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121111_boney_speaksI have observed over the years of my existence here on the Earth and read historical records, the resiliency of black people.  Through slavery to civil rights to the election of the first black President of the United States, we have been through a lot.  The one thing that has kept us strong as a people over all these years and all these circumstances is unity.  While many blacks have not embraced the power of unity, those that have embraced it have been the catalyst behind most of the changes impacting the black race that we have experienced. 

The NAACP was founded to fight social oppression and legal disparities that impacted blacks.  They were met with tons of opposition, but unity held them together.

At the start of the 20th century, black students at universities in the United States were often excluded from associations enjoyed by white students in the form of fraternal organizations.  During the 1905-06 school year, at Cornell, black students organized the first Greek letter fraternity for black students, with the goal of providing an opportunity for association and mutual support among African American students. Most black people know this fraternity as Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity.  Soon after, other black fraternities and sororities were founded and they were bound by one thing...unity.

Unity is the glue that binds people together.  The Bible says, how can two or more walk together unless they agree. 

So, what that tells me is that if we as a people are not walking together and are not in agreement, then we are not unified.

Speaking of the Bible, there was a group of folks in the book of Genesis that came together in agreement to build a tower to heaven (Tower of Babel) and they were so unified and on one accord that God had to confuse their language so they couldn’t understand one another.  In other words, even God knows the power that we have when we are in one accord.

There are many people that claim that they want to see black people come together and succeed, but their actions are more divisive and hurtful to the black race.

Many black people forget that there was a unified struggle that took place to give them the right to say and do the things we so freely enjoy today.  Keep in mind this took place no less than 50 years ago, when the Civil Rights movement was at its peak.

Reverend Jesse Jackson once said, “There are tree-shakers and there are jelly-makers.” 

Minister Robert Muhammad also said, “Tree shakers knock the fruit off the tree so that the Jelly makers can take the fruit and make jelly.  Too often, the Jelly makers forget or refuse to give the Tree shaker a spoonful or a jar of jelly to keep shaking the tree.  Jelly makers mistakenly believe that they are the reason why they are where they are by virtue of their education and working inside the system.”

Point is, black people have endured slavery TOGETHER; endured Jim Crow TOGETHER;  endured segregation TOGETHER; boycotted TOGETHER; marched TOGETHER and experienced economic prosperity TOGETHER.

What has happened to the black community since integration was instituted has been a travesty and has moved us away from a position of unified strength to a position of individual weakness.

Everybody needs somebody and black people need each other, especially during these turbulent and unsure times.  If being black wasn’t relevant and important, then God wouldn’t have created us black.  He has a purpose for black people that can only be accomplished when we come together on one accord.

A soldier is not as strong as the army he is a part of.  An athlete on a team can’t play the game and win by himself. 

Even Jesus himself chose disciples to help Him spread his message across the land. 

Now is the time for us to recognize our strength, humble ourselves and choose to return to our position of strength through unity.

Jeffrey L. Boney is a dynamic, international speaker and a Next Generation Project Fellow. Jeffrey is the Founder and CEO of the Texas Business Alliance and is an experienced entrepreneur and adjunct professor in Houston, Texas. If you would like to request Jeffrey as a speaker, you can reach him at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it . 

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