New Year, New Attitude, New Prospective? By Reggie Jenkins Now that 2005 is behind us, well at least for now, it’s time for an attitude adjustment with one another by way of keeping the peace with one another without all this sudden outburst of violence we have been seeing lately. The whole world is going insane yes, but there are some intelligent people perhaps who have some sense about themselves that should at least be able to reason with one another without picking up a gun, knife, running someone over with their vehicles or any uncivilized thing BLACK FOLKS do in order to get their way or maybe think they are getting away with these things. New attitude? A new attitude for those “baby mamas” with all that drama about nothing. If the man won’t do, can’t do, or should have do the things he suppose to do then ladies, LET HIM GO! He is not worth the time or either the headache to put you through all of that. New attitude? A new attitude with our young people respecting each other, themselves, their parents and the
elders around you. Too many of our young people are very disrespectful towards our elderly. How? By using propane language around them or right in their presents. Another thing is they are disrespecting towards females by calling them the “B” word. They are also disrespecting towards themselves by young men allowing their pants to hang down off their bodies. When you dress like that it is not cool but a way to say “I am available” a trait found in the prison system. A good year? Perhaps this can be the start of something for everyone besides; it’s up to YOU to make this a great year and how do you do that? By being true to you and to others; there is no other way to get around it. Once you do that, then whatever you make of 2006 will be a great year for and others. Think about it, the only reason you start off the year wrong is because YOU made it happen! Be good to yourself and to others….. Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. email@example.com
The Pope and the Importance of Family Based on Marriage By Reggie Jenkins Just as Pope John Paul II took the stand on the importantance of Family Based on Marriage, Pope Benedict XVI will follow as well. It is refreshing to know that such a Church Leader like the Pope will take that position as well; taking a stand on something on what most people will take seriously. As you notice now, other church leaders are taking that same stance and stressing it as well in their churches rather if members of that church do like it or not because that’s just the way it is. I agree when Pope Benedict said, “the family has always been the center of attention of venerable predecessors, especially John Paul II.” Family is very important and very much the center-piece of human life itself. Then, there’s the issue of same-sex marriages which has been a sore subject to many Christians everywhere. The pontiff made his point that marriage is between MAN and WOMAN thus, condemning the
whole concept of same-sex unions as anarchic “pseudomatrimony”. As a former Cardinal, Benedict, Joseph Ratzinger spearheaded a Vatican campaign against same-sex unions in 2003 according to a recent report that issues guidelines for Catholic politicians to oppose laws granting legal rights to gay couples when he was perfect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith. Now, some the states are adopting the same laws as the Vatican is making unlawful for same-sex unions. Many non-Catholic churches are adopting this practice as well giving church leaders the responsibility of Family Based on Marriage when they bring unions of men and women. I urge our church leaders to practice this and take a page out of the Pope’s “playbook” of the issue of importance of Family and Marriage of the union of MEN and WOMEN. Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. firstname.lastname@example.org
Crime Fighting Savannah Style By Reggie Jenkins Quick, fire up the Bat Signal! Get that guy in the red and blue suit! It would be cool to have our very own super heroes in cape and cowl or a red and blue suit but in the real world, we really don’t need them. Savannah has its own “crime fighters” and that’s where the Savannah-Chatham County Metropolitan Police Department comes in doing what they do best by way of crime prevention and safety to our citizens here in our fair city. Love them or not, they are here because their concern is the safety of our community and if we want a safe community we need Savannah-Chatham Metro Police. The burden and tremendous responsibility lies with them patrolling the city and making sure our streets are safe for everyone. How can we have safe streets when we have law breakers breaking the law as if there is no care in the world? How can we have safe streets when the laws are not being forced by our lawmakers? How can we have safe streets when there isn’t enough police presents known in our various neighborhoods?
I echo what Van R. Johnson, Vice Chairman, Alderman, and District 1 City Council said in a recent Herald (Jan 4, 2006) Letter to the Editor when pointed out that: “…crime is a people problem.” THE PEOPLE notice the problems in the neighborhood so THE PEOPLE should be a help to our police in reporting crimes they see and not pretend it isn’t their problem because once again, it is THE PEOPLE who are the eyes and ears of our neighborhoods. That is why we have Crime Stoppers so that citizens can report a crime, be rewarded and be anonymous. Let me also answer my fellow columnist Michael Porter’s question, DOES ERASING CRIME MEANS ERASING BLACKS? My answer is no. Erasing the crime by erasing the person who commits the crime and the crime should fit the punishment no matter the color of ones skin. Crime should not be placed with race. Be good to yourself and to others… Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. email@example.com
Playing God: “The Governornator” Shows No Mercy Concerning Justice By Reggie Jenkins First, it was James Tookie Williams now its 75 year-old Clarence Allen who is up for execution Jan 17 and get this, he’s the oldest Death Row inmate. Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger’s answer, NO. He made his point very loud and very clear on crime, punishment and the Death Penalty, NO MERCY for those facing Death Row. Already, Schwartzenegger denied clemency to three previous condemned prisoners since taking office two years ago according to a published report. Of those the three, one was granted a public clemency hearing, another a private clemency hearing and a third was not afforded any hearing. It is the Governor’s intention to NOT have public clemency for Allen perhaps, for anyone else and not even a private one at that. Allen was sentenced to death for hiring a hit man who murdered three people at a Fresno, CA market in 1980 and has been incarcerated for the murder at Folsom State Prison.
How many Death Row inmates will it take to “play God”? It seems like that this budding California Governor and action movie star has no heart like his character “The Terminator”; a heart like steel and uncaring with a hand to rule. James Tookie Smith life should have been saved although he paid for the crimes he has done although, it couldn’t be undone but yet again, Governor Schwartzenegger showed no mercy playing out the hand he dealt making this more of a political give-away and now playing for keeps. If Clarence Allen dies in California, then you may as well call Schwartzenegger not Governor but “Hitler” for the way he treats prisoners on Death Row and not even giving that person a second chance. Justice is not only blind it’s deaf as well. It’s so blind even Stevie Wonder can see it. And it looks like that the “Governornator” is not just “star struck” but politically blind as well. I certainly hope that the Governor and the California Supreme Court will see justice a different light. Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. firstname.lastname@example.org
BLACK HISTORY 2006 From Mother Country To New Land By Reggie Jenkins (Author’s note: this article was first published in The Gospel Truth Newspaper Miami, FL, Feb. 1995) In this life, man shall step into history’s deep, dark, mysterious past transforming it into a light of a new dawn of hope. From the Congo, we called home in a far away land then put on slave ships to set sell to a “New World” upon the seas of Neptune where God exodus his people. It was in this “New Land”, where we worked with our hands to make things grow by breaking open the Earth with its rich blackness under the sun by day to the moon by night. We are not Africans but another kind of people called Negroes born from the dust of our Motherland in a “New Land” but a strange land where we now make our new home. Negroes, that’s what we were to the masters who not gave us hard labor under a whip but lynched our brothers, raped our sisters, and stole our children. They made life for the so-called Negro very much a life of fear for our very lives. Despite the conditions, despite the hard task of our masters tying to break our backs as well as our spirits, we were determined to transform those chains of slavery into a haven of justification and notification that it is endowed by our Creator that we are ALL free.
The process began through the ideas of our people to make way for freedom for ALL Negroes who are still in bondage and struggling to be free in expression to walk down that road to freedom to a haven of brotherhood. The process continues as we as a people struggle from day to day with the problems and strives of today’s economic problems, racial problems, and other problems we face, and yet we still continue to thrive and strive for justice and equality and bring forth a sense of pride as African – Americans in this “New World” we still live in. It is from those who told us our very deep dark mysterious history we shall not forget where we came from ad strive to go where no man has gone before in this vast land of ours. A special thanks to the Gospel Truth Newspaper in Miami, FL for allowing this to be first published and also to the Savannah Herald Newspaper for reprinting this special Black History Article as well. Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. email@example.com
Fixing It: Crime Fighting in Savannah By Reggie Jenkins Once again, we are seeking solutions to the forever increasing crime on our streets and finding ways to “fix” the problem and not band aid over it and say the problem is fixed. That’s were former Charleston Police Chief Reuben Greenberg comes in sharing lessons learned and in hope instilling and implementing ideas to crime-fighting here in Savannah. Maybe with these suggestions given, maybe the mayor, our police chief and other local government officials can come up with ways to increase the crime in our urban areas like 37th Street, East Savannah, West Savannah and Downtown Savannah as well. Chief Greenberg is right, we don’t have to live in fear but some people do coming and going in and around the city. And yes people still lock their car doors as someone (especially if they are Black). And yes, people still lock their homes up to keep unwanted people out of their homes. And yes, people still
look over their shoulders when people do pass them by. These are uneasy times in an uneasy world where things do happen especially in high crime areas as well that we very seldom hear of crime but it happens. And when it happens, after it does happen, the people in the community gather together and say, “Hey, let’s do something about the crime!” After the aftermath it’s now TOO LATE BUT NOT SOON ENOUGH! The dark cloud of crime huddles over Savannah and it seems like there is no silver lining but yet, we have people in Savannah who pray in hopes to turn things around in this city and yes we don’t have to live in fear. We don’t have to have this dark cloud of fear when terror strikes our city; another shooting, another robbery, another homicide. These can slow down if only it starts in our homes first teaching these young people what’s right and what’s wrong and perhaps planting a seed of hope in their lives. Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. firstname.lastname@example.org
I Don’t Get! By Reggie Jenkins It is written in the Scripture that if a man doesn’t work, he doesn’t eat. This is certainly a fact that goes without merit. And so, this why I wonder why so many people won’t get up and go to work but instead of going out and work they get something from the government in substitute of going out and making an honest living. An idle mind is certainly the Devil’s workshop if you don’t apply good work principles without getting a hand-out but getting a hand-up. Today youth need to learn how earn money by the work of their hands instead of asking their parents for every little penny. An HONEST day of work is better than prison time and life lost that could have been spent productively. My mother taught this principle as a youth growing up and still to this day has been with me since and I turned out alright. I don’t get it when healthy people go out sell drugs, commit acts of unforgivable crimes and live with themselves. While these
dishonest people go out and do these crimes while hard working person go out and make an HONEST living with their hands. I remember what the old folks use to say to me a long time ago, “a little hard work won’t kill you but only make you better.” Believe it or not, it does work and it is all true especially how times are now or days. I remember at age 16 I gotten my first job cutting grass at Francis Bartow Homes during the summer. My mom was instrumental in getting the job for me; my first summer job and a chance to make some money during the summer. She instills in me the importance of making your own money the honest way. It is good to encourage your child, parents to get a paper route, walk someone dog, wash cars, or even cut grass any kind of honest work is better than not having one at all. So the message is: GET OFF YOUR BUTTS AND DO SOMETHING WITH YOURSELVES! Be good to yourself and to others. Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. You can email Reggie at: email@example.com Why Little Johnny or Johnny Mae Can’t or Won’t Read?
By Reggie Jenkins I am guardian to 10 children. 8 of them are nieces and nephews, the other two are my godsons. As a guardian to all 10 of these children, I want to see them succeed in whatever they dream but the problem is will they learn? It is the responsibility of the PARENT, THE TEACHER, and THE STUDENT to learn. First the PARENT, it is the PARENT’S responsibility to TEACH that child and the old saying goes, “charity starts at home and spreads abroad”. If you teach that child how to behave themselves and learn how to conduct themselves accordingly then, the teacher don’t have to disciple the child as much. Ones behavior determines how far a person goes in life. Parents also monitor the progress of your child in that class by making sure they do their homework that’s assigned to them daily. Teachers, your primary job is to T-E-A-C-H; TEACH that child by depositing and nurturing what you teach that child in the classroom so that the student will be able to go to the next level of learning. You are NOT to be the babysitter of that child or children in your classroom. YOU are the role model in that classroom so ACT LIKE IT! For you teachers who are doing this job just for the paycheck, then it is time for you to GET OUT OF THE TEACHING BUSINESS! If those teachers who love in spite of the pay but doing it for the love of the student, then please do all you can do to stay in that field; WE NEED GOOD TEACHERS! WE NEED GOOD STRONG MALE ROLE MODELS AS TEAHERS!
Now students, you also responsible for that learning process in and as well as outside the classroom by doing the following things: 1) DOING THE RIGHT THING. The right things are going into that teacher’s classroom and learn and not cut up but learn. Learn all that you can in that classroom because someway in the long run it will follow you. 2) DO HOMEWORK AND CLASS ASSIGNMENTS. It is very important you do this to better your grades and your test scores in t he upcoming year. Homework shows the teacher that you are a responsible person. These are important years in your lives so treasure them and treasure them very well. I am so glad I finished high school and following the advice of my mom, teachers and counselors. Now that this school years is off to a roaring start, I must mention these things and address the question on why little Johnny or Johnny Mae can’t or won’t read is it’s not the system but the people in the system, YOU and the TEACHERS! Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. You can reach Reggie at: kennethreginaldjenkins@yahoo. com Now What?? By Reggie Jenkins
Now that the death of Saddam Hussein is prevalent, I wonder how the president is going to play this hand in a war that no one really wanted. And if he does play the hand to send more troops to Iraq then he’ll be playing that hand he’ll be dealing with. According to the Associated Press, the count since December 2006 has been at least 113 U.S. service members died making the last total continuous count a little over 3000 making it the bloodiest month in 2006. The Sunnis are up in arms about Saddam’s hanging makes wonder what will our government do for an encore to perhaps bring some understanding between the two of them or just simply pull the troops out and let them just go for themselves. It seems like they’re not helping themselves enough to be an independent and free society minus Saddam Hussein. Then after saying all of this, then we must remember that the clones of Saddam Hussein will continue to carry out whatever threats there is to anyone who may stand in their way including our U.S. troops who are there as we speak. President Bush needs to rethink about sending any more troops placing our soldiers in arms way of whatever danger that may lie ahead or come before them at anytime. The solution is to pull troops out NOW! Cut and run? We are not cutting and running by pulling troops out now but keeping the steady climb of fatalities down not escalating like past wars.
God forbid if the numbers keep going up while our young men and women die over there in a war no one really wanted. I may sound like a war hatter but I just wanted some clarity of this war and why the president is willing to send more people there to simply to die. The cost of lives simply isn’t worth the blood spilled from those fighting this war. Never the less, we will continue to see more fatalities as this war just continue to happen while those families brace themselves for to hear the fate of their love ones lies in the balance between life and death. Not since the Vietnam Conflict I haven’t seen such as this even the death a leader of another country who was the end all threat to his own country and ours. The question remains, what have learned from all of this and where in history will it play? For one thing we will know that we had a president that didn’t believe in “cutting and running” even in the heat of battle or when he’s running of ideas to make this really work. All I know is it’s time to send our troops home and let history speak for itself in a war, once again, that no one really wanted. The bottom line is we need let Iraq to do for themselves without any further help from us especially in time of war. If anything else now what? Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Wanted: “Wanna Be Gangsters” Need To Never Apply
By Reggie Jenkins Giving in light of the recent shoots in our city especially the most recent one, it has come to my attention that we have “wanna be gangsters” among our youth. Yes, those notorious, pants hanging down, hair twisted, gun toting, loud rap music listening “wanna be gangster” we see and often hear. Not all our youth are like these as I describe but only the ones listed. It pains me to point them out but if you hang with a bad seed then you end up acting like that person. A family just buried a youth who was part of what could be describe as a set-up mafia style hit straight out of the gangster’s text book and then later put into play. Former Savannah High School basketball standout James Ferguson, 29, along with two other men where in a cross-fire on the 4200 block of Guatemala Street about 9:30 p.m. according to Savannah-Chatham Metropolitan Police Department and the Savannah Morning News ( Jan 4) that ended in result becoming deadly killing Ferguson and wounding another. Ferguson died in result of multiple shots with the others where wounded leaving one in critical condition as last reported. With all of this going on, these “wanna be gangsters” just wanted an excuse to go out and kill somebody, anybody that may get in their way by any means necessary. Here’s according to the Morning News and James Nathan Johnson the shooting came about: a Chevy Blazer pulled up in front of the house, while a black Ford F150 truck
pulled up along side that vehicle, blocking both lanes of the street. Johnson said the occupants of both vehicles then opened fire. This came right out from the “wanna be gangsters” text book and played into real life and on the streets of our city. Another shooting in result of three gunmen looking for drugs at an East 53rd St. home clamming another life and if this keeps up, we’re be hearing more and more of these stories from the media all thanks to the fame of “wanna be gangsters” in our city. What about our police force? What is being done to curb crime and stop the blood shed on our streets? What about our local government? What are they doing to better our streets to make it safer? In the meantime, the family of James Edward Ferguson “Murdock” just buried their son as of this writing and I pray for the sake of “Murdock’s” family the lessons will be taught through his death on protecting our youth from such violence like his. It is NOT fair but as it has been said, life isn’t fair even when you least expected when life can be snatched from you at any moment. It is my hope that “Murdock” lived a good and bountiful life to his fullest. As for you “wanna gangsters”, GET OUT THE GAME WHEN YOU CAN!!! Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. Email: email@example.com Let the REAL Heroes Please Stand Up!
By Reggie Jenkins John Saxon Pierce better known as “Piccolo”, is considered a hero here in Savannah for what he has done in the wake of the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960’s. I wasn’t there when Piccolo marched along side Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr, Coretta Scott King, Ralph Abernathy, Rev. Andrew Young and others but I heard enough of the stories behind the Civil Rights Movement to make history at that time. It was fitting to give flowers to a man who many thought was perhaps a has been, washed up, just not with it and perhaps just another old man living and down on his luck but John Saxon Pierce is a living hero who I am living to see during my lifetime. Just think, Piccolo marched so that we may have the things we now are now enjoying; the luxuries of freedom and justice in our country and in this state and this city. If it wasn’t for Piccolo and others who marched we would be right now sitting on the back of the bus, still being racially discriminated, and still not enjoying those things or luxuries we may not ever have. And so, Piccolo marched because it was the only way to the attention of those who once denied us the right to vote, the right of free speech, the right to equal housing, equal education and equal jobs with equal pay. Again, if it wasn’t for Piccolo and others who marched with him, these things would not be so. Even now in this 21st Century, we see
better opportunies better than the 1960’s. I heard a lot about what has happen to other African-Americans during that time when the dogs where turned on them, being beating, jailed, called the N word turning into a second class citizen. But yet, they marched onward. Piccolo was part of the NAACP in order to be of some help for his people; standing on the wall and committed to not come down! And still he stands on that wall fighting in a small way now but he’s still standing. You may look at John Saxon Pierce now and say he’s just an old man behind his time but deep inside I still think he’s going being standing until the Lord calls him home. Forget those “artificial” wanna be heroes who forget where the came from I rather have John Saxon Pierce as my 20th Century hero because he was there so I can taste the freedoms I and my wife enjoy. Well, that’s who I would have as my hero so please, give the man the respect due because surely he came a long, long, long ways baby! Right on Piccolo! Right on Brother! Reggie Jenkins is a poet, playwright and freelance writer. firstname.lastname@example.org
Articles written by Reggie Jenkins