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Jonathan L.

…I am no one, and at the same time I have to be someone. I am a nameless faceless generation rising up from the depths of “teenage complacency.” I am the rich man sipping his wine on a summer afternoon in the Bahamas, and I also am the poor homeless women that gets passed by millions of people each year who don’t want to know that she exist. I am all the mistakes from the past, the franticness of the present, and the beauty of potential in the future. I am intelligence wrapped up into a cocoon of stupidness. I am stupidness surrounded by an uncountable amount of peers with more wisdom than this world can handle at one time. I am justice when unfairness is the only thing available, I am unfair. I am contradiction, hypocrisy, and redundancy. I am what people say I shouldn’t be. I am an agape lover, a helpless romantic, a passionate leader. I am no one, and at the same time I have to be someone. I am Jonathan Lykes…

Follow on Twitter: @jonathanlykes

Follow Jonathan L. on Twitter: @jonathanlykes

Posts by Jonathan L.

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From Emmett to Trayvon: A Burgeoning Youth Movement

Exactly eight years before the original March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom (August 28, 1963), Emmett Louis Till was murdered on August 28, 1955, after allegedly flirting with a white woman. He was fourteen. In the civil rights movement, Emmett’s death woke up all those who forgot or chose to ignore the realities of […]

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Lessons From Bayard: A Radically Inclusive and Intentionally Intersectional Youth Movement Stirring in the Shadows of the March on Washington

As young millennials construct a path to travel into a radical space of direct action and youth led social change, it is imperative that we critique and learn from many of the mistakes that were so blatant in our 1960’s civil rights movement and with the 1963 March on Washington. Bayard Rustin –being the visionary […]

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The Power That Youth Hold: A Toolkit and the March on Washington

I am encouraged by the vigor and fresh activism of my generation (Read: BYP100 and Dream Defenders). It causes me to see a light at the end of what has been a very dark tunnel. However, if there is in fact a light at the end of the tunnel, are we prepared to run? Do […]

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What Shall I Tell My Children Who Are Black: Don Lemon, the Politics of Image, and the Stench of Respectability

“What shall I tell my children who are black, of what it means to be a captive in this dark skin? What shall I tell my dear one, fruit of my womb, of how beautiful they are when everywhere they turn they are faced with abhorrence of everything that is black. The night is black and so is the boogyman. Villains […]

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Fruitvale Station & Oscar Grant: Why Our Anger Is Necessary

“Anger is a grief of distortions between peers, and its object is change…I cannot hide my anger to spare your guilt, nor hurt feelings, nor answering anger; for to do so insults and trivializes all our efforts. Guilt is not a response to anger; it is a response to one’s own action or lack of […]

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Beyond Electoral Politics: A 21st Century Poor People’s Campaign

“We will lead waves of the nation’s poor and disinherited to Washington, D.C. next spring to demand redress of their grievances by the United States government and to secure at least jobs or income for all. We will go there, we will demand to be heard and we will stay until America responds. If this […]

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DOMA Unconstitutional, Religion, and the Right to Be Equal

This week the Supreme Court ruled the Defense of Marriage Act unconstitutional. To be clear: Do I think this decision will help black youth directly? No. Am I happy as hell that  blatant and intentional bigotry rooted in homophobia, sexism, and religious radicalism is finally legally recognized as wrong in my country? Hell Yes. This is not […]

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Heat Win A Championship, Lebron gets a Ring (Again) & Poor People are Still Marginalized

Yes, the Heat are the champions, again…woopdie-doo *sarcastic tone*. I said it before and I am inclined to reiterate a similar point this year. I watched game seven of the NBA finals last night from the booth of a DC “U Street” Bar. The room battled with cheers and boos as the Spurs and Heat […]

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Chicago School Closings, Linked-Fate, and the Power of a Shared Experience

When we view young people like Asean Johnson, shouting, crying out and having their voice heard in the name of opposition, it does two things. It encourages us all to remember that the next generation of black youth can speak for themselves, and it also reminds us that we as black people are all connected. […]

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How Will We Fund the Next Generation of Non-profit Work?

Non-profit organizations have impacted my life in so many ways. As I reflect about after school programs that helped me develop, scholarships I received for college, and what encouraged me to become an activist, the common denominator is the various non-profits organizations that I have impacted my life. At times I worry about how many […]

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