I just read a recent article wherein there is a lot of talk about giving the 1.5 million dollar stimulus fund package to the low-income housing area in and around Sycamore Meadows: “the Green,” for long time members of the community. As those of you who know me can imagine, I was very pleased and awed that finally this area, that houses so many young Black people relegated through circumstance to depend on public assistance, was finally going to get some relief. Until now, this community was not only left to fend for itself for many years, but was actually being driven into the ground by the local management, remote ownership, and local government. For just a few examples, they removed playground equipment, the basketball court, a little free library, and to top it all off, the township plans to move the nearest library branch, but not let the community decide how to use the former space.

All in this area heavily filled with little Black children and single mothers. To hear that finally there was going to be some form of relief—not just from the pandemic, but from the many years of neglect that the township and county bestowed upon the area, from the enslaving lease agreements, from over-policing, from violence endangering the whole community—I must say, I was really psyched about it.

Until I read on and found that just when such long-needed relief was being agreed upon, there was already back peddling on the idea. I want to take the time to shout out to the sisters, Bernice Lindke and Rhonda McGill, for pushing for this relief for the area. As many of you know, the desire to “Free the Green” and areas like it from the oppressive dynamics that are created by neglect of community care as a whole is one of my passions. Even while sitting in the belly of the beast (MDOC) for my past efforts to do so, I am calling out, to all who are able, to push hard to ensure that the measure already voted on and passed goes through. A community center is a much needed addition to the neighborhood and it would make my heart glad to see it established. I know that those children in the surrounding areas would benefit from it immensely. I know because I know those children, I was one of them, and one of them is my son.

When you create a void, something always rushes in to fill it. There are areas in our community where all help has been withdrawn, and we wonder why they are filled with violence and crime and mismanagement. It’s because it’s seen that the larger communities have abandoned these areas, and that makes them ripe for any and all to do with as they please.

Let’s bring these areas back into the fold of community, where the protection and love of community can ensure the peace and prosperity of those living there, where all children have an equal opportunity at a good life, where the village as a whole aids and assists in the raising of children, and the job is not just left to single mothers. These mothers didn’t get into this circumstance by themselves, why should they be expected to get out of it by themselves?

We can’t finish until we start, let’s make this happen!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s