“Now more than ever.”  

Four simple words that make up a philosophy that we as black people need to make our battle cry. What do I mean and why? Well, it’s pretty simple. As a group of people, we are at a precipice when it comes to so many things in this country and in this city. For example: economics. We have huge areas of this city filled with black people who do have money to spend and yet we are not capitalizing on our financial wherewithal to own and have the things that money can buy. We don’t have strong black banks. We are not pursuing the ownership of stores; especially grocery stores. In Austin, a community with nearly 100,000 residents, we can count the number of grocery stores we have on one hand. Why is that?  

We have a “now more than ever” need for grocery stores. So where are the entrepreneurs who have the business acumen to open a store? We cannot survive as a people or a community if the basic foundation for survival (food) isn’t available.

We also have a “now more than ever” need for education. In an era where the entire world has been made smaller because of the internet, our community needs to understand technology more than ever. To be able to understand it, we need education. Yet, making education a priority is not necessarily happening. Every day, the news is filled with stories about school districts denying money to some schools, while rewarding other schools with money. 

Education has become a way for adults to earn money. What’s worse, there isn’t any accountability for when the educational process goes astray.  As a people and as a community, we need to focus our attention on making sure our young and old are all educated. 

We need to have a “now more than ever” mindset on employment. Whatever the current unemployment rate is for the entire country, I know that in Austin the number is astronomical.  We need to be doing everything at all times to create jobs that can get our young people off the corners and into a routine of work.  

The recent new story about Sandra Bland and many others who have encounters with the police that leads to their deaths is a call for a “now more than ever” movement against police misconduct. Each of us can do our part to play a role in changing policies that allow the police to mistreat us and others.

Each of us need to have a personal urgency of “now more than ever” when it comes to ourselves. There is so much talent in people that doesn’t show or get recognized. What is your personal “now more than ever” urgency? What is preventing you from achieving goals and accomplishments?   

For me, I spent three years writing one book and in the coming weeks I will tell more about it. I took on the need to write it and even more the urgency to finish it. It was a personal commitment to me that I lived up to and met; fulfilling my promise to myself was rewarding.

What is your own “now more than ever” urgency and what are you doing to achieve it?

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