In the book, Come On People: On the Path from Victims to Victors the authors Bill Cosby and Alvin F. Poussaint have a powerful message for families and communities as they lay out their visions for strengthening America, or for that matter the world.
They address the crises of people who are stuck because of feelings of low self-esteem, abandonment, anger, fearfulness, sadness, and feelings of being used, undefended and unprotected. These feelings often impede their ability to move forward. The authors aim to help empower people make the daunting transition from victims to victors. Come On, People! is always engaging, and loaded with heart-piercing stories of the problems facing many communities.
The issues the authors bring to light in this book are not exaggerated. But the problems to a much lesser degree are not limited to this community. Children simply exist and do not reach their potential in even the most affluent communities. The deciding factor seems of how successful a child turns out seems to revolve around how much the family and community care about the child. By success, I don’t mean to limit the discussion to grades or future earnings, but contentment and self-esteem to believe they can do anything they set their minds to.
If we want to improve the success of today’s youth we can take the approach of bringing back front porches; literally and figuratively. It’s a metaphor for people to watch out for their community and to know that each of us is known and accountable for our actions.
It does take a village to raise a child.