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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Rev. M. G. “Mike” Ramey (Retired) served as the Certified Modern Street Gangs Specialist & Media Consultant of “The Gang Line”. He had been interviewed in the U. S. and abroad on radio, television, and Internet about the dangers of Modern Street Gangs since 2007. His writings on Modern Street Gangs abound in print and online. Previously, he served as an award-winning broadcast journalist, producer, and TV/Radio talk show host. He has also served as a staff writer, section editor, and syndicated columnist. Ramey has won—or helped to win—some two dozen journalism awards and citations. He also holds a Police Citation for Citizen Bravery from the Indianapolis Police Department (1986). Ramey is also married, an Ordained Minister (Retired) and a KJV Bible Teacher.

Ramey is a Certified Modern Street Gangs Specialist with Certifications in Law Enforcement (2006), Non-Law Enforcement (2010), and Gangs & Cults Ministry (2017). He also has endorsements in K-12 Gang Issues and Transnational Gangs. He also carries Specialist Ratings in Cult/Occult Crime, and Transnational Human Trafficking. Ramey has also served with several International anti-gang ministries, including of Washington state (2004-2009), Thug Exposed Ministries of California (2010 to 2015) and Bishop Outreach Ministries of Florida (2010 to 2015).

In 2011 “The Gang Line” offered training and certification coursework for those interested in becoming certified Modern Street Gang Specialists: Training approaches the anti-gang ministry field through the combined use of spiritual (biblical principles/discipleship) and criminal (gang members and gang crime). From 2015-2017, Ramey served as an Advisory Board Member for the School of Criminal Justice at Harrison College, Indianapolis, Indiana, with a specialty of Organized Crime & Gangs. From 2017-2019, Ramey served as a Bible Teacher to at-risk detained juvenile offenders at the Marion County Juvenile Detention Center with his own Bible-based Curriculum centering upon Biblical Life Skills taught from the Book of Proverbs.

Rev. Ramey’s skill set includes having been a veteran substitute teacher (Secondary Education), a college instructor for two Bible colleges in the Indianapolis, Indiana area, a Probation Officer (Intensive/High Risk & School-Based) with the Marion County Juvenile Court, and a peer grant reviewer of anti-gang grant programs with the U.S. Department of Justice (2010). He also created, designed, and taught the course “Modern Street Gangs: Developing Urban Ministry Strategies—UM-190” at Crossroads Bible College, Indianapolis, Indiana (2009 & 2010). In 2013, Ramey served as a post-production Consultant for Chick Publications’ national anti-gang comic: “Black Angel”. It was translated into Spanish in 2014.

Ramey has written extensively on the topic of Modern Street Gangs with two Internet columns: “The Gang Line” and “The Gang Line Blogger” which abound in cyberspace. In a post-pandemic society, the motto of The Gang Line still rings true: “Spiritual Solutions for Spiritual Problems!”

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