The Gantt Report:
By Lucius Gantt
I hope Gantt Report readers enjoyed the Juneteenth and July 4th holidays. I hope my people did more than eat, drink and act happy!
The people in power in the United States are quick to give you a day off work, a commendation, a medal, a certificate, a trophy or a holiday but they are slow to give you equal rights, equal votes, justice, peace, access to money and capital, freedom or 40 acres and a mule!
I know you and your children will never be taught what our ancestors thought about the July holiday because of opposition to Critical Race Theory but go on the internet, find and read Frederick Douglass’ message about “What to the slave (or ex-slave) is the Fourth of July?”.
I’ve written about that famous speech before.
Today, I want to talk about our most elusive freedom, economic freedom!
I grew up on the tough streets of Atlanta, Georgia. My early years were spent in one of the city’s most famous housing projects, old “Carver Homes”. Later, I lived in my grandmother’s neighborhood, Fourth Ward.
Everyday I would walk through “Butter Milk Bottom” to get to C.W. Hill Elementary School.
Once I got to David T. Howard High School I started spending time on Auburn Avenue, that’s where the hustlers and pimps used to be. That’s where my paternal grandmother lived just two houses from Daddy King and MLK Jr.
No, I didn’t know Martin but I went to a different high school, Grady High, with King’s daughter Yolanda.
Back to Auburn Avenue, more than pimps, pick pockets, puppets, pirates and panhandlers frequented “Sweet” Auburn, there was two of Atlanta’s most famous Black Churches, there was Atlanta Life Insurance Company, The Atlanta World was a Black newspaper that was published daily and the Brunswick stew was the best in the world served at The Auburn Avenue Rib Shack.
In other words, back in the day, Black people in Atlanta, in Harlem, in Tulsa and in other cities had jobs, businesses, banks, insurance companies, schools, hospitals, hotels, restaurants and more.
What do we have today? We have holidays and a so-called called Negro History Month.
I knew at a very early age to be successful in a capitalist society you had to have capital!
At age 19, I was married and had a wife and child I needed to support. I’m single now but you never stop being supportive of your children.
I’ve come a long way from the housing project and the pocket of Fourth Ward once called “Bucket of Blood”.
As you would expect, not many believed I would amount to anything. Growing up in a poor neighborhood, getting arrested multiple times, being shot and stabbed before and clapping back and shooting at people that shot at me.
But I believed in myself. I believed in my Black friends and neighbors. I believed in my education and my training and I believed in God’s plan for Lucius!
Year after year, I would hear people say “Lucius ain’t gon’ be nothing, all of his friends are drug addicts and criminals”. They also said my company, All World Consultants would never make any money.
Well, in my opinion, naysayers were terribly wrong! I think I’ve done some things in my life that the politicians, imperialist press members and so-called Black community leaders can’t go to sleep and dream about doing.
I make and take my own holidays, I’ve managed to make significant amounts of money and I talked about the beast while I was doing good things for my people and my community!
I encourage Gantt Report readers to believe in your God, believe in yourselves and to follow your dreams.
The black stones that the builders refused will one day be Black community cornerstones!