The Purge – Train
In Countering the Conspiracy to Destroy Black Boys, Dr. Kunjufu brings up the difference between training and education. A super condensed paraphrase is to say that training is received through all institutions (organizations/groups/processes). I speak on this word a lot because there’s almost a never-ending web of “systems” that compel us to act and engage in certain ways that we may not even understand. For instance, the lab rat is placed into a maze (institution) through… trail and error that lab rat eventually learns the way to it’s cheesy treat (reward). The static (rules/laws) walls of the maze eventually teach/guide the rat in a way that it learns how to act, and could rely on this training to find the cheese even if the walls were removed one day.
We all receive training, its inescapable in a way. We all (generally) go to school systems, use the roadways and train and airplane networks, are familiar enough with the legal and court systems and travel to and from some re-newable source of income that helps us take care of our basic needs to stay alive. Institutions profoundly affect life and how we think we choose to interact with it. However, teachers (used generally), are endowed with the responsibility of being activists. We (used generally) are responsible for preparing our students and other persons that express need with the education and skills to maneuver through these institutions to success.
Unfortunately, I can’t gauge others’ sense of responsibility to this cause. Nonetheless, institutions themselves create a chaos that prevents individuals from ever reaching the harmony that is propagated to us in theory. Let’s call this bureaucracy. Its just impossible to develop a subway system designed for 10,000 daily riders, that in a few short years has grown outdated and simply can’t handle the increased volume of 100,000 daily riders on the same constraints (rules/laws). [Insert your local public school system here]
Dr. Kunjufu argues that people, specifically Black people, need to go through courses that develop their education, and not their training. Education being different because it gives people the ability to constantly gauge the parameters of each new situation, then select the best method to proceed. In essence, it’s a process that teaches and encourages critical thinking in its users.
“The organization I recommend is more formal, including more boys with a program providing skill development and recreation. The program is very similar to the Boy Scouts with two major differences. The first is ideological. The political/historical persuasion of the Boy Scouts is the maintenance of the status quo, which in America is European-American male supremacy. The “Rites of Passage Program’s” major thrust is to equip African-American boys ideologically with the tools to understand why Africans are oppressed and specifically African-American boys. If this objective is not met, the conspiracy will continue. In order to resist, you must first know what you’re resisting. The second major difference is the distinction between self-directed learning and training. Boy Scouts, like most schools, train African-American children. There are fundamental differences between training and education. If you are trained you become the employee, if you are educated you become the employer. If you are trained you have a “J.O.B.” (if you’re “lucky”), if you are educated you have a career. If you are trained you have been taught to memorize, if you are educated you have been taught how to think. The Boy Scouts train boys to maintain America the “Rites of Passage” program educates boys to remove injustices of racism, capitalism, sexism, and to fuel liberation and the maximization of human potential.”(33)
I agree with this quote overall, but did feel compelled to respond to the highlighted part – I have pride for who I am. Having pledged (Alpha Phi Alpha, Fraternity, Inc. – Zeta Rho Chapter [ZPDC]) before, I do believe that I now have an anchor or roots to a history, and something that gives me a sense of active ability to continue to create and add on to that legacy. This deep pride is something I can connect with at will. It pushes me to invigoratory, or perhaps a single-step below self-sustaining levels of energy and absorption that I can focus at will. This… ability to re-write history, even if just for Zeta Rho, is observable in how I currently challenge myself in life. And most importantly how I challenge my students. It has given me an ASG-function (Always Seeking Growth). Once something is mastered, then it is time to seek a new challenge.
I’m feeling really good at making up words right now. Invigoratory is not a real word… and ASG is an acronym that I just made up… That’s why I made up the term Capitalistic Cognition. I don’t know shit about capitalism… but I do know it has something to do with always wanting more. Consume, consume, consume. Well, what if we decided to consume and absorb thought? I mean I think this is where I’ve ended up in some… weird series of events. Picking up “knowledge” like its going out of style – quick. I think this is the message Kanye was trying to send in his latest outreach.
What if you really were a King, Queen, Prince, Princess, Inventor, Writer, Organizer, General, Visionary? History is in fact being made right now. Have you thought about what you want history to say about you when you’re no longer walking this earth? When you’re trained history is something that can’t be touched. When you’re educated you realize that each passing moment is a contributing to the global history of <strike> wo/man-kind </strike> humanity.
… My bad for loose ends …