Better Than Good

by A.B. Wilson Jr.

While growing up in the 1960s and early 1970s. it was made clear to me by my parents that in this White dominated society there are many limitations and obstacles placed on Black people to achieve total success at all levels.

Because of these limitations and obstacles I was encouraged by my parents to work hard and set very high standards. Education was the number one priority for my parents. My parents both were college graduates and very intellectual and they grew up in the segregated south in the 1930s and 1940s. In a so call integrated America of the late 1960s and 1970s Black children and white children were going to school together. After that in many cases Black and White people would be working together or competing for the same jobs and career opportunities. I was encouraged to excel in school. I was told that many White people think they are superior intellectually than Black people. There were very low expectations from White teachers and school administers about Black children pertaining to education. It was made very clear I and all Black children must be prepared to work hard and achieve. At one I was told to be "BETTER THAN GOOD". This was something I kept in mind as a youngster and still to this day as an adult. It is something that I believe all Black people must be aware of at all times. It is still very prevelant today. White people generally feel that Black intellect is limited. The real issue White people fear Black intellectuals because they are a threat to White males control of this society.

My parents and every other parent who encourages their children to be better than good are correct. It shocks White people to see Black person who is well-spoken and knowledgeable on matters like business, politics, finance, literature, the arts, the stock market, and science. The narrow-minded White media focuses on Black people who commit crimes and live in poverty and those who fail. The White media and White people are quick to condemn any Black man or woman who challenges the White power structure in this country. Any time a brother or a sister speak the truth about this country they are considered anti-American.

I have always considered the idea of being better that good very significant for all Black people because the odds of total success is always against us. White people will only give to Black people when it benefits them. The change in the law created limited success. There are many educated Black men and woman who have to work their way up the so called corporate ladder. While and White person can take short cuts to get to the top. It is important that we as Black Americans challenge ourselves to be able to control our own destiny. Being better that good goes to the point of being able to control your own life. The reality is this country is not truly an intergrated society. True intergration to me means that all is equal and all have the same chance to have total control and power. Nothing should be based om color or ethnicity, but in this country it still is. There is still a clear stigma that White people only want to see Black people go so far and so high. That is the reason why this not an intergrated society. True diversity will never be achieved until Black people totally socially and economicly united. High standards in education and economic excellence must always remain a priority in Black America. We have to encourage our brothers and sisters who are poor and criminals to understand being better than good. Black Americans can't afford to be lazy or indifferent. The more we as Black people pride ourselves in achieving all things then the closer we will come to being in total control of our own destiny.

Better Than Good by A.B. Wilson Jr.

© Copyright 2003. All rights reserved. No portion of this work may be duplicated or copied without the expressed written consent of the author.

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