire year; I was 9 years old. 

My last/current experience with all the above e.g. hatred, racism, prejudice and bigotry, has all spanned over 45 years, back to my first experience when I was just a kindergartener, I’m now 50 years old. I haven’t acted out; I haven’t been in-prisoned nor have I developed a hatred for those of other races. I’ve never shot a gun at anyone, or pulled of knife in a fight. I’ve never assaulted, mugged or harassed anyone, never sold drugs or used them and have never consumed alcohol. I’ve never committed adultery on my wife, never cheated on my taxes and I don’t eat fried chicken, but by way of insidious conditioning and profiling taught as an accepted as norm, I’m perceived to be angry, untrustworthy and a threat to society per the color of my skin. 

Here’s my point,  

Some people speak out on an incident or two, and rightfully so especially if it causes them pain, fear or injustice, but not all people speak up or out. Some people turn inwardly, becoming depressed, oppressed, angered and often enraged.  

So, when a black person is questioned and assumed guilty, by anyone abusing rank, privilege, authority and or a negative demeanor, know that the response by the black man may be filled with anxiety and an immediate fear of death! Yes, I know that “other people” may feel this statement is biased and it’s not exclusive only to black men, but please understand from my life experiences of being black, my actions, my spiritual note taking and choice of forgiving upon turned cheek after turned cheek, there’s a big difference between being a citizen and being labeled as a person of interest (throughout of lifespan).   

Furthermore, with all my years of peaceful observation, here’s a mere three statements that needs to be expressed regarding the rhetorical response of “a plan in place” to make a difference or the justification of corruption. 

Being “fired, investigated” or put on “administrative leave” doesn’t fool everyone. 

One’s indifferent “apology” doesn’t make the consequence of pain any less tolerable.  

And lastly, people know the “difference” between rioters and protesters!  

So why, why does this shock people? The mindset of It’s not difficult to explain.  

When a white woman calls 911 and says, in an erratic voice “I’m being threaten by an African American male in the park!” with spiteful intent, because the male asked her to muzzle her dog— per park regulations, her actions are most likely due to years of negative thought process and misinformation, which in turn leads to the manifestation of anger, and a spirit of hate expressed in swift action taken.

When a white police officer says, “I need to see your proof of identification,” the anxiety, fear and mental state of the black person is often reminded of trauma and years of negative labeling, injustice and hatred towards his/her image. Thus, leading one to manifest a vision of brutality, or force that could lead to his/her immediate death.  

Think about it, the response from both, white woman and black male are of conditioned fear, but not all fear is equal in its integrity. That leads me to believe that conditioned fear is the culprit, and the tool of choice, ushered in by those of dark and unscrupulous intentions, but then again, it’s all boils down to the differences of being different, and the mindset of  those who choose to be indifferent. 

Think About it. 

Reginald Gibson 

I KNOW NOTHING

Per the defining attributes, and steadfast tolerance of my life, through the trials and tribulations, successes and failures, I proclaim that I am a prudent man, wise by way of the experience gained along my personal path. What does this mean? It stands to reason, that I know nothing truly; about you. That is, other than the perceived reflective reasoning constructed throughout my own thought process, which is by safe regard mostly bias.  

Does this mean I am an authoritative figure over you, your experiences or knowledge gained? What of your opinions, perceptions and ideologies? Am I to assume I know you so well, that I can claim to be your confident, trusted source of information and or leader by way of example? No, because we are all different in ways of will, spirit and actions taken. In this, we share a different view of reality per the experiences of our lives. 

With this said, know that although “we are as one,” we progress through life on many different levels. The levels of our accomplishments and struggles helps define our innermost-being ways of actions taken. So, it goes to say that where you are in life right now, is only a temporary reflection of possible outcomes you can either maintain, flourish or deviate from. You by way of thought process, faith, physical accountability and actions taken can develop and manifests your hearts’ greatest desires, and even more so, live in the purpose of your blessed creation.  

Bottom line, do I know you? No. 

Do I love you, Yes! 

So, the question is how can a person love without knowing? A better question would be, how can a person know without loving? 

The answer is, to love someone or something doesn’t require that you “know” them. It only requires that you have a loving heart that’s faithful enough, and strong enough to see past the reflective moments in time.  

With this, one can solidify a foundation of love worth manifesting, cultivating and harvesting upon our journey in life. This is the mindset of leadership. This is the mindset of valor. And most of all, this is the mindset of a prudent heart who’s willing to admit he/she knows nothing at all, but the love of God embedded within the spirit. 

It is said that knowledge is power, is it? Think about it, by now this world with all the benefit of history written, knowledge shared and paid for within the hierarchy of our educational system, one would be inclined to think wisdom above all would rule the land of today, but it appears not. Again, this is just a moment in time reflective of our choices, voices and actions taken.   

Here’s what I believe. Knowledge is indeed powerful, so powerful that it once was forbidden to eat of its fruit, but that’s another story. 

Just know that if a heart is filled with love, a course correction so-to-speak can come to pass as a vibrant light within the darkness, but without love, knowledge would be tainted with corruption, a fallacy positioned behind status and paper, manipulated by the ill will of ignorance which by definition reflects the lack of knowledge thereof. 

We as the descendants of our ancestors need to be reminded to love, and embrace “as one” without the misinformation of judgement, bias disregard and hatred. Know that as a child we didn’t think to hate, we were taught hate. And although it’s in the Bible, we weren’t “taught” to love thy neighbors, we were shown not to trust our neighbors. Think about it and be completely honest, do you trust your neighbor or at any given moment in time, are you prepared to make a statement on the six o’clock news resembling the likes of “we’ve lived across the street from him for years, and we’re not that type of neighborhood!” 

Please understand that what you or I think we know, isn’t enough within our timeline of worldly misinformation but, if we can somehow induce what has already been embedded as love, by the creator that is love, we not only have a chance of knowing, but being a part of something of true power and everlasting value. 

If I know anything, I know that “I know nothing” at all (within this timeframe) and as such, wisdom is only the beginning but then again . . . what do I know. 

Think About it. 

Reginald O’Neal Gibson