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Standing on Integrity Verses Economic Pressure

Do You Have Freedom from Economic Terrorism?

There comes a time when professional integrity is at stake:  does one then embrace one's materialistic trappings or does one find the tenacity to stand on one's personal conviction.  Today's professionals desperately need to stand on integrity to bring about social justice and equality to the clientele they serve.

Are you providing yourself the economic foundation you'll need when your principals & values come into question?

Ask Yourself If You Fit Into The Scenario as Follows

The number one threat preventing black professionals from standing on integrity, honesty and truthfulness is economic terrorism:  I define economic terrorism as follows:  “Economic terrorism is defined as the perceived/verbalized or written threat of loss of income.  It can also come in the form of the perception or anticipation of a ruined or derailed career, and/or the destruction of one’s reputation or credibility.”  Economic terrorism has the same psychological and emotional effect as racial profiling, it’s an affront against human rights, economic rights, and professional training.  A legacy of terror and fear grips the minds of the professional, embedded in the psyche.  Look at those gifted, talented, committed, professionally trained and culturally competent Blacks just collecting a check and waiting to retire.  Are we content with just getting paid?  Did we pursue our degrees to become order takers or administrators? 

Economic terrorism denies the ideas, talents, and wisdom of individuals who are silenced and/or parked in their jobs.  I have met many black professionals who paid a professional price when they had the courage to say, “This strategy will not work, or that strategy has failed.”  But other Black professionals who watch on the sidelines as our brothers and sisters who take a stand are subjected to economic terrorism have to live with their decision(s).  Economic terror is when we are compelled not to join the ranks of those who are right because we fear for our own paycheck.

I believe it is our destiny as black professionals to challenge the practice of economic terrorism, because to many gifted brothers and sisters are being silenced and ruined because healthy and fair dissent or opposition is being oppressed; we need these creative people to fulfill their destiny.  The black community needs our leadership and wisdom, as well as the white community does we all will win if we lead. 


The year 2065 will mark the one-hundredth anniversary of Black people's full inclusion in democracy.  Will it find us still fighting individuals who practice economic terrorism or will we develop on a larger scale our own schools, social agencies, private practices, clinics, and recreation centers to develop the human spirit?

In order for civil, social and economic justice to prevail in America every generation of Black people has had to pick up the cross of oppression and carry it. Well it’s our turn now  to follow in that long tradition called resistance.  I had no role in removing the actual chains from my flesh, but God sent Nat Turner, Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglas and William Monroe Trotter.  I had no role in eliminating brothers and sisters from being lynched, but God sent the brothers and sisters who joined and fought along with the NAACP.  And finally I had no role to play in 1967, at The National Convention of Social Workers when a group of Black social workers walked out to form what has become the National Association of Black Social Workers.  Why did these people take such measures?  Black people's needs were not being met, and it’s up to professionals like us to improve the living conditions for all of our people.

In the field of human and social services, a leadership and power structure has developed that is just the opposite of the population these sectors service.  Most of our clientele (approximately 85 %) are Black and Brown, yet the individuals with authority and power are primarily middle class white suburbanites.  The results of an elite suburban "authority" setting the agenda for education, prevention and/or interventions with inner-city youths have had dismal to mediocre results at best.  Surely those individuals currently in positions of "authority" do not posses the gift.