Penny for Your Thoughts: Insights, Perceptions, and Reflections on the African-American Condition

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9780741404923: Penny for Your Thoughts: Insights, Perceptions, and Reflections on the African-American Condition

Penny For Your Thoughts: Insights, Perceptions, and Reflections on the African-American Condition is a collection of articles written as Op-Ed Commentaries for the Chicago Defender, written between November of 1995 and August of 1999. The author describes his thoughts on a variety of subjects in the news, and other thoughts he simply felt the need to express. He attempts to describe how he sees the 20th century "going down". In 126 essays of some 600 to 750 words each there is very little repetition and, although easy to read, each one challenges the mind to think.

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About the Author:

Jay Thomas Willis was born in east Texas. He has a B.S. Degree in sociology as well as a M.Ed. in counseling and a MSW in social work. He has held numerous social work positions over the past 17 years. Now a free-lance writer, he has written several books and frequently writes Op-Ed Commentaries for the Chicago Defender. He lives in Richton Park, Illinois, with his wife and two sons.

Excerpt. Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Penny For Your Thoughts Jay Thomas Wills PREFACE

This collection of six- and seven-hundred-word commentaries started as a single item sent to the Chicago Defender Newspaper. The author was slightly surprised when the first article was published, but elated that it was. Since that time he has had approximately one hundred commentaries published in that newspaper. A number of them were excluded from this book.

These commentaries cover a variety of current topics in the news between November 15, 1995, and August 21, 1999. Thirty six other essays have been added that were not published but written during this period and considered just as relevant to the conditions of African-Americans.

It is felt that part of the problem in the African-American community is a lack of awareness; and it is necessary to awaken the consciousness of the community. The author understands the necessity for raising one's conscious level, because he personally experienced an increase in his conscious level as a result of being exposed to knowledgeable individuals. He understands what this can do and what it means. As a results he has attempted to awaken the consciousness of African-American people whenever possible through his writings. This is his way of giving back to the community from which he came. Every African-American should find a way to contribute to the cause of African-Americans; writing is the author's way of making a contribution.

These commentaries are short and to the point, but each of them makes a significant point that is worthy of one's attention and consideration. The one and only reason the author has made these commentaries available in book form is because he feels that all of them should be read by all members of the African-American community.

It is important to point out that the author has focused on many negatives that exist in the African-American community; yet, it is important to realize that we must not only focus on the negatives but also the positives. We must realize our strengths and capitalize on these strengths to improve our circumstances in the community, the city, the state, the nation, and the world.

The ninety essays published in the Chicago Defender are first presented in chronological order: according to date of publication. The other thirty-six essays are then presented in no particular order.

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