Now that Father Mike Pfleger has awakened some sleeping giants in the form of excited protesters, the City of Chicago and even some elected officials have been moved by this over the top call to action; now that the hidden hands of power know that the leader of St. Sabina Church has the juice to stop traffic in its tracks, they’re secretly wondering what’s next.
To everyone who either joined the highway shut down, screamed from overpasses, watched the news coverage from afar, prayed for the protestors’ safety from local churches–and especially the mayor, the governor and city council members–notwithstanding the haters who criticized the mission from the beginning, I ask the one major question and that is, “what are each of you gonna do now that the traffic has resumed speeding down the Dan Ryan”?
Over the last few days, I’ve witnessed smart people spending countless and useless hours smacking about the shutdown on social media as though this drastic move was gonna solve our many concerns. People, this was meant to get our attention. And it did! But unfortunately, folks are acting as though this South Side pastor is the lone Avenger who will either heal the weak, cure the sick and shut-in, or better yet, he has played us like puppets.
Remember the blockbuster movie the Avengers, which consisted of dozens of heroes? And if you know anything about cape crusaders, most times there’s more than one. A single super-hero (Pfleger) cannot defeat the many enemies that plague cities or states like Chicago and Illinois. He needs for everyone with super-powers, intellectual capital, money, resources and pure unadulterated hustle to suit up!
And if the reality show type Negroes would stop spending all day commenting on Facebook and Twitter and pull out their Iron Man or Wonder Woman costumes from the attic and hit the streets, we could win and win BIG! Because we need Chicagoans who have skin in this game of survival to either bust through corporate gates, kick-in drug dealers’ doors, stand outside the mayor’s and governor’s home, as well as vote out of office elected officials who have not joined forces with the hood Avengers fighting corruption.
Everyone has to play his or her part. This struggle for freedom, equality, liberty, and justice will require for not just one common man to stop traffic, it will need for a host of Avengers to stand up to fight wherever injustice, bigotry, and hatred shows its wicked and destructive presence.
Father Pfleger shut down the Dan Ryan last Saturday. This Saturday, another group should have planned to shut down Lake Shore Drive. Then the Saturday after that, another group should be planning to halt traffic on the Edens, followed by stoppage on the Ike, concluding with shutdowns of I-57, I-90, and every other main passageway where disruption can send a strong message that “enough is enough!”
If you social media experts were to stop cat-chatting for a moment and start executing strategies to repost, we might continue the initial push by Pfleger to get more of their attention. And this way, Father Mike could not be seen as the “go to” person in the community, as I’ve heard people claim. That premise would not exist because there would be many “go to” people who also stopped the flow of traffic, shut down malls, and closed unwanted groceries stores in our community, etc.
Again, in the fight for freedom, everyone has to do their part. You cannot make change without getting your hands dirty. And if that requires certain casualties of war, then so be it. I got my parts handled. But the one that’s ultimately important is to script (our) narrative as we plan master strategies to transform the communities where we live, work and play. What’s your part? Whose attention you gonna get?
Carl D. West is the CEO/Publisher of TBTNews and founder of the TRUTH 4 Literacy Foundation, Leadership Luncheon, Legend and Pioneer Awards, all powered by Midwest Gap Enterprise.