MARTIN: There is hope in our youth and young adults

Published 1:31 pm Saturday, January 6, 2018

By JERRIA MARTIN | Drug Free Communities of Dallas County

There is hope in our youth and young adults!

“Figure it out for yourself, my lad,

You’ve all that the greatest of men have had;

Two arms, two hands, two legs, two eyes,

And a brain to use if you would be wise,

With this equipment they all began—

So start for the top and say, I CAN.”

This poem that George Washington Carver required all of his students to memorize reminds us today that youth and young adults are well equipped for the tasks at-hand. It reminds us that we are not only tomorrow’s leaders, we can also be today’s; we are not only the hopeful future, we can also be the promising present.

As a community we must come to the realization that if the time for love, the time for peace, the time for unity is right now, then we can’t keep treating youth and young adults as if their time is coming, we must treat them as if their time is right now!

One of the greatest gifts that youth and young adults have are creative minds. We have the ability to offer fresh new insight to age old problems. Creative minds can be a major advantage to any community.

Albert Einstein quoted “Logic will get you from point A to point B. But Imagination will take you everywhere.”

It was the creative Alexander Graham Bell whose work enabled him to be awarded the first U.S. patent for the telephone at the young age of 29.

It was the creative mind of a young Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. that urged a nation to believe in what seemed to be a farfetched dream.

Believe it or not, but the same imagination, passion, drive, and determination that the young Dr. King and Mr. Bell had still exists within the hearts, souls and minds of our youth and is awaiting the chance to be fostered, nurtured and used for our good.

In order to have a more cohesive community, we must begin to exercise all of our resources. One of the most overlooked and forgotten resources in the community today are the youth and young adults. This is unfortunate.

The bottom line is that the youth need us and we desperately need the youth. Even the youth deemed as misguided and troubled have tremendous potential that we must help them to realize. They have the equipment, let’s show them how to use it to empower our city.

Many of my peers did not understand why I made the choice to come home to Selma after graduating from Princeton. I always ensure them that there’s three reasons: my hope in God, my hope in every citizen of Selma, and my hope in being used by God to assist in bringing about Selma’s vitality. It is my prayer that my peers will see the great things that God is doing in me, in us, and feel the same call to come home, united in faith, ready to bless our city, because there is propitious and auspicious hope in our youth and young adults.