CHANGE: The dictionary defines it as: to make a different or to replace with another.
President-elect Barack Obama was elected on the concept of change, and at one point even his opponent John McCain was trying to base his own campaign on the fact he was the agent for change (NOT!).
While as African Americans we overwhelmingly embraced Change by electing Barack Obama, all too often our community does not and has not always gravitated towards change. But today my friends I want to say change is good, change is necessary and change is the very thing that will help us to achieve the hopes and dreams of not only ourselves, but of our children, our community and of our people.
The swearing in of Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas replacing political icon Yvonne Brathwaite Burke is this type of change. The swearing in of Assemblymember Isadore Hall replacing political legend Mervyn Dymally is this type of change. And the election of Senator Rod Wright to replace the great Ed Vincent is also this type of change. It is change for the good, it is a breath of fresh air and it is a time of new beginnings, of new hopes and aspirations, a change from the old guard to the new and a chance for us to all stand up for, stand tall beside and stand behind these leaders who will set the course for our community for at least the next four years.
This is not an attack on any of the elected officials who these men are replacing. It is just a tribute and a demonstration of the respect that each of these men deserve for standing and stepping up to take on the task at hand. These men certainly respect and embrace the legacy and great work of those who preceded them. But, this is in fact their time, their moment to lead and as a community (no matter who you supported in the election) our time to embrace the task they have been elected to do.
Today, we stand in the shadow of these great changes not only for our country but also within our state, our county, our city and also within our own personal lives. Today, as the economy falls, the housing and job markets continue to spiral downward and as America contemplates--are we in a recession or not? (.... duh..... YES!)--we all will be challenged. We will be challenged to make business decisions that will affect not only our lives but the lives of our employees their families our community and the overall viability of the businesses we operate.
As my dad often says to me, ever so often you have to re-create yourself. You have to re do you. Well, here at the Sentinel we are taking on that challenge. Some of the changes we are sure you will like, some you might not. But in the end, we believe we will create a bigger, better and more vibrant newspaper, and a more exciting and more interactive web site presence. Some of these changes will be small and maybe go un-noticed, others will be more dramatic and I am sure as you always do, you will let me know what you think.
All I can say is get ready. NO ONE is more nervous about these changes than me. But, I am ready. We here at the Sentinel are up to the challenge and we hope and pray that all of these changes not only make us a stronger business, but help us to build a stronger community and make for a better day for all of us and our families.
(After all nothing could be worse than the past 8 years under the BUSH Administration)
So, whether you agree or disagree, now more than ever I really need your input. I need to hear from you. I need to know what is going on in our community. I also need to know what other stories we need to tell, and what is on your mind. I really do want to hear from you, I want you to "Talk to Danny."