Monday, October 24, 2011

The Monday Prism

COP 24/7 Special
Can We Talk: A Rubik's Cube in Motion
A Rubik's cube is a complex gadget game that allows the player to twist and turn the module into various configurations in search of the right combination to unite each side into a solid color. It's a mind bender and certainly takes some concentration as well as effort to navigate the rotations to gain the final results. I've enjoyed some game playing over the years ranging from assorted card games to the proverbial board games such as Monopoly or the ultimate basic game of checkers. However as life would have it, each day we find our selves embroiled in some type of "game playing" or either being "played" in some fashion or another by either individuals close or perhaps entity's afar. Often this type of gaming can become frustrating, challenging and mind blowing as we try to unravel just what's the purpose of the exercise or the game that's being played. This week I received a notice concerning an upcoming Healthy Halloween event involving an entity titled "Arkansas Black Pride." On the surface I thought nothing of it except that it was another invite to a local event, however it's what lies beneath the surface is what I find most interesting and could be of interest to you too. In full disclosure, I was asked to assist with a table display for the Living Affected Corporation during the annual Little Rock Black Pride event held last summer. I was aware of this event and had commented numerous times in this forum on the structure, leadership, programming and it's funding source through the Arkansas Health Department. During that time, I had limited knowledge about the group despite efforts to be more engaged or offer my self as a source of expertise as an event producer. Yet it just happened that I found myself participating in this years event which again raised my eyebrow on the inner workings of this group. Not to mention the factor of what was "suppose to be going on" juxtaposed to what was "stated would be going on," by organizers. From my vantage point what I saw was a rather disjointed, directionless and a rather under performing event that fueled my speculation to why this event which could have a redeeming value appears to mired in poor planning and certainly lackluster execution. Even more disturbing is the fact that I've learned that many "games" were being played by President Stanley Rogers and ADH personnel as others involved may have been "played" in the meantime. So what's going on here? Well there's numerous sides to this "Rubik's cube" beginning with this group being perceived as a viable organization with any depth, mission or direction despite its affiliation with The International Federations of Black Prides. I have conversed with IBP originator, Mr. Earl Folkes who gave me the vibe that he was not amused to say the least at the groups carrying on. I believe that such an entity is worthwhile and could serve as a positive community outlet across the board. Unfortunately instead of being a group that "partied with a purpose," what evolved was more " circut party" wannabe than anything else. The Black Expo was a good idea, but haphazardly organized with mucho promises to fellow group members that didn't materialize as they were left out of the info loop. Plus expectations to its primary funder the Arkansas Department of Health that now can't be firmly substantiated and may result in some further investigation. Therefore, I understand why Folkes pursued a name switch while naming new program manager, Kevin H. as an effort to re-brand the group. All these good intentions are just fine and dandy, but the facts state that Little Rock Black Pride as it was known has been problematic in the past and this year seems to be even more questionable. And boy do we have some questions and maybe you do too. Stay tuned because we're just getting started....     

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