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food stampsWho you are is not your pictures, not how pretty or handsome or sexy you claim to be, not your job, not how far you went in school, not how much money you have or don’t have, not where you live, not what clothes you got, not  whether or not you own a car or what kind- who you are is the person that remains when all those things are stripped away. I am not saying that having pride in your appearance, accomplishments, or being able to afford something nice is a bad thing, but it seems like today those things have become the measure of everything.

Even the poorest of us live better than most in many nations of the earth. We know nothing of going hungry or without clean water or clothes or toilet paper or toothpaste or living in a refugee camp with thousands of others surviving on a scoop of rice or oatmeal every day or every other day or every other week. Here where we live, the poorest of us are wealthy because help is never far away. So ask yourself, if a tragedy took away all the comforts that make you so sexy, fly, and cool, who would you really be?

There was a time where us black folk used to know that answer because our parents and grandparents made sure we kept it real. Now we are so addicted to whatever the government hands us that we think we doing something and think we got our own when in reality we are the ones owned and enslaved by Section 8, and WIC, and Food Stamps. It has become our new slavery and social services has become our new overseers as we tell them all our business to keep getting a check. And as soon as our kids get old enough, we send them to apply for the same thing instead of insisting they apply themselves to be FREE.

I remember when I got old enough to get a job in the hood and they wanted all my information in order for us to stay in the projects. My mama got mad when I said hell no. I had a choice to either stay in the system or get the hell out. I found a room mate and I got out. Totally out. We need to stop living the illusion of freedom. You don’t have your own until it’s yours totally paid for by your own hands. That is why I don’t look at somebody to see who they are. The only thing I look to see is, are your truly free? And if not, are you honestly trying to get there? Or are you just living large in the new slavery? -Neo Blaqness