Letters & Opinion

After The Celebration – What?

“Until justice is blind to colour, until education is unaware of race, until opportunity is unconcerned with the colour of men’s skins, emancipation will be a proclamation but not a fact.”Lyndon B. Johnson

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Harris at Large by Edward Harris

It was definitely a great Emancipation Day, 2022. For every person of colour in this region, the 1st of August each year bears great significance. It is the day when our fore-parents must have joyfully shouted FREE AT LAST, FREE AT LAST! Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. re echoed the words but those who were actually freed felt it. Looking back over the years, we can count our blessings and review our progress, but no one can be truly satisfied. There is still a lot to be done, as over the years we see our progress being retarded, and we have to go back to the drawing board and find ways to circumvent any further erosion of our progress. It continues to be a hard road to travel.

I really like this definition of FREEDOM – Liberation from slavery or restraint or from the power of another: Freedom points to INDEPENDENCE. Now that the partying is over, how do we plan to deal with the Independence that we have – this Freedom whereby we are free to make choices and exercise our Independence. What does Emancipation mean to you? What are you doing to execute the programmes that will deliver gains in your life with each passing year?

It is important that we plan to act on our PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT and our FINANCIAL FREEDOM. On this occasion, I will like to deal with the issue of our personal development. There is a shift in the way education is approached these days. There is a revolution taking place with the introduction of the Knowledge Industry which is estimated to reach globally, US$1.1 Trillion by 2026.

Today, there are many HOW TO courses being offered via the internet along with coaches presenting webinars as introduction to their programmes. While a college degree will always be a worthwhile achievement, millions are being made by persons who never visited the entrance of a university. You can purchase courses on most subjects online from companies like Udemy which is a leader in the industry. Many times free courses are offered by companies in the industry from which you can benefit. Do not be scared by feeling everything is at a cost on the internet. There are offerings that will train you to go into business on your own. Others will improve your level of confidence and motivate you to take steps in your life that will create a positive direction.

COVID 19 has caused many to turn their lives around for the better. Many decided to use the time of the pandemic to enrich their family lives, providing more quality time for the family, and self improvement through online courses and reading. As a result, they returned to the traditional work environment more equipped with knowledge that will be of benefit to their corporations and their personal advancement.

The progress that we make at the individual level will tremendously impact the quality of life we apply to the Freedom we enjoy today, in spite of the daily battles to maintain the hard won Freedom. We must begin to bring meaning to words like Emancipation, Freedom, and Independence which must not be mere words but taken seriously and put into action.

I tend to get emotional on occasions like Independence and Emancipation. We must begin to have a real stake in the economies of our nations. How do we implement such programmes? It can be done and in time it will be done when politicians amass enough political will. Everyone knows how it can be done. That is for another contribution. On this occasion, my challenge to my readers whose ancestors were once slaves, is to find real opportunities for emancipating ourselves. Many of us are well advanced in the process of personal development and are ready to take on the responsibility to achieve economic advancement beginning with the Knowledge Industry. It is about time.

The news in recent days relating to the monkeypox virus should be of concern to all. The World Health Organisation and the US Government are putting together the necessary personnel and vaccines to get on top of the situation. In the meantime, citizens everywhere need to exercise caution and keep sanitizing our hands often.

Be strong and stay safe. Blessings!

Edward Harris
Freelance Journalist/Realtor/Business Consultant
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