My random thoughts that I wrote down in my notes after I found out my friend is homeless and there is little I can do...
so basically in college i often get frustrated with academics/teachers/administrations ability to disconnect. they teach about racial “equity”, poverty, business, history or whatever but many times do not actually do anything substantive other then right a book or speak at a conference or teach bunch of kids who just need a grade. yes some of them are important people in their fields, but they have the ability to disassociate. meanwhile the people who are their case studies continue to go through real issues or their students still have crazy realities. for example there was this dietitian at my school talking to us about important things to eat, so i asked her what does she think about food deserts in DC and does she do any activism using her expertise to make any human rights claims because people literally have access to nothing but rotten vegetables and sodium. i knew that was dumb to ask because of course she’s not going to be doing any free work or extra hard stuff for a bunch of black people, but its like if you are telling my what is “needed” to survive and you know people two train stops away are not getting that.. what are you doing about it? (i hope this makes sense)
anyways i personally feel like my college education will do nothing to change the world or my community if it is not a group effort. me getting a degree does nothing but continue to create inequality.. of course i am learning some great stuff, but its almost a burden. (sidenote idk if you know about Marc Lamont Hill getting hired for his comments about Israel, that had me shook because i was learning about that and considered speaking out on my platform.. granted nobody can fire me but its still scary that some people are so hostile against Palestinian rights).
anyways i also sometimes believe that a higher education is just used to take black people from their communities so they don’t form stronger bonds to build together. its almost impossible to stay connected to your community while trying to achieve capitalist goals. i want to feel like i can do both but i know i have to chose one over the other. i literally went on a rant about this to my professor because I'm like SNCC was made up of black college students, but did they ever think it can do more harm then good?
like am i naive to think that i can really become the head of the federal bureau of prisons and dismantle the whole thing and abolish prisons? do i think i can make everyone believe we should abolish prisons, when everyday its seems like we are getting further and further away from a united agreement of racism and morality.
i am saying all of this because someone i know from the Bronx is literally in the worst situation i could ever imagine, its not Greg or any of them. i just feel like how can i continue on with my life trying to fix something and i don’t even have the courage to fix things in my backyard. why do people do that? why don’t we feel a personal responsibility for things that other people are dealing with. yes because of individualism and this false sense of egalitarianism but i want more of an answer for it.
but along the lines of Greg, the fact that this person i know is going through something really bad, scares me because it makes the situation with Greg's family more real because if this person i know can be homeless, that means they can to. people will possibly die and I'm just supposed to be a bystander because I'm scared or because in a few weeks i can go back to school and start a dream job and not look back if i don’t want to.