Transparency.org’s Corruption Perceptions Index, “which ranks 180 countries and territories by their perceived levels of public sector corruption according to experts(?) And business people...” states that no country is free of public sector corruption. Of course this comes as no surprise to the overwhelming majority of the citizens of any of these countries but it deserves a mention here nonetheless. If for no other reason than the not so obvious one that in all the world, wherever people are suffering and/or dying local leadership is often complicit if not wholly responsible for it.
There seems to be a lot of energy surrounding the Global Citizen Movement but before going all in take a good hard look at their leaders. If a picture is worth a thousand words from the looks of this image who’s talking to whom and at who’s expense?
Extreme poverty will end when you demand your governments stop colonizing the economies of weak, injured and/or struggling nations while exploiting their citizens. A commitment from governments and politicians to spend more is not the solution although it may help some activists sleep better at night in the comfy confines of their mansions, penthouses and/or gated communities.
Imperialist agendas, campaigns of destabilization, theft of resources, corruption, exploitation, the funding and support of rogue militias and the colonization of economies are the causes of extreme poverty and they are also the reasons money is diverted from those who need it most. Petitioning governments and politicians to give back a small portion of what they stole, while maintaining the extractive institutions, corporations and channels through which the wealth of targeted nations flow from the coffers of that state, with the help of corrupt local leadership, into the coffers and economies of those who control those channels, corporations and institutions disproportionately, is not a substantive solution.
In a world of limited resources and in an age of extremes, if there will be mega billionaires, be they individuals or corporations, that disproportionately possess the overwhelming majority of wealth there will also be extremely impoverished people, communities and nations. Giving back less than 1% of what you took by crook or hook doesn’t begin to solve the problems that you've created.
Don’t get me wrong it’s always good to see people helping people regardless of their class, color or nationality. It’s just that as a people we, Afro Americans, seem to suffer from “Pfleger-itis,” a predisposition to be more receptive to ideas and suggestions from Caucasians than from others, especially those from their own group. I understand that this is a byproduct of the cultural conditioning we’ve experienced here in America as second and at times third class citizens. But it’s time we recognize this and take preventative steps to avoid making the same mistakes that has cost us so much in the past.
We have to ask and answer the question, are you Going My Way? We have to ask this of every leader, movement, special interest group and yes social network that we join and/or support.
We have to know where the movement is going before agreeing to join or support it. Just because something sounds good doesn’t mean it is. More times than not in our experience here the movements we’ve joined, other than our own, has actually worked against our interests. We’ve empowered more people, institutions, political parties and corporations by our support at the expense of our own progress than we’ve realized. That has to stop. The truth is that as Afro Americans before and beyond this new movement we are Global Citizens ideologically speaking.
We were at one time like a bird locked in a cage but the gate is open now and the unfettered liberty we need awaits us outside the construct of the cage. Our wings will never become strong enough to soar if we don’t exercise them in an unrestricted environment. Yes we may fail at times and yes there are no guarantees but to stay within the restricted confines of the cage out of fear is to condemn yourself to die there always needing and wanting more but only given enough to remain a useful pet.
Interests Over Party and Personality, ALWAYS!
Walter Mitchell Jr.