To the editor:
Readers, if you missed Annetta Catchings’ essay in the Jan. 14 Alexandria Times, “Harmful messaging in Black slogans,” please find a copy or go to https://alextimes.com/2021/01/my-view-harmful-messaging-in-black-slogans-by-annetta-catchings/ and read it. Her message of hope and encouragement is exactly what we all need to hear. Especially now.
What’s impressive is how Catchings is telling us that we can all achieve if we believe we can and work hard. Her essay does not diminish the challenges many of us experience in life, whether it’s discrimination, disabilities or lack of parental support.
What she is telling us is that instead we need to listen to those who tell us we can realize our dreams if we believe we can and then do the necessary work, whether it’s education or skills training.
All of us need to diminish the words of naysayers, refuse to listen to the victim narrative, and instead listen to those who send us messages of hope: teachers, ministers, parents, grandparents and friends.
Catchings’ story is one of empowerment that apparently began with grandparents and then her mother. She is successful and is now endowing that permission and guidance to her son.
As a professional career counselor, I have learned to listen to the stories of many successful people in our world and without exception, each credits someone who encouraged and supported them. Way to go, Catchings, and please keep reminding all of us of what is doable.
Each of us should send out this message of hope to others as you have.
-Linda Couture, Alexandria