collabyrinth’s rationale for the specific focus of it’s work could not be better articulated than it is in this excerpt from a speech by one of the best and brightest America has ever produced, Fred Hampton.
Fred Hampton was cut down in his prime at the age of 21 by systemic racism. had his voice been amplified, many real tangible examples of beloved community would be proliferating realities in America by now.
“A lot of people will tell you, ‘Well, the people don’t have any theory, they need some theory. They need some theory even if they don’t have any practice.’ And the Black Panther Party tells you that if a man tells you that he’s the type of man who has you buying candy bars and eating the wrapping and throwing the candy away, he’d have you walking East when you’re supposed to be walking West. Its true. If you listen to what the pig says, you be walkin’ outside when the sun is shining with your umbrella over your head. And when it’s raining you’ll be goin’ outside leaving your umbrella inside. That’s right. You gotta get it together. I’m saying that’s what they have you doing.
“Now, what do WE do? We say that the Breakfast For Children program is a socialistic program. It teaches the people basically that by practice, we thought up and let them practice that theory and inspect that theory. What’s more important? You learn something just like everybody else.
“Let me try to break it down to you.
“You say this Brother here goes to school 8 years to be an auto mechanic. And that teacher who used to be an auto mechanic, he tells him, ‘Well… you gotta go on what we call on-the-job-training.’ And he says, ‘Damn, with all this theory I got, I gotta go to on-the-job-training? What for?’
“He said, ‘On on-the-job-training he works with me. Ive been here for 20 years. When I started work, they didn’t even have auto mechanics. I ain’t got no theory, I just got a whole bunch of practice.’
“What happened? A car came in making a whole lot of funny noise. This Brother here go get his book. He on page one, he ain’t got to page 200. I’m sitting here listening to the car. He says, ‘What do you think it is?’
“I say, ‘I think its the carburetor.’
“He says, ‘No I don’t see anywhere in here where it says a carburetor make no noise like that.’ And he says, ‘How do you know its the carburetor?’
“I said, ‘Well… with all them degrees as many as a thermometer, around 20 years ago, 19 to be exact, I was listening to the same kind of noise. And what I did was I took apart the voltage regulator and it wasn’t that. Then I took apart the alternator and it wasn’t that. I took apart the generator brushes and it wasn’t that. I took apart the generator and it wasn’t even that. After I took apart all that I finally got to the carburetor and when I got to the carburetor I found that that’s what it was. And I told myself that “fool, next time you hear this sound you better take apart the carburetor first.”‘
“How did he learn? He learned through practice.
“I dont care how much theory you got, if it don’t have any practice applied to it, then that theory happens to be irrelevant. Right? Any theory you get, practice it. And when you practice it you make some mistakes. When you make a mistake, you correct that theory, and then it will be corrected theory that will be able to be applied and used in any situation. That’s what we’ve got to be able to do.”