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The Black Card: Fast Nickels Beat Slow Dimes–We Have to be Warriors for the Movement and Embrace Both Coins

By Terry Allen
CEO, 1016 Media
Founder, Sister CEO Small Business Camp

My past columns have stated wisdom taught to me during my SMU school years by my Grandmother, lovingly known as BIG Mama. As an NABJ board member, I attended our recent virtual conference, NABJNAHJ20 Virtual. It was a major success! So many shining moments happened but one moment that stood out that resonated with me.

During a Toyota-sponsored NABJ town hall session, Where Do We Go From Here: What’s Our Collective Strategy to Overcome Social Injustice? with Marc Morial (NUL), Jericka Duncan (CBS), Eric Deggans (NPR) and Renee Montgomery (WNBA) spoke in the same tone as my Texas Metro News column did weeks ago: We Need to Make This Moment a Movement by Maintaining Momentum.

On the hills of the unprecedented ground-breaking partnership, TMN has with the Dallas Morning News, this unique alignment of the column and the panel (found on YouTube currently) is further confirmation that we are on target. I witnessed speaking truth to power. I saw a call for warriors to choose between becoming a fast nickel or a slow dime. A Nickel Warrior dedicates themselves to the service of fighting for and protecting a physical kingdom. A Dime Warrior makes a commitment to demonstrate peace, commitment to disseminate peace, convey brotherly love, and do the work necessary for justice and for the service to others. Both show up for the battle that takes place both spiritually and physically as they demand honesty and social justice.

My Big Mama’s first mind would tell me that Black people, especially Black men, are at risk as this country and this world is in the middle of a worldwide reckoning on race. She would say that “the ancestors have risen up to drive justice to their people.”  She most likely would be right. As communities call on their leaders to impact systemic racism, the call to action has risen in both sectors, public and private. Wisconsin, Ohio, California, Nevada, and Michigan became the latest states to declare racism a public health crisis. So, are you ready to join me and go beyond a culture of conversation and build a spiritual-driven army of warriors that are ready to step into their strength and power?


Are you ready to be a fast nickel or a slow dime? Can I save you a seat at the table? Email me at

Terry Allen is a multimedia journalist and board member of the National Association of Black Journalists.

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