There are those who question why UFD requires a $50 a month for membership. They say We're a scam; that we're asking for money under false pretenses. It's understandable why people would feel that way. There are a lot of con artists and crooks out there who prey on people. And, truth be told, UFD could be a scam. We live in a world of both good and evil, and it's not always easy to tell the difference.
Although UFD has been around since 2008, We haven't had the opportunity to use social media to reach people on a national level until now. UFD is the brainchild of a man who has been incarcerated since he was 17 years old for robbery, attempted robbery, and related offenses. He didn't hurt anyone and had no criminal record before then, but he was sentenced to 35 to 70 years. The American criminal (in)justice system is rarely fair to a poor, young Black manchild. Make no mistake, Mfalme Sikivu, the Founder and Executive Minister of UFD, accepts full responsibility for the crimes he committed as a child.
In fact, it was because of Mfalme learning about Black History in how Our freedom fighting ancestors fought, bled, and died for the rights and opportunities We as Black people take for granted today that motivate him to found UFD. Mflame felt a sense of shame that Our freedom fighting ancestors suffered so much to make his future better yet he threw his future away out of ignorance for a dollar. He needed to redeem himself. So he got involved in trying to organize his peers to change and better themselves and to become assets to their families and communities. UFD initially was to be an alternative to gang life, but Mfalme expanded it's purpose to be a mass organization for Black empowerment along socio-economic lines.
So, because Mfalme was incarcerated, it was extremely hard to reach people outside prison walls with UFD message. For one, people have a hard time taking a prisoner seriously. To most people, a prisoner or ex-prisoner is always up to some scheme, scam, or gimmick. This sterotype isn't entirely unfounded, nor is it completely justified. Two, sad to say, most people lack vision, that is, the ability to see a positive outcome in future plans. Most people live in the moment, afraid to take risks and live out of their dreams. So, seeing the benefit in the plane or vision of some jailbird isn't something they can fathom.
Hence, UFD isn't well known or well established outside prison walls. But because of the dedication of a young lady with the courage and tenacity to believe not only in Mfalme's vision but in her own capacity to do something great, UFD is now able to reach more people with its message. We don t expect you to believe in Us right away. Even we'll established organizations had to start from A beginning during which nobody knew or trusted them. We're unthwarted by this. In fact, We want to earn your trust.
Let's be clear, though. We're glad UFD isn't well known or established. Many well known or well established Black organizations today are marred by conventionalism. They're involved only in ad hoc or local issues that only address surface problem. They're mostly 501(c) Not-for-Profit organizations that vie with one another for White grant money from the government and different foundations. So they're beholden to White interests. These groups may do some good but they don't address the fundamental problem that affects Black people as a whole when it comes to police brutality, over-incarceration, unemployment, under-employment, employment, lack of economic opportunity (I.e having access to capital to start and expand Black owned businesses), substandard education, and Black-on- Black violence.
All of these issues stem from the legacy of White Supremacy that America was founded upon and fact that there hasn't been an equal distribution of wealth and power in this country Between Whites and Blacks. It has only been about 60 years since the U.S. government actively sought to destroy and neutralize progressive Black movements; and only about 50 years since the U.S. government introduced guns and drugs into Black communities in unprecedented numbers. These were moves that led to the explosion of Black-on-Black violence in inner-city communities.
These "well established" Black organizations today will never speak this truth to power. The White power structure gets offended by telling this truth. These "well established" Black organizations won't risk their grant money to really address why a White police officer can get away with gunning down a Black person. Or to address the real reason why there is a culture of drugs and violence in Black communities. Because We as a people won‘t tackle the real problem, that is, the imbalance of wealth and power between Whites and Blacks, We never make any substantial progress is Our efforts for social justice andnational unity.
UFD is a grassroots organization which relies on the dues and donations from Our people to sustain Us. So We're beholden to only to Our people, particularly Our membership. So we can speak truth to power and organize Our people for what's really important: wealth and power. This is the one thing Our people have sorely neglected to do. We can set up 501(c) Not-for-Profit organizations and vie for White grant money, but We won't pool together Our vast collective wealth and power to finance Our own efforts. Our people are worth about 1 trillion dollars, but We squander most of that, investing in nothing, especially not in Ourselves. So when UFD asks for $50 a month, We have to be a scam. Sad.
Bottom line, UFD isn't a scam. We ask for $50 a month to be invested in Our mission to build a multibillion dollar people's movement. We seek to invest in Black businesses, talents, skills, and genius; to build a New Black Economy in which We promote investment and entrepreneurship. How do We expect for Us to do this if We're not willing to put Our money
where Our mouth is? Why do We as a people have the hardest time investing in each other? We're worth about 1 trillion dollars collectively but spend less than 10% of that with Ourselves. We have no problem spending Our money with White businesses yet UFD can't ask for $50 a month? Is there any wonder why We're victimized, used, and abused by everyone, even Ourselves? Maybe We deserve what We get.