We have to ask, why the sudden push for criminal justice reform? Is there a new concern for those being incarcerated? Please forgive the cynicism but I think not. Maybe it's because prison business is no longer profitable.
Imagine that a group entrepreneurs got together to come up with the next “big” business idea. Imagine the conversation goes as follows:
Entrepreneur # 1: “We need to build something that’s going to last and has a constant supply of free resources. We don’t want to have to buy raw materials.”
Entrepreneur # 2: “Everyone is concerned about crime. Maybe we should do something along those lines.”
Entrepreneur # 3: “Why don’t we get into the prison business? We can build prisons, offer our services to states, and run them. We can tell them that we can operate a prison more effectively and efficiently than they ever could which will ultimately save them money.”
I made a conscious decision not to write about gun control and the lunacy that has been playing out in the media. It seem quite obvious to me that there is a need to revisit and revamp the existing laws. I didn't feel that there was anything new that I could contribute that hasn't been said already.
That was until the race card was played to rally support against gun control.
First Larry Ward, chairman of the national Gun Appreciation Day told CNN Friday that there never would have been slaves in America if black people had guns.
"I think Martin Luther King, Jr. would agree with me if he were alive today that if African Americans had been given the right to keep and bear arms from day one of the country's founding, perhaps slavery might not have been a chapter in our history,"
Then Rush Limbaugh during his Friday’s radio show questioned how civil rights leaders would have had to march for rights if they had greater access to firearms at the time.
“If a lot of African-Americans back in the ’60s had guns and the legal right to use them for self-defense, you think they would have needed Selma? I don’t know, I’m just asking.”
I Am Who I Am
I refuse to be categorized. I will not allow myself to be put into a box such as:
Member of the ninety-eight percent
I will be judged by the work I do not the bucket someone wants to put me in.
I will not assume everyone else knows what's best for me. I will be my own guide.
I will not believe everything I'm told and follow blindly.
I will challenge everything, question everything, and validate everything.
I will not wear rose colored glasses.
I will be my own person. I will choose my own thoughts.
I will not be absorbed by negative energy as it saps the soul.
We have become a society that feeds on social media. When used properly social media does a very good job of doing what it's supposed to, providing the mechanism for us to be socially aware. The Marketplace, like many other organizations, rely on various social media outlets as part of their mission.
Social awareness is what you know, social responsibility is what you do. I fear that we're becoming more socially aware and less socially responsible. Have we been lulled into believing that we're socially responsible when we share a facebook post or when we sign an online petition? Don't get me wrong, these things do have impact, but is that being socially responsible or merely taking action?
Social responsibility is defined as an ethical ideology or theory that an entity, be it an organization or individual, has an obligation to act to benefit society at large. Social responsibility is a duty every individual or organization has to perform so as to maintain a balance between the economy and the ecosystem. This responsibility can be passive, by avoiding engaging in socially harmful acts, or active, by performing activities that directly advance social goals.
Ernest R. Heyward is the Founder and President of the Marketplace for Social Awareness and Social Responsibility Inc.