Commentary

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As teenagers, everyone wants to be the next Lebron, Will Smith or Beyonce. We all want to be successful. But, are teens really willing to do what it takes to be successful?  I believe that many of us want to be at the top, but are not willing to do what it takes to get there.

Everyone has a different meaning of success. Some say it is how much money you make and  how popular you may be.  Others believe success is when you reach a certain goal in life. First Lady Michelle Obama once said that success isn't about how much money you make, but rather about the difference you make in people’s lives.

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Hmmm… I know this headline has probably gotten some people's eyes bucked and their eyebrows raised, but although there are distinct comparisons between the NBA and slavery, there are also undeniable similarities.

Back in the slave days, slaves were sold at an auction. Slaves waited around hoping NOT to get picked.  They stepped on the podium, where the slave owners would inspect them.  They checked for injuries and how good they looked. Slave owners didn’t just want anybody; they wanted the best.  Who could work the hardest?  Who was going to make them the most profit?  In approximately two minutes, the bidding would start…

Just like in the days of slavery, the NBA sends their men to camps, where they showcase their skills to see who the best is.  Team owners don’t just want anybody; they want the best.  At the NBA draft, players wait around hoping to get picked.  Whomever the owners believe is the best player, always gets picked first and then millions of dollars are spent on them.  But before players are chosen, the owner only has two minutes on the clock to pick their player and make their announcement…

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Are we turning to violence to get respect? Many teenagers carry guns and many other weapons because they feel safer against their peers. Why do teenagers feel the need to turn to violence to get their point across and to get even with an enemy?

On June 20th, up and coming rapper Lil Snupe was shot to death. Lil Snupe, whose real name is Addarren Ross, was 18 years old and recently signed to Meek Mill’s record label. Reports say that an argument broke out over a video game and Lil Snupe was shot twice in the chest.

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Supreme

Last week, the Supreme Court’s conservative faction revealed more clearly than ever before its true colors. It showed that in the political war over America’s future, it supports those who want to return to the exclusionary policies and practices of the past.

That this is guiding principle of Chief Justice John Roberts and Associate Justices Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, and Samuel Alito is no surprise. But their contempt for using the law to right injustice and expand the franchise of democracy has never before been so nakedly displayed.

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Nelson Mandela, now 94 years of age, was born in 1918, which was way before my time.  Although I’m a 90s baby, that doesn’t mean that I’m not old enough to know about him.  No matter how old are young you are you should know him. Nelson Mandela is history!

Mandela is a civil rights activist and a world leader.
Mandela was the first black president of South Africa.
Mandela dismantled the legacy of apartheid.
Mandela played a huge role in putting an end to racism, poverty, and inequality, not only in South Africa, but across the nation. 
Mandela is a symbol of global peacemaking.

Mandela was repeatedly arrested for seditious activities, going against the government.  In 1962, he was arrested and convicted of sabotage and conspiracy to overthrow the government, where he was sentenced to life imprisonment.  He served 27 years in prison and shortly after his release, he was elected President in South Africa.

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What do we do when school teachers, organization leaders, church members, and adults around the community disrespect us as youth?

For example, a teacher once called me a “jerk” and a “waste of space.” Was it my responsibility to raise my voice and cause a scene for what he said to me? No!

Many times, a teenager may start an argument out of hate, but what if an adult says something that causes the teenager to lose their temper? Do we as teenagers have the right to put an adult “in their place,” or should we just let the situation go?

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With the deepening polarization of our country, I have been reflecting on the cause of this polarization.

One of the major issues confronting the U.S. is what it means to be an American. This may sound a bit trite, but this is at the heart of a lot of the intractable problems we are facing as a country. Everyone wants to carve out their own identity, with individuality being the motivating force behind the move, not the betterment of America.

There was a time when we were simply all Americans. Then we became Irish-Americans, Jewish-Americans, African-Americans, Homosexual-Americans, Illegal-Americans, etc.

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RosaParksIt is always interesting to reflect on certain events that took place in days gone by, especially when it comes to economic issues.

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Gambling_on_GamblingGambling and gambling-related problems are common among all racial and ethnic groups, but there’s evidence that African Americans are more likely to experience more serious gambling-related troubles than White Americans.

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Child_PovertyWashington is descending into another silly season. Let’s end this diversion of dust and smoke as partisans hype mock “scandals” for political profit.

FALLBROOK CHURCH - CHRISTMAS IN JULY

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