Ladas Hoopes McNeill

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Thursday, October 29, 2015

Men of Color Read

I'd like to start this writing out by saying I am not perfect.  I am able to admit that the differences we share as a community bother me sometimes....well, a lot of the time, and I make an honest and open effort to take every single person I meet as a friend I have not met yet.  I am also not blind to the fact that as a community, we should all be able to do a little better when it comes to knowing our differences, accepting our own faults and not thinking that somehow problems are exclusive to a certain group.  I am a firm believer that we are all in this together, sink or swim.

That being said I want to tell you about an extraordinary group of guys who have said enough is enough and taken matters into their own hands when it comes to children's literacy.  Men of Color Read is an organization dedicated to showing kids that reading is the first step toward success.  I was shocked to hear the numbers of kids who don't make it through school because they can't read.

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From "The Atlantic" - 

"A student who can't read on grade level by 3rd grade is four times less likely to graduate by age 19 than a child who does read proficiently by that time."

Folks, we're taking about reading here.  It doesn't cost much, it's paramount to building the lives of good people and let's be honest.  Looking at that statistic above, if you spent 19 years trying to read and feeling discouraged and dumb because you couldn't....wouldn't you throw in the towel too?



Took us 10 takes...ya...we were screwing around :)

I know a few of the guys who are behind this push and I know too, the sincere effort they are putting forth to better the lives of kids.  Eddie Sanders Jr. who you see in the picture with me, Jon Covington, Paul Billings and more great guys, dedicated to making a difference.  Eddie has even written a song called "They Counted Us Out" which is about the program as well as a fundraiser.  Here's a link to get a copy.  


Yep, the name of the group is Men of Color Read, but the reality is, being illiterate....there is no color barrier there.  These guys are setting the bar high for all of us and they are willing to spend their time and energy showing kids that being able to read is cool, it's essential and really...most anyone can do it, if someone cares enough to teach it.  Spend some time with your kids.  Read to them, add excitement and flair to your reading.  Bond with your kids and give them a positive role model to look up to.   

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