Think of Something Else … Like The Children!


Happy Friday, All!

I just want to say that I still must give it up to my Creator … T.G.I.F!

I must comment that as I look at many of my friends and former co-workers posts on days like Thursday afternoons and Fridays, I see what I use to feel … “Get Me Out of Here Already!!”  Trust me, and I am not rubbing it in, I don’t miss NONE of that stuff!  I am so tired of the “rush!rush!”-syndrome that I actually can enjoy myself and relax nowadays.  Those of you who know me also know that I am not selfish and “neverendingly” grateful!  THAT’S how I roll, too!  Sometimes, I am like my father, Big Ike was.  I knew that he loved me … as best he could …. but he seldom if ever … said it …  So, I being his son, took a lesson to MY life and ALWAYS try to let folks know how much I appreciate them.  There … I said it!

A few days ago, there was a “National Day of School Walk-Outs” at approximately 10:00am, I read, and the students from all over the country “staged” this event to let “us” know how much their lives mean to THEM … if not to us!!  Yeah, y’all, this touches me to the freakin’ bone because I have never felt so cared for by “people” who were actually my students at White Plains High School when I taught there for ten years!  Yes, many of them knew of my personal problems as well as family issues, not to mention the never ending politics of a public school district like White Plains, NY.  And they still cared for me while others only sought to judge me.  Now don’t get me wrong, they did an exceptional job with busing youth from “The Projects” to better equipped schools in the more “suburban” parts of the City of White Plains.  There was no need to FORCE integration into the minds of the politicians and city officials of White Plains … and the youth … as witnessed by a “riot” at White Plains High School … had to come to grips with the FACT that we co-existed in the City of White Plains, Westchester County, New York!  There was a huge all day “fight” in the hallways of the High School shortly after integration had come full circle.  There were elements in both the “minority” community and the “Silver Lake” community inhabited by “whites only” with a few chocolate chips in the cookie whom I remember well.  They were “brothers and sisters” who were either light-skinned enough or conversed on a certain level … and were able to “fit in” okay in the parts of Silver Lake where they resided.  The real work was yet to come, and I applaud the youth in the City of White Plains for having come full circle while much of the nation’s cities school populations are still “segregated” philosophically!  The students that I had the pleasure of teaching at the High School demonstrated a willingness and the ability to “co-exist” and exchange cultural traits like parties and outings held by various groups of students that reflected the population of the City.  They played team sports together and became a powerhouse in Westchester County for many years, and I even coached some of them though I was a social studies teacher.  Rather recently, one young man who is now a “minister” as well as his wife … try not to judge them … and was a former student/athlete when I taught at the High School, told me something very special when I was literally suffering through some troubling personal issues … He said, “JC, Man … you have no idea how many ‘children’ who love you out here!  I for one … am ONLY one!”  My heart twittered and tears found their way to the corners of both eyes … mind you … I wasn’t crying, I says (in my “Popeye the Sailorman voice)!  Hey, trust me on this one too … It touched me to the core … and I carry those words from Minister Grady Fuller, Jr. in my heart each day!!

The school shooting in Parkland, FL on February 14th, 2018 could have been aborted … like so many others.  People in “America” only want to “step aside”, drop the ball because of low pay or lack of interest in their work and then look to “make excuses” while innocent lives are being taken away from loving communities, families and the rest due to their inability to “love”!  Yep, I said that, too! L.O.V.E. is the value that we are missing today in our leadership.  I remember when #45 was running for office, it seemed like “the cap of sensibility” had been removed from campaigning and folks were criticizing MY emphasis on love and yoga and spirituality in these pieces and in my posts on “social media”.  I stood strong then with my commitment to “Stopping the Violence” and sharing the LOVE and I stand even stronger now.  Our children – worldwide – are disappointed in our manner of “governing”.  Much of our upper level leadership is failing the people of the planet …  DON’T stand by idly and let this “-ish” happen.  Do what you can to create healthy positive CHANGE today!

Have a great weekend.  I love youse … don’t judge me!


John I. Cook, Director

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