Is Black America’s Leadership Divided?
1 year ago
Some African-Americans aren't seeing the value in the "great black leader" anymore.
Sojourner Truth, Harriet Tubman, Nat Turner, Dred Scott, John Brown, Fredrick Douglass, Marcus Garvey, Medgar Evers, Thurgood Marshall, Malcolm X and Martin Luther King Jr. are just a few of the names of powerful black leaders that have been forever etched in America’s history. Through their leadership wars ended, slaves were freed, civil rights was born, integration became reality and freedom was not only possible, it was required. Since 1619 the African American community has always prided itself on its leaders. Leaders within the black church and organizations like the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and NAACP have all played a part in not only the rights of the African-American community, but also the worlds.
However, in recent years many have complained that black leadership is no more due to the changing times. With an African-American first family, black students graduating from high school and college at increasingly high rates and more opportunities than ever before, the need for a modern day Martin or Malcolm is questionable to some.
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“It's not so much that black leadership is dead, as that our standard notion of it is no longer useful,” activist Kevin Powell wrote in an article for the Washington Post regarding black leadership in America. “It may look as though Black America has fallen into a terrible rut around our leadership today, but that’s in part because a faulty image -- that of the singularly powerful national black leader -- has been perpetuated out of the upheavals of the Civil Rights Movement. Yet Dr. King was never the lone leader of Black America in his day. There was Fannie Lou Hamer, Dorothy Height, Malcolm X, Ella Baker and a wide range of women and men of various ages and backgrounds.”