“Independence is when we stand on our own two feet. We are free. We need no assistance. We need no help.
“Interdependence is when those who stand on their own two feet also allow others to stand on their shoulders to be successful in life.”
Tarver, as the guest speaker, said that success doesn’t come without a struggle.
“Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. walked the streets of America for freedom and shared his dream with an entire nation,” he said.
He called on the community to come together more often than just once a year to celebrate the accomplishments of the black community.
“We have to remember blacks have achieved greatness in sports because everyone has wanted to be like Mike.
“We have achieved greatness in music because everyone has wanted to be Snoop Dogg or other rappers who grace our radios and where our children purchase their music and try to mimic them in their walk, talk and dress.”
He said that there are blacks who have become doctors, lawyers and many other noble professions.
“We have achieved greatness even in politics which has impacted our entire society from Beeville, Texas and across the entire world.”
He called on everyone to learn more not only about their ethnic history but about the history of the country.
“Opposition takes place when there is lack of understanding of what is going on in society,” he said. “If we get to learn about it, then perhaps we will enjoy it.”
He said that as pastor of a multicultural church, he knows how important is to learn about cultures that are different from his.
“It isn’t fair to teach others about the history and culture I am familiar with and refuse to learn about theirs,” he said.
He posed a seemingly simple question to the 50 or so people seated at the long tables on lawn of the college campus.
“How are we are going to be united? How are we going to be unified?
“We have to love.”
Throughout the day, students, faculty and the community were treated not only to music and food but to a panel of speakers that included Idotha Battle, Dr. Denise Hutchinson-Bell, Ronald Givens, Darryl Martin and Lois Virata.
Jason Collins is the editor at the Bee-Picayune and can be reached at 358-2550, ext. 121, or at editor@mySouTex.com.