Leader to Leader

Leader to Leader

Friday, February 8, 2008

Who is Daryl Mikell Brooks

I have been a resident of Trenton and New Jersey for 39 years and I can say in all honesty that I love this place. It has been my home and my support for a long time. It is the place that provided me with an education, with work and with opportunities. As a former host of a talk show on WTTM and Comcast, running for Congress in 2004 and US Senate in 2006. As editor of Today's News or founder and president of Positive Link, the needs of this community have always been foremost on my mind. As an activist I have sought to confront those issues that plague our neighborhoods: drugs and alcohol, guns and gang violence, an inadequate educational system and police corruption.

I seek to create relationships and build bridges between residents, business leaders, politicians and social-service agencies. I want to recognize the voice of our young people and, with everyone, to begin the serious work of change.
My friends, America is a troubled place and we have all seen too many dreams fade away in the face of hopelessness. We have millions who are impoverished, millions in prisons, and millions more without access to decent healthcare. We live in a nation where not one, but both of the leading parties - yes Democrats and Republicans - have abandoned those who need them the most in order to guarantee the privilege of those who line their pockets. But there is one thing they have forgotten; there is one thing that they have underestimated. They have forgotten that it is precisely those who struggle who built this country and it is the poor, the oppressed and the neglected who will fight the good fight to make it great.

As the president of the Poor Peoples Campaign, I have joined people of faith all across this country in taking up the banner of the late Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. to say that we must not let dreams of a better world remain dreams. We must fight to make those dreams a reality. We must always pray with our hearts, but we must also pray with our hands for a tomorrow where equality, opportunity, peace and justice are not just nice words at campaign time but the lived experience of every generation.

And what kind of prayer will that be? It will be a prayer to reform a criminal justice system that continues to measure color of skin towards verdict. It will be a prayer where all people are treated with the dignity they deserve with access to health care. It will be prayer that seeks to squash poverty, where we fight for better schools and education and where we protect affirmative action. It is a prayer to preserve this creation that God has so blessed us with and to restore cities, suburbs and country. It a prayer where we end senseless wars abroad and at home.
My dear citizens, it will always be dangerous to raise our voice as the citizens of old once did. We will always be at risk for attempting to right wrongs, but I must ask: if not now, then when? If not us, then who? The time has come for a new voice, one that places peace and justice at the very heart of its ideology. The time has come to admit that the party we have supported for so long has taken us for granted. It is time now for the Independent Party.

I ask you today for your support, your encouragement and your wisdom. I ask for the kind of support that calls people to action in November 2008 and, humbly, for the paper kind that makes it possible to run elections! I ask for your support as an African American man, seeking to authentically represent the needs of the people in New Jersey and their neighbors of every creed and ethnicity.

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