(Readers: Please note the blog is constructed as a story. While not all chapters are linked, after reading a few recent entries, you might want to start at the beginning. More about the blog and about the author. )

Initial episode for this section begins #67 “Why Do Blacks Remain at the Bottom of the Economic Ladder?” Scene: Scene: Jordan and JC continue the conversation in the coffee shop after a short break.

Jordan: “Now that you’ve had a while to let the ideas soak in, any comments, questions?”
010414_1635_16TeachingS1.jpg JC: “Yes. I want you to help me synthesize what you’re saying. Our conversation has covered lots of ground and some major topics. So, what’s the underlying theme?”
Jordan: “You want it in one word? One word that I think the black community needs to work toward?”
JC: “One word would really help. The topic is so broad with so many variables, it’s hard to understand.”
Jordan: “With one word, I think we are on to something. “
JC: “And the one word is?”
Jordan: “When I say Aretha Franklin, what comes to mind?”
Aretha-aretha-franklin-27121751-1280-1024 JC: “R-E-S-P-E-C-T.”
Jordan: “You don’t sing as well as Aretha but you are spot on with the word…respect.”
JC: “That’s interesting. Why did you select the word respect?”
Jordan: “Because my assessment is many in the black community do not respect themselves, let alone respect others.”
JC: “Jordan, that’s very harsh criticism. You really mean that?”
Jordan: “What tipped my view were the riots in Ferguson, MO.”
JC: “You know the police shot an unarmed teenager…shot him six times no less.”
Jordan: “The police went way overboard with the kid and dealing with many of the protestors. I’m not disputing that.”
JC: “Then what is your point? “
Jordan: “Two points really. One we talked about earlier. Anyone who loots and burns someone else’s property gets no respect in my book. Worse still the rioters looted property in their own neighborhood, including a McDonald’s. It’s like burning your own house.”
McDonalds Logo JC: “What did Mickey D do to deserve that?”
Jordan: “Nothing. And how many neighborhood kids worked there…used to work there? If I were McDonald’s I might reopen the store.”
JC: “What’s your second point?”
Jordan: “You have a town that is what about 75% black but the city council, mayor and most of the police force are white.”
JC: “The imbalance is part of the problem.”
Jordan: “I agree it is part of the problem. But what is the cause?”
JC: “Whadda mean, what’s the cause?”
Jordan: “Blacks have an overwhelming majority of the population and yet can’t elect a majority of city council or elect a black mayor? The math doesn’t add up.”
JC: “What do you think the reason is?”
Jordan: “A key reason is blacks don’t get out to vote. In an article in the New York Times, only about 12% of blacks voted in the most recent primary election. Guess what folks. If you don’t vote, your candidate might not get elected.”
JC: “Point well taken. You can’t complain about the election results if you don’t vote.”
Jordan: “And I think…no empirical studies to support…a primary reason blacks don’t vote is they do not respect themselves, or the system.”
JC: “Have you been taking nasty pills, lately? You’re being brutal.”
Jordan: “Think about the points I’m trying to make. Simply put, if one wants to start making change and start having people show you respect, then that person needs to respect himself or herself first.”
JC: “R-E-S-P-E-C-T is a simple theme but seems like a great place to start the rebranding effort.”
Jordan: “Easy to understand the idea. Hard to execute. Now, show me some respect, please, I need a short break.”
JC: “Make sure you wash your hands”