“I have often, as an exercise and as a sustenance, painted before an object down to the smallest accidents of its visual appearance. But the day left me sad and with an unsatiated thirst. The next day I let the other source run, that of imagination through the recollection of the forms and I was then reassured and appeased.” —Odilon Redon
Photos from Ithaca College’s African Student Association “Fight the Stereotype” campaign. So important.
Today in Black History: February 5, 1995
- Trayvon Martin born in Miami, Florida. Trayvon became a household name after his murder in 2012 sparked a national conversation about the deadly consequences of racial profiling in America.
When Martin was nine years old, he saved his father’s life by pulling his father, who had been immobilized by burns to the legs, out of a fire in their apartment. Martin’s former football coach said Martin had been one of the best players on their football team (The Wolverines) that played at Forzano Park in Miramar, Florida. Martin played for the Wolverines from age 8 to 13, and sometimes sat out because his father benched him “because he messed up in school.” Martin had played football at the park since he was five years old and his team was coached in part, by his father. During his years in high school, Martin volunteered at Forzano Park, working in the concession stand, sometimes staying until 8 or 9 p.m. before going home.
Martin’s former football coach said he was a shy kid and always walked with his hoodie and headphones on listening to music.
When Martin started high school, his goal of playing professional football was put aside in favor of a career working with airplanes. Martin attended Carol City High School in Miami Gardens for his freshman year and most of his sophomore year, before he transferred to Krop High School in north Miami-Dade in 2011.
While in his first year at Carol City, Martin attended classes in the mornings at the high school and then went to George T. Baker Aviation School for the rest of his school day.
He would have been 19 today.
Anytime you set out to do something great in life, there will be critics. If you’re going to be a great businessperson, coach, student, leader or employee, there will be opposition. The more success you have, the more opportunities there will be for distractions. The higher you go, the more haters will come out. When you start stretching to a new level and pursuing what God has placed in your heart, the jealous people, the critical people, and the small-minded people come out of the woodwork and start making negative comments, but you don’t have to let that distract you.
If you are under pressure today, if the critical voices are coming against you, know that it’s because you are making a difference. Don’t let them throw you off course. Instead, dig your heels in, set your face like a flint, and say, “I will not get distracted. I will not get drawn into battles that don’t matter. It doesn’t matter what others think; it matters what God thinks!”
Today, look beyond the critics. Stand strong in adversity. Press forward to what lies ahead and win the prize of life that He has prepared for you!