Chance the Rapper & Michael Bennett Give Lessons on Being ‘Purposed by’ in Hometown America – #HomtownChat

Hot Shot (Old-School): “Real Talk with Industry Players and Biz Leaders”
Ms. Cathy Hughes, Broadcast Media Pioneer

Hot Shot (New-School): “Real Talk with Industry Players and Biz Leaders”
Cam Newton, NFL Pro Bowl Quarterback

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#HometownChat – “Smart Community, Special Service, Civic Dreams”

March Madness in college basketball is set to jump off. It’s where teams are turned into game-time brackets. Some fans have hype and props for their favorite player. Then there’s much props for Chance the Rapper and NFL’s Michael Bennett for giving lessons on being ‘purposed by’ in hometown America.

Chance made news for donating one million dollars to the Chicago Public Schools. He even came up with his selection list of 10 schools that will receive $10,000 each. This decision helped inspire Bennett to layout some dollars for scholars as well. Bennett even supported recent Women’s Day events.

It seems there’s a new class of activist athletes & artists not afraid to speak their minds or put money where their heart is. They understand the importance as public figures of being able to deliver showbiz fun and reflection, on and off the big stage. They spread shine beyond what they do in primetime.

They’re using social appeal to influence the steps hometowns might take to up-shot their game. There were many others from the old days or those from today’s phase who’re serious about seeing a new round of social change whether in urban areas or the heartland. The key is recognizing that when:

  1. Freedoms feel limited, being woke should be unlimited.
  2. Resource are put in freeze-mode, vision should be put in airplane-mode.
  3. Opportunity gets taken for a ride, imagination should breakout a new stride.
  4. Progress wants to take a backseat, projects should take a front seat.

Some wonder whether with new efforts to undo and undermine certain social gains if there’s a new villain in town. Typically in movies the villain is the character whose motives seem to have bad intentions. It’s as if the role the villain plays brings a feeling like there’s someone or something out there to get you.

As Chance and Bennett know there’s a difference between PR – purposeful reality and VR – villain reality. One operates from some core ideals the other usually operates strangely. One is where government or the system wants to serve you. The other is where it feels like they’re trying to swerve you.

Even when freedoms seem like they’re becoming more limited being woke should become more unlimited. This might make sense when flying high in the sky. During pre-flight preps the flight attendant reminds passengers to switch device mode. So calls and data services of email, etc will be unavailable.

That doesn’t mean the smart phone becomes useless. There’re other functions that can be performed or apps used that don’t depend on data service. So for communities that might feel the pinch and pressure of VR with resources put in freeze-mode, it’s a smart time to put vision in airplane mode for a better PR.

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The example by Chance and Bennett is so important. They’ve challenged their peers to offer proceeds, resources or other incentives for spurring next-level communities. It’s kinda like giving folks a shot at being down with OPP – opportunity, purpose and having a plan. That’s core for being in Community 3.0.

There’ve been times in our history, when opportunity got taken for a ride but imagination did breakout a new stride. Sometimes that stride was with new inventions becoming so commonplace we take them for granted now. Other times that new stride was in neighborhoods and meeting places of social justice.

There was a time when agricultural farms were the thing that moved the economy and community. Then we saw a shift to industry with the rise of machines and a focus on efficiency. The tech push came next where information value is premium. Now things have been moving towards ‘work & woke education.’

What’s the difference between today’s social issues and past social effects? What can we learn from those old-school game changers and apply with today’s modern day social up-lifters? It’s what you find when folks read the shifting social tides, in going from ordinary citizens to extraordinary community.

When progress wants to take a backseat or move in reverse, it’s the right projects that take a front-seat for moving things forward. It’s in everyday folks choosing to step out on faith and attract the right people, resources & strategies towards a breakthrough. Community 3.0 can be that right project at the right time.

Each time Chance releases a new album it’s seen as ‘produced by.’ There could well be a few collaborations with other artists. Community 3.0 efforts represent the type of projects that might be seen as ‘purposed by.’ This means doing things fresh and releasing new ‘social tracks’ in a U + Me kind of way.

Chance & Bennett help us see what happens as folks break out a new stride. This means streets of hope rise like high tide. Plus those ready to spread some shine will lead within a more purposeful reality. Together they’ll spark a different kind of ‘march madness’ for a different kind of social steppers groove.

Groove-tracks: John Legend – Shine – https://youtu.be/hzQHnRPY3Zc

R. Kelly – Step in the Name of Love – https://youtu.be/nj71KbE6ekg

Alicia Keys & Rihanna as Artists Known for their Hot Tracks and Humanitarian Hearts – #HometownChat

Hot Shot (Old-School): “Real Talk with Industry Players and Biz Leaders”
Rev. Al Sharpton, Civil Rights Drum Major

Hot Shot (New-School): “Real Talk with Industry Players and Biz Leaders”
Rihanna, Global Music Artist

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#HometownChat – “Smart Community, Special Service, Civic Dreams”

This year’s Oscars had major confusion as to which movie won for Best Picture. With the awards season in full effect other artists are looking forward to their own time in the spotlight. It’s great to celebrate chart toppers and emulate performers like Alicia and Rihanna known for their hot tracks & humanitarian hearts.

But the Oscars also had a down home moment when folks from a city tour bus were invited inside the hall. The ‘star’ of this surprise part of the program was ‘Gary from Chicago’ who was busy taking pictures with Hollywood celebs. The mix of folks from the bus was a good reminder of America’s rich diversity.

From our history to the outlines of the American flag we see what can happen when stars and stripes come together. In a sense it was stars and stripes that came together in that Oscars moment.  Alicia might see it as the workings of a blended family while for Rihanna it’s shining bright like a diamond.

As artists they’re walking in shoes of past icons, including Nina Simone and Mahalia Jackson. Simone sang about being young gifted and black. That was a kind of anthem during times of unrest and upset. Jackson was there in the trenches using her voice to lift spirits and move the needle on social activism.

Alicia & Rihanna know social impact is more than just working that body but also having a body of work. It’s more than just a singing voice but also a social voice for greater good by seasoned citizens and an engaged next generation. Having stars & stripes come together in Community 3.0 (call it C30) means:

  1. Giving no more reasons that leave ‘small change’ on the sidelines.
  2. Bringing lots more ‘We the People’ potential to the frontlines.
  3. Having a more ‘turnt-up’ mindset in hometowns over time.
  4. Moving a ‘C30’ vision into something primetime.

Most people can think of a time of walking over ‘small change’ in the street. It might have been a nickel or a dime. For someone who’s well-off, small change will have lower value than for someone less-off. For a less-off person, small change can be the difference maker in buying a bottle of water to quench thirsts.

There’re ways to have small change in smart community make a big difference. It might be small change when we plug our smart phones into the outlet. The power increases in small percent jumps. But before you know it apps get updated. Before you know it the phone is fully charged and ready for smart use.

When officials offer the same old same old to the community, then ‘We the People’ have to get plugged-into some new ways. We learn this from early human history in two kinds of social uplift situations. There was one where the powers-that-be was told ‘Let the People Go’ and the other told ‘#LetThePeopleKnow.’

If Moses and Pharaoh or Joseph and the King don’t ring a bell then at least modern civil rights history should. What they have in common is how folks stepped-up their true calling and hometown game. They brought more ‘We the People’ potential to the frontlines in every little step they took and move they made.

Recently, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg made news saying people don’t fully appreciate what makes America great. It’s not simply in the cars we drive, homes we live in or towering skyscrapers we build. It’s in the down home ways we function as a melting pot of diverse ideas and breakout talents.

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When diamond is mined there’s a breakout process before it has market value. It’s all about how the diamond in the rough gets ‘turnt-up’ into diamond in the bling. Having a more ‘turnt-up’ mindset in community is in a ‘stars & stripes’ diversity that empowers consumers and citizens for more street value.

This will make us better by doing things to move a C30 vision into primetime. Remember when AOL first came on the scene. It was like an add-on feature with a new computer. It wasn’t there to compete with the computer but to connect the user (through the computer) to a broader space called the World Wide Web.

AOL partnered with computer makers to give more options to the consumer. The same could happen if C30 were to partner with urban radio to connect ‘block talk’ with the world of streets and beats. The same is true if C30 produced civic dream features connecting hometowns with ‘destiny’s dots’ in the community.

During the Montgomery Bus Boycott the powers-that-be weren’t ready to respond to ‘Let the People Go.’ So those in the movement also went with the ‘Let the People Know’ strategy. Along the way folks were told by movement leaders that there comes a time when time itself is ready to make a change.

In the days ahead if there’s ongoing confusion about civic affairs it might be baffling when certain officials remain hardened to their positions. But there’s sure to come a time when even time’s ready to make a change. Even in having to ‘Let the People Know,’ there came a time when ‘I Have a Dream’ took shape.

So to move C30 into primetime as in days gone by, there’re times to work with key decision makers and times to affect other powers-that-be. There’re times things might be well said but not well meant. There’re times to fight the power and times for plugging-in the power to be ‘turnt-up’ as young, gifted & stacked.

Groove-tracks: Snap – The Power – https://youtu.be/j1BNcSBApOU

Common & Lalah Hathaway – Young Gifted & Black – https://youtu.be/pPfgjNjLZ9I

How Denzel Washington & George Clooney Represent Woke Star Power from Ordinary Citizens to Extraordinary Community – #HometownChat

Hot Shot – “Real Talk with Industry Players & Biz Leaders”

Doc Wynter – iHeartRadio Urban SVP

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#HometownChat – “Smart Community, Special Service, Civic Dreams”

C-SPAN’s Prez rankings are in and Barack Obama lands in 12th spot. On basketball’s all-star list he’d be first team in his first year eligible. Then there’s the Hollywood A-list with Denzel Washington and George Clooney showing us how to represent woke star power from ordinary citizens to extraordinary community.

Obama has been out of the spotlight enjoying his post-presidency, but Washington & Clooney have been front and center. They share stories of humble beginnings and social activism. Washington was recently honored with the Hollywood Legacy Award in Black film while Clooney’s getting ready to be a new dad.

They’re good role models for We the People being more than ordinary. That’s because even though they had struggles in school they figured out how to connect with their personal power and how to work with or affect the powers-that-be. There was a certain kind of voice and vision they managed with precision.

So a good start is to #LetThePeopleKnow from Coretta Scott King’s memoirs, advice she got from her mother as a child. She’d say “if you get an education and try to be somebody you won’t have to depend on anyone.” Her mother knew everybody wants to be somebody and in the community that means:

  1. Learning from those who’re beekeepers in the marketplace.
  2. Sizing-up those who’re gate-keepers in the establishment.
  3. Working with those who’re late-bloomers in the family.
  4. Celebrating with those who’re movers & shakers in the industry.

Education is a good thing in a formal way through schooling or an informal way by being self-taught. That’s something most breakout stars might say. Imagine how a beekeeper’s main thing is the skills for working buzz into honey and honey into money. It could get out of hand fast without the right knowledge.

The secret sauce is the process and not the plague. A swarm of bees can easily turn into a bad situation. So Washington might advise ordinary citizens to turn local buzz into honey and not a plague of more problems. It’s why Community 3.0 brings a process that gives folks ways to ‘run run run’ for their money.

In past days there’s been news of having to open the flood gates of a dam in California. This was a threat to towns in low-lying areas. It’s what we’re also seeing in the current political climate. Protest rallies across the country are concerned about a flood-gate of executive actions on social/environmental issues.

The threat is even bigger when it affects those of lower socio-economic status. Dr. King reminded us of how we handle this challenge when he addressed students at a New Jersey school in 1957. He said “Privileged classes do not give up their privilege without a struggle. It will continue until justice is a reality.”

At times history feels like we’re going in circles. This is true when a dog tries to bite its tail, going around and around thinking that will fix things. Whether with personal power or system power, it’s better if Mission Ready Blocks (MRBs) are wagging the tail of progress than fringe ‘tail groups’ running the dog.

A farmer sees how bees are important to the eco-system. They do their part to bring trees the pollen they need to succeed. No one really gets hung-up on whether bees or trees are late-bloomers. We’re just happy that they get to strut their stuff and deliver the goods in the beautiful fruits and flowers they bear.

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Clooney might relate as a first-time dad at age 55. It’s also why in Community 3.0 ‘bees and trees’ do their part, while newbies and late bloomers deliver the goods in the ‘burbs or the ‘hoods. That’s a case of social engagement working together with young or old, ebony or ivory, side by side in smart community.

Washington gives us reason why not everybody is just out for themselves. When we see Hollywood A-listers or other industry leaders getting their party on there’s more than meets the eye. He shares tips with young actors coming behind him on how he found his personal power and how he has since made it big.

He had to dream beyond his immediate circumstances and study as much about his craft in order to have industry impact. It’s what athletes (drafted or undrafted), actors or community players do. It’s what he’s done in major feature films towards having showbiz power and esteem among peers and fans.

Meanwhile, Clooney and his wife as industry players are working for the benefit of many. They do things to put people and community on a roll. They turn buzz into something beautiful by not having things just go around in circles. This makes for some better quality honey, community and ‘woke-place’ harmony.

So “ain’t no stopping those who’re on the move” in industry or community. Washington & Clooney know with some powers-that-be we need not be too fooled by ‘white fright.’ But to check for ‘system short-sight’ that might cause communities to get lost in the shuffle of resources, recognition and popular rankings.

Groove-tracks: McFadden & Whitehead – Ain’t No Stopping Us Now – https://youtu.be/VgYczUH-QWQ

Damian Marley – Everybody Wants to Be Somebody – https://youtu.be/ONQnat0wWC0

Bernice King & Elizabeth Warren on How We Persisted Then and Can Do it Again – #HometownChat

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#HometownChat – “Smart Community, Special Service, Civic Dreams”

“Sistas how ya feel? Brothers you alright?” These words from a popular song are good for lyrics and civics for what can be achieved in the next phase of social engagement. It’s a lead-in to the kind of intro that Bernice King or Senator Elizabeth Warren might use on how we persisted then and can do it again.

King and Warren recently began setting our sights and setting the stage for new rounds in dignity, excellence and justice. They know two key things for going where we’ve not been before. It takes a destination and a map. Without a map we’re just winging it. Without a destination we’re just blowing it.

It’s a message Dr. King and President John F Kennedy wanted us to know in the short letter dug-up in ‘lost & found’ and recently posted on social media for the world to see. In a speech King gave in 1967 to Philadelphia students he asked them to consider having a blueprint that would be useful for being fruitful.

A blueprint is just as important for Community 3.0. Think about what a microwave has done for meal preparation. It’s improved how we thaw, heat and serve food. So King and Kennedy might #LetThePeopleKnow Community 3.0 has a blueprint to thaw tensions, heat dreams and serve smarts in:

  1. What we do to encourage ourselves during those vexing times.
  2. How we empower blocks & beats in the community.
  3. When we explain the in-and-outs of politics of the day.
  4. Ways we entertain people’s fun-side for more good times.

Since a recent online post, Bernice has been giving reminders for handling those vexing times. Just imagine the things she saw growing up as a child in the King household. With all that was happening around them and even happened to them they kept their eyes on the prize and hands on the wheel.

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The steps taken then might apply today. They focused on fighting the good fight, representing the race (plus shaking-up the place) by keeping the faith. That’s the formula used to overcome throughout our history. It’s how slavery chains got lifted, Jim Crow clouds cleared & homegrown conspiracies shutdown.

One of the ways a community might do this is in how we empower blocks and beats using a blueprint. Among the highest rated episodes from Oprah’s daytime show was when she gave away a car to each member of the audience. It was up there with the most talked about and uplifting pop culture moments.

The buzz was ‘you get a car, you get a car, er’body gets a car!’ That might work just as well in Community 3.0 if instead of a car it’s letting blocks get a ‘P.E.N. & C.L.U.E. Blueprint’ as People Engage Notes in a Community Letter Uplifting Everyone. It’s like a social postcard and stamp for getting from here to there.

This way for block after block it’s more like ’you get CLUE, you get a CLUE, er’body gets a CLUE!’ It would help do what Dr. King told us in his speeches, moving towards achieving more hometown respect and personal satisfaction. It might also be a CLUE in explaining the ins-and-out of politics of the day.

At times it’s hard to know if we’re being ‘played’ by some in government. We get ‘talked to’ but not ‘talked with.’ It’s not even clear when we’re ‘talked with’ if we’re actually being ‘talked over.’ The political machine seems more focused on voters who’re core nationalists, unsure working class and pure party loyalists.

Where some fall short Community 3.0 stands tall. As in the past it’s how community players and recording artists become a voice track of our days and groove track of our lives. We can let things become ‘played’ like a broken record or press the social impact ‘microwave buttons’ of change, progress and greatness.

This might also mean new ways to entertain people’s fun-side for more good times. How we entertain today in Community 3.0 was seen with recent Grammy performances. So as Mission Ready Blocks (MRBs) we gotta let purpose move hearts. With Mission Rockin’ Beats we gotta let the groove move feet.

That’s what happened back in the day when we tuned-in to watch Soul Train hosted by Don Cornelius. It was a time to rest, reflect and rejuvenate with some R&B. The dance moves were kinda like a bonus feature. Cornelius would end each broadcast saying ‘until next time, wishing you love, peace and soul.’

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We learn from and are inspired by our cultural icons of old and those we now hold. Warren as a champion for consumer protections walks in the shoes of John F Kennedy. While Bernice walks in the shoes of Martin Luther King Jr. as a champion for her mother’s voice, father’s vision and parent’s legacy.

In Martin & Coretta we have closing thoughts on giving the people what they want and serving them what they need. She once said “Women, if the soul of the nation is to be saved you must become its soul.” He said “If you can’t fly, run. If you can’t run, walk. If you can’t walk, crawl but by all means keep moving.”

Groove-tracks: Soul II Soul – Keep on Movin’ – https://youtu.be/1iQl46-zIcM

John Legend – Get Lifted – https://youtu.be/MSpPpLDYZeQ

Ava DuVernay & Lin-Manuel Miranda Speak on Winning a Game but not Losing Our Civil Liberties – #HometownChat

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#HometownChat – “Smart Community, Special Service, Civic Dreams”

“Hey Martellus Bennett, Patriots just won the Superbowl, what are you doing next?” That question might remind us of those past ads for Disney. Bennett’s not planning to do the usual stuff. He’d probably love to hear Ava DuVernay or Lin-Manuel Miranda speak on winning a game but not losing our civil liberties.

While Monday morning quarterbacks broke down the game, other folks were happy seeing the Obama’s back in town. During their two-week vacation there was even a sighting of BO’s look-alike ‘cool Barry’ with his cap turned backward. They returned just in time to settle into Washington’s business as ‘Reality TV.’

What we’re seeing these days is just a new look of some old ways. That’s what a doctor might say when examining a patient or a historian might say when examining the political, social and economic system. We’ve gone from slavery to Jim Crow to an emerging system condition that could be called John Crow.

It’s called John Crow because of a certain far-away bird that takes advantage of the death, misery and ‘lost way’ of animals. This system has a new set of ‘isms’ (along with WMDs – Weapons of Mass Dah) to benefit from death, misery and lower socio-economic status. So to #LetThePeopleKnow when it’s a John Crow is to:

  1. Check the system for signs of ‘Vulture-ism.’
  2. Churn (agitate) the establishment for the acts of ‘sham-ism.’
  3. Challenge the laws against rounds of social schism.
  4. Cheer the people to avoid the pitfalls of fake realism.

Executive Orders recently issued by the Republican Administration appear to have a negative impact on the everyday citizen. Vulture-ism is seen when perks for Wall Street dig potholes on the roads for Main Street. It’s when concerns for poverty and income inequality are stunted by policies of ‘purge & reward.’ We’ve got to save our streets from being attacked by a ‘republic of vultures.’ (Is it just coincidence that Trump’s middle name is John?)

Even the idea of possibly taking Iraq’s oil to pay for U.S. troop deployment in the Middle East is like a John Crow beast preying on the least. The thing to watchout for is whether the shifting administration policies are really about ‘Make America Great Again’ or adding more power and prime rib to their plate.

These efforts to undermine & override are not being overlooked by ‘people in the know.’ Maybe that’s why Nancy Pelosi made the statement that Trump Advisor Steve Bannon is a shot-caller for white supremacy. Howard Stern saying he feels Trump ran for president to get more money for hosting The Apprentice.

By putting those two thoughts out there some political observers have concluded that we’ve got to callout the administration for the acts of sham-ism. A ‘sham’ is a thing that is not what it’s advertised to be. There’s reason the establishment has more explaining to do on their proposed policies and procedures.

In his letter written while in a Birmingham jail Dr. King outlined the issues of his time. He challenged those who questioned his non-violent protests against laws that protected Jim Crow but oppressed, suppressed or distressed John & Jane Doe. King was saying ‘Yo, that’s some social schism.’

Fast-forward to John Crow today with policies that threaten 1st Amendment rights to a free press and religion but protect 2nd Amendment rights to bear arms. The administration wants weak vetting on cabinet picks but extreme vetting on immigrant visas. We find them shutting down Obamacare signups while saying a replacement won’t be ready until 2018. Does that mean they’d rather have people die, denying them insurance while delaying them any chance for a supposedly better plan? Yo, that’s some social schism right there.

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So DuVernay and Miranda are doing their part to rally the people against losing touch with realism. She recently quoted James Baldwin who said A civilization isn’t destroyed by wicked people. It is not necessary that people be wicked. Only that they be spineless. Another philosopher once said Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. (Is there a ‘true dat’ or amen?)

These notes are reminders to take off any ‘blinders’ that cause citizens to be tone-deaf, street dumb or side-eye blind. They might even suggest it’s a time to have ‘antennas up’ to get the reception and record straight. Smart community understands the past in order to better relate it to what just happened last.

When an Ohio minister says a ‘Chicago gang wants to work with Trump’ it makes people say, really? Then 24 hours later he walks it back, saying he miss-spoke as he was still tired from the recent campaign. He’s not the first minister with the campaign ‘trying to keep it real’ but showing straight-up fake realism.

The job of media, Congressional leaders, constitutional experts and engaged citizens is to keep the ducks in order. Some have committed to doing their part to fight the power as well as ‘floss Trump’s tweets’ (and the rest of his team) because the words in-and-out of their mouths can affect America’s future well-being.

‘Alternative facts’ is the new WMD in the John Crow system used as a cover for miss-information. We’ve been here before in Jim Crow times. So as we rise, let’s not be weary but stay true to realism. We’ll know if what we’re seeing will lead us to a place of more ‘still waters’ or towards a storm of some rough waters.

Groove-tracks: Isley Brothers – Fight the Power – https://youtu.be/KdJ0uv6oMRU

Solange – Rise/Weary – https://youtu.be/mKwxz23H5UY

Kyrie Irving & Susan Rice Show Why We Need Civic Engagement in a Fractured Country – #HometownChat

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#HometownChat – “Smart Community, Special Service, Civic Dreams”

It’s been a wild ride since the Trump Administration rollout. There’ve been Executive Orders flying across his desk, twice as many as days of the week. The theme so far seems to be Make America Constipate Again. So Kyrie Irving and Susan Rice show us why we need civic engagement in a fractured country.

Irving recently spoke out on one of the hot button issues. He told ESPN he wants to be remembered for more than being a pro basketball player. He surprised many in saying he has Native American blood-lines in his upbringing. Meanwhile, Ambassador Rice’s thoughts on current affairs: “This is stone cold crazy.”

During the campaign one of Trump’s sons said running for President was a ‘step down’ for his father. It’s not clear if he meant step down in prestige or difficulty. So far it’s been more like a step down in empathy. Plus, his administration is ‘governing by crowd’ as if still campaigning as opposed to graciously serving. It’s still not clear whether Trump’s governing style is to disrupt even if having to destroy or destroy as a way to eventually disrupt.

One way to understand the rush of Executive Orders is seeing them as ‘love letters’ to his core supporters. But they’ve also been ‘chaos letters’ to the rest of the country. Over the short time in office Trump’s administration created a bond with Russia and a ‘beef’ with a majority of the American people.

So what else might Irving and Rice want to #LetThePeopleKnow about the Presidency and public service as a step up or step down? What’s the difference between governing as a campaign and governing to serve?  We’d like to see service from the White House to the heartland where:

  1. Politicians make policies and solve problems through net impact not just net service.
  2. Leaders make change their friend and purpose something for which they’re a fan.
  3. Communities make Martin Luther King Jr more than a city boulevard but also a social beat.
  4. Societies make people better not just make better things for people.

The term ‘net service’ means the number of years a person has worked for a company. Usually, the larger the net service the bigger the net pension. The general public isn’t as interested in a politician’s net service as they are in their net impact. They’re more concerned about net-value results than net ratings.

Experts wonder out loud if Trump is serious about solving problems. During the campaign and right up to now he’d repeatedly fall back to his old TV habits of ‘drama ratings,’ with a love for all the media attention coming his way. To some policy makers like Rice, his Executive Orders are starting to feel like ‘net crazy.’

Change is usually good for the better. For example the anti-Obama protests of the past opposed change in healthcare that helped people. But the recent days of anti-Trump protests oppose change in immigration that harm people. There’re important clues when campaigns about ‘change’ get a closer look.

Some leaders say ‘we do it this way, that’s how we do it.. period!’ Others say ‘we do it in new ways as a fresh way of doing it.. let’s go!’ If it weren’t for Steve Jobs saying ‘let’s go’ we’d not have iPhones, iTunes & iPads. However there’s bad ‘change’ leadership of letting ignorance look smarter than competence.

In cities all across the country you’ll find a block that surrounds Martin Luther King Jr Boulevard. From Harlem to Atlanta, these streets are significant to the heartbeat of the community. There’s a legacy to uphold and a dream to unfold. These streets are like military stripes in the life of community responders.

But military stripes can be viewed as net service as well as net impact. Kyrie Irving says he’s going to speak up more on issues, thus earning his stripes as an engaged citizen. That should give us reason to step up as well to earn our stripes not only as pop culture trend-setters but also as social change-makers.

There’s that old saying of “we didn’t leave the stone age because we ran out of stones. We left the stone age because we made new things.” The benefit of more ‘bells and whistles’ in our cars and homes is a result of us inventing new things. But it’s not enough to have better things without making people better.

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In a sense that’s what protesters are saying across the country. The actions by high ranking politicians during the Obama years were guided by ‘obstruct.’ The actions by everyday people since the start of Trump’s term are guided by ‘resist.’ The history of Mandela & Martin, Maya & Marley (and others) shows the lasting good in people who protest out of conscientious resistance.

So take a flashback to high school math and those days of trying to find the ‘greatest common factor.’ This is a high multiplying effect between two or more numbers. What we need these days is to find the greatest common formation. This would be a high multiplying effect between net service and net impact.

Sports teams have offense, defense, scorers and role players in formation. We see these same multiplying factors in community as activists, advocates, reformers and commentators. If we add shared purpose and special teams to Community 3.0 we’ll make greater strides together towards more history.

Groove-tracks: Beyoncé – Formation – https://youtu.be/1xVjx_rK0xE

Anderson Paak – Am I Wrong? – https://youtu.be/2dxOpxdp0kI

Kerry Washington & Jane Fonda Want Us to Wake Up and Push for What Matters Now – #HometownChat

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#HometownChat – “Smart Community, Special Service, Civic Dreams”

Women across the country came out in droves to make their voices heard. The rallies planned in many cities turned out larger crowds than expected. Even in the coldest parts of the world men and women joined together. So Kerry Washington & Jane Fonda want us to wake up and push for what matters now.

Some are questioning whether it should have been called a women’s march. Others consider whether the Presidential campaign, transition and inauguration speech were factors. In some ways the rally events were an outpouring of emotions on the Obama years, people’s tears, the country’s fears and racial layers.

We saw many poster signs at the rallies. One with a Martin Luther King quote said “We must accept finite disappointment but never lose infinite hope.” On social media was a church sign with words from Dr. King saying “Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity.”

As the first week of the incoming administration unfolds, a new level of social activism seems to be in the making. It didn’t help that over the weekend the press secretary flat-out made stuff up in what he told the public. So it’s possible that the use of ‘alternative facts’ will grow if we fail to #LetThePeopleKnow about:

  1. The great suppression in our politics.
  2. The great confession in our culture.
  3. The great expression in our community.
  4. The great connection in our country.

In his final White House press conference, President Obama gave a list of issues he’ll be monitoring as a citizen in the days ahead. High on the list was voter suppression. He said we’re the only major democratic nation in the world that makes it harder for citizens to vote. It’s a case of suppression over progression.

This was actively done in voter ID laws, reduced polling locations, restricting voter information and raising social discontent. It’s among the WMDs – ‘Weapons of Mass Dah’ causing alarm for those who choose citizenship over political gamesmanship. Now it’s in ‘Birtherism 2’ with questions about ‘illegal’ voting.

Haven’t we seen this before, the efforts in suppression and ‘alternative facts?’ Think of it as more direct accounts of hogwash (Dah!) for telling lies and spreading delusion. Plus, the great confession in our culture has roots in the Constitution from a ‘vanilla view’ of America with Blacks seen as three-fifths value.

These ‘alternative facts’ from early days and recent times are similar to versions of delusion seen today. Some hold extreme views in their minds which say white is always right and black must step back or be out of sight. So it’s a good thing when the Courts strike down Voter ID laws from state to state.

Remember when the campaign team said that Michelle Obama’s speech was not plagiarized at the GOP convention? The person trying to do the convincing then is the same person who’s the press secretary now. After the dust settled they made a surprise confession that the speech was lifted from Obama’s text.

In the movie Hidden Figures, the role played by Taraji P. Henson taught us about moving from what is to what should be. She kept pressing until she joined a meeting of the minds with NASA engineers and decision makers plotting the next space trip. Her math skills genius was the great expression in the room.

This kind of unsung talent can be duplicated in community. After the founding of the nation we saw Community 1.0. After the Civil War & Civil Rights eras we saw Community 2.0. These shifts took us from what is, to the next level. Now we’re poised to see Community 3.0. We’ll make the shift by learning from technology which went from ‘flip to smart’ phones, from a manual operating system to Windows PC.

In community is the call for a ‘system reboot’ that moves us to set our sights, stretch our skills, strut our stuff and save our streets. It would also be a kind of ‘social moonshot’ for the fulfillment of many more ‘I Have a Dream’ promises. This would be a giant leap for smart community, special service & civic dreams.

jane-fonda

At the women’s marches people showed up not based on net worth but on forging a greater connection of networks. It was all peaceful even though we heard some ‘choice words’ by a few as hearts were opened. But there were also thought-provoking ideas shared, reminding us that as a country thinks, so it is.

Meantime, there’re cabinet posts under review to serve our nation. What we don’t want is a political moon landing that’s like stepping into dirt on ‘Trump Island.’ It would be better to see a giant leap of faith across reasonably-minded individuals who know America as the land of the free and home of the melting pot.

So while elected officials try to do ‘repeal & replace’ we should challenge their intentions of reversing the gains and returning the pains. We should also be doing our own ‘rewind & retrace’ so we understand where all this is coming from. This way we’re not going from love and happiness to wonder and sadness.

Groove-tracks: John Legend, Common, Melanie Fiona & The Roots  – Wake Up Everybody – https://youtu.be/iJgxJ6JrPkc

John Legend – Surefire – https://youtu.be/Hih2iyO-LH4