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A Chat with Our CribGrown™ CribChief

Haile Clay

Navitent, Inc. Founder and CEO:

In every other role I have in this company, I am the Founder and CEO. On these CribGrown™ pages, I put on my hat as CribChief. If you are black in the United States, you know what it is like to wear those two hats. When I was young, we called them masks and talked about them like our dirty secrets. We shared privately how we had to act around white people at work and how we had to put on our game face to maintain our street cred in the hood. Well, let's get rid of that stigma right here and now. In CribGrown™, there are no hats to wear, masks to don, or secrets that it is a reality that we have to wear them to fit the situation, and that is just life. At CribGrown™, come as you are. Members' only requirement is a 100% achievement focus on recreating and passing on lost generational knowledge of how to succeed in a purpose-driven life through a system designed for one mission: to improve the human condition under any hat or behind any mask. That's Navitent. DeeperEngaged is Navitent for Social Good. DeeperEngaged for Social Justice is Navitent to uplift Black people. CribGrown™ is just for us, by us.

Many people in America have to wear many masks. Playing a role to take care of something you need to do usually is ok. However, the masks we wear are always toxic, and the hats are always laced with cruelty and poison when it comes to stigma.

So my Chat's, for now, will be dedicated to the antidote for those poisonous things we have to endure as people. Stigma Is Discrimination. Let's describe what we mean when we use that hashtag right off the bat.  

What is Stigma is Discrimination? Let's break it down.

Stigma: a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person.

Is: a word used to describe an action, state, or occurrence, and forming the main part of the predicate of a sentence, such as hearbecomehappen.

Discrimination: is the unjust or prejudicial treatment of different categories.

Having to wear a hat or a mask is not a mark of disgrace. But it becomes discrimination when it leads to prejudicial treatment or unjustified adverse outcomes. And when it is a stigma against ourselves, it brings those unfair outcomes down on our heads.

#StigmaisDiscrimination refers to "a mark whose presence leads to actions against us that are designed to limit us from achieving our goals and fulfillment of our purpose and ambition." It is that much worse when stigma turns inward. In that case we become self-depriving of the opportunity to become self-actualized, full of meaning and honor.

At CribGrown™, we don't value any trade-in words, political theater, or hot button positions. Here it is about what we can do to pull ourselves up, create a foundation of success, and transfer wisdom to live well done. In that sense, CribGrown™ is about #AntiStigma, the "just and unprejudiced achievement of goals and fulfillment of purpose and ambition."

#AntiStigma Is Pro-Achievement: social justice requires the application of an antidote to the stigma that works immediately, effectively, and unconcerned with the hat or mask the patient is wearing when injected. #AntiStigma is thriving to be your best self, full of meaning and purpose. We don't wait for the absence of stigma, which we can't control, but act in spite of it, which we can train ourselves to do. AntiStigma kills the power we gave that word to destroy our hopes and dreams. Enough.

Here we don't trade in words or political theater. Here it is about action. It is about the #AntiStigma and the just and impartial "achievement of goals and fulfillment of purpose and ambition."


The #AntiStigma: Let's Lift It Up

In terms of social justice, the opposite of stigma is not the absence of stigma. The #AntiStigma is an achievement despite the stigma, whether or not it exists. It is an action that breaks through the trauma. It is the bravery and the skill to do something that fills you with self-doubt, shame, future tripping methodically and wisely. It is steps that demonstrate stigma doesn't determine your destiny. Your actions do.  


The Greatest Stigma of All is "I Can't Do This."

I am an Army trainer. My Brigade bravado was "Gunslingers - shoot 'em up." I know for a fact that, (with the proper training, sufficient firepower, and determination to accomplish the mission for the sake of those who rely on you), you can achieve any objective put in front of you. But you have to fight as a team working as professionals despite any difference you may have had or where you came from, or how you look in your hat. Yes, I tell you, we can pull ourselves up by our bootstraps if that is the mission. 

We only need to arm ourselves with the patterns, raw material, tools to make our own boots, and the connections to each other to act as the straps. I read a meme that said, "Never beg for a seat at the table when you can build your own table." The questions are:

  1. Under whose tent is my table most useful?
  2. Who do I invite to sit with me to get the most bang?
  3. How can I make the most significant impact if I take my time being there first?

The idea of CribGrown™ is for us to have our own tent, our own tables, and our own invitation list and seating chart. The stigma I am here to break that I see is that we, as black people think deeper. We plan more soulfully. We value more than money, though we have to have a plan to make money too. We love the individual, but still, we part of the body, heart, and soul of the whole. At CribGrown™, those traits are not marks of shame. They are marks of exceptional distinction.  


DeeperEngaged™ for Social Justice CribGrown™ is our GPS for Change™.