The Essence of Politics

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

My Perspective: More Charter Schools Are on the Way to Detroit

The battle lines have been drawn in the sand in regards to education in the City of Detroit. It is clear that with Detroit Public Schools failing track record and instability to manage its budget, the state of Michigan and others around the state as well as key figures in Detroit are pushing for charter schools to be a key component to reform in Detroit’s educational landscape. With more school closures in Detroit, the opportunity to open up more charters has been ramped up due to DPS Emergency Financial Manager Robert Bobb’s comments regarding using federal dollars to build a new Mumford High School before possibly turning it over to a charter school company to manage.

Bobb revealed that DPS’s deficit is $430 million up from the $305 million he thought it would be and he spoke of how federal stimulus money would be coming to DPS to help build a new Finney High and a new kindergarten through 8th grade school. However at the same time, Bobb said the next installment of funds would go to making a new Mumford before it is handed over to be managed by Doug Ross’s nonprofit charter school management company, New Urban Learning. Ross is the founder of University Preparatory Academy charter school and the revelation that DPS is in talks with his company gives the charter school movement signs that DPS is finally ready to embrace charter’s like never before. Robert Bobb stated that the good news is that both DPS and charters are at the table and Ross isn’t the only charter school company meeting with the district but several have. In fact 40 schools that are to be reformed next year may become charter schools or managed by companies.

The only question is whether or not the new charters will be under the umbrella of DPS or not similar to the models of charter school academies that were implemented in Chicago and that President Obama and U.S. Secretary of Education Arnie Duncan have taunted. But nonetheless Bobb’s comments at the Detroit Athletic Club during and after the Pancakes and Politics forum on the city's educational crises have awoken many to the issue that DPS will no longer be the main player in terms of education in the city of Detroit. DPS is facing the nation's largest school closure, enrollment decline and budget woes but the district is talking about allowing more charters in which could add to DPS’s enrollment decline as well as more school closures due to shrinking student enrollment.

Now Keith Johnson, president of the Detroit Federation of Teachers, said "DPS has not had a sustainable plan." This is true, DPS doesn’t have a clear cut academic plan and hasn’t had won for nearly or decade or more. You can see that by achievement gap in DPS compared to other school districts. Thus Johnson’s comments states a concern that many in DPS particularly educators and those who work in the schools have stated for nearly a decade. Under the state takeover, DPS began perhaps its sharpest decline in academic achievement and its drop out rate rose greater with the greatest increase starting after students finished the 6th grade.

But still DPS is in negotiations with charters not because it is academically better for students but for financial reasons. While in talks with charter schools about reforming some DPS schools, Bobb pointed out that DPS is financially hurt when students return to DPS from charter schools. Keith Johnson, president of the Detroit Federation of Teachers agreed. Too often students transfer back to DPS after the charter schools have collected the funding, heaping "the burden of educating those children on us without the necessary finances." But Ross said schools need not fight over students and school choice. "They're all our children." But while they are all our children, it is clear that many students enroll in other school districts but those school districts only tolerate them up until the point when those students finances are processed before kicking those students. Thus those students are forced to return to DPS particularly their neighborhood school where they are now sharing some of the finances of another student. So imagine if there are at least 1,000 or more of these students, it limits the amount of funding a school can use in order to help students achieve. While other school districts usually have a surplus of funds they can use toward student achievement and other things because they got the money for students who aren’t even there anymore.

Still, the debate over charter schools is heating up in Detroit like never before and it seems as if DPS is at the bargaining table with charters so charters are on the way because of this talk. However the other key factor in this equation is mayoral control of DPS as well as the appointment of two new board members with one being former Deputy Mayor under Kilpatrick, Adams. Thus with Bing saying he would welcome control of DPS and U.S. Secretary of Education Duncan supporting mayoral control of major school districts because that’s how it is in Chicago despite Chicago schools not be better than other urban school districts but still this is the notion that has Bing talking about education. Bing has repeatedly since winning the mayoral talked about education more than he talked about during his campaign.

Then with Bing hiring a well-respected, high level advisor on education, Sue Carnell, to be on his staff, it signals all the more that Bing wants control of DPS because why would he hire her if he didn’t plan to do something with the schools. So with talk of charter schools and a pro-charter mayor wanting control of DPS, it is clear that DPS will never be the same again and those in the charter movement are gaining significant allies with the City of Detroit and Detroit Public Schools. The writing is on the wall and unless a huge wave of anti-charter people steps forward with a big name attached to the movement, it is now a train set in motion that charters are coming and it is just a matter of paperwork now before it is a done deal.

Just for more about the school reform movement, read the article below that came from the Detroit Free Press. It sums up just what is taking place and how it is going down. So the charter movement can rejoice with the school reform that is soon to take place but no matter what reform comes, it has to deal with student achievement because that is what the kids of the City of Detroit need. Regardless if it is charter or public, education has to be able to create a better educational environment than the one the children of the City of Detroit is currently receiving. So it doesn’t matter if a mayor controls schools, a traditional school board/superintendent does or a charter school management company because they all have to put together a plan that will deal with sustaining education in Detroit for years to come. It is about the youth and educating them the best way possible so they can compete globally in the future.

School reform ideas finally gain steam
For years, Michigan's education debate has sounded like two divorced spouses, arguing over who ruined their miserable marriage.

One spouse is the older, more established partner, the teacher unions. They blame everyone else but themselves for so many schools' lousy quality. Their leaders, particularly at the Michigan Education Association, have trapped in a self-made world of victimhood and denial.

The other, younger spouse is no less culpable, stuck in the same self-deceptive world. That spouse is the charter school movement, which overall has produced schools so pathetic in communities such as Detroit, they're pretty much as dismal as the traditional public schools. As Los Angeles Green Dot 'Our schools suck a little less charter school operator Steve Barr puts it: " than the public schools' isn't exactly an inspirational rallying cry."

Finally, though, after years of suffering in the educational equivalent of the Sahara Desert, Michigan seems to be opening up to water and growth for students -- or at least the idea of them.

Lobbyists on both sides of the aisle are exploring taking more responsibility for their own work, and thinking about how student achievement should become more of a priority.

In Lansing groups such as MAPSA, the Michigan Association of Public School Academies -- the state's
powerful political lobbyists on behalf of charter schools -- long have fought to lift the state's cap on new charter schools, regardless of their schools' success. Now it says quality should be more carefully considered in that equation.

Smart growth
Think smart growth for schools. MAPSA is among the state's education power brokers exploring a strong idea: a "smart cap" for charter schools. Such a cap could be done in many different ways, but the overall goal is worthwhile: supporting the creation of proven, excellent charter schools for children who need them -- and squashing the bad ones, either through closings or limiting their expansion, or ideally, both.

"There's a growing realization that the real issue here is quality," says Doug Ross, the leader of Detroit's University Prep Academy network of schools, whose charter group will explore partnering with the Detroit Public Schools on school turnarounds. "If you have high quality, the quantity will follow."

Hopeful shift
This is a fundamental shift, and a hopeful one. And it's not just happening on the generally Republican, pro-charter side of the political spectrum.

A growing number of state Democrats such as Rep. Tim Melton, D-Pontiac, are rightfully looking at charters as a solution -- or helpful threat -- to push Michigan's worst public schools to do better. Melton is from Pontiac, where the high schools' student achievement records are so awful, some of their scores are actually lower than Detroit's.

We do tragedy well in our urban schools -- and it is criminal.

School districts such as Pontiac and Benton Harbor need miracle workers to come in and clean up their failing schools just as Robert Bobb is doing in Detroit. These children shouldn't have to go to classes in virtual cesspools.

Bobb, Detroit Public Schools' emergency financial manager, realizes exceptional charter operators should play a role in Detroit, too. Bobb confirmed Thursday he is considering charters as potential reform partners in overhauling chronically failing public schools, and opening strong new ones under the DPS umbrella.

This is nothing less than extraordinary in Detroit, where many circles have treated the word "charters" has been treated much like a cuss word.

Now it looks as though Detroit Mayor Dave Bing may use that disdain -- and legitimate concern over many Detroit charter schools' poor track records -- to leverage public support for mayoral control over the Detroit Public Schools.

If you missed it, a Bing Twitter page posted a curious statement on June 15 on www.twitter.com/davebing: "I think it would be smart for the state to give my office control over Detroit Public Schools since privatization has failed and again."

Mayor-controlled charters?
That's a clever argument. Lots of Detroiters don't like charter schools, even the better ones, because they drain resources away from traditional public schools, which increasingly serve the city's most vulnerable children. The district's percentage of special education, learning disabled and English as a Second Language students continues to rise, presenting education innovators with a truly troubling policy problem.

Bing's staff said last week it didn't post the controversial Tweet, adding the new mayor's official stance on mayoral control (summed up by "I leave it up to voters") hasn't changed.

Those of us who follow educational news were left confused. Bing's staff said it wasn't Bing's Twitter page that posted the statement, but it sure looked like Bing's Twitter page. His staff also didn't deny any of the other Bing Tweets (such as "Go Red Wings!") on the site were illegitimate. If Bing has an imposter out there, he's doing a good job.

Regardless of who posted the Tweet, one has to think Bing has education plans. After all, the new mayor has hired a well-respected, high-level advisor on education, Sue Carnell, to be on his staff -- and he wouldn't need her if he didn't plan to do something with the schools. Look for more on how he'll handle this politically sensitive issue in the coming months.

Wouldn't it be ironic if in time, Bing assumed mayoral management of public school district (a great thing) that included a number of charter schools through an anti-charter campaign?

Whoever posted the Tweet, change is a-percolating on the education front this summer.

What remains to be seen: whether those changes will make student achievement -- the whole purpose of public education -- their top priority.

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Jay-Z - History



(Jay-Z - History)Jay-Z - History with Lyrics

LYRICS : [Chorus: Cee-lo]
Now that all the smoke is gone
(Lighter)
And the battle's finally won
(Gimme a lighter)
Victory (Lighters up) is finally ours
(Lighters up)
History, so long, so long
So long, so long

[Verse 1: Jay-Z]
In search of victory, she keeps eluding me
If only we could be together momentarily
We can make love and make history
Why won't you visit me? until she visit me
I'll be stuck with her sister, her name is defeat
She gives me agony, so much agony
She brings me so much pain, so much misery
Like missing your last shot and falling to your knees
As the crowd screams for the other team
I practice so hard for this moment, victory don't leave
I know what this means, I'm stuck in this routine
Whole new different day, same old thing
All I got is dreams, nobody else can see
Nobody else believes, nobody else but me
Where are you victory? I need you desperately
Not just for the moment, to make history

[Chorus: Cee-lo]
Now that all the smoke is gone
(Lighters)
And the battle's finally won
(Lighters)
Victory is finally ours
(Yeah)
History (yeah), so long, so long
So long, so long

[Verse 2: Jay-Z]
So now I'm flirting with death, hustling like a G
While victory wasn't watching took chances repeatedly
As a teenage boy before acne, before I got proactiv I couldn't face she
I just threw on my hoodie and headed to the street
That's where I met success, we'd live together shortly
Now success is like lust, she's good to the touch
She's good for the moment but she's never enough
Everybody's had her, she's nothing like V
But success is all I got unfortunately
But I'm burning down the block hoppin' in and out of V
But something tells me that there's much more to see
Before I get killed because I can't get robbed
So before me success and death ménage
I gotta get lost, I gotta find V
We gotta be together to make history

[Chorus: Cee-lo]
Now that all the smoke is gone
(Lighters. Up.)
And the battle's finally won
(Lighter. Up.)
Victory is finally ours
(Lighters. Up.)
History, so long, so long
So long, so long

[Verse 3: Jay-Z]
Now victory is mine, it tastes so sweet
She's my trophy wife, you're coming with me
We'll have a baby who stutters repeatedly
We'll name him history, he'll repeat after me
He's my legacy, son of my hard work
Future of my past, he'll explain who I be
Rank me amongst the greats, either 1, 2, or 3
If I ain't number one then I failed you victory
Ain't in it for the fame that dies within weeks
Ain't in it for the money, can't take it when you leave
I wanna be remembered long after you grieve
Long after I'm gone, long after I breathe
I leave all I am in the hands of history
That's my last will and testimony
This is much more than a song, it's a baby shower
I've been waiting for this hour, history you ours


[Chorus: Cee-lo (2x)]
Now that all the smoke is gone
And the battle's finally won
Victory is finally ours
History, so long, so long
So long, so long



Man in the Mirror--By Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson - Man in the mirror

I'm gonna make a change,
for once im my life
It's gonna feel real good,
gonna make a diference
Gonna make it right...

As I, turn up the collar on
my favorite winter coat
This wind is blowing my mind
I see the kids in the streets,
with not enought to eat
Who am I to be blind?
Pretending not to see their needs

A summer disregard,a broken bottle top
And a one man soul
They follow each other on the wind ya' know
'Cause they got nowhere to go
That's why I want you to know

I'm starting with the man in the mirror
I'm asking him to change his ways
And no message could have been any clearer
If you wanna make the world a better place
(If you wanna make the world a better place)
Take a look at yourself, and then make a change
(Take a look at yourself, and then make a change)
(Na na na, na na na, na na, na nah)

I've been a victim of a selfish kind of love
It's time that I realize
That there are some with no home, not a nickel to loan
Could it be really me, pretending that they're not alone?

A willow deeply scarred, somebody's broken heart
And a washed-out dream
(Washed-out dream)
They follow the pattern of the wind ya' see
'Cause they got no place to be
That's why I'm starting with me
(Starting with me!)

I'm starting with the man in the mirror
(Ooh!)
I'm asking him to change his ways
(Ooh!)
And no message could have been any clearer
If you wanna make the world a better place
(If you wanna make the world a better place)
Take a look at yourself, and then make a change
(Take a look at yourself, and then make a change)

I'm starting with the man in the mirror
(Ooh!)
I'm asking him to change his ways
(Change his ways - ooh!)
And no message could have been any clearer
If you wanna make the world a better place
Take a look at yourself and then make that..
(Take a look at yourself and then make that..)
CHANGE!

I'm starting with the man in the mirror
(Man in the mirror - Oh yeah!)
I'm asking him to change his ways
(Better change!)
No message could have been any clearer
(If you wanna make the world a better place)


Michael Jackson - Man in the mirror

A Change is Gonna Come by Sam Cook






It's been a long time coming but a change is surely going to come in America and the World! I am the Future of America and the World and that is the message that each of us must carry with us each and every day that we wake up on Earth! I am the Future! You are the Future! We are the Future of America and the World! That is way every election is important--primaries, special elections and general! So vote every year and hold our politicians accountable. Hold our political officials accountable by writing them, calling them and making sure they attend meetings that we the people have. "The Time for Change is not Now but Right Now!"

"EmPOWERment By Any Means Necessary" should be our anthem and should be our creed as we make the positive differences in America and the world that so many people beg for and hungry for year after year! A Change is Gonna Come, A Change is Gonna Come, that's what we must say as we say "God grants us the serenity to accept the things we cannot change, Courge to change the things we can, and the wisdom to know the difference" each morning before we go about the task of making a positive change in America and the world a reality.



Born In The U.S.A. - Bruce Springsteen


“When will people realize that we are Americans first and foremost, not Democrats or Liberals, not Republicans or Conservatives, not Independents or moderates. We are Americans. Stop putting a political party above America and stop putting any politican above America. America succeeds because of us the people holding our government responsible no matter the political party because the main two political parties are to blame for the condition America is in."—Hodari P.T. Brown

America with its flaws and all is a country I am proud to have been born in. America is not perfect but my love for it is perfect. That’s why all Americans must realize that we are all Americans. In fact we are Americans first and foremost. We are not Democrats or Republicans. We are Americans.

We are not Muslims, Christians or Jews. We are Americans. Too many times we recognize our differences with others rather than appreciating our similarities which are, we are Americans. We are Americans first and foremost, no matter if we were born here or moved here legally. We are all Americans, here in this country to make not only our lives better but the lives of other Americans better so future Americans can enjoy the rights and freedoms that make us all Americans.

We are all Americans. We are one party united under God. We are Americans and this is the only political party that matters. We are Americans and this is our country so let’s make sure that we make America better than how we found it so future Americans can live prosperous and joyous lives. We are Americans and must not ever forget that.

America will prosper as long we make sure we are doing our part to make it prosper and that means we can’t put any political party or politician above America. Long live America forever and long live America’s service to the world. Together, America and the world will prosper for future generations to enjoy America and the world we live in.


Lift Every Voice and Sing


This video of the ' Negro National Anthem' was originally screened at the historic African-American Church Inaugural Ball in Washington, DC on January 18th, 2009. Many of the esteemed individuals featured in this video in attendance and we presented with the ' Keepers of the Flame' award for the monumental contributions to social justice.

This version of the song was performed by the Grace Baptist Church Cathedral Choir, conducted by Derrick James. The video was produced and donated by Ascender Communications, LLC (www.ascender-c.com) at the request of The Balm In Gilead, Inc.

If I Was President--Wyclef Jean




If I was President that is the people's anthem. We all have ideas of what we can do as President and through this website, we will fulfill our deam as a people!

Somethings Gotta Give--Big Boi ft Mary J Blige



Somethings Gotta Give people and it begins today for all us to make sure that something is us. We the people are sick and tired of suffering. Where is our piece of the Dream that so many people dead for so that we all could see today. This is our time people to change America and the world so that the Next Generation has a better future than the past we inherited.

This is our call to service. This isn't about one political candidate or one political figure. This is about us as people coming together to finally leave up to our potential and achieving the great feats that those before us have achieved. This is our moment to lead our nation and our world to greater heights.

Somethings gotta give people and it starts with us the people making it happen. We have to improve our education system in America. We have to rid the world of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. We have to go to the streets and lift a hand to another in order to decrease poverty in this world. We have to take a stand today and make sure that the future of America and the world is brighter than it has ever been.

Somethings Gotta Give and that is why we must "Remember Each One, Reach One and Teach One so America's future and the World's future continues to prosper."

John Legend - "If You're Out There"


If you're out there than you need to get started in helping to change America and the world. The world and America won't change until you get involved in making the changes you want to see in this world. If you're out there, than you must know that tomorrow started now and today started yesterday so you are behind in helping to the change. If you are tired of hatred, racism, poverty, war, and violence than the time to change it is now. If you want universal health care, world peace, democracy for every nation, equal rights, and happiness for all than you must get involved now to help the save world.

You must believe in the change that you want to see and you must act on making that change a reality. If you're out there than say it aloud and show the rest of America and the world that you're out here to make a real positive change in the communities we stay in. If you're out there than get involved now. I'm calling every women and men to join me as we take back our country right here, right now. If you're out there than the future started yersterday and we are already late so we have lots of work to do but I know we can do it together as one.

YES WE CAN



Yes We Can accomplish anything that we set out to do! We don't need charismatic or inspirational leaders to believe in ourselves and to take responsiblity for our own faith, we just need each other. Yes We Can build a new America and a new world if each of us would take action now to make the changes that we want to see in the world. Yes We Can control government by holding our political officials accountable for their actions by calling them out when they don't pass legislation that supports the common good of all man and by voting in every election to ensure that we have people representing the people locally, state wide, nationally and in the world.

Yes We Can be great! Yes We Can be what we want to be! Yes We Can be glorious in not only America but the world! Yes We can put action behind our worlds and change the world starting right here, right now! Yes We Can as Republicans, Democrats and Independents become one as we freely think about our fellow men and women and make decisions that will be in the best interest of all people and not one single group.

Yes We Can be the change that we want to see in the world! Yes We Can show the world that the youth are ready to lead! Yes We Can put our egos, our social economic statuses, our religions, our educational statuses and our skin color to the side for the better good of the world! Yes We Can be Greater than we have ever been and help others be Greater than they have ever be!

YES WE CAN and YES WE WILL BE VICTORIOUS IN ALL THAT WE DO! YES WE CAN, no matter what others may say, we will be glorious! YES WE WILL and YES WE CAN! YES WE CAN!

YES WE CAN! YES WE CAN! YES WE CAN is what will be sung from every mountaintop, every riverbank, every household, every school yard, every factory, every sporting event, every college campus and even every place you can imagine in the world is where YES WE CAN, will be said and heard!

YES WE CAN!

Keep On Pushing - Curtis Mayfield & the Impressions


Wake Up People! No matter who is elected to any public office, we have to “Keep On Pushing” as a people to make sure they don’t leave us in a worst state than what they inherited. We as a people have to “Keep On Pushing” to make a difference in the lives of others. We have to have an “EmPOWERment By Any Means Necessary” attitude as we continue to push our agenda that we the people deserve and want better. We have to “Keep On Pushing” to bring about change in a positive way that will benefit all Americans no matter their age, their religion or skin color. We have to “Keep On Pushing” to bring about change that will improve our education system, improve our military, improve our national security, improve our healthcare system and improve our economy. We have to “Keep On Pushing” to bring about change that will leave America’s future in a better than how we found it and that will leave the world’s future in a better state than we imagined we could live it. We have to “Keep On Pushing” to make life better for our neighborhoods, our families and even our quote on quote enemies. We have to “Keep On Pushing” to inspire, to uplift and to guide those who need help spiritually, physically and mentally. We have to “Keep On Pushing ” so that our lives, our future generation’s lives and the lives of those who came before us does not die in vein.

“Keep on Pushing”

A War For Your Soul

A War For Your Soul-regular version from Erisai Films on Vimeo.


The moment has come for us as a nation of people to finally wake up and realize that our destiny and fate in society has rests on our shoulders. We cannot allow the forces of evil and darkness to drain us out. We have to continue to overcome all odds in order to make the future of our nation better and the future of future generations of Americans better. We have to continue to pray to our Lord and we have to continue to uplift each other in prayer as well as take action against those things that are trying to destroy us. We have to stand up once and for all and be the future that we want to be. Now is our time and we shall do together by any means necessary.

This video was created to inspire young African-Americans not to fall prey to some of the problems they face in society. The use of the voice "Master of Darkness" represents evil, which is where the blame of all problems should be placed, and not on any one group of people. This video should not to be used to divide people (Black & White), there are images of heroes that are white in this video, and there are images of Black & White coming together with the words of Dr. King in the background. Some of the images from the past can be unsettling, but they are used to show all Americans how far we have come, and how far we still have to go. This film is being strategically placed in school systems, churches and youth orgs around the country, in hope of helping a lost generation of kids that we as Americans have forgotten. As fellow Americans we must continue to love each other, and take that love and spread it to the rest of the world. **THIS VIDEO IS NOT FOR SALE & I AM NOT ACCEPTING DONATIONS FOR THE FILM, I ONLY WANT THE MESSAGE TO REACH AS MANY PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE WITHOUT ANY HIDDEN POLITICAL OR FINANCIAL AGENDA.
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Sitting On the Dock of the Bay by Otis Redding



"The time for sitting is over! The time for action is now! The time for hope without action is hopeless! The time for change without a positive attitude is a change that we can't believe in! We need change that is positive of helping all people! Our time for action is now, our time for hope is now, our time for change is now and our time to believe that we can do whatever we set our minds to is not now but right now!"

STAR SPANGLED BANNER


The Star-Spangled Banner by Francis Scott Key

O say, can you see, by the dawn's early light,
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight's last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars through the perilous fight,
O'er the ramparts we watched were so gallantly streaming;
And the rocket's red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there;
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave?


On the shore dimly seen through the mists of the deep,
Where the foe's haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o'er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows, now conceals, now discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning's first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines on the stream;
'Tis the star-spangled banner; O long may it wave
O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave!

And where is that band who so vauntingly swore
That the havoc of war and the battle's confusion
A home and a country should leave us no more?
Their blood has washed out their foul footsteps' pollution.
No refuge could save the hireling and slave,
From the terror of flight and the gloom of the grave;
And the star-spangled banner in triumph doth wave
O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave!


O! thus be it ever, when freemen shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n-rescued land,
Praise the power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, for our cause it is just.
And this be our motto— "In God is our trust; "
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free, and the home of the brave.

Black President



Our Time is not now but Right Now! Our Time has finally come to change the world not now but Right Now! If you don't believe that we can change the world than watch as we do it by changing your mind into believing in us and what we can do! This is OUR TIME RIGHT HERE, RIGHT NOW!

FIGHT THE POWER



We got to FIGHT THE POWER! We can no longer sit on the sidelines and watch injustices take place. We can no longer sit by and allow our right to vote to become unexercised. We must FIGHT THE POWER for our past, present and future! We can no longer allow our rights to be oppressed and our voice to become drained by the powers at be. We must FIGHT THE POWER and show that we have a lot to say that needs to be heard by the mainstream media. We must FIGHT THE POWER and live up to our potential as dynamic, unbelievable and phenomenal people.


We must not believe the hype but we must become the hype. We are not Harriett Tubman, Marcus Garvey, MLK, Malcolm X, Booker T. Washington, Carter G. Woodson, W.E.B. DuBois, the Black Panther Party, SNCC, or any other activists but we are the fathers, mothers, sons, daughters, uncles, aunties, and relatives of those who came before us to pave the way for us to FIGHT THE POWER! We are not next Generation of leaders who will not be honored and praised until they die but that’s the fight we accept. We are not fighting the power for glory or fame but we are fighting the power for just causes that most men and women will not understand until years or decades later.


We are fighting for our sisters and brothers in Darfur, Georgia, Iraq, Iran, China and Mexico. We are speaking for those who are poor and have no food or water. We are fighting for those who are sick and dying. We are fighting for universal healthcare across the world and human rights for all people. We are fighting for rich and poor! We must FIGHT THE POWER no matter how hard and tough the road may be. We must FIGHT THE POWER for a better today and an even greater tomorrow!


FIGHT THE POWER!

PEOPLE GET READY


“People Get Ready” our time is coming! We have come too far to turn back now. Our train is coming and it is coming in waves. “People Get Ready”, we don’t need a ticket but we need faith and the Lord will help guide us as we take back America and the world. “People Get Ready” our moment is now and we are ready to see the change we want in America and the world. All we got to do is have faith, hope and prosperity. “People Get Ready” to face your fears. “People Get Ready” to face your demons and the challenges of yesterday because today and tomorrow we will conquer & be victorious. “People Get Ready” a change is coming and our actions will make sure that change is a real positive change that lasts forever.


“People Get Ready” because we have had enough of just talking but now is our time to show action. “People Get Ready” to take back America and the world. “People Get Ready” to take back our communities and to make our streets safer and schools better. “People Get Ready” to make all our dreams come true. “People Get Ready” to see a better present for everyone and a better future for future generations. “People Get Ready” to live up to your potential and to help others live up to their own potential. “People Get Ready” to move past hatred, bigotry, racism and sexism. “People Get Ready” to fulfill the dreams of those who came before us and those who will come after us.


“People Get Ready” as we make our actions speak louder than our words. “People Get Ready” to make words mean something again as we put action to back up our rhetoric. “People Get Ready” as we embark on a new journey that will re-write America’s history as well as the world’s history. “People Get Ready” as we make the lives of others better and the lives of future generations better. “People Get Ready” because all we need is faith, hope and action to make this world a better place. “People Get Ready” to make a difference. “People Get Ready” to fulfill the American dream. “People Get Ready" to live out the American Dream as our founding fathers wanted us to live it. “People Get Ready” because our time is now, our moment is now and our moment in time to change America & the world is not now but right now. “People Get Ready” because a change is coming!


Alicia]
(Let me tell you now)
People get ready, there's a train comin'
You don't need no baggage, you just get on board
All you need is faith to hear the diesels hummin'
You don't need no ticket, you just thank the lord

[Lyfe]
People get ready, for a train to Jordan
Picking up passengers coast to coast
Faith is the key, open the doors and board them
There's hope for all among those loved the most

[Alicia]
There ain't no room for the hopeless sinner
Who would hurt all man kind just to save his own (believe me now)
Have pity on those whose chances grow thinner
For there's no hiding place against the kingdoms throne

[Alicia & Lyfe]
So people get ready there's a train coming
You don't need no baggage, you just get on board
All you need is faith to hear the diesels humming,
You don't need no ticket, you just thank the lord


“PEOPLE GET READY!”

God Bless the U.S.A. by Lee Greenwood


Lee Greenwood-god bless the U.S.A