AdjustMENt of Attitude = AdjustMENt of Altitude

 

It was my pleasure and honor to address the men of Morgan State University on Wednesday, April 6, 2011.  The topic: AdjustMENt of Attitude = AdjustMENt of Altitude.  Although most of us have heard variations of this theme before, the layout of the letters suggest the heart of the discussion…this was about and for MEN.

We closed the door to our “Man Cave” and talked about many issues important to men.  In particular, I made a point to discuss where we were as men 100 years ago (This was in tribute to Kappa Alpha Psi.  We’re celebrating our centennial this year.  The Brothers of the Alpha Iota sponsored this event).  We then compared that to where we are as men today.  Given all of the political, economic and technological progress of this past century, socially we discovered that we find ourselves in similar places, particularly in our own communities.  We discussed the fact that many of us grew up in households without our fathers, that the vast majority of our ladies are giving birth as single mothers, and that in some states, 50% of us are dropping out of high school.  Given that President Barack Obama is in the White House, it became clear that political and economic progress does NOT move us from boys to men.

We spent the rest of our time discussing how we DO move from boys to men.  The discussion was frank, real and honest, and I made a point of pushing these young men to consider the type of men they are TODAY, and whether or not they’ve achieved the type of manhood they envision for themselves.  To their tremendous credit, the young men were open to critique, praise and knowledge.  They ALL participated eagerly and enthusiastically.  I LOVED interacting with them.

I’d be remiss if I didn’t note that a very BRAVE young lady came in and sat herself amongst us in the man cave…taking diligent notes the whole time.  I acknowledged her presence, which she handled gracefully, and we continued our discussion without hindrance.  I would also point out that she clearly made an effort NOT to participate in the discussion, but to observe and take notes.  If only we ALL did that from time to time….

We simply did not have the time to address ALL of the issues we could have, and wanted to, address.  The most common feedback I got was that they wanted more time to talk, and that they’d like to do this more often.

I’m finding this to be true in all of my male discussions.  Gentlemen are HUNGRY for conversation with, understanding of and support from our own ranks.  It’s time for us to STAND UP for one another.  Be brave enough to be the leaders in our homes, our families and our communities.  The young lady that kindly visited us was a reminder that we’re ALL hungry for that.

Thank you to the Brothers of the Alpha Iota of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. for sponsoring the event, Morgan State University for hosting it (as part of a month-long series of events celebrating men), and in particular, thank you to Mr. Kent Ballard, Ms. Toya Corbett and Ms. Towanda Barney of Morgan State University.  There are countless others responsible for putting together such an important series of events, and there isn’t room here to acknowledge all individually for their efforts.  They are, however, GREATLY APPRECIATED.  Finally, thank you, thank you, thank you to the gentlemen who participated yesterday, and in turn enriched my life.

Sound Off!

Broadcast Your Inner Champion!

 

2 Responses to "AdjustMENt of Attitude = AdjustMENt of Altitude"

  • christine black says:

    I applaud you for reaching out to the brothers, with the opportunity for open dialogue, addressing the journey of our past and offering words of encouragement and direction as they move forth on the pathway into their future. I give God thanksgiving and praise for you and the work you’ve embraced to make a difference in the lives of so many young men. May you and the work you have undertaken prosper and be a blessing to all. Amen

  • steveberlack says:

    Thank you Christine! Your prayers give me the fuel to keep going. With God’s help, we will make a positive difference in the lives of our young leaders….

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