When the Spirit of Detroit Warriors become Weary
by Chellyz View
It was Saturday, April 28, 2018, and as usual I sat on the edge of the bed. Another typical morning where I would procrastinate and do meaningful and unmeaningful tasks which causes me to run late every day. Sitting in one spot for thirty minutes is a daily ritual while thinking about the scheduled events that would be attended or the activities that should be completed during the day. As time passes I decided to scroll through my phone. I found an article that stuck to my eyes like that unwanted piece of tape that continues to linger on your hand or clothes that you just can’t remove. I was compelled to read the Detroit News article written by Robert Snell entitled, A deadly rivalry / Chapter 2: The Seven Mile Bloods Hunt for Rivals After a Chance Meeting on Detroit’s West Side. My heart, mind, and body couldn’t mobilize itself to function after reading the article. I thought about a generation of young people who needed guidance. They had the traits of being Warriors, Game Changers, World Shakers, and Productive Leaders to uplift Detroit in a positive manner. However, the skills they possessed weren’t used to add comfort to the community. They used their skills to survive in their neighborhoods and to fit in where they felt they had a sense of family.
Comeback, Comeback, everybody talks about the Comeback of Detroit. However, who cares about a comeback if they ain’t experiencing the fragrance of roses and the warmth from the rays of the sun. The brutal scent of inequality is unpleasant. Blocks with abandoned houses, water shutoff notices, and a failing school system, but hey who really cares? Not the people who are basking in the comeback. Again, I just sat there asking myself, Where are the Warriors? We need you! Let’s come together and save our village. Then my mind drifted to a flashback of last week.
After visiting someone who lived in a nice secluded suburban subdivision, I thought this is an oasis. What if I packed my bags and pushed the family outta the “D” and we disappear into the Oasis. I shook my head to the left then to right as my internal response said, “NO.” I realized My neighborhood in Detroit is My oasis. Everyone can’t run. Everyone can’t turn their backs and ignore the discomforts and disparities of the village. Everyone can’t lose sight that, we are the change. We ain’t Saviors but the Almighty from above did equip us with tools to save ourselves. Most importantly, He gave us Warriors, but their spirits have become weary. In the dictionary the synonym for Warriors are soldiers or fighters. The Warriors are the ones who put on their armor of discipline and self-sacrifice to ensure not only their children are taken care of, but everybody’s children on the block. The Warriors are the diligent and dedicated individuals who develop non-profits, have become vigilantes on street corners, plan community events, volunteer at recreation centers and after school programs, donate to charitable causes, and strategize protests and marches to rally against crime, violence and find missing children. However, these Warriors are too weary. The Warriors are the grandmammas, granddaddies, and elders on the block, but they are fading away like the illusion of an oasis.
The young people in Detroit need to know they deserve peace, love, comfort, a real sense of family that cares about their well-being. Three months ago, I remember meeting a man who seemed to be a Mighty Warrior at a local recreation center. I briefly told him of an event I wanted to plan for the community at the center. He studied my intentions with a distraught look on his face. The Warrior politely told me, “Ma’am good luck with that.” He expressed he had been apart of community events for over 30 plus years and at times parents won’t bring their children to different programs. However, if there’s a basketball game, the place is packed. I felt his frustration. I have experienced the disappointment first hand. I also remember planning an event and trying to do almost everything with limited help and it was a partial disaster. A fun-filled event became a chaotic moment that was showcased on the news. I am not a Warrior, but I am an Advocate for my Motor City and felt defeated.
Small setbacks could discourage anyone ranging from a Lifelong or a Future Warrior. What I learned is if we are serious about changing our surroundings we can’t worry about the past or setbacks. We must learn to plan for the good, bad, and indifferent. Be prepared that there will be the benefits of rewarding results, and the heaviness of sadness on any given day. However, we can’t allow the deterrents of doubt, and the lash from naysayers stop our desire for progression, or we would have all given up hope for better days many years ago. I know there are some Seasoned Warriors out there, but it is time for New Warriors to step up. These Warriors will not come from the fictitious land of Wak…….well, I’m not going to say it. Those individuals who choose to ignore the problems about our lost children, loss of self-worth, loss of financial stability, and loss of value don’t have meaning in the village. Many children and adults have wandered to unforbidden territory. They have become addicted to the rise of adrenaline caused by unwarranted actions and often criminal activity. They need guidance from the Warriors to help them find their direction that will lead them to new beginnings. They need to connect to the Warriors, but we must help the Warriors because they are weary and need encouragement and assistance.
The Tried and True Warriors have paid their dues and must pass the torch of saving our city to the Pristine and Eager Warriors before it entirely loses its flame. The New Warriors must add some fuel to the flame to rekindle the momentum and keep the commitment of saving the lost souls of the village. Who will accept the call? Who will be willing to show compassion to those who want the help to accept change? You may get weary, but who doesn’t? Find your calling. Find something you are passionate about. These babies, our people, and Detroit needs you. The community longs to be pampered when it feels neglected. I don’t want to just have conversations, but I want to find solutions. If you have any suggestions, please leave them in the comment section. My heart would love to hear from you! Will you step up and be the next Warrior?
-Let your heart be full of new ventures that will lead you to the possibilities of limitless conversations!