“The most dangerous creation in any society is the man who has nothing to lose.” – James Baldwin
I want to preface this by saying that this is not a slight towards any community organization. We are all trying to find a remedy to curtail the violence within our community. But I have to mention that there is a vicious cycle that seems to have been consistent over the years in Paterson.
In customary fashion, we march, we pray, they keep shooting. We march. We pray. They keep shooting. Every single act of violence is one too many. I’m seriously at a loss for words. I don’t know what it’s going to take but we have to do something more than just marching and praying.
Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against a good march and a good prayer. But something more has to happen. Something substantial that can actually bring the community together without sectarian ideologies. We need practical tangible and realistic solutions to the problems we face as a community. I can speak this way because I am an active activist, not in word only. I’m actually out here every day in the community, primarily assisting parents with educational issues. The way children are educated plays a big role in the life and or death of any community.
So again, I don’t know exactly what we’re going to have to do but all I know is we have to do something and it must include more than just marching and praying. We have to create a network that serves the community on all levels, 24-hours a day, 7-days a week, 365-days a year.
Hopelessness has set in, and we had better understand that and work on addressing it, immediately. Otherwise, the demonstrations, rallies and prayer walks will continue to serve no purpose other than to provide a platform for politicians and aspiring politicians.
Corey L. Teague