Jimmy Walker

Jimmy Walker on Choices and Responsibility

Actor and comedian Jimmy Walker, popular for the hit show Good Times, explains his philosophy of life from his memoir Dyn-O-Mite!:

What I have understood my entire life is that I am an individual. Each of us is an individual. Each of us makes choices in life, and we are responsible for those choices. Blaming our race, our parents, our economic status—whatever—is common today. But they are all excuses for not coming to grips with our own lives and our freedom to choose. 
I had a violent father and grew up in the ghetto, but I did not become a drug addict. I was the son of folks from Selma, Alabama, but I did not hate white people. I was a child of the 60’s, but I did not put flowers in my hair. I enjoyed enormous fame, but I did not do a celebrity crash and burn. Why not?
Because of the choices I made. I believe that, ultimately, every one of us is free to choose. Even though I am black, I am free. I believe that each of us is free, free at first and free at last. -Jimmy Walker, pp. 3.

It’s easier to blame our situation, family of origin, God, government, or race for whatever seems to be wrong, or lacking in our lives, instead of taking responsibility. I appreciate the simple truth: Each of us makes choices in life, and we are responsible for those choices. 

I know life is more complex, and situations vary, but taking responsibility for the choices we make is important for whatever our plight is. Thanks Jimmy for the reminder, that was DYN-O-MITE!