The Search For Perfection


Dr. Umar Johnson

I’ve been meaning to write this for a long while now and it’s finally come to a head after an article I read and debate I had about Dr. Umar Johnson, a well known figure in the push for education reform. Along with Dr. Johnson’s information on the disparities and inequalities in the American education system comes a host of rumors, fraud allegations, and angry people who disagree with his strong opinions.

Anyone who stands in front of a microphone and professes their truth must know that the spotlight shines on not just your words, but every part of your being. In an age of celebrity spectacle, listeners want to know about one’s personal life, beliefs, opinions, economic status, and any and everything they feel they are entitled to. But are they?

I wrestle with this notion simply because the general public want privacy and yet seek to expose those that give the information they may need. No one man has all solutions to the fallacies we are surrounded by, but is it right to expose the dirt on someone that isn’t relevant to the message they are attempting to get across? I think not.

I have my issues, some of which you have seen in past blog posts, videos, or by knowing me personally. I won’t run from them nor will I divert attention from them because my struggles (past or present) make me who I am. But I would rather the masses hear my faults from me and make a determination about my character rather than someone who either has no clue or holds a one sided view. There’s 3 sides to every story, and while the people harmed may profess an altercation to be grander than what it is, the person who caused the harm will minimize the situation to prove a contrasting point; and then the truth may or may not surface.

I speak from my experience in being involved in the Black community as an activist and poet, and in this realm there are those who will expire all means to destroy the credibility of another person publicly. Those standing in the public eye are well aware or should be aware that this is the case. It’s not fair, and it’s spiritually and mentally draining to have your personal business blasted on a mass scale. But honestly, I think having your personal life exposed does 2 things; 1. It gives understanding followers a history of your background, and instead of taking it for face value, most people with discernment can understand through your past why you were given the task or gifts you were given. 2. It also gives the people that despise you something to talk about. Since destroying you is their focus, gossip keeps your name spoken and in the hearts of those awaiting your downfall. Think about it this way, to gossip takes more than one person, so you know that at least 2 or more people are speaking of you at any given time. So embrace the rumors, clear them up or clarify as needed.

The people doing the exposing should also ask themselves 2 questions; 1. Is the information I’m exposing a set back or a move towards progression for the movement I am a part of? Anyone can justify wrongdoing by proclaiming its for a greater good, and as The Honorable Bill Cooper says, no one wakes up in the morning and sets out to do evil, they literally do not perceive what they’re doing is wrong.  Asking yourself how your information affects those around you shows that you’re about the movement without showcasing a biased agenda.

2. Is the information you’re exposing relevant to the message the exposed person is giving or what they stand for? When we use our imagination one can find so many ways to connect dots that have no relevance to one another. For instance, in the article I read about Dr. Johnson, the author exposed that he has 2 open child support without any mention of the circumstances that led to court involvement. I’ll leave my perception on child support to the side (for now…) but what does that have to do with the need for an education system  that engages young Black boys? Yes one can say that apples and oranges are both fruits that grow from trees, but again the relevance to one another are very remote and distinctly different.

There is no such thing as a perfect anything, except Love, and even that is tainted by our perceptions of what we think Love is. In an age where so many people are breaking their silence and spreading messages of injustices and solutions to them, it would be difficult to hear someone speak out that doesn’t have a few spots on their past or even present  that are not proud of. That in no way means that we should condone someone’s dirty deeds, or their use of their persona to bring mischief into them, but how can any man expose another for things they have done when we all have fallen short or dropped the ball in various areas of our lives. People have a habit of judging a man not by his heart or the message delivered, but from the dirt we can expose about them, which can easily be concluded as wrong and immoral. We look for perfection in those that possess the bravery to stand in front of the masses and yet we are not perfect ourselves. Most people lack discernment and understanding and yet we seek this in the leaders we watch and follow. Is it because they are doing something you never did, or have courage that you never had?

With that being said, how easy was it to turn away from the known fact that Dr. Martin Luther King was an adulterer? How quickly did we forget that Hillary Clinton knew about the of smuggling weapons through Libya, into Syria, and into the hands of known terrorists? We knew and saw so many contradictions surrounding people in leadership positions and yet those facts are swept under the rug and emptied from the American mind.

I doubt this nation will ever get to a point where tabloid bullet points don’t make us salivate. But before discrediting the leader, we should first self-scrutinize, and then lead ourselves.

Dr. Umar Johnson is one man with a checkered past and arguably present, but the information he gives can be used to build institutions and programs that will outlive the gossip, rumors, or even dirty facts about the man himself. Now his opinions are very questionable and anyone has the right to disagree with them, but I encourage you not to look at the man, which is human flesh, understand the gift within the man, which is divine.



Love Again….

If for some reason
You were shattered and scattered across the earth
I would spend all of my days trying to find you.
I would take the time to,
Piece you back together
To remind me of your presence and your everlasting touch.
You never have to wonder why I love you so much,
Since I will take the time to prove it in my movements,
Or show you when I hold you.
I’ll tell you when I smell your sweet fragrance in my midst
That you’re a gift that I will never take for granted.
Most wont understand it so,
We don’t have to hand in explanations
We prove our love with action and the obstacles we overcome.
We move mountains,
We climb over hills and attack this life aggressively
And live like its our only one.
And you’re my only one in this life and the next
So in this time or the next one
I’ll love until my breath is gone.
And when I wake in another body created
I will dedicate that life to find my wife and have your love again….



Hiatus in 2015

It’s been a little while since I’ve written anything, and even longer since I’ve created any videos. Even my social media platforms look scarce. Some may say writing can’t be my passion, because your passion should pour from you effortlessly, like water from a pitcher. Anyone who expresses their gift on a constant basis should know that there comes a time when a giver needs restoration. Even a pitcher of water needs to be refilled at some point, and like that pitcher, I needed time to refill.

2015 taught me the value of seclusion. It taught me to get away from the hustle and bustle of Life and sit still; quiet myself and let situations manifest as they should.

One of the great things about Life is that even when you think you are in control of it, when you fight and claw and scratch to gain and maintain things as they are, Life has a way of pushing back with equal force that which you fight to maintain. But when you let Life work, with pure intentions, Life will always work for your favor. It will speak for you when you have no words. It will guide you through confusion and lift burdens off of you, even those everyday occurrences you don’t consciously recognize as burdens will seem light as a feather. Life will keep peace in your vicinity, while those around you are prying the gates of Hell open.

I didn’t start 2016 with a New Years Resolution, but I proclaimed to Life that this will be the year to finish what I started. To completely let go of people or situations with a pure heart, and to complete the tasks I’ve been given with divine determination.

That doesn’t mean you will see a post everyday, but as I progress, I ask that you walk with me on this journey called Life, and watch as Life moves on my behalf.

I love each and every one of you, who have given your words of support and encouragement, or your email questions and discussions, and for your attention and time. I don’t take any of it lightly.

I pray that the winds of Life gently blow across your cheeks, and that all that you ask Life for, again with a pure heart, will come to pass.

Peace & Blessings for you and your families in 2016.

Inside Nianda Speaks



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