Suffering Battle Fatigue

How I wish for a button like this today more than ever in my life. I am writing this blog so that others who are also feeling this uncertainty will find solace in another who is on that same path with you.

I have gone through many disappointing times and trials through my life.

February 1971 Stanley in Traction from broken neck at Lenoir Memorial Hospital in Kinston, NC.

In 1971 my year started off with me having to be placed in traction for a month for a broken neck. Four weeks of traction and then another eight weeks as I recall in a body cast.

Body cast for my broken neck

So 1971 I was out of commission for more than 12 weeks.

2020 has surpassed this and created an even more difficult emotion of so much uncertainty. It has created a sort of Battle Fatigue, which is an acute reaction to the stress of battle commonly involving fatigue, slowed reaction time, indecision, and other symptoms.

Friday, June 26th was a difficult day for me. It was the 2nd worst day for number of new coronavirus cases in the US and then the following day it went even higher.

The health crisis is the crisis. Addressing this will address the financial crisis. But in the US we put getting back to work over health. I understand it fully. I need to get back to work as much as every other person.

I don’t know how closely this resembles the Battle of the Bulge where American forces bore the brunt of the attack and incurred their highest casualties of any operation during the war. However that is what it feels like we are in the middle of right now.

I am marketing all my talents to an audience who doesn’t know when they will return to work. They don’t want to spend money now and have to change their messaging again.

I feel like the Grasshopper in “The Ant and the Grasshopper”, is one of Aesop’s Fables. The fable describes how a hungry grasshopper begs for food from an ant when winter comes and is refused.

The ants are looking out and see winter and there is no spring in sight.

Don’t worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking him with a thankful heart. And God’s peace, which is far beyond human understanding, will keep your hearts and minds safe in union with Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7

My Plan

While I do not know when this will end, I do know that some day it will. If I wait until then to start my messaging then I will have wasted the crisis.

“Never waste a crisis.”

Rahm Emanuel

While this is during the 2008 crisis that the White House was dealing with, the quote can be traced back at least as far as 1976, when M. F. Weiner wrote an article in the journal Medical Economics entitled “Don’t Waste a Crisis — Your Patient’s or Your Own.” Weiner meant by this that a medical crisis can be used to improve aspects of personality, mental health, or lifestyle.

Dr. Saj-nicole Joni, chief executive of Cambridge International Group, wrote an artical for Forbes Magazine titled “Never Waste a Crisis” and gave these tips:

  • First, figure out how to survive.
  • Second, ask yourself what you can do now that you couldn’t do before.
  • Finally, no whining.

Those are great tips today. The Small Business Administration is handling the PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM which is a great place to help you survive.

I would change that second tip to “Ask yourself what your customers will let you do now that you couldn’t do before.”

Be like skydivers who check to see if the winds are 10 gusting to 21, many jumpers will choose to sit down because the air feels “dirty” or “bumpy”. Check out your customers and listen to them.

Most of your customers have had their plate cleared of all those projects they were working on before the crisis. They also are grasping for the next big idea. They are more open now to listening to you than ever before.

Remember you are solving their problem and not your own. To do this effectively you need to know their problem as best you can.

Tap the power of purpose in your desire to help others. This is the time to brand yourself as the business there to help their business thrive. If you do this then sooner or later you will thrive as well.

Top Videos

Looking at some of the analytics for my video channels I thought I should share these, because the content hasn’t really changed and may help you with your photography.

Here are 8 videos through the years for you. Maybe this will inspire you today to work on something with your photography.

Share edits (Lightroom Mac/Win, iOS, Android)

Garden of the Gods [NIKON D3, 14.0-24.0 mm f/2.8, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 200, 1/640, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 14)]

One of the most enjoyable thing for me to do these days is to pull up old photo shoots. In this case of one from Colorado Springs the Garden of the Gods was shot in 2009 on my Nikon D3.

I found the RAW Nikon NEF file and opened in Adobe Lightroom. there are a few more things you can do with Lightroom that were not available in 2009.

Starting in the June 2020 release, you can now contribute your own images and edits to the Lightroom Discover section. The new “Share Edits” menu option allows you to share your editing process with the world, to help other photographers learn from your edits. When you submit your edit, Lightroom automatically creates a before-and-after sequence that combines your straight-out-of-the-camera image with your final edited image, so that others can see and learn from your edits. You can even let others save your edit settings as a preset that can be applied to their own photos.

Click on this link and then click to see my edits one-by-one.

https://lightroom.adobe.com/learn/discover/aee94f3a-96c0-4f29-82a0-62d46997b4bc

This can be a great teaching tool for many camera clubs and other photographers who like to teach.

https://lightroom.adobe.com/learn/discover/4b2204f6-d104-4edc-a072-029083af0244

I can’t wait to show some very involved editing so you can see what I am doing to improve the photos.

You Ready for Lady Luck?

“Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”

Roman philosopher Seneca

And while many people agree that luck does create some level of opportunity – a chance meeting that leads to a job interview or a boss quitting unexpectedly, opening a path to a fast-tracked promotion – nothing enables greater career success than working harder and caring more.

[NIKON D3, 24.0-120.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Manual, ISO 500, 1/200, ƒ/7.1, (35mm = 66)]

I relate career success to success in sports careers, and it is exactly the same recipe for success: the harder you train, the more hours you put in and the more you care about winning, the better you will become.

Fledgling Red-Tailed Hawk in our Backyard. Every year we get a new nest. [NIKON D5, Sigma 120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM Sports + Sigma 2.0x Teleconverter TC-2001, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 2500, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 600)]

Getting these photos of Hawks means I must have a camera ready when the opportunity presents itself. You can make a photo with your phone, but the hawks would have been just specs within the frame. I had to use really long lenses to capture these photos.

Red-Tailed Hawk in our Backyard in Roswell, GA. [NIKON Z 6, AF-S Nikkor 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G ED VR, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 3200, 1/1000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 300)]

As I write this I am looking out my sliding glass door in my basement office. I see the Red-tailed juvenile hawks flying by and occasionally landing to hunt.

My Nikon Z6 with a 28-300mm lens is beside me. I went outside and already got a custom white balance. I am prepared and just need the opportunity.

[NIKON D3, 24.0-120.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Manual, ISO 500, 1/200, ƒ/7.1, (35mm = 65)]

What things are you doing today to be sure that if Lady Luck presents herself will you be ready? Are you prepared?

What can I work on today to be even more ready for finding customers?

Wild Waves of The Sea

Ocean Isle Beach Pier, North Carolina. [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 30, ƒ/8, (35mm = 52)]

wild waves of the sea, casting up their own shame like foam; wandering stars, for whom the black darkness has been reserved forever.

Jude 1:13

“Stanley don’t post any photos of me like this,” is what I hear each year when I am at the beach with my family. No one wants to have the world see them when they don’t look their best.

People take a lot of time in front of mirrors getting ready each day and now we have tons of videos on how you can look even better with some tips from the poster.

Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 560, 1/1000, ƒ/16, (35mm = 24)]

I have noticed that everything has times of the day when they don’t look their best. Just the middle of the night there isn’t enough light to see much, but the middle of the day doesn’t give you the best light either.

Pier at Night Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 30, ƒ/18, (35mm = 90)]

I find there isn’t a guaranteed best time of day to photograph everything. My suggestion for nature is to visit the same spot over time, different seasons, different weather and time of day.

Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 160, 1/1000, ƒ/4, (35mm = 28)]

Change the lens choice as well for the subject. Get close and then step back. Get low like a worm and high like a bird.

2019 Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, VR Zoom 24-105mm f/4G IF-ED, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/800, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 105)]

C.K. Williams said that his poem, The Hearth (in The Singing), took twenty-five years to complete. I can see someone returning to a location for years trying to find the right moment that captures what continually pulls them back to that place.

The concept of previsualization in photography is where the photographer can see the final print before the image has been captured. Ansel Adams dedicates the beginning of his first book to previsualization, and is often quoted as saying “Visualization is the single most important factor in photography”.

I believe even before previsualization a photographer is just emotionally moved by a scene. It takes time to connect the head to the heart.

2019 Early morning walk on the beach at Ocean Isle, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, VR Zoom 24-105mm f/4G IF-ED, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 110, 1/250, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 48)]

Some places we return to are places where your earliest times are not even clear memories. The North Carolina beach is that place for me. My family has been coming long before I was born.

My grandmother rented a house for all of her 7 children and their families long ago. This is where I would first go and experience the beach.

So the beach for me is connected to family and the memories of my childhood.

Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/2500, ƒ/4, (35mm = 58)]

When I see a man fishing in the surf it brings up memories of my day and my mother’s dad fishing along the beach.

2019 Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, VR Zoom 24-105mm f/4G IF-ED, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/2000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 105)]

I have always been fascinated by an image being able to conjure the past. Nostalgia is much more than mere reminiscing; it’s a feeling. “Nostalgia is the warm, fuzzy emotion that we feel when we think about fond memories from our past,” explains Erica Hepper, Ph. D., a lecturer in the School of Psychology at the University of Surrey in England. … A lot can be said for nostalgia’s benefits.

Pier at Night Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 30, ƒ/11, (35mm = 105)]

So last night I ventured out at sunset and photographed the Ocean Isle Beach pier. By using a tripod and low ISO I was taking long exposure photos. When we are creating a long exposure shot, the camera averages what it sees over time. And if we are standing at the sea level with unrest water, the camera sees the waves. … In the end, it creates a foggy effect – the water doesn’t look like water anymore, it looks like fog.

You rule the swelling of the sea;

When its waves rise, You still them.

Psalm 89:9
Pier at Night Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 20, ƒ/22, (35mm = 68)]

By the way for these night time photos people were walking through. If they stayed a while in a spot then they showed up as you see here.

Pier at Night Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 20, ƒ/22, (35mm = 68)]

This is a closeup of the photo above of te people staying somewhat still.

The Annual Family Photo

Leary Family Photo 2020 at Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/1000, ƒ/8, (35mm = 24)]

Every year when my family gets together for our family reunion at the beach we do a family photo.

I always go out a few minutes early and setup my strobes. This year I am using the Flashpoint XPlor 600 HSS TTL with Nikon Z6.

Flashes setup more for fill flash to help with deep set eyes and to get rid of hot spots. [NIKON D5, Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/1600, ƒ/4, (35mm = 35)]

While this isn’t my favorite time of day to shoot photos you quickly learn through the years that you are needing to pick the friction free time of the day.

Up till now i was always trying to do late afternoon near sunset. That tended to complicate dinner time.

This year 1:00 pm. Probably the worst time as far as lighting to shoot the photo.

Strobes actually are a little brighter than the sun with high speed sync. [NIKON D5, Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/2000, ƒ/4, (35mm = 35)]

I usually get my wife to stand in for some test shots before I have everyone show up.

Leary Family Photo Ocean Isle Beach, North Carolina. Leary Family Vacation [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/1600, ƒ/8, (35mm = 38)]

Not a flattering photo, but works to balance the TTL flash to the sunlight. Here I have them set at 0 and the camera -0.3 underexposed for the photos.

Everyone gathering [NIKON D5, Sigma 35mm F1.4 DG HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/8000, ƒ/1.4, (35mm = 35)]

We figured the far left and far right and a line in the sand for them to stand on. We were done in 20 minutes. I tried to keep it short for my mother and a couple others who had some difficulty with the sand and the heat.

Manzi’s & the Kramers’ [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/500, ƒ/8, (35mm = 52)]

It was easy to just switch folks out. Again we were celebrating my mother’s birthday today as well.

Manzi Family [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/500, ƒ/8, (35mm = 62)]

Had I been planning a photo shoot with a couple and just their children I would have done a completely different approach.

Grand kids and grand parents [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/640, ƒ/8, (35mm = 62)]
The “Outlaws” [NIKON Z 6, Sigma 24-105mm F4 DG OS HSM, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/500, ƒ/8, (35mm = 58)]

Hope these tips help you with your “family photo”.

When Opportunity Knocks Are You Ready?

Fledgling Red-Tailed Hawk in our Backyard. Every year we get a new nest. [NIKON D5, Sigma 120-300mm F2.8 DG OS HSM Sports + Sigma 2.0x Teleconverter TC-2001, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 2500, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 600)]

This past week I have been reminded that there are many things beyond our control when it comes to posting photos on social media and if they get a few likes or even thousands.

Red-Tailed Hawk [X-E3, XF55-200mmF3.5-4.8 R LM OIS, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 200, 1/60, ƒ/4.8, (35mm = 300)]

First of all I am fully aware that the content you publish has to be strong or it will not take off.

Just compare the first photo to the second one. While both show a red-tailed juvenile hawk in our backyard, seeing the wings spread is more interesting. So for the most part when these were shared in social media the one with the wings spread got much more likes. It is a stronger photo.

Mostly Roswell High School students or alumni were peacefully protesting on June 2, 2020 at the corner of King Road and Hwy 92 for Black Lives Matter. [NIKON D5, 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 180, 1/500, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 300)]

The key is to create great content using the “5 W’s & the H”.

  • Who
  • What
  • When
  • Where
  • Why
  • How

These will impact how the audience responds. So this photo of the young lady protestor isn’t all that different than this one here:

East Roswell Peaceful Protest at the corner of Old Alabama Road and Holcomb Bridge Road on June 3, 2020 [NIKON D5, 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/250, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 190)]

Tapping into Social Media Influencers

Influencer marketing is a form of social media marketing involving endorsements and product placement from influencers, people and organizations who have a purported expert level of knowledge or social influence in their field.

Some of my followers have there own network that if they choose to do more than just like my post, but re-share it then this is where “Opportunity is Knocking”.

The difference was who my audience is on social media. Many of my followers knew people in the event with the young lady protesting on June 2nd photo, but not the same for the June 3rd photo.

The first event also was on the first night we were really seeing protestors in Roswell, GA. After posting many people were commenting and sending me emails to know where the next protest was happening.

So once a few of my followers posted in their social media my photos they took off. WSB-TV the local ABC-affiliated television station for Atlanta asked to use them as well as many other news outlets.

The Roswell Police Department also asked to use the photo since it was a Peaceful Protest and they wanted to show they supported the community.

That one photo of all the protestors laying down on their stomachs and hands behind their backs like George Floyd was share so many times I cannot even began to count. On my Instagram Page alone 385+ likes. Just my Facebook Page 100+. But then when you start adding up all the shares and their likes the photo has thousands of likes.

f/8 and be there is an expression popularly used by photographers as representing the importance of taking the opportunity for a picture rather than concern for the technologies with which one does so.

WeeGee
Ascher (Usher) Fellig

Being at the right place, at the right time and having your camera settings so that you will get a well exposed, in focus photo is part of the equation. You must know in your head the “5 W’s & the H” so that you have the right lens, position and composition to make a photo that connects with the audience.

East Roswell Peaceful Protest at the corner of Old Alabama Road and Holcomb Bridge Road on June 3, 2020 [NIKON D5, 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 100, 1/250, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 48)]

when opportunity knocks

Clean Plate – You cannot take on new work if you have too much on your plate already. Make it a priority to always get your projects done in a timely matter.

“Don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today.”

― Benjamin Franklin

Observe what’s happening around you – You have to know what is happening in your community, state and world. Nextdoor.com is the best way to stay in the know about what’s going on in your neighborhood—whether it’s finding a last-minute babysitter, learning about an upcoming block party, or hearing about a rash of car break-ins.

Give people a reason to follow you – You should look to strategically use each social media channel based on its strengths and demographics, and give your target audience a good reason to connect with you on that specific network. What value are you providing? What are you offering that will entice them to stay tuned in? Think about the reasons people use each network, then formulate a plan to consistently post and share content that will resonate with your specific audience, wherever they congregate online.

Libby Segar leads the group in chanting. She is holding the “Dear White People ..” sign. [NIKON D5, 14.0-24.0 mm f/2.8, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 450, 1/1000, ƒ/8, (35mm = 14)]

Never, ever buy followers and fans – Some people assume that purchasing fans and followers is a shortcut to building a huge online community. This is not only bad practice, but it will largely end up being more of a problem than it’s worth.

Authenticity – At the end of the day, authenticity is what makes influencers influential to the public. Therefore, authenticity needs to be a top priority.

Here is a video from the first protest and the second. Which one do you think got more views & why?

We all want change

Ever since we started to experience the pandemic of 2020, I have been reminded of the Serenity Prayer.

God grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,

The courage to change the things I can, and

The wisdom to know the difference.

Roswell Protestor

One of the ways we have taken action these past few month was to 1) Wash your hands frequently, 2) Practice social distancing & to 3) Wear a mask when you do go out into public.

While many have been practicing these CDC guidelines we still have the COVID-19 virus.

Then in the midst of all this we have been reminded that this virus is affecting some in our community more than others. This is especially true of the African American community.

In the midst of this George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, & Breonna Taylor were all brutally murdered. Finally enough is enough was being said by not just the African American community but my Roswell Community.

“Enough is Enough is one of the many protest slogans for this Roswell Peaceful Protest

Gwendolyn Dukes, Richard Bonito and their friends organized a peaceful protest on behalf of George Floyd at the corner or King Road and Hwy 92 in Roswell, Georgia on June 2, 2020. Dukes said, “Action speaks louder than words” as to why she and her friends wanted to get out and protest. Richard Bonito added, “We are not mad at the police, we are mad at the system.” They want to see changes for better policing, fixing systemic racism in our society and encouraging their friends to get out and vote. While Richard Bonito voted in the last presidential election most in the crowd are closer to Gwendolyn’s age and this will be their first election.

Libby Segar leads the group in chanting. She is holding the “Dear White People ..” sign.

My daughter’s generation are tired of seeing their friends mistreated. They want change.

Sydney Black far left protests the Black Lives Matter, with many from Roswell community.
Mostly Roswell youth who went to or going to Roswell High School organized protest at the corner or King Road and Hwy 92 in Roswell, Georgia on June 2, 2020.
“I understand that I will never understand. However, I stand.” The white protestors are very aware in this crowd that they have privileges due to their skin color.

I believe the timing of these deaths in the midst of this pandemic might just be perfect storm for bringing about change to fixing systemic racism in our society.

Roswell young people in the protest realize that protesting alone isn’t enough. They know that this is part of the process to get their communities to make changes to the policies that allow for racism.

They are asking people to become informed about who is running in our elections and vote for those people who will enact change the changes the tide of Systemic Racism.

Black out Tuesday was June 2, 2020. It was a day to recognize that everyone, but especially the African community of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, & Breonna Taylor.

Rather than being fearful of the rioting that has taken place, Peaceful Protestors are taking back their streets of their communities. They don’t want the rioters and looters to take over the conversation.

All over social media groups are forming to have peaceful protests. Go online and find a protest near you.

Plan to protest? Here are tips to reduce the risk of spreading #COVID19:

✔️Wear a face covering

✔️Wear eye protection to prevent injury

✔️Stay hydrated

✔️Use hand sanitizer

✔️Don’t yell; use signs & noise makers instead

✔️Stick to a small group

✔️Keep 6 feet from other groups

The protesters are all laying down just like George Floyd did when he lost his life to a cop on his neck.

Steve Hixon – My Freshman Roommate at ECU

This past week has brought back some of the words that Steve Hixon, my roommate from freshman year at East Carolina University, had challenged me. He had grown up in the racism of the deep south. By just being white I had no idea of all the privileges I had due to skin color alone.

I have never been pulled over just because of the color of my skin. I haven’t had people avoid me walking down the street.

I had not really experienced not being looked at as a human being as Steve had been treated.

“Iceman” is what Steve Hixon’s nickname was on the basketball court. While we were put together as roommates at East Carolina University in Greenville, NC, I saw “Iceman” more on the basketball room than in our room.

We were both Social Work majors. We both did our concentrations in Alcohol and Drug Abuse. However, while I went the direction of using photojournalism as my way of helping people, Steve went on to work as a Social Worker in Richmond, Virginia.

This is how I looked in college.

Now Steve wasn’t my first African American friend, but Steve was the first one that I would live with and get to have lots of conversations with during our college years.

Steve said I would never have him to my home. Sadly that never happened. My home at the time was in Englishtown, NJ and I just came home during the semester breaks.

This past week watching George Floyd being killed by white police officers while other police officers stood by and condoned his actions was sickening. What is sad is this has been played out over and over through my life.

I see people constantly treating people of color unjustly. The lady in Central Park treat a man based on the color of his skin alone with such disdane.

I think the response of Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in his op-ed piece in the LATimes is good.

Too many people are not realizing how not just the George Floyd case isn’t fueling this civil unrest. The COVID-19 Pandemic has opened up many wounds in the African American community. Do you remember the Brown vs Board of Education?

Children were not equal when it came to staying home and going online to do school work. Many don’t have computers or internet connections.

Without the schools many of our children go hungry because they no longer get the meals through the school they desperately need. Why? Not because their parents don’t work, but because their employers pay them so little that no one can feed their family and put a roof over their head with these wages.

Then think of all the people who are working from home. Sadly there are many whose work cannot be done from home. This is hitting the minority communities the most.

This is where those of privilege have blinders. They fail to see how they got into a college not based on their grades alone, but because of legacy. A study of thirty elite colleges, found that primary legacy students are an astonishing 45% more likely to get into a highly selective college or university than a non-legacy. Secondary legacies receive a lesser pick-me-up of 13%. [Article]

How do we fix this?

I do not hold the silver bullet that will answer this question. I can only say I can see some things we can do that could help.

  • Vote – Do your research on those running for office. Not just president and congress. Get to know who are running to be district attorneys and judges. Vote those people in who want to change the system to be more just for all not just the privleged.
  • Open your homes – the eleven o’clock hour on Sunday morning in America has been called the most segregated time in America. We cannot just learn to work with people of different races. We need to truly create all inclusive communities. This means we need to invite our co-workers and neighbors into our homes and build friendships.
  • Get out of your comfort zone – Say yes to opportunities in your community. Volunteer for a Habitat for Humanity Build. Be intentional that you are looking for ways to move beyond your homogeneous circle.
  • Challenge your Faith Community – See if your faith community could find another faith community that is different and to activities together to get to know each other. My church Roswell Presbyterian Church did a Race Reconciliation project where we were paired up with another socio-economic similar church that was African American. So we were mainly just different in skin tone and not economically. That was eye opening for so many.

I believe tolerance and understanding are intertwined in the path toward human progress.

Let’s not let all the rioting make all of the white community uppity. Not much has changed since Steve Hixon, my college roommate, challenged me that I wouldn’t be welcomed into my home.

We must do as Keisha Lance Bottoms and Police Chief Erika Shields did on Sunday. They realized they cannot let justice be handled in the same way when it came to the night before when officers pulled two college students from their car on live TV and tased the male and roughed up the female student. They put everything else aside and reviewed all the body cameras from that event and moved swiftly and fired two of the officers. They put the others involved on desk duty for the time being.

Atlanta mayor: Two police officers fired over excessive use of force during George Floyd protest

It is time for action not more research on racism. I think Michael Jackson’s video Man in the Mirror hits perfectly.

“I am starting with the man in the mirror.”

– Michael Jacson