Change Making Uncategorized

Where Have Our Neighborhoods Gone? Pt 1-Richard Dyer

In the wake of the George Floyd’s death, I have once again sat in dismay at the destruction that some protestors have done to their own neighborhoods. I then had to sit back and ask the question: “Why do we destroy our own neighborhood?” Then I began to analyze this question in the sense that; in most American black neighborhoods today, they do Not feel like our neighborhood. Why? Because of OVER POLICING!
For example: When you have a stranger / foreigner enter your neighborhood and use unnecessary force and abuse that goes unchecked for many years, this neighborhood no longer seems like your very own.
I remember growing-up in my community–neighborhood of New Orleans (17th Ward) in the 1970’s, when the police came into our neighborhood, the elders came out and needed to know what was going on, and if the police were going to arrest someone, they (the police) was either from our community or the elders knew them. They walked our neighborhood streets or drove around and talked to us, some of them even coached our little league sports teams, so we also came to know one another. And even then, they (the police) could Not take one of us to jail without someone following them to “make sure” this is where they were taking us. . . The elders policed the police.

Our elders understood that the police motto was Not the fictitious one first used in Los Angeles — [“To protect and serve.”], because we still did Not trust the police, we know what they really stool for. And if they caught you outside the hood, they would kick our butt, so it was Not all good as one may think because there were some dehumanizing events that took place that are unspeakable, but what I am saying is, we took care of our own community and did not call the play police. The moral of this article is showing that we have “lost” our sense of community due to foreigners invading our neighborhood. Why? Because your next doors neighbor who you grew-up with that became a cop no longer lives in the hood due to the (Crack Epidemic) of the 80’s, and the “You know whose” have invaded. Long gone are our elders. Now you find a thirty-four year old as our grandmothers, and the grandfathers are either dead or in incarcerated, so you tell me, what’s wrong with this picture. That’s another article to come, but this article is about; “Where Have Our Neighborhoods Gone?” Brothers and Sisters, We need Our Elders Back. . .
We are being treated by the police for what they were originally created for in the 1700’s for; “LABOR CONTROL.” Get the point? They do Not know nor do they understand Our Culture.
Now, in all that I’ve stated, I do Not wish for anyone to think or get the impression that it is okay to destroy your own neighborhood no matter how bad things may seem or to destroy anyone else’s property, because the few elders we do have left in the community will have to go on the other side of town to shop and buy medication, some may not be able to, due to age, illness, etc., so you now have to take on that responsibility of assisting them. At the same time, I understanding the looting and burning is telling America, “WE ARE FIGHTING FOR OUR LIVES!” And yes!, some of the looters are from these communities, let’s keep it real. Why? Because the more cornered one becomes the more ill-rational one acts. Until my next post.
This article was written about me understanding your plight and bringing it to your attention, showing my support, and to tell you, it is now time for our youth to step-up and Dare To Do Wondrous Things. I believe in you and no that you are more then capable of fulfilling your obligation, so let’s take back our neighborhoods and make them a Community once again. How? Register and VOTE!, VOTE!, VOTE! Take a Friend or two With You And Make A Difference, For ONLY YOU Can Change You Conditions. REMEMBER THAT! Your Elders Need You Now, For They Have Sacrificed Much For You, their Blood, Sweat and our women, many, many tears. And before endings this article I would like to give you two words:

[Disenfranchisement]: It is the “taking away” of a peoples human and legal rights; in this case, (the right to legally discriminate against the created Black man or African American), by creating a system that would incarcerate him and give them the label (Felon or criminal). This way you can legally discriminate against them and deny their right to VOTE where a real difference can be made. These things are also called:

[Social Contract]: In this manner, we are talking about, the government using punishment as a tool to control the urban communities. Meaning; the Government decides how much punishment they will implement, and these decisions are in no simple way related to crime rate. The stark and sobering reality is that, for reasons largely unrelated to actual crime trends. And the American penal system has emerged as a system of social control unparalleled in world history. And while the size of the system alone might suggest that it would touch the lives of most Americans, (the primary target of its control can vividly be seen as directed toward us).

These phrases has been defined to give an understanding of what is being discussed / related to you in this article. Although, we will be discussing these topics in articles to come, I just had to post this brief writing as a question posed to self. I wish to know, how do you feel or see this question from your perspective?


Richard Bey

Contact Information:
Email at: ( or (by mail): Please make sure you include name and return address inside top of letter.

Richard D. Dyer-Bey, #186882
Thumb Correctional Facility
3225 John Conley Drive
Lapeer, Michigan 48446-2987

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