Author Archives: Carl A. Cooke

He is

I am blessed

He is my savior 

I am free of worry

He is my protector and shield from danger

I am strong in Faith

He is the almighty with whom all is possible 

I am not fearful or dismayed

He is always strengthening and upholding me

I am never disappointed

He is blessing me in ways I do not even know

I am never lost

He is guiding my in the right direction 

I am only man, and I am not perfect

He forgives my stumbles

I am one of His children

He is my Heavenly Father

He is my Lord. I praise Him, 

He is my Lord. I will give thanks to Him

He is my Lord. I will worship Him

He is my Lord. I will exalt Him above all others

Happy Birthday Dad – Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad

On March 4, 1913, an exceptional man was born in Edenton, North Carolina. Thirty years later, on March 4, 1943, now living in New York City, that man married an equally exceptional woman from Richmond, Virginia. Charles and Frances Cooke spent a lifetime helping others, their door was always open to family and friends, and they were well known for their willingness to assist those in need and dispense wisdom and advice to the neighborhood youth.

On September 1, 1966, after a lifetime of giving so much of themselves to others, they watched as a young boy was birthed into this world. This child was not their biological son, but they adopted him, and that child could at times be a handful as he was known to throw a temper tantrum or two; yet they never wavered in their love for that child, treating him as their own flesh and blood. They instilled in the young boy the importance of education and respect for women and imparted the moral values he lives to this day. I know this to be true because that young boy is me. Never once did they give me any reason to doubt their love for me. Never once did I wonder if they would be there for me, never did I want for anything and, while they are gone from this earth, never do I doubt that they walk with and look out for me every day. 

My father taught me how to throw a ball, took me to my first ball game, taught me how to drive, and showed me how to live my life the right way, not by his words but by his actions. He taught me how to be a man.

My mother read to me when I was a boy, picked me up and wiped the blood from my knee when I fell, wiped the tears from my eyes when I was hurt, and  encouraged me to always believe in myself

On this my father’s birthday and my mother and father’s anniversary, I want to say thank you to both of you, you are without question my heroes; I would not be half the man I am today without both of you, and every day I am eternally grateful that the good Lord put you in my life.

Still Dividing Each Other Even in Times of War

Let’s be clear the war that Russia is waging on Ukraine is WRONG, HORRIFIC, TRAGIC; the death of mothers, fathers, children at the hands of a war machine activated by a crazy power-hungry authoritarian is beyond sad and deserves as much condemnation as it has received and as many prayers for the citizens of Ukraine that can be offered.

But what is also tragic is that we are still dividing ourselves over color as a species. Comments in the coverage of the Ukraine war include, “It’s very emotional for me because I see European people with blond hair and blue eyes being killed.” And “This is not a developing, third-world nation; this is Europe!” As well as reports that students, immigrants, and others from Africa (or who are of African descent), India and Pakistan who have been trying to flee report being delayed, sent to the back of the line or outright rejected, primarily because of their skin color. Basically, the message being sent is, OMG, how could this be happening to white people in Europe no less. This is not some brown person in Africa or the Middle East. We can accept that, after all, they aren’t civilized like us, so their deaths are OK.

How can we ever expect to move forward as a people when these attitudes prevail among some. What gives the world the right to consider the deaths of innocent men, women, and, yes, children of color as acceptable? What gives the world the right to turn its back on refugees of color fleeing carnage in their country while welcoming Ukraine refugees with open arms? What gives the world the right to play God and pass judgment on who deserves to live and who is expendable.

In the movie Aliens, 2, Ripley tells Burke. She doesn’t know what species is worst because she doesn’t see them fucking each other over. Until we as a species get past this ridiculous concept of defining each other based on the amount of melanin in our skin, we are doomed to fail.

Remember, dinosaurs roamed the Earth for about 174 million years; man has been around only about 300,000, and our penchant for self-destruction all but guarantees we will destroy each other long before we even come close to a number of years the dinosaurs roamed the Earth. It may not be today, it may not be tomorrow, but it will happen, and we will have no one to blame but ourselves. Perhaps whatever takes our place on this beautiful blue ball called Earth, unique among all others in the cosmos, will be much more enlightened than us.

Prayers for Ukraine

Explosions light the night skies.
Families huddle together as bombs explode around them.
Children lose parents to the violence.
Parents lose children to the violence.
Husbands lose wives to the violence.
Wives lose husbands to the violence.
Lives are forever changed.
There can be no doubt that those who commit such atrocities, as well as those who look to find good cause or heap praise on them, have hearts that are cold, callous, and filled with hate. As a people, we can only hope that the love the majority of us have for our brother and sister is enough to stand strong in the face of such evil and the darkness it resides in.

Let us pray and send thoughts of love for the citizens of Ukraine

Rest in Peace my Brother

Fifty-six years ago, civil and human rights icon Malcolm X was assassinated. To this day, some like to push the false narrative that all he was about was hate and racism but what he was is a man molded by the inequalities of the times in which he grew up in. He preached the importance of Black empowerment, which even to this day is threatening to some. What many who push this false narrative about him neglect to point is that he was not only a man of courage and conviction but a man who was unafraid to allow his personality to evolve as he was exposed to new things, and after a visit to Mecca he stated that seeing Muslims of “all colors, from blue-eyed blonds to black-skinned Africans,” interacting as equals led him to see Islam as a means by which racial problems could be overcome. 

Rest In Peace, my brother

Shatter the Present, Build a stronger Tomorrow

Yes, it’s true that when you look at me, you may see fear, you may see worry, you may see stress, you may even see me cry, but those emotions are part of what it means to be human. And I am, after all, only human. As a human, I am not ashamed of those emotions because I have learned that sometimes it is necessary to shatter the present to build a stronger tomorrow.

Lobster and Steak for them Crumbs for us

They control the narrative to make you believe you should fight among yourselves for crumbs while they dine on steak and lobster.  They want you to think that the worker making minimum wage is your enemy when they dare say they should be paid more instead of realizing the true enemy is the corporations who criminally underpay you for your labor. Between 1978 and 2020, CEO pay has skyrocketed 1,322%. CEOs were paid 351 times as much as a typical American worker in 2020. During the same period, the minimum wage increased by 173% and has not risen in a record 11 years. This is no accident because capitalism is designed to elicit the highest profit margin. To obtain that profit margin, employers suppress wages and benefits. At the same time, necessities like rent and food continue to trend upward. Corporations spend billions of dollars to convince the average American they are somehow less of a person if they don’t spend money on high price luxury consumer goods.  For the average American, these goods are usually obtained through credit with typically high-interest rates keeping many in a cycle of debt, and to keep their head above water, they are willing to accept substandard wages and fight others like them for the crumbs thrown at them while the big dogs feast on steak and lobster