I once got a very mean text that said, “Every time Tom Joyner prefaces a sentence with ‘I’m just a d.j.,’ I know something dumb, shallow, ridiculous  or racist is about to come out of his mouth.”

Well, first of all, words hurt.  And second, it probably just means that you don’t agree with my point of view. And this might be one of those instances.

I’m just a d.j., but I don’t think we need to be involved in Syria. I’m sad about all the people who have been killed by chemical warfare but not sad enough to be willing to sacrifice losing more American lives, especially when I’m not even sure that we should have been in any of the other wars we’ve been in for the last 10 plus years.

Years ago, when I got my first radio job after graduating from college, I worked for a station in Montgomery, Alabama. I had to attend news conferences on behalf of our station.  I had no journalistic training, but I knew how to ask questions about things I cared about.  And no matter what the topic of the news story were we covering was, I’d raise my hand and ask the same question: “What does this mean for Black people?”

I still think it’s a legitimate question and I’m asking it now.

Even though unemployment rates are down a little, unemployment in major black cities is dismally high. The average kid is attending a high school that is struggling and doesn’t have the resources to get them prepared for life after. After graduation, one of the most viable options is to join the military.  So, there’s a disproportionate number of black men and women fighting and I don’t want to see any more of them die.

I support the Big Chief, but this time, I think he should listen to the majority of the country on this one. Like a lot of our social media comments expressed: Funding an air strike might put us in greater jeopardy with the Middle East. That means sending more people over there.  I say enough. I’d much rather see those funds used to invest back into cities like Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, New Orleans, Philly, and the list goes on. There’s a war going on in the streets of those cities every night and even though I know it isn’t true, it looks like no one cares.

If more jobs were created, a lot of our problems would disappear. I know it isn’t this simple, but why do we always have enough money for war?

Not everyone agreed with me of course:

“Tom, we don’t want another Holocaust. We should stop them as a team with other countries and not go in there alone. That will make an even more powerful statement.”

Another person who supports the idea of reacting to Syria said, “War creates jobs and boosts the economy.”

Maybe.  But since we have no guarantee that our participation in Syria will achieve what we’re hoping, let’s stop gambling on a possibility and let’s start investing in the people and communities here at home who need it the most.

Russian president Putin upset a lot of people when he implied that the United States isn’t as exceptional as we think it is. I disagree. Our country IS exceptional in all kinds of ways.  But where we do fail is by allowing our once great cities to die. I’m just a DJ…

But what do you think?

16 thoughts on “What About Us?

  1. Tom….you are racist or you just make racist comments.During this segment of the show you stated that you are only concerned with the black unemployment rate. If a white DJ would have said they are only worried about the white rate you, rev al and jesse would be screaming. Stick to topics you know and understand.

  2. Great insight and commentary. I couldn’t agree with you more. Everything can’t and shouldn’t be settled through war and violence. Once the shooting starts who knows what happens next.

  3. I have asked for help in my situation and no one wants to (lawyers and local Naacp President). This year i had one of the highest scores for the alternative school for science. My students were labeled little or no growth. Yet all my students excelled well and some of my students surpasses their goals. Yet, I was told that I was ineffective and I believe because of the allegations and now I am unemployed. I have had 15 interviews and no one has offered a position and I feel “Blacklisted”. My spouse who is also a teacher worries that when she get home that something might happen to me. Now Derek Walker, Aaron Alexis , and Jonathan Ferell have their lives taken by police. I am very much afraid now because of my depression. No one want to help or assist. Now, I wish I was in Derek’s spot and took the bullett. I just want to thank you for letting me rant and just pray for me. TY and GN!

  4. Hey Tom and all jokes aside. There was a situation on Tuesday where a father had his life ended in Durham NC https://www.facebook.com/thefuneraldirector/posts/10151666235964632
    Now Tom, after watching this on the evening news, I had a relaspe when my ex spouse accused me for Non Payment and I was surprised by 8 police officers from the Charlotte Mecklenberg PD with “Red Dots” across my chest.

    This situation that you are about to see only affect a small portion in this population. You have a man after 18 years of marriage and gave the ex-spouse the divorce because he wanted to move the family from a crime ridden area and relocate them to a family friendly environment. The mother decides to listen to her girlfriends and now this father is wrongfully convicted of Non Payment of Child Support;however, during the small series of videos. You will see how he was trapped in a system that will not release him. Therefore, if all men are “Deadbeats Daddies” because of Child Support then the women who collect child support like it is a constitutional right. Then these type of mothers shall be called “Sperm Trappers”? You Decide.

  5. R Freeman. on said:

    The reason I disagree with you Tom is because this country gives billions of dollars to Israel every year. Some of that could go to our desperate cities. Israel uses the money we give them for their war chest. Let’s keep it real. Since we care so much more for Israel than our own cities that are in despair, why not help Syria as well?

    • As stated in my commentary, God has not told me that we should intervene in Syria. (My commentary is posted at http://keeba.org/Syria_Support.html)
      Israel is our government’s ally and accordingly, [the U.S.] will help them because they have something to offer in return. In my opinion, I believe that if our government officials are going to continue to use the words “moral obligations”, then it seems likely they would help their allies in the region that has taken in refugees. (There is nothing like good old hypocrisy.)

      As for all the Middle Eastern conflict we have involved ourselves [in] we have not made the conditions better, as we have proven that in Iraq, and Libya and undoubtedly Afghanistan. Yes, Libya is in the North African region, but still, undoubtedly, we got involved and currently it is in civilian conflict and confusion.
      Our government MUST stop the insanity of doing the same thing over again with the same results!

  6. Jerry L. Boykin on said:

    Don’t apologize for telling the truth, Tom! I agree with you. We don’t want to waste Americas lightly. sons and daughters lives lightly.I served over 20 years to protect and defend, so do what you do. And many thanks to y’all.

  7. Syria…
    At first, I only saw a few pictures of those Syrian civilians that were traumatized by the chemical attack, but on Friday, August 30th, I saw a video of women and children who had been chemically attacked. I was deeply saddened that they endured such pain; one boy hoping to die.
    I do not hate anything but I do hate an injustice.
    It is not just the money each missile cost, but the cost of civilian lives. Syria has needs, but bombs and missiles are not necessities.
    Our allies are in need of humanitarian efforts, and if the U.S. feels a moral obligation, then we can supply Syria with those necessary charitable items.

    Syria does not need more war, as war is not the answer.

  8. Ivan Cohen on said:

    The person who said that “War creates jobs and boosts the economy” can explain to the rest of us why the opposite effect took place during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  9. Robert Stevens on said:

    I concur with Tom’s salient points. I served and retired as a naval officer after 28 years. American citizens must not take it lightly sending our sons and daughters into war, especially another country’s civil war. Other point, United Nations council must be held accountable to do what it is supposed to do.
    Enforcement of violated international laws is not USA’s sole responsibility.

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