Children can resemble their parents, just as residents can resemble their hometown.
The fruit sure doesn’t fall far from the tree. In fact, it only took 45-minutes for Felisha George to journey over to the city that writer, Ralph Waldo Emerson, referred to as a “ sucked orange.” George, 23, is an activist, female rapper and political leader who hails from the same town as singer-songwriter, Lauryn Hill. So, when the South Orange resident ventured up to the South Bronx, it was no surprise that she brought a tangy flavor with her. A taste that everyone can appreciate.
Citrus has a healing power. It possesses essential nutrients to the body and can be used to fight off infections. George, like citrus, has a healing power. She brings knowledge, wisdom and compassion to a society that chronically suffers from ignorance, hatred and injustice. Dose by dose, proactive citizens like George, help achieve peace in the world we live in.
“ I want to make sure that when people listen to my music, it sends a message,” said George. “A message that can last for a long time.”
In 2017, George decided to plant a career in politics. “ I started this political path just because of things that I went through in my town educationally that I feel shouldn’t have happened,” said George. “ We were taught to take lower level classes, we’re not taught to excel, we’re not taught to push ourselves to the highest of extent.” According to data website, “Neighborhood Scout,” South Orange high schools graduate 94.6% of their students, but only 19.3 % go on to attend college. “ I feel like we were put on the back burner and someone needs to be a voice for the students of color.”
George plans to bring great change to the South Orange community, with a heavy emphasis on the educational system. Despite the contrary opinion of some of her neighbors, George believes that her young age is an advantage. “ I’m only 23 and running for office …the youngest woman of color to run for office,” she said. George, who graduated from high school in 2012, can vividly remember the challenges of the education system and is confident that she can provide the necessary tools needed to restructure the way students are taught.
“ The Bronx had a huge impact on why I want to be an activist,” said George. She credits her uncle who is a Captain in the New York City Police Department and her grandmother who dedicated many years to working in the Board of Education for influencing her to be an active force in her community. “ It’s very important that I bring what I learned home,” said George.
The Bronx also inspired George to become a rapper and lyricist. She recalled a time when she would spend time with her older cousins who would take on rap battles after dusk in the parks of housing projects. Years later, she tapped into the talent that she admired as a child…freestyling. “ I started out just putting freestyles on Instagram,” said George. “ People actually started liking it, so I started making music and doing songs.” George’s work has been recognized on the celebrity and entertainment news site, The Shade Room, and on BET’s Freestyle Friday program where she was one of five females to participate. “ I’m going to be the change in Hip-Hop and I’m not going to form or fit into anything else,” said George.
This incredible influencer has a message for young individuals who want to chase their dreams: “ Don’t let your own insecurities hold you back from being as great as you can.”
Be sure to follow Felisha George @felishageorge_ to see the impact and change she continues to bring as an activist, lyricist, and political leader.