“A MIND IS A TERRIBLE THING TO WASTE”
Now, I’m not one to give anyone advice when it comes to grammar. You will notice, in this blog and other previous entries that I struggle with my grammar and punctuation just as much as the next. The one thing that really “grinds my gears” is improper grammar and punctuation on purpose! I can’t stand to see people “act” dumb and ignorant on purpose.
I noticed it in high school. Everyone was doing it, even the smart kids. For some reason, it has been a trend in the black community to duplicate ignorance. The smart people are not “in.” Unfortunately, a trend that has proven to be hazardous, as predominately black schools across America have an overwhelming number of students performing extremely low on standardized test. You can blame the teachers; you can blame the parents and the environment all you want. In the end, it comes down to the student. The student has to be the one to take their education seriously. Even if it meant that, you couldn’t blend in with the “in” crowd. While they cut school and practiced truant behavior, you actually had to stay and learn.
Aside from that I see another problem. “We” have been practicing ignorance so long that it’s a force of habit. To the point, that most predominately black establishments lack professionalism. The employees and managers have a hard time separating “street” behavior from “work” behavior. You would think that “work hard” and “play hard” wouldn’t be so easily confused. That when it came to handling business solutions in a work environment, some of our people would get the hint that this isn’t time to play. You have work to do and no one said this would be easy, *shrugs shoulders*. Moving right along…
I personally believe that it starts at home. Treat yourself like a child; tell yourself what you need to do to get yourself together. Success comes with practice. If you want to learn how to hold a business meeting and be able to convert over into a professional dialog and sound accordingly; then you must do this in repetition. I have come to the realization that the words I use when I’m texting and emailing have somehow switched over into my everyday language. Now, I am not saying that I am at work talking to my supervisor like “yea, what up”, “oh ight”… “nah, you good”… but I have started using the vernacular so much that it slips out from time to time. I know, terrible!
Now, it is ok to talk amongst your friends in this manner. It is a problem when your “street talk” spills over into your professional vernacular. After your adolescent stage is over, the thug look and all the mannerisms that come with it, just look like what it is… a loser who doesn’t know how to communicate to different people in different environments. So many of “us” confuse “work talk” or proper language with having to do with race. To sound professional has nothing to do with “talking white” or “acting white”… That’s actually disrespectful to your own people. That is saying; in order to sound intelligent, you must speak like a white man. It has nothing to do with that but everything to do with survival. You are not changing the way you talk to kiss anyone’s a**, just simply separating who you are outside of the work place from who you are when you walk through that door. The last thing you want your supervisor to think is you are that “cool dude from around the way.” Try that and see how far you’ll make it up that corporate ladder.
Oh yea, Blacks can make money behind a desk too. Music and sports isn’t the only means that will help you get to “balling” status. Wise up! Grow Up! Black Men need to Stand up!!!!!!!!!!