Open Letter To The Black Community: You Are Responsible For Your Negative Portrayal In The Media
Open Letter To The Black Community: You Are Responsible For Your Negative Portrayal In The MediaOpen Letter To The Black Community: You Are Responsible For Your Negative Portrayal In The Media
They say there's not enough good role models within the black community. The truth is, there's not enough real black supporters in the community helping to promote our many Youth Coaches, Fitness Trainers, Activists, Health & Herbal Specialists, Teachers, Entrepreneurs, Authors, Directors, Nutritionists and many other Afro-Americans that are making a difference. The real network isn't a Major TV or Radio Corporation. The real network starts with black people in our communities supporting and promoting each others positive work. Most of us only embrace and promote negativity or ratchet behavior! What images are we bombarded with that we choose to promote and share on a daily basis? Some of the most common themes/ culprits are the "ghetto" street fights, big booty twerkin videos, silly commentary on mundane topics, celebrity gossip, outlandish loud mouths being ignorant, mentally challenged individuals saying "funny" things and a host of other stereotypical behaviors that we ourselves are responsible for perpetuating. Furthermore, the few black networks that we do have promote the same buffoonery.
I personally have done so much for my Community, Kids, Cancer projects, Prestigious Universities, TV, Radio, Fighting Homelessness, Fitness events and more. Yet the Black Community says that there aren't enough strong black men out here? That's not true! The Black Community and it's network are overlooking black men like myself for the mass majority of ignorant news, gossip and drama! And this is why the white media only covers the negative aspects because they figure if the Black Media & Community aren't covering positive news of their own people- neither should we! It all starts with what images we choose to promote within our own community that the "white" media then follows. We have to take responsibility as being the source of the negative images portrayed by the media since that's the way we first portrayed ourselves!
This is how a positive male role model and trendsetter like myself becomes the unsung hero of the urban and white community. The reason why I mention the white community is because I don't discriminate in helping a child or adult to reach their full potential by living a healthy way of life. However, the fact remains positive images of black men and women remain unheralded and that's what bothers me. I'm sure if I committed a crime, my face would be all over TV and go viral on social media. Why does it take something bad to happen for the people to know about it....why?
My story is that I came from humble beginnings, being homeless on the streets of DC while attending Howard University, to eventually becoming one of New York's Top Fitness Trainers and Youth Development Specialist. I've been recognized on a regional level for my work by mayors, professional athletes, entertainers, magazines and major corporations. I've become an international traveler and blogger, living abroad 30 to 60 days at a time in a different country every other month. Earlier this year, I even signed to one of the number one modeling agencies. All that being said, I'm sure you've never heard of me or countless others who are being constructive and truly impacting the world in a positive way.
So the next time you make a post about how we need more "so-called" black men to step up, analyze what you've been giving your attention to. We have the power to change the tide using social media to promote black excellence! If we don't truly support and uplift each other- who will?
Building a foundation starts within the community. We can't scream out we want change when we don't even support our black men and women who are actually out here creating change for our people and for the human race in general.
I truly hope this post touches and inspires someone to understand that change can happen if we take responsibility for the images and things we post on our social media. As Mahatma Gandhi once said, "Be the change you wish to see in the world".
This post is dedicated to all of the positive leaders in the black community who are making a difference every day. Continue the great work!
I Am Salim El Bey