Monday, October 7, 2013

C L Bryant's "Content of Character" tour kicks off in Tampa

Last Thursday, Reverend C L Bryant kicked off his "Content of Character" tour right here in Tampa.  The Eye was there to video the event and to hear what Bryant and a panel of some  active in our local community had to say.  Reverend Bryant is a Baptist minister who was a former president of the NAACP's Garland, TX chapter. He created and is the creator of the highly acclaimed and successful independent documentary Runaway Slave which is about freeing the Black community from the slavery of tyranny and progressive policies.

Here's the entire video that you can watch to hear all that was said and hopefully share with others.

Bryant stated the Black community historically has had great strength in the face of horrific adversity.  But is the Black community really free at last?
It's been 50 years since Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech on August 28, 1963 and Bryant decided to celebrate the 50th anniversary by taking his Content of Character event on tour.

Martin Luther Kings's Birmingham jail letter was mentioned by EJ Otero who was on the panel.  I suggest everyone read it or read it again and think about what we are experiencing today.  

Some general themes and take aways from the Eye:  
  • The Black pastor on the panel believes in leadership from the pulpit - he said "if one is ignorant about God, one is ignorant about a lot of things"
  • General concern with young people (the millennials)  who seem to be taking our freedoms for granted, yet are disillusioned with their future, thus the YOLO (you only live once) theme of having fun and "me-ism".
  • Our kids are a mess because parents are a mess - caused largely by the breakdown of the family
  • Fair but no favors - Frederick Douglass
  • Inverse relationship between power-rights
  • Those who care enough to vote but not care enough about how to vote
  • Bryant asked why are Blacks still angry?
    • Black professor - we got educated but still feel forgotten and still  do not get opportunities
    • Anger is glamorized by pop culture - anger from missing family, faith, fathers
    • Bryant mentioned that the black community is familiar with abuse but afraid of the unknown
  • Panelist Willie Lawson defined character as doing the right thing when no one is looking
  • Black pastor stated we "Cannot teach character without teaching God"
  • Hispanic EJ Otero: Don't let "victimization" define us- look where we have come from.
  • Question asked:  Is there anything - color of skin, sex, economic, etc. that keeps you back?
  • We have a need to rebuid the family - rebuild the male "man"
  • Teach responsibility, good moral values and standards because today there is 72% illegitimacy in black community
  • Tribalism encourages those to give back to the community not back to the family
  • Slaves seek comfort while tribal chiefs serve a master
  • We need to start judging by what we bring to the table - not judge by what one takes from the table
  • Judged not by dependency but by contribution
  • Young have lost self-sufficiency but there is still a place today for self-sufficiency and content of character

Reverend Bryant is taking his Content of Character on the road across the country. There will be a panel discussion in every city. We applaud Bryant for driving the conversation and for an open and honest discussion that all Americans need to discuss. You can get Runaway Slave on Amazon. His new movie will be coming out at the end of the year - Red, White and Black.   We'll let you know when it's available.

The Eye also attended the Black on Black Crime Townhall that Tampa city councilman Frank Reddick organized last  month.  We were glad that Reddick took this issue on. Here is the video of that event.

One of the main issues questioned was how to reach the black male youth population. This event was the first of more to come.  We are encouraged that our local black community is engaging in an open dialogue for how to address this and the black on black crime issue.

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