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More Black men are being incarcerated at higher rates and young African-American men are falling behind their peers in the classroom, according to PBS. Only 54% of African Americans graduate from high school, compared to more than 75% of their Caucasian and Asian American peers.

According to the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Black males ages 18 and older make up just 5.5% of all college students. Of the young Black males who do make it to college, only one in six will receive a college degree.

And the NAACP says African-American males are filling up prisons nationwide in disproportionate numbers, comprising 1 million out of the total 2.3 million of incarcerated men – and one in three African-American men age 18-24 is unemployed.

Dwyane Morgan, 36, drove nine hours from Indianapolis to Washington, D.C., with his nephew and four cousins.

“I wanted them to witness this event and I wanted them to learn about what’s happening around them,” Morgan said, as he stood on the Mall listening to a multicultural mix of Blacks, Latinos and Arab men and women focused on social justice speak. “And I wanted them to learn something about themselves.”

Lewis Allen, 14, from Indianapolis, said his family expects to see a positive change from the experience.

“They want me to leave Indianapolis as a boy,” he said, “and come back as a man.”

What a refreshing outlook on life from a Black teenager.

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The Million Man March – 20 Years Later, Its Ideals Are Still Valid  was originally published on

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