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AfriGeneas Discuss! Forum Archive 2

The Great University of Sankore at Timbuktu
In Response To: Why A Discuss Board? ()

"Where is the power?

Not on the outside, but

within...Thoughts are things.

You are the thinker that thinks

the thought, that makes the

thing. If you don't like it,

then change your thoughts.

Make it what you want it to

be." Johnnie Coleman

Dear VKN,

I have not visited the Afrigeneas site in several days and only returned this morning to read your post and the thoughtful responses. My initial reaction to the possibility that the "Discuss" Board may be discontinued was one of dismay.

Like others, I first came to this Board to follow up on a post that was placed on another board. The discussion began on the Slavery Forum Board regarding the accuracy of census information in designating the race or "color" of individuals as "mullato." At the suggestion of a site administrator, the discussion was transferred to the Discuss forum. The intelligent debate that we had on that issue resulted in my return to "Discuss" time and time again, most often just to read rather than to post. This forum enabled me to touch the pulse of "African America" across the world. Along the way, I have made many friends...people like Elaine, Rose Mary, Deborah, Art, George, Alta, Dena, and Angela. I have gained respect and admiration for the numerous posters on this forum and their diverse opinions and perspectives on life in America as a Black person. Through the messages posted here, I have learned SO MUCH! MY LONG HELD PERCEPTION OF THE Discuss Forum is THAT IT HAD EVOLVED INTO THE WESTERN EXTENSION OF THE GREAT UNIVERSITY OF SANKORE AT TIMBUKTU.

Now, I acknowledge that some of you may see comparing the Discuss Forum to The Great University of Sankore at Timbuktu as a stretch. But in my experience, I have received a well-rounded education through the contributions of numerous posters on the Discuss Forum. My knowledge has grown substantially in the following fields:

Languages, Art, Literature, Jazz, Gospel, Pop Music, Blues, African History, African American History, African American Culinary Science, Sociology, Political Science, Civil Rights, Law, Genetics, Etymology, Geneaology, Research and Writing Skills, Poetry,Human Rights, Race Relations, Current Events, and on and on.

There is no other media resource that I access that offers such a wide range of resources for obtaining information on the above subjects and many others.

I thank you VKN and all of the other Afrigeneas Volunteers for providing this forum. My knowledge base has expanded considerably by virtue of it. I thank all of the posters who have contributed to my understanding of history and human relations.

May I suggest ways in which the discuss forum may be revamped to ensure its survival:

1] Limit access to the forum to "paid subscribers" only. I would be willing to pay a reasonable annual fee to support this forum.

2} With the additional monetary resources, establish a website program that enables the monitoring of messages BEFORE they are posted to prevent the posting of profane, obscene, and inflammatory language.

3} Modify the language in the forum heading so that range of topics is not so general that it encourages the posting of inflammatory messages rather than intelligent debate. Perhaps a special board of long time contributors could suggest the "topic of the day" for discussion.

I implore the Afrigeneas Board to give serious thought to ways in which the Discuss Forum can be salvaged and revamped. If this forum is shut down simply as a "reactive" response to the hate mongers that periodically visit...then evil will declare the victory of the day. Do not let the few negative individuals who visit here destroy our spirit.

"Out of the heart are the issues

of life and no external force,

however great and overwhelming,

can at long last destroy a people

if it does not first win the

victory of the spirit against

them." Howard Thurman

Sincerely yours,

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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