The Quick Scan by Mike Ramey



     Recently, I happened to see on my local TV news one of ‘those’ stories featuring a young Black man, about 21 years old, who was in one of ‘those’ local grass roots programs to keep young people away from crime.  Their ‘unique’ idea was to play games, ‘listen’ to his complaints about life, and basically give him a ‘warm’ feeling about staying ‘mediocre’.

      Back in the not-so-distant past, a young Black man at the age of 21 was one year away from graduating college; possibly finishing his apprenticeship for a well-paying blue collar job, or was in the military getting ready to qualify for his first set of sergeant’s stripes.  In short, he was an achiever—not claiming ‘victimhood’ status.  He was DETERMINED not to be a victim in life.

      What has happened to Black people?  Have we been treading water in the equity, equality, and diversity witches’ brew for so long that we have forgotten how to be achievers without also putting an asterisk after our names claiming to have ‘made it’ by playing the victim card?  Are young Black folks so ignorant of our history as a people that they can only ‘make it’ via the alphabet soup mafia?

      I’ve noticed something quite shocking—but only because of the ignorance of the American ‘Mainstream Mess’.  Twenty-one years olds in Japan, China, the UK, India and even in the motherland of Africa know the value of an education.  Their education structure—for the most part--has respect for teachers, discipline in the classroom, and a standardized testing system that gets students ready for college and careers by the truckload.  A lot of the ‘wokeness’ is not available in the second and third world…or even in some first world nations.  Only Americans—sadly some young Black Americans—do not have the mental grit to achieve.

      If you doubt me, check out your local hospital and notice the last names and faces and races of the doctors, nurses, specialists and therapists employed there!

      What a waste, and a burden for the rest of us because we—as parents and relatives—who HAVE achieved have to be ‘content’ with our youth being ‘young, dumb, and mediocre’.  Balderdash!  The French Foreign Legion has a motto for its soldiers: “March—or Die!”  Perhaps we need to get back to developing a motto for our young people: “Achievement—or Mediocrity!”  When we as a people had nothing, we struggled and ACHIEVED!  Now that we have a little money, we are content to have many of our youth like this 21-year-old in my story—expecting those Black folks around him to get ‘excited’ because he can tie his shoes without being asked.  Hint young brothers: REAL sisters don’t want a ‘mediocre’ man!

      I’ve worked with young people of all races over the years.  The formula for success is quite simple:  The ones who want to achieve are worthy of my time.  The ones who want to ‘exist’ or be ‘mediocre’ in life are not!  It’s either excellence—or extinction.  YOU get to choose!

      Mike Ramey is a Retired Minister, KJV Bible Teacher, syndicated columnist and Bible Prophecy Specialist who lives in Indianapolis, Indiana.  “The Quick Scan” is one of a variety of his columns appearing and abounding in print and cyberspace, written from a biblical, business, and common-sense perspective since 1996.  To drop him a line—or a whine—the address is still the same:  ©2023 Barnstorm Communications International.

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Ramey is married and resides in Indianapolis, Indiana. He is a Christian, an Ordained Minister and KJV Bible Teacher. Since the 1980s, Ramey has won--or helped to win--multiple journalism awards and citations (including 3 CASPER awards). He holds a Police Citation for Citizen Bravery from the Indianapolis Police Department (1986) presented by the late Mayor William H. Hudnut III, and an award as ‘Best New Internet Writer’ (2003) “Black Men In” from Mr. Gary Johnson, Publisher.

His career also includes serving as an award-winning broadcast reporter, producer and TV/Radio talk show host in the Indianapolis market since 1981. In addition, Ramey has served as staff writer and section editor for The Indianapolis Recorder, and a freelancer for The Indiana Herald. Ramey has also served as a guest Op-Ed writer for The Indianapolis News, a staff writer for The Indianapolis Star, and a freelancer for BOTH The Associated Press and USA Today Newspaper (Gannett).

In business as an Anti-Gang Specialist & Consultant since 2007, Ramey is the Modern Street Gangs Specialist of “The Gang Line”. He has been interviewed in the U.S. and abroad on the dangers of Modern Street Gangs. Ramey is a Certified Modern Street Gang Specialist, with Law Enforcement (2006), Non-Law Enforcement (2010) and Gangs & Cults (2017) certifications, plus endorsements in K-12 Gang Issues (2010) and Transnational Gang Tactics (2010). He has held workshops, trainings and consultations with and for street-level/school-based personnel. He carries Specialist ratings in the area of Cult/Occult Crime, Transnational Human Trafficking and has served as a national/transnational consultant to various faith-based anti-gang ministries.

Ramey has also served as a veteran substitute licensed teacher (1986-2011), a college instructor, a Probation Officer (Intensive/High Risk & School-Based 2001-2007) with the Marion County Juvenile Court and a peer grant reviewer of anti-gang grant programs for the U.S. Department of Justice (2010). He also created, designed and taught the course UM-190 “Modern Street Gangs: Developing Urban Ministry Strategies” in 2009 and 2010 at Crossroads Bible College, Indianapolis, Indiana for those who desired to serve Jesus Christ in an Urban Ministry environment. Ramey also served as a post-production consultant for Chick Publications’ anti-gang comic: “Black Angel”. It had a 2013 national release, with an international Spanish-language version released in 2014.

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