Earlier this year, when the moving truck pulled out of my driveway in Tallahassee to take me home to Atlanta, I was smiling like a Black Cheshire cat.
Once back on the street in Atlanta, it seemed I was in an unknown territory. The city was nothing like I left it when I went to graduate school at The Washington Journalism Center.
I figured all I had to do upon my return was to contact my old employers at the Atlanta Journal, Cox Broadcasting Corporation or WSB-TV and find me a little media hustle to supplement my retirement income.
Not so fast, my friends
It didn’t matter where I had worked or what professional experience I had. Today, Atlanta is not a “what you know” city; it is a “who you know” town.
No problem. I just picked myself up, dusted my professional ego off and proceeded to start my media career all over again.
The Black so-called power brokers in Atlanta, as in most urban communities, primarily love the professionals that the non-Blacks love.
The first time I picked up an Atlanta newspaper and turned to the editorial pages I saw a column written by Leonard Pitts, the same syndicated columnist whose column also appears in the Miami Herald.
I have to tell you
Pitts and Gantt once had differences of opinions that were highly publicized in major newspapers and other media outlets. Just Google “Leonard Pitts and Lucius Gantt.”
I love Leonard Pitts, DeWayne Wickham, Cynthia Tucker, William Raspberry and other Black opinion writers that have won or may have won journalism awards like Pulitzer Prizes. Opinion writers like them are famous for writing for White newspapers and White readers.
But great Black writers like John Russwurm, Samuel Cornish, Ida Wells, Marvel Jackson Cooke, Mary Ann Shadd Cary and many others never won many similar awards because of their skin tones.
The Pulitzer Prize which is so coveted was started at Columbia University after Mr. Pulitzer left the school about $2 million in his will. The award recipients never tell you, but Pulitzer was a hardcore Republican who was indicted for libel and some believe he was as biased as the current U.S. president.
Don’t write for prizes
Anyway, some Black columnists will never be considered for any special recognition by conservative journalism award givers.
Don’t fret. In my opinion, the best Black writers don’t write for the newspapers and people that Columbia University likes. The best Black writers write for the people, whether Columbia University likes and respects their writings or not!
Our community needs all kinds of different Black writers. We need liberal writers, conservative writers, radical writers and revolutionary writers.
Writing my truth
The Gantt Report will stay in its lane. Like rappers rap about their experiences, I will continue to write about my experiences.
I write about love and happiness. But I also write about exploitation, oppression, social degradation, hate, abuse and misuse.
I hope you enjoy The Gantt Report, because the column will not change.
The Gantt Report will always be a voice for the voiceless and continue to shine the light on the dark side of journalism and world societies.
I congratulate, respect and support the Black opinion columnists that feel they need to please the White newspaper owners that pay them.
White newspapers, like White political parties, will always believe they only need to hire someone with melanin. In other words, “Any Negro will do!”
Buy Gantt’s latest book, “Beast Too: Dead Man Writing,” on Amazon.com and from bookstores everywhere. “Like” The Gantt Report page on Facebook. Contact Lucius at www.allworldconsultants.net. Click on this commentary at www.flcourier.com to write your own response.