Excuse my bullshit meter for going off the charts when I heard a few days ago that the Ten Point Coalition of Indianapolis received an Award from the director of the FBI. The first question that raced through my mind was —– “for what?”
The director of The FBI bestowed the “Director’s Community Leadership Award” upon the Indy-Activism group, signifying their ” outstanding contributions to their local communities through service”. In an article by FOX59 covering the event, the Coalition was described as “receiving this award due to their work in uniting community leaders, businesses and law enforcement to address the city’s violence, recurring unemployment and lack of education”
Okay, that sounds nice enough on the surface, doesn’t it? However, there is one — tiny — problem. Last year, 2016, was the deadliest year in the history of the city of Indianapolis. The record before that? You only have to go back to the previous year of 2015. Here in 2017, Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett stated in March that the city was on pace to “shatter” the records of the previous two years.
As far as the lack of education goes, the biggest provider of education to Black students located in impoverished areas of the city, IPS, just started the process of closing 3 high schools by 2019
To be fair, none of these problems can be directly attributed to anything the group is or isn’t doing, but why exactly are they accepting awards when the situation doesn’t seem to merit any? The answer to this may lie in the person who actually was present to receive the award from the FBI Director on the groups behalf…….
I have managed to make it through the beginning of the story without even mentioning the Rev. Charles Harrison… the groups polarizing (in the black community) leader. I recently took a vow not use the word coon as freely as I did yesterday so….I won’t call him a coon — as you just saw. You can call him one for me though and it will have the same effect. One of my favorite people in the world, Ebony Chappel, Editor of The Historic Indianapolis Recorder Black Newspaper, ripped Harrison a new one last year, and I think her words are still appropriate if you’re looking for a little background. The context of this story involves Rev Harrison leading a ,
photo op, tap dancing-line, Anti-Crime March through some inner city areas of Indianapolis with then vice-presidential hopeful, Mike Pence. Since Mike Pence has never been known as a “friend of the hood” most Black people were able to see this clown show for what it really was…including Ebony, who in her piece describing the mess stated —
I know why Pence and Trump are a match made in Hell but what I don’t understand is why Charles Harrison would think it’s ok to whore out his platform and influence to someone who has quite literally shown that he does not give a damn about the marginalized.
People are upset about this and I believe their rage is justified. We are sick and tired of the okey-doke. We are sick and tired of seeing our “leaders” looking cute and dumb, guzzling down the cyanide laced Kool-Aid with smiles on their faces begging us, the proletariat to have a taste. The world is watching and Black people are hurting!
How long are we going to play these dumb games, allowing whoever has a fat check, or a nice cool spot in the Big House to come on down to the quarters for a quickie whenever they want? Do you know that they are laughing at you and at us for being so damn foolish? Situations like this are one of the reasons why we as a people can’t get ahead socially and politically. They see us as a joke and as a toy to be played with. We don’t need no more damn photo opps. We don’t need no more damn “leaders” looking for the come-up at the expense of you and I. The next time a proven bigot wants to play nice and come visit, we (Black people) need to say “Hell No!” This goes for community groups, churches, social organizations, etc.
So while Harrison got to prance for photographers and politicians once again, you have to pardon me for not rolling out the red carpet for his shallow achievement. Of the numerous activism groups in the city of Indianapolis doing actual work, the only thing he is deserving of is a large helping of criticism and side-eyes everytime he pulls one of these publicity stunts.