“Who Really Cares?”

“I just want to ask a question

Who really cares?

To save a world in despair”...Marvin Gaye - “Save The Children” - 1972

I wrote a letter to the editor of the St. Louis Post Dispatch almost 30 years ago after the televised beating of Rodney King by some rogue LA police officers. And it is still relevant today.

I wrote this letter from the lens of someone who grew up in the streets and also from the lens of someone who allowed God to deliver them from sure death or a life in the penitentiary.

I wrote this letter from the lens of someone who grew up in the middle of the Civil Rights era and see the same struggles played out today, only this time on social media and videotaped from cellular devices.

Nationally we’re a house that is severely divided and division leads to sure destruction. Sadly our leaders are stoking the fires of that division for re-election disregarding the real needs of the people.

(Mark 3:24-25)

“If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand”.

WE NEED HEALING AND THAT HEALING CAN ONLY COME THROUGH HUMBLING OURSELVES BEFORE AN ALMIGHTY GOD!

This letter is not meant to be a political statement it is a heart statement from the depths of my heart!

Here it is:

“At the core, the Civil rights movement benefited those already poised to seize the opportunities that opened up. Sadly, a considerable segment of the African-American community remained behind to perpetuate the vicious cycle of teen-age pregnancy, drugs, alcohol, crime and death by homicide or suicide.

Arguments abound about ideologies. Various groups point fingers at each other. Theories differ about the causes and solutions to these problems. One fact is certain; it is no longer just an inner-city problem. Like a cancer, these problems have spread to every segment of American society.

Successful cancer treatment removes the cancer before it spreads. Successful treatment removes the cancer at it’s roots. It is ridiculous to think you can treat a cancer with a band-aid. It is just as ridiculous to build more jails, hire more police, come up with more pseudo-tough laws and penalties, and expect them to rid our cities and towns of crime.

Hopelessness lies at the root of many of these problems. People live in despair and believe no one cares about their plight in life. A person’s environment profoundly affects their life. However, one CAN overcome their environment.

The message our inner-city children receive from cradle to grave is one of hopelessness. They receive this message at home, school and through the media. They suffer rejection at the hands of a dominant racist society and class discrimination from middle-class African-Americans who refuse to look back and offer help.

I speak from experience. Seeds of rejection took root early in my young mind. These seeds grew into a tree of self-hatred bearing the fruits of a rage I did not understand. Instead of committing drive-by shootings, I turned my rage inward. Unconsciously, I attempted suicide via drugs and alcohol.

Thankfully, someone who cared intervened and introduced me to Jesus Christ. Jesus did not have a hidden political agenda. He loved and accepted me with all my flaws. This agape God Love produced a change on the inside of me that empowered me to change my outward circumstances.

More police and jails are band-aids unable to cure the cancer that threatens to destroy our country. Esoteric never ending discussions about racism are useless unless followed by action. What we really need are people who care!”

The question to ask ourselves is, “How much do we REALLY care”?

And then, “How do we turn that care into action for change”?

“I just want to ask a question

Who really cares?

To save a world in despair

There'll come a time, when the world won't be singin'

Flowers won't grow, bells won't be ringin'

Who really cares?

Who's willing to try to save a world

That's destined to die

When I look at the world it fills me with sorrow

Little children today are really gonna suffer tomorrow

Oh what a shame, such a bad way to live

All who is to blame, we can't stop livin'

Live, live for life

But let live everybody

Live life for the children

Oh, for the children

You see, let's save the children

Let's save all the children

Save the babies” - Marvin Gaye - “Save The Children” - 1972.

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Jacob's Ladder Ministries

Alfred T. Long, Sr.

Post Office Box 2408

Florissant, Missouri 63032

along@jacobslm.com

Telephone: 314-282-7220